Deep bike nerd babble. The contentious Kenda K270 tire.

Unless you are wayyyyy into moto tires, or just like how I rant about shit, this may not be interesting for you. I’ll leave that ball in your court.

So, when I got my KLR this past June the tires were used up and I did what all newbies do when confronted with such a dilemma, read forums and ask questions to find out what to get. Holy shit! Never could I have imagined the world of contention and confusion that the topic Dual Sport tires could present.

Wanting a good 50/50 that would be affordable I went with the Kenda K270, one of the tires most polarized in reviews. “Love it!”, “Those things are unsafe and a hazard at all times!”. Fuck. Whatever, they’re cheap.

Now that I have 5000 miles on the pair in a pretty solid 60/40 dirt-road balance I have come to a solid conclusion.

These things fucking blow harder than a pivot twink at a foam party at Silverado.

To be fair, the rear is actually pretty good off road. Good hook up, does mud and sandy stuff well, bla bla bla. The fun begins when you get a flat spot going in the tread and the funky side knobs become a steep angle pivot on paved surfaces. Makes it looser in the back than above mentioned twink while trying to hit the twisties. Goddamn horrifying.

The front does well on the paved, having a much more rounded profile than the rear, but is a worthless piece of wandering shit off road. At first I was willing to go with the wandering till it “broke in”. All these miles later it looks hardly worn, but despite varied air pressures (down to 16 psi) this fucker has tried to kill me in almost every surface type ridden. Most disconcerting was the recent experience of trucking down some nice hardpack dirt with a few wet spots in it and no matter the line taken around, through or far away from the wetness the goddamn thing wanted to go down.  Having Mt biked for over 20 years I know the front can wander a great deal and have learned how to go with the flow. This is different. This hunk of shit goes from solid to fucked instantly, no middle ground.

To tie this in with Commerce, I mean Christmas, day I’m happy to say I just ordered an IRC TR8 Battle Rally which looks like a sweet skin and will hopefully take some of the uncertainty out of the front end.

Well, there is that. Let me know if you have any experience with the K270 and what you think.

Rotella, mofos!

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