Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 6:47 am Thread Starter
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Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

Just bought a new bike and it’s my first one with integrated brakes. Must say, not a huge fan.

I haven’t ridden it much as it had a slipping clutch which is getting repaired.

My question to those more knowledgeable about these brakes than me - is it possible to use the rear brake without activating the front brake?

It’s disconcerting to use the rear brake at slow speed and have the front brake kick in.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Cheers. Colin
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post #2 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 7:10 am
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

Colin, as far as I know, they are linked for life. They do take some getting used to but most who have them end up really liking them.

Gordon
Sugar Hill, GA
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post #3 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 7:25 am
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

I have done 140000 on mine and never noticed the front brake operating if I use the rear brake, but you can grab a hand full of front and stop very quickly in an emergency situation, i only use the rear brake to wash away speed into a corner and slow speed on gravel you will quickly get used to it.

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post #4 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 7:28 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Sweeny View Post
Just bought a new bike and it’s my first one with integrated brakes. Must say, not a huge fan.

I haven’t ridden it much as it had a slipping clutch which is getting repaired.

My question to those more knowledgeable about these brakes than me - is it possible to use the rear brake without activating the front brake?

It’s disconcerting to use the rear brake at slow speed and have the front brake kick in.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Cheers. Colin
I too am not a big fan, but worse for me are the servo assisted brakes at speeds below 5mph (so everytime I get on and off the bike). OMG I hate those damn servos. I've been thinking of a crazy solution; bypassing the (working) ABS to get back to brakes that you can easily modulate. I've read enough to know the loss of ABS on the bike doesn't reduce the efficacy of the brakes, save for the (arguably significant) loss of ABS.

In truth I'll just rant and live with it until the inevitable failure of the ABS module. Hopefully that will not happen while I'm underway. Because then you are Fred Flintstone braking.
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post #5 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 8:14 am Thread Starter
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Thanks for the prompt response guys. It was what I was afraid of.

I have previously had the 99 and 00 K12s and was happy with their brakes.

These linked brakes are a handful at slow speed manouvering - especially when you’re 5’4”. At that height you don’t want the bike doing something you’re not ready for.

Looks like a lot of practice coming up when it gets back from the shop.

Thanks again guys. Much appreciated.
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post #6 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 8:45 am
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

Actually the answer is yes and no. It is possible to drag some rear brake without activating the fronts as I have tested this on the lift. BUT it is a very fine line and if you do over shoot you will get some front brake.

John
2009 K1300GT Red Rocket
2009 R1200GS (Gone)
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2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable
K4AN

Have ridden a Motorcycle in all 48
But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

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post #7 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 10:41 am
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Sweeny View Post
Thanks for the prompt response guys. It was what I was afraid of.

I have previously had the 99 and 00 K12s and was happy with their brakes.

These linked brakes are a handful at slow speed manouvering - especially when you’re 5’4”. At that height you don’t want the bike doing something you’re not ready for.

Looks like a lot of practice coming up when it gets back from the shop.

Thanks again guys. Much appreciated.
It is mostly a matter of muscle memory development. I actually quite like the servo brakes having gotten used to them. The key is to use just one finger at slow speeds and apply them gently. It really isn’t much different than when we moved from manual brakes in cars to power brakes. That was a difficult transition and many of us thought the power brakes were far too touchy. However, nobody even things about that anymore as every car has power brakes and nobody remembers how much effort braking once took.

It can be a little tricky hoping off my KLR and onto my LT as the KLR brakes require a fair bit more effort, but it isn’t bad once you get the hang of it.

And if you use the rear brake lightly, you will get little to no front brake activation.

2017 KLR650 "Mule"
2007 K1200LT "Starship Enterprise", VOICE II, Navigator V, Motorrad Communicator
1987 Kawasaki Voyager XII
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post #8 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 6:29 pm Thread Starter
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Thanks again for the feedback.

I am a ride instructor and part of our training is to use fast idle, friction point and rear brake for slow speed manouvering.

When the bike returns I’ll give the light touch on the rear brake a go and see if I can crack the no front brake.

On another off tangent question, how can you get your location on your profile? I haven’t been able to find that section yet.

Cheers. Colin
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post #9 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 6:35 pm
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In truth I'll just rant and live with it until the inevitable failure of the ABS module. Hopefully that will not happen while I'm underway. Because then you are Fred Flintstone braking.
I rode my 02 LT with no ABS for a year. It's heaven.
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post #10 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 6:41 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Sweeny View Post
Thanks for the prompt response guys. It was what I was afraid of.

I have previously had the 99 and 00 K12s and was happy with their brakes.

These linked brakes are a handful at slow speed manouvering - especially when you’re 5’4”. At that height you don’t want the bike doing something you’re not ready for.

Looks like a lot of practice coming up when it gets back from the shop.

Thanks again guys. Much appreciated.
I know that most instructors frown upon 'two finger' braking, but for low speed maneuvering I just use my rear brake and feather the front with two fingers. I am a significantly bigger framed person, so it may be a little easier for me, but anything is worth a shot I suppose.

Just ride til you get your feel. It took me a bit to get acclimated to the LT in transition from a sport bike.
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post #11 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 7:07 pm
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

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Originally Posted by Colin Sweeny View Post
Thanks again for the feedback.
...
....

On another off tangent question, how can you get your location on your profile? I haven’t been able to find that section yet.

Cheers. Colin
Colin,
See 2 attached print screen images how to get to edit LOCATION that will be shown in your Profile.
1) From top-right menu Select "USER CP",

2) On next screen, from LEFT bar menu , select "Edit your Details"

3) Once the detail screen is fully displayed, scroll down to bottom, The LOCATION is 3rd from bottom, You can fill Spaces, Comma or dash in between any words you put there like: Denver , CO , USA
or whatever format you want.

MAKE SURE to press SAVE CHANGES button when done.
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-------------------------------------------------
John (Montreal, CANADA)
K1200RS (2002 IceBlue/Red - 95,000 miles)
-------------------------------------------------
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post #12 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 7:28 pm
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

FWIW I also had mixed feelings on my RT w/iABS. Every time I went to one of those ghymkana things I'd drop it on the circle of death! Every time, sometimes more than once..BUT, it was beat up like an old farm truck and I didn't give a rip. I'd stand on it and pound my chest with a tarzan call while EVERYONE at the event was watching.

I started out with almost nothing and still have most of it left! 2004 K1200GT
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post #13 of 17 Old Aug 5th, 2019, 10:54 pm Thread Starter
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Thanks Sailor. Was trying to do it on my phone. Bad idea.

All sorted.
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post #14 of 17 Old Aug 6th, 2019, 7:40 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Sweeny View Post
Thanks for the prompt response guys. It was what I was afraid of.

I have previously had the 99 and 00 K12s and was happy with their brakes.

These linked brakes are a handful at slow speed manouvering - especially when you’re 5’4”. At that height you don’t want the bike doing something you’re not ready for.

Looks like a lot of practice coming up when it gets back from the shop.

Thanks again guys. Much appreciated.
I know that most instructors frown upon 'two finger' braking, but for low speed maneuvering I just use my rear brake and feather the front with two fingers. I am a significantly bigger framed person, so it may be a little easier for me, but anything is worth a shot I suppose.

Just ride til you get your feel. It took me a bit to get acclimated to the LT in transition from a sport bike.
Well I feel stupid. All yesterday I tried using one finger for the front brakes at low speed and found that to help immensely. Seems so obvious after you said it.
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post #15 of 17 Old Aug 6th, 2019, 12:20 pm
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Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

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Originally Posted by Hijak3k View Post
I know that most instructors frown upon 'two finger' braking, but for low speed maneuvering I just use my rear brake and feather the front with two fingers. I am a significantly bigger framed person, so it may be a little easier for me, but anything is worth a shot I suppose.

Just ride til you get your feel. It took me a bit to get acclimated to the LT in transition from a sport bike.
For a beginning rider on a small bike with no ABS, it makes sense to teach using all four fingers. And it makes it easier when doing the range exercises to tell if they have their hand on the brake when all four are in front of the lever.

However, as you advance and ride different bikes, you have to adjust technique to accommodate that. When I teach the BRC, we teach fundamental techniques that provide a solid foundation for future learning in as safe a manner as possible. However, I also tell the students that out in the real world you will learn to adjust the basic technique to the situation at hand. There are almost no absolutes in motorcycling.

I always laugh at folks who will argue that there is one best lane position or one best line through a corner, etc. That is complete BS. I ride in different lane positions depending on where I think the threats are most likely to come from. Same with corners. The best line for a blind corner is way different than the best line for speed on a track where you can see clear through the corner.

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 #16 of 17 Old Aug 8th, 2019, 6:26 pm
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Red face Re: Integral brakes on 2003 K1200LT

I have a 2004 LT purchased new. I was surprised when I rode it for the first time. I was not told about the linked brakes. After 200000 kM I have got used to it. Would not be without it now. Travelling at 120 kM/hr with pillion and luggage the power assisted brakes are very welcome to evade Kangaroos, sheep etc. I also have problems at slow speeds. I have thought long and hard of how to to isolate the pump motor at slow speeds. What strikes me is that someone with the knowledge of computers and electronics should be able to use the signal to the digital speedometer and when it reaches say 15 kM/hr the supply to the motor in the braking system is isolated. This would help me when parking at slow speeds when you have the bike nearly on full lock. I have been told that the on board computer has a lot of unused capacity to do many other tasks. Why the designers did not think of this when test riding before production I do not know. It only took me 5 minutes from the showroom to think of this.
Challenge for all you computer nuts get thinking.

Ian Lighttruck
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post #17 of 17 Old Aug 9th, 2019, 8:02 am Thread Starter
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Hi Ian. Glad to see I’m not the only one with issues with linked brakes at slow speed. Having the brakes isolated at slow speed would be the way to go, but can’t see it happening.

I see that you’re not too far from me. Glad the bike’s in the shop as the last couple of days are definitely not riding weather.

The cars are covered in snow tonight. The first time we have had such a dump since I’ve been in Royalla.
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