GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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Gunnar Már
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Location: Reykjav�k, Reykjavik, Iceland
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GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Postby Gunnar Már » Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:53 am

Hi all

I have a 1983 GL 1100 Interstate fittet with a 1986 1200 motor and I finally have done everything I want to do with it, fixed all the little gremlins here and there, new tires, new brakes, carb overhaul, new bearing evrywhere, fittet a new radio with helmet speaker output and all is perfect, but I really got the itch these days :twisted: because I found a really good looking 1986 1200 SEI with only 49900 miles on it. This bike is most likely the only one here in Iceland :o
How big is the different in those two bikes? does someone know?
We often ride two up and I really would love the self adjusting suspension, I always just ride mine with almost maximum air pressure because I have to go to the gas station do adjust it so when I´m alone it´s pretty hard ride compair to when we are two on it.
There are more things I like on the SEI like the intercom and the cruise control, but then I probably have to start all over again new tires, brakes, timing belts and all of those little things.
Please tell me to forget it (I probably won´t). :roll:

Best to all of you and greetings from Iceland

Gunnar Már

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84 GL 1200 I

Re: GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Postby virgilmobile » Thu Jul 17, 2014 2:36 pm

As I remember,the SEI is a fuel injected engine....Basically the same bike mechanically but with added stuff...The added stuff seemed to be fine but there have been issues with the charging system...If there kept in clean condition and no extra electrical load is put on the bike,they were OK....
Add some extra lights and corroded connections will kill the stator....

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Gunnar Már
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2012 5:11 pm
Location: Reykjav�k, Reykjavik, Iceland
Motorcycle: Honda Gl 1500 Aspengade 1992

Re: GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Postby Gunnar Már » Fri Jul 18, 2014 5:43 am

Thanks a lot for these info, but is there great different between the handling of a GL 1100 and a GL 1200?
The 1200 is outweighed by the 1100 but is it harder to handle?
And yes the SEI has a fuel injected engine and from what I have read it is alright silk smooth and no hesitation and quite reliable.

Best to all

Gunnar Már

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1981 GL1100 Interstate

Re: GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Postby HawkeyeGL1200 » Fri Jul 18, 2014 6:20 am

I'm probably the only person in the world that feels this way, but I prefer how the GL1100 handles over how the GL1200 handles. Having ridden both models of Goldwings, I feel the 1100 handles more to my way of riding. If you ride on a lot of straight well paved roads, the 1200 is a superior ride and more comfortable (especially 2-up). If you like to get off the main roads and ride on what I call "back roads" or in the country, I prefer the handling of the 1100 for that kind of riding.

The 1100 I rode was a 1981 model, which always felt to me like it needed another gear, as I was riding at 4000 RPMs most of the time, where my 1200 would be running at almost 1000 RPMs lower in "overdrive". The fuel economy was about the same. If the 1100 I rode had been a 1983 model, with the "better" final gear ratio, I would have taken it over the 1200 any day. Since you have a 1200 engine in an 1100 frame, it would seem to be the best of both models, of course, depending on what YOU like in the way the motorcycle rides.

I am also a person that likes "plain" things. The more electronic gadgets on the (OLD) motorcycle, the more likely (I figure) I'll be looking for hard to replace parts, should something break on my motorcycle. I am looking for a 1983 GL1100 to purchase for myself in the fall of the year... I'd prefer a "standard" with low miles and when I find it, it will be my daily rider and the 1200 will be what I take on longer trips when I take them.
I am wrong as often as I am right concerning what is wrong with someone else' motorcycle without having seen the machine in person. Guessing with limited information, as to the source of the trouble, is sketchy at best.

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Re: GL1100 VS GL1200 SEI

Postby dingdong » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:37 am

Personally I would keep the 1100. With what you have done to yours you won't gain much by switching. That said there isn't much difference in the handling between the two bikes. The 1100 is very capable of 2 up riding. Both handle quite well and both are great road bikes. Get yourself a bicycle hand tire pump to carry with you. Airing up the suspension at the gas station could possibly blow the seals in the shocks.


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