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Thread: How smooth is your K16 vs. RT

  1. #1
    Sufferin Boothead
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    How smooth is your K16 vs. RT

    After years of owning different R12RT's and now a 2017 with only 6,000 km on it, I'm pondering a K1600b. The big reason is that as I leave my 50's, I'm finding I want a smooth easy ride and my new RT isn't providing the comfort I hoped for. I'm curious if any other 'R' owners have made the switch and if they find the 'K' smoother or easier on their bodies.

    Thanks in advance for your replies
    Last edited by Sufferin_Boothead; 10-25-2020 at 12:05 AM.

  2. #2
    Rich Pelton 2014 R1200GSW Rich's Avatar
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    This won't help you a bit, but at 60 I'm much more concerned about the weight than the smoothness. Those K1600's are heavy.

    But I am kind of a wimp...

  3. #3
    Booger Man boogerman's Avatar
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    I started with a 2013 K1600GTL and traded in on a 2018 R1200RT as I wanted something a little lighter. The two bikes are somewhat the same but yet again different. After a year an half and 14000+ miles I traded the RT for a 2018 K16GTL. I just never got use to the RT engine/transmission. The K16 has more power & torque & is soooo smooth compared to the RT. The RT is no slouch in the power department but itís not a K. The RT is definitely lighter and is a little steadier on the HWY. The K just seems to fit me better in the rider comfort area. The K can be a hand full at slow speed but once a gets moving that all goes away. I am in my late 60ís 6í tall and a petite 210 in the weight department. Take one of the K1600 models for ride at the dealer see what you think. These are my own personal views so I hope this helps you. Watch out the big K can be a real temptress .

  4. #4
    Registered User
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    St.Louis, MO
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    R1200RT vs K1600

    As a current owner of both bikes I enjoy both for different reasons. The RT is ~200 pounds lighter and a lot of fun in the curves of our Ozark mountains. It is my go to bike for shorter rides and when I need a quick smile in these difficult times. I purchased the K1600 for cross country touring and it does not disappoint. I added a Russel Day Long saddle with a backrest It is so smooth and comfortable for longer days but is still fun in the curves. It handles better than any 800 pound bike ought to. When stopped you are aware of the weight but as soon as you accelerate that is no longer an issue. I am 6 foot, 190 pounds and late 60ís. I dropped it once when a sudden wind came out of nowhere but I was able to right it alone
    The Phantom

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by boogerman View Post
    I started with a 2013 K1600GTL and traded in on a 2018 R1200RT as I wanted something a little lighter. The two bikes are somewhat the same but yet again different. After a year an half and 14000+ miles I traded the RT for a 2018 K16GTL. I just never got use to the RT engine/transmission. The K16 has more power & torque & is soooo smooth compared to the RT. The RT is no slouch in the power department but itís not a K. The RT is definitely lighter and is a little steadier on the HWY. The K just seems to fit me better in the rider comfort area. The K can be a hand full at slow speed but once a gets moving that all goes away. I am in my late 60ís 6í tall and a petite 210 in the weight department. Take one of the K1600 models for ride at the dealer see what you think. These are my own personal views so I hope this helps you. Watch out the big K can be a real temptress .
    Interesting - I spoke to a guy yesterday that had traded his RT for his second GTL (traded the first one for the RT); said he had taken a trip to NH (from FL) last year and felt he was being blown all over the highway by trucks, etc., so he went back to the GTL.
    He wasn't a big guy, maybe 5'7 and 160#, so that may have had something to do with it.

    THx,
    Kevin L

  6. #6
    Booger Man boogerman's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by motorref View Post
    Interesting - I spoke to a guy yesterday that had traded his RT for his second GTL (traded the first one for the RT); said he had taken a trip to NH (from FL) last year and felt he was being blown all over the highway by trucks, etc., so he went back to the GTL.
    He wasn't a big guy, maybe 5'7 and 160#, so that may have had something to do with it.

    THx,
    Kevin L
    In my mind all bikes get blown around on the Interstate. 80,000 lb truck 1000 lb bike. One good point that the RT did better was you can take your hands off the handle bars for a lot longer. I once did about 10 miles with the RT The GTL you need to correct it more often....some GTLs more than others

  7. #7
    Registered User
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    Apples and oranges

    Having had both, I will say, out of the box that the 6 is far smoother than the boxer and has tons more power in reserve:
    HOWEVER:
    1. The RT is lighter
    2. I could get mine on the center stand
    3. The fairing provides superior protection

    Smoothness is quite subjective, having had my share of rough singles that could put you to sleep with all the vibration. The RT is by NO means a shaker, it is simply less smooth than the 6.

    On the road, on my 6, I have often found myself in third gear at interstate speeds and unaware until I looked at the gear indicator or the tach.

    The problem is that it is so Go**amn heavy, to the point that I can't get it up on the center stand. Maneuvering in tight spaces is a bitch to say the least, and I am not a small man; (6'2" 240 lbs).

    Out on the highway, it is a magic carpet that will take you from NY to LA without breaking a sweat.

    If your dealer wants to sell you one, take it for a weekend not just a test ride on the superslab. Then make your best decision. Best! 3hawks

  8. #8

    2012 k1600 gtl

    I'm 62 5'10". Still using my stock seat with 75k mi. now on the clock. I've done a 1150 mi. day and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. The k16 engine is so smooth that a few times leaving small towns I've forgotten to check the gear I'm in, only to look down very surprised to see I'm doing 70 in 4th gear and didn't even realize it. BTW...you get quite used to the weight of this bike within the first couple thousand miles.

  9. #9
    ebullient!
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    I've had five boxers over the years and now the GA. The K1600 engine is flat-glass-of-water smooth. Really, that engine is amazing. The boxers are often not tuned correctly. For a boxer engine, using a Twinmax is essential to balance the intakes. This is where I managed to tune the twin perfectly, and they will sing if tuned perfectly.

  10. #10
    Registered User
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    I do not have a problem getting my GT on the center stand at 5'10 and 200 lbs. But I did come from a heavier HD Ultra Limited.

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