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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been lurking on this site for about 2 months now and I feel confident that someone here can help me decide on my purchase.

The wife and I plan on retiring and traveling all over this country just like we did on a couple of Hondas, (350 and 500), in our youth. We put over 150 thousand miles on those two bikes in a little over 4 years. We both know that we felt very safe on those bikes and that they were very dependable. Now the kids are grown, and she is getting the itch to ride again.
How does the 1800 Goldwing compare to the 1200 LT?
1. Riding comfort for both rider and SO?
2. Dependability?
3. Touring, as in round trip, Ohio to California in 3-4 weeks?
4. I am 6'4", 300 lbs. Wife is 5'9" and around 160 lbs. That puts us over the weight limit on the Goldwing (435) before we even pack our bags! The 1200LT claims that it can safely carry 500 lbs. Any comments about the Goldwing being fit to carry up to 500 lbs?
5. Slow speed handling?
6. Due to physical limitations, I must have a reverse gear, heel/toe shifter, and ABS. I know that the Goldwing can be fitted with a heel/toe shifter. Can the BMW?
7. Pulling the front tire off the ground and burnouts are no longer a priority of mine. I need the safest, most dependable touring bike on the market today.

OK guys and gals, which one is it?

I am not trying to offend anyone, but could you only comment if you are knowledgeable about both bikes.
At $20,000+ I want to make sure that I get what I need for the next 100,000+ miles with the least amount of servicing.
 
G

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I'm watching this post VERY close, because if only for looks, and sophistication and need for a change, I like the BMW.
Maybe if I spent some time with one, I'd have a change of heart.
Other then that and until and if a win the lottery, and can afford both, I love my '03 Goldwing.
 

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jbivens544 said:
At $20,000+ I want to make sure that I get what I need for the next 100,000+ miles with the least amount of servicing.
Can't tell you much. I haven't ridden one much since 2001. My friend had a new one. I can tell you I had to work my tail off trying to keep the 1200 in any type of power zone. Shifting all the time compared to the Wing. If you're that tall, you must have long legs. That's a good thing for the BMW. It's a handfull at parking lot speeds. Reverse is much easier to use on the Wing. Accessories are much more plentiful for the Wing.

Take a look at the service schedule for the LT compared to the Wing. It will make you choke. They demand premo fuel for the Beemer. Make sure you have a couple of BMW dealers in your area. Not many around and it would be nice to have a choice in case one is miserable.

Good Luck! I doubt you could make a wrong decision.
 

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Dem beemers are chit, no dealer support, top heavy, rear ends explode, plus dey are some fugly looking bikes!

BTW... I have no idea WTF I am talking about, but I thought I would just throw my .02 cents in because I am the typical winger and have never ridden, nor owned any other motorcycle but the all mighty gold wing! So therefore all other motorcycles are junk! :roll:

All kidding aside though... you really need to ride both bikes to make an informed decision. Given your talleness, I believe you will find the Beemer more to your liking. :yes1:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
1800 vs 1200

The 435 lb. weight restriction on the Honda worries me the most. The BMW LT's weight limit is 495 according to their web site. I am also looking for a cruiser for around town and had considered a Kingpin by Victory. It has a weight limit of 535. What is it with the Goldwings 435 lb. limit? Does it have to do with the frame or the suspension?
I have to admit to liking the new motor and 6 speed tranny on the 1200LT. And it has a totally different suspension than the Goldwing.
A co-worker of mine rides his 2004 to work every day that it isn't snowing. He claims that the servicing schedule is minimal. He has 120,000 on it.
I have 5 Honda dealers within 30 miles and only 2 BMW dealers that close.
The old BMW's looked like they had suitcases strapped on the back. This new 07 LT looks like a trimmed down Goldwing.

My older cousin, (70 and still riding), claims that Harley owners trailer their bikes to the rally and sleep in RV's.
Goldwingers ride across several states to attend the rally and sleep in hotels.
BMW riders ride across the country to attend the rally and sleep in tents.

I fit in there somewhere between the Honda and BMW.

When I am new to a forum I do lots of searches to find out answers to common questions. That is why I have waited to post something that I couldn't find the answer too.
 

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The 435 lb. weight restriction on the Honda worries me the most.

What may be the majority of Wingers . . .

ignore the above restriction . . .

they have little choice.


BMW riders ride across the country to attend the rally and sleep in tents.

Many don't bother with the tents. Throw their bag/blanket on the ground and . .. .
 

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The 435 lb. weight restriction on the Honda worries me the most.
I suggest you get yourself a aftermarket (Traxxion) suspension set-up and don't ginve it another thought......on the wing of course. I looked at the 1200, and rode one, but it didn't feel like a big surefooted touring bike to me. PLus the maintenance and support network sorta scared me off. Plus it's 1200 and the wing is 50% more (1800)......an improtantn factor especially in two up riding. I know you can find comfort onthe wing, and I'm thining it will suit you BOTH better. But as suggested.....tyr them both somehow, and then you'll know. Good luck.
 
G

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I usually don't ride two up, but once when I did, I had a gal who was 170. I was 297 at the time. It felt alot different, but I had no problems.

The BMWis a great bike, but as with the Wing there are somethings riders don't care for and things they love. Both will do what you want with style and comfort - so- the best I can suggest is to make a list of what you need and want on a touring machine and see which bike fits or can be nade to fit the list.

Pat
 

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I am not proclaiming to be an expert in any way but I had the same decision to make that you are going through now. About a month ago it was time to trade in a couple of bikes and get THE curiser. I studied and looked and rode the K1200LT and the GL1800. I went with the GL1800 for the following reasons.

Slow Speed handling: The wing won here hands down. The BMW felt much more top heavy and at 5'10" was a bit of a streach for me. However you will want to ride one. At 6'4" you might find the Wing a bit cramped for your stature.

Service interval and cost: This was the biggie for me. In checking with the dealer I found that in the first 24K miles, if I had the dealer do all the service, the BMW would cost $2300 more. WOW I said. Keep in mind that this was what the price the dealer gave me and the recomended service intervals.

Reliability: The last BMW I had, not an old one mind you, was in the shop for repairs 6 times in the first 8K miles. These were not service checks these were real problems. It was an R bike and not a K bike but most of my faith was lost on the brand by then. The wing might have its problems as with any peice of machinery buy I have great failth in the brand.

In the real tight twistys and riding HARD I think the BMW will shine above the Wing but I must say that the Wing has impressed me quite a bit.

The only real advantage I even saw with the K1200LT was that the GPS system is miles ahead of the one on the GL1800. I am not saying that the Wing GPS is bad but it is VERY limited in what it will do.

I hope this helps some in your decision.

Cheers.
Marc
 

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a friend who is around 6'2" took the seat off his '05, had a local shop cut out some of the riders back rest section, moved it back a few inches, he is very comfortable now.

as mentioned, BMW dealerships are limited.
 

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Re: 1800 vs 1200

jbivens544 said:
The 435 lb. weight restriction on the Honda worries me the most. The BMW LT's weight limit is 495 according to their web site. I am also looking for a cruiser for around town and had considered a Kingpin by Victory. It has a weight limit of 535. What is it with the Goldwings 435 lb. limit? Does it have to do with the frame or the suspension?
I have to admit to liking the new motor and 6 speed tranny on the 1200LT. And it has a totally different suspension than the Goldwing.
A co-worker of mine rides his 2004 to work every day that it isn't snowing. He claims that the servicing schedule is minimal. He has 120,000 on it.
I have 5 Honda dealers within 30 miles and only 2 BMW dealers that close.
The old BMW's looked like they had suitcases strapped on the back. This new 07 LT looks like a trimmed down
My older cousin, (70 and still riding), claims that Harley owners trailer their bikes to the rally and sleep in RV's.
Goldwingers ride across several states to attend the rally and sleep in hotels.
BMW riders ride across the country to attend the rally and sleep in tents.

I fit in there somewhere between the Honda and BMW.

When I am new to a forum I do lots of searches to find out answers to common questions. That is why I have waited to post something that I couldn't find the answer too.
It's actually only 419 lbs gvw not 435 lbs gvw on '06 and '07 models.
 

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First thing......I've never riden the LT. I can offer some insight on the weight limits and size concerns. I too am tall, 6' 5" and 265# and my wife is 160#+. The weight limit in my opinion is the tire, not the suspension. We hook a Bushtec to it, total weight maybe 300# and tour all over the country. We are packed full. My wife won't leave nothin' home! We turn the suspension up to 23 and have never had a problem. 40 mpg, 20, 000 miles on front Bridgestone, 17,000 on rear Bridgestone, 40,000 miles on brake pads and that beautiful large engine doesn't even seem like it's workin' at all. We have pleny of room, I'm more comfortable on the Wing than in my wifes Tahoe. It's really a great touring bike. :D
 

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I have ridden the BMW many times not owned. My feelings are;

1- On both bike stock at your height the BMW will be more comfortable due to the higher seat height and stiffer seat. With your wife the firmer seat of the BMW will be less comfortable than the Wing.

2- Both bikes are dependable. Both have their quirks. The Honda Goldwing has been around 32 years and its dependability is second to none. Repair costs and parts ARE more expensive on the BMW.

3-Both bikes are fine touring bikes. A toss up.

4-People over load the Wing daily. If you do serious touring with two get the Traxxion Suspension set up and figure it will cost two grand.

5-Here I don't know . The Wing works fine but I had to get use to the weight at first

6-I have not seen a heel toe shifter on a BMW. But if it is not available a welder can rettofit one easily

7-Safest-Honda is the first with an airbag. Get the ABS. It is the most dependable tourer. You may need some seat,peg or bar modification for total comfort
 

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I've been riding all types of motorcycles for over 45 years. When I test rode a 1200 BMW I was shocked at how top heavy and hard to ride at slow speeds. That being said I guess you can get use to it, people who ride them love them. The Goldwing is king.
Capt Bob
 
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