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Gents & Ladies,

I've used the search function--we all agree light wheels are sexy and make the bike faster, but I'd like to know about your first hand experience with the wheels and how they made the bike *handle*

I'm seriously considering picking up a set of the Alpinas.

Does it make the bike easier to flick through turns?

I hear that handling "improves" but how exactly does it improve?

Thanks very much for your thoughts/experiences in advance.

BarfyBarfsalot
 

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I don't have alpinas, but forged aluminum y spokes marchesinis (999r wheels), which are roughly 20lbs lighter than stock, and here are my impressions:

Acceleration: noticeably quicker, but not like a major kick in your ass. it's more like it's so smooth that you don't realize how fast you're going until you look at your tach because it's more effortless for the bike to get there.

Breaking: it's hard for me to say because I put 4p calipers at the same time as I changed the wheels, so my breaking power has been vastly improved regardless of the wheels.

turning: with stock wheels (and suspension) I have always felt like you literally had to toss the bike into a turn, which was always a work out, especially when you do multiple turns one after the other and have to flip the bike side to side... now, the bike eases into a corner with no effort, maintains trajectory perfectly, and I can flip it very easily. Almost like if I was riding on a cushion.

I lost the wire spoke look with these wheels, but it actually looks bad ass and for the performance improvement, well worth it.

the alpinas look great, but I think for the money they are not light enough to make as big a difference as the marchesinis.

so there you go.
 

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I bought my bike in large part because of the spoked wheels. I know I could spend a pile of dosh to make it handle better, go faster, and look cooler. But after looking at the costs involved, it appears that its cheaper to just by a used performance Duc and call it a day. Yes, it's a bit bumpy. But the LOOK. I can't imagine removing the spokes. The cost of the Aplinas and the actual difference in feel just didn't compute for me.
 

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I've had Alpinas about a month now and love them. Handlingwise I would pretty much echo what DGJ said, although I'd agree that the handling probably gets better with even lighter wheels. For me, my first concern in getting new wheels was to lose the tubes. On my seemingly few days off, I tend to head to areas with few people and sketchy cell-phone reception so the peace of mind I*get having a tire kit along more than makes up for the cost.
 

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I agree with theduckIIr the spoked wheels are the look of the retro bike changing the rims to me is a waste of money if you want to go fast and stop and go around corners like a gp bike then get a 1098/1198 that will do all the things that you want, Don’t get me wrong but I thought the sport classic was that not a bitsa this and bitsa that, I also have done a few mods to my bike but the spoke wheels stay.same as people complaining about the aggressive riding position if you don’t like it don’t buy it.
 

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I've had Alpinas about 9 months now.
My main motivation for a wheel change was to go tubeless, after being stranded twice with flats.
I love the spoked look and think the bike is a keeper so paid the premium willingly. They do look hot you have to admit.
Oh and the bike felt faster and more agile after the changeover.
 

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I agree with theduckIIr the spoked wheels are the look of the retro bike changing the rims to me is a waste of money if you want to go fast and stop and go around corners like a gp bike then get a 1098/1198 that will do all the things that you want, Don’t get me wrong but I thought the sport classic was that not a bitsa this and bitsa that, I also have done a few mods to my bike but the spoke wheels stay.same as people complaining about the aggressive riding position if you don’t like it don’t buy it.
trust me my man. The sport classic is exactly the bike I wanted and that's why I bought it 2 years ago and didn't go for a 1098, which in my opinion is too much bike for the street and belongs on the track. Changing the wheels certainly doesn't turn the bike in a GP bike, but simply in a better handling SC, and many people on the site will tell you there is nothing wrong with that... (but I would agree it's useless for those who like to leave their bikes parked in front of sports bars...)

I'm happy with modding my SC the way I want it, to make it do what I want it to do, and I'm not shoving my points down anyone's throat, at the same time I'm glad to share my experience with the cool people on this thread, especially the ones who are looking for pertinent information....

so be happy with the way you mod your bike, I'm happy with the way I mod mine, and everyone's a winner. The "don't like it don't buy it" comment seems radical and out of place. some people here have done mods that I personally don't agree with but I don't go telling them they shouldn't buy an SC if it's to do this or that. it's ok to be opinionated, ask Muschi... but no one is the authority on what others should do.
 

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Hi Guys,

Firstly I was VERY disappointed with the handling of the GT after I bought it....alarmed is a better description.

Maybe I ride a little harder than the manufacturer intended for my model and the Sport was the one for me....but I use my bike for work which involves a couple of hours in a straight line...30 minutes with a client...then back to the office. The GT seemed to tick most of the boxes

The Wasp TMSD is the only reason I still own the bike...and how I found this forum...it made a poor handling bike less frightening.

I changed the chrome spokers for some excel wheels...2 ex members on this forum have owned them before me...I tried to fit Kevlar tubeless kits but the amount of gunk that would be needed to seal them would have negated the weight saving ( yep still aware of the safety/convenience factor). The difference....yes I guess it's better...not night and day difference...and I would consider alloy...some 70's bikes had alloys...man exotic! I would like to try them on my bike anyway....I could always go back to the black spoke look.

The test would be interesting enough....has anyone gone back to spokes after fitting alloy ???? Come on forum members....has anyone gone back to spokes???

I have noticed the BIGGEST improvement in the bikes handling has been the fitting of better rear shocks....and that to me seems strange because all the focus has been on how crappy the front forks are. I know Ohlins are supposed to be the best, the guy that fitted these is also an Ohlins dealer...I make no claim they are better or worse or equal...but he had Ohlins on his own bike and then changed to Wilbers and he personally preferred the Wilbers ( we could be suspicious and suspect he had a better profit margin in Wilbers ).

I have new fully adjustable Showas going on tomorrow...and to be honest...I bought them before I had the Wilbers fitted. Last weekend I left my mate behind on a series of very bumpy corners...had the wasp cranked up about 12 clicks...and the bike tracked true and was a delight...best ride I have ever had...all 350klms of it. ( my mate is 60 and rides a speed triple...on the GT I previously could not keep with him)

So....with hindsight....I really like Bly's Alpinas and maybe I should have bought them and not been such a tight arse...but I also really like some of the alloys fitted to various members bikes....as a matter of fact....the only bikes on this forum I have not liked much have been pranged ones

Cheers Roger
 

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Don't get me wrong here... I'm all for custom bikes. I've done some custom projects in the past that ensured my daughter will be going to community college 8 years from now. My Sport has a few bits on it, say $2,500+ (mostly for the Termis). The rest are purely cosmetic and better tyres. My point is that I could EASILY spend more money then the bike cost me ($8,500 new) on hop up parts. Throw in the WASP TMSD, Alpinas, big bore kit, light flywheel, Ohlins front and back, monoblock brakes with braided lines, Beast kit, etc. AND PRESTO! The Sport Classic of my dreams. Never mind that it still wouldn't circle the ring nearly as composed as my 748. It would still be my dream CLASSIC! Keep in mind that I have considered all of these mods at on time or another. Then I considered that I bought my 748 for $4,000 and I wonder what the hell I'm thinking. I bought this bike for it's looks and it's motor.
 

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Don't get me wrong here... I'm all for custom bikes. I've done some custom projects in the past that ensured my daughter will be going to community college 8 years from now. My Sport has a few bits on it, say $2,500+ (mostly for the Termis). The rest are purely cosmetic and better tyres. My point is that I could EASILY spend more money then the bike cost me ($8,500 new) on hop up parts. Throw in the WASP TMSD, Alpinas, big bore kit, light flywheel, Ohlins front and back, monoblock brakes with braided lines, Beast kit, etc. AND PRESTO! The Sport Classic of my dreams. Never mind that it still wouldn't circle the ring nearly as composed as my 748. It would still be my dream CLASSIC! Keep in mind that I have considered all of these mods at on time or another. Then I considered that I bought my 748 for $4,000 and I wonder what the hell I'm thinking. I bought this bike for it's looks and it's motor.
100% with you. makes sense. I just have 1 bike, and I ride the $hit out of it.
 
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