Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 10:53 am Thread Starter
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Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

I have a 2006 LT and my wife and I just returned from a cross country trip (Charleston - California - Oregon - Banff - Charleston). The bike broke down in the middle of nowhere and had to be towed 175 miles to a dealer. Turned out to be a rubber hose on the fuel pump had developed a leak. $450 later we were back on the road. The mechanic said these things were to be expected in an 11 year old bike. He also mentioned I should probably preemptivley change all the brake lines. Additionally, my clutch began to slip a bit this trip so a new clutch is in my future. On another trip a couple of years ago my ABS pump went and it was in the shop for 4 months with the part on backorder.

We are considering a new bike but we love the LT. My question is if we are going to be able to rely on the LT for long trips to nowhere what else do I need to be concerned about? What maintenance can I do preemptively to improve reliability? I am not talking about routine maintenance (I always do that) but things like replacing the brake lines (as suggested by the menchanic) just because of age. Any advice would be appreciated but I am leaning toward a new bike. Problem is I know there is no replacement for this baby.
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post #2 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 11:38 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWprofessor View Post
I have a 2006 LT and my wife and I just returned from a cross country trip (Charleston - California - Oregon - Banff - Charleston). The bike broke down in the middle of nowhere and had to be towed 175 miles to a dealer. Turned out to be a rubber hose on the fuel pump had developed a leak. $450 later we were back on the road. The mechanic said these things were to be expected in an 11 year old bike. He also mentioned I should probably preemptivley change all the brake lines. Additionally, my clutch began to slip a bit this trip so a new clutch is in my future. On another trip a couple of years ago my ABS pump went and it was in the shop for 4 months with the part on backorder.

We are considering a new bike but we love the LT. My question is if we are going to be able to rely on the LT for long trips to nowhere what else do I need to be concerned about? What maintenance can I do preemptively to improve reliability? I am not talking about routine maintenance (I always do that) but things like replacing the brake lines (as suggested by the menchanic) just because of age. Any advice would be appreciated but I am leaning toward a new bike. Problem is I know there is no replacement for this baby.
Well. The clutch to have it done is about $2200. And. While it's apart. Replace the clutch slave cylinder and rear engine seals. You don't want have to go back in again. And Yes. The spiegler brake line kit too. Runs about $240. You can do it yourself if you choose. Once those are done. Regular flushing the ABS ,your pump should be ok. The lines for the fuel pump. There is a member here. I think it's Voyager. Found an alternative for the overpriced rubber lines that last. But your new lines are ok for now.It depends on you and how much you love it. But once you get those things straightened away. It's a great bike. Oh. The dreaded FD is always a concern. But more so on earlier models 1999/2002. Mine is a 2004 and it failed. Saddleman rebuilt it. And it's been great. But. If you decide to part with it. Ride several machines and decide what best suits you.

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post #3 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 12:12 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by BMWprofessor View Post
I have a 2006 LT and my wife and I just returned from a cross country trip (Charleston - California - Oregon - Banff - Charleston). The bike broke down in the middle of nowhere and had to be towed 175 miles to a dealer. Turned out to be a rubber hose on the fuel pump had developed a leak. $450 later we were back on the road. The mechanic said these things were to be expected in an 11 year old bike. He also mentioned I should probably preemptivley change all the brake lines. Additionally, my clutch began to slip a bit this trip so a new clutch is in my future. On another trip a couple of years ago my ABS pump went and it was in the shop for 4 months with the part on backorder.

We are considering a new bike but we love the LT. My question is if we are going to be able to rely on the LT for long trips to nowhere what else do I need to be concerned about? What maintenance can I do preemptively to improve reliability? I am not talking about routine maintenance (I always do that) but things like replacing the brake lines (as suggested by the menchanic) just because of age. Any advice would be appreciated but I am leaning toward a new bike. Problem is I know there is no replacement for this baby.
The biggest thing is are you willing to pay someone to do these repairs and sink a few grand into the bike if you are not able to do your own clutch and brake lines? An 06 if a very serviceable year but they can be expensive if you have to pay someone else for the labor.


As James said, there is an alternative to the rubber lines inside the tank from Euro Motoelectric but if you have recently done them, I wouldn't worry too much about them for a while.

Brake lines are a must for reliability and although you might have another couple years before they give out, know that they will and changing them to Spieglers is peace of mind that they will be there when you need them. They are getting old and they go from the inside out so you can't see it coming and whatever deterioration happens inside, can find its way to the ABS unit and cause grief there.

The clutch job usually includes several trans seals ( input and output shaft as well as the slave shaft ) along the way and possibly a new Clutch slave while you are at it. Doing the rear main seal while the clutch is out might also be a good idea but some have decided not to. It costs just as much to do that seal should it start to leak as it does to replace the clutch minus the clutch parts as it all has to come out again. My recommendation would be do it while you are in and have that much more confidence far from home.

06 and up had fewer crown failures but if you really like the bike, a preemptive rebuild of that by Saddleman would put your bike in good shape for many miles and the LT crowd has voiced their opinion that as much as they may like their new bike, it isn't an LT. I have an 01 and have done all that and none of it was bad at the time save 2 bust brake lines. I just love the bike that much that I want to keep it for many years and do plan on some long trips in the future.

Good luck in your decision. My opinion is, if you like the bike and can afford to do the mentioned repairs, it should be pretty reliable for quite awhile. You didn't mention how many miles are on it though.
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post #4 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 12:37 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

I say park a new bike under the radiator cap. If I can get one more year out of mine and not be upside down on the loan, I'm either getting a K1600GTL or Goldwing. If the news of the new 121 CI Hardley are true, I might consider buying the engine as a crate motor and putting it on an post 2004 Ultra Classic...

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post #5 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 4:18 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Thanks for the comments. This is a tough decision. My choices are limited - Goldwing (old technology) - HD? Nope - K1600GTLE? - It seems BMW is having an identity crisis re: touring bikes. A bagger? Really? Why couldnt they just tweak the 1600. Bring back the reverse gear for example (which they are apparently doing with the B). I forgot to mention the milage of my '06 LT is 65K.
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post #6 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 4:24 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

I have an '07 with 25k.
The only major thing that I'm concerned about is the stupid servo brakes. Everything else is solid.


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post #7 of 23 Old Jul 1st, 2017, 6:12 pm
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The prpblem with pre emptive repairs is that you can psych yourself out. For example I just got back from a 48 State Motorcycle tour. I have a 2002 LT and my riding partner has a 2000 1150 GS. The bikes share many of the same parts. We also have approximately the same mileage. His broke down 3 times and mine did not at all. His rear end bearings went out and his hall effect sensor went out and each cost him about $750 to repair on the road plus several days of downtime and hotel rooms.

Luck of the draw? Maybe. If you do your own repairs then you can do a lot more to the bike because the dealer can be frighteningly expensive. Parts are expensive enough but with their expensive labor..... well you get the picture. The pre-emptive work I did was I replaced the fuel line and fuel filter and the radiator cap and spark plugs and spark plug wires. I probably should have done the brake lines but they worked great but that will be top of the list. What about rubber hoses and what about flushing the radiator? On a bike that's over 10 years old you never know what's going to go. Best thing to do is take a look at everything and if there's any kind of sign of weakness in the hoses or anything else just replace it. If you do the rear bearing it may be $250 in Parts but if you have to do it on the road you can be a thousand when all is said and done. Anyway that's my two cents
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post #8 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 12:23 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

R
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWprofessor View Post
Thanks for the comments. This is a tough decision. My choices are limited - Goldwing (old technology) - HD? Nope - K1600GTLE? - It seems BMW is having an identity crisis re: touring bikes. A bagger? Really? Why couldnt they just tweak the 1600. Bring back the reverse gear for example (which they are apparently doing with the B). I forgot to mention the milage of my '06 LT is 65K.
I believe they are bringing back reverse on the GTL also. And 65K is nothing for a Flying brick K motor. They run forever. The LT is a one of a kind tourer probably never to be duplicated again. A Goldwing, Though nice,It isn't an LT. I know. I've been through the same struggle as you.What do I do to replace the LT? Which is why I won't let it go. Comfort wise. The only bike that was close was a Victory Vision. But looks and storage wise it's Not in the same class as an LT. It's tough when there is no real replacement.
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post #9 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 10:19 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by mondrage View Post
I have an '07 with 25k.
The only major thing that I'm concerned about is the stupid servo brakes. Everything else is solid.


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I thought that at 25K also. Then my FD started leaking from the pinion seal and my engine starting leaking under the bell housing. Then around 40K my clutch started slipping and a severe hesitation off-idle set in. I fixed all except the FD myself last spring. Took five weeks and was an intense job. I sent the FD to Tom Cutter and that took five weeks also.

I wish you better luck than I've had.

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post #10 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 10:25 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by james216 View Post
R

I believe they are bringing back reverse on the GTL also. And 65K is nothing for a Flying brick K motor. They run forever. The LT is a one of a kind tourer probably never to be duplicated again. A Goldwing, Though nice,It isn't an LT. I know. I've been through the same struggle as you.What do I do to replace the LT? Which is why I won't let it go. Comfort wise. The only bike that was close was a Victory Vision. But looks and storage wise it's Not in the same class as an LT. It's tough when there is no real replacement.
The Vision was butt ugly and is no more in any event. I have pretty much given up on BMW. I was hopeful about the new Venture until I saw "air cooled V-twin." What were they thinking? My only hope now is the rumored new Gold Wing with a hybrid drivetrain for better mileage and supposedly a "novel" suspension that sounds like telelever and paralever. However, I am sure that is too good to be true and maybe the Wing will shed a few pounds and finally get an electrically adjustable windshield.

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post #11 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 10:47 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
I thought that at 25K also. Then my FD started leaking from the pinion seal and my engine starting leaking under the bell housing. Then around 40K my clutch started slipping and a severe hesitation off-idle set in. I fixed all except the FD myself last spring. Took five weeks and was an intense job. I sent the FD to Tom Cutter and that took five weeks also.



I wish you better luck than I've had.


Yeah, I'm aware of the engine seal leaking into the clutch and FD.

After my stubbornness of keeping a K12R running (the only thing I have not replaced is the frame, fuel tank and fairing), all other bikes seem tame by comparison.

Even my GS had the FD failed at 15k mi.

The LT so far has only the stupid servo brakes replaced. At ~$4k. !!!!

I'm trying to sell it, but only because I want a S1XR and I hardly ride it anymore.
It's a real shame to let it go... but it'd be very irresponsible to have another bike without letting go of at least one...


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post #12 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 10:57 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Yeah, I'm aware of the engine seal leaking into the clutch and FD.

After my stubbornness of keeping a K12R running (the only thing I have not replaced is the frame, fuel tank and fairing), all other bikes seem tame by comparison.

Even my GS had the FD failed at 15k mi.

The LT so far has only the stupid servo brakes replaced. At ~$4k. !!!!

I'm trying to sell it, but only because I want a S1XR and I hardly ride it anymore.
It's a real shame to let it go... but it'd be very irresponsible to have another bike without letting go of at least one...


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Mine was actually transmission seals rather than engine. All three rotating shaft seals were leaking. Front input shaft seal took out the clutch. Rear input shaft seal leaked into the slave cylinder boss. Rear output shaft seal leaked into the swing arm making me think I'd had a second pinion seal failure. Must have been a Monday morning transmission...

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post #13 of 23 Old Jul 3rd, 2017, 4:03 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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The Vision was butt ugly and is no more in any event. I have pretty much given up on BMW. I was hopeful about the new Venture until I saw "air cooled V-twin." What were they thinking? My only hope now is the rumored new Gold Wing with a hybrid drivetrain for better mileage and supposedly a "novel" suspension that sounds like telelever and paralever. However, I am sure that is too good to be true and maybe the Wing will shed a few pounds and finally get an electrically adjustable windshield.
Agree on all accounts. The Vision though comfortable was UGLY. And your asking for the impossible with the Wing. Your setting yourself up for disappointment. Honda is too concerned with safety to let the driver adjust the windshield while riding. Wing owners have had the power windshield complaint for years.Same with the GPS. You have to stop to enter route changes. The Venture. What a shame. They blew it. Too bad.What a beautiful bike.
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post #14 of 23 Old Jul 4th, 2017, 8:16 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Yeah, I'm aware of the engine seal leaking into the clutch and FD.

After my stubbornness of keeping a K12R running (the only thing I have not replaced is the frame, fuel tank and fairing), all other bikes seem tame by comparison.

Even my GS had the FD failed at 15k mi.

The LT so far has only the stupid servo brakes replaced. At ~$4k. !!!!

I'm trying to sell it, but only because I want a S1XR and I hardly ride it anymore.
It's a real shame to let it go... but it'd be very irresponsible to have another bike without letting go of at least one...


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Irresponsible??? Hell, my brother has 9 bikes!!! Let's see, an 86 bare Goldwing 1000, 88 bare Wing 1100, 94 1500 Valkyrie (still a naked wing), 95 1500 Wing fully loaded with side car, 89 fully loaded and chromed out 1100 wing (motor has 340k and still runs like a new one), 89 fully loaded wing donor bike (missing some parts to keep the other going) 95 Honda Magna 750 and a 2014 1800 Fully loaded wing. And all but the donor bike are registered and ridable. Screw responsible, enjoy them all!!!

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post #15 of 23 Old Jul 4th, 2017, 8:22 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Well, I've already sold my '78 Honda CB550 that I couldn't import to Nicaragua... a real shame.
Sold my '09 Sportster. I miss it from time to time.
Just sold my DRZ400E... dunno.

But I still have my franken bike the K1200R. The LT and my GS...
Also in the process of an engine change is K12S that I might keep and a R12R that I've been lusting over for a long time.

But I want that S1XR


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post #16 of 23 Old Jul 5th, 2017, 6:27 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWprofessor View Post
Thanks for the comments. This is a tough decision. My choices are limited - Goldwing (old technology) - HD? Nope - K1600GTLE? - It seems BMW is having an identity crisis re: touring bikes. A bagger? Really? Why couldnt they just tweak the 1600. Bring back the reverse gear for example (which they are apparently doing with the B). I forgot to mention the milage of my '06 LT is 65K.
They have introduced the reverse in the 2018 GTL's!

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post #17 of 23 Old Jul 5th, 2017, 2:16 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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I have a 2006 LT and my wife and I just returned from a cross country trip (Charleston - California - Oregon - Banff - Charleston). The bike broke down in the middle of nowhere and had to be towed 175 miles to a dealer. Turned out to be a rubber hose on the fuel pump had developed a leak. $450 later we were back on the road. The mechanic said these things were to be expected in an 11 year old bike. He also mentioned I should probably preemptivley change all the brake lines. Additionally, my clutch began to slip a bit this trip so a new clutch is in my future. On another trip a couple of years ago my ABS pump went and it was in the shop for 4 months with the part on backorder.

We are considering a new bike but we love the LT. My question is if we are going to be able to rely on the LT for long trips to nowhere what else do I need to be concerned about? What maintenance can I do preemptively to improve reliability? I am not talking about routine maintenance (I always do that) but things like replacing the brake lines (as suggested by the menchanic) just because of age. Any advice would be appreciated but I am leaning toward a new bike. Problem is I know there is no replacement for this baby.
I have posted in the past that the rubber hoses used by BMW in the fuel tank will leave you stranded on the side of the road. Happened to me on my R1150RT but luckily I was less than 100 miles from home. After getting the bike home and taking the fuel pump assembly out I found one the hoses had a small tare. When I checked the hoses on my K1200LT they were cracked and it was just a matter of time before they started to leak. All it takes is a 1/8 inch tear in the hose to reduce fuel pressure enough that the motor wont run. So anyone who has the original hoses in their tanks, replace them before what happened above happens to you. And don't replace the hoses with the same crappy BMW hoses that cost a fortune, use this stuff. Flexible In-Tank Fuel Hose Kit

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post #18 of 23 Old Jul 7th, 2017, 8:42 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

You're right. There is no replacement for her. I have a 2000LT and would go anywhere on her. Can't imagine any other bike that would make me happier.
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post #19 of 23 Old Jul 7th, 2017, 8:59 am
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by greg.polakow View Post
You're right. There is no replacement for her. I have a 2000LT and would go anywhere on her. Can't imagine any other bike that would make me happier.
I can easily imagine one. The LT with:
1. 1500cc engine tuned for low-end torque with lower compression and knock sensor to burn 85 octane fuel without detonation
2. 6 speed transmission with much lower first gear and higher high gear and bearings sized for the torque and seals that don't leak and seat against a shoulder. Depth sensitive seals are simply lousy engineering.
3. Wet clutch
4. Driveshaft with replaceable u-joints and no rubber coupler to fail
5. Final drive that is bullet proof and can be correctly assembled without special tools by a trained monkey
6. Hydraulic lifters that never need adjustment
7. All filters (air, fuel and oil) that can be accessed with the removal of no more than one body panel
8. External spin-on oil filter or cartridge filter on top of engine like modern cars if internal
9. Quick oil drain like on light airplanes so no drain plug to strip or torque
10. Slide in radios and GPS like light airplanes so that upgrades can be made painlessly
11. Luggage and trunk latches that don't break
12. Traction control
13. ESA or at least easily manually adjustable suspension for preload and damping
14. Standard size tires used by at least three other nonBMW motorcycles

I could go on, but I will stop here.
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post #20 of 23 Old Jul 14th, 2017, 2:19 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

I agree completely with the list...
But man, aside from the stupid servo brakes, this bike is solid.
I've put out there that I'd sell it... but who am I kidding? I'm making no real effort to let it go.
Such a shapely lady...
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BMW R1200GS 2008
BMW K1200S 2007
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BMW R1200R 2009 (in my stable, thinking about it...)


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post #21 of 23 Old Jul 14th, 2017, 4:33 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Many of the guys in the "R" group have removed the ABS when it fails. All that I have read have no complaints/regrets. Some say they like the "feel" even better.

Repair of them is costly , and down time waiting on parts....servo.
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post #22 of 23 Old Jul 14th, 2017, 5:22 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

Voyager - my GTL has never had any of those failures you listed. And it has most of your 14 points already covered as well...

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post #23 of 23 Old Jul 14th, 2017, 6:27 pm
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Re: Worth keeping '06 LT? What will start to go?

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Originally Posted by meese View Post
Voyager - my GTL has never had any of those failures you listed. And it has most of your 14 points already covered as well...
I agree that the GTL addressed many of the LT's shortcomings. Unfortunately, it introduced many of its own, particularly with respect to the passenger.

The new Yamaha Venture looks quite nice right up to the air cooled engine. Can't believe they did that. Otherwise, it looks like a potential successor to the LT. And with almost certainly greater reliability, lower cost and much better dealer network than BMW.

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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