Avon AM26 130/70HV18 (rear) as Double Dark review

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  • Avon AM26 130/70HV18 (rear) as Double Dark review

    I have posted a long term review elsewhere but wanted to post a complete review here.

    This was my first foray on the double dark side. I chose this tire as I did not see any reviews and well, it was cheap at the time $98 delivered.
    The tire started with 9/32 tread depth and I started with 41lbs. I used Dyna Beads (another first for me) to balance. The tire was mounted aligned with the rotation arrow.

    Now I played with the pressure on this tire testing anywhere from 34lbs to 46lbs. Ride performance was best at 41lbs. I wish I had just set it there and kept it there.

    When I was using lower pressures (under 40lbs) the ride was fine but it started cupping badly after only 6000 miles (basically 2K with lower pressures). With what others have said, I then moved the pressure back to 41lbs and kept it there. But the damage was done. I am convinced that had I kept the pressure at 41lbs from the beginning I would have gotten alot more miles out of it.

    I really did not start seeing wear until until about 3000 miles - again the lower pressures I am sure contributed to the wear.

    One annoying factor on the tire was what started to be a slight whine that simply got more annoying as time went on. I do have fork tunnel foam so I can't imagine what it would have been like without the foam.

    On wear:
    I started noticing wear around 3K but really could not measure it until 4K at 8/32 remaining tread. At 6K (noted above) the cupping was pretty bad and the tire wear was varied between 5/32 and 7/32 tread left. Again - if I get another one I will leave it at 41lbs. Once I reset the pressue back to 41lbs and left it, the cupping started to even out but never really went away.

    On traction:
    WOW - this tire stuck like glue on all surfaces throughout its life on my bike. And I rode in all sorts of weather from below zero to 104 degrees, from dry, gravel, wet, slush and the driving rain of the north west. Tire snakes were no problem from freezing to 100+ degrees. From a performance point of view this tire was perfect.

    Rim leaking issue:
    One cold morning I noticed my TPMS light on solid. Now I do have the tire reverse registered (thanks to Snoopy) so seeing it blinking every morning was normal, but not solid. In checking the pressures I found the front down to 36lbs (or so). So after checking the tire for a puncture I pumped it back up to 41lbs. In three days solid light again. So this time I tanked it bt could not find a leak. Three days - solid light.

    So I tanked it again. No leak. So I left it in the tank and went on-line to search for other leak detection methods. Now a little frustrated I went (with my close up glasses) and without disturbing the water checked again. Low and behold very small almost champagne like bubbles were escaping from the rim/tire seal for about 15 inches along one side and about 8 inches in a different spot along the other side.

    We pulled the tire off (a fellow GWRRA member has a tire machine) and I noted alot of corrosion inside the rim. I decided to replace the tire and jumped down and picked up a Stone G851 (bad choice). We cleaned the rim with brass wire wheel on a drill and mounted the tire. Given the tire was OK for months, I am at a loss at to why quite suddenly it decided to leak or how such corrosion found its way into the rim.

    So I only got 9700 miles out of it.

    Wobble:
    I thought this tire contributed to the GL wobble, but I was wrong. Once I got it into my thick skull to tighten the all balls tapered stem bearings correctly, the wobble was gone. And it stayed gone for the life of the tire.

    Overall:
    While the noise and cupping were issues, in doing the math this tire was still cheaper to run than the G709 stone. Performance was better than the stone in driving rain but they were pretty much equal otherwise. Would I buy another? Probably - but there are alot of other double dark tires to try .

    Attached is the tire with the cupping.
    Click image for larger version

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    ...gene
    2012 GL1800 NAVI, GWRRA 367875
    Darkside #1511 - Bridgestone DriveGuard 195/55RV16 RFT

  • #2
    Originally posted by genedjr View Post
    ...Wobble:
    I thought this tire contributed to the GL wobble, but I was wrong. Once I got it into my thick skull to tighten the all balls tapered stem bearings correctly, the wobble was gone. And it stayed gone for the life of the tire.
    ...gene
    Gene, what torque spec did you use on the bearings?
    Richard
    Darksider #390
    Murgie's FAQ

    Comment: (For off-topic replies)


    • #3
      Originally posted by TravelinLite View Post

      Gene, what torque spec did you use on the bearings?
      23 ft/lbs - I did change my bearings to the All Balls tapered bearings.
      ...gene
      2012 GL1800 NAVI, GWRRA 367875
      Darkside #1511 - Bridgestone DriveGuard 195/55RV16 RFT

      Comment: (For off-topic replies)

      Darksiders

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