1989 GL1500 under serious consideration


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Ericson38
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1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:31 am



I have had two wings, a 1976 twenty five years ago, and our current '83 black standard in great condition. My wife would like more comfort, so we looked at a 89 GL1500 with 60 k miles.

Has an analog dash. Price is 4500.

Started and ran fine, but was so burried in the shop that we decided (and it was on ebay not yet meeting reserve) to leave for the day and think about it more.

I need to test drive it to make sure the trany shifts are good. What else should I be aware of on it?

It sounds good, the alternator does have output, but I don't really know the mechanical weakness points on this year model.

I do have a shop manual.

Any feedback would be appreciated.

Charlie



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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:21 pm

Have a read on this post...viewtopic.php?f=6&t=9204
You could also do a "search" on the top of the page for 88 or 89 gl1500..It will result in every post about the problems,repairs,or just general talk.

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:56 pm

That's a good link you sent. I did look on this forum for '88-'89 issues also.

Was there really a suspension change in '03 or so where the later bikes were lowered and suspenion rates increased ?

At 60K mikes, she must be ready for fork oil change, oil and filter, air filter, gas line filter, belts, and coolant change.

They didn't sell it on eBay yesterday, so we have a another chance this weekend...we found the linked brakes weren't working so they are working on that right now.

Anything I should do in the test drive that would expose anything common to these ?

Here's our current ride-

Thanks again-
Attachments
'83 Standard-'Blacky'
'83 Standard-'Blacky'

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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Sun Feb 19, 2012 7:05 pm

Nothing special about the linked brakes.The pedal operates the rear and one front,the hand operates the other.
I haven't had mine on the road yet,just got it in December.Doing all you mentioned.So far cost me about $100 to prep it.Don't know anything special about the suspension,other than the air compressor runs the rear.There is no air assist on the front.Look close at the shifting lever.Where your toe hits should have only just a wiggle.Mine moved up and down almost 1/2".I did a mod to fix that.I have a post about a sloppy shifter,It might be worth looking through too.
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=9365
and the results
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=9448

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:48 pm

I was reading through your notes on the shifter last night, and will look at that too.

I hear a lot of concerns with early Goldwingers and linked brakes, but my 83 has them (1st year) and I like them fine.

This guy has a collection of GWs, and I really wanted an 86 or 87 Aspencade (which he had in carb and FI versions(, but after really looking those over and then the 89 model, I think the 6 is a good move up for us, since I can keep the 1100 anyway.

I did note that the legroom on the 89 was a bit tight, knees were closer to the handlebar ends.

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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:22 pm

My reservation about the braking systems on the wings I've owned and still own(gl1000,1100,1200,and my new 88 gl1500) is the brake lines.There OLD and do tend to get a bit mushy.It's a swelling when the brakes are applied.A retrofit with (expensive) SS braided lines improves this mushy problem for the anal people.I just live with it.I always play with the bike first so I know what it will and will not do before I load 2 up and hit the road.
My mod for the sloppy shifting lever was 2 fold.1st to eliminate the weeping oil problem and 2nd to ensure the lever is operating the shift drum to it's full range.I believe it(the sloppy shifter) is the beginning to the dreaded 3-4 transmission failure.But that's just my opinion.

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:13 am

I never liked the mushy brakes on my 1100, they were my biggest complaint. I finally went ahead and put stainless braided brake lines on, and what a difference! Without question, they were the single best upgrade I made to that bike. The brakes became sharp and powerful.

I'll do the same thing to my 1500 eventually...that's a little farther down on the list, though. :)

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:21 pm

I have also been reading about the trigger wheel upgrade. Why would a new reluctor wheel make the engine run better ? Does the size of the teeth have a bearing on the duration of the spark (or intensity) ? It shouldn't, really, I would think.

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:32 am

I read up on the trigger wheel more, its a timing advance from stock.

Thanks

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby trike lady » Wed Feb 22, 2012 12:23 pm

If you change the trigger wheel, wouldn't you also want to do the cam change that is available?
http://www.mblinnovations.com/s_cam.html
It's some food for thought.
I.M.B.B.A. Technician II Certified

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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:11 am

I have always tried to do the absolute minimum amount of modifications to my bikes.They usually comprise of newer more reliable technology rather than re-engineering of the basic design.I'm not building a Franken bike,just overcoming a few shortcomings in the Federal restrictions for fuel systems.My 1500 was designed with a bit of a lean fuel mixture for the USA EPA folks.I have modified them for better performance.Obviously re-engineering the timing,cam specs will also boost performance,but at what cost?A couple more horses?This thing can break most speed limits in 3 seconds now.I'm not dragging the bike,I just want the throttle to pull smooth.

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:52 am

I'm wanting to keep it very stock (love the stock look), and only am thinking of the trigger wheel change when I do the belts. On this trigger wheel, I don't know if Honda changed the cams and jets to round out the mod, or just advanced the timing 4 degs (kind of like saying it was a mistake or a disagreement from the engineers during development and later road testing). Retarded timing makes for easier starts, but for hotter running, and less power from mid to upper RPMs. This engine as a vacuum and mechanical timing advance system also, so wondering if that was changed when the trigger wheel part number changed also.

Talked to the seller night before last, its all ready they said. Since it is 100 miles away, was going to bring some Seafoam along for the first tankfull. Pretty pumped about it. Expecting some front end wobble, since I'm pretty sure it has been on its side stand for months, and the tires were low when I saw it last. Already checked lights, signals, horn, and tire tread, so safety systems should be a 'go'.

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:14 am

Hey,no fair.You didn't say that you bought it.Well just fine.Take it easy on the way home,don't push it,and post the farm fresh pictures.

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:37 am

Oh No, haven't bought it yet, final test ride with cash in hand is this Sat. The work he is doing he needed to do anyway.

Another question on the VIN, this one is 1HFSC220XKAXXXXXX. I saw somewhere that the 220 bikes were for California only, the 221 bikes where the 49 state bikes. If so, is the California model a bit detuned ?

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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Thu Feb 23, 2012 10:26 am

Sorry,but on the fly,I can't find anything about the Ca. model.I suspect it may only be a bit leaner mixture.However there was a recall/mod for the carbs at one time that covered the 88-89.As I recall they used a slightly larger main jet,changed the meetering needle and something about the accelerator pump.

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Feb 23, 2012 10:28 am

Ericson38 wrote:Oh No, haven't bought it yet, final test ride with cash in hand is this Sat. The work he is doing he needed to do anyway.

Another question on the VIN, this one is 1HFSC220XKAXXXXXX. I saw somewhere that the 220 bikes were for California only, the 221 bikes where the 49 state bikes. If so, is the California model a bit detuned ?


You're correct, the 220 VIN indicates it's a California bike. It's not detuned, but it will have a fair bit more emissions stuff on it - an evaporative emission canister, valves and associated hoses, a cooler valve on the carb heater, a different air cleaner cover with the evap storage element in it, and the battery vent tube is closed off if I remember correctly. Other than that, it's the same bike. You could easily (but not necessarily legally) remove all of that crap and the bike should still run exactly the same (just a few pounds lighter).

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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Bogator » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:14 am

My thoughts----it is manmade---you can fix anything that is a problem---good price--get it--then fix what needs fixin--
GOD BLESS

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:50 am

Exactly my sentiments.

Since he had 16 GWs for sale (1200s and 1500s), it was a real intresting situation to be in. The 1200 SEI we started sounded real nice, but there was something about blipping the throttle on the 1500 (with only two carbs!) that was too hard to pass up. Wife felt that 1200s and 1500s were the same from her seating position.

Went through it again with the wife this am, told her I have enough toys (Blackie is a great machine for one), this would only be so we can ride more together...she says GO TRY IT OUT !

Ok, I have (as the UP dispatcher on the Coast Line would tell AMTRAK), authorization to proceed westward, 34 blocks, Santa Barbara to San Simeon.

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virgilmobile
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:02 pm

Just one motorcycle does not constitute "enough toys".sorry.... :D
My wife thinks 3 is enough.
And you know as well as anyone...just as soon as you get it down the road you'r gonna just have to get it.

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 3:14 pm

Right.....

Another one-CB radio, this bike has twin identical looking antennas on the back. Does that mean I need to look for CB radio controls somewhere on this beast. I say beast because the top of the tank on the '83 stardard is featureless.

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virgilmobile
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83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Feb 24, 2012 3:24 pm

My 83 has 1 antenna.it's a multi mode type.Suitable for AM/FM and CB.My 88 has dual antennas.one for the radio and the One on the left for the CB.The control is by my left kneecap .when on the bike obviously.It has 2 knobs and a LCD channel display.

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Ericson38
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Re: 1989 GL1500 under serious consideration

Postby Ericson38 » Sun Feb 26, 2012 6:39 pm

Test drove their 89 as well as their 99 SE model. The 89 had a pretty persistent moan coming up from the front of the engine at light engine load. Kind of like a 2bbl Chey 350, wide open, up a hill. They found no vacuum pulling down on the hot/cold air airbox diverter diaphram after I rode it 20 miles, and suspected that would cause the problem.

The 98 didn't have much engine moaning, but you could hear it out the back some in town, which is OK! A bit of gear whine, but expected it. They both ran and rode great, really excited about the 1500. Even tried out an 86 Aspencade with 24K miles, which after the other two, seemed small. I''m 6'2" at 185 lbs, and the 1500 is a great bike. So that's the way we are headed.

There was about 1/4 inch up and down play in the left side gear selector shaft on both of them (57K and 60K mile bikes), but both shifted perfectlty from my perspective.

Still looking.




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