New reluctant owner- strangely happy... - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 10 Old Nov 17th, 2009, 6:11 pm Thread Starter
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New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Hi,

I'm a Brit living in Switzerland. I have to commute approx 100km/62miles per day so reluctantly traded my much loved R1150GS ADV for a K1200LT. I was reluctant because: -

a) I didn't think an LT would be fun.
b) I owned a K100RT for many years/miles and am well aware of their weaknesses.

So why did I buy the LT? I thought it'd be good on the motorway, and comfy over winter. The GS just hated + 120km/hr (75mph). Also, I thought every biker should have an oversize grand tourer at some stage of their biking lives. I thought my time to own one had come, and a Goldwing is just even further in the wrong direction.

First impressions. It was a lot easier to ride than I thought it would be. It was much easier to ride than my GS, being so much lower (I'm 5'6/170cm). It actually rode like a big scooter. The smell of plastic, the gear wine over the engine noise. All my fears were confirmed. It didn't help that I found a vanity mirror in the top box, and the bike I bought had been owned by a person who though 'accessorise' shouldn't be restricted to bags and shoes. At least he'd been reasonably discreet about it.

Is this biking? No.

Boring!

But then I found that when you rev it and throw it around there really is a motorcycle underneath. It's faster than the GS, but no where near as fast (obviously) as a Busa I once owned, or other sports bikes. It's actually really fun to ride.

I was really surprised by the engine. The K100 I had owned was vibe prone and just plain horrible. This is smooth, tractable, and, well, quite nice. Helped no doubt by the separate chassis with the engine no longer load bearing, and quite long gearing.

The chassis also. The K100 had as much rigidity as I would faced with Grandma in lingerie. You could feel the back wheel pointing a different direction to the front. The LT is something else. It's also surprisingly sensitive. At first I thought it wandered, but then realised that you don't need to man-handle, just little inputs. Thanks Bimota.

It has another quality that I didn't think it would have. I like looking at it. I sometimes go to the garage just to see it. I don't think I've felt that way about a bike for a very long time. I'm actually a little embarrassed to admit that.

The more I ride it the more I think what a stupid bike the GS was. I'd still like a sports bike for hooning around on, but the LT must surely remain in my possesion.

I must add, it's so comfortable. I think it's more comfortable than my car! And surprisingly good on fuel.

Anyway, thought I'd post to say thanks, as I now know how to fit my Zumo and chuck the CD changer that's taking up so much space (I'm more MP3 these days, and actually don't listen to music while riding), so your posts have been appreciated.

One thing I've not found yet, heated feet. They're the only part of me getting cold. I had an unreliable pair on my K100 that were wonderful when they worked, but if anyone know's a reliable pair I'd be grateful.
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post #2 of 10 Old Nov 17th, 2009, 6:19 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Some time ago I think there were " heat deflectors" that someone had cobbled together to keep those toes happy. I'll bet someone knows where the post is...


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post #3 of 10 Old Nov 17th, 2009, 6:32 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurtverbose
One thing I've not found yet, heated feet. They're the only part of me getting cold. I had an unreliable pair on my K100 that were wonderful when they worked, but if anyone know's a reliable pair I'd be grateful.
You've said a lot of things I also feel about riding the LT. You put it very well. Here's what I use for the feet.

Have fun,
Jer

Jerry Palma
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post #4 of 10 Old Nov 17th, 2009, 10:23 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Gerbings heated in-soles normally plug into the pants, but they do make a cord that will Y with gloves and go into the single controller, if you do not have the headed liner for your jacket.

http://www.gerbing.com/ is their web site. I seriously suggest their microwire product if you can afford it, but that said, since the microwire line is new, I expect to see a lot of the older line show up on ebay and craigslist, as well as fire sale prices at cycle shops.

On the LT, except for, as you say, the feet, the driver does not need them nearly as much as the passenger does in the more breezy rear seat.

Bil

wild bil
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post #5 of 10 Old Nov 18th, 2009, 11:08 am
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

"The K100 had as much rigidity as I would faced with Grandma in lingerie"

Now that is classic....too funny
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post #6 of 10 Old Nov 18th, 2009, 3:43 pm Thread Starter
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Thanks guys, I'll order the gerbings stuff.

Will post back what it's like.
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post #7 of 10 Old Nov 18th, 2009, 5:17 pm
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Thumbs up Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

[Well said and I agree with most everything you've said.
I continue to love the LT and cn't think of much else I would want at this point.
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post #8 of 10 Old Nov 18th, 2009, 9:14 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Replaced my eight-year old Gerbing jacket with the new microwire jacket.
Noticeable increase in heat density and distribution.
No gaps in coverage.

Note: If you're just using the jacket, a single controller will work.
If you're planning to use the jacket and gloves (or pants),
you'll need either a dual controller ($100) or a splitter ($10).
I already have a single controller, so the splitter will work for me.
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post #9 of 10 Old Nov 20th, 2009, 12:52 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Moving from a cruiser to the LT in July, it took me a while to get used to the look and feel of mine. I must say, the more I ride it, the more I like it. At this point, I would still like a cruiser for around town, but I don't see getting rid of the LT. I was nervous riding it at first, but have come to the point now where I really look forward to taking it out. It seems that it has gotten smaller as I ride it more. When I first bought it, it seemed huge! I must say, I felt very intimidated in the beginning, but now the bike feels more like a part of me when I ride as opposed to some great beast I was trying control. Hard to explain, but that's about as close as I can get.

Anyway, welcome to the LT club! Enjoy!

Mark

2000 Canyon Red LTC purchased 7/09
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post #10 of 10 Old Nov 20th, 2009, 7:19 pm
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Re: New reluctant owner- strangely happy...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurtverbose
... It has another quality that I didn't think it would have. I like looking at it. I sometimes go to the garage just to see it. I don't think I've felt that way about a bike for a very long time. I'm actually a little embarrassed to admit that...
Enough said, right there. You're definitely hooked!

Howard Schisler
2015 BMW K1600GTL
2009 BMW K1200LT - 60k miles
2012 BMW F650GS (sold)
2005 BMW K1200LT - "Gray Ghost", traded at 120k miles
2005 Honda Shadow 650 (sold)
AMA, IBA, BMW MOA. CCRs: Braselton 2006, Osage Beach 2007, Duluth 2012


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