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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking at buying a 650 V-Strom and I like the new XT with the wire wheels. The bags are nice, but I am not sure if I really want those hard bags.
So, what is the advantage to the wire wheels, and do I need them? I have a KLR 650 right now and I use it to do FS roads and fire roads. I also have a BMW that is road only. The V will replace both and be used for road touring and mild off road. I do want to do things like the TAT, and the Back Country Discovery Routes.
So, should I buy the one with the wire wheels for more money, or save and buy the basic with ABS and build what I want?
 

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Cast wheels are fine for on road but are much easier to damage off-road. They require zero maintenance.

Spoked wheels are stronger off-road but require an occasional spoke check and tightening.

Other than that its preference only.
 

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Running tubes on the spoke wheels can be a hassle as well. Its easy to pinch a tube on the trail. So that would require you to pull the wheel off and change the tube or you will be dead in the water. Get a flat on the solid wheel and all it requires is a tire plug and CO2 cartridges.
 

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While I have seen bent rims (cast and spoked. My buddies F800GS spoked rim looked like a stop sign after about 6 months) I haven't personally experienced one. I try to not to run low pressures and whatnot and my wheels have taken some pretty hard hits and not bent. I wouldnt' worry about it either way. Spoked rims aren't a necessity for me based on my own personal experience with them.
 

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Running tubes on the spoke wheels can be a hassle as well. Its easy to pinch a tube on the trail. So that would require you to pull the wheel off and change the tube or you will be dead in the water. Get a flat on the solid wheel and all it requires is a tire plug and CO2 cartridges.
These are tubeless, similar to the Super Ten and the GS. :fineprint:
 

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I don't think the 650 XT would be a good choice for the TAT.. you may want to hang on to your KLR for that one ;)
 
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I looked at the wire wheels option for my newly acquired 650. The 650 XT wires wont fit. Custom wheels are north of $2k. The benefit does not seem to balance out with the cost.
 
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