Author Topic: You can't go back.  (Read 999 times)

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Offlineomnione

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    You can't go back.
    « on: 2013-11-13 02:44:49 »

    Just had an interesting couple of days aboard the new water-cooled GS.



    It came about because I had to take my GTL1600 in to have the instrument assembly dried out and re-sealed , apparently the  panel is dismantled and then left overnight in a warm place to allow all the moisture out.


    I had to get from the dealers in Manchester to my home in Blackpool and back again, hence a need for transport, so Williams (the dealers) kindly loaned me a brand new (740 miles) GS for the trip.


    I (probably like a few others on this forum) had been intrigued by the photo's of the new water cooled R1200RT and with the upgraded electronics as well as the more powerful engine I had thought it might be worth a look when trade in time comes around for the GTL. All the toys so to speak and over 100kg's lighter. So the loan of the GS was a heaven sent opportunity to get a least a taste of the new water cooled R1200RT's power-plant.


    That weight was my only real complaint with my GTL  it is a bit unwieldy to get in and out of my garage, I have a car in there as well and the bike lives at the side of it and needs a fair bit of shuffling around to get it in place.  I have had the usual warranty issues with the bike namely handlebar switches and a couple of chrome badges lifting  but apart from that it has been very reliable, always starting first time and it has taken my wife and I on two European trips this year, one to the the Med coast in Spain and the other to Lake Garda via Germany with a return ride over the Alps both trips with no problems.


    Overall  I have been very, very pleased with it and yes mine can be a noisy tinker around town due to the transmission backlash when travelling slowly but if that's the only trade off for a feather weight clutch and silky gear-change then I will gladly take it.


    Anyway back to the ride home on the GS, it was dreadful, it started raining  and got quite windy,  I was feeling very exposed after getting off my GTL, it was not that I was being blown off it because the screen does quite a good job considering how small it is, it was just a completely different style of bike, but that engine was quite a revelation, at the usual motorway speeds in top gear the amount of instant acceleration available without changing down was remarkable I am not saying it has the same sense of urgency the GTL has but it's not far off. Top speed I was not able to tell but I don't think there would be any complaints on the German autobahns.


    Before the GTL I had owned an R1200RT  (the latest model) and you could always tell when it was working hard because as you opened the throttle to maintain speed say up an incline the engine used to vibrate more, this GS on the other hand did not do this but gave the impression of having much more power and torque than the printed specification suggests.


    The return to the dealers the next day was much better, the sun was shining and all was right with the world. I had got used to the different location of the gear-change so I could change gear better and more naturally and unlike my GTL there was zero i.e. no transmission backlash making town progress smooth and silent good job too because  it was still to some extent like being back on my old RT as the one thing it did not like was using too high a gear,  unlike the GTL which will happily go down to just above idle speed in any gear and just accelerate away without protest, so it was back to my unofficial minimum 20mph/2nd 30mph/3rd and so on, that keeps the revs around 2,500 and smooths the engine quite a bit. I was really starting to enjoy myself. I thought if the new RT rides like this it will be great especially if they soften the suspension a little compared to this GS which I am sure they will, it is supposed to be luxury tourer after all.


    Finally arrived in Manchester gave back the GS and collected my GTL after it's repair. Now here's the surprise, from the very first moment I sat on it I just felt, well, so happy and "at home", and that was before I started the engine, I was back in familiar territory  on this luxurious armchair of a motorcycle with both my feet firmly planted on the floor, unusual for me because being only 5'7" I am usually on tip toes on most bikes, I pressed the starter  and  all six cylinders instantly burst into life,  hardly seemed to turn over at all,  idling just as it should absolutely glass smooth, I slicked it into gear and joined the bustling Manchester traffic, turned up the radio and  that GS with its new water-cooled engine became just an instant distant memory.

    OfflineRTman10

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      Re: You can't go back.
      « Reply #1 on: 2013-11-13 08:40:18 »
      You are not alone.  My GTL has gone through the same things as yours. Switchgear changes etc , noisy gearbox. I also had occasion to go back to an RT for a short while in the summer having owned 3 of them prior to my K. No matter how good the new RT might be there is definitely no going back. Just looking at the press shots of it 2 up it looks cramped and definitely higher. My new GTLE is already on order for 1 March.

      OfflineBob S

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        Re: You can't go back.
        « Reply #2 on: 2013-11-13 12:52:01 »
        The new RT certainly does not look as if it has as good accommodation for rider and passenger as the 1600. Such a shame, I will have to keep it  :D
        2012 K1600GT-SE

        OfflineRTman10

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          Re: You can't go back.
          « Reply #3 on: 2013-11-13 14:59:42 »
          The new RT certainly does not look as if it has as good accommodation for rider and passenger as the 1600. Such a shame, I will have to keep it  :D
          [/quote
          Also just noticed it seemed to have gained about 20kg over the old one. Add the pannier and a top box and its heading towards GTL territory.

          OfflineBob S

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            Re: You can't go back.
            « Reply #4 on: 2013-11-13 20:50:25 »
            Yes, I saw that, a dry weight of 274kg, so only 45kg lighter than a GT.  The new GS gained 8kg over the outgoing GS, so I don't know how they have gained so much more weight on the RT. But it is still 27kg lighter than the Triumph Trophy, which is going to be one of its nearest competitors.
            2012 K1600GT-SE

            OfflineDJS

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              Re: You can't go back.
              « Reply #5 on: 2013-11-13 23:05:05 »
              Can't see the appeal. The 1600 is a stunning bike to look at (and ride) the RT  still has neither IMHO.

              Just enjoy it!

              Offlineomnione

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                Re: You can't go back.
                « Reply #6 on: 2013-11-13 23:46:47 »

                I have been having trouble replying to a pm from Jo about screen height. It's nothing personal so have decided to post my answer on the forum instead, his question was about looking through the screen instead of over it.








                Hi Jo,








                I must be quite long in the body because I can just see over the top lip of the screen  when it is fully lowered which is very useful when it's raining.
                 
                What is interesting is the screen produces more buffeting when raised fully than it does when lowered just a little, at least for me it does, but that's another joy of an electric screen, you can play with its position until you get it just right for you.  Well over 90% of my riding takes place looking through the screen which is great and suit me well because I wear a Shark Evoline helmet and this allows me to ride with it in the open face position nearly all year round which I much prefer and is great for visibility!








                There must be many many different after-market screens available and I would not let this small item stop you from owning such a magnificent motorcycle. One or two members on other web sites have cut screens themselves to get just the right height, (have a look on some of the Gold Wing sites for instructions)  but that's a bit too scary for me.








                One accessory you must buy are the crash bars made by Wunderlich, Nippy Normans does a safety package  (K1600GT/GTL  Part: WUN-41250-003) which combines the front and rear bars and save a few pounds (£'s) (I have no connection with this company other than as a satisfied customer.) I have had two opp's moments and the bars have saved damage on both occasions and I consider them well and truly self financing. In case your wondering both times the accidents happened manoeuvring in and out of  that  garage I mentioned in my post, with the bike being so easy to ride I sometimes get a bit to blasé when wheeling it about.








                If you are buying the facelift 2013 model then it is even more important to fit these bars look what happened to this poor chap. https://k6gtl.com/index/topic,540.msg3303.html#msg3303








                When on the road the moment the wheels start to turn the bike loses all it's bulk and weight and because of that very low seat height it feels very secure when stopping at lights or junctions and even the dreaded hill starts are much less intimidating. Riding big bikes does not get any easier than this machine and I have owned plenty over the last 45 years on two wheels.








                Sorry for going on and on but if you do have anymore questions feel free to ask.