the new tire hunt

the hunt for new tires has been going on for some time now. the stock Dunlops that are on Selene have well over 13,000 km on them and are quite worn. the rear tire also has a plug that was the result of a nail picked up in Quebec. the search has been a battle of brands and prices, meaning i want a good brand at a good price. the Dunlops were great, but i want something better.

i've been all over the net and have even debated about buying my tires from the states and having them shipped to Canada. Cruiser Customizing always has great deals and were actually selling tires at 40% off regular price. i really didn't think i could get a better deal then that.

before i ordered, though, i figured i would check out a couple of local places and give them a chance. i'm all for sinking my money locally.

okay, tires sizes:

front: 120/90 R18
rear: 170/80 R15

tire brands:

Pirelli MT66 Route
Avon Venom
Metzeler ME880

i still chuckle at the fact that i had Pirellis on my Kawasaki 440LTD, but i digress. a few calls around town gave me these average prices (both tires, tax not included, in canadian funds):

Pirelli: $351
Avon: $396
Metzeler: $498

Cruiser Customizing was giving me prices of (in US funds):

Pirelli: $225
Avon: $340
Metzeler: $347

it was really looking good for Cruiser Customizing. i could get a damn good set of tires (Metzeler) for a heck of a lot less then any local place. even with the duty and exchange factored in, i would end up saving money.

then i called the last local place on my list. a place that i'd never seen before due to the fact that they are a little out of my way. a little place called Levesque Recreation. i hit them up with the brands and a few minutes later, they came back with prices:

Pirelli: $261
Avon: not listed in their books
Metzeler: $375

here is the real kicker...those are the straight prices with taxes in. sold! i couldn't believe the price difference.

i went down the next day to check out the shop and double check the prices. they are a small outfit with a small stock of helmets, tires and some parts. they do mechanical work on practically all makes and models (i could see a H-D and a snowmobile being worked on in the garage). there was also a beautiful boxer running around and investigating everything. he was behind the counter the whole time, but would stand up at the counter staring at you while chewing on whatever he could get his teeth on. i'll have to snap a picture of him when i pick up my tires.

so there you have it. it really does pay to shop around. it's a lesson that i have to learn time and time again. i'm famous for impluse purchases...ask joey...


Allen Madding said...

I'm quickly becoming a big fan of Metzler tires myself. Like you I did some shopping around unlike the sheep that take it back to the dealership for tires and found a small shop that's been around for 25 yrs that I am quite pleased with :)

Biker Betty said...

We just had to replace my front tire. It had gone bald on one side. My husband just went to the local retailer and got the best deal. My front tire got so bad, it was losing it's tire pressure and we were having to check it often. One day I checked it and there was no pressure, that's when my husband got the new tire. Now life is well with the new tire.

PS: Glad to hear that Joey is doing better. Please tell her hi. Any summer trips planned like last year when the two of you went to the states? Looks like our big trip will be the Grand Canyon, but my husband wants to rent an RV, sigh. I had hoped for a family trip like last year where my husband and I were on the bikes and the boys in the car. We all had fun.