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My new 09 with 150 miles on it will wander on every tar snake I go over. Tar snakes as we call them, are small patches of tar that the road crews put in cracks to seal the road surface. When doing any cornering I have never had a bike that followed or squirmed more than this one on these factory tires. Is itjust me or have any of you experienced this on factory rubber? And yes tire pressures are correct. Any help?

Bob 09 Indiana
 

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I'm almost 600 miles into my 2011, and was thinking to myself on the weekend how good I thought it was in handling the tar snakes compared to my last bike, a vstar 1100 cruiser. That thing would go wherever it wanted when the back tire caught one.
 

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Tar snakes are just nasty. I may be due to the freshness, or the current temperatures. I don't like them on my heavy cruiser either. I also hate rained on paint stripes when cornering, woo hoo that was a surprise.
 

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same thing on my 07 wee

i have noticed the same thing on my bike...i want to know if it's a common issue as well? is it because of the the factory trail wings?

maybe some veterans will post on this and give us some insight
 

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Could be tire brand/type but I think tire pressure has something to do with it too. A firm tire seems to track straighter and pass over irregularities better than even a slightly soft one. I notice a far crisper response in general when I'm aired up to 38-40 psi than even a lower 30's pressure. Just my 2 cents worth...
 

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My observations are tires and bike matter

My prior bike was R80 never snaked much at all and when I switched to my o6 Wee (had tourance) I was surprised at that snaking on heavy tar snakes on pass over Sierras - fully loaded and dual made me extremely nervous - hated it.

It seems to me that it was similar only slightly less snaking on my 07 original trail wings. I now have Road Pilots front and rear and it seems to snake a bit less although I have to admit those snakes over the pass were taller than any I have seen since so not sure on that.

I am guessing it is a combination of bike and tire just from my limited experince and fact that other posters said they had other bikes that were worse.

In my most recent trip I ran into a lot of crack seals that were very flat to the road and that were such dense and intricate patterns that I am guessing may have been placed with a computer guided machine that (could not have been hand done from look and amount of them). They were also more grey color so I am thinking maybe different seal material and more controlled application than that heavy crowned tar I am used to seeing. I was moving through there and no issues at all so I hope I see more of those type in future.
 

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Just got done riding with a group of guys in Eastern Oregon. There were three wees and three vees. There were Tourance, Ankees, Shinko's, And maybe one other brand but all of the bikes squirmed on the tar snakes.
 

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I think there a couple reasons this may be happening. First, it's summer time, so those snakes are stickier than usual. However, I believe the actual culprit may be the size of that front tire. Both in diameter and width.

I remember riding my first bike a Ninja 500R and the front tire was a 17" 110. The rear I believe was a 17" 140, very narrow contact patch front and back. It tracked tar snakes and those irregularities on the freeway, very unnerving. When I got my second bike, SV650N, it never tracked or was fazed by by tar snakes or freeway irregularities, it was always stable.

Since the Wee has a 19" front tire that feels light and is rather narrow too, perhaps it may track these snakes a lot easier than a wider front tire?

Just my two cents worth.
 

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I remember while taking a Keith Code track School in Topeka, mentioning to Keith that the tar snakes bothered me. His reply was, "they're only a couple of inches wide".
Didn't change my perspective much but it was interesting to get a pro"s thoughts.
I also noticed when I was riding dirt trails with my grandson, I was more comfortable on a slipping bike. Since I haven't ridden in the dirt for several years I'm back to cutting washers out of the seat. Ian, Iowa
 

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