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Thread: RT to GS Opinions

  1. #1
    Rich Pelton Rich's Avatar
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    RT to GS Opinions

    Greetings,

    I am looking for opinions on going from an RT to a GS. I have been seriously considering making the trade, and after visiting with my dealer this past weekend, I am even more inclined to just go for it.

    However, I want to hear from folks that have treaded these steps before, do you have any regrets? I know that some of you have both of these fine machines, how do you compare the two? I know that we aren't comparing apples to oranges, but is the GS a good all-around bike to have if you can only have one? My biggest concern is lack of wind protection to the head area, but I know there are some solutions to that problem. ($$$)

    I can't really say that I have been into the long distance touring thing, since I still have active kids at home, but I do get in an occasional run here and there that might be considered long distance. I have heard both sides of the fence, that the GS is as fine a long distance tourer as any other, and then some that say not. Yeah, I know, the RT is superior, and yes, I should have both, but that is not an option right now.

    My attraction to the GS is simple, we have tons of back roads that are just itching to be ridden and explored, and growing up in a farming community makes that attraction even more so. I would love to run up a gravel road, without the worry of tearing up plastic, and do all those other fun things I read about the GS guys doing with their bikes. And the endless supply of aftermarket goodies make me drool. Not to mention that the GS look just plain turns my crank. But I still want something I can hop on and make some serious miles down the pavement too.

    So what do you all think? I'm looking for serious answers before I make a decision I may regret later. I guess if I don't like it, I'll have to trade back for an RT down the road. Wait til I have to explain that to the wife, huh??

    Maybe I worry too much... Thanks for any input.

  2. #2
    screwtop
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    Rich,

    I've not made the RT to GS switch, but I do have experience with the RS to GS switch, which I would consider somewhat analagous. Anyway, I think you have already made your decision, you just need a little reassurance. You've outlined perfectly legitimate reasons for making the switch in your own post.

    The RT is pretty, but the GS wins (form follows function). You won't have any trouble resolving your wind protection concerns, either. Stop lamenting. It's counterproductive. Congratulations on the new GS.

  3. #3
    BMW MOA co-founder bmwdean's Avatar
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    Rich,

    I have all three -- R1150RT, R1200GS, and R1200RT.

    If you want dual purpose -- off road and on road -- the GS is for you. However, the RT offers much superior weather protection and a superb electrically adjustable windshield. It just depends on how you intend to use it. North Dakota has some pretty severe colder weather where the RT would shine. But if you hanker for those dirt roads, the GS is better.

    If I could only own one motorcycle, it would have to be an RT and I would forego the dirt roads. The vast majority of my riding is now on pavement. But that's me. You are you.
    Jeff Dean
    Tucson, Arizona, and Madison, Wisconsin
    Co-founder, 1972, of BMW MOA -- http://bmwdean.com/r1200rtw.htm
    2017 R1200RT, 2019 R1250RT, 1967 R60/2

  4. #4
    25-MPH NEXT 1OO MILES PacWestGS's Avatar
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    Luv my GS, but I want a new R12RT, if you are only going to ride street, buy the RT and save for the R12GS Adv. in two years.

    Russ
    Russ
    "If you took the time to really get to know me...you'd be wasting your time, because I'm exactly who you think I am"

    (Life comes at you pretty fast "Pay it Forward" - Have no regrets when the end happens)

  5. #5
    I bought a GSA to allow a one bike does all solution and so I sold two and bought one bike...a bike that is just amazing. in about one year I have put on about 10K on a mix of hwy and trails (65/35 mix) and it does all things, it depends largely upon what you really want. It eats up casual trail riding and will go over all kinds of obstacles and through mud and snow past the axles so that the heads become water cooled...lol. On the highway it cruised just wonderfully, I am sure that the regular GS with the taller top gear cruises a little easier still. Wind noise is kind of brutal so get some ear plugs and change the shield to suit your height.

    My wife is the only one that is not happy about the bike as she does not really like the GS as a passenger for anything other than a quick ride to pick up her bike...lol.

    A true 2 wheeled SUV is what it is. Treat it with respect on the trails and remember how heavy it is, and just enjoy it on the lanes and backroads too. Good luck

  6. #6
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
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    Your profile says it all, Rich

    You live in Killdeer, ND. The GS was made for your area. While I don't own a GS, I did grow up in ND, and rode Yamaha enduros as a kid growing up. I would think that the GS would meet all of your needs.

    If you do go to rallys, notice all the GS's that have come a long ways. I've come to the assumption that the GS is a real do-everything ride.
    -----------------------------------------
    Brad D. - Member #105766
    '77 R100RS - Black Beauty (big pipe, baby!)
    '94 R1100RS - Sylvia

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich
    Greetings,

    I am looking for opinions on going from an RT to a GS. I have been seriously considering making the trade, and after visiting with my dealer this past weekend, I am even more inclined to just go for it.

    However, I want to hear from folks that have treaded these steps before, do you have any regrets? I know that some of you have both of these fine machines, how do you compare the two? I know that we aren't comparing apples to oranges, but is the GS a good all-around bike to have if you can only have one? My biggest concern is lack of wind protection to the head area, but I know there are some solutions to that problem. ($$$)

    I can't really say that I have been into the long distance touring thing, since I still have active kids at home, but I do get in an occasional run here and there that might be considered long distance. I have heard both sides of the fence, that the GS is as fine a long distance tourer as any other, and then some that say not. Yeah, I know, the RT is superior, and yes, I should have both, but that is not an option right now.

    My attraction to the GS is simple, we have tons of back roads that are just itching to be ridden and explored, and growing up in a farming community makes that attraction even more so. I would love to run up a gravel road, without the worry of tearing up plastic, and do all those other fun things I read about the GS guys doing with their bikes. And the endless supply of aftermarket goodies make me drool. Not to mention that the GS look just plain turns my crank. But I still want something I can hop on and make some serious miles down the pavement too.

    So what do you all think? I'm looking for serious answers before I make a decision I may regret later. I guess if I don't like it, I'll have to trade back for an RT down the road. Wait til I have to explain that to the wife, huh??

    Maybe I worry too much... Thanks for any input.
    Always buy the one that turn's [YOUR] crank! You're going to love the gs, spend a little $$ to get comfortable and you will find there is no other bike which does everything so well! Plus it turns your crank!

  8. #8
    Danger: Keep Back 500 Ft FredRydr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich
    My biggest concern is lack of wind protection to the head area, but I know there are some solutions to that problem. ($$$)
    Well, maybe not what you'd expect.

    Rich,

    Read the current thread on Roadsters and windscreens before you sell the fared bike.

    Fred

  9. #9
    Rich Pelton Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr

    Read the current thread on Roadsters and windscreens before you sell the fared bike.

    Fred
    Thanks, Fred, I have been doing that, now you know why I am undecided as of yet.

  10. #10
    Rich Pelton Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by screwtop
    You won't have any trouble resolving your wind protection concerns, either.
    I have to ask, how was yours solved?

    Thanks to everyone for the responses, I'm readin and thinkin.

  11. #11
    MRMAICO
    Guest
    Rich has an open invitation to make the 2 hour drive to Mandan and ride mine, once he does I think he'll be sold.

    I bought a Givi screen for mine going by what other people my height said about theirs however when I got it I found it was too tall. After exchanging a few e mails with a great guy at Givi USA we determined that apparently somewhere along the line Givi decided to increase the height about 2 inches without even notifying the people at Givi USA. After finding this out they exchanged mine for an older, shorter one. I'm not sure what the current situation is as far as which one they are selling, or maybe they're selling both. I am pretty happy with it now, I do get a slight buffeting at higher speeds but I'm still playing around with different settings. It definately helps alot to reduce the wind on your arms.

    I am thinking about getting some of those "winglets" from the new R1200GSA, they may not be pretty but I bet they will help even more. You can see them in the pics below.

    Just let me know when you can make it down here Rich.

    Barry

    R1200GSA pictures

  12. #12
    Rich Pelton Rich's Avatar
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    I'll be taking you up on that, Barry! I was hoping to hook up with you for a ride earlier this fall but it just didn't happen. I need to get some deer hunting done with the boys, and then I will make it. Hopefully the weather holds for a while.

    I'll bring the RT and we'll do a swap and take a ride. I can't wait. Thanks.

  13. #13
    RIDERR1150GSADV
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    Talking

    Well, I made the switch from an RT to a GS by ways of an LT in between and I have to say that the GS is all the bike I need/want. Obviously there is less wind protection than on the LT/RT but I now have the feeling of riding a bike again too!
    The handling of the GS is unbelievable and I like the way it looks too. I did get he 'old' design R 1150 GS Adv SE model. After riding an R 1200 GS, I liked the way the 1150 handled the highway(better),the simpler electrical systems, brakes and the way it looks. I am not knocking the 1200, it is just my 0.02 Ct's.

  14. #14
    MRMAICO
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich
    I'll be taking you up on that, Barry! I was hoping to hook up with you for a ride earlier this fall but it just didn't happen. I need to get some deer hunting done with the boys, and then I will make it. Hopefully the weather holds for a while.

    I'll bring the RT and we'll do a swap and take a ride. I can't wait. Thanks.
    Sounds great Rich, but if it gets too cold to ride down here you could always drive the cage down and we can just take my bikes for a ride.

    Get your deer yet?

    Barry

  15. #15
    Rich Pelton Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrmaico
    Get your deer yet?
    Yep! I'll get a hunting thread going when I get a minute. My oldest son still has one to get to finish off our season.

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