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Wheels & Tyres


A significant issue when fitting a sidecar to a motorcycle is the suitability of tyres. Motorcycle tyres are extremely good at what they do on a single track solo bike, but may be less suited to the very different requirements of the bike being permanently upright during use. This does not mean to say that motorcycle tyres compromise safety, or indeed performance to an extent that they should not be used. Indeed, some sidecar outfits may well be better retaining a bike orientated approach as far as tyres are concerned.

Specific tyres are still available for sidecar use, and designed to fit onto motorcycle wheels. However, problems can arise with the variety of wheel sizes now featured on many motorcycles. It is not commercially feasible for specialist sidecar use tyres to be made available for the many permutations. This can means that standard fittment tyres with likely wear quickly resulting in cost consequences. Some motorcycles may accept alternative, more suitable motorcycle tyres for sidecar use. As ever, information may have to be gleaned from sidecar websites, or from knowledgable owners.

A more common approach is to fit car tyres, usually on special, or adapted wheels. The great variety of available car tyres makes this viable and attractive because of these tyres being cheaper, plus usually offering greater mileage. The downside can be initial cost of the wheels, but this should pay dividends if a sidecar outfit is a long termer, and particularly if the aim is to get some miles on the clock.

A very useful reference for all things wheels and tyres is the Wheel and Tyre Bible website;

This provides information and insight regarding tyres, plus calculators for such things as changed speedo readings as a result of fitting different size tyres. Such information also assists with gearing calculations, which may be useful when considering a sidecar outfit.

Site last amended Apr 08 2021 |

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