ADVrider (
-   Parallel Universe (
-   -   F800GS: Anyone done 17" front? (

Steffo 12-03-2009 12:01 AM

F800GS: Anyone done 17" front?
I've got a couple of friends who do loads and loads of track days every summer and now they have started pestering me about coming along on a few next year. As a 21" front wheel don't really give much option for tires I am thinking about converting to 17" front wheel, and also I don't have the cash for a pure trackbike however much I'd like to get one. It looks pretty awesome if you ask me. :D

Anyone done this? If so what are your thoughts?

bxr140 12-03-2009 07:17 AM


Originally Posted by Steffo
...I don't have the cash for a pure trackbike...

...what are your thoughts?

You're barking up the wrong tree. If you can't afford a trackbike, you can't afford to take your umpteen thousand dollar BMW onto the track. Its really as simple as that.

For the record, I commuted on (as in, no car) my "trackbike" for years. I know how it goes. You'll either pussy foot it around the track, and hence, will be a danger to yourself and others, or you'll ride it like you should, and may end up crashing it at some point. Not to mention the ergos of a dual sport are awful for an actual race track.

Also note that for what it would cost to get a 17" wheel and track tires, you'd probably be halfway (or more) to a track bike anyway. In the US, you can probably get a well set up ninja 250 for well under $2k, and you can find 600's out there (not that I'd recommend them as a track bike--too much power for a noob) for $3k (again, USD). Even if you don't get a set up track bike, just about any cheap bike is a better idea than your BMW.

Other than coming onto ADVrider and posting pictures of yourself pyloning around in the slow group on your expensive dual sport, there's really no point.

BigBoPeep 12-03-2009 08:30 AM

I think the front wheel size is the least of your worries. In fact, if you put a 17" wheel on the front of that thing, it would change the chassis geometry dramatically and probably cause it to handle like a basketball.

I have a V-strom, and I know people take them to the track, but I can't see how it would be any fun. As bxr140 pointed out, it would probably be dangerous. Maybe if you could find an f800gs racing series?:dunno

btw, there's an sv650 in the FM right now for $2000. It's not in Sweden, but there are deals out there.


whitham_wannabe 12-03-2009 02:10 PM

I thought about this for a while with mine - a big DS is just going to be a big SuperMotard and we all know how much fun they are. My first experience of a 'motard was a Husky 620 my friend built. I rode it at a track day, and bearing in mind I was racing a full on SuperSport ZX6R and Superbike ZX7R at the time, had more fun on that thing than any other bike I rode that year.

Handling could be interesting, it would liven it a lot by steepening the head angle, and suspension is going to be crazy soft with grippy tyres, but you got big old bars to grab it by the neck and throw it around. You'll be surprised how many sports bikes you can embarrass with your elbows up and your foot out.

Schtum 12-03-2009 02:34 PM

One or two naysayers in here....:huh Should I tell you about riding around the outside of a GSXR1000 on a trackday on my R1200GS?

Like the whitham_wannabe above said, an F800GS on 17" wheels and sticky rubber would just be a giant supermoto and we know how much they piss off sports bike riders on track days. The 800 would also lean forever. I think it'd be a barrel of laughs.

AC Schnitzer displayed a SM'd F800GS at European Motorcycle Shows when the bike was first released.

markymcd 12-03-2009 03:26 PM

It's called an F800R. Save yourself a shitload of money by not modifying a great bike to a bike that already exists.

Audacious Nick 12-03-2009 06:58 PM

If you can't afford a track bike, you can't afford to fix your BMW either.

hillbillypolack 12-03-2009 08:09 PM


Originally Posted by markymcd
It's called an F800R. Save yourself a shitload of money by not modifying a great bike to a bike that already exists.

Completely different riding positions, though, AFAIK. Belt vs chain drive. After a test ride on the 800GS, I can see why someone would want to try 17"s on it.

Kinda like the HP2 enduro "street wheel" setups.

Gustavo 12-03-2009 10:24 PM

I don't have an F800GS, but I saw one that looked very similarly setup as the one in the picture Schtum posted this summer in Portland. It's probably not a cheap option. I'd start with street tires on the existing wheels and see if you like the way the bike feels on the track before spending that much money on a spare set of wheels (or just a front one). You are not going to find super sticky 21" tires, but Bridgestone BT-45, Metzeler Lasertec or Pirelli MT60 are some tires that come to mind, are reasonably sticky for slow/intermediate track sessions and come in 21".


motolombardo 12-04-2009 08:42 AM

track bikes are cheap, wheels and bmw crashes are not.
buy a used sv for 2k.
see classifieds.

Cos 12-04-2009 08:54 AM


Originally Posted by hillbillypolack
Completely different riding positions, though, AFAIK. Belt vs chain drive. After a test ride on the 800GS, I can see why someone would want to try 17"s on it.

The R's chain driven too.

BMR 12-04-2009 02:20 PM

For fark sakes, the OP wants to get a smaller front tire and take his 800 to the track a few times next which I say "Right On, post some pics"!

Will the Negative Nancy's please take a pass.

Boon Booni 12-04-2009 02:31 PM

I bet 17's on the F800GS would be fun. :ricky

Bucko 12-04-2009 08:53 PM

Before you spend money on your bike, borrow one of your track buddies' bikes for a few track days and see if it's even something you want to do. You bought a GS...hopefully you'll be happier riding through the forest on it than around and around and around on pavement.

The Griz 12-04-2009 10:08 PM

The F800GS is a big dirt bike. Get a F800R or some other road bike.

Times are GMT -7.   It's 05:04 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2015