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Avon Roadrider Universal vs dedicated rear fitment

Discussion in 'Norton Commando Motorcycles (Classic)' started by Fast Eddie, Aug 2, 2018.

  1. Fast Eddie

    Fast Eddie VIP MEMBER

    Oct 4, 2013
    I extracted this tyre discussion from the Comnoz valve spring thread, so as not to derail his thread!

    The conversation was regarding the fact that using a dedicated rear will increase tyre miles by a 3rd when compared to a Universal tyre. Given the fact that rear tyre wear can be rapid and therefore an issue, this seems important (to me at least).

    Question from Mr Rick was:

    “And is there a dedicated 19" rear tyre you can recommend?”

    Not from the Roadrider range unfortunately.

    That’s why I use an 18” rear. It allows me to use a dedicated rear 18” and a front universal 19” that have exactly the same rolling radius, thus maintaining the intended geometry, providing great handling, and giving the best possible tyre life.

    Works for me !
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 7, 2018
    Nater_Potater, JimC and worntorn like this.
  2. gtiller

    gtiller VIP MEMBER

    Nov 5, 2012
    Yep, it’s an 18 inch rear for me - in my opinion, anyone that calls out differences in handling has been sucked in by the placebo effect.

    An 18 inch rear gives you a lot more choice though which is good news.
    Matt at cNw put me on to the Bridgestone Battlax BT45's - they are a great tyre (tire)
    - 100/90 19" on the front
    - 120/90 18" on the rear

    The rolling circumference is nigh on identical to the factory standard, the bike sits level, the centre stand works, and the speedo is accurate.

    I like the Bridgstone because the tyre wall is a little bit skinnier than the Avon - it means you can run a wider rear tyre with no fear of fouling the swinging arm or chain rub.

    Plus the 100 on the front doesn’t foul the mudguard (fender) like some other tyres do.

    Most of all I like the fact you can run a true front and rear pair - no universal fit tyre, which means plenty of tread and good wear on the rear!!!

    We’ve set up this same configuration on a few bikes now, and I’m really pleased with the setup!
    Nater_Potater and JimC like this.
  3. marinatlas


    Nov 4, 2007
    Hi, I had fit a 400/18 BT45 on one of mine and the diameter is 20mm (nearly 1"...for you !) taller than the 120/18..........!
  4. Madnorton


    Jun 9, 2008
    There is the Conti Classic Attack dedicated rear in 19'' apparently it will go on a WM2 rim like the roadrider. The other option was the older Roadrunner, but this is no longer listed, it gave better mileage.
  5. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    The Avon Cobra is available in 100-19 and 110-19 and 120-18. They can really deliver the mileage. I like the way they work on the street but I wouldn't suggest using them on the track.

    They are all listed as a front tire for a HD cruiser.

    I have a Heidenhain tire on the front of my bike right now as that was what was available when I needed it. It is wearing like iron.
    But man is it a handful on a piece of grooved pavement. It follows every groove. There is no way I would attempt to ride a rail bridge with that tire.
    Nater_Potater likes this.
  6. ludwig


    Aug 30, 2006
    Shouldn't that be Heidenau ?
    what type , a K34 maybe ?
    I ask , because I was thinking of buying one .
    Looking for a dual purpose tyre 3.25 /19 because I do more and more offroad with my N15 .
  7. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    Yes, it's a Heidenau K34.
    Obviously I had CNC electronics on my mind..

    It is very light handling and wears well. If it were not for grooved pavement I would consider staying with it.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2018
  8. ludwig


    Aug 30, 2006
    Did you do any distance on gravel roads ?
  9. kommando


    May 7, 2005
    I use the Heidenau K60 on a B44 Victor and they work well as a dual purpose tyre as long as it's not too muddy off road so gravel is fine, on road they need care if it's wet in the first 100 miles but fine after that.
  10. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    Not enough to say anything.
  11. worntorn


    Dec 22, 2006
    Here's a pooched Road Rider 19" Universal on the Commando. The log book shows 4100 miles on it.
    I could get another 1000 or so if I stick to roundabouts, even further if I ship the bike to England for wear on the other side.
    We live on a nice country road but most big trips involve a day of highway before finding the twisties.
    So the middle wears out first. I expect it's that way for most.

    If I had it to do again ( buy new alloy rims) I would follow Nigel's lead with the 18" rear rim.
    I did that with the Vincent and generally see 6000 miles on a rear type 400x18 Avon Roadrider.
    As far as the handling goes- not gonna matter either way.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2018
    Nater_Potater likes this.
  12. worntorn


    Dec 22, 2006
    And just for fun here's the Pirelli Angel on the Thruxton R, also nearly done at about 4500 miles.
    The Angels were supposed to be longer wearing than the original tires, Pirelli Diablo Corsas . Didn't happen, both lasted about 5000 miles.
    The Pirellis do endure a lot more of a torque beating from the Triumph than the Commando dishes out to the Avon.
    Seems 5 k miles is a good number to shoot for with MC tires. Just 2 good week long trips!

  13. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    Here is my Avon Cobra with 4100 miles on it. It still has 3.2mm to the closest wear bar.
    It will go another 4000 easily.

    And the Heidenau with 5500 miles on it. It still has 6.1 mm in the center tread.

  14. worntorn


    Dec 22, 2006
    Im liking that Cobra mileage Jim.
    It's not just the expense, it's also the bother of changing tires so often.

  15. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    Yeah, it's not a cheap tire but I really hate it when I have to do a tire on the road. A tire on the road is never cheap.
  16. Matchless


    Dec 23, 2010
    Is that the 110/19 size & as it's a front tyre I pressume you mount it 180 degrees about.
  17. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Dec 10, 2008
    I use the 120-18 on the rear. I do mount it with reverse rotation.
    A few years back I mounted one the other way around by accident.
    I did not notice it until I was replacing it. I don't know whether I just got lucky or if it really does not matter.

    I have used both the 100 and the 110 on the front. The 100 steers a little lighter. Jim
  18. jseng1


    Nov 26, 2009
    For the economy minded - take a look at the Bridgestone spitfire 11F
    100/90 - 19 front
    110/90 -19 rear with opposite rotation so the joint doesn't open up.
  19. CanukNortonNut


    Aug 8, 2005
    Your AM26 pic shows, thats where I switch out my rear tire and toss it and switch it with my front tire. I replace my front with a new skin. Nice for brake grip and stops. Yes that means two wheels need to change but I inspect my front and back wheel assembly and spokes to make me feel warm and fuzzy confident on the wheel assemblies. I put about 5-6K mile on per year.
  20. MexicoMike


    Jan 31, 2010
    In my experience, the only thing that really matters is that, as noted, the diameter of both tires (regardless of rim size/tire profile), is the same and close to the same as OEM. Of course, one has to consider width and the possibility of fouling the chain/swingarm, etc. When I bought my Commando, the PO had a 120 rear (18" rim) which had required that the wheel be offset considerably to avoid the chain. Additionally, the front whee/tire (also an 18" wheel) was nearly 2" smaller diameter than the rear - very twitchy handling. So I replaced that setup with Oem 4.10/19 wheels/Avon RR tires and have been extremely pleased with that combo. Although the mileage might be better with a dedicated rear tire, I'm OK with replacing the tires as necessary with new Avons.

    I am considering going to some alloy Sun Rims but would stay with the same (19") size as what I have now and continue with Avon RR's.