Tires that don't work for Dual Sport

Dunlop Trials tires! I bought (actually my wife gave it to me for our anniversary or Christmas) a D803 trial tire thinking it would be a good dual sport tire. I figured the shape and spacing of the lugs would make for good on road handling, while the soft flexible design would be great for off road. My intention was to buy the Pirelli MT43. I had read reviews that said it worked well and handled the wear of pavement riding and performed superbly on the trails. Well, someone (cycle gear employee) convinced my wife that the Dunlop was the way to go.

I mounted it up (despite knowing that it may not work so well) and gave it a whirl. I put about 50 pavement miles on it and noticed the center lugs starting to tear a little bit. I knew its life was limited.

This past weekend I did the annual Cal Poly Penguins High Mountain Dual Sport ride which is 130 miles +/- with about 50 miles of pavement and rest dirt. At the 80 mile mark (lunch) the tire was about done. 2/3 of the center lugs were gone, and the rest were tearing. At the end of the day, I think there are about 5 lugs left!

I will say, the tire performed well all day long. Even with the center lugs gone, the tire still works great.

I conclude that this tire is much too soft for dual sport riding!

Now I am back to where I was in December...which rear tire do I get now?

The Pirelli is better and DOT legal but it will also suffer from very much pavement use. I rode Hi Mountain on a trials tire 2 years ago. Part of the secret is to not accelerate hard on high traction surfaces. A big 4 stroke will tear the knobs off.

As for what to use for dual sport, there is no perfect answer.

Dunlop D606s. If you're vertically challenged, their low profile will help with footing.

Yeah.... as you just figured out ....trials tires really are not meant to DS on. I know alot of guys who get a ton of trail miles out of trials tires, but I don't know anyone who has ran a DOT rated trials on pavement, so I can't comment on life span.....

Too much air pressure......I have ridden on D803 for a couple thousand miles. Yeah the center lugs were Starting to tear off......Its a trials tire. The hookup makes up for the wear IMHO.

A large amount of the D37 guys you rode with will recommend the MT 43.

I am sure that pressure was a big issue. Since the carcass couldn't flex, it passed that duty on to the lugs and killed them. I am going to a 2-wheel set program pretty soon here, so my next set of tires can be more dirt oriented. But most of my rides are still DS with a lot of pavement. May still consider the Pirelli trials tire, but may look for something else (or take whatever comes on the wheel I buy).

Who are the D37 guys?

I was referring to the AMA District 37 Dual Sport members. The majority of the members that have tried the MT 43 swear by it.

Yeah, they fit the bill for everything that I have read. I can't believe the guy at Cycle Gear talked my wife out of the Pirelli and into the Dunlop.

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