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post #1 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 9:26 pm Thread Starter
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ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Hi all. We are on our east to west road trip and now are in Durando CO.
During my climb on US 550 to the million dollar mile near Siverton the bike temp went to the max and the red alarm indicator illuminated at an uphill construction stop zone about 11,800 feet elevation. I am pulling a light PoggyBack trailer and have my wife aboard.
I stopped the bike, temp came while idling. I washed the radiator fins (very dusty), checked the coolant level (OK). I think. Pushed through lower elevations downhill w/o any issues.
Cools down when running level or downhill at regular speed or just idling.
I think the thermostat or water pump may have failed.
We are FAR from S Florida.
Could the elevation while pulling the trailer have aything to do with this?
Any opinions???

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post #2 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 9:55 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

I don't have an answer for you, but If there is anything that I can send or get for you, don't hesitate to call my cell phone. I've got the BMWON book handy too and can make a call or get you some numbers .. Dan 813 267 8181

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post #3 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 10:26 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Been through the same area pulling a trailer and no issues. Did you notice if the fans are coming on? Should be on well before the bars get to the top. Fuse F3 (7.5 amp) for both fans on the 05 and up. T stat or water pump would not see relief on the down hill so I don't suspect that. Could be the radiator cap is loosing pressure. But my first suspect is the fans.

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post #4 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 10:31 pm Thread Starter
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Exclamation *** ADVICE REQUESTED! ***Help***

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanDiver
I don't have an answer for you, but If there is anything that I can send or get for you, don't hesitate to call my cell phone. I've got the BMWON book handy too and can make a call or get you some numbers .. Dan 813 267 8181
Thanks Dano i will call if needed, nearest dealer is in Grand Junction CO.
I have spoke with others (in trucks & cages) pulling a trailer and they claim their temps shot up sky on the way to the apex. Tooling around town all seems normal but I am obviously concerned because we have 2,599 miles left to get home and lots of mountains and twisties enroute to attack.

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post #5 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 10:50 pm Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jzeiler
Been through the same area pulling a trailer and no issues. Did you notice if the fans are coming on? Should be on well before the bars get to the top. Fuse F3 (7.5 amp) for both fans on the 05 and up. T stat or water pump would not see relief on the down hill so I don't suspect that. Could be the radiator cap is loosing pressure. But my first suspect is the fans.
Thanks for the reply John, both fan running full out, the come on just at the lower end of the thermometer indicator. Engine not exceptionally hot although the radiators had construction dust that I washed out (could not see the fans running from the front). Odd thing is when I pulled over the second time it happened (at 12,00 feet @ 71 deg.) and just let it idle the temp came down and the red alarm went went out.
If the cap is loosing pressure would'nt the coolant overflow from the coolant reservoir and spill out?
After I washed the radiator I even squeezed the top hose in case there was an air bubble. Hard to pull the cap without left tupperware removal, but have the tools if I need to do it.

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post #6 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 10:56 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

My 04 RS did something similar once, it turned out to be the thermostat, after I replaced it much more consistent temp no matter how I rode. My infrared temp gun showed the right side radiator much cooler than the left, like 50 degrees at idle hot.
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post #7 of 38 Old Jul 10th, 2012, 11:47 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by aztechmaster
My 04 RS did something similar once, it turned out to be the thermostat, after I replaced it much more consistent temp no matter how I rode. My infrared temp gun showed the right side radiator much cooler than the left, like 50 degrees at idle hot.
HHMM, I hope I can limp home.

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post #8 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 12:23 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

It is possible to have a leak in the overflow line to the coolant reservoir which causes fluid to not be drawn back into the system properly. If you're not aware, you check the reservoir with the left case open. There is a window at the front of the case which is covered with the case closed. If your fans are running and the system is full of properly mixed (50-50) antifreeze I too would look at the thermostat and probably put on a new cap just to be sure.


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post #9 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 4:53 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

At 12K the air is thiner.

You could test the theory that towing the trailer a "mile high" is the cause by parking the tariler and riding up again.

Best from Tucson
Bob

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post #10 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 5:04 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Check out this link. A few concerns: Thermostat, both fans coming on, coolant level.....

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...lt+overheating

Dano
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post #11 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 7:39 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by BecketMa
At 12K the air is thiner.

You could test the theory that towing the trailer a "mile high" is the cause by parking the tariler and riding up again.

Best from Tucson
Bob
That is exactly what we are doing today, staying an extra day, now Cathy can go wild in the little shops around town. 12,000 feet is over 2 miles right? Thanks Bob

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post #12 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 7:48 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanDiver
Check out this link. A few concerns: Thermostat, both fans coming on, coolant level.....

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...lt+overheating
Dan, I scoured through that thread and more trying to eliminate all possibilities. Bob's post is what the plan is today, if all goes well I be comforted knowing I was just exceeding the machines design parameters. I will also post the outcome. Thanks Dan

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post #13 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 8:37 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

You've got all the elements in place to make the engine work hard. Climbing, elevation, trailer, two-up, extended idle time immediately following a workout. The perfect storm.
Engines go through a heat soak-back period following high-speed or high effort operation. When you stop moving, there is no ram air onto the radiators and the fans have alot of work to do, dumping all that excess heat. Sometimes the fans can't keep up with a spike in demand like that.

I'd be impressed if the engine temperature didn't max out.

Keep and eye on it. There is probably nothing wrong with the cooling system, just overworked.

Dave
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post #14 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 8:50 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by dukey33
You've got all the elements in place to make the engine work hard. Climbing, elevation, trailer, two-up, extended idle time immediately following a workout. The perfect storm.
Engines go through a heat soak-back period following high-speed or high effort operation. When you stop moving, there is no ram air onto the radiators and the fans have alot of work to do, dumping all that excess heat. Sometimes the fans can't keep up with a spike in demand like that.

I'd be impressed if the engine temperature didn't max out.

Keep and eye on it. There is probably nothing wrong with the co oling system, just overworked.
Thanks Dave, I further confirmed this cool morning the radiator cap is OK, I filled the res. to top and this morning it drew down to 1/2, after warming it up it again rose to the top. I Think we need to lay off of the Twinkies and dance more!

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post #15 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 9:16 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinJoe
Thanks Dave, I further confirmed this cool morning the radiator cap is OK, I filled the res. to top and this morning it drew down to 1/2, after warming it up it again rose to the top. I Think we need to lay off of the Twinkies and dance more!
I've been through the same thing twice with two different LT's over the years. Both at high altitude, up hill, loaded heavy. Both times after coming down the hill and cooling off I checked the radiator cap as you did. But decided to change the cap anyway, well it fixed the problem 100% both times.
It's a cheap and easy fix...... Just saying.

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post #16 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 9:25 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

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Originally Posted by amarider
I've been through the same thing twice with two different LT's over the years. Both at high altitude, up hill, loaded heavy. Both times after coming down the hill and cooling off I checked the radiator cap as you did. But decided to change the cap anyway, well it fixed the problem 100% both times.
It's a cheap and easy fix...... Just saying.
If I can find a dealership or equivalent cap from a parts store I'll do it in a jiffy. Is the equivalent cap (neck and pressure) rating for the 2006 LT available from a parts store like NAPA or AutoZone? Anyone know? Thank You!

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post #17 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:12 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

It is a high pressure cap 22 PSI. But if it is not holding pressure at all a lower pressure cap that does will help. +1 on just stressing the system. I don't remember it being that hot when I went through there until we hit Durango (first time I put ice in the cooler that trip).

John
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post #18 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:20 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by jzeiler
It is a high pressure cap 22 PSI. But if it is not holding pressure at all a lower pressure cap that does will help. +1 on just stressing the system. I don't remember it being that hot when I went through there until we hit Durango (first time I put ice in the cooler that trip).
John, am correct in assuming that if the cap was failing (weak) it would either overflow the coolant res. when hot or not draw coolant (stuck closed) when cold. The coolant is moving up and down in the res. I think we were just kicking the girls ass having to go soooo slow (5-10 mph uphill) on a 8% plus grade. It will be nice and warm today so I'll test it w/o the trailer. Thanks for the feedback!

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post #19 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:22 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Correct it would deffinitely overflow. I think you are OK especially if you were climbing slowly, that would be a real stresser on the bikes cooling system.

John
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post #20 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:32 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

I believe there is a shop in Cortez CO, not a dealer but a shop that works on BMWs.
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post #21 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:36 am Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

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I believe there is a shop in Cortez CO, not a dealer but a shop that works on BMWs.
thank you

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post #22 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 11:48 am
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

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post #23 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 12:47 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

while on the subject of Durango CO;..how is the air / fire smoke / fires in that area. I plan on being there in a month ???

Jim

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post #24 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 1:46 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

There's an independent shop in Mancos, between Durango and Cortez, Basin Motorcycle Works, www.BasinMotorcycleWorks.com

970.533.7005

No personal experience, but I've heard good things.


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post #25 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 5:00 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinJoe
John, am correct in assuming that if the cap was failing (weak) it would either overflow the coolant res. when hot or not draw coolant (stuck closed) when cold. The coolant is moving up and down in the res. I think we were just kicking the girls ass having to go soooo slow (5-10 mph uphill) on a 8% plus grade. It will be nice and warm today so I'll test it w/o the trailer. Thanks for the feedback!
in modern watercooled motors the coolant actually reaches 235 degrees F and if your cap does not maintain the pressure the system is designed to run at it can overheat - pressure way too low and she will boil over

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post #26 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 5:53 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by jzeiler
It is a high pressure cap 22 PSI. But if it is not holding pressure at all a lower pressure cap that does will help. +1 on just stressing the system. I don't remember it being that hot when I went through there until we hit Durango (first time I put ice in the cooler that trip).
John is correct on the cap; and I was able to find a cap at a NAPA store from a Toyota which was an 18# that got me home without a problem a couple years back. without a pressure test device it is very hard to say that a cap is good or not. When you get it back on the open road if it is overheating all of the time it is probably the cap, but after changing that I'd look into the thermostat (rarely the problem). I hope this info helps and happy motoring.

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post #27 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 6:19 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinJoe
Hi all. We are on our east to west road trip and now are in Durando CO.
During my climb on US 550 to the million dollar mile near Siverton the bike temp went to the max and the red alarm indicator illuminated at an uphill construction stop zone about 11,800 feet elevation. I am pulling a light PoggyBack trailer and have my wife aboard.
I stopped the bike, temp came while idling. I washed the radiator fins (very dusty), checked the coolant level (OK). I think. Pushed through lower elevations downhill w/o any issues.
Cools down when running level or downhill at regular speed or just idling.
I think the thermostat or water pump may have failed.
We are FAR from S Florida.
Could the elevation while pulling the trailer have aything to do with this?
Any opinions???
Similar thing happened to me today heading South out of Leadville going over 11,000 feet. I'm pulling a Bunkhouse solo as my wife rides her own bike. My temp gauge got up to the small white line but never brought on the fans. Going downhill it cooled down to where it should be. I figured it was normal as I was running in 1st and 2nd gears climbing. Camped now around Manitou Springs enjoying a cigar and a beer(s). On to Sedalia slowly.

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post #28 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 6:48 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by loansumrider
while on the subject of Durango CO;..how is the air / fire smoke / fires in that area. I plan on being there in a month ???

Jim
Jim, not even a campfire s burning, all clear! The big fire is 100% contained. We did US 550 (million $$ mile, 3 times) very pretty, lots of nice small old towns, no where near as challenging as some HD bikers led me to believe. Lots of single lane construction though!

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post #29 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 8:09 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

A little I figured out when changing the coolant...........I didn't get mine full right off and it started to run hot out on the road. I had no hose to put fluid into the radiator so I loosened the cap and blew into the reservoir through the nipple and if pushed the fluid up into the radiator. Then I refilled the reservoir.....................

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post #30 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 8:31 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by rattler50
I loosened the cap and blew into the reservoir through the nipple and if pushed the fluid up into the radiator. Then I refilled the reservoir.....................
Wow, how did that taste.

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post #31 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 8:47 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

I'm a newish owner, acquiring a 2001 LT about a year and a half ago.
This isn't much help, but, I have ridden all over the high elevation with a passenger without any cooling issues. Still, to tell the truth, I cannot remember where the temp indicator ran, other than it was higher when under more load. FYI, if anyone has trouble near Estes Park, Colorado, I am willing to see what can be done to help. I try to do my own wrenching when I can. If anyone has a wrenching fest along the Colorado Front range, I might like to take part.
Steve in Estes Park
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post #32 of 38 Old Jul 11th, 2012, 10:31 pm Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Help Update

All seems OK.
Me & wife drove the 550 there and back without the trailer. The weather was warner today, varied from 60-87 degrees. On the return trip where the uphill grade is very steep from 8000 to 11000 feet and you must go SLOWWWW due to traffic and construction, the temp bar rose to about 1/16" from the very top but no red alarm light. Once I was able to gain speed the temp quickly came down and we continued the next 70 mile to Durango without incident. I thing all is OK but will go through it all very carefully when we make it home to S FL around the end of the month. The final test will be us going to our western NC blue-ridge mountain home where I have pulled the trailer many times without any incident.
THANKS FOR ALL THE HELP AND SUPPORT!

2013 BMW Damask Red K1600GTL
2014 BMW K1600GTL-E EXCLUSIVE
2001 Honda C-250 Helix
SOLD 2006 BMW K-1200LT "The Manatee"

Smokin'


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post #33 of 38 Old Jul 12th, 2012, 4:36 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkersh1
There's an independent shop in Mancos, between Durango and Cortez, Basin Motorcycle Works, www.BasinMotorcycleWorks.com

970.533.7005

No personal experience, but I've heard good things.


John
Thank you. that is the place i was thinking of.
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post #34 of 38 Old Jul 12th, 2012, 5:43 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by rattler50
A little I figured out when changing the coolant...........I didn't get mine full right off and it started to run hot out on the road. I had no hose to put fluid into the radiator so I loosened the cap and blew into the reservoir through the nipple and if pushed the fluid up into the radiator. Then I refilled the reservoir.....................
I just tried that in the campground here. Succeeded in blowing about three tablespoons of blue juice on the ground. I will add that this morning in Colorado Springs I added distilled water to bring the level from min to max on the reservoir. Will see tomorrow on the way to Topeka. I never had the problem before going into high altitude at low speeds. We'll see with high ambient temps and high speeds with the same load.

Robert

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790)


2000 K1200LT "Latifah"
1994 R1100RSL (wife's)
1981 R80GS
1976 R90S
1965 R80/2 Frankenbike (wife's)
2001 Bunkhouse LX (given to son)
2011 Bunkhouse Queen

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post #35 of 38 Old Jul 12th, 2012, 6:30 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinJoe
no where near as challenging as some HD bikers led me to believe.
Consider the source! I did the Million Mile road last year on a VTX1300. I was fine, but comparing how I felt commuting on it, vs how I feel on the KLT...the Beemer is confidence inspiring, the V-twin cruiser? Not so much.

Seat height, foot position, and wheel rake all make a BIG difference.

------------------------
05 LT - Blue
03 VTX 1300s - fun while it lasted, sucked in the cold.
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post #36 of 38 Old Jul 13th, 2012, 5:19 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scouter-50
I just tried that in the campground here. Succeeded in blowing about three tablespoons of blue juice on the ground. I will add that this morning in Colorado Springs I added distilled water to bring the level from min to max on the reservoir. Will see tomorrow on the way to Topeka. I never had the problem before going into high altitude at low speeds. We'll see with high ambient temps and high speeds with the same load.

Robert

OK Guys, 101 degrees across eastern Colorado and western Kansas doing 77 MPH with a slight headwind, pulling the loaded bunkhouse with an additional cargo of a case of Alaskan Amber (marked Live Snakes for you dastardly types, taking it to a buddy in Sedalia) and the LT's temp. never left the center white mark. I am going to assume all is well.

Robert

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790)


2000 K1200LT "Latifah"
1994 R1100RSL (wife's)
1981 R80GS
1976 R90S
1965 R80/2 Frankenbike (wife's)
2001 Bunkhouse LX (given to son)
2011 Bunkhouse Queen

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post #37 of 38 Old Jul 22nd, 2012, 3:15 pm Thread Starter
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ADVICE REQUESTED final update

Got home to S FL today, just completed a fantastic 8,300 mile cross country trip with the wife. We loved and spent extra time in California and Colorado, what beautiful states! What a blast!
As promised an update of the overheating issue. Riding through western NC mountains proved to have NO overheating issues at all. Somehow the load, towing a trailer, high elevation, slow speed and warmer ambient temps (78-82 degrees) were the main cause.
No problems other than a worn out rear tire.
Later!

2013 BMW Damask Red K1600GTL
2014 BMW K1600GTL-E EXCLUSIVE
2001 Honda C-250 Helix
SOLD 2006 BMW K-1200LT "The Manatee"

Smokin'


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post #38 of 38 Old Jul 22nd, 2012, 5:58 pm
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Re: ADVICE REQUESTED! Help

awesome sounds like a blast.

Just Go
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Mike
Cleveland Ohio
2014 K1600 GTL Grey Wolf.
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