I'm partial to the early KLTs, mine is a 2000 with about 75K miles on it. No significant problems.
If you've been reading here you'll know about clutch slave leaks, carbon cannister plug-ups, final drive failures.
Has the cannister been removed from the bike? If not be careful not to over fill the gas tank. A canister-ectomy has been done by many of us; it may well have already been done to yours.
As far as clutch slave leaks, look for any signs of oil drips under the bike. You also might try rolling the throttle on kinda hard in 5th gear to make sure the clutch isn't slipping. That's how folks have reported first discovering the slipping clutch.
As far as detecting wobble at the rear wheel, that continues to be bantered about as an indictor for final drive status. It is not; we have never heard of a rear wheel that wobbled secondary to final drive problems that wasn't already leaking oil from the final drive. Checking the wheels for any play is a good idea, and play at the rear wheel will detect loose pivot bearings. The best you can do to check the final drive is look at the drain plug magnet for any shiney metal particles. Some amount of very fine grey metal mud on the magnet is okay, larger shiney particles are not. Also, you can check for roughness during wheel rotation with the bike on the centerstand and the brake pads pushed away from the rotor. Any roughness is a bad sign. Shiney metal on the drain and wheel rotation roughness are indications that the final drive is failing. The only other way, and best way, is to open and inspect the drive. Most of 'em are just fine.
Service history is a good indicator of things. Short of doing a BMW "Inspection" as defined in the service manual, which will get you to the air filter among other things, the best you can do is just check for obvious things and handling on the road.
The K-bike motors are pretty bullet proof so unless there are signs of excess oil consumption or bad gas mileage doing compression and leakdown tests probably isn't necessary. Rear main seals, clutch slaves, and final drives seem to be the most common Achilles' Heels; that and cannister induced gas tank collapse.
Good bikes, have fun.
Originally Posted by pauleknight
I spent some time searching and could not find anyting that gives an overview on what to look for on a used LT.
I am taking a trial this weekend of a 2000 K1200LT with 50K miles on it.
The previous owner has had the bike for a year and said he changed the fluids at 49K miles.
Is there a recommended list of things to check out on the bike outside of a good shake down cruise?
I heard that some of the r1200 bikes have a tank liner that peals and destroys the fuel pump. From what I can tell the K1200LT has a plastic tank.
We are going to check the oil for shavings, look a the final drive fluid, check the air filter.
What else should I look over?
Thanks in advance, everyone has been so nice so far.