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Old Aug 31st 2017, 03:24 AM   #1
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Trackday tire PSI checking

Hi all, this is something that's recently come to my attention. Normally when I do trackways, I ensure the PSI is to my liking before the first session when the tires are cold. And then for the rest of the day, I don't touch it. However, usually by the end of the day, my feel on the tires gets gradually worse even if my tires are still in great shape. I always chalked it up to the heat rising on the track, tire degredation, ect, but is it because I'm not looking after the PSI in my tires? If so, how do you make sure the PSI remains constant when after a session, the tire temp and PSI jumps and fluxuates?
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 05:00 AM   #2
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It could be a lot of things affecting your feel - those you list and more. How are you defining "worse feel"? What is it that seems different?

PSI will fluctuate with temp. Check your pressure before a session, and then after a session - you should see an increase of 3-4 PSI typically - so your "hot" PSI. It's an easy thing to rule out. Check the pressure after every couple of sessions, make sure it's pretty consistent. I'd expect a little bit of variation. Not every session is the same.

If you want to keep temp (and PSI) more constant, get tire warmers. But make sure you have tires that can handle warmers. Some tires can't. You'll overheat them, and they'll end up worse.
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 07:25 AM   #3
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i check my tires hot (under warmers) before the first session, then first thing when i come back in after every session, with adjustments accordingly.


for you to start out cold is a good baseline, but the real value to look out for is hot after the session.
like ghostdog said, warmers are a good option. and in the long run, they are a money- and lifesaver. (get more out of sessions, have more confidence right away and more grip - less crash prone)
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 07:41 AM   #4
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What tires are you running? And what do you mean by the feeling gets worse?

Always set your cold pressure (and write it down) and then check your hot pressures after each session. As the track warms through the day and your pace gets faster you are going to put more heat into the tires. The tires could get too hot and become "greasy," therefore you may need to add psi.
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 08:18 AM   #5
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It depends how hard you ride but if you start off on street pressure and do a couple of sessions on track going fast then your tyres will be dangerously over pressurised. If you are just doing low novice group then it's probably perfectly fine but anything above that you should definitely be compensating by dropping the pressure and checking it after each of the first few sessions and again after lunch.

What tyres / pressure are you using and what group are you running in?
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 08:47 AM   #6
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Thanks all. I currently run Pirelli supercorsa but had the same experience on dunlop q3 in the past. I run them at 31/31 cold and also don't have warmers. I always thought they weren't worth it considering I use DOT tires.
Regarding the feel, i would say greasy is a good word for it. Also a little sluggish in the change of direction which could mean i have too big a contact patch and need to go up in psi as the day goes on. Hi-speed suggested that but then Royal, you say to lower the psi. So not sure if the best move but I have tried to lower the psi in the past and that definitely didn't feel better.
I guess i need to invest in warmers but as was mentioned, will they damage a DOT tire like the supercorsas?


-Jack
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 11:40 AM   #7
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You need to tell us what group you are running in? I'm guessing novice group in which case the front will likely go up to about 32-33 psi which is about right when hot, the rear is too high though and is likely to go up above 32. It should be around 28-29 psi when HOT straight after a session for novice , so you should start off with it at 28 maximum and check it as soon as you get back in. Faster guys usually run them at 26psi.

Again it depends on your group but tyre warmers basically save you tyres and money. A tyre will only deal with so many cycles of getting hot and then cooling again. Supercorsas are basically road legal track tyres so they drop off in grip pretty badly once used a bit. If you do a trackday on a set of supercorsas without warmers then you have pretty much had the best out of them during that day and they are going down hill from then on. A couple of trackdays without warmers and they are pretty awful as they have gone through too many heat cycles. If you are cruising mid novice group then they should last a few track days without any problems but anything faster I would seriously consider warmers if possible.

Note - the front and rear do the opposite things. As you go harder you set the front a little higher and the rear lower. I run 34fr/26r.

Last edited by royal; Aug 31st 2017 at 11:44 AM.
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 11:46 AM   #8
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You're in NJ. If you go to NJMP - ask Mark at Markbilt about tire pressures.
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 11:58 AM   #9
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31/31 cold is kinda high imo. But it's hard to find any consensus when it comes to tire pressures.

I also run supercorsas on my 1199 and I usually run 27R/29F cold in the afternoon. This gives me a pressure increase of about 4-5 psi hot. That has worked really well for me and given me almost no tearing. I've gotten 5 trackdays and 1700 street miles out of my rear tire so far, with plenty left (for reference my pace is at the top of intermediate).
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Old Aug 31st 2017, 01:29 PM   #10
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Woah, sorry forgot to tell you my group, I'm slow for group 3 but fast for 2. And yes I go to NJMP, I'll have to speak with Markbuilt, he just helped me with my suspension! Totally didn't realize the heat cycles were an issue with non slicks, def going to look into warmers. So far on these supercorsas I've done 3 trackdays and a day of canyon riding. I guess they're pretty much shot then considering the heat cycles but there's still a little bit of rubber left.

So just to be clear on the heat cycles, If I do 6 sessions per 3 track days, without tire warmers, that's like 18 heat cycles but if I had used them, I would only have gone through 3? Also, does queuing up for the track cool down the tires too much while waiting or is it negligible if you just had them on warmers?
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