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Tires for a beginning rider

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So I am just getting into riding and have an xt350 as my starter bike. I am looking at getting new DOT tires for it and was wonder what you guys would recommend for mostly wet dirt/gravel with pavement riding between. (I say wet due to the fact I live on the west side of Washington state) I feel the more experianced riders can get away with probably a more street suitable tire offroad just becasue they can handel the bike better as it slips and slides (but maybe its the complete oppisite) . Thank you in advance for your suggestions and thoughts.

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1st questions to help you with info:

Post up your current tires. What % on/off road? Do you like them?

From your post as it stands imo:

bias offroad MT21 front and rear. D606rear, MT21 front.

bias onroad, Kenda270.

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Rear is an off brand from china Tire King pretty knobby. Says dot on the side. The front is a knobby motocross only. I plan on a 50/50 mix. The 50 off road will logging roads and dirt trails. I think I am leaning towards a 606.

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I plan on a 50/50 mix. The 50 off road will logging roads and dirt trails. I think I am leaning towards a 606.

Good choice! a 50/50 tire is 50% no good when you need the traction in the dirt, just ask my Dr.:smirk:

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I'll probably get pummeled for this, but I'm not a fan of the D606. The Kenda 760 rear tire gives much better grip on the slick Ohio clay, but won't last as long on the pavement. But it's considerably cheaper (and easier to mount) than the D606 which makes it a no-brainer for me.

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I ride washington too. D606 SUCKS. namely the front. The rear D606 is a great tire, just pricey. MT21 is EH.. not very good.. overpriced

IF you dont mind shelling dough.. Pirelli MT16 rear and MX Mid Hard 454 front 90/100

or if you're cheap - ARTRAX TG4 rear SE3 front from motosport.com

D606 rear and MX51 front is good for the hardcore Dunslop fans. I run this on my XR250, as a trial. They work well, but too pricey

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It depends on how much you're riding and what. If you're just going point A to point B to get offroad, then go for something aggressive. 50/50 tires are a waste of money if you're riding in anything slick, you'll fight the bike the whole time and not have any fun. If you are commuting a fair bit, off road tires will be a bit dangerous for a new rider. Even an experienced rider like me can skid all the way through a yellow light at a 6 point intersection (yes, I was lucky) on a D606. It's not really meant for the street, but it will hook up in the dirt which is what i care about.

That being said, I run a Dunlop D606 on the rear, and a full knob up front. I like an intermediate tire because the knobs are a little bigger and closer together. I don't want to lock up my front tire in a panic stop on the street, but DOT fronts seem to kinda suck.

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I am finding spotty info on what sizes fit. The bike shop has plenty of 120/90 but very few 110/100 which is currently on it. What size are you all running? Does a 120/90 even fit?

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I ride washington too. D606 SUCKS. namely the front. The rear D606 is a great tire, just pricey. MT21 is EH.. not very good.. overpriced

IF you dont mind shelling dough.. Pirelli MT16 rear and MX Mid Hard 454 front 90/100

or if you're cheap - ARTRAX TG4 rear SE3 front from motosport.com

D606 rear and MX51 front is good for the hardcore Dunslop fans. I run this on my XR250, as a trial. They work well, but too pricey

Some people want to stick with DOT and MX51, MX Mid Hard 454 are not street legal.

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I run D606s and it is all rock, with a lot of wet, here. What mud there is tends to be clay. They work great, I went out slopping around yesterday for a few hours. I doubt I'll get more than 2500 miles out of the rear, if that, but the traction and decent road grip from such a dirt oriented tire makes that ok by me.

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120/90 = 110/100

screwy huh.

you want a big rear, 120/100 or 130/90

dont get a D606 front whatever you do

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Arlington is a great place! We just had a project down there past the hospital, back down on the river before it gets into town. I've only had a chance to explore around there breifly but I want to get down there and head east!

Thank you all for the help! I think I'm going with the mt16 front and the 606 rear. Same combo the owner of the bike shop has on his KTM. I'd let you know what I though but my riding experiance is limited to probably a total of 20 miles my entire life, so it probably wouldn't mean much.

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no trust me, it will... good tires make all the difference sometimes. When you're stuck at the bottom of a slippery hill climb you can't make it out on 50/50 tires. Plus the wrong tires will slide all over the place in heavy mud or on rocks. You're making a good choice, just get a good feel for them on the street when you get them. Learn your braking limitations, especially with the rear.

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that will be an excellent combo. yeah, arlington is pretty nice. I dont ever plan on leaving.

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