Join Date: May 2005
Location: Littleton, CO, USA
Re: Deciding between R1150RT and K1200LT
The fact of the matter is, 97% of all LT owners do not have problems with their final drives. Everyone talks about the 3 - 4 percent. No one talks about the 97%.. The majority of the problems are prior to '03 ...
Getting back to your question, the best RT out there is the '05 - '08.. It is the smoothest, most powerful, and best performing.. If you are seriously considering an RT, why go with an 1150. Why not consider an '05 1200? It has the best of all worlds. Plus, it is only 1 model year past the 1150.
The slave cylinder failure has much to do with seals, as does the rear main seal failure. When the oil leaks into the clutch area from either of these locations, it causes contamination. You can check the bike out and/or have a mechanic inspect it prior to agreeing to purchase it first.
As I have mentioned in previous posts, these bikes do not like to sit. It is bad for the seals. So, if you are considering an older LT with very low mileage, I wouldn't. You may be asking for trouble. If you are considering a bike that has been ridden since it's purchase with good service records, etc. (an extended warranty is better yet), that would be a better option.
There are many threads on the forum about how to check a bike for potential final drive failures, inspection for leakage, clutch wear, contamination, etc...
Use this information and common sense, and I bet you will make a good decision. If the bike has manufacturer's warranty left, better yet. Then you can buy an extended warranty and safeguard yourself for a number of years in the future.
If you feel iffy about a bike, just pass... There are plenty of them out there.