GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Metal_Bob
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GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Metal_Bob » Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:18 am



So my new to me 1994 GL1500i is getting about 30 MPG or less and the search feature was not helping much. (I got about 30 mpg on the 120 mile ride home after purchase and weekly commuting to work 30 miles round trip).

SO... In what order should I tackle stuff?

So far I have already used 1/2 a bottle of seafoam using about 1/4 each fillup (87 grade in ILLINOIS with 10% ethanol ). I'm not sure if it's to soon to see any improvement (I've never used the product before but know many people live by it).

I have new spark plugs, an air filter, 2 oil filters, 4T motorcycle oil, and the 2 small foam filters (I forget their names). I was planning on saving these parts for winter maintenance.

I also have a 4 carb balancing tool (still NIB) that I bought for a different bike. Hopefully, it has the attachments to fit the GL1500.

So, in what order should I try to fix/adjust/check things?

P.S.
I put about 38 PSI in both tires and purchased a spare carb rack off ebay this week (for riding season rebuilds).

P.S.S. I am getting about 800 idle RPMs but it seems to surge a bit. My idle adjuster knob near gas cap is so difficult to move, I'm not sure if its actually moving anything and I'm afraid it will snap.

I believe the bike also surges a little during normal riding, but I'm not sure since the bike is still new to me and I've never ridden another GL.

Hopefully this ebay rack is in good condition for future use and the spare bits should come in handy.



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Wingsconsin
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Wingsconsin » Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:33 am

At what speeds are you getting this kinda MPG?
At 75+ MPH that would be reasonably close to what could be called normal
Under that speed (65MPH or less) you should see the high 30's (37-38)
And at 45-55 MPH you might see the low-40's
An easy throttle wrist will help - don't drive it like you stole it and expect good MPG.
Does the bike have Wind Wings, Hand Wings, Foot Wings, Huge windscreen ? -- All drag coefficients that need top be factored in.
The GL1500 is sensitive to aerodynamic drag above 65 MPH - (which is near the mythical 3000RPM mark)
Check the tires for MAX COLD PSI and set them there - I think closer to 40 might be better in the rear.
Check the brakes for any rubbing or hanging pads...a lack of maintenance on these systems can cause them to not retract properly and drag is the enemy of fuel economy.

Seafoam will help - but it may take time --

Post a picture so we can see what you are riding too ..



Postings are my opinions based on experience and acquired knowledge.
Your results may vary. Universal disclaimers apply.


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Metal_Bob
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Metal_Bob » Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:50 am

1 - 55-60 MPH on normal paved Illinois country roads with 2 stop signs and a few turns during my 15 mile commute (So a nearly non-stop straight line commute).
2 - I do tend to accelerate fast (regardless of vehicle), but I don't typically speed or surge once I get going - Suggested RPM range/gear for the GL1500 on my commute??
3 - Tall slipstreamer windshield with vent (normally open - since I wear a full face helmet and mesh jacket) - No other "wings" yet
4 - As I stated Illinois 87 octane gas with 10% ethanol - Usually Shell brand
5 - I can pump up rear tire to 40 psi
6 - I'll check the brakes today or tomorrow since I'm off work and it's quite damp out.

I had planned on plenty of winter maintenance, but the low MPG is annoying but still ride-able.

EDIT: 67K miles and stock exhaust (as far as I can tell)

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virgilmobile
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby virgilmobile » Wed Jun 04, 2014 2:17 pm

About the same comments from this peanut.
I rode 2 up 75mph for 100 miles and 55 mph for another 35 miles.
Averaged 33.3mpg.
Verify the brakes do not drag.40 psi cold rear,38 psi cold front.
Surging...expect some weak/leaking vacuum hoses need replacing.
Sync shouldn't be a problem for you to do.

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Wingsconsin
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Wingsconsin » Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:14 pm

Metal_Bob wrote:1 - 55-60 MPH on normal paved Illinois country roads with 2 stop signs and a few turns during my 15 mile commute (So a nearly non-stop straight line commute).
2 - I do tend to accelerate fast (regardless of vehicle), but I don't typically speed or surge once I get going - Suggested RPM range/gear for the GL1500 on my commute??
3 - Tall slipstreamer windshield with vent (normally open - since I wear a full face helmet and mesh jacket) - No other "wings" yet
4 - As I stated Illinois 87 octane gas with 10% ethanol - Usually Shell brand
5 - I can pump up rear tire to 40 psi
6 - I'll check the brakes today or tomorrow since I'm off work and it's quite damp out.

I had planned on plenty of winter maintenance, but the low MPG is annoying but still ride-able.

EDIT: 67K miles and stock exhaust (as far as I can tell)


Okay -- you SHOULD be getting closer to the 38 to 40 MPG according to my experiences
I would look at those brakes ASAP - and then look at doing all that winter maintenance (that may have been deferred by the previous owner)
Little changes should make little advancements - a few little advancements and you will be near what you would like to be -
SOME bikes are just more fuel efficient than others for no apparent reason - however I DO think yours is a little low...
I get to run that 10% ethanol stuff as well and my bike delivers MPGs more consistent with what I have posted.
My commute is much like yours everyday totaling near 200 Miles per week - avg about 37-38 MPG.

Postings are my opinions based on experience and acquired knowledge.
Your results may vary. Universal disclaimers apply.


Motorcycle Adventure Storys writen by me
http://neverlost-justexploring.blogspot.com/

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Metal_Bob
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Metal_Bob » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:37 pm

Wingsconsin wrote:I would look at those brakes ASAP - and then look at doing all that winter maintenance (that may have been deferred by the previous owner)
Little changes should make little advancements - a few little advancements and you will be near what you would like to be -
SOME bikes are just more fuel efficient than others for no apparent reason - however I DO think yours is a little low...
I get to run that 10% ethanol stuff as well and my bike delivers MPGs more consistent with what I have posted.
My commute is much like yours everyday totaling near 200 Miles per week - avg about 37-38 MPG.

[/b]


Both wheels are dragging slightly (not sure which rotor/piston on front).
SIGH :cry:
I shouldn't hear any grinding/dragging right?

Hopefully I have time/energy tomorrow to check all 3 filters and maybe check/change the spark plugs.

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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:52 pm

You shouldn't hear any grinding or dragging, and the wheels if suspended in the air should turn at least a short ways when spun. Go out and ride for a bit without using your brakes (downshift to slow down). Then come to a stop and check to see which rotors are warm. If you have a brake dragging, that rotor will be warm (or HOT! - careful).

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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby dingdong » Thu Jun 05, 2014 6:51 am

The surging is probably caused by leaking vacuum lines under the carbs and mat. There are lines with 90 degree elbows that break down. Can cause lowered mpg also. The stiff idle adjust cable just needs lubricating.
Tom

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Metal_Bob
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Re: GL1500 25-30 MPG order to tackle stuff?

Postby Metal_Bob » Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:57 pm

dingdong wrote:The surging is probably caused by leaking vacuum lines under the carbs and mat. There are lines with 90 degree elbows that break down. Can cause lowered mpg also. The stiff idle adjust cable just needs lubricating.


I haven't had a chance to work on any of the suggestions yet except higher tire air pressure. However my spare carbs from ebay showed up. Lots of extra bits and hoses still attached. I haven't studied GL carbs yet, so I have no idea what the pile includes.







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