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Discussion Starter #1
Here is the first of three installments of the New LT Purchase. Season 1, The Search.

I currently own a 2003 Road King Classic. A beautiful bike, that has served me well on cross county rides and all around awesome touring for the past 23,000 miles. It swallows up 12 hour days and on the last two long trips ran flawlessly while another hog had a few minor problems and an RT had a near fatal melt down; literally as wiring harness went up in smoke. However, Harley has, in my opinion, gone from making modern bikes in the retro mold to making old bikes in the retro mold. The frame geometry is antiquated and I have more advanced suspension on my mountain bike. But on a sunny day, there may be nothing more fun; and the dealer network is second to none for travelers For me I hope to extend the riding season in Seattle out much further and for that I need more protection and most importantly I NEED ABS.

Looking for a new bike is kind of like taking a vacation; the fun is broken into thirds. The first part of the vacation is the excitement of the planning, the second is the vacation itself, and the third is telling the great stories to who ever will look at your pictures and listen. Here we have the investigation (being a BMW new-b), the purchase, and finally the ride home from wherever.

I originally wanted the “new” LT and was disappointed to find the ‘07’s to be a re-badged ‘06. I really did not want to wait a year or two for the new one (including debugging) so I needed to regroup as the thought of buying an ’06 or ’07, and taking a big hit on depreciation just before the new bike was not appealing. After a little advice from this forum it appeared that it was the ’05 that I should be looking at with the new geometry, electric stand, and higher horsepower. Made sense to me, I could keep it for a couple of years before the new LT and take less of a depreciation hit than from buying an ’06 or ’07. Let’s do it! I found an over the top f’arcled one in CA. Great price for very low miles, but missed it by a day. Further looking indicated that what I missed was a real bargain; Oh well. The market is quite soft. Another difference from HD’s. Next thing you know folks are going to tell me that these bikes are quiet too!!

From my research as of October, 2006 a very nicely appointed ’05 with very low miles will be in the $15-16 range; and there are many, so if a seller gets more than that, I think they should consider themselves fortunate. For what ever reason I was now questioning myself on spending that kind of money for a “temporary” bike. Talking with a local LT rider here in Seattle who loves is ’01 (would never sell it because he loves it and because “it is worth nothing” on the market) says the HP issue is not that big of deal to him. But the integrated brakes of ’02 are a plus but didn’t see much else significantly different from ’02 to ’04 to worry about. Hmmmm. Keeping the lack of depreciation element in my mind, the ‘02/’03 version may make a lot of sense.

The price for the ‘02/’03 versions varied a bit based on miles and goodies but in general range from $9k on the very low end to about $11.5 (although many asking prices are higher) The ‘02’s I was considering were right around $10 to $11k range. An 4,000 mile ’02 stock LTC for $10.8 for example. The ‘03’s I was looking at ranged from $10.5 to $11.5. Mileage and goodies again making the spread. To get much more than $11k would be a pretty special ’03 or a very fortunate seller. And both are out there. There are some very nice bikes out there, with much invested, it is just that there is also a pretty good inventory out there as well, with only average demand. A buyers market I would say.

So it came down three things: MILES, F’ARCLES, and yes the biggie as it turns out for me, THE EXTENDED WARRANTEE issue. As it appears from talking with a couple of dealers, unless I purchased the bike from them, I could NOT get an extended warrantee if the bike was OUT of its original 3/36. I am keen on an extended warrantee for the LT. Value or not at around $1,200 +/-, I like the peace of mind. So this means that just about all of the ‘02’s and many of the ‘03’s are off my list. I ran across a great bike here on this forum. An ’03 with lots of options and extras that do push the price, and a great guy to boot. But in the end, although I think the price would have fit into the “envelope”; the bike was out of the 3/36 warrantee. (Side bar, I could have had my dealer purchase the bike from him and I purchase it, and the warrantee, from them. Cost: $500 for the service and $1,200 for the warrantee adding nearly $1,700k to the price.) As I said the inventory is pretty big. How about an ’03 with 6,000 miles for $11.5. Or an ’02 LTE with 10k miles for 11k… the list goes on. Saw today an almost unused ’02 with <1,000 miles with a starting bid of $10k on ebay.

In comes Ironhorse Motorcycles in Tucson. I called them after hours Friday night and Jim the owner is burning the midnight oil. We chat, great guy, he has an ’03 for sale, service just done, good price, and yes the original owner purchased an extended Pinnacle unlimited mile Warrantee through 2009. Checked some Ironhorse references from this site. On Saturday I called to confirm the options and the deal (tough call for me because the bike had 25k on the dial, considerably more than many of the others) but we made it work. Sent a deposit. I expect only the best from these guys and I will be on a plane Wednesday for the pick-up and the awesome 1,600 mile ride home. Nothing like a couple iron butts to break in my new steed.

So ends the first season of the new LT if you are still awake. Stay tuned for Season II, The Engagement. I’ll keep you posted on both how the long distance purchase concept worked out and how the experience with Ironhorse Motorcycles plays out as well.

Ride-on
 

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Hello,

25K on an '03 is not alot of mileage. That breaks down to just over 8K a year. So, good luck with it. You didn't mention what the price was, or did I miss something.

Also, I believe you are better off staying with an '03 or later due to the rear drive issues reported. I have an '03. Bought it with 800 miles on it 18 months ago. It now has almost 21K.. Sure is easy to put mileage on them.
 

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Ken, we're looking forward to hearing more of your LT "journey". Thanks for sharing!

Wednesday won't get here soon enough, eh? Have fun on that ride home, and be sure to tell us about it.
 

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Welcome to the herd, and no offense intended, but your post seems to belong in "Chit Chat" since you didn't ask for any advice or tell us anything we didn't already know about bikes and prices of the '01 to '06 years.

Again, I know I'm going to seem insensitive, but I have to ask "Why did I have to know all this?"
 

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George_S said:
Again, I know I'm going to seem insensitive, but I have to ask "Why did I have to know all this?"
I'm thinkin that's just his way of introducing himself
and lettin us know how much thought he put into his "journey"
There's riders of lotsa different levels on this forum sharing information, and that's "all good"
Some of us know a little, some a lot
and then there's the guy's from Jersey who know it all :)
 

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I think you will be very happy with the bike, and from past posts think Iron Horse is a pretty good dealer.

You did not say if you have ever ridden an LT before. Is the ride home going to be your first experience on one?

Coming from the Harley, it is certainly going to be a different ride, but for just about everyone here who has ridden Harleys a much better one. WAY more power (after 4,000 RPM) and much better handling. You may feel it is wandering a little, but that is because the LT is so easy to turn, any slight pressure on the bars, even if you do not realize you are doing it, will initiate a move. Many coming from large cruisers have said the LT turns if you just think about it. The Harley actually takes a little effort. Also, once in a turn, the Harleys usually take a little pressure to keep it where you want it, the LT is basically "hands off" once established.

First thing you will have to un-learn is shift points! Don't treat the LT like a Harley, shifting at 3,000 RPM or so. This fat lady loves to sing, the best riding is between 3,500 and 7,500 RPM. Try to get in the habit of shifting so that the RPM never drops below 3,500, maybe 3,000 if just cruising around. Below 3,000 is treating the "K" engine badly.

Hope your deal and the ride home both go great!
 

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SilverBuffalo said:
and then there's the guy's from Jersey who know it all :)
Thank you! At the rate many guys from Jersey are moving to the Sunshine State, you all should be up to speed in a couple of years! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
George_S said:
Welcome to the herd, and no offense intended, but your post seems to belong in "Chit Chat" since you didn't ask for any advice or tell us anything we didn't already know about bikes and prices of the '01 to '06 years.

Again, I know I'm going to seem insensitive, but I have to ask "Why did I have to know all this?"
LOL, but point noted.

To be in complete compliance with section 4.3 sub paragraph 2 of the Rules and Conduct of Forum Posting, I will amend the post with the following:

"Can someone please give me some information and advice for the ride home. My routing software indicates a road closure on Hwy 15 in Utah. Anyone familiar with this stretch of road? It appears significant. If it is closed will the detour really slow me up? If so I may have to take the I-5 (yuk) route out of Tucson. Any info would be great."


I-15 Road Closed between Fillmore and Nephi (August 1, 2006 - November 30, 2006)

Thanks, and all in fun.
 

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hdfan said:
LOL, but point noted.

To be in complete compliance with section 4.3 sub paragraph 2 of the Rules and Conduct of Forum Posting, I will amend the post with the following:

"Can someone please give me some information and advice for the ride home. My routing software indicates a road closure on Hwy 15 in Utah. Anyone familiar with this stretch of road? It appears significant. If it is closed will the detour really slow me up? If so I may have to take the I-5 (yuk) route out of Tucson. Any info would be great."


I-15 Road Closed between Fillmore and Nephi (August 1, 2006 - November 30, 2006)

Thanks, and all in fun.
Just to help you along, the owner of Iron Horse in Tucson is John Cartwright - a great dealer and a hell of a nice guy. Jim is the parts manager. Just to make things even more interesting there is a John in parts as well, not to mention a couple more in service. I think they have finally come around to calling them 1,2 and 3 or something like that. I call them all gurus - since they really do know their stuff...

Make sure you go to Page via Flagstaff, then the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce and then on your merry way back home. You won't regret it! If you've got heated seats and grips you will be in heaven, and if you don't an electric vest would be a good investment at Iron Horse as well.
With all three you will NEVER get cold.

Welcome to the nuthouse, and when you get home and decide you need a new seat I know a guy in Tucson who can help you out. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hey Ron, good news/bad news, it already has a Kontour seat!

Thanks for the tips for the ride back. I will run those through Streets and Trips and check the timing as I have just over 2 days to make the trip this time. This is my second time through the area this year, the first being in June on my way back from a 6k round trip to San Antonio when I had a couple more days. That trip took me on the rim (awesome) over to Sedona, the Grand Canyon, through Monument Valley, Moab, up through the Tetons, Yellowstone then I-90 Slab back to Seattle. AZ and UT are great places to ride; you folks are lucky. Can't wait to try your seat!
 

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hdfan said:
Hey Ron, good news/bad news, it already has a Kontour seat!

Thanks for the tips for the ride back. I will run those through Streets and Trips and check the timing as I have just over 2 days to make the trip this time. This is my second time through the area this year, the first being in June on my way back from a 6k round trip to San Antonio when I had a couple more days. That trip took me on the rim (awesome) over to Sedona, the Grand Canyon, through Monument Valley, Moab, up through the Tetons, Yellowstone then I-90 Slab back to Seattle. AZ and UT are great places to ride; you folks are lucky. Can't wait to try your seat!
Hey, Ken - if you make that San Antonio run on ocassion, ping me if you have some free time and I'll squire ya around the Tejas Hill Country and introduce you to the three ladies - TX byways 335, 336 and 337. Rider peg replacements aren't all that expensive!!! :bmw:

Congrats on the LT find - Xmas farkle list started yet?!?! ;)

Ride safe.
 

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I bought my '05 from Iron Horse, and couldn't have been happier with the whole experience. John Cartwright picked my wife and I up from the airport, brought us to his dealership, where my new '05 sat all polished up and serviced. He had all the paperwork done properly, which made registration in California a "walk in the park".

Please, give my regards to John, when you see him, and tell him that I'll be back to Tucson someday. When I do come back, I'll make sure and drop by to see him.

Happy Riding
 

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hdfan said:
Hey Ron, good news/bad news, it already has a Kontour seat!

Thanks for the tips for the ride back. I will run those through Streets and Trips and check the timing as I have just over 2 days to make the trip this time. This is my second time through the area this year, the first being in June on my way back from a 6k round trip to San Antonio when I had a couple more days. That trip took me on the rim (awesome) over to Sedona, the Grand Canyon, through Monument Valley, Moab, up through the Tetons, Yellowstone then I-90 Slab back to Seattle. AZ and UT are great places to ride; you folks are lucky. Can't wait to try your seat!
That IS good news - don't forget that each seat is made for a specific weight range, and if it doesn't feel quite "right" for you we can easily mod it for a small fee.
 

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RonKMiller said:
That IS good news - don't forget that each seat is made for a specific weight range, and if it doesn't feel quite "right" for you we can easily mod it for a small fee.
:rotf: Sorry Ron, I just didn't want to resist this one.
 

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hdfan,
Just made the trip from Hoodsport, Wa. to Surprise, Az., last week. Two days, 1600 miles. took the I-15 route down through UT. from I-84 from 205 and I-5. Went through LV but if you have the time the Page route from Flagstaff is scenic but slower. Used my trusty old '99.
 
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