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TOPIC: Advice on a Wheel Upgrade

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 10 Mar 2019 19:30 #800129

  • 79MKII
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I'm looking for ideas on a wheel upgrade for my 79 KZ1000 MKII. I currently have a 3.5" x 18 front and a 5.5" x 17 rear. Both are stock KZ wheels that were widened. The front was an 18" from a Z1-R and the rear was a 16" LTD wheel that was widened and the diameter increased to 17". I had these done about 10 years ago and went with the 17" for a better choice of tires. I've never truly been happy with the look of the 17" rear wheel. I think it looks too small. I'll attach a pic below.

Fast forward to today and I'm planning to change things up a bit with a new, stock length swingarm and more of a sportbike style rather than the dragbike style I have now. It would be so expensive to have another wheel widened and chrome plated to match the front, so what are some other options? Modern sportbike wheels look nice but I don't want to change the forks and I want to keep the stock speedo drive etc.... I want to continue to run a 180/55 on the rear.....any ideas? Thanks

The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250
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Last edit: by 79MKII.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 12 Mar 2019 17:37 #800254

  • les holt
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Some older Suzuki GSXR's have speedo drives but my favorite is the ZRX stuff, 3.5/17 front with speedo drive, works pretty good!! with that, you can match rear wheel combo and get your 5.5/17" back wheel for a 180 tire. I can elaborate more if needed

Les

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 12 Mar 2019 20:25 #800257

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Whats your budget? For $1500 you can get a set of PMC wheels from Japan that will bolt on, which is actually a great price for forged wheels. I have been drooling over the Dymag replicas for a while.

-Vic
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'78 kz1000 LTD long term project

'80 kz750G project
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Last edit: by DoctoRot.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 14 Mar 2019 18:03 #800362

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les holt wrote: Some older Suzuki GSXR's have speedo drives but my favorite is the ZRX stuff, 3.5/17 front with speedo drive, works pretty good!! with that, you can match rear wheel combo and get your 5.5/17" back wheel for a 180 tire. I can elaborate more if needed

Les


I love the ZRX stuff too. Does the kz speedo drive actually mate up to the zrx wheel? Are all years the same (for the zrx)?
The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 14 Mar 2019 18:05 #800363

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Oh yes, I've been drooling over those wheels for a while now. I haven't pulled the trigger there because the widest rear wheel available is a 4.75" which limits the tire to 160. That might be fine....still thinking about it.

DoctoRot wrote: Whats your budget? For $1500 you can get a set of PMC wheels from Japan that will bolt on, which is actually a great price for forged wheels. I have been drooling over the Dymag replicas for a while.

The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 14 Mar 2019 18:12 #800365

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I was leaning toward having another stock real wheel widened but then it has to be chrome plated to match the front or I have to disassemble, strip and refinish the front to match the back. The prices I'm getting are super expensive. They've gone up a lot since I had this last set done. It will be about $800 to have the wheel widened (was $400 when I had it done) plus about another $500 to have the wheel chromed. I'd be $1300 deep not including bearings, rotor, sprocket etc... For that money I might as well buy new from Japan. Just not sure about the 160 rear tire....
The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 15 Mar 2019 03:24 #800370

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It doesn't mate up, If I remember correctly, I modified one of the cables and I cant remember which one. Can't say on yrs, I try to buy in matched sets.

Les

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 15 Mar 2019 07:58 #800377

  • TexasKZ
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The ZRX used the same front wheel throughout the production run, but the rear wheel was widened for the 1200 to take a 180 tire. Kawasaki also offset the rear wheel on the 1200 for chain clearance and alignment.
1982 KZ1000 LTD parts donor
1981 KZ1000 LTD awaiting resurrection
2000 ZRX1100 not ridden enough

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Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 16 Mar 2019 11:01 #800419

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Maybe put the stock swinger length back on first and see how it looks . Might not look so small if it isnt sticking out so far .


Thats same bike suzuki swinger zx 9 rims
Gpz 750 turbo The one I ride
Gpz 750 turbo Not finished
Gpz 750 turbo Not started
Gpz 550 1981
Gpz 550 1983
Bunch of other junk
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Last edit: by riturbo.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 16 Mar 2019 12:05 #800421

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I don't think you'd want a 180/18. a tire that wide and tall will probably look weird and there are very few manufacturers making that size except if its a cruiser type tire. If you go 18" I would go with a 160 and if you go 17" then I would go with a 180.
-Vic
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'78 kz1000 LTD long term project

'80 kz750G project

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Last edit: by DoctoRot.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 21 Mar 2019 19:04 #800808

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riturbo wrote: Maybe put the stock swinger length back on first and see how it looks . Might not look so small if it isnt sticking out so far .


I had that same thought recently....I'll wait to see what it looks like with the shorter swingarm.

That's the same wheel and tire in both pictures? Sure does look bigger with the shorter swingarm.
The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250

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Last edit: by 79MKII.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 21 Mar 2019 19:09 #800809

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DoctoRot wrote: I don't think you'd want a 180/18. a tire that wide and tall will probably look weird and there are very few manufacturers making that size except if its a cruiser type tire. If you go 18" I would go with a 160 and if you go 17" then I would go with a 180.


Good point
The Kaw List:
Current: 79 KZ1000 A3 MKII, 78 KZ1000 A2, 78 KZ1000 Z1-R, 78 KZ650 SR, 80 KE175
Former: 03 KLX400SR, 99 ZRX1000, 82 KZ750 LTD, 80 KZ1000 A4 MKII, 80 KZ1000 LTD, 78 KZ1000 A2, 74 H-2 750 Triple, 78 KL250

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Last edit: by 79MKII.

Advice on a Wheel Upgrade 22 Mar 2019 07:03 #800823

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79MKII wrote:

riturbo wrote: Maybe put the stock swinger length back on first and see how it looks . Might not look so small if it isnt sticking out so far .


I had that same thought recently....I'll wait to see what it looks like with the shorter swingarm.

That's the same wheel and tire in both pictures? Sure does look bigger with the shorter swingarm.


Yup same wheel and tire .
Gpz 750 turbo The one I ride
Gpz 750 turbo Not finished
Gpz 750 turbo Not started
Gpz 550 1981
Gpz 550 1983
Bunch of other junk

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