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  #1  
Old 2 Mar 2004
jv3 jv3 is offline
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R1200 GS Beemer Mag or Spoke Rim?

Hello, I have ordered a new R1200 GS and was wondering on your thought's about the new mag wheel that's availible versus a spoke wheel. Is it going to be strong enough for the RTW travel. It sure would be easy to clean...plus look's pretty cool.

Thanks for your advice...John.
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Old 2 Mar 2004
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Surely would recommend spoked wheel if you do often bad- or offroad ride. Magnesiums are more tarmac oriented stuff, one rougher jump and they're broken or twisted :-( Also some specialists say that spoked wheels somehow make the bike more smooth, forgiving and controllable too in critical situations.

And sure i think the spoked wheels look ~2X more stylish and more original than magnesiums under a enduro bike!

[This message has been edited by Margus (edited 02 March 2004).]
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Old 2 Mar 2004
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Margus is right, the mag wheels are more pavement oriented. Think Suzuki V-Strom, or super moto.

For bad road rtw I think that spoke wheels are better, BUT will require more maintenance and are heavier iirc.

MOST people will be fine with mag wheels on a rtw trip. MOST people do very little serious off-road that would be a real problem for mags, especially on something the size and weight of an RxxxxGS. IF you go for mag wheels, just go a little slower on the rougher roads, take it easier. 99% of the time you're on pavement and it doesn't matter.

Remember that if you do bend a spoke rim, you will probably end up replacing the whole wheel anyway. Yes, "spoked wheels can be trued", but these spoke wheels are so hard to true that BMW says it can't be done and recommends replacing the wheel. (It CAN be done but is difficult and expensive - it is NOT something your average mechanic is going to have a lot of success with, especially if it's dented)

If you're a very good rider and want to visit all the bizarre off-pavement little places in the middle of nowhere, then spoked wheels are the way to go.

ymmv...

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Old 3 Mar 2004
jv3 jv3 is offline
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Thanks guys for your input. I'm still undecided on the new bike which way to go. I just did a 13000k ride thru Mexico on my 650Gs with spokes and all went well, but often wonder what would have happened if I had mag's instead...you know hitting thoses hidden topes (speed bumps) at 100k per hour. Would I have bent a rim with a mag hmmm who know's?
John...
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Old 3 Mar 2004
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That's one of the advantages of spoked wheel - it has many spokes and anyone of them has ability for some elastic movement, in the end, if you force the wheel roughly (i.e. jump or hit a small barrier on the road) they have a free space to move and to they "soften" the hit, i think they can deform few millimetres or even more at the time and gain their normal position back after the hit again. That's why the spoked wheels are as de-facto status in motocross - they're more forgiving for the rider's "mistakes" and they're lightweight too compared with full magnesium ones. Meanwhile, i think magnesium wheels doesn't even resist on 1 millimetre of deformation - they'll bend or crack!

But yes, spoked wheels do need a maintenence for some time intervals. Especially the BMWs cross-spoke patented wheels are very hard to manipulate with and sure they need a special mechanic with previous aknowledge with those type of wheels to "fine-tune" them again when the spokes have gotten too loose...

But those time intervals for maintenance are very long i've heard, but also fully depends how hard you ride your bike.
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Old 3 Mar 2004
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Well after 155.000 km on my R80GS I have never done any work on the spokes, but I always carry some spare.
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Old 3 Mar 2004
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Using spoked wheels on the road may have saved my life. I was on my 1100GS on a very good road in Portugal. I had a passenger, camping gear, everything...and at 110 mph I hit a granite cobblestone which was sitting in the middle of the road, on a slight bend. I never saw it because it was in the shade of a tree and I was a bit busy overtaking a car.

The front rim was so badly dented that there was a gap of 1 cm between it and the bead. The back one didn't get dented ao much - it fractured from the edge of the rim to one of the spokes. The bike went up in the air but after it landed it stayed under control without me doing anything except hang on with my jaw on the floor. We missed the car and came to a halt without any fuss. We were able to continue our trip after getting new wheels Fedexed. If we had had cast wheels they might well have shattered, in which case I think we'd have had a very nasty crash - the road was lined with dry stone walls. OK, it wasn't just the wheels that saved us - the strength, stability and balance of the bike were also vital I reckon. But I'm a fan of spoked wheels on tarmac - they give you a little bit more of a safety margin and you never know when you'll be grateful for it.
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