The recommended front tyre pressure for all big Indians are 36psi, except for Springfields. Springfields are recommended to run 46psi - 10psi higher! Why?
I was under the impression, Springfield utilised the same frame as Chieftain and Roadmaster. It appears, that is not the case. The Springfield is running a unique frame with different trail to Chieftains and Roadmasters.
The most concerning part is that some people, under certain circumstances have experienced, 'death wobble'. It is not isolated to Indians. Some Harleys experienced death wobble in the past.
Neon from the US Indian forum posted this.
"My lady just bought this bike (Springfield), and when I saw the front tire psi specs at 46psi, I knew something was off. But there it was, in the manual, and also stamped on the label on the triple-tree. In search of answers, I got online and read what everyone was writing. This led to more confusion.
New owners are scratching their heads, and conflicting information is coming from racers, riders, mechanics, manufacturers, and dealers....but nobody has the definitive answer.. Why 46psi?
I got tired of this controversy, so I called John at San Jose Spirit Motorcycles (an Indian dealer), where my GF got her 2017 Springfield. John called John (yes, same name, different guy) at Polaris (Indian) R&D in San Francisco and received the absolute final answer: 46psi IS the correct pressure in the front tire on this particular make and model Here is what I learned:
The Indian Springfield has a brand new chassis. It's the first of its kind. Regrettably, it would seem the pre-production research did not go far enough before the rest of the design was basically completed, so there is a potentially serious design flaw. At higher speeds, and with enough weight in the back, such as full saddlebags or a passenger, the "trail", or front tire contact patch with the pavement, can potentially cause the bike to get caught in a mortal front-end wobble. As any rider knows, these are nearly impossible to recover from. That's "game over." The only way to get past this was to reduce the "trail" so a smaller road contact patch on the front tire remained, and the only way to reduce the trail was either to completely re-engineer the bike, or to increase the tire pressure. Well, they weren't going to re-design the bike, so they worked with Dunlop and experimented on various tire pressures for a solution. They finally determined that 46psi is the magic number that eliminated this deadly wobble risk. To protect themselves, Polaris (Indian) has a manufacturer's recommended front tire pressure for the Springfield stated as 46psi. Running at a lower pressure violates the warrantee, and more importantly, releases them from liability in the event of this front end wobble. This is confirmed both in the owners manual, the service manual, and on the stamped specs on the triple tree label.
I did more research, and discovered that the maximum recommended tire pressure stamped on the sidewall of a tire is NOT the maximum pressure it will safely hold. Riders should follow the recommendations of the VEHICLE manufacturer. Dunlop worked closely with Indian to come up with the 46psi number, so it's been blessed both by Dunlop and Indian.
So, the correct pressure for an Indian Springfield front tire is 46psi. Remember, this restricts the replacement tire you can use to only the Dunlop Elite3. It's the only tire that has been confirmed to run at this pressure by both manufacturers, on this bike, to eliminate the front-end wobble issue."
In reply to Neon's post, IndianDog posted this:
"Spot on Neon. I have always run 46 psi on my Springfield front tyre. Well if something went wrong Polaris would have to put it right. I had my Springfield serviced today, the dealer told my that 46psi was too much and set it to 36 and adjusted the tyre monitor to 36 psi as well. I told him it should be 46psi and had him check his manual. He then thought it was a misprint. So I had him call Polaris, he then corrected the psi and set the monitor back to 46 psi.
I advise all you guys to run at 46 psi on your Springfield and do not be alarmed when the tyre warms up and reads 52 psi on the monitor."
Some Springfield (with 16-inch front tyre) owners assumed that 46psi is a misprint and have been running 36psi. It appears, 46psi is a 'correct' tyre pressure. 😳