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I am a current owner of a 2005 Yamaha Majesty Maxi Scooter, 400CC/450LBS.
I bought the bike in late 2004 as a 'Training' bike. I had not been on a bike in years, and wanted something that would ease me back onto 2 wheels.
So, anyhow, 2 years have passed by and I am ready to buy my Touring Bike, which was the plan from the get go. I would appreciate some inputs though:
Let me give you a feel as to my situation and whether or not the K 1200 LT is right for me, or too much bike. I live in Northen California, So some really great Valley, Mountain and Coastal rides. My Wife is timid when it comes to biking and I am hoping that the K 1200 LT will sell her on it.
I am guesstimating that after a trade in of my current bike, my monthly payment would be around $300. Not sure what the insurance would be.
I live 4 blocks from I-5 and work 1/4 mile from I-5 so will be riding to work.
The weather is turning here now, so this is the best time to get ready for Touring. So, I guess I am wondering, being 175lbs and what with the weight of the bike at 835LBS, is it too much? I was also wondering if BMW motorcycle had 'camps' or day classes for new riders on the big dog? I did take the weekend motorcycle training course here in California, but it did not focus on the bigger bikes. Thanks for reading this post. I look forward to participating in the forum often from now on.

Mark H.
Sacramento, CA
 

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Not sure where to begin on this one. Normally, we all say, just take it out for a test ride and it'll sell itself. But, it might be a handful from what you're coming from, although I'm confident if you take it easy and follow some simple guidelines, you'll be ok for the test ride, but it may be a little too intimidating to really get comfortable and enjoy it. It's not so much how much you weigh as how tall / long your inseam is that makes this bike a handful when coming to a stop. Keep your eyes straight ahead, keep the wheels in a straight line (do not have the front wheel turned when coming to a stop, even if you need to turn following the stop), make sure the ground is level where you are stopping, give it plenty of throttle when taking off. The only difficulty is under 5 mph and usually only when stopping. Other than that, you'll be amazed how easily it handles. Have you tried the RT as a possible alternate?
 

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weight not an issue

I am 6'4" and run between 150 and 160 and yes I have dropped and righted this lean machine 800+ and again plus for what was in the trunk and cases. I will say that I did graduate to this LT from a bike that was only 100 lbs lighter, but once rolling it feels 100 lbs lighter than the previous bike. I believe in seam will be the greatest issue, weight as long as balanced is not an issue even for a wimp like me.
 

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Look into the R1200RT. After owning several different BMW's I decided to try an LT. I have been surprised by its heft. At 6'1" 200lbs and in pretty good shape, the tippy LT has caught me off guard more than once.

Hell though, if you are like me, you can ask for advice but in the end, you'll want to find out for yourself. If the LT appeals to you, go for it. If it was a mistake, you'll know before long.
 

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As the others have said, heavier, taller, not as forgiving at low speeds. I get about 38 mpg in town (20 minutes in the city driving one way) and got 50+ on the last trip that was 2/3 highway driving.

If your motive is to own a touring bike, you are choosing the right bike and you will not be disappointed. I have my Sportster for sale, 489 pounds; didn't take me long to make the decision to sell the Sporty! It won't take you too long to decide, either!

Best of luck with your decision,
Curt
 

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This is real easy!!!!

Just go down to your BMW dealer and take a nice long test ride.....It will mean more than anything we can say here.........Pete
 

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I was hesitant when I bought my 03 LT because I was coming off a R1150RT. I really liked the RT, but my wife would never ride with me. Plus it didn't have an awesome stereo. Well when I got the LT I was intimidated by the difference in weight, but once I got over 5mph the thing was a breeze to handle. I really like the LT for its comfort, the fact my wife will ride with me, and I like the way it looks over the new RT's. Just be careful of your footing when you stop at a light. Here in Colorado we have to be extra careful this time of year because there is so much sand on the roads. It takes a week or so to get used to it, but the LT is a great ride
 

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For touring you can't beat the LT, but if you're commuting it's not the bike I enjoy pushing around. I have the good fortune to be a multi-bike owner and much prefer to ride my GS in city traffic. Only you can decide the mix between the factors you're willing to tolerate. You might want to consider renting an LT and/or RT for a weekend.

There's a large contingent of LT riders in NorCal that should be jumping in here. If not try posting to the Regional Discussions > Northern California forum. You'll likely end up with the Posse to help.
 

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And I'm of the opposite opinion. I use it for a daily commuter all the time. Different strokes for different folks.
 

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my #.02--
I was out of riding for over 40 yrs..Got back into it about yrs ago after taking the MSF BRC..Got a Honda VTX 1300..Rode it for a year including a x-ctry trip from Las Vegas to Ohio to Florida..
test rode the LT while down Tampa visiting my son and bought it the same day.
As everyone else says here, it is a handfull at first but keeping the basic rule of ALWAYS stopping with front wheels straight and watching where you're stopping, no problem.. I'm 5'9" w/ 30" inseam, 178 lbs..68 yrs of vintage..
I've dropped the LT 3 times in the first two months of owning it(bought Aug, 2005) and have never had it down since then. Using the approved technique, I've had no problems picking it up (yet).
Been across to WVa twice and multiple trips to Sacramento to see my brother and have enjoyed every d__n minute of it! It's a great touring machine.
As the saying goes, test ride and make your decision then..Good luck..Ride safe..
 

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The LT is not for the faint of heart or a weak body. It is a serious, heavy machine. I thought I had made a mistake after owning a 2006 LT for a week and dropping it twice. It has two personalities; one above 5 mph and the other below. The rider has to develop new skills for the low speed regime. This forum has helped me greatly in that quest. Now, after 2,000 miles in 34 days of ownership, I love my LT.
 

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Just sit her on the back...

The LT, once tricked out or "Fully Farkled" as we like to call it, Is the Starship of Touring Motorcycles. She's just the best ride out there.

There's a technique posted here for picking her up after you drop her.. Which is going to happen..

I was completely out of motorcycles for about 20 years. But, I was a fairly accomplished rider before that. And decided it was finally time for a bike again.

We looked at all the different brands and types of bikes and just stopped by the BMW shop last because it was on the way home. Hadn't even considered BMW before that.. Lindy climed up on the back seat of an LT and said, "This is it. This is what we need to have...So we started shopping and found one we could afford in Tulsa.

Lindy and I took the car to Tulsa, I paid for the bike and I got on her and rode her a hundred miles home. I dropped her the next day on a downhill sloping stop. With the front end turned to the right I stopped rather abruptly and she just laid down on her left side. Had to have help picking her up because at that point I didn't know "how".

She's heavy and you just have to remember to keep her in balance all the time.. You can't get lazy about it cause she want's her respect..

But above that magic 5 mph all that weight just goes away...I've flicked her around like a dirt bike a few times and was completely surprised that I could control her in that fashion..

Take a test ride and you'll soon fall in love...But it's the wife who'll seal the deal.. I guarantee it..

John
 

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If you need someone to "Sell you on it" don't do it. It's incredibly expensive, dealers act like they do you a favor by selling you overpriced parts and accessories and it's top heavy as Dolly Parton on ice skates..... With that said, I'd never own anything other than the LT as a touring bike. It's like a sick twisted love affair. I wish I didn't love it, but I do.
 

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Sell me on the K 1200 LT

Greetings Mark!

Welcome to our little web site. An outstanding first post!

You cannot be sold on an LT--or any bike for that matter. If the bike is right for your intended usage, you will know. If it's not--you will also know! The bike will, or will not, sell itself.

I started on a Bergman 650 (550 pounds). After extensive research and several test rides, I graduated to an LT. After thousands of miles on the LT, I felt (still) that the bike was a little top heavy for me. So, again after extensive research and several test rides, I re-graduated to a GT. After several thousand miles, the GT "feels" like a perfect fit.

What feels right under you will be the right bike for you. You may go through several bikes to find that perfect fit. But, that's OK. It's only money and time--and you can't take either with you! Wether you get it right the first time, or several purchases later, you will be a better, more experienced rider and consumer for it.

Best riding wishes to you!
 

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My 2pence worth,well you did ask

I came from a Honda Deauville 650cc to the LT,after being out of biking for 15 years.I love it,but I would'nt use it for sort journeys on a regular basis.I have a Yamaha Fazer 600cc for that.The LT is a great touring machine and long hauler,but for me not a sort distance commuting machine.I'm 5'10" and my wife is 5'4" and my LT is an 05 and I have no trouble with the handeling of the LT and the wife loves the room on the back.I do 1200 miles a year in all conditions and it handles great in all extremes.All the advise above is worth taking in,but in the end the only way to know is to test ride one.The K1200RT is a better commuter in my eyes and its great for touring too.Good luck with your future ride and let us know the outcome.

Dean and Heidi in the UK
 

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Spend a few hours on this site. You will pick up at least three years of experience. Then decide!

Best to you.
 

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Take one for a test ride and if its the ride for you, it'll sell itself. You'll know, it'll fit and feel right.
One warning, it's pretty top heavy compared to what you have been riding. That's something you'll get used to, just takes a while. You'll probably not want to ride with a passanger until yu get a little more comfortable with the top heavy issue and then enjoy it.
 

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Mark I would try to rent a LT for the day or weekend and do the same with a couple of your other choses for touring . But in the mountains the LT will put a smile on face :) . Jim 03 LT :bmw:
 

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My experience

I had an '81 Kaw 750 LTD that I used for 2 years both in-city and highway. It was a beater, but it ran fine. I wanted a more powerful, heavier bike because the truck slipstream would really push that Kaw all over the highway. I started looking for a Concours, went to a Kaw dealer, he didn't have any in stock, but he did have a used LT sitting on the floor. I didn't even ask about the bike, I thought a BMW and especially a touring bike was way out of my range, both pricewise and skillwise. I tried a couple of other dealerships, but even as I was looking at other bikes that red LT was sitting in my mind, quietly suggesting "Give me a try." At the end of the day I went back to the dealer and arranged a test ride. He was concerned about my lack of experience riding a big bike, and his anxiety fed mine, but he back it out of the showroom, explained all the switches and gizmos (yikes, an adjusting windshield!), and suggested a route. Just as I was starting to turn left toward the exit from the parking lot a car came speeding in on my path. I did a quick right, then a slow U turn, and got to the exit. Little did I know that by rights I should have laid that bike down with either of those manuevers, and had I done that I probably would have turned the bike off, left it laying there, and gotten into my car, never to return. But I made it safely onto the road, gave it a bit of gas, and suddenly I was on the motorcycle of by dreams. It fit me so well, it went exactly where I wanted it to go, it was smooth and powerful and laid back and assertive, and it was so confident in itself that it gave me confidence in myself. Then I took it on the highway, and D**N, I couldn't believe how different it was from the Kaw. Instant powerful response, incredible brakes, and I swear that I was moving trucks aside with my slipstream. Anyway, got back to the dealer, made him what I thought would be a lowball offer, he accepted, and we signed the papers.

Dropped it the second day after I bought it. Dropped it three more times within the first three months. I'm a slow learner. Then began to apply the right technique and haven't dropped it since. I rode it almost every day except when there was snow or ice on the road - it has incredible weather protection. I road it thru Hartford for about 10 miles every weekday to and from work, and got to where I had no anxiety about city riding, in fact I enjoyed it because it gave me multiple opportunities to practice slow speed riding and stopping technique.

Take your wife and have her sit on the bike, she won't regret it. Let her browse through all the dreamy and outrageously expensive BMW apparel while you take a test ride, you won't regret it. But be aware, when you get back from your test ride you're gonna want to take your checkbook out of your pocket. Best wishes on your choice.
 
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