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FEDEX says delivery was delayed from Friday to Saturday (1/15/2022). However, where I live, Western North Carolina, is predicted to get 15 inches of snow in the next 48 hours. So, if they don't deliver the wheels on Saturday, I probably won't get them until sometime next week (after the snow fall and recovery period). 🌨🥶🏔⛄
 

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Last few pics (there's a ten pic limit on each post evidently)...
Glove Wood Gesture Wood stain Hardwood
Bicycle part Locking hubs Automotive tire Rim Vehicle brake

Rectangle Wood Textile Automotive lighting Automotive exterior

Wood Water Road surface Rectangle Hood


My point in posting all these pics is to convey that these rims were very professionally packed for shipping. The rims themselves feel as solid as any rims I've owned, most currently I have BMW OEM forged rims on both my '17 RR and '21 XR. That said, I have to admit that I have not worked with wire spoked rims since circa 1986. The finish on the rims also seems first rate, though there are a lot of finger smudges left on the rims during assembly and packaging. I tested a few smudges to make sure I could clean the them off before I posted this. Color-wise, when I held the rims up to my gold front forks, so both the rims and the forks where in the same light, the colors matched.

The 15" of snow that I'm getting here has put the kibosh on my original plan to have my dealer install the rims with a set of TKC80s. I have my own tire changing machine, so my plan now is to remove the OEM rims, move the sprocket, rotors, ABS sensor wheels, etc. to the new rims (without tires yet) and test fit them to the bike. If they test fit OK, i.e., if they rotate freely and have no lateral movement, I'll remove the OEM tires from the OEM rims and install them on the new rims and use that rim/tire combination while I complete the bike's break-in period. I took delivery of the bike just two days ago and brought it home by trailer, so it's only got 4 miles on it from the dealer's pre-delivery test ride.

All for now. More to follow.
 

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Just wanted to add my experience in here. I'm a big fan of Rally Raid's products. They have great communication, excellent products, and great install videos. Their wheels have been sold out due to covid and brexit issues so when I saw this thread it piqued my interest. Looks like these wheels are a great alternative. So, I ordered some, and 4 days later Fedex delivered. Packed well, look great, so far everything fits with no problems can't wait to get them on.

One thing I've noticed is that the wheel bearings are impossible to spin by hand. Hopefully the grease they are packed with is thick and just needs to warm up after a bit of break period. For comparison, the bearings in the stock wheels are very easy to spin by hand, off the bike.
 

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This question/observation is mostly for normanzb and specbebop, since they have these wheels, especially normanzb, since he has his installed. I saw on an unrelated video that the GS's OEM wheels have three quasi-wedge shaped absorbers between sprocket hub and the wheel. I recalled when I unpacked and inspected the KKE/VMX wheels that they provide five wedge shaped absorbers to go between their sprocket hub and their wheel. Given this difference, I decided I was past due to do some KKE/VMX wheel fitment tests

For my first test, I removed my OEM wheel to have the OEM axle available and confirmed that the axle goes through the sprocket hub and wheel cleanly with, IMO, reasonably tight clearances once I add a bit of grease on the currently completely clean KKE/VMX axle hole.

My second test was to try fitting their sprocket hub on their wheel with their absorbers in place; when I do this, everything lines up ok, but the sprocket hub does NOT go in with just a bit of hand pressure. In contrast, my OEM sprocket hub goes into and comes out of the OEM wheel, with the OEM absorbers installed, with just a bit of hand pressure. I'd love to be able to say that my absorbers are used and therefore fitment was easy because they are worn, but my GS has only four miles on it from the dealer's pre-delivery road test, so that's not it. Also, when I try to rotate the OEM sprocket while installed with the absorbers on the OEM wheel, there is zero movement; the OEM absorbers are perfectly filling the space between the sprocket hub and the wheel.

When I use a small rubber mallet to tap the KKE/VMX sprocket hub on to the KKE/VMX wheel with absorbers in place, it goes in slightly each time, but I stopped after I realized it was so tight that I might not be able to get the sprocket hub back out. This has me thinking that I should trim the absorbers slightly, but before I do that, I thought I'd query KKE/VMX and you guys, especially normanzb and specbebop.

So, normanzb and specbebop, did you encounter this issue when you mated up the sprocket hub, absorbers, and wheel?
 

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JerryG, same here. Across the board the tolerances are extremely tight on these wheels. I had to use a rubber mallet to tap my sprocket hub onto the wheel. I also had to use the mallet on the rear axle when installing the wheel on the bike.

That said, I love these wheels. Pics in a bit.
 

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JerryG, same here. Across the board the tolerances are extremely tight on these wheels. I had to use a rubber mallet to tap my sprocket hub onto the wheel. I also had to use the mallet on the rear axle when installing the wheel on the bike. That said, I love these wheels. Pics in a bit.
Thanks, specbebop; just the info I needed.

how about some type of rubber lubricant ? I would think that tighter is better in this situation.
Re lubing the absorbers, I considered that and I checked the OEM absorbers, they were dry and clean, not a drop of lube. Of course, dry and clean rubber means friction, which is the problem. During my Army days, I recall rubber like this being lightly coated in a dry powder. Perhaps some graphite powder would work; I think I'll give that a try that.

Re tighter is better, not so much. Too tight would mean there's no or less give left in the absorbers and they will not provide the intended cushioning. Ultimately, my goal is that the absorber fit be snug, but without the absorbers being seriously pre-compressed. That's how I'd describe the fit of the OEM hub, absorbers, and wheel. I'm leaning toward some judicious trimming of the absorbers if the graphite isn't enough.

More later.
 

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I got everything mounted yesterday and went for a trial ride. Varying speeds, city streets, and highway. Handling feels slightly different in the corners at speed, though I can't describe exactly what the difference is. After the ride, the hubs were cool to the touch (my only concern after the tightness of the tolerances and the stiffness of the bearings), wheels held air pressure, and it really does look great.

Of course I can't compare these to the Rally Raid offering, or the one available on eBay. But, I'd definitely recommend these, especially at the price they are offering.
 

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Use baby powder (talcum powder). I used it when I had tube type tires to minimize friction between inner tube and outer tire. The purpose of the talc in tires is to lessen heat induced friction over heating the tire, specially when off-roading with low tire pressure.
Great suggestion hasselman. I put the absorbers in a plastic bag with talc-based body powder, shook the bag, and then installed them. With that done, I was able to gently tap the sprocket in place with a small rubber mallet. Twice during the process, I pulled the sprocket out to make sure it wasn't getting too tight to remove; it came out easily by hand alone. Apparently, it was just the rubber's friction causing the problem. You made my day. 🙏
 

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I'm concerned tho about replacing / availability of the cush rubbers & bearings as it appears they use non-OEM parts only available from China? Is that correct or am I misunderstanding something?
The same question occurred to me once I realized the OEM absorbers were not used by the KKE/VMX wheels. I've sent a query to my KKE contact; she has been very responsive on all my queries so far.

That said, my experience vis-a-vis the need to replace absorbers is limited; I've only owned four chain driven motorcycles recently and I've never had a dealer suggest replacing the absorbers in any of them. This includes a '12 S1000RR with 24,000 miles; '17 S1000RR with 30,000 miles and counting; '21 S1000XR with 25,000 miles and counting; '22 G310GS with 4 miles and soon to be counting.

So, my question to this forum is: When is it typical to need new absorbers?
 

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Thats good to hear JerryG, as these wheels are exactly what I was hoping for. I doubt the rubbers used are unique, so an alternative from another bike may be a possibility, its only a matter of finding the right one!

Playing devils advocate for a moment tho; its not unheard of, some bikes chewing through cush rubber like consumables. Heres some examples on G310R's on this forum, which was the reason for my concerns.
Cush drive rubbers? | BMW G310 R/GS Forum (g310rforum.com)

I want to jump on these wheels, but I need to research this a little more for my own peace of mind. One advantage the Rally-Raid wheels have is they use all OEM parts, but they are tubed and don't look nearly as cool as these VMX -and I am a sucker to good looks!
 

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Thats good to hear JerryG, as these wheels are exactly what I was hoping for. I doubt the rubbers used are unique, so an alternative from another bike may be a possibility, its only a matter of finding the right one!

Playing devils advocate for a moment tho; its not unheard of, some bikes chewing through cush rubber like consumables. Heres some examples on G310R's on this forum, which was the reason for my concerns.
Cush drive rubbers? | BMW G310 R/GS Forum (g310rforum.com)

I want to jump on these wheels, but I need to research this a little more for my own peace of mind. One advantage the Rally-Raid wheels have is they use all OEM parts, but they are tubed and don't look nearly as cool as these VMX -and I am a sucker to good looks!
Excellent reference, thanks. Especially MichaelJ's contribution to the question, how can you tell the absorbers are going bad (paraphrased): "You will have driveline snatch. The quick way to check is to put your bike in neutral (engine off) and see if you can wiggle the rear sprocket without the rear wheel moving. A little play is normal, but if you can rotate the sprocket one tooth or more, the rubber inserts are wearing out and need replaced."

I agree the cross-spoke design of KKE/VMX wheels look cooler than Rally Raid's wheels, however, correction re Rally Raid: They do have tubeless; they are "...sealed with a tubeless conversion by Bartubeless, with a 4 year warranty on each wheel." Their lack of current availability and the more permanent nature of metal instead of the 4-year-and-you're-own-your own Bartubeless conversion are what caused me to consider KKE/VMX (along with the cool look of cross-spoked design).
 

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Update:

First, my KKE/VMX wheels are fully installed (pictures below). They spin smoothly and there is no lateral play. I can't test ride them yet because I need a fork part that was missing from my Rally Raid fork kit and they say I shouldn't ride it until that part is received and installed. They've air expressed it to me, but it will be a few days before I have it.

Second, KKE responded to my query about replacement parts. She usually replies within 1-2 business days. This time, 4 business days had gone by and I sent a second email as a nudge. She responded the next day. First, she apologized for the delay in responding because they were in the middle of the Chinese New Year holidays. I knew about these holidays, but never thought about what it would mean in this situation, a cultural lesson for me. Here's her response on replacement parts (quoted but with language corrections): For these wheels and some parts, if you need to replace them in the future, you only can buy from us, because these parts are different from OEM factory wheels, actually, these spoked wheels are just modified from OEM factory wheels. Her email address throughout our conversations has been sales03 at kkeracing.com; she's been using the name Jennie, though the address shows as Cecilia. Despite this, based on the language patterns, I do believe I've been corresponding with the same person the whole time.

Last, so, my question to you folks: I'm inclined to stock up on a set of cush drive absorbers and a some spokes, does anyone here have any experience/recommendations on how many spokes I should stock up on? In other words, has anyone here ever had to replace spokes, how many, and why?

Automotive parking light Tire Land vehicle Fuel tank Wheel


Tire Wheel Automotive lighting Automotive tire Motor vehicle
 

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Update: I just completed BMW's two day adventure training course in Greer, SC, using my KKE/VMX equipped G310GS. I have a background that includes military operational testing and, based on those principles, I now consider these KKE/VMX wheels to be operationally suitable and effective. They worked great and got a lot of compliments from my fellow students, BMW's mechanics who take care of their school bikes, and the instructors.

@JerryG Offtopic, What Handlebar and exhaust did you fit to the bike?
My handlebars are Fat Bars by Renthal mounted on G310GS Fat Bar risers by Rally Raid, both bought from Rally Raid.
 
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