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Tire failure

greenie

Member
Member
y457orpk

5,500 miles on a Michelin Commander rear tire. I don't expect the photo to show but there are brown strings sticking out of the sidewall. I would have taken better pictures but I'm pretty sore from the get-off.
 

Bud

Member
Member
I got nothing.  Send it to me and I'll get it up.

Don't make a feller all bad! 😋
 

Bud

Member
Member
Here ya go Bill.  Y'all heal up soon!!
 

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bobct

Member
Member
Wow, glad you weren't hurt bad enough that you couldn't to tell this story. The brown roping looks to be foreign for tire cords to me. But it seems high odds for a puncture from road debris would impact in the tread groove and exit from a tread groove, stranger things have happened. If you bought and had the tire installed by a business I would tow the bike there and have them investigate the cause, if not reach out to the seller and ask for their regional rep contact for the mfg.
 

boomer

Crotch Rocket
Forum Subscriber
Holy crap! :-\
That's not wear or age. That's a manufacturing defect.
Rest and heal.
 

greenie

Member
Member
The Dairyland (insurance) rep says that it is very difficult to get any satisfaction from tire companies. Michelin isn't a US company so that makes it more difficult.
The odd thing was there was no handling issues prior to the failure. Usually I can feel a wobble. Those brown strings poke out of a dozen tread grooves, all on the same side.
We are hurting units. Wife will probably be in the hospital a few more days. Thanks for the thoughts...
 

rwulf

Guest
Guest
Contact Michelin and ask for the rep to look at the tire In the past
I have found them to be fair and reasonable.
 

m in sc

Guest
Guest
contact local dealer or shop, get area reps name, go that route. I've been down this road with Avon. also not a us company but they made it right.  heal fast.
 

TireguyfromMA

Member
Member
Can you tell us if the tire was installed by a shop or did you do it yourself?  That is a really weird looking failure, the separation of rubber and the cords sticking out like that?  I've had a couple of instances of tires that would not seal on the bead or the bead had a kink in it, probably from some impact or rough handling during shipment.  The customer contacted the manufacturer directly in both cases and was sent a new tire. 

In addition to contacting Michelin directly, you should also go on NHTSA website (link attached) and enter complaint just in case this turns out to be a recall for a bad batch of tires.

https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls#tires

Good to hear you and your wife are going to be okay!
 

bobct

Member
Member
Didn't realize you were two up. I hope she and you heal up and gets better soon. You guys are in our prayers.
 

greenie

Member
Member
Thanks Bob,
I'm home with 5 broken ribs she's still in the hospital with broken ribs, 1 collarbone fracture and a broken clavicle. She's in good spirits - I made her laugh a few times yesterday - it doesn't hurt when she laughs. I'm hoping she'll be home this weekend.  (She's as tough as a boiled owl) We'll both recover.
Tireguy -
I purchased the tire from Revzilla in late '19. The tire was installed late fall/early winter 2019 by a shop (Yamaha Dealer)  I have used for years, I brought the wheel in and reinstalled the wheel with the new tire. That tire took us from Laredo to Cancun and back in February and March - no issues whatsoever. 4,000 miles ridden in Mexico and 1,500 back home afterwards. The tire had about 5,500 miles on it. I checked the pressure a few times since I've been home and it was always right on.
The strings poking out in different places is odd. I am pretty gimped up so I couldn't get down close to examine the whole tire.
 

Strawboss

Member
Member
Wow, sorry to hear this, glad you are able to tell us though. Getting better is more important than a tire now, so that's a low priority till you are both well. Good luck with the tire company when you decide to do that.
 

greenie

Member
Member
Thanks!
Dairyland is offering $3,039 for the bike. I pay $500 and they deliver it to me as salvage. Not a bad deal. I have a '98 parts bike.
 

danmcdermott@me.com

Member
Member
Greenie,

I am so sorry to hear of the injuries and also so happy to hear they are not much much worse. Going down on a motorcycle seems to be rolling the dice (corners, oncoming traffic, tailgaters, inattentive drivers, hard obstacles, right turn vs. left turn etc.).

Advice is worth what you paid for it. As such, it seems reasonable for you to consult an attorney to evaluate potential liability (i.e. manufacturing issues).

Regardless of how you move forward I am so happy to know you and your wife are recovering.

Antibus

 

Bud

Member
Member
Greenie said:
Thanks!
Dairyland is offering $3,039 for the bike. I pay $500 and they deliver it to me as salvage. Not a bad deal. I have a '98 parts bike.
I'd be happy with that.  Glad you don't have to fight with the insurance company! :great: :great:
 

greenie

Member
Member
I have the bike home now - sure looks like it was a defective tire. I found this on the web...
The plaintiffs argue the tire, the Michelin Commander II, was defective. The odd thing is all the brown strings that somehow came through the tread along the circumference of the tire. Really weird. I have always respected Michelin and have their tires on my truck and travel trailer. I emailed Mchelin on Monday - no response from them 4 days later. 

“With respect to the design of the Tire, at the time it left the control of Defendant, there were safer alternative designs,” the suit states.
“Specifically, there were alternative designs that, in reasonably probability, would have prevented or significantly reduced the risk of injury to Decedent. Furthermore, such safer alternative designs were economically and technologically feasible at the time the product left the control of the Defendant by the application of existing or reasonably achievable scientific knowledge.”
Some of the ways the tire was allegedly defective, according to the suit, include:
- Improper adhesion of the steel belts to surrounding material resulting in tread belt separation and catastrophic failure during normal use;
- Failure to incorporate nylon overlays, nylon belt edge layers, nylon safety belts, gum edge strips, spiral wraps or other similar available counter-measures to reduce the hazard of tread belt separation;
- Failure to incorporate an adequate belt edge wedge to reduce or eliminate belt edge separation and tread belt separation;
- Failure to incorporate adequate steel to rubber bonding (skim stock);
- Lack of proper antioxidants and antiozonants to prevent aging of the rubber compounds;
- Failure to incorporate an effective inner liner; and
- Failure to incorporate a proper anti-degradant package.
The plaintiffs are seeking to recover wrongful death damages.


I called the attorney that handled this April 2015 case and am waiting to hear back from him about how the case ended.
 

Bud

Member
Member
Pretty interesting reading there.  I'll be watching.  I've got a set on my 01.
 

A.Rod

Member
Member
Greenie wish you,and your wife a speedy recovery. I also have Michelin tires on all my vehicles, and 02 c10 with Michelin Commander on the rear I will definitely be watching.Rod
 

greenie

Member
Member
Hi Rod & Paul,

Thanks for your well wishes. I've gone through 5 or 6 of the Commander II's without issue. The tires are hard, high mileage tires that do break traction too easily. The load rating is one of the biggest pluses load rating 77 or 908 pounds - which we need on trips.
I've had problems with Shinko and Avon rear tires but those gave me a warning with a low speed wobble and a noticeable run out. This Commander though failed quickly and without any notice. The strings that poke out along where the tread meets the sidewall is really odd.
I emailed a request for someone from Michelin to look at the tire Monday evening and have not heard a word from Michelin. Next week I'll try again.
I'll post any news here.
 

greenie

Member
Member
The law office that handled the fatality a couple of posts ago contacted me for pictures, accident report, and discharge papers tonight - at least they are interested, Michelin not so much.. coming up on two weeks since I first contacted them and I haven't heard back from them. I'm not a litigious person but something obviously was wrong with the tire.
I still don't remember the actual get off. I stayed off the rear brake and got slowed down but the bike was really squirrelly with the back end coming around. Maybe I braked the front too hard. The bike was on it's right side with the front tire pointing to the travel lane and the rear tire to the ditch. Maybe it high sided. The next thing I remember I was standing by the bike. Both helmets have rash on the right side.
I almost hurt more now than I did 17 days ago. Legs, knees, shoulder. I got a good thrashing. The wife is hurting too - more than me...
I bought an upper fairing, new, right color for $630 plus tax. Everything used on Ebay is all busted up. I'm still gimped up and weak, a friend will help with the wrenching this Monday. I need to get back on and ride again sooner rather than later.
Dairyland has been absolutely great. I had passenger insurance so that will help cover deductibles. We might even come out even... The passenger insurance was only $6,000! When I think of the women I've given rides to over the years thinking I had good coverage.... I didn't. Could have lost a lot.
I'll keep updating... 
 

greenie

Member
Member
Louis Power Sports, Greenland Texas via EBay  I've been watching for months - they had 3 2004 main fairings all along, now Ebay says they have none.
This bike was pristine when I bought it - I was doing some service on it, had the center stand up on a few 2x8 pieces, tractor bucket behind and I was going to raise the front wheel by strapping the rear to the tractor bucket... Well... seated on the tractor I thought I would just move the tractor ahead an inch for a better angle on the strap and over she (the formerly pristine bike) went. I could have cried. Three C-10's and never before did one go over...
 

connie_rider

Member
Member
Greenie, I've seen a couple of bikes being offered as "come and get it" on the Forum.
Might be possible that one of them is near you?
If so, move your engine to one of them and have a clean {not a salvaged} title.

Ride safe, Ted
 

rev ryder

COG Executive Director
Member
A salvage title just lets folks (potential new owners) know that the vehicle has been previously deemed a TOTAL LOSS and thus a lower value is typical.  It does NOT mean the vehicle was beyond repair or unsafe if repaired, but it does open the door WIDE to those questions and thus those vehicles will always have a lower value.  At the current value of the C-10 and considering their advancing age, it certainly doesn't mean to a 14+ year old bike what it would mean to a two or three year old bike.
 

greenie

Member
Member
We're getting better - thanks for asking. We took a good threashing - lots of discomfort still. The wife is worse off than me - she's still non committal about ever riding again but in time I think she will. Spent Monday wrenching with a friend and the bike is looking good again. Today I hope to try it out. The fairing frame was tweaked and we straightened it out as best as we could...
Michelin has been awful - they continually drop the ball and each time I call I go through everything from the beginning with a different third worlder. I'm disappointed after thinking Michelin was a quality tire - but they don't seem to care
I will file a report with NHTSA this morning - thanks for the reminder.
 

Bud

Member
Member
Good to hear you're both healing. Sorry to hear that Michelin is dropping the ball. Having to repeat your problem over and over again would drive me up the wall!!
 

greenie

Member
Member
An update... The bike looks and runs beautifully. I have gone on progressively longer rides - Saturday (9/26) I rode about 150 miles on mostly blue highways towards the coast. The blueberry fields are red and the foliage is changing fast. It was a warm day except close to the ocean the sky was overcast and the air damp and chilly. I'll continue to ride as late as the weather allows.
There was a bit of a learning curve getting back on the bike - the first ride my speed was about 40 and gradually my confidence returned. I was afraid that if I didn't make the effort to ride now the long winter would have set some pretty limiting fears - now my memories are of fall rides rather than the crash. For now I ride alone - I don't dare to ask Joyce nor has she allowed me to buy her a new helmet yet. I hope in time she joins me for rides.
My wife is still in a lot of pain. I hope to get her to to a chiropractor soon - she has some pretty bad Scoliosis. We go for evening walks but she is sore. Physical therapy stirs up new pains twice a week. My liver took a hit and blood tests they took at the hospital right after the accident were very concerning but I retested last week and all is healed.
My knees weren't the original injury but they sure hurt now. I don't sleep all that well because I'm stuck to mostly sleep on my back. I am amazed that how quickly my muscles atrophied - 5-6 weeks of recovering (doing a lot of reading, sitting, and computers) left me very weak and recovery is very slow. I think our broken bones have healed, now it's a matter of fighting aches as we return to being active as we were previously.
Health insurance has been wonderful - I had pictured spending an hour a day processing bills - but aside from a few co pays it's been very easy. I'm on medicare now and I haven't seen or heard a word about any bills for me.
No news on the Texas lawyer but Michelin has been in correspondence. Dairyland insurance was very good too. I had previously written that the passenger insurance only covered $6,000 of medical bills but that was wrong - it's much higher.
 

greenie

Member
Member
Update: The photo shows the inside of the tire - a split that goes 75% around the inside of the tire. I submitted a claim to Michelin in Greenville South Carolina. The claims manager referred me to Diaryland (motorcycle insurance) and it appears that Dairyland has paid much if not all of my wife's hospital bills - which are approaching $50,000. Michelin doesn't seem too interested in seeing the tire which I find very disappointing; Michelin ought to be interested when a tire fails as this one has. The lawyer in Texas that handled a similar case 4 years ago with Michelin does not seem to be too interested either. Maybe he's just slow but I have not heard from him in quite a long time.
My wife still is very sore and has limited range of movement in her arms nine weeks later. I did work up the nerve to ask her if she wanted to go for a short ride with me yesterday - it was a beautiful 70 degrees. She said no. I rode alone as I have been doing lately. Tomorrow she sees a chiropractor - hope that helps. She has PT twice a week. The wife had a tooth that was broken in the accident fixed... $500 out of pocket but I submitted the bill to Dairyland - we'll see if they reimburse us.
Last Saturday I went for a ride along the route we took the day of the accident. I feel competent and am taking time to intentionally improve all riding skills. Part of the ride was on the interstate highway past where we crashed - I cruised comfortably at 80 mph and briefly at 90mph.
y5b53lcf
 

Bud

Member
Member
Best wishes to the both of you. Sounds like it's going to be a while before she's interested in getting back on the bike. Pic doesn't show up. Send it to me and I'll get it up for you. Hang in there!
 

Bud

Member
Member
Here's the pic Bill sent me. All I can say is shame on Michelin.
 

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Daytona_Mike

Guest
Guest
Was the date code in spec? I think I see 11/19 . Very new. I have not seen that type of failure before other than something physical dug into that side wall.. screw.. bracket.. something. Did the other side show any signs of deterioration on the side wall? Is this the same tire shown earlier with the cords poking out of the treads? I see no signs of overheating. Wow. That's very strange. You would think Michelin would want to look at this.
 

connie_rider

Member
Member
I would be more persuasive with Michelin.
Contact the seller where you bought the tire, and get them involved.

Ride safe, Ted
 
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greenie

Member
Member
Daytona Mike - There are 3 cuts in the sidewall but they appear not to be from an object but from the sidewall disintegrating. The other sidewall is fine - no damage. The date of manufacture is the 11th week of 2019, I bought the tire in July and had it installed at the end of the riding season of 2019. The cords do indeed appear on the same side - poking out from grooves in the tread.
 

greenie

Member
Member
I found a local attorney who was interested - today we met with an engineer who closely examined the tire for over an hour. The engineer felt that the bonding material had failed. Much attention was given to the crumbs that remained inside the tire - the crumbs were brittle and appeared to indicate that two parts of the tire had failed internally. The next step is the attorney contacting Michelin to advise that a suit is being initiated and to offer Michelin the opportunity to examine the tire here in Bangor. A chemical engineer with a background in rubber will need to examine the tire as well. At this point the attorney feels this is a strong enough case to pursue.
This particular tire (Commander II, 150/80B 16) was made in Thailand the 11th week of 2019.
 

zarticus

Member
Member
I would let them examine the tire but do not let them take it. Funny how things can mysteriously disappear when a possible lawsuit is involved
 

greenie

Member
Member
Update... The tire was sent to Michelin for examination and a puncture was found on the crown of the tire. There was no evidence that either I or a hired engineer (who carefully examined the tire) found previously but I accept responsibility for the accident. That day I had checked the tire pressure before the ride and rode about 110 miles before the crash. I was riding on milled pavement for a mile or three just prior to the accident and attributed some of the handling oddities to the grooves in the pavement. Had the puncture occurred on regular pavement I most likely would have felt the tire softening and pulled over before all the air was lost. The milled pavement may have captured a steel object that punctured the tire and with 20:20 hindsight I should have slowed down on the milled pavement from the 75 mph (posted speed) I was traveling at.
My pride would have preferred that the tire had a defect - but the fault lies squarely on me. I have previously traveled as fast as 110mph on grooved pavement (Alberta - went on for ever) and developed a cocksure attitude about grooved roads that bit me and my wife.
There was nothing wrong with the Michelin Commander II tire and I will continue to rely upon Michelin for the bike and other vehicles.
The wife, BTW took her maiden ride with me a short time ago - her first time on 2 wheels since early August. We are planning a fairly long motorcycle ride to Cape Hatteras this spring (approximately 2,300 miles round trip).
 

2andblue

Member
Member
Given my recent large pothole experience here in eastern PA I am headed to the dealership to examine the ever so slightly dented wheel and also get their take on tire replacement.
I have no idea how my tire did not blow (Michelin Road 5, about 5K miles). Obviously the tire in my case crushed completely to allow for wheel to be dinged and I’m concerned if there is internal damage.
We do ride spirited and like anyone else a failure could be catastrophic.
 

Bud

Member
Member
Good to know what caused the tire to fail Bill. I've got the same tire on my 01. Makes me feel better about the tires I'm depending on. Hats off to you for reporting that it wasn't the fault of the tire. There are folks that wouldn't do that. It's good to hear of your wife's return to riding. I've been a proponent of getting back on the horse that threw me off. With that said, after an unpleasant experience ice skating, I said never again.
 
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