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Discussion Starter #1
This might sound like a dumb question, but it's for two reasons. 1 - was reading a post not long ago and a couple of you said something to the effect of not driving the LT like a sport bike, or buy a sport bike. And 2 - was thinking about the fd failures.
So, with respect to #1, what's meant by driving like a sport bike? Every bike I've owned has been ridden from peg to peg, including my new-to-me LT. I thought that it's ability to corner hard and fast was one of it's biggest draws.
With respect to #2, since there seems to be no common link to the fd failures, one might suspect simple metal fatigue. If that were the case, it could certainly be brought on by abusive driving characteristics. I suspect that most of us believe that we drive correctly, but that just might be subjective.
What I'm trying to do is avoid shock loading the drive train. With my Harleys, and all my other bikes, I use the gears to slow down, and really just hammer them through the twisties. I'm trying to avoid that kind of driving with this bike, thinking that I might prolong metal fatigue type failures. I'm shifting easier (but won't hesitate to open the throttle once the clutch is out and engaged), and am coasting to stops, using brakes and not the engine. Does this make any sense? And how do some of you more seasoned owners/riders drive?
Thanks,
Frank
 

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No.

If you scan the posts on FD failures, you'll see they do not correlate with anything. Unfortunately, there are years and years and years and years of FD posts speculating about FD failures.

Maybe the biggest thing to get used to is the linked ABS brakes on your bike and remembering that we have to go straight at snail speed, and to stop with the front tire pointing straight ahead.

I ride my LT to enjoy the ride.
I ride the road I'm on safely.
I ride more than twice a week, year round.

Have FUN
Bob
 

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I drive my LT hard whenever I can I use the gears at times to slow it and I ride it peg to peg when the situation allows. It does handle corners like a sport bike though its weight makes it, I would imagine, a bit les nimble. But I don't baby the bike at all ever. I bought it to ride it and that's what I do. My advice, enjoy all of its many and varied capabilities. Mine is a 2000 with closing in on 48k. It has had no problems with the FD or anything else as near as i can tell. I bought it used last May with 38k on the odometer. I love this bike. To me it is a great blend of sports bike and super highway long distance tourer that my wife and I can be comfortable on for hours. Just ride it and enjoy it and don't spend any time fretting about the what ifs.
 

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I am hard on the girl.... no complaints, knock on wood. 50K. I just do my normal maintainance and hope for the best....

I ride it like I wanna ride.
 

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I treat it like any other motorcycle when riding one-up, but I always remember that it has a low clearance. Meaning, turns at speed can scrape parts of the undercarriage.

When I ride two-up, I am always aware that I have a passenger that I am responsible for and while I might be willing to risk something during the driving phase that they may not. So I ride with that in mind and their safety is always my primary concern.

PS: When I want to ride harder and one-up I ride my RT. That's one (of many) reason why I ahve two. A good used RT isn't all that expensive to purchase and easy to maintain (relatively speaking).
 

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The only possibility that might contribute would be long distance riding, after an Iron Butt ride, (SS1000 & BB1500) in three days total 2K miles. I had a FD failure. but who knows. about 35K miles on the clock at the time of failure.

PS I have changed all oils at 6K miles since I have owned the bike, which had 6K+ on it at purchase. At 18K switched to synthetic oils.
 

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I RIDE mine. Like I stole it:)
 

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Probably the worst thing you can do to an LT is to lug it around and drive it like a V-Twinn cruiser. My LT shifts better and smoother at high rpm's but I don't power shift and hammer it off the line either. Take off the top box and you will be supprized at the difference in handling.
 

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Just getting back into the LT after 6 years and still owning a GS. The LT allows me to do all that I did with the GS except off-road and I would not do that.

The comfort and nimblenes is exceptional but also spoils me to thinking I am riding a lighter bike unless you are trying to manouver the extra slow speeds. So yeah, I ride it like I stole it but I try to remember to respect her qualities and characteristics.

Enjoy...
 

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stevea2980 said:
I guess you didnt know that the LT is an 800Lb sport bike!!!

Later All

Steve A
See now this is where I have to differ. While she does feel pretty good for a bigger bike, I constantly scrape in corners and the LT absolutely scares the crap out of me when going over 100 mph. where as my 2000 Suzuki TL 1000 S would cruise at 100 and only scare me after 160ish to 170ish....it was a little blury..ish.
 

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Gentle Cruising sometimes.
More often fast, somewhat aggressive riding.
Don't scrape the pegs, but feather the rear brake into turns to keep the drive line loaded and to control speed into the twisties, rolling on the throttle into high rpms.
This is a wonderful bike. No it isn't a sport bike, but as a heavyweight, luxo-tourer it is in a class by itself. Solid in the corners, the weight adds stability and comfort, and the engineering provides remarkable handling for a bike of its size.

After learning the limits of the bike: Lean angles: yeah, you can scrape the pegs and bodywork if you like grinding on the bike, I just keep lean angles shy of where the scraping occurs.
RPMs: watch the red line and learn where the rev-limiter kicks in, I just keep it below those RPMs.

This bike can be ridden anyway you want, but IMO if you always ride it like a GoldWing or HD bagger, you are missing the point. :)

There is no evidence that riding it hard will contribute to final drive failure.

If you are really worried about FD failure (you probably don't need to be) I would rebuilt it with a new bearing with careful attention to proper assembly. Faulty bearings and improper assembly are the two primary suspects in FD failures.
 

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I thought I was riding my LT pretty aggressively, and was not worried about the FD.
However, the last time I went by the guys that do most of the work on it. (I'm mechanically challenged.) They both said not to down shift too early. In fact both mechanics (BMW guys forever) said they do not down shift, just use the brakes..
They also sort of "pre-load" the shifter when up shifting. Meaning lift the slack out and feel the tension when upshifting, so that when you do pull in the clutch it almost pops up into the next gear.
I've been doing both since talking with them. I was thinking brake pads would be cheaper and easier than a FD failure..
I still like to think it's a big sport bike though. Just put new metzlers on it and love to lean it over in a tight turn :D , after turn, after turn..
Jeff
 

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stevea2980 said:
I guess you didnt know that the LT is an 800Lb sport bike!!!
Although I pretended like mine was a sportbike, that's all one can do. The ol' LT simply runs out of lean angle far too early. Probably a good thing though. But if the poster is trying to associate FD failures with how one is ridden, I don't believe that there's a correlation at all.
 

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Yes I do agree you do run out of lean angle in the corners but the amount of available angle is enough to satisfy me as to whether this bike is sports oriented IE an "800 Lb Sport Bike"

We have all seen the pictures of people taking there LT's to the track and I havent seen any pics of HD's or GW there yet.

I have had my 1999 Lt for almost 8 years and have rode her hard sometimes. I give up long before she has ever given up and she has never faulted me!!

My friends and relatives on there "Other Brands" dont keep up when I lite the fires in her soul!!

Later All

Steve A
 

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My 2001 LT has 85.5K hard miles on it.
It's a great highway bike,
but even more fun on the twisties.
I've worn out my footpegs,
broke and replaced my centerstand,
wore out and replaced the sidestand,
wore a hole in my front right lower fairing.

Had Capitol BMW check my final drive at the 82K service.
One bearing showing very slight wear.
Changed it.
No problem, even after pulling a Bushtec Quantum trailer for several thousand of miles.

The LT knows it can do it.
You just have to believe that it can, too.
 
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