Shinko SE890's on my 2006 GL1800.
Have heard ratings that are radically opposed why I believe what matters is my own. The fact that tire price is not that of the big players is irrelevant when it comes to personal safety, reliability, handling, etc. For me this is where value is. I have not had any of the horrible experiences some claim to call this tire "junk". My experience with 890's is nothing less than EXCELLENT. The cupping, road noise grip among other many other downsides from the OEM tires is what junk really is.
The SE890's grip like glue to the road, noise none, predictable, fantastic control and everything you can expect from a good tire.
I believe that to rate any tire first, the bike must be in tip top condition. In the case of Goldwings, there are many high mileage uncared bike out there that wont make it with whatever tire is put on it much less, with a sticky tire. I say this out of experience as I also ride a BMW K1300GT and hard. My Goldwing with upgraded suspension and solidly maintained I can also ride it hard with the SE890's that I never dreamed possible with the OEM's.
Downsides: Front wears more than rear. With 4K's on the set, the rear shows no apparent signs of wear. The front has at best, 2K more to go. Fact, soft stick compound. Truth: I love it and could care less if all I can squeeze out of the front is 6K. Why, because possibilities of recovering from a sliding rear is recoverable as compared from loosing front grip. We all know the turnout when our front goes. The SE890 front compound is astonishing fantastic even though wear is not. Facts and math. @ $96 bucks each front plus mounting & balancing a second tire for 12K total miles, is a great buy for the added performance value. This assumption is given based on rear lasting also 12K miles. If this is true, all 3 tires (2 front & 1 rear), your still on the winning total out of pocket side, plus all the benefits compared to leading brands.
Last but not least, after 2 years I change tires no matter how much rubber they may have. Tire compound dries and hardens over time. keeping safe is worth more than a set of tires. I say this because those who change their old dried out tires for fresh ones will notice, whatever the make, important handling difference.
Last but not leased. Grove design is crucial and of core importance when selecting tires. Read and learn how these groves work and why they go one and another way. You do not need to become an expert to know what will work best for your ride and dissipate water. Hydroplaning besides being a terrifying experience, is a complex subject that all and every tire & rider is subject to when she or he exceeds limits.
RIDE SAFE AND BE ALWAYS HAPPY
Ran this as a front tire on my Sporty chop for over two years. Commuted 40 miles round trip, five days a week for a year, then a 1200 mile road trip, four months more of daily riding, then a 2500 mile road trip. I now commute almost 50 miles daily and it's finally time for a replacement. Great tire. They wore very oddly, however (back, inside of outside knobs went first) earning them four stars.
Good tyre, start the burnout in 2nd or 3rd, get some good revs going, heaps of smoke pours out, however the tyre does leave bits of rubber everywhere..... and I mean everywhere. I ran mine at 28psi... then drag raced on it .. great day, crowd loved it!
Originally I happened into Shinko tires when I bought a 1982 Honda FT500 Ascot - they came with the bike unmounted. I was skeptical since I did not recognize the Shinko name. With a pair of Shinko 712s, I rode over 5,000 miles on my Ascot before selling it with plenty of tread left on the tires. My old Ascot always handled as though it were glued to the ground so I installed a second set on my 09 Suzuki TU250 on which I had run through a set of Dunlop D404s. Again, I was astounded by the overall performance of the Shinko 712. It felt far more secure handling with the Shinko tires than with the OEM tires or the D404. Again I ended up selling the bike before I could see how long they would last - well over 3,000 miles though and they looked great.
Wet traction with these tires was impressive in my opinion with either bike although the TU250 was easier to lock the rear wheel by accident with it's rear drum brake.
I now have a set of Shinko 712s purchased just a few months ago (07/14) and have them installed on my commuter bike - a 1987 Suzuki GS450. So far, it seems like these are the same great tires I've been riding on for years! Every bike is a little different but so far my experience with Shinko 712s has been nothing short of great.
On my 3rd set for my Tiger 800. Absolutely phenomenal tires. Daily rider in all weather conditions. Put them thru the paces in wet, driving rain, dry, off road, construction and snow...... LOVE THEM! good life, great handling and superior performance.