smaller 17" wheels vs 18"

smaller 17" wheels vs 18"

This is a discussion on smaller 17" wheels vs 18" within the Vintage Motorcycle Racing forums, part of the Forums category; .................

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  1. #1
    Senior Member dirkchecken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    smaller 17" wheels vs 18"

    Last edited by dirkchecken; 07-09-2015 at 04:57 PM.
    I like my shocks like I like my women. Cheap and Chinese.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Diamondj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Wharton, NJ, USA.
    Quote Originally Posted by dirkchecken View Post
    my stock rim size on my S3 is 18" and im looking to build up a set of wheels w/ alloy rims. will run the bike in uscra P3 middleweight prod (17" legal, WM 3). just wondering if anybody had replaced there 18's for smaller sized rims. would the bike handle any different? less stable at speed ? other than less ground clearance- any reason not too. whats wrong w/ the old wheels you ask- rusty spokes. chances are that a used stock replacement found on ebay wouldnt be much better. thanks t
    I have a set of 17" rims set up for a T500. Stock rear hub and a buffalo drum up front. If you want to borrow them and scuff up the tires to test them out, you are welcome to do so.


  3. #3
    Senior Member Tonnystark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    , florida, USA.
    I know its minor but the foot print of the tire would be slightly smaller as the circumference is less..its possible that the less grab it has could be made up with a change in tire compound or design if that size is more readily available...
    Last edited by Tonnystark; 11-11-2014 at 09:59 PM.
    78' SR500
    64' YG1S
    15' XT250

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  5. #4
    Senior Member monkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    hull, mass, USA.
    you'll have trouble finding vintage rubber in 17"

    not sure if rain slicks are legal.... but that would be your only option

  6. #5
    Senior Member jalsteve's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Herts, UK
    Avon, Dunlop and Continental do classic style race tyres in 17. However profiles tend to be lowish so will slow your steering up a bit. Remember that 17 inch tyres have smaller rolling radius than 18's or rather; generally 1 rotation of an 18 inch wheel will have you further down the track compared to a 17 so you will need to alter your gearing therefore. You also will loose ground clearance.

    No idea what the race regs are where you are but I would check eligibility. In the UK 17 are not permitted as they didn't become available until the late 80's and well after your triple was made.

    I doubt there's any advantage in changing.
    Lite the blue touch paper and stand well back!

  7. #6
    Banned Witworth's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Stay with 18's. More stability and a positive steering response.

    Danger, is my business."

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