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I recently picked up a 2008 GW with a set of tires that say Cobra on the sidewall, I'm assuming they are Avons? When starting a lean into a turn, either to the left or right, I can feel a very slight vibration in the bike which appears to be coming from the tires. They are fairly new with I'd say 75% of the tread remaining and don't show any sign of cupping. Is this normal for these tires?

thanks, Pat
 

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I ran Avon Cobra's on my 1200 Aspy and never had an issue. They were smooth and quiet. Now I've never run them on the 1800, so different weight, different geometry, I can't say there. What you're feeling may be a balance or even a bearing issue.
 

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What is "fairly new"? What's the date code on the tires?
 

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No that is not normal. Cobras are outstanding tires that ride velvety-smooth. I would check to make sure there actually isn't any cupping. It may be hard to see if it's just starting. It also may be a balance issue. Front should be run at 36-39 psi, rear 39-41.
 

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The Avon Cobra tires are of a fairly soft compound for sporty riding. If driven on the level, such as super slab trips, the center wears quickly and the just off center area tends to feather up (trailing edges of the sipes get higher than leading edges) and thus the noise when leaning modestly. The cure is some spirited riding with aggressive leaning and accel/decel in the corners. The front will do this too, eventually, but more of a feeling as if the road is rough than a noise.

I really liked Cobra, but they were/are? fairly pricey; so I mostly used B'stones on the 2002,

prs
 

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Check the tires for a belt separation. I sometimes see it on Cobras.
 

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Check the tires for a belt separation. I sometimes see it on Cobras.
Yep, Had it happen on my 2012 on a cross country trip. My rear was doing the same thing. Slight vibration and then this. This was the result at 70 mph. The older Cobras were problems. Quite a few separations like this. I think they changed them, as I have not heard of the problems on newer tires. They lost me though. I will never use an Avon tire again. I liked the tires up until this point!

366498
 

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Yep, Had it happen on my 2012 on a cross country trip. My rear was doing the same thing. Slight vibration and then this. This was the result at 70 mph. The older Cobras were problems. Quite a few separations like this. I think they changed them, as I have not heard of the problems on newer tires. They lost me though. I will never use an Avon tire again. I liked the tires up until this point!

View attachment 366498
I have no idea if they did a change; however, anytime I catch a separation, it is almost always a Cobra. About 2weeks ago I found another while doing a major service on a Wing. I too will not run them because of if. Plus they get so noisy on curves as they wear.
 

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I don’t know if it had anything to do with the problems being discussed here, but these tires have been upgraded and are now called Cobra Chrome.
 

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For what it's worth I'm on probably my 5th set of Cobras/now Cobra Chromes in a row without any separation or other issues. I also have not found them to be noisy when cornering with lots of miles, especially compared to other tire brands I have used. I can't recall which brand it was (Metzler Bridgestone or Dunlop), but they positively roared when leaned over with a good number of miles on them.
 

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I’ve always sworn by Mettzelers 880’s on my cruisers, but they suck on a GW. My brother put a set on his’02 GW and they delaminated shortly after during a trip to the mountains. Air pressure was still holding at 38psi, but the tread had come loose in one big bubble about 12” long. Spent all day trying to get it replaced. My friend had same thing happen with his Continental rear tire after only 400 miles. Bridgestones have been my favorites before going to 3 wheels.


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I have often said that the Gold Wing must be a tire manufacturer's nightmare as there have been problems from all of the makers of GL1800 specific tires right from 2001 and upward.

I ran quite a few Avon Venom R and then several Cobra none had such catasthophic failures, but I think everyone showed a slight separation of the tread end joints before hitting the wear bars. That never slight separation never affected performance, but was a flaw that made it easy to switch to Bridgestone tires. I tried a set of Metzelers on the 2002 and the rear was so horriblly noisy right from the first short ride (I even checked to see if I had it backward) that I trashed it before 2,000 miles. The front was "OK", IIRC.

prs
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The Avon Cobra tires are of a fairly soft compound for sporty riding. If driven on the level, such as super slab trips, the center wears quickly and the just off center area tends to feather up (trailing edges of the sipes get higher than leading edges) and thus the noise when leaning modestly. The cure is some spirited riding with aggressive leaning and accel/decel in the corners. The front will do this too, eventually, but more of a feeling as if the road is rough than a noise.

I really liked Cobra, but they were/are? fairly pricey; so I mostly used B'stones on the 2002,

prs
I rode the bike yesterday and the vibration is the most pronounced in the footpegs and not the handlebars. It does it when leaning into a corner on both sides but a left-hand turn may be felt a little more than right-hand. The rear tire is cupping slightly and has a manufacture date of 4216, so a little less that 4 years old. I'm beginning to wonder whether it is the back tire? Pat
 

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Yep, the sound and vibes noticed when leaning is typical of rear tire scalloping. Front cupping has a subtle feeling as if driving on chip coated roads; at least on the previous generation model. I have experienced neither on the new edition.

prs
 

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I had a set of Avaon Cobra's on my '06 for a while. I was on my way to Tulsa WingDing taking a non-freeway route. I am actually glad I was not on a freeway route because the tires became so badly cupped that the bike could not exceed 60 without feeling like it wanted to tare itself apart. I still had about half of the tread left at roughly 9,000 miles on them. I had new tires put on before WingDing was over. These tires do not go well with my riding habits.
 

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I had 3 rear Avons delaminate on the inside, they wobbled..Stones would be a better choice..
 
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