Pablo's gs500 page
gsJack's opinion on tires for the GS
R1 taillight install on 89-00 gs500
Clear Taillight Lens for 01-03 Models
My Local Canyons
What's it worth?
Progressive fork spring install-the lazy way
Rear shock swap information
More rear shock info-SV650 install
Suspension tuning 101
Installing Suburban-Machinery SV650 handlebars
Install an SV650 headlight
Converting standard 1/4 throttle to 1/5 throttle
Installing LED's in stock taillight
Uber Fender Eliminator
R1 Taillight on 89-00 GS500
Speedo/Tach light replacement
Better handlebar grips
Installing Buell turn signals - Rear
Installing Buell turn signals - Front
Flush mount rear (stock) turn signals
Installing a 2001 Ducati Monster fairing
Fix a broken oil filter cap bolt
General battery info
A Wal-Mart sealed battery?
Chain Maintenance
Installing SV650 Chainguard
Spark plug information
Installing a GSXR front end
Installing a GSXR swingarm
Installing GSXR rear passenger peg brackets
Installing an OEM Bandit 400 rear hugger
Installing a Bandit 400 rear wheel
Installing a GSXR rear wheel-simple swap
Polishing your wheels
"The Mystical Art of Tire Reading" and other tire info
General tire info for the GS #1
General tire info for the GS #2
General tire info for the GS #3 - mixing brands/types
gsJack's opinion on tires for the GS
Gearing and sprockets
Slip-on mufflers
Slip-on exhaust : using stock SV650 muffler
Installing an R6 tail
Installing GSX-R600 stock rearsets
Installing CBR600 stock rearsets
Replacing stock front pegs with CBR pegs
Replacing stock front pegs with Katana pegs
Why re-jet a stock US bike
More on re-jetting your carbs
Jetting for 2001 models

GSJack has logged just under 70K miles on his GS and knows a thing or two about tires.

Any discussion of what tire width will fit what wheel width is meaningless without including the aspect ratio. A 130/90 tire will properly fit a 2.5" min rim. A 130/70 requires a rim at least 3.0" wide min.

Now, what does proper or approved size mean. First of all there are tire/rim regs that are mandated by governmental agencies and may or may not be enforced. These regs are worked out with the tire people and certain standards are agreed upon. A good ref source for general Rim to Tyre applications:

Additionally, the tire mfg have their own recommended rim widths for each tire they make. I don't know of any tire mfg offhand that doesn't approve the fitment of a 140/70 tire on our 3.5" wide rear rims, bias or radial. But also can't think of any that make radials in a 130/70 or a 140/70 size. Most have a 140/80 radial that will fit the 3.5" rims and fit our bikes.

Most radials start at a min 150/70 size, some no narrower than 160/70. The 150/70 is approved for our 3.5" rims by general tire regs, but is not approved by all tire mfg. Metz Z4 and Conti Contiforce are approved, Dunlop D205, Avon AV45/46, and Bridgestone BT020 are not approved for fitment of the 150/70 on the 3.5 rim. Even more interesting is the BT45 bias tire that is approved for this fitment for the H rated tire, but not the V rated one.

The 150/70 is marginal for the GS500 rim and for clearance in fitting it to the bike. Depends on which 150/70 it is.

I would not be concerned about much handling change in putting a 140/70 bias tire on my GS. The original 130 is the optimum size and will give good handling. Tires keep getting wider and wider to handle the ever increasing HP of motorcycles. A 130 will more than handle the power output of the GS. If you want better traction, then you want stickier rubber rather than wider tires.

The Sportecs are excellent sport tires. A very good choice if you are willing to sacrifice some tire life for better handling. I'm not. The 150/60 will fit the 3.5 rim according to general tire regs, Metz specifies a min 4.0 rim for it. Actually it measures only 143 mm wide on a 4.0 rim, less on the 3.5 rim. Looks like a good fitment to me for the GS500 along with a 110/70 front. I'd try them myself except for the tire life issue.

I was very happy with the Z4/Z2 combo last summer, but the new Avon Azarro AV45/46 ST tires are looking very good. Did you guys see the brief write-up on them after trying them out in the latest Cycle World mag? I would use the 140/80 size approved by Avon rather than the 150/70 they don't approve on my rim. So many decisions.

Special thanks to GSJack, who can be found contributing regularly on, and