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Thread: Tired of battling my K1300GT-boy did I blow the test drive?

  1. #1
    Muddyspokes muddyspokes's Avatar
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    Tired of battling my K1300GT-boy did I blow the test drive?

    Rant or whine-call it either one?

    I?ve been riding this new to me K1300GT for 6 months...with just under 12k miles on it, it is hardly broken in?
    Did 60 miles each way to visit a friend today-freeway and surface streets?
    Could not get the suspension set to match the highway conditions?seemed like invisible bumps jammed me-(setting comfort 1 helmet)--like a gut punching spine pump. Just can not see how anything other then a complete revalve on the suspension could fix the dampening or rebound.
    The bike cuts a turn when I lean into it?but most of the time?60-70mph feels fast?and I don?t want to hit something the bike can?t absorb..I?m over 60 after all.
    New Michelin P2?s front and rear? 36/38 psi

    My Heli bar order came today?but I?m too discouraged to open the box and do the installation.?
    Did I buy the wrong bike for me?
    The seat allows me to settle forward building a heat until I find myself against the tank?.fine until the road deals you something the suspension can?t handle?
    So now you have heat plus a crunch..not pleasant?.am I the only one?
    And then there is the slow speed heavy maneuvering you have to deal with while parking or stop and go?.?certainly not and F800GS that I?m used too?or my FZ1.

    I thought this was to be my Interstate cruiser?

  2. #2
    Registered User dancogan's Avatar
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    Muddy,

    I'll offer my thoughts for what they're worth. I ride a K1600 and have found some of the same discomfort you mention. The bumps in the pavement, both on city streets and highways are especially prevalent here in Michigan. I originally thought the the Comfort setting on the bike would be best, but that is not the case. Comfort works fine on good, smooth surfaced interstate, but not so much on pavement with frost heaves and cracks. The Comfort setting is too soft to absorb those jolts. Instead I use the sport setting which tightens up the suspension and allows it to work better over sharp bumps.

    Regarding slow speed maneuvering, it's a much bigger bike and won't handle like you F800, as you've found out. My K1600 is more of a handful at slow speeds than most other bikes I've ridden other than my R1200CLC (long gone). It's important to stay off the front brake at slow speed, if you haven't already found that out; that's about all the advice I'm competent to give.
    Dan

  3. #3
    Back in the Saddle mcmxcivrs's Avatar
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    On my K1200GT, I find the comfort setting too soft most of the time. I typically use the Normal setting. I have just done some ergonomic modifications to it; I installed Wunderlich Bar risers and foot peg lowering kits to improve the seating position. I have a Sargent seat on it, but found like you, that I tended to slip forward on it. I added a 1/2: of foam to it and reshaped it to be flatter (shaved the foam down to be nearly nothing at the rear edge). Its much better now in that regard. I don't notice heat issues, but then I live in a cold climate.

    As for the handling, I have no issues with mine at slow speeds. I actually find it to be quite easy to manage. I did have some handling issues that I traced to loose front ball joints, (apparently not uncommon on the 12GT) but after replacing them, it handles beautifully again. Mostly low speed handling is a matter of personal learning and technique I think.
    Ed Miller, Calgary, AB
    2008 K1200GT, 2009 F800GS
    I can't wait to retire and have a fixed income. The one I have now is always broke.

  4. #4
    Muddyspokes muddyspokes's Avatar
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    Dan, Ed
    Thank you both for the comebacks.... I agree that the slow speed handling is a matter of technique and one that almost requires you to be aggressive rather then passive..

    I added the Heli Bar risers yesterday and felt an immediate improvement. Less weight on the bars. I also added a strap on ATV seat pad by Colemen- $25 at Walmart...just to experiment with. Double folding it near the tank changed the angle of seating. The two mods together were helpful... I guess a custom seat is my future...possibly a peg lowering kit as well.

    Dan, which peg lowering kit did you go with?

    Our club is riding and camping this weekend. I plan to adjust the ESA with a load on the bike then.

    Muddy

  5. #5
    Registered User dancogan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by muddyspokes View Post
    ...Dan, which peg lowering kit did you go with?Muddy
    I don't have a peg lowering kit, despite a 33 1/2-34" inseam. Instead I use the Ilium highway pegs for long rides and find them a very comfortable alternative to keeping my feet on the factory pegs.
    Dan

  6. #6
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    I've got a wedge K-GT plus 4 other BMWs and a Honda that I ride.

    The K wedge is sprung like a brick (if you plan 150 mph or better speed capability at that weight, better to err on the hard side if you want to stay healthy) and your comments are right on. You will indeed need to redo the suspension if you want anything resembling a supple ride. If it were me, Iwouldn't waste the $ on that model.

    My K-GT is my least liked BMW so gets little use.

    You want comfort- ditch any K bike and get an RT- mega improvement. Demos available at any dealer.

  7. #7
    Muddyspokes muddyspokes's Avatar
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    So true Racer7

    After further eval from freindly experienced riders---we agreed it is sprung for a much heavier weight then my 200 pds.... it does improve loaded down..but not by much...and forget the saddle.
    Respring and revavle $1500...not ready for that.

    Thanks for the come back.

  8. #8
    Muddyspokes muddyspokes's Avatar
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    Latest news...while getting an opinion on suspension adjustment from another K bike owner...we discovered the rear shock has been leaking.. Oddly it only leaks while on the side stand and not the center stand when parked in my garage...a bled out shock has no chance of working well...

    Talked to a couple of local dealers...they all suggested oem new replacement..cost about $3400. Ted Porter quoted me $900 for a Wilbur. Finally located a shop in San Carlos CA that will rebuild and recharge the oem-cost $285!

    Seems like a round about way to have made this discovery---but I did.
    Thanks for all you input.

  9. #9
    Registered User lvermiere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by muddyspokes View Post
    Rant or whine-call it either one?

    I?ve been riding this new to me K1300GT for 6 months...with just under 12k miles on it, it is hardly broken in?
    Did 60 miles each way to visit a friend today-freeway and surface streets?
    Could not get the suspension set to match the highway conditions?seemed like invisible bumps jammed me-(setting comfort 1 helmet)--like a gut punching spine pump. Just can not see how anything other then a complete revalve on the suspension could fix the dampening or rebound.
    The bike cuts a turn when I lean into it?but most of the time?60-70mph feels fast?and I don?t want to hit something the bike can?t absorb..I?m over 60 after all.
    New Michelin P2?s front and rear? 36/38 psi

    My Heli bar order came today?but I?m too discouraged to open the box and do the installation.?
    Did I buy the wrong bike for me?
    The seat allows me to settle forward building a heat until I find myself against the tank?.fine until the road deals you something the suspension can?t handle?
    So now you have heat plus a crunch..not pleasant?.am I the only one?
    And then there is the slow speed heavy maneuvering you have to deal with while parking or stop and go?.?certainly not and F800GS that I?m used too?or my FZ1.

    I thought this was to be my Interstate cruiser?
    I thought the same thing and mu 07 12 Gt was a great highway cruiser. Once the miles piled up this is what I found:

    Anything less than 40mph it felt like the tires went flat. NOT!!..

    The ball joints were shot. Sold the pig for a loss and happy for it.

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