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    I got back into riding a few years ago with the purchase of a “96” 1100RT. This bike had not been loved. I put a lot into it and have enjoyed riding it but now it’s time to move on. I’ve decided to go with a GS. I love the whole dual sport idea. I saved, planned and found a 2005 1200GS that was within my price range. Excitedly I took it out for an extended test ride. Within a half hour my neck was on fire and my arm getting numb. I was just plain uncomfortable. With this pain I knew there was no way I could do long rides. Is my dream of a GS and exploring the fire roads of North Carolina over? Perhaps bar-back risers would save the dream or maybe just stick with an RT which is a wonderful machine.


    I’m with you… nothing works for me like an RT!


    Look at your own avatar photo.  Do you sit on the GS the same way you’re sitting on the RT?  Arms a little bent, hands and wrists straight to the levers?  If not, could the GS be adjusted to fit you?

    Also, the GS has a lot less wind protection.  Is that what’s stressing you?  There are bigger windshields you can mount on the GS, but of course, if you drop the bike in the dirt, you could easily break such a screen. 


    As humans, we’re all shaped differently.  Bikes are made one way, and must be adjusted to fit the individual.  If you have enough inseam to seat a GS then your arms are long enough too.  Your grip on the bars should be comfortable enough so you’re not stressing your neck.  You should be able to ride with your knees gripping the tank and your arms relatively light on the grips.  Adjust accordingly and all should be well.  There’s a reason why they call the boxer GS the Swiss Army knife of bikedom. 

    I rode the new RT recently, and after getting used to its handling, which in the twisties is not as handy as the GS, I liked it very much.  I rode a ’96 RT once and couldn’t wait to get back on my GS.  Adjust it and you’ll be a happy rider.  Oh, the shocks aren’t clapped out, are they?  I had to change the shocks in both my GS boxers. 



    I went from an RT (2004) to a GTL to a GS (2013)

    I loved the RT and thought the GTL would be even better.  But it was too big and heavy and I hated those five point turns especially in gravel.

    I have found the GS to be nimble and comfortable.  Maybe you need to make some adjustments, seat height, bar height, pegs, etc.

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