Considering an LT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 40 Old Jun 1st, 2015, 1:12 pm Thread Starter
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Considering an LT

Hello everyone,

I am the current owner of a Honda CTX700N and am considering purchasing an '05 K1200LT.

My concerns are the weight moving from my CTX and the many many comments of how top heavy it is when riding slow speed.

When I go to look at the bike, what are the main things I should be looking at to feel confident I am making a good purchase?

I realize that it is a rather broad question but a few pointers would be awesome!

Thanks,
Ryan
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post #2 of 40 Old Jun 1st, 2015, 1:22 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

Ryan,

as long as you can reach the ground (flat foot) you should be good. the top heaviness is fact and requires some getting used to. The bike is extremely comfortable for long distances and very stable.
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post #3 of 40 Old Jun 1st, 2015, 1:23 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

I bought an '00 last November. I wanted the right mileage and all service records. I became the 4th owner of the bike, and the service records went back to day 1 (including the names and addresses of the previous owners). Once I reviewed the records (and had spent a lot of time on this site and YouTube), I was comfortable with the bike. I figured I would be doing some upgrades and no doubt some repairs, but the records showed that the previous owners at least attempted to keep the bike in great shape. That's all I cared about.

2000 BMW K1200 LT (Alice)
Gone, but not forgotten:
1983 Venture Royale
1982 Goldwing Aspencade
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Katy, TX
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post #4 of 40 Old Jun 1st, 2015, 1:40 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evansrj View Post
Hello everyone,

I am the current owner of a Honda CTX700N and am considering purchasing an '05 K1200LT.

My concerns are the weight moving from my CTX and the many many comments of how top heavy it is when riding slow speed.

When I go to look at the bike, what are the main things I should be looking at to feel confident I am making a good purchase?

I realize that it is a rather broad question but a few pointers would be awesome!

Thanks,
Ryan
I have not ridden a CTX700, but looking at the specs shows that the LT is nearly twice the weight and has a 3" or so higher seat. This is a rather dramatic change. If you are an experienced rider, the transition should be very manageable. If you are relatively inexperienced, and I'm stereotyping here, but the CTX700 has "novice rider" written all over it, then this is probably going to be a challenging transition.

Not impossible at all though. I moved from a Kawasaki KH400 to a Voyager XII. I rode it about 700 miles to break it in and then headed cross country to Utah with the wife and fully loaded bike. Had a great trip. Only took a couple hundred miles to feel comfortable on it.

Everyone complains about the LT having a high CG. I don't know the CG of the LT as compared to my Voyager, but I saw little difference. The issue is these bikes weigh 900+ lbs loaded and ready to travel. That is a lot of weight! Get them leaned over very far and they are hard to hold up. And CG height only matters if you let the bike get leaned over. When vertical, CG is of no consequence.

The key is knowing how to ride. Keep your eyes focused ahead of you. Don't look down at the front wheel. Maintain situational awareness. Don't come to a stop on a slope or an oil patch (toll booths can be tricky).

Many complain about the servo brakes and say not to use the brakes unless the front wheel is straight. Again, the key is knowing how to ride. Just as with power brakes in a car, you can't apply them with the same force as manual brakes. I use my front brake all the time when turning at slow speeds. Not a problem if you remember you have power brakes and use them accordingly.

The main things to think about are:

1. What is your mission for the LT? Why do you want one?

2. Are you either independently wealthy or do you really like working on your bikes? The LT requires probably 3X as much attention per mile (maintenance and repairs) as the most troublesome Honda. Are you prepared for that?
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2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #5 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:05 am
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Re: Considering an LT

I have to take exception to the "flat foot" comment, I can flat foot my LT easily but have to slide up on the seat a little to do so. I normally just use my toes, as it is easier than having to change my seating position. As many LT riders have found, you must keep the bike upright....It is damn heavy, and once it starts to go, your best bet is to just step clear, and worry about picking it up after, as you won't be able to muscle it to stop it from going down, So I'm not sure how flat footing it is going to help when you can't hold it up when it decides to take a nap anyway, no matter what your foot position is. It is all about respecting the weight, and the things you adjust your riding to (actually stopping) to keep the bike upright. The one thing you must keep in mind above all is that this is a great riding bike, performs and tours with the best! any of the issues with weight, center of gravity, maintenance all melt away as you head off into the sunset on one sweet ride!!! Good luck on your choice.

RICH CANNON
2000 K1200LT "a great ride"
2002 GL1800 powerful, but boring..(gone)
1979 XS1100 (gone)
1986 VT500 Ascot (gone)
1972 Honda 500-4 (gone)
1961 Lambretta (way gone)
1962 Allstate Compact (gone but not forgotten)
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post #6 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:19 am
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Re: Considering an LT

Consider riding it without the trunk. I'm sure there is a rack that will cover up the back end. This will reduce the C of G till you get used to the weight and power.


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post #7 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:25 am
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Re: Considering an LT

I agree with everything #5 says about the Lt. I'm on my toes and had to learn how to handle the beast and was scared to say the least. I use it as a daily driver also so I feel very comfortable in town. Just respect your limits until you grow into the bike as it does take some time coming from a smaller bike. Mine had 30,000 miles on it and no maintenance records at all. Good luck.

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post #8 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:54 am
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Re: Considering an LT

Just bought my '02 last fall and love it!

- read the owner's manual before you look at it so you are familiar with all it's bells and whistles. Make sure everything works and be prepared to spend $500 to $1,000 for each item that needs fixing. $3,000 if the ABS is faulty.

- if it has original shocks they will likely need to be replaced by now even if low original miles.
- early models will likely require upgraded throttle cables because of stiff throttle action
- original break lines may need replacing
- mirrors are break-away and mounting sockets sometimes break
- final drives get noisey when they are about to fail ($2,000)
-be very careful if you are not used to power ABS brakes. I use only 1 or 2 fingers on the lever. Under 10mph try foot brake only until you get used to the power assist.
- it's a heavy beast with poor low end torque so it will require will require 2,500 rpm or more to get her moving.

Wayne
"We ought never do wrong when anyone is looking" Mark Twain

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post #9 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 7:35 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by Tarmac View Post
-be very careful if you are not used to power ABS brakes. I use only 1 or 2 fingers on the lever. Under 10mph try foot brake only until you get used to the power assist.
- it's a heavy beast with poor low end torque so it will require will require 2,500 rpm or more to get her moving.
You must really love the smell of burning clutch... I launch mine at 1200-1500 RPM even fully loaded with wife in tow and have ZERO problems. The motor has plenty of torque for starts. Its by no means a torque monster but it gets the job done.

Also I didnt really notice any major differences with the boosted brakes other than that they were boosted. Mine is a 99 and is very smooth and linear. I am used to high performance sportbike brakes though so that may be it. Hell, my RC51, you look at the lever wrong and it will throw you over the bars. Thats what braided lines and brembo master cylinders do tho.

I almost never touch the rear brake on the LT for standard maneuvering unless i need to swing in a tight turn, i may drag the rear a bit to assist with that.

the weight can be troublesome but I found it more than manageable. I am also 6'4" and 240lbs so that probably makes things easier. I will admit that I struggle to move it around the garage and driveway not under its own power. In terms of stopping though, you should never let any bike come to a stop leaned at all. This one is no exception and will definitely let you know when you have. Mine has tried to take a few naps on me but I have managed to keep her awake so far.

- Justin

Justin - Las Vegas, NV
"Never do anything that you wouldn't want to have to explain to the paramedics"

2002 Honda RC51 "Tia"
1999 BMW K1200LT "Elsa"
2006 Kawasaki EX250 Scrambler "Vyrus"
1983 Honda V45 Magna "Mini-Maggie"
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post #10 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 8:55 am
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Re: Considering an LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarmac View Post
Just bought my '02 last fall and love it!

- read the owner's manual before you look at it so you are familiar with all it's bells and whistles. Make sure everything works and be prepared to spend $500 to $1,000 for each item that needs fixing. $3,000 if the ABS is faulty.

- if it has original shocks they will likely need to be replaced by now even if low original miles.
- early models will likely require upgraded throttle cables because of stiff throttle action
- original break lines may need replacing
- mirrors are break-away and mounting sockets sometimes break
- final drives get noisey when they are about to fail ($2,000)
-be very careful if you are not used to power ABS brakes. I use only 1 or 2 fingers on the lever. Under 10mph try foot brake only until you get used to the power assist.
- it's a heavy beast with poor low end torque so it will require will require 2,500 rpm or more to get her moving.
2,500! Wow, you must replace your clutch every 10,000 miles.

I find I can launch at 1,200 or a little more if I am on the level and have no need to hurry. On a hill, it does sometimes take 2,000 or more.

I don't think the issue is lack of torque so much as improper gearing. The LT first gear is WAY too tall. The BMW engineers were smoking something when they selected the gear ratios. My LT at idle in first gear moves at nearly 7.5 mph on the level. My Sonata is about half that and my old Chevy truck was less than that. If the LT had a proper first gear ratio, launching would be a piece of cake.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #11 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 9:04 am
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Re: Considering an LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarmac View Post
Just bought my '02 last fall and love it!

- read the owner's manual before you look at it so you are familiar with all it's bells and whistles. Make sure everything works and be prepared to spend $500 to $1,000 for each item that needs fixing. $3,000 if the ABS is faulty.

- if it has original shocks they will likely need to be replaced by now even if low original miles.
- early models will likely require upgraded throttle cables because of stiff throttle action
- original break lines may need replacing
- mirrors are break-away and mounting sockets sometimes break
- final drives get noisey when they are about to fail ($2,000)
-be very careful if you are not used to power ABS brakes. I use only 1 or 2 fingers on the lever. Under 10mph try foot brake only until you get used to the power assist.
- it's a heavy beast with poor low end torque so it will require will require 2,500 rpm or more to get her moving.
If you do your own wrenching and keep up on the maintenance, things aren't so expensive. Lots of the parts can be found used. I have seen Final Drives and ABS modules for less than $500. The final drive failure rate is only 4%, ABS modules much lower and rarely due to anything other than lack of maintenance. There are members on this board that do rebuilds on the final drives and some that can sometimes fix the ABS as well.

Don't let all the talk on forums sway you away from a great bike. Forums are generally used the most for trouble shooting so most of the posts seem negative.

As long as the weather permits my Lt is my main transport. I only use the cage if it's a family outing or I need to haul something big. Other than regular maintenance and tinkering with mods I have had very little reason to get into it.

The one major thing I have had was my own fault and was repaired with a part generously donated by wrencher extraordinaire John Z.

Great bike and even better community. BUY IT!
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post #12 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 9:07 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by That Guy View Post
You must really love the smell of burning clutch... I launch mine at 1200-1500 RPM even fully loaded with wife in tow and have ZERO problems. The motor has plenty of torque for starts. Its by no means a torque monster but it gets the job done.

Also I didnt really notice any major differences with the boosted brakes other than that they were boosted. Mine is a 99 and is very smooth and linear. I am used to high performance sportbike brakes though so that may be it. Hell, my RC51, you look at the lever wrong and it will throw you over the bars. Thats what braided lines and brembo master cylinders do tho.

I almost never touch the rear brake on the LT for standard maneuvering unless i need to swing in a tight turn, i may drag the rear a bit to assist with that.

the weight can be troublesome but I found it more than manageable. I am also 6'4" and 240lbs so that probably makes things easier. I will admit that I struggle to move it around the garage and driveway not under its own power. In terms of stopping though, you should never let any bike come to a stop leaned at all. This one is no exception and will definitely let you know when you have. Mine has tried to take a few naps on me but I have managed to keep her awake so far.

- Justin
I agree. The biggest problem is the too tall first gear. And with my LT, a pretty severe hesitation that occurs quite often, particularly in warm weather. Mine starts out pretty good when cold, but won't respond to throttle often when hot. It seemed to start when I had to start running E10 fuel, but I am not sure that is the problem. I have found a few places with real gas while traveling and, at least on one tank, that hasn't alleviated the problem. GS-911 says all is well and an Accelerator module did not help. It acts like an overly lean condition (don't see any black smoke when this happens so I suspect lean over rich) such as a vacuum leak can cause, but I have yet to find a problem. I am hoping I find something when I really strip it down for the clutch repair. I plan to pull the airbox, injectors, etc. and check the intake boots, etc. I may even replace the oxygen sensor even though it behaves fine according to the GS-911 graph.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #13 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 10:02 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
2,500! Wow, you must replace your clutch every 10,000 miles.

I find I can launch at 1,200 or a little more if I am on the level and have no need to hurry. On a hill, it does sometimes take 2,000 or more.
Good for you! You must be so proud!

The original post is from a perspective buyer with no LT experience. Trying to launch this beast for the 1st time at 1,200 rpm is a recipe for a stall and a nap IMHO! Better to over-rev and drive away than to lay it over and pay for damage!

Wayne
"We ought never do wrong when anyone is looking" Mark Twain

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post #14 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 10:24 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Good for you! You must be so proud!

The original post is from a perspective buyer with no LT experience. Trying to launch this beast for the 1st time at 1,200 rpm is a recipe for a stall and a nap IMHO! Better to over-rev and drive away than to lay it over and pay for damage!
All depends on his skill level and only he knows that. I didn't use more than 1,500 from the very first test ride to today 49,000 miles later, if on the level making a normal start. It is much better to learn the right technique from day one. Starting out routinely at 2,500 RPM, particularly with a dry clutch, is simply poor technique.

RPM that high should be used only in those circumstances that require it. Otherwise, you will be paying for clutch replacement which costs a lot more then low speed tip over damage.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #15 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 10:47 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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RPM that high should be used only in those circumstances that require it.
Agreed!
Test riding someone else's bike (a model you are not familiar with) IS one of those times.

Wayne
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post #16 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:09 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

I am a fairly new owner and I really feel I made a good decision buying the LT. I would say the bike is very cumbersome and top heavy at low speeds but maneuvers and handles like a dream above 20mph. Love leaning in the tight curves and taking the 35mph curves like a sport bike. However, getting her in and out of the garage or parking spot or sometimes even coming to a stop and getting going again is a challenge. I have about a thousand miles on mine in the last month and have laid her down though so I would say it is manageable.

There are definitely some annoying maintenance issues that you can read about all over this forum. For me I missed a leaky rear seal when I bought it and that was a little painful to have replaced financially. The radio has now gone out so I will send it out to have a new amp put in this fall. I had a couple of other minor things that I did that cost a few bucks. However, I knew what I was getting into.

The way I see it the bike was a great buy. I would have spent well over 10k for comparable Gold Wing so putting some money into it now again does not bother me. I love the look and I love the handling. I do not see an LT at every gas station in the summer and I like having a bike that is unique.

So I echo what the other guys have said. Top Heavy, yes, but only below 20mph. Expensive to service, sure if you go to the dealer. Mechanical issues, sure, more so than a Honda. Worth it, yes, every penny!. Good luk with your decision.
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post #17 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:36 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

One other thing to consider: The number of bikes on the road here seems to increase every year, I would imagine the same thing is happening all over the US as the last of the baby boomers are now in their fifties.

There are also more of the little scooters due to the rise of gas prices and the young folks that think they invented "being green." I see a lot of the scooter riders that soon decide they need something bigger/more powerful (have you ridden one of those little buggers in traffic on the freeway!)

So even if you get it and then decide it's not the bike for you, it shouldn't be hard to unload. Buy it then ride it!
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post #18 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 12:40 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Agreed!
Test riding someone else's bike (a model you are not familiar with) IS one of those times.
It appears it is for you. It isn't for me.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #19 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 2:18 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

I've had my 2001 LT-I for 2 years now and bought it with no knowledge of any of the issues mentioned on this forum. I got no maintenance records or manuals with it so it was WYSIWYG. That being said, after doing my best to bring all the maintenance up to current, I did find signs that the bike had been maintained like a K&N permanent air filter vs the original paper one and when I drained the tranny, I found it had red line gear lube in it and probably would have left it if i had known prior to draining. I also saw that the fuel filter and internal rubber had been replaced inside the tank. +1 on everything that has been said so far. When coming to a stop, don't try and be cool and keep your feet on the pegs till you reach a full stop. As said, if you get a slight lean and your front is turned, the likelihood of you setting it down is much higher. Mine has had 3 naps and all were because of getting stuck in a bad position at a stop. Bring along a really good flashlight and check up under the front light looking in at the top of the engine for oil. If there is oil there, the breather hose has deteriorated and is leaking oil vapor normally fed into the throttle body and that would be something to fix or get fixed. Several threads on that process and even making a permanent replacement out of copper if necessary as I did for mine. I love the bike and it rides like a dream even being 14 years old. Maintenance can be costly if you are not capable of wrenching most of it yourself but there are plenty of folks here to help with anything you want to undertake. Some things you can find after market non OEM like filters and other parts, just make sure they are proper fit so your fuel filter doesn't burst inside the tank or silly stuff like that. Even knowing all I know now, I would still probably buy another LT should this one decide to retire. Good luck with this one and i hope you are able to join the fold with arguably the best touring bike of its kind.

Gordon
Sugar Hill, GA
2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #20 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 3:36 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Good luck with this one and i hope you are able to join the fold with arguably the best touring bike of its kind.
I think you mean unarguably!
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post #21 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:09 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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I think you mean unarguably!
Some people will argue even knowing they are wrong. I just give them benefit of the doubt The only ones that would disagree, are the ones who truly couldn't afford to own one in the first place.

Gordon
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post #22 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:09 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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I think you mean unarguably!
You haven't visited the K1600 forum lately...

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1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #23 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:15 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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You haven't visited the K1600 forum lately...
I will visit that forum when I have a K1600.

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2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #24 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:21 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Some people will argue even knowing they are wrong. I just give them benefit of the doubt The only ones that would disagree, are the ones who truly couldn't afford to own one in the first place.
Most K1600 owners disagree. I've had good debates with a few. They can certainly afford an LT if you see what the 1600s sell for.

Depending on your touring style, the K1600 is superior. For my style, I still prefer the LT, but the Exclusive has raised the bar a little higher. I am not sure my wife would still like the GTLE better than our LT, but I will certainly try one given a chance to see if it really addresses some of the passenger comfort issues on the standard GTL.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #25 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:30 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
I will visit that forum when I have a K1600.
It is fun to visit occasionally. It is a much less active forum as I think many 1600 owners moved to a new venue, the name of which escapes me. Also, the good news is it appears the the 1600 has far fewer Achilles heels than does the LT. A few issues with weeping water pumps and switchgear, but things like clutches and slave cylinders seem to be trouble free. And even FD issues seem to not afflict the GTL very often.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #26 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 4:31 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
Most K1600 owners disagree. I've had good debates with a few. They can certainly afford an LT if you see what the 1600s sell for.

Depending on your touring style, the K1600 is superior. For my style, I still prefer the LT, but the Exclusive has raised the bar a little higher. I am not sure my wife would still like the GTLE better than our LT, but I will certainly try one given a chance to see if it really addresses some of the passenger comfort issues on the standard GTL.
Whether it is a step up or a step to the side, I can't say. I did look at one last time I was in the shop and it was impressive for sure.

As for the ones I was referring to that truly could not afford to own one, they bought one and realized it required maintenance with a relatively higher cost of ownership than lesser bikes and decided it was a bad bike on those criteria. Based on reading this forum and others for the last couple months, most fall in love and the cost of ownership is simply accepted as part of the package. I may end up on a 1600 at some point but I haven't worn out my LT yet

Gordon
Sugar Hill, GA
2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #27 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 5:29 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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You must really love the smell of burning clutch... I launch mine at 1200-1500 RPM even fully loaded with wife in tow and have ZERO problems. The motor has plenty of torque for starts. Its by no means a torque monster but it gets the job done.

Also I didnt really notice any major differences with the boosted brakes other than that they were boosted. Mine is a 99 and is very smooth and linear. I am used to high performance sportbike brakes though so that may be it. Hell, my RC51, you look at the lever wrong and it will throw you over the bars. Thats what braided lines and brembo master cylinders do tho.

I almost never touch the rear brake on the LT for standard maneuvering unless i need to swing in a tight turn, i may drag the rear a bit to assist with that.

the weight can be troublesome but I found it more than manageable. I am also 6'4" and 240lbs so that probably makes things easier. I will admit that I struggle to move it around the garage and driveway not under its own power. In terms of stopping though, you should never let any bike come to a stop leaned at all. This one is no exception and will definitely let you know when you have. Mine has tried to take a few naps on me but I have managed to keep her awake so far.

- Justin
"Mine has tried to take a few naps on me but I have managed to keep her awake so far."

Justin, you shouldn't of said that, I hope she didn't hear you, between Karma and their mean sense of humor. Just saying....................

Scott
2007 LT
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post #28 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 5:49 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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"Mine has tried to take a few naps on me but I have managed to keep her awake so far."

Justin, you shouldn't of said that, I hope she didn't hear you, between Karma and their mean sense of humor. Just saying....................
Doesn't matter if she heard or not. It's going to happen.
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post #29 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 6:15 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Doesn't matter if she heard or not. It's going to happen.
I have no delusions that it wont happen eventually. Im just saying thus far.... I do sweet talk her and take her out frequently for a nice meal of premium fuel and occasionally spoil her with a synthetic oil change. hopefully I dont piss her off anytime soon. LOL

- J

Justin - Las Vegas, NV
"Never do anything that you wouldn't want to have to explain to the paramedics"

2002 Honda RC51 "Tia"
1999 BMW K1200LT "Elsa"
2006 Kawasaki EX250 Scrambler "Vyrus"
1983 Honda V45 Magna "Mini-Maggie"
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post #30 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 7:00 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

It would be good if you could have a forum member come with you to check it out. But if not here are some things to look for. Look at the bottom of the chassis and swingarm for oil drips. . A leak could mean a leaking slave cylinder or rear main seal. Check the rear wheel for freeplay While on its centerstand grab the top and bottom of the tire. Try moving it side to side. Play or movememt could mean a final drive on its way out. In general. Just test as much as you can. And test the radio. The radios in LTs are known to fry out the amps in the radios. Just make sure sound comes out both channels. If bike checks out. Go for it.

2004 K1200LT. Big Mama
1999 Suzuki Intruder VL1500LC. Betty Lou.
I'm a 4 percenter.
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post #31 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 8:16 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
Whether it is a step up or a step to the side, I can't say. I did look at one last time I was in the shop and it was impressive for sure.

As for the ones I was referring to that truly could not afford to own one, they bought one and realized it required maintenance with a relatively higher cost of ownership than lesser bikes and decided it was a bad bike on those criteria. Based on reading this forum and others for the last couple months, most fall in love and the cost of ownership is simply accepted as part of the package. I may end up on a 1600 at some point but I haven't worn out my LT yet
Good luck wearing out an LT!

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
1976 Kawasaki KH400
1973 Kawasaki 100 G5
1970 Rockford Chibi (the orange one)

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post #32 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 8:38 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Hello everyone,

I am the current owner of a Honda CTX700N and am considering purchasing an '05 K1200LT.

My concerns are the weight moving from my CTX and the many many comments of how top heavy it is when riding slow speed.

When I go to look at the bike, what are the main things I should be looking at to feel confident I am making a good purchase?

I realize that it is a rather broad question but a few pointers would be awesome!

Thanks,
Ryan
I have been riding my 99 LT for about 3 weeks. The first week was not great, getting used to a big top heavy bike. Week 2 was a mixed bag of really good stops and not so good wobbly stops, great turns and not so great wide turns. Today, start of week 3, I had that wow, I'm really starting to feel confident controlling this bike, moment(actually around an hour.) On today's ride, I had to basically walk the bike for a block or 2 in a construction zone, but instead of getting frustrated, I treated it as a balancing/slow acceleration exercise. Once I got out of the mess, I rode for another hour and thoroughly enjoyed it. The best tip I have benefitted from on this site is to look straight ahead when stopping, don't look down at the ground. Reduced my shaky stops by 95%. 2nd best tip, keep the wheel straight when stopping and starting. Still can't get it on the center stand, afraid it's going to tip over the other side, but I'm feeling good about this milestone also. Thanks again for all of the support and riding guidance on the site!
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post #33 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 9:02 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Good luck wearing out an LT!
I am very technical and a good mechanic so I am going to give it a good shot. parts availability would be my downfall. Only 52K on my 2001 so it has a long life ahead of it parts not withstanding.

Gordon
Sugar Hill, GA
2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #34 of 40 Old Jun 2nd, 2015, 10:12 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by james216 View Post
It would be good if you could have a forum member come with you to check it out. But if not here are some things to look for. Look at the bottom of the chassis and swingarm for oil drips. . A leak could mean a leaking slave cylinder or rear main seal. Check the rear wheel for freeplay While on its centerstand grab the top and bottom of the tire. Try moving it side to side. Play or movememt could mean a final drive on its way out. In general. Just test as much as you can. And test the radio. The radios in LTs are known to fry out the amps in the radios. Just make sure sound comes out both channels. If bike checks out. Go for it.
Yep, all that and again, look for signs of oil on the top of the engine indicating a breather tube failure and also do a 4th gear full throttle test to check the clutch for slippage also indicating either wear or oil contamination from a rear main or clutch slave leak. Listen for strange noises. Mine has a rattle/vibration noise I haven't yet identified. Sailor said he had an exhaust that was making noise because of a broken weld on the 4 into 1 cat converter and I haven't pulled my pipes to check that yet but it is a very pronounced noise as you rev the engine. Exhausts are expensive so I hope I can weld it if mine turns out to be that. Great bikes to ride as long as you can maintain them. If it looks good, get it and have some fun.

Gordon
Sugar Hill, GA
2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #35 of 40 Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 1:53 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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I have to take exception to the "flat foot" comment, I can flat foot my LT easily but have to slide up on the seat a little to do so. I normally just use my toes, as it is easier than having to change my seating position. As many LT riders have found, you must keep the bike upright....It is damn heavy, and once it starts to go, your best bet is to just step clear, and worry about picking it up after, as you won't be able to muscle it to stop it from going down, So I'm not sure how flat footing it is going to help when you can't hold it up when it decides to take a nap anyway, no matter what your foot position is. It is all about respecting the weight, and the things you adjust your riding to (actually stopping) to keep the bike upright. The one thing you must keep in mind above all is that this is a great riding bike, performs and tours with the best! any of the issues with weight, center of gravity, maintenance all melt away as you head off into the sunset on one sweet ride!!! Good luck on your choice.
For those with a challenged inseam length, I might suggest trying a logging boot which adds height due to it's thicker sole & heel. I sometimes use a pair of mid-calf Carhart boots. The almost 2" heel brings the ground closer and I get to experience what it's like to be 6' tall. lol
Also, I like the heavy lug sole which helps me maintain traction when I put a foot down. Of course, they are insulated & made for lumberjack types to scamper in the snowy woods all day so maybe not perfect for hot weather. But they are super comfy and when the NW gets chilly (like at night), they keep toes toasty. I torture tested them in the Feb Owner's News (Racing The Storm).
But seriously, a taller sole has been handy at times, giving me more leverage & therefore power to handle the big bike, when I stop on uneven pavement or gravel. Totally, waterproof. A little mink oil keeps them that way.
Bob

2005 KLT Graphite Gray
2003 F650GS Black
*Too slow for fast women
*A little adventure is good for the soul
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post #36 of 40 Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 7:56 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Doesn't matter if she heard or not. It's going to happen.
TRUE DAT

Scott
2007 LT
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post #37 of 40 Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 8:01 am
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Re: Considering an LT

I’m with Voyager and talking about starting out the LT. Something in the 1200 RPM range seems to do fine on level to near level ground. You will need to obviously use some caution and common sense but if you are leveled headed and careful in your riding you shouldn’t have a problem transitioning from the CTX700. You know the basics of riding and the rules of the road, you’ll only need to focus on the running of the bike, learning the switchology, quirks, etc. I had not ridden in several years when I started back out on a Gold Wing GL1100 barn find. After much maintenance, brakes, tires, forks, differential, etc. I started riding it ever so cautiously at first, just getting the feel of the bike and started building my confidence in the bike and myself. I really feel (but I love tinkering at heart) that you need to also do some of the simple maintenance on a bike to help build your confidence in what you are riding. Oil changes, brake fluid, differential, transmission, coolant, etc. are all pretty basic. You have to pull the Tupperware off to get at the stuff and you can kind of assess what is under the plastic, look for mice nests, etc. One last thing you might consider after riding it awhile get into probably a Experienced Riders course as a good refresher of what your abilities are and how to better handle the LT. The LT is not a light bike to maneuver in your garage or to move around but it isn't insurmountable.
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post #38 of 40 Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 8:54 am
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Re: Considering an LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evansrj View Post
Hello everyone,

I am the current owner of a Honda CTX700N and am considering purchasing an '05 K1200LT.

My concerns are the weight moving from my CTX and the many many comments of how top heavy it is when riding slow speed.

When I go to look at the bike, what are the main things I should be looking at to feel confident I am making a good purchase?

I realize that it is a rather broad question but a few pointers would be awesome!

Thanks,
Ryan

Go for it. Just take your time and do your due diligence on each prospective bike. I would not by a bike that does not have complete maintenance records, manuals, two sets of FOB's/keys, looks dirty or has hack job work and accessories put on it. Try to find as stock a unit as possible then you know the wiring has not been carved up or the tupperware and structure butchered to install over the top farkles. The thought is the more pristine the the bike and well kept the records and manuals are the owner was not a shit head and the chance of buying a beater is reduced drastically. I would also get an 05 or later unless budget is tight. If you can have a forum member, knowledgeable LT owner or BMW mechanic go with to look and test ride it that would be #1 . I hate to be negative but unfortunately some nice looking seemingly honest people will straight face lie about the condition of the bike and you really have to assume all the responsibility yourself to check it out.
I have owned my 07 since 08 and can't imagine a better touring bike and I have test ridden an Exclusive, Goldwing, Harley's, Trophy's and the like. Not saying some day I won't move on but right now I'm in love with that big heavy black girl.

Good luck

Scott
2007 LT
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post #39 of 40 Old Jun 3rd, 2015, 9:56 am
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by want2tour View Post
For those with a challenged inseam length, I might suggest trying a logging boot which adds height due to it's thicker sole & heel. I sometimes use a pair of mid-calf Carhart boots. The almost 2" heel brings the ground closer and I get to experience what it's like to be 6' tall. lol
Also, I like the heavy lug sole which helps me maintain traction when I put a foot down. Of course, they are insulated & made for lumberjack types to scamper in the snowy woods all day so maybe not perfect for hot weather. But they are super comfy and when the NW gets chilly (like at night), they keep toes toasty. I torture tested them in the Feb Owner's News (Racing The Storm).
But seriously, a taller sole has been handy at times, giving me more leverage & therefore power to handle the big bike, when I stop on uneven pavement or gravel. Totally, waterproof. A little mink oil keeps them that way.
Bob
Exactly. I've posted about this before. I have a 29.5" inseam and the extra heel height of logging boots allows me to flat-foot and the high traction open lug soles is a bonus for sure-footedness. My wife calls them my Elton John boots but so be it. Mine are "Irish Setter" brand from Red Wing Shoes and are all day comfy once broken it. Even though insulated they are not hot in the summer. The soles are not too thick to interfere with shifting.

Jim
2003 BMW K1200LT (my favorite 2 wheeled land yacht)
2008 Yamaha FJR1300 (recent addition)
1982 Yamaha Vision (long gone)
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post #40 of 40 Old Jun 5th, 2015, 3:21 pm
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Re: Considering an LT

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Originally Posted by Tarmac View Post
Just bought my '02 last fall and love it!

- read the owner's manual before you look at it so you are familiar with all it's bells and whistles. Make sure everything works and be prepared to spend $500 to $1,000 for each item that needs fixing. $3,000 if the ABS is faulty.

- if it has original shocks they will likely need to be replaced by now even if low original miles.
- early models will likely require upgraded throttle cables because of stiff throttle action
- original break lines may need replacing
- mirrors are break-away and mounting sockets sometimes break
- final drives get noisey when they are about to fail ($2,000)
-be very careful if you are not used to power ABS brakes. I use only 1 or 2 fingers on the lever. Under 10mph try foot brake only until you get used to the power assist.
- it's a heavy beast with poor low end torque so it will require will require 2,500 rpm or more to get her moving.
Seriously???
My 2K LT has 45K miles, original shocks, rides fine, I have replaced the head temp sensor.. $80, rebuilt final drive... $375, original throttle cables.. work great! One cracked mounting clip on one mirror..superglue and grease works great! ABS system is not linked, but I just brake as normal, as should you, except that the ABS will save your bacon when you have to do an emergency stop, and won't put you into an uncontrolled slide from which you cannot recover....Yes, it is heavy, it is not a Harley, but having to rev to 2500 to get it going??? Nahhh...no more than any other motorcycle that can develop 2500rpm to make it run down the road...original brake lines..still going strong,
I guess what I'm saying is, don't let someones personal "opinion" about all these issues be the reason to say no to an LT...I personally don't care if you get one or not, I love mine, and would only want you to make your decision about your purchase based on realistic facts. Oh, and here's another fact, The LT is an amazing ride!!
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RICH CANNON
2000 K1200LT "a great ride"
2002 GL1800 powerful, but boring..(gone)
1979 XS1100 (gone)
1986 VT500 Ascot (gone)
1972 Honda 500-4 (gone)
1961 Lambretta (way gone)
1962 Allstate Compact (gone but not forgotten)
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