Your thoughts on used K1200LT - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2013, 5:13 pm Thread Starter
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Question Your thoughts on used K1200LT

Hi everyone, I'm still wet behind the ears on this site so please go easy....

I've been riding a 2000 Road King for 7 years. Never did more than a couple hundred miles in one day, and have never done an overnight. But I'd like to start doing some touring, and my bucket list is to ride the canyonlands for a couple of weeks. So I'm trying to gather opinions on what used bike might best suit my needs.

First: my other half says she'll tour with me, but she's not ridden a full day with me yet. So I'm skeptical she'll follow through. Just *maybe* the heated seat, stereo and armrests, with a quiet muffler will convince her. So I want a comfortable pillion.

My next bike will definitely have ABS and heated grips. I'd like the heated seat, traction control and adjustable windshield. My preliiminary BMW research leads me to believe that the K bikes might take a little less maintenance and be easier to maintain than the R bikes - though I like the weight of the R-bike better. As far as BMW goes, I've only ridden an R1200GS. I'm not sure how advanced of a rider I'll ever become as far as speed needs and really getting it on in the twisties.

I ran across a 2002 K1200LT with only 22k miles on it. He's asking $6,800 and it's LOADED and very clean. The guy is 2 hours away and I haven't ridden any other models to compare with, so I'm hesitant to just go out there and BUY it.

One last thing (and I realize you're mostly biased towards BMW). I'm also considering the FJR1300 because it is less expensive and easier to find parts/mechanics. I wouldn't be doing much if any of the service on anything I buy.

I appreciate your thoughts!
Thanks,
Mike
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2013, 6:44 pm
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I'd suggest that your best single source of information (from a firehose) would be bmwlt.com where K12LT riders congregate on-line. Just be aware that when everything is going right, no one posts a celebration; whenever things go wrong, the whining begins.

Larry Johnson
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2013, 9:10 pm
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No LT ever had traction control.

The LT is a superb two-up tourer. Have a BMW expert look any bike you are interested in look the bike over for you with special attention to the rear of the engine and timing chain cover for oil leaks. If you can, get a service history on the bike. Make sure the ABS works properly.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 26th, 2013, 4:39 pm
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Like said above...clutch and abs...Known faults with the Ks (brick) and will set you back just about as much as you paid for it...and they will happen, mileage really does not seem to be a factor for either one....could be tomorrow or it could last you another 50 thousand miles. If it were me I would stay away and look for something more price friendly as far as repairs go. especially what I know now and with endless owners having these two issues come to light every day on the K sites.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 26th, 2013, 11:47 pm
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IMHO, at some point you'll see that the LT is bloated, loaded with lots of stuff that costs a lot to fix and which has little or nothing to do with getting down the road. If that's what you want, look very hard at Gold Wing. Honest.

But... if you want to get down the road comfortably but, as your skills improve, with as much gusto as you like (and LEO won't lock you up for), look hard at the GT. Yes, if you really twist the loud handle, you will go down the road a helluva lot faster than you think (or might want). But the GT won't turn and bite you, either. If anything, it's far more likely to get you through situations that demand excellent steering, handling, and manageable power - in short, those moments when your life is cuing up to pass before your eyes.

Traction control... perhaps you mean adjustable ride or springing (ESA)? Other than really terrifyingly fast bikes, traction control is hard to come by.

R's in general, aren't quite as aggressive as the K's. OTOH, you can expect a lot more shifting to keep the engine turning at a speed it likes. The K's are pretty forgiving on this point. At the moment I'm on a R1100RT loaner while my K1200RS is getting a new alternator (stuff happens). The RT is surprisingly zippy, but it demands up and down shifts to keep it happy, while my KRS can be brought up to 6th and cruised without a ton of gear jamming. 'Course, if I want to get going in the twisties, my left foot and hand will be busy, too.

The R's have two cylinder engines - inherently fewer parts to go sour, but where the K's can be turbine smooth, R's just won't be there. It's not a good or bad thing, it's a personal choice issue.

Feegers... not a bad bike. Lots of people have them. They're cheaper to maintain but... if you're in for the long haul, your BMW will probably still be going when a Feeger's called it a lifetime. The RT I'm on now has 100,000+ on the clock, and I can still walk away from fast freeway traffic.

Not all who wander are lost. Which still leaves room for more than a few lost wanderers...

Red Flash - '03 K1200RS, lightly farkled
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old Aug 27th, 2013, 10:16 am
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Which Bike?

A very difficult question, made even harder by the fact you have to try and keep your pillion happy! I bought my 1999 K1200RS about 18 months ago so that I could take my wife on the back, the ZX9R was not pillion friendly. I had a limited budget as I intended to keep the 9r.

I looked at the following bikes all of which have ABS or optional ABS: 1000 V Strom, TDM900 and Honda Pan ST1100(with abs and traction control) on all of these bikes you do sit more upright which IMO helps with pillion comfort.

In the end I went for the K1200RS as it was faster/more powerful than the others and I felt all of the above were to much of a compromise for me. IMO the BMW is an excellent pillion bike mainly due to the telelever front end which all but stops the fore and aft transfer of weight and allows the pillion to relax even during reasonably hard acceleration and braking.

The only down side to this story is that my wife wants to come out with me far to often now a days

Mark

PS: I have now sold the 9R as I feel that the k1200rs is all that I need.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old Sep 13th, 2013, 3:51 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RBEmerson
IMHO, at some point you'll see that the LT is bloated, loaded with lots of stuff that costs a lot to fix and which has little or nothing to do with getting down the road. If that's what you want, look very hard at Gold Wing. Honest.

But... if you want to get down the road comfortably but, as your skills improve, with as much gusto as you like (and LEO won't lock you up for), look hard at the GT. Yes, if you really twist the loud handle, you will go down the road a helluva lot faster than you think (or might want). But the GT won't turn and bite you, either. If anything, it's far more likely to get you through situations that demand excellent steering, handling, and manageable power - in short, those moments when your life is cuing up to pass before your eyes.

Traction control... perhaps you mean adjustable ride or springing (ESA)? Other than really terrifyingly fast bikes, traction control is hard to come by.

R's in general, aren't quite as aggressive as the K's. OTOH, you can expect a lot more shifting to keep the engine turning at a speed it likes. The K's are pretty forgiving on this point. At the moment I'm on a R1100RT loaner while my K1200RS is getting a new alternator (stuff happens). The RT is surprisingly zippy, but it demands up and down shifts to keep it happy, while my KRS can be brought up to 6th and cruised without a ton of gear jamming. 'Course, if I want to get going in the twisties, my left foot and hand will be busy, too.

The R's have two cylinder engines - inherently fewer parts to go sour, but where the K's can be turbine smooth, R's just won't be there. It's not a good or bad thing, it's a personal choice issue.

Feegers... not a bad bike. Lots of people have them. They're cheaper to maintain but... if you're in for the long haul, your BMW will probably still be going when a Feeger's called it a lifetime. The RT I'm on now has 100,000+ on the clock, and I can still walk away from fast freeway traffic.
Have you ever ridden an LT. It ain't no slouch on the twists or on the open road. I am on my second one. First a 01 which I traded in with 80K on the clock. Second is an 09. We have both r and K,s in the house. 09 GT, 07 GT, 05 R 1200 ST and77 R/75. I am an old fart but manage to stick with the kids on the ST and GT. yeah they can out do me but ain't a gold wing that can in the twists anyway. Open road any decent bike can do

I did replace a rear at 76k but had it rebuilt and installed for under $500.00. Got it back for the dealer after a tire change and the ABs didn't work. Dealer screwed it up. It ended up being the air gap on the front ABS sensor which I figured out reset worked great after that and that was the 01. The GT is a great bike I really love them. Lite weight at 550 that's 300 lbs lighter than the LT. Great power but I don't like the handle bars. I lean to far forward even with them all the way up. I know I can put a higher riser on and probably will cause I see a GT in my future. By the way that is probably a fair price and market value.

Good luck in whichever way you decide

Al
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old Sep 17th, 2013, 4:11 pm
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LT vs GT

I ride a KGT, but have ridden an LT and RT for long distances. Completely different touring machines. All are excellent in their own ways.

GT - powerful and mapped for performance. Read high revving high performance bike that is a contender even on the Track. I've dropped the luggage off and done just that - and kept up with the crotch rockets on the Tail of the Dragon.

LT - essentially same engine, but completely different mapping - more aimed at torque, and ride. Not my cup of tea, but I've seen them master tough technical roads and do so with a lot more creature comforts than I have on my KGT.

RT - I actually like the RT a lot - mostly because of that wonderful Boxer engine. Lower reving and lower performance, but light and definately not slow...and I think the best long distance bike of the three.

Note - the price of LTs seems to be low now because so many are being traded in for the new K1600GTL. Now that is a machine.

"What follows is based on actual occurrences. Although much has been changed for rhetorical purposes, it must be regarded in its essence as fact. However, it should in no way be associated with that great body of factual information relating to orthodox Zen Buddhist practice. It's not very factual on motorcycles, either."

Robert Persig - Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


1985 K100RS (Sold)
2000 323i (Sold)
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 2013, 4:37 pm
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I used to own a K1200LT. Great bike. I liked the power and amenities. But what I didn't like was the bike's weight and top-heavy feel at parking lot speeds. I always felt like I was going to drop the bike, especially when coming to a stop. The top-heavy feel was amplified when my wife rode pillion. I eventually sold the LT and went back to a Harley touring model.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 2013, 8:52 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike-OH
Hi everyone, I'm still wet behind the ears on this site so please go easy....

I've been riding a 2000 Road King for 7 years.

I ran across a 2002 K1200LT with only 22k miles on it. He's asking $6,800 and it's LOADED and very clean. The guy is 2 hours away and I haven't ridden any other models to compare with, so I'm hesitant to just go out there and BUY it.

One last thing (and I realize you're mostly biased towards BMW). I'm also considering the FJR1300 because it is less expensive and easier to find parts/mechanics. I wouldn't be doing much if any of the service on anything I buy.

I appreciate your thoughts!
Thanks,
Mike
Just saying.....but if your on a Rking now...looking at an Lt and a Fj, you should do more homework...3 completely different animals...
just sayin..

kbikeinbc
07 Kgt
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