Changing wheels??? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 08-19-2008, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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Question Changing wheels???

There have been numerous posts on tyres with a slightly more off road bias for travelling on gravel or similar light offroad applications. One of the issues I see with tyre selection, is the lack of tyre choice for the wheel size on the Versys.

The rear is not so bad, as one can substitute the 160/60/17 for a 150/70/17 easily enough and there is then a wide rane of touring treads to suit.

The big problem is a lack of choice for a 17" front wheel.

Has anyone investigated changing to a 19" wheel up front? Guess the problem is a match for the rear wheel pattern. Or going another step, spoked wheels at both ends? I mean, this seems pretty much all Aprilia has done with the new Pegaso, for example...

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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 03:35 PM
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I looked at the problem briefly, but decided not to go there.

The v-strom front wheel has bigger dia. brake discs and is more narrow than the Versys, not sure of the axle size between the two.

My lathe and mill will not handle a 19" wheel so I am out as far as being able to machine a fix.

The remount of the front fender is also not an easy mod.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-09-2008, 05:40 PM
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Oh come on now, someone has to have a solution to the lack off off-road worthiness the Versys has. With more BMW like 19/21 and 18 or 17 inch rear tire this would be the ultimate Jap. adv touring bike!!!
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-09-2008, 09:11 PM
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Lets Do It!!

I would LOVE to see a 19" tire solution. So what do we do? Can we brain storm here a little and see what directions we might go? I'm willing to do some research if someone will give me some direction!!!!!!
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-10-2008, 08:54 AM
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I would say the first thing we need to do is measure the front and rear axle diameters.

Then measure the distance from the outside faces of the bearings, both front and rear.

Also what size mm are the front forks? If they are the same as another bike that has a 19 inch wheel you could just swap the forks only.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-10-2008, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michelangelo View Post
Oh come on now, someone has to have a solution to the lack off off-road worthiness the Versys has. With more BMW like 19/21 and 18 or 17 inch rear tire this would be the ultimate Jap. adv touring bike!!!
Except for the under-exhaust.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-11-2008, 05:05 AM Thread Starter
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The real problem is the 17" up front. A 150-70-17 Anakee will work on the back. Need someone to figure out a solution for the front axle. Maybe a spoked wheel set would be nice, 17" back and 19" in front. Raising the front mudguard is easy enough
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-11-2008, 06:45 PM
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Spoked wheels would be the way to go if at all possible. Anybody know of a good custom wheel supplier?
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-12-2008, 09:59 AM
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Woody's Wheels and Buchannan's are the only ones that I can think of. Might be worth it to give them a shout. Google them, or look for an ad in CycleNews.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-12-2008, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Sir Vesa View Post
Woody's Wheels and Buchannan's are the only ones that I can think of. Might be worth it to give them a shout. Google them, or look for an ad in CycleNews.
I checked the web for both companies. Buchanans doesn't sell or seem to do anything with hubs, so I sent an email to Woody's. I'll keep yawl informed as to the answer.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 08:32 AM
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I hate to say it, but the HD 19" mag wheel would probably be an easy mod to fit, just need to build (turn an axle) and adaptor for discs to bolt up plus spacers for axle. Ninja 650 wheels are also on ebay from time to time, front wheel with discs would supply the needed parts to modify the HD wheel. Some machineing required, heh heh.

These are on ebay all time for less than $50. Not sure of the size, but if 2.50" - 2.75" wide should be fine for DS tire.

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 09:49 AM
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Puting a V-Strom front wheel on a Versys is a easy mod ... you have to turn the rotor diameter down 3/8 of an inch ... and buy two V-Strom front wheel spacers to turn down to the correct length ... that's it ... what you see in the photos is my vstrom front wheel on the versys ... I'm presently looking for a wheel myself ... since I figured it out ... If someone knows where to obtain one at a reasonable price ... let me know ... the details are ... raise the front fender ... like I did when I put a 130x80-17 tire on the front ... rotors on the vstrom are 310 mm so the rotors have to be turned down to 300mm so the calipers will bolt up ... there is enough surface on the vstrom rotors to handle the reduction in diameter ... the lateral movement in the calipers are more than enough to accomodate the little difference in rotor spacing between the two bikes ... you will use the axle out out the versys to do this mod as the bearing ID is the same on both bikes ... and modify the vstrom bushings to center the wheel ... and seal on the vstrom wheel bearing seals ... that's it ...

Edit: ... I forgot that I have custom Galfer brake lines ... the stock jumper brake line will have to be replaced with a longer line to go over the raised fender ... or ... do what I did ...

Last edited by freewheeler; 09-13-2008 at 10:05 AM.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 11:44 AM
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We want a report!!!!

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Originally Posted by freewheeler View Post
http://s71.photobucket.com/albums/i1...ersys%20Album/

Puting a V-Strom front wheel on a Versys is a easy mod ... you have to turn the rotor diameter down 3/8 of an inch ... and buy two V-Strom front wheel spacers to turn down to the correct length ... that's it ... what you see in the photos is my vstrom front wheel on the versys ... I'm presently looking for a wheel myself ... since I figured it out ... If someone knows where to obtain one at a reasonable price ... let me know ... the details are ... raise the front fender ... like I did when I put a 130x80-17 tire on the front ... rotors on the vstrom are 310 mm so the rotors have to be turned down to 300mm so the calipers will bolt up ... there is enough surface on the vstrom rotors to handle the reduction in diameter ... the lateral movement in the calipers are more than enough to accomodate the little difference in rotor spacing between the two bikes ... you will use the axle out out the versys to do this mod as the bearing ID is the same on both bikes ... and modify the vstrom bushings to center the wheel ... and seal on the vstrom wheel bearing seals ... that's it ...

Edit: ... I forgot that I have custom Galfer brake lines ... the stock jumper brake line will have to be replaced with a longer line to go over the raised fender ... or ... do what I did ...
Awesome job - great bike and it looks from the pics like you USE it; kudos!!! You need to answer a few pertinent questions though - enquiring minds want to know:

1) Whats your evaluation of the switch out - how does the new rim/tire affect: turn out and flickability? tracking, and overall pavement handling?

2) Have you noticed an appreciable increase in rough road/terrain handling - can you give details?

3) What are those tires you are running - evaluation?

4) Is the rim from a V strom or Wee strom ( 650) or are they the same?

5) With the fender raised and part of the lower forks now somewhat exposed, do you worry about or notice dings in the fork shaft that might eventually be a problem with cutting up the seals?

6) Whats your overall satisfaction with the switch, and whats your dirt/pavement riding ratio?

7) Whats you blood type, DNA profile, date of birth, SS#, bank account info, criminal record, and 3rd grade test scores.

That's all I can think of for now - I'll get back to you as I think of more!!!!!
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 12:05 PM
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Awesome job - great bike and it looks from the pics like you USE it; kudos!!! You need to answer a few pertinent questions though - enquiring minds want to know:

1) Whats your evaluation of the switch out - how does the new rim/tire affect: turn out and flickability? tracking, and overall pavement handling?

I just threw it on to see if it would work ... as I have a DL1000 Vstrom

2) Have you noticed an appreciable increase in rough road/terrain handling - can you give details?

With the 130x80-17 anakee it definitely worked better on dirt and gravel ... the negative is heavier steering ... do to the heavy rear tire on the front ... the reason to put the vstrom tire on was to give stability ... and keep the light feeling steering ... like the vstrom .... by the way ... I'm running a 150x70-17 on the rear now ( like the vstrom )

3) What are those tires you are running - evaluation?

I was running a anakee on the rear ... and liked it ... they are out of stock ... so for now I'm running oem vstrom bridgestone ... which seems to work ok ... ( I like the anakees better ... )

4) Is the rim from a V strom or Wee strom ( 650) or are they the same?

You will have to run the Vstrom 1000 rim ... because of the wheel bearing diameter

5) With the fender raised and part of the lower forks now somewhat exposed, do you worry about or notice dings in the fork shaft that might eventually be a problem with cutting up the seals?

I do not worry about it ... if I did ... A modified rock shield would not be hard to fab ...

6) Whats your overall satisfaction with the switch, and whats your dirt/pavement riding ratio?

although I haven't made the switch to the 19" yet ... by running the 130x80-17 anakee on the front ... I know it will have all the pluses ... without the negatives that I'm experiencing now ... and the back up to that statement is that I own a vstrom 1000 which is running the same tires that I will end up with on the versys ... 70% pavement ... 30% dirt and gravel

7) Whats you blood type, DNA profile, date of birth, SS#, bank account info, criminal record, and 3rd grade test scores.

blood type "V" ... DNA is offroad, dualsport, adventure tourer ... date of birth 04-07-1952 ... ss# what ever you want it to be ...! bank account info... bleak ...! 3rd grade test score ... hmmmm ... math "0" ...
physical education ... I could hold my own ...!

Last edited by freewheeler; 09-13-2008 at 01:44 PM.
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 12:38 PM
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Anything seems easy if you own a lathe

Have any of you considered just swapping in a whole different, more off-roady front end? Like from the KLR maybe? Sort of like people put GSXR fronts on the SV650. You'd get the bigger wheel and longer travel.

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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Anything seems easy if you own a lathe

Have any of you considered just swapping in a whole different, more off-roady front end? Like from the KLR maybe? Sort of like people put GSXR fronts on the SV650. You'd get the bigger wheel and longer travel.
No ... I want to make the versys as capable as the vstrom on dirt and gravel ... I'm not trying to make it into a dirt bike ...
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-13-2008, 01:04 PM
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I picked the KLR to mention only because it's the same make and might therefore take the least adapter-ing, but it could be from any other bike... depends on the stem, mostly.

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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 10:58 AM
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Wheel price

Local Suzuki dealer just quoted me about $500 for Strom wheel assembly ( everything except axle and tire). Woodys gave me a ball park of $1500 - $2000 for a set of Versys spoke wheels..."if there was enough interest"
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 03:08 PM
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I wonder if the larger diameter wheel could make contact with the radiator under full compression. Especially watch out if you raise the forks in the triple clamps to return to stock geometry.

I bought the Versys because of the 17" street wheels. Otherwise, I would have gone with the WeeStrom.

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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 06:55 PM
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Success!

You've done it! You've created the World's First Kawazuki Ver-Strom!


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