Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks


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dwight007fchr
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Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:55 am



I thought a discussion of the "lessons we have learned" while owning a Goldwing may help others from making the same mistakes. So, maybe a general discussion of our personal stories of problems we encountered with our Wings, mostly through our own poor thinking.

For example, the other day I decided to pull my 83 GL1100 up on her centerstand. The only problem is that the pavement was sloping a bit downhill toward the back of the Wing. So, I got her up on the centerstand with no problem, but when I was ready to move her forward and off the centerstand, I found that gravity was fighting mightily hard against my efforts. I typically just sit on the seat and do the "lung forward" movement to get her to go forward enough to pop off the centerstand. Well, with her facing up-grade, she had very little interest in leaving that centerstand. I am only 5-8", and dont have the legs to just sit there and push with my feet, so I got off to ponder my situation. I was tempted to push on the handlebars while standing beside my Wing, but felt it would be too easy for her to tip over while trying. I ended up getting back on and sitting down and trying the momentum "rearward then forward" thing, and after a few tries, I finally convinced her to slide off the centerstand. In hind sight, I am thinking that maybe the best way would have been to grab the side bars that we use to put her on the centerstand and just lift up and push forward. What is the best way from the experts in here?

Another hard lesson was when I pulled into a parking spot that was facing downhill, and had a sidewalk curb to the front. My 83 Wing has no Reverse gear, and so it turned into another embarrassing situation. She is just way too big to balance and push backwards upgrade, so its either just cranking her up and bouncing forward over the sidewalk and past the elderly women and children and back to the pavement, or getting someone coming out of Golds Gym to help give me a push up-hill. There was no Golds Gym there, so I think I had to settle for getting help from one of the old ladies on the sidewalk.

Finally, one last "dumb mistake": I was using my pull-behind trailer one day, and had stopped in a shady spot in my brother's yard that had a very slight downward grade. I had typically been getting into the habit of popping her into Neutral before turning off the key so that I dont have to click-around looking for neutral when I go to start her. So, I put her in neutral, turned the key off, and got off. A few minutes later I looked over and saw my Wing slowly moving forward, and I did not have enough time to rush over and catch her. She eased herself forward and then plumped over into the grass, resting on the crash bar. That was my first try and doing the "Goldwing Lift", in the reverse-squat position. It worked fine, but it is very worrisome thinking that lifting just a hair too much and she will flip over to the other side.....that is very worrisome. Again, another good time to have an old lady stand on the other side just in case.

Looking forward to hearing some other stories so I can avoid making more mistakes. Some stories and tips on driving in perilous conditions, such as what to do when you have a tire blow-out at high speed, or what happened when your timing belt decided to break, or what to do when you come around a curve and have a deer standing in your path......anything from your experience would surely help others when encountering these situations.

Getty Up, Hi Ho Silver, Away!



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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby bustedwing » Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:17 am

Glad to see you have survived the school of hard knocks so far, but it is a constant lesson. The situations change all the time, that is why we can talk about what has happened to us, but it may happen to you in a different way. The parking situations, it would be a calibrated eyeball before you got into that position. If you can't get out, don't go in. At least leave room to make a u-turn so you are facing out. The slip off the side stand crank the handlebars the opposite way. Once it has fallen down and you are picking it back up when you get to the balance point you can feel it so it would be rare to flip it all the way over again. But it's normal to be gunshy about it, just feel the weight. Ya I've done it, three times that I can remember But not since I have switched to a trike. I still have to watch situations like your parking situations, if the angle is too steep the reverse won't work to pull the trike out of the hole. So I have to do a calibrated glance where I am going to park , and do the same as you, figure on having enough room to do a u-turn to face out or find another spot. Thank you for opening this discussion, ride safe.
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dwight007fchr
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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:35 pm

BustedWing.......Thanks for the feedback.....yep, "if you cant get out then dont get in".....thats a good one to remember.

I also play it double safe in parking lots by seeking out the highest point......just in case those Murphey Gremlins get inside my Wing and decide to screw with the battery or starter........so I can just turn on the key, slide her up into 2nd and roll start her. If that doesnt work, I usually have a pair of jumpers in the side box.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby bustedwing » Fri Aug 02, 2013 7:31 pm

That's a great thought too, and something I haven't had to practice at yet. Thanx.
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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby tom84std » Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:25 am

Not exactly the same category, but I know I'm not the only one. I've been riding motorcycles in general probably 45 years. Goldwings since about 2001. On all my previous bikes I had a seating position in which my feet were placed forward of the rest of me. I've had factory bikes, choppers, ugly homade things, but of course the Wing is a different animal altogether. The ideal seating position for me would involve removing the cylinders. The alternative of course is to mount pegs to the crash bars, but that makes me feel as if I'm getting a pelvic exam, and I'm a guy. That position does keep the nether regions dry and sweat free on hot Texas days. So I sit for miles and miles with my feet directly behind that big engine wishing I could place my feet just about where those cylinders live. There's nothing to be done about it so I just ride and be thankful for that big powerful engine. Sitting there in my way.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sat Aug 03, 2013 7:14 am

Tom8......Funny. Now dont tell me that you have tried easing yourself backwards to the passenger seat where you can kick your legs up and rest your feet on the cylinders/crash bar. Maybe get a handlebar extension and it might work.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby bustedwing » Sat Aug 03, 2013 9:30 am

Tom you are right and not the only one. But after a few years you get used to the"pelvic exam"position. By the way, that was quite the mental vision, sitting on the passenger seat, long handlebars, etc. Someone will come up with that.
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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:25 pm

bustedwing wrote:Tom you are right and not the only one. But after a few years you get used to the"pelvic exam"position. By the way, that was quite the mental vision, sitting on the passenger seat, long handlebars, etc. Someone will come up with that.



Bustedwing........Got my sketches in one hand while running to the Patent Office. Will have a handlebar extension kit ready to sell in a couple days. Right.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby seabeechief » Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:21 pm

This is one of those "I've seen this movie" threads. Yep, either we have done it or we are going to do it. I do the mental calibration thingy on a regular basis. I've become pretty good at remembering to put her in first gear if I'm pointing downhill just a little bit. And for the most part, I try to back into a parking space whenever I can regardless of what I'm driving. To me, it is easier to back into a parking space in a car or truck than it is to pull in forward, especially if it is a tight spot. And then, I can ALWAYS see what is coming when it's time to leave. That's just me.

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dwight007fchr
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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:41 pm

seabeechief wrote:This is one of those "I've seen this movie" threads. Yep, either we have done it or we are going to do it. I do the mental calibration thingy on a regular basis. I've become pretty good at remembering to put her in first gear if I'm pointing downhill just a little bit. And for the most part, I try to back into a parking space whenever I can regardless of what I'm driving. To me, it is easier to back into a parking space in a car or truck than it is to pull in forward, especially if it is a tight spot. And then, I can ALWAYS see what is coming when it's time to leave. That's just me.

Chief



SeabeeCHIEF......My dad is a WWII Seabee.....and he agrees with you. You are right......we "have done it or are going to do it", eventually.

Im hoping to hear from anyone who has had a timing belt blow out, and what happened, and how they handled the situation......and other valuable lessons learned from close-calls. Im sure we have alot of Wingers who have some good information/stories to share.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dingdong » Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:12 am

I have had a belt break on my 76. The left belt went out on the hwy at about 60 mph. Being the left belt (points side) the engine instantly quit. Nothing to do but pull over to the shoulder. I had no clue as to what was wrong so naturally I kept trying to re-start the engine. Eventually I had to call for a tow truck to get the bike home. We were about 100 miles from home at the time so my insurance paid for the tow charge. Damage was limited to just two valves. I am a firm believer in the "if you don't have service records, change the belts theory". That was the first thing I did when I purchased the 1500.
Tom

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:27 am

dingdong wrote:I have had a belt break on my 76. The left belt went out on the hwy at about 60 mph. Being the left belt (points side) the engine instantly quit. Nothing to do but pull over to the shoulder. I had no clue as to what was wrong so naturally I kept trying to re-start the engine. Eventually I had to call for a tow truck to get the bike home. We were about 100 miles from home at the time so my insurance paid for the tow charge. Damage was limited to just two valves. I am a firm believer in the "if you don't have service records, change the belts theory". That was the first thing I did when I purchased the 1500.


dingdong.......Good story. I had heard others say that when the belt breaks, that the engine will seize up, thus putting the bike into an instant skid......and at that speed, that could be catastrophic, especially while going around a curve. Good to hear it did not cause a wreck in your case.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby bstig60 » Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:36 pm

bustedwing wrote:Tom you are right and not the only one. But after a few years you get used to the"pelvic exam"position. By the way, that was quite the mental vision, sitting on the passenger seat, long handlebars, etc. Someone will come up with that.

I am new to Goldwings. A little background: I bought the bike and only had it a week before going on a 2500 mile trip. All I had time for was to change all the fluids, check all the maintenance items, pack and take off. I thought the highway boards were going to be terribly uncomfortable, but I found myself riding with them and being reasonably comfortable. At first it was just getting the boots out there in the air to cool off my feet and then putting them back on the pegs, but as the miles went by I found it more comfortable using the highway pegs. I have a set of Markland highway boards on the bike.
Bill

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sat Aug 10, 2013 7:04 am

bstig........Thats the first thing I had to do when I got my 83 1100......had to take off those large chrome highway boards (driver and passenger), as they were right in the way of my feet when I wanted to plant my feet down on the road for stability. Being only 5-8", I need as much space as possible to contact the road when coming to a stop. Maybe I can reinstall when I become an expert rider.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby bstig60 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 9:32 am

I'm 6'2", at least I think I still am. I tried moving mine back about 6 inches and found it was really uncomfortable, so I put them back where they were. I am not sure, but it looks like the frame is longer or the engine set further forward on the 1500 than the 1100, so the highway pegs set further forward and are not in the way.
Bill

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby jhbates2000 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:59 am

Tom...
I was in ur position with the whol hwy peg thing. I wasnt sure if I wanted my legs all spread out while cruising down the road. I decided to bite the bullet and went down to the local honda dealer to see what they had in stock. I got a set of after market bolt on pegs for $20. It took a couple of rides to get used to them but now I wouldnt trade them for anything cause on those 95 degree days when the heat index is over 100 its nice cruising down the road letting a good breeze keep the old family jewels cool.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:28 am

JHBates.......Just dont kick back so much and prop your boots too far out past the fairings and let a bumble bee dart up your pant leg, and have a not-so-friendly visit with the family jewels.....that wouldnt be so cool.

ha ha.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby littlebeaver » Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:30 am

I had a hard to once that I can remember,, I had my Nomad and and I had parked it in a parking lot that was slightly sloped but not too bad, just slightly slope down, when I went to back her up, I had a really hard time backing her up due to the weight of the bike and no reverse...Oh man it was tough,,some dude saw me straining with it and came to help,,I was so embarrassed because I'm not a small dude, 6' 250 so it was quite embarrassing because I put myself in that position...So don't do that.. :lol:

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby landisr » Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:56 am

Re: parking.. When I'm ready to pull into a spot at WW or wherever, I be sure to 1) park slightly to the right of the center of the spot so that when the bike is leaned over on the sidestand it is better centered to minimize door dings. A lot of people just don't think or care when they swing their doors open. And worse, some times I have been (comfortable) with the bike position only to return and find that one of the adjacent cars had left and the 'new neighbor' was lazy about where they put their car because of all the 'extra room' thanks to that little ol' mopickle.

Also, 2) I make sure I only pull in far enough to be safely out of traffic. I want the bike as quickly visible as possible to others cruising for an open spot. If you pull further in or worse all the way in, some already-distracted shopper will see what appears to be an opening and start to pull in and possibly realize too late that there is a motorcycle. Even a slight nudge is enough to push it off the sidestand.... But of course they would leave a note with their insurance info and an apology----

However, I do like the idea of backing in. I'll have to remember that for next time. Thanks.

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby thrasherg » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:56 am

dingdong wrote:I have had a belt break on my 76. The left belt went out on the hwy at about 60 mph. Being the left belt (points side) the engine instantly quit. Nothing to do but pull over to the shoulder. I had no clue as to what was wrong so naturally I kept trying to re-start the engine. Eventually I had to call for a tow truck to get the bike home. We were about 100 miles from home at the time so my insurance paid for the tow charge. Damage was limited to just two valves. I am a firm believer in the "if you don't have service records, change the belts theory". That was the first thing I did when I purchased the 1500.


I was expecting you to say that you took the right hand timing belt off, put it on the left side (so the points operate) and then rode it home as a 2 cylinder wing!! All done at the side of the road!! Now that would be a story!! :lol: :lol:

Gary

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:58 pm

Gary Thresherg.......Yep, doing the roadside repair and hobbling home on 2 cylinders would be a good story.......or maybe using some strong parachord to make a temporary timing belt. But I tell you, I dont think I could do a timing belt change on the side of the road.....thats crazy talk.....unless you have half your shop tools in your pull-behind.

Dingdong.....just curious here......when your timing belt broke, did the engine freeze up, causing your rear tire to skid? If so, did you dip the clutch fast to eliminate the skid?

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby jhbates2000 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:48 pm

Dwight,
Lets hope that doesnt happen as I am alergic to bees. Also it would be a little akward to have to drop my pants on the side of the road to give myself a shot in the thigh with an epipen!

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby redial » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:31 am

I havent had it happen to me on a mc, but I have had the timing gear break in a Toyota (my last Toyota, ever) cruising down that highway at about 65MPH (about 110Km/h). Bang! Followed by a rapid Zzzzzzzzzz as the pistons and valves met! Called the local AA man who slack towed me (with a rope) to the next town, with the speedo indicating 55MPH! It was a bit scarey, more so than when the timing gear went.

I had to have the engine rebuilt, so that was a few dollars that could have been spent on better things. The moral of this story is dont let the timing gear break!

There was no skidding, no lock up of the wheels, just the sound of money going down the drain.
Len in Kapunda

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby dwight007fchr » Sat Aug 31, 2013 6:28 am

JHBates.....funny....yep, no need for you to drop trow as a result of that bumble bee, and imagine the shock you will give all those Pilgrim women on their journey to the promised land.......what ever happened to that "promised land"?

Redial.......just the sound of money going down the drain.....yep.....as ole Ross Perot described it, "that giant sucking sound south of the border".

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Re: Goldwing Lessons of Hard Knocks

Postby Mag » Sat Aug 31, 2013 10:08 am

Due to a problem with my knee, I have always had highway pegs on any bike I had. I was lucky to never have a bee fly up my pant leg, and good thing since I am allergic to bee stings also, but never had the problem, could be because I also usually where chaps and such. I had more issues flying down the road with the wind wings open because of it being a bit hot, and then a bee or yellow-jacket coming through and nailing me in my stomach, painful for sure.




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