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Hello Fellow SV Riders,

I'm in the process of rebuilding an SV650 I bought that has sat for quite a few years. I finally got her running and am looking to replace the tires. The rubber that's currently on there are Michelin Pilot Powers (really old..).

In my sourcing of parts for the restore, I picked up a set of Galfer Braided front lines, master cylinder and front tire/wheel for very little. The tire is a Dunlop Roadsmart III in excellent condition. Now, I need to buy a new rear tire. What do you suggest?

I intend to do 95% street riding but have interest in taking an intro to racing course to further develop my riding ability (I've been riding for about 10 years). Would sport touring tires (so I pick up a matching Roadsmart III for the back) be sufficient for the occasional track day, especially for someone so new to it and not taking it to the extreme limits?

Or would you recommend I pickup a super sport rear (e.g., Michelin Pilot Power RS or something like that) for would the mismatched profiles be very detrimental on a track? Or bite the bullet and buy two super sport tires?

I'm definitely operating on a budget, but would love your opinions.

Cheers!
 

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Hi there. It's up to you really. If you do go down the sports tourer tyre route then you have to be aware of their limitations at the track. Which is fine if your a level headed sort of person, but if you think you might be tempted to get a bit carried away by the occasion (or someone coming past you on a slower/smaller bike lol!) then give yourself that extra safety margin and get some pure sports tyres.
I race my SV but also take my Ninja 400 road bike to the track about once a year for some fun with friends on their road bikes. The Ninja comes with Dunlop GPR300's which are pretty much a budget tyre and I have to be really cautious with them at the track. I can get into a slide situation quite quickly with them which is OK(ish) if your used to controlling slides, but it's risky... Because you will be at the beginner stage you should be fine though as long as you dont get a rush of blood to the head! :LOL:

Regardless of which tyres you go for enjoy your time on track, it's a different experience to the road and I find it quite exhilarating. One of the best things I've got into for a long time.
 

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I'm taking my SV out to track this Friday with RoadSmart IIIs on it. I'll let you know how it goes. I reached out to the Dunlop rep and he suggested 30 psi front and 28 psi rear (cold) would be a good starting point for a track day.

Also read that Ron Haslam Race School uses the RoadSmart IIIs on their bikes, so they can't be all that bad (Honda Ron Haslam Race School). I'd say if you're on a budget and doing mostly street, just get a matching one for the back, and you'll appreciate the longevity. As you've said, you won't be taking it to the extreme limits on track anyway, so should be fine.
 

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Following up on the previous post, I really liked the feel of the RoadSmart 3s on track. Ran with 30 psi front and 28 psi rear cold on a brutally hot day, temperatures in mid 30s (celsius), feels like mid 40s with humidity! Comparing the RoadSmarts with a friend's Q3+, the profile on the Q3+ allows for more lean angle and it is a grippier tire sacrificing some longevity, but at my skill level in the novice group, that wasn't a limiting factor at all. In my opinion, RoadSmart 3 is a good starting point, get your feet wet, get a number of days under your belt to improve your skill, then something like the Q3+ or Q4 if you feel like you need a more track focused tire.
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Well your definitely getting it over, no worries there! That's good the tyres were up to the task. Keen for another crack?
 

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Well your definitely getting it over, no worries there! That's good the tyres were up to the task. Keen for another crack?
Absolutely! I have 6 more days booked through to October at various tracks before packing it up for winter. I won't be riding the SV on the street any more, that's for sure. I'm in Toronto - lots of aggressive drivers and the traffic is brutal - I won't miss it. Only thing I'm considering changing with the setup is maybe a bit more weight on the front. Preload on front is good - had a rubber band on the front and adjusted as the day went. Will try upping preload on rear shock a bit next time and see how that feels. Curious to know how it goes for you with the clip-ons? Did you slide the forks up through the top triple clamp to lower the front end at all? Some advice I got yesterday on track was that it would help on the SV though I don't really feel comfortable messing around with geometry tbh.
 

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Absolutely! I have 6 more days booked through to October at various tracks before packing it up for winter. I won't be riding the SV on the street any more, that's for sure. I'm in Toronto - lots of aggressive drivers and the traffic is brutal - I won't miss it. Only thing I'm considering changing with the setup is maybe a bit more weight on the front. Preload on front is good - had a rubber band on the front and adjusted as the day went. Will try upping preload on rear shock a bit next time and see how that feels. Curious to know how it goes for you with the clip-ons? Did you slide the forks up through the top triple clamp to lower the front end at all? Some advice I got yesterday on track was that it would help on the SV though I don't really feel comfortable messing around with geometry tbh.
It's winter time down this part of the world so no track riding till September. I'm going to start off with the forks sticking 10mm out of the top yoke as this is what I run on my current Gen 2 race bike. It's pretty easy to adjust quickly at the track. Will also experiment with different rear shock lengths till I'm happy with the balance. I've got the forks away at a suspension tuner at the mo, he's fitting traxxion dynamic damper rods and working his magic on them. Will be interesting to see how they feel.
Sounds like your well keen, good on ya. (y)
 

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Wow! Thanks so much for your feedback.

I had ordered a Bridgestone S22 Rear but am going to return it based on your post and switch it for a matching Roadsmart 3. Toronto here as well!

At my skill level (which is zero at this point) looks like the Roadsmart III will more than be enough. Super informative and thanks for taking the time to post. Which schools did you do?

Following up on the previous post, I really liked the feel of the RoadSmart 3s on track. Ran with 30 psi front and 28 psi rear cold on a brutally hot day, temperatures in mid 30s (celsius), feels like mid 40s with humidity! Comparing the RoadSmarts with a friend's Q3+, the profile on the Q3+ allows for more lean angle and it is a grippier tire sacrificing some longevity, but at my skill level in the novice group, that wasn't a limiting factor at all. In my opinion, RoadSmart 3 is a good starting point, get your feet wet, get a number of days under your belt to improve your skill, then something like the Q3+ or Q4 if you feel like you need a more track focused tire.
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It's winter time down this part of the world so no track riding till September. I'm going to start off with the forks sticking 10mm out of the top yoke as this is what I run on my current Gen 2 race bike. It's pretty easy to adjust quickly at the track. Will also experiment with different rear shock lengths till I'm happy with the balance. I've got the forks away at a suspension tuner at the mo, he's fitting traxxion dynamic damper rods and working his magic on them. Will be interesting to see how they feel.
Awesome! Let us know how you get on with the setup once you're back out there. Hmm maybe I'll experiment with sliding the forks up a bit next time - seems easy enough to do actuallt... Though with the Gilles Tooling handlebars I have on, I don't think I have much clearance from bars to top of forks. A switch to clip-ons in the off-season might be on the cards.

Sounds like your well keen, good on ya. (y)
Cheers! I did a racing school and endurance races a couple of years ago - fell in love with it all - but then had to sit out all of last year with a really bad knee injury and surgery. Felt amazing to finally be out there again!
 

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Wow! Thanks so much for your feedback.

I had ordered a Bridgestone S22 Rear but am going to return it based on your post and switch it for a matching Roadsmart 3. Toronto here as well!

At my skill level (which is zero at this point) looks like the Roadsmart III will more than be enough. Super informative and thanks for taking the time to post. Which schools did you do?
I did Racer5 intro back in 2018, then 6 of their endurance race events. 2 on 125cc and 4 on 250cc. Here's a write-up I did after the intro program (Racer5 anyone?) and some footage from the endurance race (
).

I'd strongly recommend Racer5 intro program because you can really work on the basics on those 125s and 250s (they're under new ownership this year so not sure if anything has changed). Also heard nothing but great things about FAST Riding School though it is a bit pricey. I think at this point in the season FAST will be your only option. That being said, the track day at Shannonville yesterday was my first outside of a racing school and it was a great environment too - skill level in green group varied widely, as did the bikes from Honda CBR250R to Aprilia RSV4 (!) - some knew the lines well and others (myself included) were more trying to figure it out for the first time - some pro riders were willing to show novice riders the lines at a comfortable pace. I'd recommend some instruction first but either way you'll develop your skills with time on track.
 

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Awesome! Let us know how you get on with the setup once you're back out there. Hmm maybe I'll experiment with sliding the forks up a bit next time - seems easy enough to do actuallt... Though with the Gilles Tooling handlebars I have on, I don't think I have much clearance from bars to top of forks. A switch to clip-ons in the off-season might be on the cards.


Cheers! I did a racing school and endurance races a couple of years ago - fell in love with it all - but then had to sit out all of last year with a really bad knee injury and surgery. Felt amazing to finally be out there again!
Yeah the clip ons are pretty much a must have for racing to get your upper torso low enough for cheating the breeze and good body position for cornering. I really wanted to purchase a '19 or '20 X model with the clip ons as standard but we only got the '18 model here which doesn't have the four pot calipers, which was a deal breaker for me.

Like yourself, I plan on doing a racing school as well. I've book courses in Australia with the Cali SBK school for October. At the present time we cant travel there though... fingers crossed. 🤞
 

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Yeah the clip ons are pretty much a must have for racing to get your upper torso low enough for cheating the breeze and good body position for cornering. I really wanted to purchase a '19 or '20 X model with the clip ons as standard but we only got the '18 model here which doesn't have the four pot calipers, which was a deal breaker for me.

Like yourself, I plan on doing a racing school as well. I've book courses in Australia with the Cali SBK school for October. At the present time we cant travel there though... fingers crossed. 🤞
Yeah in hindsight I think I might've been better off with the X as well, just for the stock clip-ons. We got the 2019 X here in Canada but not the 2020 - they're running a bunch of those 2019 Xs at one of the race schools here which is cool. Def agree about the brakes. For your clip-ons did you use stock cables and reroute or get shorter ones?
 

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Yeah in hindsight I think I might've been better off with the X as well, just for the stock clip-ons. We got the 2019 X here in Canada but not the 2020 - they're running a bunch of those 2019 Xs at one of the race schools here which is cool. Def agree about the brakes. For your clip-ons did you use stock cables and reroute or get shorter ones?
I did the reroute around the other side of the headstock, worked out good .
 
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