Any prior Honda Valkyrie owners ? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 8:08 pm Thread Starter
 
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Any prior Honda Valkyrie owners ?

I presently ride a 99 Honda Valkyrie and am 6'3" with 34" inseam. Will the K1200LT "fit" me? Will I be cramped for leg and knee room? How does the LT compare in power...as in I can run the Valk in 5th gear down to 30mph going through a small town and just power back up without ever shifting down? Can I do my own maintenance and still have the factory warranty? Sorry, didn't see any references to this anywhere.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 8:19 pm
 
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i had a '98 tourer for several years and now own a 2003 LT, so i reckon i'm qualified to comment.

fit ... i'm 6' 1", and the LT fits me fine. there are two settings for the seat and you will want the higher of the two. there also some highway pegs available for the LT, if you wanna stretch out more. i thought i would miss the kury highway pegs of my valk but i don't. i find the LT's ergos to be excellent. except for the seat. you will want to change the seat; but then again the stock valk seat is nuthin to write home about ...

power ... no comparo. as we both know the valkyrie is one of the sweetest engines ever built, and it will smoke the LT like a cheap cigar, especially in terms of smoooooth torque. of course i also test-rode a triumph rocket III recently, and it will leave the valk in the dust. i guess there is always something faster.

maintenance ... you can do your own and it won't affect the warranty, so long as you keep your receipts for oil and consumables so you have some evidence that you actually did the work.

let me also add that the handling and brakes of the LT will astound you. it makes the valkyrie feel like a 20-year-old buick station wagon versus a porsche. just not in terms of power.

one final note: the LT is superior in terms of passenger comfort. my wife is so cozy on the back that she routinely takes a nap while tooling down the freeway.

feel free to PM me if you have more questions. it's great to see a valk brother come to the LT boards. i sure do miss my jade/black tourer.

;-)
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 8:59 pm
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Leg Room....

Quote:
Originally Posted by fsixrider
I presently ride a 99 Honda Valkyrie and am 6'3" with 34" inseam. Will the K1200LT "fit" me? Will I be cramped for leg and knee room? How does the LT compare in power...as in I can run the Valk in 5th gear down to 30mph going through a small town and just power back up without ever shifting down? Can I do my own maintenance and still have the factory warranty? Sorry, didn't see any references to this anywhere.
Howdy,

Although I've never ridden a Valkyrie, I am familiar with the "legendary torque" and have sat on them.

I run 6'4" with a 34" inseam.

The LT is as different from the Valkyrie as night is from day, and that applies to every aspect of the motorcycle.

The leg room takes some getting used to on the LT. I found that once I upgraded to a custom seat (a Russell) the seating position and leg comfort were very good. By very good, I mean a 1000 miles in a day is easy on the seat and legs.

The LT is NOT a broadband torque machine. It has good torque higher up in range and has very good gearing. Pulling away from a light is going to be agonizing slow compared to the Valkyrie. However, once you get up into the powerband on the LT, say 5K+ you'll feel good about the "pull".

Low speed handling is no comparison. The Valkyrie should turn SLOW speed circles around the LT. At high speed in the twisties, pity the Valkyie rider

If you like having a strong "pull" on tap, you'll need to shift the LT a lot more than the Valkyrie. In the hills, 2nd and 3rd are good to run from say 20 mph up to 90 mph.

When you take a test ride on the LT make sure you run the rpm's up and ride the bike in the 5-7.5K range. Then you'll "hear the bike start to sing".


.

Bill "Omaha"

"Life may have begun at 44, but it didn't get thrilling until I shot past 100"

'04 K1200LT "Dieter" Titan Silver, FB 4/23/04
'06 K1200R "Wolfgang" White Aluminum Metallic, FB 6/7/05

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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 9:18 pm Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys for the replies.

You both have given me good information. I hope to get some test rides in Daytona on Thursday. That should end the questions, and I'll try to get in the power band of the bike.
Any other comments would be welcome. I'll check back here before Thursday.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 9:26 pm
 
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let us know what you decide, either way.

oh, and if you wanna know more about the LT you may wanna scan old posts. but you prolly already know that.

cheers!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 9:44 pm
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I am 6'4". I own an LT and have ridden the Valk. I found the ergo's much better on the Lt. The Valk will smoke the LT in a straight line race and has a much meatier powerband, but in the twisties the LT will blow the Valk away. Both are great bikes. If you could afford it, consider keeping the Valk and adding an LT. Ron
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 10:48 pm
 
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To the short people

I am 6' 8" no problems about being cramped 36" inseam.
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 6:46 am
 
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Ex Valk rider

I used to have a Valk and thought it was a great riding machine until the Gold Wing 1800 came out so I bought it and it was a great riding machine until the 2005 LT was made, so I bought it. It step has been a step for the better. The LT is absolutely the best in the twisties and does great on the HYW cruising at 90. The torque on the Honda's is missed but only at red lights. Getting the RPM's up on the LT is a lot more fun than the low end torque on the Honda's. The LT fits me great at 6-1, 34 inch inseam. Let me mention the finish on the LT compared to the 1800; there is no comparison. On the 1800 I had to constantly apply wax to bring out the color (black) on the LT I just wipe off the dust. And the brakes all I can say be careful the first time you pull the handle. The Valk is a great looking bike but rides like a tractor compared to the LT. Good luck in your decision.
Dewman
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 8:01 am
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I had a 98 Tourer and it was an awsome maintenance free machine.

Since you already have a Valk switching saddles at low speed will
be no problem. I always found the valk to be a little top heavy as well.

In the twisties you will feel like your on a sport bike in comaparison.

At cruising speeds 70+ I found the valk a little tingling in the grips
after a while.(+ no cruise control)

You had no choice but to look thru the windshield. The adjustable
windscreen on the LT is one of the top features of the bike IMHO.

You will get 15-20 more mpg which is an added bonus.

Hope that helps. Enjoy your test ride!

Feel free to pm or email me if I can offer any other info

Larry Rusnak
Wadsworth, Ohio
2002 K1200LTC Pacific Blue
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 8:22 am
 
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Back in '01, a buddy and I rode the Blue Ridge Parkway together...he on his Valk, and I on my V65 Magna. We traded bikes a few times. The Valkerie is a cool bike...but for me, it's kinda hard to even try to compare it to an LT. As far as you "fitting", no problem. I'm also 6'3" w/ a 34" inseam. But the seating position on an LT is VERY different than your bike. But with the addition of highway pegs (I have "J-Pegs"), the seating position is VERY similar to what you're used to, if you have highway pegs on the Valk.

As for the low-end grunt...the Valk wins. I guess this is where things become subjective though. I never understood the whole "do you have to shift?" debate. Of course you have to shift! It's a bike! Now I'm not saying that you can't roll through town in 4th or 5th gear, because you can. But . . . once you get addicted to the LT's powerband (5K to 8K RPMs), you'll find yourself wanting to downshift more than you ever thought you would. And, IMHO, the LT can out-perform a Valk in the twisties as well. Don't ask me how I know.

Oh...and yes, you can do your own maintenance. Saves you a boatload of money. And, it does NOT void your warranty. I only use my dealer to change the brake fluid and plug it into the computer.
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 9:33 am
 
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the unique thing about the valk, and the thing that makes it so indearing to those who ride it, is it has both low-end grunt AND top end power. rest assured it will leave the LT for dead at both ends of the powerband.

you pay the price, though, at the gas pump. those six carbs feed a thirsty engine.
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 2:42 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by messenger13
I only use my dealer to change the brake fluid and plug it into the computer.
But then how do they stay in business?

Ken
Pacific NorthWet
'13 Dark Graphite Metallic K16GTLD, 24K miles
'09 Magnesium Beige Metallic K13GT, 63K miles
'03 Anthracite Metallic K12LTC, 66K miles
'02 Mauve Metallic K12LTC, 106K miles and sold
BMWLT#143, IBA# 366, MOA# 111996, SCMA# 24032


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Some people see the gas tank as half empty. Some see it as half full. All I care is that I know where the next tankful is coming from...
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 3:26 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meese
But then how do they stay in business?
I buy my oil, oil changing kit, spark plugs, air filters, and some appearal from them. I also actually buy brand new bikes from them. And, I'll be buying my new LT from them in early '08.
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 3:36 pm
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Yeah, pretty much the same for me, actually. Can't wait until '08, or possible even early '07.

Ken
Pacific NorthWet
'13 Dark Graphite Metallic K16GTLD, 24K miles
'09 Magnesium Beige Metallic K13GT, 63K miles
'03 Anthracite Metallic K12LTC, 66K miles
'02 Mauve Metallic K12LTC, 106K miles and sold
BMWLT#143, IBA# 366, MOA# 111996, SCMA# 24032


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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 3:36 pm
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I had a Valk for about two years and sold it to a friend when I bought my LT. I really never thought that the valk handled badly until we swapped bikes after about two months. Man I felt like I was going to kill myself on the same Valk I'd ridden for two years because of the way the front end dove down when I braked and the bike seemed to just wallow though the curves.

Of course I've also had that same experience when switchin with my step brothers HD Full Dresser and my uncle's Honda Shadow and my friends Kawi 1500 classic.

The Valk's a fine bike like all the others but it ain't no LT.

But I have to admit I loved the powerful look of that mostly chrome six-cyclinder. And while the beemer is smooth....nothing is as smooth as that Valk's six. The Valk web site used to have a video of the "nickel trick" .... that's where you'd balance a nickel on its end (standing up!!) on the head and then start the motor and the damn thing was so smooth that the nickel didn't fall!!!!

But boy did those carbs SUCK gas!!!!

Curtis
2006 K1200GT
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 4:12 pm
 
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I had a 2001 Valk Interstate and a 2002 Goldwing GL1800, both great bikes, gobs of power, most of the other posts cover the experiences nicely, I actually road tested an LT while still owning the Valk. To state it simply, the Valk is a truck, the LT a sports car. Both fit tall and big people. The Valk needed an aftermarket seat, the LT stock seat is fine. I'm 6' 2" well north of 220lbs. The LT allows you to take suspension hits on the pegs versus your butt on the Valk.

I could never go back to a Valk, or a Yamaha RoadStar. They are good products but real dump trucks compared to the LT or the Goldwing GL1800. If your are addicted to high torque and gobs of power, go check out a GL1800. It handles well and is used as a tow truck in Sweden, don't believe me, go Google it.

I'm not sure I'd agree with the rest of the members on slow speed handling. The Valks and Goldwings have huge flat sixes and have a lot of bowling pin effect low centre of gravity, outrageous stability. It does make it easier to drive them for a newbie at slow speeds. The trade off is they are not as nimble as the LT, which I love as well and much prefer. Perhaps shorter riders don't have the upper body weight to wrestle an LT if you goof up on the balance. Low speed riding is a necessary skill, and one that needs tuning moreso as one shifts from bike to bike. You will find the LT will change lanes with a mere thought versus deliberate counter steering of GWs and Valks. The LT compares more with the Honda ST1300 but with more upright seating if that coment helps.
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 6:40 pm Thread Starter
 
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Yes, all those comments are welcome

I like to be objective and see both sides of the story, but I think I said it before, Honda won't make a new Valkyrie. So there are lots of folks looking at other alternatives. I also have a 97 Valkyrie Tourer that is my little hot-rod of sorts with loud pipes and velocity stacks for when I want to go to the local bike night. When I do long trips I like quiet better. Tomorrow I will know more, I am test riding hopefully a 2002 K1200LTC and maybe a 2005 also. I hear the 2005 has 16 more horsepower!!! And what's this about a brown wire????
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 8:44 pm
 
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by fsixrider
... And what's this about a brown wire????
First, get the bike. THEN, we'll tell you what you need to do with it!

(Different tweaks for different years. The 'brown wire' is an alternate fuel map for hotter climates. More on that later...)
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Old Jan 4th, 2006, 11:08 pm
 
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I know my 2005 LT picks up ponies in the upper middle of its rev range but I am constantly amazed at how well it runs above 2K. If I am not trying to impress anyone (even myself) I usually shift in to fifth and leave it there--I often downshift riding through the small towns around here because I am supposed to. Often two up going over the neaby hills--I still try to upshift when I am in fifth because it feels as if I am pulling stronger than fifth gear should. I owned a 2001 GL1800 and an Indian Chief Vintage before the '05LT and the BMW does not embarass itself on power--of course when this bike hits 80 in fifth its "bye bye buddie" to the V Twin and 1800 crowd.
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Old Jan 6th, 2006, 6:17 pm Thread Starter
 
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To all who responded RE: Valkyrie vs. LT

Thank you all for your comments. You were all helpful and honest with information. I went to Tampa yesterday and test rode a 2002 LT. It is a nice ride, but just not for me at this time. I made a mistake that a power junkie like myself should not have made. I test rode a Triumph Rocket III !!
Since I could only buy one bike, I chose the Rocket. Let's just say that I think it will eat any Valkyries lunch. I found a used 2005 that some rich guy's wife had bought him and he already had 10 motorcycles. He put 200 miles on it in a year. Thanks again guys.
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Old Jan 6th, 2006, 6:45 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fsixrider
Thank you all for your comments. You were all helpful and honest with information. I went to Tampa yesterday and test rode a 2002 LT. It is a nice ride, but just not for me at this time. I made a mistake that a power junkie like myself should not have made. I test rode a Triumph Rocket III !!
Since I could only buy one bike, I chose the Rocket. Let's just say that I think it will eat any Valkyries lunch. I found a used 2005 that some rich guy's wife had bought him and he already had 10 motorcycles. He put 200 miles on it in a year. Thanks again guys.
i test rode one of those suckers, and i don't blame you one bit. that thing will rip your arms right out of their sockets.

enjoy!
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Old Jan 6th, 2006, 7:02 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fsixrider
Thank you all for your comments. You were all helpful and honest with information. I went to Tampa yesterday and test rode a 2002 LT. It is a nice ride, but just not for me at this time. I made a mistake that a power junkie like myself should not have made. I test rode a Triumph Rocket III !!
Since I could only buy one bike, I chose the Rocket. Let's just say that I think it will eat any Valkyries lunch. I found a used 2005 that some rich guy's wife had bought him and he already had 10 motorcycles. He put 200 miles on it in a year. Thanks again guys.
by the way ... how much did you pay for the rocket? if you don't mind saying ...
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Old Jan 6th, 2006, 7:11 pm Thread Starter
 
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They have several more that they want to get rid of

and all the 2005's are discounted. The sticker price on the floor is 15999. Before taxes,etc. this one was 12,100. BMW of Tampa. I think all the dealers have demo's etc. to move as the 2006's are coming in.
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Old Jan 6th, 2006, 8:27 pm
 
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Have fun on the Rocket. Fairly quick, with LOTS of torque. Just too much of a straight-line bike for me. But, there are worse choices out there as far as that goes. Sounds like you're definitely happier on a muscle-cruiser though...so you made the right choice.

For now...
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Old Jan 7th, 2006, 8:00 pm Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I'm keeping my 99 Valkyrie Interstate for two up

riding on the occasions that my wife decides to be a passenger. That is not very often, but when I need it, it will be available.
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Old Jan 7th, 2006, 8:15 pm
 
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I think every rider should have a minimum of two bikes...so I'm glad to hear that you can afford to keep the Valk. However, I'm of the opinion that your two bikes are too similar. (As if my opinion matters.) Perhaps the Valk serves better as your two-up bike, but they're still both muscle-cruisers. Kinda like a car enthusiast owning a Camaro and a Firebird. That's why I own the LT and a ZX-11 Ninja. VERY different bikes, yet I absolutely love them both for what they do. If I was to own a third bike, it would probably be a cruiser. A V-Rod or a Victory 8-Ball. Eventually, if you could afford to sell the Valk and buy a new (or used) LT, that would really be sweet. Certainly the LT would out-perform the Valk in just about every category as your two-up tourer.

For the record, I've owned 7 Hondas. I don't want to come across as a Honda basher. I really like their bikes . . . accept for the Shadows. Yuk! The 750 ACE is the only one they got right. All the other Shadows are just . . . um . . . blah, and boring.
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Old Jan 7th, 2006, 9:47 pm
 
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Yep!! I'd love to have two bikes,,,, I just wouldn't know what to do with two LT's..!! ..............Regards Pete
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Old Jan 7th, 2006, 10:00 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petepeterson
Yep!! I'd love to have two bikes,,,, I just wouldn't know what to do with two LT's..!!
Put a Corbin Smuggler on one, and leave the other one for your two-up rides. Or if you don't like the Corbin Smuggler...move the tour trunk forward to use as your back rest, as some have done. Lots and lots of ways to get creative with the little beast.
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