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Old 5th July 2014, 13:05   #1
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Smile Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Hi,

Will be picking up my Thunderbird 350 in a week or so. I had two queries regarding the same.

1. Is it a good idea to change the tyres as soon as i pick up the bike. Looking at slightly wide tyres as I will be riding a lot on the highways. Also, which ones are good and where can I get them in Bangalore?

2. Need a full face helmet. Something which has a scratch proof vizor, is airy, sturdy (good quality) and preferably is matt black. Also, something which looks good on a WOMAN!

Any help on this is appreciated. Thank you in advance.
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Old 5th July 2014, 15:30   #2
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapna gurukar View Post
Hi,

Will be picking up my Thunderbird 350 in a week or so. I had two queries regarding the same.

1. Is it a good idea to change the tyres as soon as i pick up the bike. Looking at slightly wide tyres as I will be riding a lot on the highways. Also, which ones are good and where can I get them in Bangalore?

2. Need a full face helmet. Something which has a scratch proof vizor, is airy, sturdy (good quality) and preferably is matt black. Also, something which looks good on a WOMAN!

Any help on this is appreciated. Thank you in advance.

The Thunderbird in my opinion has a rear tyre which is quite wide enough for all highway rides. Infact, i ride a Electra which has the slimmest tyres of the lot but I still find them to be very competent on long highway rides. If you go in for a wider size, the engine will now have to rotate a tyre having a wider footprint and this in turn will give you lesser initial acceleration and also slightly less fuel economy. My opinion would be to use the standard OE tyres; they are more than adequate! No idea about the helmets though
Welcome to the RE family!

Last edited by rahul4321 : 5th July 2014 at 15:32.
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Old 5th July 2014, 15:45   #3
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

For tyres look for Michelin, Pirelli.
In Indian brands CEAT/MRF is also a good one. I would suggest you to avoid Dunlop from my friends prior experience.

Personally I think the thunderbird comes with 120/80 x 18 with MRF Zapper tyre. MRF OEM tyres are good enough for normal riding conditions.I do not think you will find much change untill you opt for a Foreign brand like Pirelli and Michelin.
No need to change OEM tyre if its a MRF.

For Helmets:
I woud suggest to have a white instead of black because of the visibility it provides.

Or you can go for Matt Black and paste a lot of Reflective tapes on the same for higher visibility.

LS-2 or AGV are good brands to go for. Opt for Full-faced helmets only. I hope you have already planned for a riding jacket,gloves and Knee guards and a good pair of shoes. These are the minimum required safety gear recommended for Indian highways.
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Old 5th July 2014, 19:28   #4
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

I would suggest you to stick to the OEMs as well.. they do a good enough job.. Although Ive heard that CEAT tyres are good as well.. one issue ive frequently faced with my RE is punctures!! they are a huge pain and I suggest you to use some tyre sealant like Slime (link below)..

http://www.slime.com/

Cheers and Goodluck!!
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Old 6th July 2014, 12:02   #5
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Thank you for the valuable advice. Looks like the tyre change seems a bad idea for a start.
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Old 6th July 2014, 21:02   #6
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Sapana, The Thunderbird has spoke wheels. Moreover it is a cruiser than an outright performance machine. I have faced no problems with the MRF Tyres on my TBTS 500 clocking close to 7K Km of riding in 20 months of ownership.

However, in case you want to change the stock wheels and go in for alloys then you may consider Pirelli/ Michelin. These are better in terms of grip and Tubeless tyres are always better than tube type tyres. The downside is that most alloy wheels do not go well with the character of the bike.

Helmets are a personal choice. Visit a few stores and take your pick.

Welcome to the club and happy riding.
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Old 7th July 2014, 09:20   #7
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Congratulations Sapna for your new thunderbird arriving this week!

I bought Thunderbird 500 home two weeks ago. And did a DD Hills ride with other bullet friends. There were two places where I felt the stock tyres aren't any good.

After Dabaspete, there is road work for number of patches. At one such place there was slight slush - muddy. Even though I was going in one direction with 1st gear and then second, I never felt I was in straight line. The tyres gave a wobbling feel. Nothing wrong but not confidence inspiring it was.

Later while climbing the hill we had to win over few hair-pin bends. The cornering could not be done with the same confidence I would have driven in my car. So I felt it may be just my riding style or lost touch with bikes. (I was riding bike after almost 10 years! )

And otherwise no issues with stock tyres whatsoever. So my suggestion is to use the stock tyres for 500Kms or so. Ride few 50+ km on highway and regular tar roads with twists/ watery surfaces and see if that is not an issue. And change tyres only if you don't like them. But not to alloys and tubeless etc. Instead just simply use better quality tyres of other makes - this will keep your budget in check. TB comes with front and rear disc brakes. Changing stock tyre with rim to alloys need experienced and stable hands to perform that modification which a rarity in itself.
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Old 7th July 2014, 09:52   #8
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

There you go. Picked it up from mobike008's thread

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motorb...ml#post3435739
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Old 7th July 2014, 16:00   #9
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapna gurukar View Post
I had two queries regarding the same.

Congratulations on your Thunderbird!
To answer your questions,

1. It's usually a practice to change the tyres as soon as you are out of the showroom so as to get a good exchange price on the OEM tyres. The Thunderbird is shod with 120/80-18 rear tyres which, I personally feel should do a pretty good job.

2. Have you tried out the AVG helmets at the RE showrooms? They are available in Full face and Open face in Matt Black with MLG decals. I personally liked them, though I found them a bit pricey.

Any chance you've picked the Thunderbird Stone?

P.S. I've booked a Thunderbird 350 too, and plan to buy one of the Matt black helmets myself.

Last edited by ampere : 13th December 2016 at 16:07. Reason: Trimmed quoted post
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Old 8th July 2014, 10:13   #10
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

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Originally Posted by Wins28 View Post
Congratulations on your Thunderbird!
To answer your questions
From all the responses I have got here and on RE forums, looks like the tyre change is a bad idea!

I have picked up the Thunderbird Stone (if Matt Black is what you mean). I did see the AVG helmets at the RE showroom and I did like them but unfortunately they did not have a size for me. I have to check with the other showrooms in the city.

Thank you all for the help and for the warm welcome! Appreciate it!

Last edited by ampere : 13th December 2016 at 16:07. Reason: Trimmed quoted post
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Old 8th July 2014, 11:03   #11
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Default re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapna gurukar View Post

I have picked up the Thunderbird Stone (if Matt Black is what you mean).
Yes, I meant the Matt Black and I asked since you were looking out for a Matt Black helmet . I too have booked a Thunderbird Stone (Matt Black), didn't like the other two colour options available, besides this one stood apart from the lot, but I seem to be have some apprehensions about the maintenance of this colour with regards to scratches etc. Please do share your experience and views on this and oh, do let us know once the Bird arrives!
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Old 9th July 2014, 18:02   #12
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Default Re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapna gurukar View Post
I have picked up the Thunderbird Stone (if Matt Black is what you mean).
Great to hear

I too have the Stone (matt black) colour! Hard to maintain and hence did the paint protection immediately - I have it covered in my initial ownership thread here. And never polish! Good luck with the bike and many happy miles with smile
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Old 9th July 2014, 22:51   #13
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Default Re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Hi Sapna,

Very good to know you've bought a TB.
Please do not give looks a high priority when shopping for a helmet Try out Ls-2. I use the one with flip up front and twin visor (outer is plain, while inner is tinted). Makes for a practical helmet with decent dust & noise insulation.

I have changed tires on my TB to Ceat GrippXL 90/90 R17 upfront, and Ceat Vertigo Rage 120/80 R18 at the rear. This change was done after about 5,700 kms, and I still got a good Rs. 2,000 for the old MRFs. Not even one puncture after nearly 6k kms on the MRFs. The ceats are doing a good job so far, ridden about 600 kms on them.
Wider tires would be quite unnecessary. The max you'll go to would be 130 at the rear - the benefit in terms of grip would be limited.

Consider a change post the 5000 km mark, I suggest. Just enjoy the ride till then, maybe focus on the riding gear

Wish you all the best!

Cheers,
Sam
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Old 10th July 2014, 08:57   #14
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Default Re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

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Originally Posted by samarth.bhatia View Post
Very good to know you've bought a TB.
Thank you Sam! As suggested by all of you veterans on the forum, I am going with stock tyres. Will think about a change later on. As regards the riding gear, I am considering picking up only a helmet and gloves now. Will think about the rest when required.

Cheers!
Sapna

Last edited by ampere : 13th December 2016 at 15:59. Reason: Trimmed quoted post
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Old 10th July 2014, 09:13   #15
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Default Re: Tyres for the Thunderbird 350

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapna gurukar View Post
As regards the riding gear, I am considering picking up only a helmet and gloves now. Will think about the rest when required.
Its recommended to spend at least 10% of your bike price on the safety gears. Since you have helmet and gloves, you will need riding shoes if not boots and a good jacket that has reflective liner and basic armour. The total wouldn't cross 6-7K INR. Not that you have to get this on your first ride out of showroom but definitely before first free service
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