If you are like most motorcycle riders, the only time you pay attention to your tyres is when they have visibly gone bald.
You need to know that tyre condition plays a big part in your motorbike performance. And it directly affects your safety while riding on Singapore roads.
The last thing you want is to get a skid, or worse, crash, simply because you didn’t pay attention to your tyre conditions. Think about the potential insurance claims and premium hikes.
In this blog, we want to share the essential knowledge that you need to understand tyres and tyre maintenance to ensure you always get a good and safe ride out of them.
Know the tyre structure
Maintenance won’t make sense if you don’t know how the tyre is built. Here are four basics of the tyre anatomy.
The tread is the most obvious part of the tyre. It is the patterned outer rubber layer that meets the road surface. The different patterns are designed for different types of use. As a rule of thumb, the smoother treads are designed for street rides and the rougher, chunkier ones are for off-roading.
Beneath the tread is the carcass layer. It forms the “flesh” of the tyres. This part is made up of steel or fibre cords that run from one side of the tyre to the other. The fibres are placed in bands and are positioned in either one of two patterns – radial or bias ply.
Tyre designs originally started off with a bias ply where the bands are placed at an angle. Radial ply is a later innovation where the bands run directly across from one side of the wheel to the other (i.e., from bead to bead).
The bead is the part where the tyre clings to the metal wheel. It is strengthened with steel cords so that the tyre fits perfectly onto the wheel. This prevents slipping as the wheels turn and leakage of air in tubeless tyres.
The sidewall is the part that carries the whole load of the motorcycle, including yours and your pillion’s weight. You will also find codes imprinted on the sides. They hold a lot of information about the tyre make called tyre designation. They are two types of coding system – metric and alphanumeric.
Assuming that most riders in Singapore rely on the workshop people to help us choose the right tyre, we will not go too much into the details. Here is a quick look at what information the codes hold.[img src=”http://www.directasia.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/tyre-structure.png” align=”default” src_raw=””]
Image credited: en.wikipedia.org