GT wins - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old May 28th, 2006, 8:33 pm Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2006
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GT wins

I confess, I was one of those questioning the $8k price difference between the new Yamaha FJR and the K1200GT. This Forum and others convinced me to buy the K (Crystal Grey) when someone failed to take delivery of one. Also, it was brand loyalty as my first serious street bike was 75/6 and I was seriously attached to my ’02 R1150RT. I just had this urge to try something new. I picked it up last weekend and left Wed for a planned trip with friends. My dealer told me not to worry about the 600 mile check-up, but take an extra quart of oil along ( unlike the boxers – it was never used ) and bring it in when I got back. Well, now after 1800 miles in 4 days from Western PA down the Appalachians, across the Blue Ridge Parkway, through the Tail of the Dragon, across the Cherohola Parkway, back across the Blue Ridge Parkway, and back through the WV Appalachians …. I am In Love. From 40 degrees to 85 degrees, sun to rain, 2000’ to 5400’, bend after bend and a few hundred interstate miles, my personal land speed record (confidential) and my first bike speeding ticket (not during my land speed record, thank God) – VA sheriff informed me it was actually wreckless driving at that speed, but as a former bike owner he just let me pay the fine. The bike ran absolutely flawlessly. Just some thoughts and comparisons to R1150RT for anyone considering the change:

In the twisties: No comparison. The K tracks like a fiend. If you drop the bags and run in 2nd and 3rd gear it is darn near a sport bike. The RT was capable, but the K is outstanding.

On the highway: Cruise control was fantastic and as others have written – spot on. The GPS also confirms that the speedo is much more accurate. 1-2 mph different at 80 vs. 4- 5 for the RT. My first change on the RT was a Sargent Seat and although I did like the heat idea one cool morning my 51 year old butt was in agony by day 3. The seat will have to go. For whatever reason the RT seemed more planted when there were brisk side winds. Maybe the flat side panel acts like a sail??

Ergonomics: I am 5’ 11 and average build. I played with the seat positions and windshield (tall version) positions quite a bit and found that the low seat position with the handle bars fully raised was very similar to the RT as far as torso position. I ended up riding with the seat low and the windshield up about a third of the way. The wind protection was never quite as good as the RT though and I am watching the windshield threads with interest. Unfortunately, somewhere in day 3 and on into day 4 I noticed some discomfort in the knees. Of course, at my age 450 mile days with 80% on the back roads it is probably not totally unexpected, but the legs are a bit more forward and bent than on the RT. I did miss the Elf highway pegs on the highway stretches. No where to really add a highway peg to a K-bike I guess. I may look into a lowering kit, but I don’t want to compromise clearance too much.

Misc: The center of gravity makes the K feel so much lighter. Coming to a stop in gravel on the RT and you had to pay attention to keep upright – it felt much more top heavy. Even wheeling the K around in the garage it feels smaller. I stand flat footed on the K with the seat in the low position and nearly do in the high position. The RT was taller and I couldn’t get both feet flat on the ground. The luggage is also major upgrade from ’02. The easily accessible battery and oil dipstick are great. And after the trip I noticed that cleaning the K was much easier with fewer hard-to-get places.

Sorry about the long winded essay, but in a nutshell – I spent the difference and I couldn’t be happier!!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old May 29th, 2006, 11:22 am
 
Join Date: May 2006
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Great Thread

I am also coming out of a an RT I thought I would never give up.
The GT is so much more nimble in its handling that I quickly forgot about "old dependable"
I can't wait to get up in the mountains.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old May 29th, 2006, 11:43 am
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Location: Springfield, VA, USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelMulroy
I am also coming out of a an RT I thought I would never give up.
The GT is so much more nimble in its handling that I quickly forgot about "old dependable"
I can't wait to get up in the mountains.
Amen, I came back with no chicken strips on the front without even trying. On my RT, riding that was was much more challenging.

Now if I could only get the strips of the rear tire, maybe a little harder out of the turns with the wheel up in the air :wtf

Phil Space
Springfield, VA
2007 K1200GT the road beast
2009 F800GS - My little adventure bike.
2007 F800ST - Her's, but I can ride it.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old May 29th, 2006, 1:33 pm
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Location: , IL, USA
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sgierl,

Thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts. I've got 700 miles on my GT now, and as someone also coming fron an RT, athough a '99 R1100RT, I agree with every one of your observations, although I haven't been on a trip that has been long enough to evaluate the seat and the knee position for me.

One thing that I do find is that I can't seem to shift the GT smoothly. On my RT, I could make nearly imperceptible upshifts to any gear...preload the shifter, partial clutch, etc. But shifting the GT smoothly is nearly impossible for me. I'm not missing any shifts, just can't seem to coordinate throttle/clutch the way I could on the RT. I know they are different machines with different characteristics, but I'm curious to hear your thoughts and those of others here. I've also experienced the choppy throttle that others have mentioned. The bike goes in for the first service this week. Maybe a software reload and throttle cable adjustment will help.

Congratulations on your new GT. Make you have many happy miles.

Bud
2006 K1200GT - Graphite
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old May 29th, 2006, 2:15 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gc916
sgierl,

One thing that I do find is that I can't seem to shift the GT smoothly. On my RT, I could make nearly imperceptible upshifts to any gear...preload the shifter, partial clutch, etc. But shifting the GT smoothly is nearly impossible for me. I'm not missing any shifts, just can't seem to coordinate throttle/clutch the way I could on the RT. I know they are different machines with different characteristics, but I'm curious to hear your thoughts and those of others here. I've also experienced the choppy throttle that others have mentioned. The bike goes in for the first service this week. Maybe a software reload and throttle cable adjustment will help.
I found that by adjusting the slack out of the throttle cable I was able to achieve much smoother shifts up the box ALMOST like I did on the KRS. I'm figuring that I now need to get a few more miles on the bike to properly bed down the new clutch and engine to finally achieve the smooth up changes that I'm used to from previous BMW bikes.

Until you do take it in for the service I DO recommend that you do try adjusting the cables.

Last edited by eljeffe; May 29th, 2006 at 2:19 pm. Reason: Fix quote
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