A strong competitor not only prepares physically for every race but also invests in the best motorcycle and accessories. Cutting-edge equipment can be the difference between winning and losing. Don’t be left in the dust from fellow racers because you aren’t using tire warmers.
A tire warmer is a simple piece of equipment – the complexity lies with the tires themselves. The chief benefit of using a tire warmer is maintaining a hot temperature on the surface rubber of the tire between 170-210 degrees F, contingent upon tire brand and compound. As a result, a hot surface increases the coefficient of friction of the rubber, improving its ability to grip the track surface.
Heat-Soaking the Carcass
Almost as important as getting heat into the surface rubber is heat soaking the carcass. In other words, the tire is hot and stable throughout the carcass and interior of the tire. For example, a tire with a surface temperature of 200 degrees has approximately 175-degree heat inside the tire’s airspace.
A tire’s carcass is more flexible and consistent when heated to race temperature. During braking, cornering, and accelerating, the tire gets deformed. The tire will perform equally at the beginning of the race as it will during the middle when it’s warmed beforehand.
Cold Tire Accidents
These are more frequent in sub-zero temperatures, but the same thing can occur on scorching days due to overenthusiastic throttle application. When choosing harder compounds for higher track temperatures or rough surfaces, the tire still starts out cold. The cost of warmers is minimal compared to an off-track incident. Ensuring consistent tires 24/7 in all weather conditions is just one more advantage.
Saving Heat Cycles
Tires that are heated and then cooled result in hardening. Warming the tires between sessions on the track prevents this. A temperature adjustable warmer enables you to turn the heat down to 130 degrees F, keeping the tires hot enough to stop them from going through a heat cycle without overheating, and adding to the lifespan of the tires.
Moisture changes the chemical composition every time the rubber is heated. Tires warm rapidly on the racetrack in minutes. This pushes the moisture toward the surface quickly. During cooling, the moisture evaporates and the tire dries and hardens, diminishing grip. When tire warmers are applied, they maintain the integrity of the polymers reserved in the compound of the rubber. It’s clear that a preheated tire delivers a much more consistent hold.
Setting hot pressures in the pits is beneficial. Tire pressure will grow when the tire gets hot on the track or in the pits from using the warmer. You can ensure that your hot pressure will be right by increasing the temperature of the tires before the race, while at the same time preparing the tire for mid-race condition.
Getting the hot pressure set and being able to measure how much growth occurs is another way to tune the tires with a warmer. During a tire change, it’s advantageous to use a preheated tire from the warmers because it ensures that both the hot pressure is set properly and the tire is hot. Therefore, the staggered set is where it should be.
As you can see, tire warmers provide countless benefits for modern racers. Knowing that you have proper heat buildup eases the fear of cold tire crashes and enhances the performance of your tires while extending their lifespan.