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Two years ago, I bought a 2003 LTC w/ 1800 miles on it. Loved the bike, and didn't mind that it was heavy, but HATED the feeling that it was so top heavy. After I dropped (eased her down gently) three times in the year I had her, the last time straining my back pretty badly, I decided I would swallow my pride, admit I hadn't the skill yet to handle this much machine, and down size.

I was looking for the LT's little brother and the pre-2005 RT seemed to be the closest thing I could find. So I regretfully sold my LT and bought a 2000 R1100RT. It felt like a featherweight after being on the LT. I could do things at low speed with the RT that I would not even attempt with the LT. I eventually sold it and bought a 2004 R1150RT.

But I still miss my LT. Even though I can handle the RT much better than the LT and it’s clearly more suited to my riding ability and confidence level, I have never been as comfortable on it as I was with the LT. I miss the cruise control, the riding position, the smooth power. The RT sets a little more forward than I like. I have added bar backs, tried several seats and seat mods, looking at trying to move the pegs forward some….all just to emulate the comfortable riding posture of the LT.

So that’s where I am. Not entirely satisfied with the RT, but I dread the thought of struggling with the weight of the LT again. I considered one of the other K bikes, the K-RS or K-GT, but both have a more aggressive riding posture than the RT.

Wish I could figure out how to trim about 100-125 lbs off the LT, especially from the top half. It would be perfect for me. Any ideas on how to lighten up the LT to a target weight of about 650-675 lbs dry? What’s on the bike that I really don’t need? Top case and good time radio come to mind right away, but I don't know how much weight they alone would account for.

Thanks,

Ron
 

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Strip off the top box for an easy 50lbs nearly. An after market exhaust would help, but that is lower on the bike, but still weight.
 

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My LT comes in closer to 650Kg laden, 2 up. Can't say its that much of a problem as I don't do any low speed manouevring (unless I really have to) and at stops I just leave it on the side-stand. At overnight stops I unload, then go back to the bike and put it on the centre stand.
 

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Hi Ron,

I would suggest trying to find a good low speed instructor to teach you how to handle her. Most of the drops happen at parking lot speeds when you are forced to stop suddenly or on gravel turning etc.

I always just accepted that with her mass I was sure to have a slow incident and it was the price (one well worth paying) for owning an LT. I then had a demonstration of what an LT will do by an experienced police instructor. Who would have thought you could do a full circle turn with her nearly scrapping the ground at 5 mile an hour and not fall over. U turns at slower than walking pace and very tight ones at that (this is after all what a police rider has to do all day long when you pass him going the other way and he wants to talk to you). Very tight fast U turns without tucking in and going down. Riding slowly up to queues of traffic without actually stopping and putting your feet down and not wobbling just getting there as they pull away.

Can my bike really do that or has it been swapped for some light weight clone? that was how i was feeling and now I know it is possible I am going to be taking training from the best available to me to learn how to do it myself.

We all know over 10mph she is fantastic and easy to handle but certainly over here slow speed riding is not taught as part of normal training and is ignored by most schools as going round curves fast is what the customer wants and the school is in a supply and demand situation. Track down a good instructor and learn the slow stuff, the bike doesn't need to be lighter you just need to learn all the slow skills none of us has been taught.

Before anyone points out you can still fall off going slow due to x y & z then yes you can it is not a miracle cure to prevent you ever laying her down again but it is a way to greatly reduce the chances of it happening by mastering her as much as you can in the area where she is most likely to bite you.

Good luck
Mike


P.S. who knew you could grin so much at such a slow speed on a bike, its like being a kid at christmas all over again.
 

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captron4601 said:
Even though I can handle the RT much better than the LT and it’s clearly more suited to my riding ability and confidence level, I have never been as comfortable on it as I was with the LT.
I bet you would find that you can handle the LT now better than you think, you've had a couple of years of riding and what you learned thru experience is not necessarily related to any one bike.

captron4601 said:
I dread the thought of struggling with the weight of the LT again.
+1 to what Mike wrote. It's all about technique and skill, some of which you can learn on your own, but a course in slow riding is worth it.

captron4601 said:
Wish I could figure out how to trim about 100-125 lbs off the LT, especially from the top half. It would be perfect for me. Any ideas on how to lighten up the LT to a target weight of about 650-675 lbs dry? What’s on the bike that I really don’t need? Top case and good time radio come to mind right away, but I don't know how much weight they alone would account for.
Ron
Working from the back, you could remove the top case, both saddlebags, rear seat (your wife rides her own bike, yes?), passenger footpegs, you could get a lighter front seat, take off the stingray, left and right wind deflectors, mirrors (put the RT or other mirrors in the empty mirror holes at the grips), left and right upper front fairing (but you will have to figure out what to do with the signal lights, you might be better off leaving this on), left and right lower fairings, and front spoiler. Probably better to leave the nose cone if you want headlights. I bet the combined weight of these items is over 110 lbs. I actually like the look of the LT when it is stripped like this. But first, test ride the beast to see if it isn't more tractable now than 2 years ago. If you buy it, get instruction on slow speed riding and practice a lot. You may find that you don't take off a darned thing!
 

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The key to keeping her upright on very slow turns . Throttle on don't touch the clutch and light to firm presure on rear brake pedal works like a charm. I have owned large bikes for tweenty five years and have ridden in drill teams . This is how ir's done even with the police guys.
 

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clayton said:
The key to keeping her upright on very slow turns . Throttle on don't touch the clutch and light to firm presure on rear brake pedal works like a charm. I have owned large bikes for tweenty five years and have ridden in drill teams . This is how ir's done even with the police guys.
Thats because thay don't have to pay for fuel and new brakes!
 
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