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Old 06-16-2012, 07:09 AM   #9
jack of all trades...
markk53's Avatar
Joined: Dec 2007
Location: Delaware Ohio
Oddometer: 9,013
Originally Posted by Thanas View Post
The point to having a 19/17 set of wider wheels, is to be able to actually DUAL-SPORT, to be quick on-road and be quick off-road. Not one or the other. I tried that with the standard narrow rims and narrow tires

DR 650:
front 1.85 x 21 with 90/90-21
rear 2.50 x 17 with 130/80-17
I had Heidenau K60 on these rims. They worked pretty well on-road, however, with wet weather, the skinny front would slide pretty easily. And that would have been even worse with real knobbie tires. In these sizes, knobbies would be better off-road, but really limit the possibility to do some real sporty ridng on-road.

Now i can ride anywere i want, on-road i can drag the pegs. And because off the wider rims, i can have a bit more aggresive tires that work well off-road.

I've seen this statement before:
21" is better than 17" off-road
17" is better than 21" on-road
And the 19" is the perfect middle ground.

As stated. next bike will have 2 sets, one will be the 21/18 wheels with true knobbies and the other will be a 19/17 set with wide aggressive dual-purpose tires. I'm confident i can go anywhere anybody with 21/18 wheels can go, i just have to ga a little bit slower.

And stating you should just get a streetbike...? what's up with that?
I have only 1 bike, i use it for commuting, all year round. vacations, "canyon" carving, off-roading, anything. That's the hole point to the Dual-purpose/ adventure bike. Go anywhere.

Thank's for the pic. at least 1 person that likes the 19" front.


I watched a Supermoto race put on by NASMoto a few years back. Watched some guy on an old XR600R smoke some newer KTM SMs with 17s. He was running a Dunlop K591 Sport Elite on the 18" back wheel and I think a Metzler Laser ME33 on the 21" front wheel, pulling the lead longer with each lap.

I personally have done both off roading and some really HARD road riding with my Duro Median HF903/904 dual sports in a 17 rear 21 front combination. I can run with my friends on their DRz SMs, XR650R supermoto'ed, and Aprilia 550 Supermoto (not on acceleration and he's stronger in the corners) without much problem. There are a few corners where I've drug a toe. The Aprilia rider, who is much better than I, commented that he has no idea how I ride that KLX that fast after we swapped bikes for a bit. I told him 10 years and 45,000 miles. I have 25,000+ miles on that brand/model tire with lots of riding in all conditions pushing hard. Never had the front slip and the only problem is serious mud and toughest off road conditions. That calls for a pair of knobbies. I have no idea about the Heidenaus, after first riding the Duros (bought them when I couldn't afford anything more expensive) I found them so good in all conditions I never tried any others.

I guess what I'm saying is there is really no need for a 19 or a 17 for the road, except for tire selection and that's even questionable with the availability of the 21" road tires now out for all the customs with 21" wheels. With 45,000 miles on that bike of mine both commuting and play riding on all sorts of road conditions, I have no real functional need to alter wheel sizes. There truly isn't enough difference between the 17 and 21 on the road on a dual sport single. If anything the advantage is totally for dirt/gravel where a 21 will knife down through gravel and dirt along with the larger rolling diameter for rolling over obstacles. So advantage on the big single is totally 21 front.

That said, I am doing a set of 17/17 SM wheels for one particular reason that even a 17/19 can not deal with. I hate wearing out good dual sport tires on the road and know the road tires won't work well on loose dirt/gravel. It only takes about a half hour to swap out. I ride the road tires on the good paved roads from home to my friend's to do some dual sporting for a few days, swap out wheels, ride for a few days on dirt/gravel, then swap out and head home. Maximize wear from both sets of tires. That can not be done with any one set of wheels/tires. Plus I like the look of the supermoto wheels, I just know they aren't better than the 17/21 OEM set with the Duros.

Besides, probably much like you guys doing the 19s, I think the 17s will look cool, much as you guys do the 19. That's likely the only reason to swap out from the 21, there is no other good reason from a stand point of dual sporting. The guys with the desert sled Triumphs and such already had proven that. You don't see many, if any desert or Dakar racers running anything other than a 21 on the front. Even the desert racers are using the 21s now. For those of us who change out, it's all about looks if we have done the research and are honest with ourselves. And that is all good too, to each their own.
Ever get lost? You know, that good kind of lost - come to a dirt road intersection and you have no idea where you are or which way to turn? I like when that happens!

Mark - klx678
95 KLX650C w/Vulcan piston bigbore, Now an 09 KLX250S, selling my 90 Zephyr 550

markk53 screwed with this post 06-16-2012 at 07:25 AM
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