Tyre advice: Cause of stepped wear in tyres

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Q. I have a problem in that my tyres - particularly the rear - wear in 'steps'.
A clear step down develops across each groove.

This has happened on my last two bikes - a TDM with Dunlops, then Metzeler rubber and now on my ST1300 with Bridgetone BT-020s then 021s and now Michelin Road Pilot 2s.

Clearly the only common denominator is me.

So what am I doing wrong? My riding is a mix of solo scratching about and two-up continental touring. 

I always check the tyre pressures and run at recommended psi.
Brian Castle, email
A. We spoke to Michelin and Bridgestone about this phenomenon and they both seemed to think that the "heel and toe" wear you're describing is usually caused by either underinflation or overloading.

Michelin have been in contact with the Pan owners club and it apears that in the case of the Pilot Road 2, some people have a problem and others don't, which they believe points to the pressure/overloading issue.

Repeated use of the ABS can have some effect, but all tyres do it to a degree as there is always a leading edge and trailing edge to any tread, with some patterns showing it to a greater degree.

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Marc Abbott

By Marc Abbott