Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Which gets your trust/money?

Avon Cobra
9
33%
Dunlop Elite 4
17
63%
Something else
1
4%
 
Total votes: 27

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Happytrails
Posts: 828
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:13 pm
Location: Tarentum, Pennsylvania
Motorcycle: 1991 Goldwing 1500 SE
2018 Ural GearUp

Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by Happytrails » Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:44 am



My bike came with E3s that i replacex with Avon Venoms that i really liked. Running Avon Cobras now and they are good too. Good grip, good in rain, doesnt chase tar snakes like the Dunlops tended to do and they are quiet.


1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

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MikeB
Posts: 2396
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:54 pm
Location: Tacoma, WA
Motorcycle: 1998 - GL1500 Aspencade.
2003 - GL1800A

Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by MikeB » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:14 pm

Happytrails wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:44 am
My bike came with E3s that i replacex with Avon Venoms that i really liked. Running Avon Cobras now and they are good too. Good grip, good in rain, doesn't chase tar snakes like the Dunlop's tended to do and they are quiet.
That is precisely the experience I have had with Avon's versus the Dunlop's. Avon Cobra's may not last quite as long as the Venom's but neither of them chased the tar snakes or followed the grooves in the road like the Dunlop E4's do after about 10,000 miles of wear. Because of that, I replaced the radial E4's I had on my GL1800 after about 12,000 miles and they were only about half worn.
I have bias ply E4's tires on my GL1500 now as well and after about 9000 miles, they are showing the same tendencies as the radial E4's. I'm convinced that it is due to the harder rubber down the center of the tread on both. The center wears slower than the crown of the tread and a ridge develops between the center tread and the crown tread. That hard center seems to be tracking the tar snakes and grooved pavement. Very un-nerving.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Happytrails
Posts: 828
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:13 pm
Location: Tarentum, Pennsylvania
Motorcycle: 1991 Goldwing 1500 SE
2018 Ural GearUp

Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by Happytrails » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:28 pm

I kind of recall Metzler used to be an option, not sure if they still are. Didn't they make 880's or something that fit on goldwings. And I thought some people were running Shinko's as an economical option. And I didn't get to try them personally but I sort of recall Michelin Pilot GTs or something like that. Everybody said those were the best but they stopped making them before I got my bike. Sorry I can't recall for sure my memory isn't what it used to be :)
Last edited by Happytrails on Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

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WingAdmin
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1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
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Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by WingAdmin » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:31 pm

Happytrails wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:28 pm
I kind of recall Metzler used to be an option, not sure if they still are. Didn't they make 888's or something that fit on goldwings. And I thought some people were running Shenko's as an economical option. And I didn't get to try them personally but I sort of recall Bridgestone making something call roadpilots (not the new ones) or something like that. Everybody said those were the best. Sorry I can't recall for sure my memory isn't what it used to be :)
I wouldn't recommend Metzelers. Many people with Goldwings (including quite a few people on this site) have had them delaminate at speed, causing a sudden blowout. They appear to not be able to handle the weight of our bikes, despite their claimed load rating.

User avatar
MikeB
Posts: 2396
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:54 pm
Location: Tacoma, WA
Motorcycle: 1998 - GL1500 Aspencade.
2003 - GL1800A

Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by MikeB » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:38 pm

Metzler ME880's suffered from this problem, over and over again:


The Shinko's were indeed lower in cost but also short lived. The tread would separate and cause a bubble in the tread. Usually within the first 5000 miles.
Michelin had Pilot GT's that were excellent tires but they are no longer made for the GL1500.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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StrongEagle
Posts: 29
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Location: Houston, TX
Motorcycle: Formerly 3 different Honda Valkyries, now looking at a 1200 GW.

Re: Avon Cobra, Dunlop Elite 4, other?

Post by StrongEagle » Thu Jan 31, 2019 5:06 pm

Snowmoer wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:37 am
If you decide to put Avon Cobra's on, stay away from the radial rears. Your bike calls for bias ply anyway, but some people still put radials on a 1500.

Unless Avon has fixed the problems with the radial Cobra's, they are prone to tread seperation. There are many posts about this and I am one of them. My rear tire developed a bubble and blew out at 70 MPH. The tire only had about 8K miles on it and was only half worn. This was on my 1800.

I have not heard any problems with the Bias ply Cobras.
I can second Snowmoer's comments and add detail. I ran Avon radials on my Valkyries and had two instances of belt separation on my rear tyre. It made me go to Metzelers after what I considered to be a rather cavalier attitude on the part of Avon.

As the belt starts to separate, you'll get a "smile" type of crack right in the middle of the tread, about 2 inches wide. Nothing else will change for quite a while. Then, if you don't notice it over time, you will start to notice it when the tread starts to delaminate slightly and you get a 'bump' in the tire. That's definitely noticeable.

Avon quickly replaced each tire, including mount and balance and I didn't pay any pro rata charges because the tires were pretty new. What I didn't like though, was Avon's answer to my question, "How come you folks don't exercise a bit better quality control?" The answer was, "Well, it doesn't happen very often, we don't think the separation is dangerous, so it's just cheaper and easier for us to take care of any failed tires."






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