Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Tucson, AZ, USA
Re: LT alarm revisited and why I'm buying a Goldwing
My point of view is that if you like to ride, the most important thing is to have something you like to ride.
Enjoy whatever you get.
I ride with an eclectic group of people, trikes to 450cc sport bike, HDs and Goldwings. The Goldwing people tell me they have a similar problem to the LT's in having to remove lots of Tupperware. The HD people shoe me that there aren't any oil leaks. Some engines have run past 100K and not needed any repairs, may be due to the 6 speed tranies? One problem all of the owners complain about is how much they have to pay HD techs and they complain about what HD charges to reset their computers when they start up grading the engine so that it runs at it's full potential.
Fortunately, now HD dealers want to sell bikes.
I'm riding an LT because when I went in to buy another HD around 1999 the dealers didn't have anything to sell- a one year waiting list. To say that all of the dealers were uncooperative is an understatement. The dealership here in Tucson wanted a deposit on a bike for delivery a year later, which would be anything HD sent to them. Plus, the dealership wanted me to buy it without knowing what the price would be. I wanted the price to be set by what percentage above MSRP they were selling them now.
At that point the "sales" person started lecturing me about list price and MSRP.
I had had enough of HD attitude and walked out. I've had HD fever since I was a teenager--they cured me!!
In the past when I had my HD worked on by the dealership, something always went wrong!! I'd give them a list of what I wanted done; when I got dropped off to pick up my bike major things on the list hadn't been done. They refused to take my bike in to finish what was on the list, telling me what their next open repair slot was, in two weeks.
Repairs meant that the paint would be scratched and then we'd argue about weather it was scratched when they got my bike.
One time I had to new pistons and rings and have the cylinders board because the dealership I bought it from installed an aftermarket aluminum intake manifold because the stock ones would leak through the rubber seals. This aluminum one had O rings where it entered the head. The O rings wore out letting the aluminum rub against the head, but it still had suction.
End result, pieces of aluminum scored the jugs, rings and pistons.
When I got my bike back there were magic marker dots on each silver painted head next to the spark plugs. The tech marked each head when he did the first torque down.
At the time I was pricing out a new HD I would start adding up what had to be changes to get the engine running at full potential. Of course HD wanted me to buy their “made in America” kits, built over seas by a company they owned, and have the dealership install them, otherwise the warranty would be voided.
What that meant to me was that I'd have to wait till the warranty ran out before I could get the engine running right.
When my wife and I went to the three Honda dealers here to test ride either the Wing or the other bi bike they sold the only dealer that would let us test ride one INSISTED we negotiate a purchase price and sign a contract to buy one!! I was told that if I didn't like the bike they would void the contract.
I called Honda in CA asking if there was any dealer near me that would let a prospective buyer test ride a bike—no help from them.
I asked if I flew to CA, went to their headquarters could I test ride a Wing---NO. But, I could fly to Florida in four months and test ride one then.
When my wife an I arrived at the first Honda dealership, the largest one in Tucson, I was greeted with “Yo dude!”.
A dealer let us test ride a used Wing they had just taken in on a trade-60K on her.
As it turned out Honda was having major engine problems at that time.
Customer service at dealerships selling bikes in the same class as the HD full dressers, the wing and LTs was better than at the HD dealership, but less impressive than the “Yo dude” place.
Buying parts and getting repairs done on my HD at independent shops always meant having to deal with the negative attitudes.
I mention all of this because you are fed up with service problems—to alert you to research wherever you buy your next ride from.
Best from Tucson
Oh. I forgot to mention I had to replace some engine parts on my HD because one of the oil journals wasn't drilled exactly where it should have been. By the time that was discovered at 30K miles, it was out of warranty. Oh yea. Oil leaking from gaskets on both sides of the D-ring was never cured.
"He was a foul caricature of himself, a man with no soul, no inner convictions, with the integrity of a hyena, and the style of a poison toad." H. S. Thompson