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post #1 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 3:46 pm Thread Starter
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Introducing myself

I recently bought a 1999 K1200LT that I plan on using on a cross country motorcycle trip in May, 2011. I have also just joined this forum. I would like to introduce myself and ask a bunch of questions.

First, a little info about me and the motorcycle. I have been riding motorcycles for about 45 years. For the past 19 years, I have been riding a 1992 Harley FXR that I bought new and still own. It now has 93,000 miles on it. I had planned on taking the Harley on the country trip until I recently saw an ad by Ace Motorsports in Concord, CA for a meticulously cared for 99 LT with 36,000 miles for $6,750. The service records I received indicate that last servicing was a 12K servicing, plus new tires, etc. The bike as it was sold to me was actually ready for the cross country trip. I could leave tomorrow.

I have had a lot of difficulty getting use to riding and handling the bike, particularly at low speeds. For awhile I thought it was me and my not being as good a rider as I thought I was. Now that Iíve read a bunch of the comments here, I realize it is the bike and not me. It is a top heavy (very heavy) bike that shines best on the highway. At slow speeds and in city traffic it is a dog. Sharp, slow, hairpin turns that I easily do on the Harley are still impossible for me on the LT. Iíve almost tipped over the bike a couple of times when maneuvering it at gas stations and while parking it. It took all my strength and energy to hold it up. I plan on doing a lot of practicing in empty parking lots at slow speeds to get use to that.

I had thought I would get a cassette adapter and use that for my Ipod but after readings here I see a Dice unit is the way to go and would allow me to access the Ipod directly through the sound system on the bike. Any suggestions as to where to buy the unit and whatever connectors it would need? I tend to be a frugal guy. It will be installed by an independent BMW shop here in San Francisco that has been recommended to me, Bavarian Cycle Works.

The last time I did a full cross country trip was in 1968 on a 250CC Suzuki X6 Hustler.
The itinerary for my cross country trip my friend and I will take is as of now: Starting from San Francisco, through northern Arizona, New Mexico, the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina with the Outer Banks as the furthest east we will go. Returning through Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Nevada and back to California.

So perhaps thatís enough to introduce myself and start to get to know you and ask questions.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #2 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 5:01 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

I'm an old Harley rider too.I have a few suggestions.
1.Do not use the front brake below 5 mph with the front forks turned.You can't feel how over balanced you are like your old bike .Try and get used to straightening your forks as you stop.
2.Try dragging your rear brake on slow speed maneuvers.
3.Try preloading your shifter slightly and only pulling in the clutch 1/2 inch .
4.Appreciate the clean spot where you park.
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Jeff Bokusky

Shoreview ,Mn.

2001 K1200LT ---
1973 Harley FLH 96 c.i.
1948 Harley EL 88 c.i.
1985 kawasaki KX250
1993 honda XR 200--
1978 Triumph Bonneville
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post #3 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 5:04 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

We must be around the same age, one of my first bikes was an X6 Hustler,
which at the time was the fastest production motorcycle on the market,

I also rode Harley for 30+ years, got my first Beemer in 1988,
sold my last Harley about five years ago.

One of the things we hear a lot from newcomers is:
this bike doesn't handle like the bikes I'm used to riding,
it's not me so there must be something wrong with the bike,

Sorry but that's not correct, it is you, you're not used to it yet,
rather than find fault with the LT, ride it,
by the time you have worn out your first tire
chances are you will prefer the LT to any bike you've owned,

Sure she's a "big girl" but let me tell you this big girl can dance.
Now granted she is "too big" for some guys,
she's "top heavy" but then so is my wife (I'm a lucky guy!)

I've never dropped her in almost a hundred K
and I have no problems with U-turns, hairpin turns or low speed handling, it just takes a little "finesse"

If I can do it, so can you,
accept her for what she is and you'll learn to love her
No she's not a Harley, Harley is a tractor,
anybody can ride them.

Regarding your trip sounds like a great adventure, take pictures,
share them with us and if you're into it post a ride tale, here's one of mine,
in other words, take us with you.
May is a good time to travel, off season, milder temperatures
it's also the "windy" time in the western states.

But you left out Utah,
there are so many cool roads and National parks in that state
you "owe it to yourself" to check it out

Ride safe.


Hans
St. Petersburg FL

2002 K1200LTE
"Silver Buffalo" Totaled 5/06
2005 LT
"Esperanza"
BushtecGenesisTrailer
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post #4 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 5:05 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Michael;

Couple of things... Slow Speed. Yep... It can be a "beotch". Turn those handlebars a tiny bit and jump on the binders and she will go over. Best way to combat that is??? Practice, practice and more practice.

The other thought. You Harley had a lot of low end. These things don't get into full voice until you have a bunch of R's in her. Keep the RPM's up there and she'll thank-you for it. Around town and in traffic if I get outta third I'm lucky. 1st and 2nd are my usual as I make my way into work.

No matter how good a rider you are, the ERC is a good thing to take as a refresher. If you ride 2-up, take the course two up. It's a real eye opener.

Last thought? Talk to others in your area about their LT. Some of these old goats (and I are one of them...) have done a few miles on these things. They know stuff that only a devoted disciple can tell you about what makes 'em tick.

Then get out there are do some twisties at speed. After you get off the bike, try and wipe that smile off yer face...

Stay in touch! Ask questions! Don't be a stranger.. You're family now!

just sayin'...

Uncle Mark

BMW '06' 1200LT "Wild Blue"
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post #5 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 5:35 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverBuffalo
One of the things we hear a lot from newcomers is:
this bike doesn't handle like the bikes I'm used to riding,
it's not me so there must be something wrong with the bike,

Sorry but that's not correct, it is you, you're not used to it yet,
I should have stated that better. I was beginning to think I just didn't have the ability to ride this bike, that perhaps I didn't have any longer have what it would take. I'm 65, 5'10", 135 pounds, so I'm not a particularly big guy and the bike seemed so big and unwieldy to me. Now I've come to realize the bike does in fact ride differently than other bikes, and it is going to take a lot more riding and learning time than I had thought. The bike really does call for a different style of riding at slow speeds. I was beginning to doubt my ability to ever get this, now I've come to realize it really is my lack of experience.

So I'm taking in all the suggestions all of you have made so far. This weekend I'll spend some time in an empty parking lot near me slowly putting a lot of this in practice in a controlled situation. I've gone too wide on a couple of tight turns on mountain roads where there was no consequence to my having gone wide. I don't want to do that again.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #6 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 6:29 pm
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Thumbs up Re: Introducing myself

Michael,
I was riding a 2300cc Triumph Rocket when i got the LT. The LT made the Rocket feel small....just because of the "top heavy" feel. What I eventually reallized, I had the bad riding habit of "man-handling" my bikes. The LT takes "finesse" . First of all, when you come to a stop try to be "so" balanced that you can put just one foot down. Secondly, this baby can lean on twisties. Don't hesitate to lean it. No need to go wide on turns. Leaning it and hearing a scrape will only make you feel more confident.

BTW....5'-10" & 135 pounds? You got BALLS!!!!! hehe Welcome aboard!

Rocket Ron


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post #7 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 8:15 pm
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Wink Re: Introducing myself

Welcome aboard Michael! The others have already given you some excellent advice. Especially the part about watching that front wheel when stopping with the front binders! This gal loves to take naps! On the subject of your Ipod: start out with the cassette adapter simply because it is so inexpensive, and you can do it. The later model LT's don't have a cassette player, just a single CD, in the oddments box. I have used one on my '00 LT for ten years now, and it works just great! You will not be able to select tunes with the handlebar controls, but you can control the volume with them once you select "CC" on the radio controller. You could always go to the Dice unit later if you decide you need it, but they have had some probs with those units too.

Your planned trip will be something you'll remember for a long time because you're gonna love it!

John

John & Marilyn Fisher
'00 K1200LTC "Katie"
'95 Triumph "Tigger"
'12 Triumph 800XC "Tigger II" (RIP)
'12 Triumph 1200 Explorer "Shadow Tigger"
Hillsboro, Oregon

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post #8 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 8:37 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlaskaFish
On the subject of your Ipod: start out with the cassette adapter simply because it is so inexpensive, and you can do it.

you can control the volume with them once you select "CC" on the radio controller.
John
Thanks for that advice. I can make play lists of what I like and simply start it before I get going. I've been enjoying the sound system on the bike. This is the first bike I've had with a sound system. And cruise control (I always seem to wind up going faster than I want without cruise control in the car or on the bike). I love music (I have an Ipod with over 700 albums on it, my entire music collection). To be able to listen to music while I (relatively) slowly ride down the highway is something I am looking forward to.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #9 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 9:20 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

I wouldn't be too quick to doubt yourself. It is a very different bike and it takes a little time to get the feel of it.Once you do you will be amazed how nimble it actually is . Low speed is a bit unnerving at first but it does get better. If you read a few posts it won't take long to realize LT riders tend to forget how big their bikes are. They can and do stay with the pack without issue (it's not unusual for us to lead the pack). You will learn to love this amazing machine.
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post #10 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 9:38 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

These are things to check on your 99
the computer chip was replaced--stock one caused hot wx hesitation
the starter relay was replaced--stock one fuses shut at low voltage
a crash pan was added--it didn't come with one
the rubber brake lines have been replaced--the stock ones will start leaking
Carefully inspect the joint between the trany and engine to make sure there isn't any oil seepage--BMW made a new seal that doesn't leak like the stock ones

This summer I'll be heading out to Maine and back. My ride to here from MA was in 1989 on my 86 FXRS.

Best from Tucson
Bob

OH! I almost forgot. By design your stock speedometer is off by about 10mph. Multiply your indicated speed by 90% to come close to your actual speed. The odometer is accurate in spite of the speedo being off.

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post #11 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 9:43 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Does your bike have a CD changer in the rear saddle bag? If so you can remove the CD changer and the dice unit will plug right into it--no other modifications needed. I did it, and I don't know swat about electicity or wiring etc. All the connections should come with the unit.
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post #12 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 10:49 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcpsycle
IThis weekend I'll spend some time in an empty parking lot near me slowly putting a lot of this in practice in a controlled situation. I've gone too wide on a couple of tight turns on mountain roads where there was no consequence to my having gone wide. I don't want to do that again.
Your on the right track...practice until it is second nature and it will pay you back when you will need to perform. I also have a 99 and I predict after your first day in the saddle of your trip you are going to wonder why you didn't make the switch a long time ago.

Good to have you aboard and if you have some time to spare...check out the Hall of Wisdom under the Technical banner. Lot's of great reading there that will get your juices flowing

Wade
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99 K-1200LT
82 Yamaha Virago (Girl of my youth)

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post #13 of 52 Old Feb 4th, 2011, 11:38 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Your new bike is like a surgical instrument compared to the old tractor.....It takes time to adapt your mind and body to a totaly different way of riding.... and Then.......You achieve "Oneness" with "her" and after that....You will never wipe that smile off !!!

Ride safe, Z.
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post #14 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 12:10 am
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Re: Introducing myself

I bought my LT last October. It constantly puts a smile on my face when I ride it - should have bought it long ago.

I've got 100 lbs. on you and I have issues with slow riding - makes me a bit nervous, especially on a slight include and a bit uphill.. But, from the few miles I have ridden, this bike is more predictable, especially in curves. ABS really makes handling this bike feel a lot safer.

One thing I can recommend is looking at the videos (on this web site or Youtube?) about picking the bike up in case you drop it. Simply put, you put your back to the bike, grab the bike (see video), crouch down a bit and slowly walk backwards and up. A medium-sized lady demonstrated it.

Ride safe, have fun.
Mike

Mike

2005 K1200LT - Road Lear Jet - like flying on wheels
2003 XR650L - A little on road, a little off
1980 GS1000 - nostalgic street fighter
------------------------------------------------------
Previously owned: 1985 Wing, 79 GS1000, 72 CB45
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post #15 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 12:42 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by BecketMa
These are things to check on your 99
the computer chip was replaced--stock one caused hot wx hesitation
the starter relay was replaced--stock one fuses shut at low voltage
a crash pan was added--it didn't come with one
the rubber brake lines have been replaced--the stock ones will start leaking
Carefully inspect the joint between the trany and engine to make sure there isn't any oil seepage--BMW made a new seal that doesn't leak like the stock ones...

OH! I almost forgot. By design your stock speedometer is off by about 10mph. Multiply your indicated speed by 90% to come close to your actual speed. The odometer is accurate in spite of the speedo being off.
Many thanks again for all your insight and knowledge.

The bike appears to have been impeccably cared for. I went to San Francisco BMW and gave them the vin#. They were able to look up the bike and tell me about all the warranty work it had done, etc. They now have my name associated with the bike.

I brought the bike over to Bavarian Cycle Works in San Francisco to introduce myself and to check them out, and I spoke with Issa Eismont, one of the co owners. It turns out he was the service manager of Santa Cruz BMW until recently. The last owner of the bike had it serviced the last few years at Santa Cruz BMW and Issa remembered the bike specifically and was able to recall a bunch of little things the bike had done to it at the last servicing last year (a 12K service that ran about $2500 including new tires)! He told me the guy who owned the bike was meticulous about it's maintenance, all done by the dealer. So while I'll check out all the things you mention (I've been those points mentioned elsewhere on the forum), I'm going to guess since those appear to be well known issues, that I will be told most of those things have been done. If not, I'll get them done.

And I notice the speedo issue. It just didn't seem right. I know how fast the lanes of traffic tend to move in the Bay Area. The #2 lane on most freeways around here almost always runs at 66-67 mph. The speedo has consistently been above 70 when I rode the bike in that lane.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #16 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 12:58 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrlakin
Does your bike have a CD changer in the rear saddle bag? If so you can remove the CD changer and the dice unit will plug right into it--no other modifications needed. I did it, and I don't know swat about electicity or wiring etc. All the connections should come with the unit.
It does have a cd changer in the trunk. My riding buddy is good with tools. If I have the unit, he will probably do the connecting for me if I ask him.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #17 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 1:21 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Michael...Forget what the Harley was like, this is a completely different piece of equipment. Your FXR is probably more than 200lbs lighter than the LT, and the LT is a lot taller, but it will be able to really lean in a turn, where the Harley would be throwing sparks and scaring the crap out of you. Also if it wants to take a nap, just get out of the way, it is too heavy to muscle, then use the correct method to pick it up as someone else posted. It will do 60mph in 1st gear, 80 in 2nd. It loves the high revs. As far as the speedo correction, if you have the BC, (bike computer) when you get up to speed, select the average mph, and push the reset button, it suprizing enough will give you your accurate speed. I found this out, and checked out my actual speed at various speedo speeds, and now have an accurate idea of what speed I am actually at, given diffferent speedo readings. OR you can go to walmart or costco and buy an inexpensive garmin gps and suction cup it to the stingray, and it will give you accurate speed readings. Mine has the mount that suctions to a smooth surface. it has never fallen off! Enjoy the ride my friend

RICH CANNON
2000 K1200LT "a great ride"
2002 GL1800 powerful, but boring..(gone)
1979 XS1100 (gone)
1986 VT500 Ascot (gone)
1972 Honda 500-4 (gone)
1961 Lambretta (way gone)
1962 Allstate Compact (gone but not forgotten)
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post #18 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 6:33 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcpsycle
I recently bought a 1999 K1200LT that I plan on using on a cross country motorcycle trip in May, 2011. I have also just joined this forum. I would like to introduce myself and ask a bunch of questions.

[...]
So perhaps thatís enough to introduce myself and start to get to know you and ask questions.
Michael, welcome to the group! Hans said it well, give yourself time, even at slow speeds, the LTs can be quite manageable. Within my 1st year (and some good guidance and coaching), head up, eyes forward, almost a Zen-sort of thing and I could maneuver my 2001 at the slowest of speeds and some pretty tight areas.

After losing the '01 last Fall and picking up an '05, I've had to re-learn some muscle memory. The geometry is slightly different, grabby integrated brakes, but I'm getting back to where I was. An Advanced Rider Course is in my future.

Keep us posted on your travels. Be safe out there.

Tom Haycraft
Round Rock, TX

2001 K1200LT - Champagne (2004 - 2010 / R.I.P.)
2005 K1200LT - Ocean Blue (2010 - )
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post #19 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 9:12 am
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Re: Introducing myself

If the Speedometer error is something that you just can't live with there is a fix for early model year machines published in the HALL OF WISDOM. Admittedly, it's not for the faint of heart, however if implemented as described it will eliminate the problem. You can review the procedure here;
http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/faq.php?...l&titlesonly=0
Scroll down to the 1st article.

Also, I'd like to 2nd the suggestion to sign up for an MSF Experienced Rider Course. That class is perfect for an individual like yourself that has lots of experience but is working on learning the nuances of a new ride. It will give you an opportunity, in a controlled environment, to practice all those skills that will save you butt in the real world. Those include, cornering, swerving, braking, quick stops and most importantly slow speed handling including slow tight turns. Good luck with your new to you bike.

Lynn Keen
North East Florida
MSF #28271 Retired
'99 Canyon Red RETIRED AT 93,000 MI
'05 GRAPHITE METALLIC retired at 87,000 MI
'01 R1150 GS- totaled
'02 R1150 GS sold
'85 K100/EML sidecar sold
'11 R1200RT currently being enjoyed

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post #20 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 9:54 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn_Keen

Also, I'd like to 2nd the suggestion to sign up for an MSF Experienced Rider Course.
I took the ERC somewhere about 1993, about a year after I bought the Harley. I had been thinking about taking it again, even before I bought the LT. Now I'm sure I'll take it again, but I think I'll wait a few months and get use to the bike before taking the ERC on it.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #21 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 9:54 am
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Re: Introducing myself

We did the ERC in the pouring rain.My LT,my brothers RT ,and my other brothers FJR with abs outbraked everyone else easily and gave me a whole new appreciation for ABS.
I also didn't feel comfortable with the low speed until I practiced enough to relearn habits.30 years ago I remember the same feeling going from Triumph to HD.
I did the speedometer fix and it now reads within 1 mph of my GPS

Jeff Bokusky

Shoreview ,Mn.

2001 K1200LT ---
1973 Harley FLH 96 c.i.
1948 Harley EL 88 c.i.
1985 kawasaki KX250
1993 honda XR 200--
1978 Triumph Bonneville
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post #22 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 10:46 am
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Re: Introducing myself

It just takes time. I got an LT about a year ago after 12 years of riding HD's. Time and miles will get you confidence. Just be careful around the parking lots, and don't stall it when in a slow turn--it will go down (don't ask me how I know). Also if you use the side stand, put the bike in 1st gear and roll to compression.

Otherwise get ready for a great experience, I put more miles on my bike this year than I ever did with my HD, including the year I went to Alaska. Have fun!
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post #23 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 1:01 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by casualemt
Your FXR is probably more than 200lbs lighter than the LT

go to walmart or costco and buy an inexpensive garmin gps
It is actually a 253 pound difference. The Harley is listed at 578, the LT at 831 pounds.

And I just bought a Garmin Nuvi 550 with all the ram mount pieces to attach it to the clutch reservoir. This is an inexpensive waterproof model. Issa Eismont at Bavarian Cycle Works here in San Francisco said he would hard wire that into my electric system. So I'll be getting an accurate indication of speed from the gps.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #24 of 52 Old Feb 5th, 2011, 1:27 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Welcome aboard Michael. IMHO, you have a great year for the LT. I cannot really add to anything the others have said, except again WELCOME.

Bill
Eastern Virginia (Middle Peninsula)
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99 K1200LT, Basalt Gray "DELILAH" (SOLD)
99 R1100RT ,Glacier Green (SOLD
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post #25 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 1:06 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcpsycle
And I just bought a Garmin Nuvi 550 with all the ram mount pieces to attach it to the clutch reservoir. This is an inexpensive waterproof model. Issa Eismont at Bavarian Cycle Works here in San Francisco said he would hard wire that into my electric system. So I'll be getting an accurate indication of speed from the gps.
Hi Michael.
If you want to connect the Nuvi into a comms sytem (along with the Ipod) if you have or add one, there's a simple "hack" here that'll give you the audio out.. I did it a couple of weeks ago and it works fine.
Enjoy your new baby!

Chris
Sydney, NSW
2005 Dark Graphite Metallic K1200LT
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post #26 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 8:02 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Welcome Michael
Lots of good advise on this site as you see. Read and practice.

Just Go
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post #27 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 8:34 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Hey Michael,

I was stationed at Concord Naval Weapons Station in Concord, CA for a few years back in the late 70's and used to go to Ace Motorsports to buy gear and shoot the sh_t with the owner...small guy dark hair mustache....Use to love taking the bike down to the working wharfs - even numbers - and drive around there...Also there used to be a Kawasaki/BMW dealer/repair place in Walnut Creek - small place.
As the above posts have stated the guys in this forum know their stuff or are real good bullshixxers

Good luck on the trip

Bob
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post #28 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 10:08 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by cws
Hi Michael.
If you want to connect the Nuvi into a comms sytem (along with the Ipod) if you have or add one, there's a simple "hack" here that'll give you the audio out.. I did it a couple of weeks ago and it works fine.
Enjoy your new baby!
Thanks for the suggestion. I looked over the directions and photos. That is way beyond my ability and experience. I'll just have to have the place I will take the bike to for maintenance do whatever they can. But thanks again for the suggestion.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #29 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 2:10 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Welcome to the group. To improve your slow speed riding skills, follow the advice provided in earlier postings. For slow speed riding, you need to be very "purposeful" in your steering input, look where you want to go, keeping off the front brake and when necessary dragging the rear brake and keeping the revs up. There are many LT riders who are either inseam challenged or thin. I found the LT a dream to ride from the first time I took a test ride at the dealership (that was in Manhattan traffic). The only times I'm reminded that it can feel a bit like a beast is at the end of a high mileage day, riding two up and I'm encountering lots of slow, stop and go traffic, and that has more to do with a 29" inseam. The LT does not react well to inattentiveness or laziness when it comes to slow speed riding. Once you've had a chance to put some miles on your LT, you'll appreciate the qualities; I certainly do. Again, welcome to the group and enjoy planning for your cross country trip. I took the LT on a cross country trip two years ago and I'm planning to do it again, maybe this summer.
Scott

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post #30 of 52 Old Feb 6th, 2011, 7:46 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

It gets better. I rode the LT today from San Francisco, north on 101 to Cloverdale and then northwest on 128 to Booneville. 101 was of course easy. But I did a lot better on 128 than I have been able up to now. 128 is fairly twisty. What I did different was keeping it in a lower gear and keeping the revs high, real high as recommended here. The LT does need to be reved to properly take slow turns. That I have now learned. So there were a whole bunch of times I kept it in first or second. That made it a lot easier to negotiate the tight turns. On my Harley FXR I can let it almost lug and there is still enough low speed torque to get me through the turns ok. But the LT does need to be reved. That is my lesson of the day. Total mileage today about 240.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #31 of 52 Old Feb 7th, 2011, 6:23 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

If you weight 135 lbs I think this bike may be too much for a 65 year old!! All the comparisons this bike and how it rides may be legtimate but ask all the other guys how much they weigh!!! 135 lbs wow that is very light for a 880 lb bike!!!

I am 61 and weight 200 lbs this bike handles just fine . . . But it takes time to harness as others have stated and who I completely agree with.

Dan Finazzo
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post #32 of 52 Old Feb 7th, 2011, 7:05 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfinazzo
If you weight 135 lbs I think this bike may be too much for a 65 year old!! All the comparisons this bike and how it rides may be legtimate but ask all the other guys how much they weigh!!! 135 lbs wow that is very light for a 880 lb bike!!!

I am 61 and weight 200 lbs this bike handles just fine . . . But it takes time to harness as others have stated and who I completely agree with.
I exaggerated. I'm actually about 132. You may be right but I'm determined to make this work at least for the cross country trip and this riding season. I figure there will be a lot of good sport touring bikes on the market when the K1600 become available. Around here, there are a lot of sport touring guys who will have to have the latest thing. So maybe I'll trade it sell it next year and buy a really good though slightly used sport tourer. I'll see.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #33 of 52 Old Feb 7th, 2011, 10:51 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Hi, Michael, welcome!

I would not worry about the weight issue too much. I am 160lbs (well, a bit more after this holiday season... ) and often ride two up. Dropped the LT with wife on pillion only once - in the garage.

But, I dropped it a few times by myself. You will too. So what? - it was designed to fall. The protective strips on fairing and saddlebags will arrest the fall in most cases.

As others wrote, if the bike is falling just get out of the way to avoid getting hurt. Then, pick it up - no biggie. Have a look at the video of Carol Yuorsky picking up a heavy machine. If she can do it at 5'3", 118lbs, anyone can.

If you want some slo-mo training, check out the DVD published by Jerry "Motorman" Palladino, 'Ride Like A Pro' - it is devoted to slow-speed control of heavy bikes.

Finally, I concur with others on connecting your MP3 player via a cassette adapter. Remove the CD player and mounting frame to regain storage space in the sidecase. Just tape up the remaining connector there and leave it alone.

On my old 2000 LT, I used the cassette adapter and found it actually easier to use than the stuff I had to add to get the radio on the 2001 working.

Enjoy the ride!

Robert in Northern NJ

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post #34 of 52 Old Feb 7th, 2011, 11:49 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Hi Michael and Welcome.

I'm a fairly new LT owner too. Had her for about 18 months now, and only dropped twice . Anyway Last summer I took a ride from eastern PA, to New Mexico and back. I averaged about 500 miles a day give or take. For me personally at 42 years old I found that my knees started killing me. I vowed that before I do another long ride anywhere that I would have have to get some J-pegs or something to allow me to comfortably stretch my legs.

As far as my sound system, I got a plain Jane LT with no fancy intercom/sound wiring so I bought Nolan Blue tooth helmets that I connect right to my Blackberry which does MP3's as well and goes helmet to helmet (not so sure that was a good thing)

Good Luck with your new bike hope you like it as much as I do.

Tom

2003 Silver K1200LT


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post #35 of 52 Old Feb 8th, 2011, 7:09 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Welcome Michael,
I too have a 99 LT with 38k miles on it which I bought 2 1/2 years ago. I put 17k miles on it since I got it and have loved every single mile. You already got all the good advises from all the folks here so I do not have much to add. I have been riding motorcycle for many many years and the LT is the only one I have tipped over. Before I got the LT I thought I was an expert in riding motorcycles. Well, this big German lady taught me otherwise. It is the best motorcycle I have owned to date.

Alain

Vieux motard que jamais
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post #36 of 52 Old Feb 8th, 2011, 8:04 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Oh no Michael,
Don"t think about selling her yet. Give her a chance.
We got our 2000 LT about three years ago, and she just keeps getting better !
I'm 49...165... and 5'8". My last bike was an '81 GL1100 Goldwing, (what a difference).
My suggestion is to browse the Hall Of Wisdom often, learn to love "tupperware", and
go for some rides. The slow handling will come naturally (eventually).
It's important to plan where you are going to park.
Level or slightly uphill on the sidestand.....be a little careful of uphill on the centerstand,
it's not so easy to get off of the centerstand going uphill. Go around the block if you
have to....it's important to get a good parking spot....really.
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post #37 of 52 Old Feb 8th, 2011, 9:02 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by rhawk
Oh no Michael,
Don"t think about selling her yet. Give her a chance.
No, I'm not giving up on "it" ( decided to call it "The Beast", at least for now. I consider it to be genderless, neither male nor female). For one thing, I have the whole cross country trip still to do. And I plan on riding it this summer including a trip to Death Valley this fall. So it is likely to get between 10-15,000 miles on it before I decide anything.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #38 of 52 Old Feb 8th, 2011, 9:34 am
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcpsycle
No, I'm not giving up on "it" ( decided to call it "The Beast", at least for now. I consider it to be genderless, neither male nor female). For one thing, I have the whole cross country trip still to do. And I plan on riding it this summer including a trip to Death Valley this fall. So it is likely to get between 10-15,000 miles on it before I decide anything.
Good plan! You'll learn to handle her in parking lots and at intersections (forks straight when using front brake at low speed, or use very light touch) and you'll love her on the open road, especially in the twisties.

Benny C. (Central Texas)
2001 LTC Pacific Blue (Babe...the blue ox)
1986 Kawasaki Concours (Connie) sold
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post #39 of 52 Old Feb 8th, 2011, 10:12 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

It is the potential of easy open road riding that led me to the LT in the first place. I am a fairly good rider (after 45 years of riding). I can handle a bike in the twisties. The FXR which I have owned for the past 19 years is suppose to be the best handling big Harley ever made. The frame was designed by Erik Buell when he worked for Harley. So I should be able to learn to handle the LT.

But what I have always enjoyed much was just being "out there" on the road, with nothing separating me from the environment. I like seeing the pavement sic inches from my feet. I always ride with the face shield up (I do wear sun glasses and have a windshield on all my bikes). The idea of also having cruise control (to prevent me from going to fast due to "speed creep") is very appealing. Same for the music system and ABS (which I now consider a requirement). So I think I'll enjoy the LT but I know I would also enjoy most of the other sport touring bike make by BMW (and others).

And I don't change bikes too often. I get settled in with a bike and just keep it and ride it (see my list of bikes).

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #40 of 52 Old Feb 9th, 2011, 3:48 am
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Re: Introducing myself

[The itinerary for my cross country trip my friend and I will take is as of now: Starting from San Francisco, through northern Arizona, New Mexico, the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina with the Outer Banks as the furthest east we will go. Returning through Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Nevada and back to California.


I am envious. How long will the trip take and how many miles do you expect to cover.
Certainly one of my "things to do before I die".
Two years ago I did a similar trip on my LT here in Europe, Ireland, Wales, England, France, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium and Holland. All done in two weeks with the LT purring all the way two up from high speed autobahns (no speed limits) to severe twisties through the Alps and Pyrenees.
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post #41 of 52 Old Feb 9th, 2011, 8:29 am Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Quote:
Originally Posted by markmoloney
[How long will the trip take and how many miles do you expect to cover.
The route as listed is a little under 7,000 miles. I expect the entire trip will be about 7,500 miles. YMMV.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #42 of 52 Old Feb 9th, 2011, 9:38 pm
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I bought my LT in September 2010. It was a new 2009 and all I kept hearing was how top heavy it is. Of course this was coming from all of the Harley and GW riders. I had been riding a 2007 Honda VTX 1300R and I must admit that I was apprehensive about my new girl. I thought she my get me out in public and dump me. But in less than a week I had forgotten about how top heavy she's supposed to be. I'm 54, I rode a 1971 Kawasaki 250 in my teen years. Had a wreck on it when I was 18 and stopped riding until I was 51. When I decided to go for the touring bike, the GW was my first choice until I went to look a the Victory and went in the wrong door. I walked into the BMW side and there she was, just beautiful. I still couldn't bring myself to buy her because of the bad press I was getting. I went to the Honda dealer but they wanted "real" money for the GW and they had no specials going on. I went back to BMW and they gave me a great trade in, the bike had been discounted and BMW through in the communication system for free. Couldn't walk away now. Rode her home, scared to death, on a windy day. Then I just got on her everyday and rode. Started out at the high school parking lot to get used to the weight ratio, practice slow speed riding, u-turns and now I'm ready to fly. Just practice my friend. Learn her every move. Anticipate what she's going to do before she has time to do it. If you've been riding for 45 years, you will have no problem. Pretty soon it will all be second nature when you get on her.
Good luck and hope to see you out there.
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post #43 of 52 Old Feb 14th, 2011, 6:52 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Riding the LT is getting easier but I still have a long way to go.

On Sunday my riding buddies and I decided to get out and ride. Since weíve been having this unseasonably good weather in northern California, it was too good to ignore. So without a plan, except to put on a lot of miles, we got on our bikes and headed north from San Francisco. So it was north 101 through Marin and Sonoma. The first stop was in Cloverdale, about ninety miles north of San Francisco where we ate at the MacDonaldís and too a look at the map. We got back on the bikes and continued to head north on 101 till just north of Ukiah where we got off and rode east along Route 20, south on Route 29, around Clear Lake, a stop for gas in Lower Lake, then over the top of Mt. St. Helena, south through the Napa Valley along the Silverado trail and eventually into I 80 and back to San Francisco. All together we rode about 300 miles.

The LT is getting easier to handle. The only really challenging part was over the top of Mt. St. Helena where there are many, many, many 20 mph turns and one 15 mph turn. It seemed to go on forever. Iím getting better at handling The Beast (aka 1999 BMW K1200LT). But it is still a lot of work to ride this bike through constant twisties. And I mean constant. One right after the next one. I still a bit stiff in my body and not as relaxed as I expect I will eventually be riding the LT. So riding the LT through twisties is more stressful now then it will eventually be. This is one big, top heavy bike that requires work to ride it properly.

And, I got a cassette adapter for my IPOD and was able to listen to music I liked all day. That was wonderfully pleasant. So I got to ride with my buddies, yet get to spend a lot of time listening to music I like on a big comfy bike riding through northern California as itís sunny best. The temps all day were in the 60ís. The weather has changed today and rain is expected for northern California for nine of the next ten days. So Iím glad I got this riding in.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #44 of 52 Old Feb 14th, 2011, 7:10 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

the more you ride, the more you'll realise its just a fat sports bike with comfy seats...
if you ride daily, you start wondering why people have problems... its that easy to forget just how big it is.

Chris
Sydney, NSW
2005 Dark Graphite Metallic K1200LT
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post #45 of 52 Old Feb 14th, 2011, 7:35 pm
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Re: Introducing myself

Welcome to the wonderful world of the LT, and this forum.

I'm 47, 5'10", 170lbs. I moved up to the LT from a Suzuki Boulevard. Big Difference. You'll get use to it. I purchased mine a year ago this month, and have loved all 18K+ miles ridden thus far. A bit (actually, a lot) of parking lot practice will prove invaluable.

I noticed your travels will take you to NC. Be sure to give her a whirl at Deals Gap. You'll be amazed at the handling. Me and a few GW riders (ignorance is bliss they say) are planning to take a "little" trip this summer from Georgia to the West Coast to ride the Pacific Coast Highway and points in between. I can't wait.

Be safe. Hope to see you around.

Enjoy!!!

____________________________
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2000 K1200LT, Champagne, "The First Lady"
2009 DL650, Silver(Fastest),"WeeStrom"
2005 Suzuki Boulevard C50 (gone)
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post #46 of 52 Old Feb 19th, 2011, 3:23 am
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Re: Introducing myself

I got to this thread by searching for "IPOD" because I ultimately had the same question. Sure glad i found it! What a great post! I just purchased a 1999 K1200LTi and love it. I haven't ridden a street bike in 20 years (ride dirt bikes) but have always loved the Beemers! I'm 5'10" , 220 and have the same low speed issues you've had. I'm in SoCal and last weekend (just like you) rode from Oceanside to Del Mar on Hwy 1 down the coast. what a beautiful ride! IPOD worked great using the cassette adapter. Anyway, felt compelled to post simply because I'm ecstatic to have found folks in a similar situation to me. Oh one thing though, like a few posts above! I too am totally envious of your trip across the US. For sure that'll be something in the works for me! Be safe and enjoy!
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post #47 of 52 Old Jun 2nd, 2011, 8:51 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Introducing myself

Dear everyone,

This is a good bye post. I sold my LT this afternoon. So I am back owning one motorcycle, my 1992 Harley. No LT.

I bought the LT last December in anticipation of a cross country motorcycle ride which I did last month, 23 days, 16 states and 7,000 miles. The bike performed wonderfully. It was powerful, comfortable and a joy to ride on the highway.

The reason I sold it is that it is too big a bike for me. If you read my initial post, I was having difficulty handling it at low speeds. While that improved somewhat, I never really got to the point where I could handle it with confidence at low speed. It almost tipped over a number of times trying to maneuver it. It was just too big for me. I sold it to a guy who is smaller than I am, and about the same age, and he handled the bike better than I ever did right from the beginning. I just for off the phone with him and he is ecstatic about the bike. He and a friend are planning on a 10,000 mile ride this summer from California to the Maritime provinces of Canada.

I'm thinking of a smaller bike, perhaps something like a middle weight tourer, like the F series. I'll take a look at all the new bikes that are out there and then decide.

But one again, thank you for all your help and wisdom. You made it a lot easier for me.

Michael

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #48 of 52 Old Jun 2nd, 2011, 9:57 pm
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Location: Newton, NC, USA
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Re: Introducing myself

Michael,
Just because you no longer have an LT doesn't mean you have to throw yourself out. Stick around if you want. What the heck, go to CCR on that Harley. Might be another one in the parking lot somewhere.

Lee
Y2K K1200 LT Canyon Red - Torn apart by a Bimmer 11-10-10. Sold to Saddleman to be reanimated.
2005 K1200 LT Ocean Blue
ATGATT
CCR 2009, CCR 2010, CCR 2012
IBA #39250
SS1000 - September 2009
BB1500 - September 2009
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post #49 of 52 Old Jun 2nd, 2011, 10:21 pm Thread Starter
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Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
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Re: Introducing myself

Thanks. I'll probably keep this window open because I've got a lot of other info here besides what I got for the LT, and I've gotten to know some of you through your posts and respect the level of knowledge around here.

The LT was a good experience for me, but just not the right bike for me. The LT has made certain things clear to me. I don't want to ride any bike that doesn't have ABS. And now some are offering traction control. I like all that.

I've also gotten to really like the cruise control and the sound system. The cruise control helped me to avoid "speed creep", when all of a sudden you realize you are riding 15 mph faster than you wanted to go. The LT would be awful without cruise control. Because it is so smooth, I know my speed would just creep up there. With cruise control, I can spend my energy concentrating on other aspects of riding, and not look down at the odometer (actually the gps).

I also came to really like the sound system. So many riders are using ear plugs and an Ipod. I like that I had the choice of AM, FM, CD's or my Ipod (via a cassette adapter) coming through speakers. I turned a number of heads riding through a small town in Mississippi while listening to opera sopranos.

The cruise control may be the most difficult to replace on a middle weight tourer. Few if any offer cruise control yet, but there are some high quality aftermarket units. BTW, I like cruise control in my car for the same reason. I think I am a safer rider/driver and go slower when using the cruise control in general. It compensates for a side of me that always feels in a rush.

So I'll be around here for awhile. I don't post too often because I don't have any answer to a lot of the technical questions being asked or discussed.

But I sure do like riding, even after 45 years in the saddle.

Michael

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1999 K1200LT (recently sold, 6/11)
1992 Harley FXR
1982 Honda Sabre (long gone)
1978 Honda CB750K (long gone)
1975 Honda CB360 (long gone, stolen)
1969 Kawasaki 650 W2SS (long gone)
1967 Suzuki X6 Hustler (long gone)
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post #50 of 52 Old Jun 3rd, 2011, 7:59 am
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Location: St. Petersburg, FL, USA
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Re: Introducing myself

Hey Michael, it's been "pleasant' having you "around here" so don't "be a stranger".
When you told us your size and weight I thought the LT might be too big for you
but I didn't want to discourage you trying her out.
At "our age" most guys are looking into smaller and lighter bikes,

I had a friend that sold his BMW when he turned 80
and bought a 450 Honda because he wasn't ready to quit riding,
just didn't have the strength to ride what he wanted to anymore.

At least you got to "enjoy" the LT for a while.

Makes me think back to when I was in my 20's
for a short while I had a girl that was "stunningly beautiful
her daddy was rich, she was a model that did TV commercials,
I was a longhaired "bikerboy" whose only possesion was a Harley,
she was infatuated with this "boy in leather"
but she had so much "going for her" I knew I wouldn't be able to "keep her"
When I'm too old to do anything else, I'm gonna sit back in my rocking chair and smile
while I think about how much fun she was "to play with"


Hans
St. Petersburg FL

2002 K1200LTE
"Silver Buffalo" Totaled 5/06
2005 LT
"Esperanza"
BushtecGenesisTrailer
"Our preferred long distance carrier"



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