LT Too Easy to Turn? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 12:58 pm Thread Starter
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LT Too Easy to Turn?

Background: I've owned a bunch of bikes of all sizes, and have ridden a few miles over the years. (30+ bikes, 190K miles). I've also had a bit of on-road professional rider training, and consider myself a decent rider.

Issue: I find it more "difficult" to hold a clean, consistent turn radius with my LT than other bikes I've owned. The counter steering forces are "so" light that, compared to other bikes, large or small, it turns too easily.

This weekend I did about 100 miles on reasonably technical back roads just to focus on turn techniques, and was able to put the bike where I wanted in turns......start point, radius, apexing where I wanted, etc. But.... it seemed to require more concentration than I"m used to. Maybe I'm just getting older. Again......I'd describe what I'm experiencing as ....it turns too easily.

My bike is a '99 with 96K miles but has a set of almost new, low mileage,used, shocks just installed, everything in the steering and suspension is OK, tires are in good shape and at the right pressures.

Comments and critiques welcome.

JD

Jeff Dunkle
Ocala, FL
2000 LT - Motorvation Formula II
1995 R100GS
2004 Burgman 650 (wife's)
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post #2 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 1:08 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

Steering dampner???

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post #3 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 1:20 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

Go faster. It's like the old Husqvarnas, the harder you ride the better she handles. Just pin the ears back and let her go.
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post #4 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 2:01 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

The LT is under sprung from the factory with new shocks. Throw a set of Ohlins on her with a stiffer spring rate and keep the revs up around 5K in the tight stuff.
01 LT on Rails even two up.............

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post #5 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 2:49 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

Quote:
Originally Posted by amarider
The LT is under sprung from the factory with new shocks. Throw a set of Ohlins on her with a stiffer spring rate and keep the revs up around 5K in the tight stuff.
01 LT on Rails even two up.............
Or you could add better springs to the existing shocks assuming they are not shot and save a lot of cash.

Regards & Ride Safe!

Bruce
'09 Black LT
4-Wheels moves the body, 2-wheels moves the soul.
IBA # 8547
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post #6 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 4:36 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

Jeff, just for grins see if you can get a hold of a post 2005 for a ride and see if the changes that were made in the later model years makes a difference?

Bill
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post #7 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 4:50 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

I agree, new shocks or springs is like night and day difference in the way the bike handles. I changed my shocks at around 50,000 miles. Don't know why I waited so long.
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post #8 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 4:55 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

I would guess shock, damper but also the big handle bars don't require much force to counter steer like some bike.

But I also notice if I don't give it a bit more throttle coming out of a long turn it will tend to move out of its line. My bike likes the revs up and keep pushing the revs up a bit through the turn and the line is always perfect then, unless I look in the wrong place during the turn and then all bets are off.

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post #9 of 11 Old Oct 18th, 2011, 7:44 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

I came from cruisers....BIG cruisers. When I rode the LT it was downright scary. I too felt that the steering was terribly light. After spending the last two years on it I feel very comfortable with it. So much so that when I ride my cruiser, I can't stand the heavy front end steering on it. It's like driving a new sports car vs. driving a '50 Ford with manual steering. Maybe there's nothing wrong with it...it might just be a comfort issue. I got some good understanding on the issue when I read an article about positive, negative and neutral steering. The LT seems to lean toward the neutral which can feel odd if you're not used to it. Good luck.

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post #10 of 11 Old Oct 23rd, 2011, 5:18 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

Never gave this much thought until I saw this thread. I find the same characteristics on my 09LT. So over the past couple days I really had to work on finesse to hold a smooth turn. It took some practice but you must be very light on the handle bars. Even while using the throttle manually, one would not think it is impacting, but working the throttle can break the smooth maneuver. Cruise control on a level curve helps provided no accel or deceleration takes place. When I get a chance to ride another bike...I will try the same.
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post #11 of 11 Old Oct 24th, 2011, 2:55 pm
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Re: LT Too Easy to Turn?

My friend Randy, who is smarter than I am, once suggested that the reason BMW's (Flying Bricks and R Models) turn so easily is because of the gyroscopic effect of their engine designs.

Did you have a gyroscope when you were a child?

Think about a spinning gyroscope and how hard it is to turn it in a direction different from the direction of its rotation. BMW's have a lot of mass within the engine that is rotating on an axis perpendicular to the direction the motorcycle is traveling. That makes it easier to lean the motorcycle from side to side, as compared to a bike (V-Twins and upright 4's, etc.) in which the crank and flywheels are rotating in the same direction the motorcycle is traveling. In the latter example, the gyroscopic energy created by the rotation of the engine fights any effort to lean the motorcycle and to go any direction other than straight ahead.

Randy's theory made sense to me. I hope I explained it well enough.
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