Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?


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Andy27012
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Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Andy27012 » Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:18 pm



I know there is no one size fits all bike and what your doing with it determines how you feel too. In my opinion excluding slow speed this is the best road bike I have ever ridden. I’m not a big sports bike guy but I enjoy how darn nimble the thing is at speed and how quickly i have become comfortable with it. I may look like a dork riding it but I’ll be wearing the biggest smile of anyone on the road. If I was in stop and go traffic or sub 10 miles per hour a lot I would be looking for a six hundred cc standard so I wouldn’t have so much to deal with but for normal city and country riding I love it!



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themainviking
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1987 Harley Softail Custom
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by themainviking » Sat Feb 02, 2019 7:18 am

I have been riding motorcycles since 1963. In that time I have ridden probably a dozen, of which, including this GL1800, I have owned seven of them. I have put over 800,000 miles on them in that time, so suffice it to say they got well tested. They were all the best bike I had ever ridden - when I was riding them. Technology had a lot to do with that, but my own maintenance and upkeep and rebuilding skills had a lot to do with it also. The difference between all those others, and this one, for me - and I can only speak for me - is that this GL1800 is the easiest to live with motorcycle I have ever owned. It just does not break down. Now it is not that old, but the quality of build is there, at least in the engine and drive line. The tupperware creaks and groans and rattles, but that is the nature of tupperware. However - and there can always be a "however" - changing an air filter on one of these suckers is a job made in hell. Those who have done it a few times can get it down to 2 to 2 1/2 hours. I have chunky hands and I cut easily, so by the time I am done (about 3 1/2 hours) I look like I have been in a fight with a cat. Thank all the powers that be that an air filter is only a rare requirement.

And yes. It is a fun bike to ride because of the power and nimble footed handling. All those "Dragon Roads" in Virginia and Tennessee and Georgia are a real thrill on this bike. I am of the opinion tho that technology is responsible for that, and it is the tires that do it. Those radial tires just roll into corners and roll back out. I put Michelin Radial Tires on a 1974 Harley Davidson FLH which is about the same size and weight of a motorcycle as the GL1800, and the handling on it was phenomenal as well with those tires. It was like a different brand new bike. I will be the absolute last person in this world to knock other manufacturers products. I have not yet ridden a BMW touring or dual sport, but if and when I do, I am sure I will find them to be the best bike I have ever ridden - while I am riding it. It will probably be brand new and tight and quiet and will handle really well.

To sum this up - I just love motorcycles... all motorcycles. I wish I could own all of them and the rest of you had to ask to borrow them, LMFAO.

And the key to low speed comfort is parking lot practice.
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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mterraci
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by mterraci » Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:21 am

The GL 1800 is a comfortable bike to ride, and as you noted is very nimble for something this big and this heavy. It handles like a much smaller bike which amazes me. While nobody likes having to crawl along in traffic or go slowly in confined spaces I find this bike has pretty good parking lot manners, particularly for something this big and this heavy.
My biggest plus for this bike is the confidence it provides, partly in how it handles, but particularly in how reliable it is. The engine is an absolute workhorse and just seems to run forever and ever. Perform the maintenance to take care of it and it just keeps running mile after mile without so much as a complaint. I also really appreciate the fact that it's water cooled; I live in a warm climate and have seen more than one HD shut down in a traffic jam on a hot day.

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MikeB
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by MikeB » Sat Feb 02, 2019 2:10 pm

Andy27012 wrote:
Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:18 pm
In my opinion excluding slow speed this is the best road bike I have ever ridden.
Ditto! If it wasn't the best for me, I'd be riding something else. Been riding since 1969.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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C-dub
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by C-dub » Sat Feb 02, 2019 2:19 pm

Maybe. Probably!

I’ve had three great bikes. My GS1100E, Hayabusa, and now my 2016 Wing. I saw a good chunk of this country on that 1100, but I’ll put far more miles on this Wing and see a great deal more with my wife.
I am not and have never been a LEO. My avatar is in honor of my friend, Dallas Police Sargent Michael Smith, who was murdered along with four other officers in Dallas on 7.7.2016.

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Sidcar
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Sidcar » Sat Feb 02, 2019 3:34 pm

When it comes to comfort, smoothness and effortless power the answer is yes, by a country mile.

Sid.

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offcenter
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by offcenter » Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:33 pm

My 1500 is by far the quietest and most comfortable bike I've ever owned.
I'll keep this one running as long as I can.
George in Jersey.
99 Goldwing GL-1500 SE
76 Goldwing Gl-1000
77 Honda CT-90 "Trail 90"

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AZgl1800
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by AZgl1800 » Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:00 am

I have owned an '84, '86SEi, '94SE, '98SE, and now a '02 1800.

the two 1500s were by far, the most comfortable to ride on the road, and the smoothest by far.

But, as I got older, the length of time between riding became longer and longer, to the point that the '98SE was starting to have carb problems and I had to keep using Seafoam all the time. I ran into a crunch and had to sell it....

3 years later, I found the '02 and my goal was to never again have a bike with carburetors. It must be fuel injected. So, I waited and waited until an 1800 showed up that I could afford, I ignored the odometer reading as IMO, it don't matter as long as it runs like new. the one I found had about 97,000 on it and I have never regretted buying it.

It sits patiently in the shop, and always starts up the same, rolls over for 5 seconds and starts right up.

But, the 1800's ride to me is very harsh, and it is extremely noisy... most of that is the cam chain, some of it is the alternator. Once my helmet is on, I don't hear the noise anymore, and I just go on and enjoy it.

The ride harshness I am sure, is due to it having Traxxion springs front and rear.... it rides like a tank. But, it tracks straight as an arrow, and follows the handlebar inputs perfectly, never a wobble.

I had occasion to test ride an '09 for a friend before he came up to my hometown to buy it. That bike felt a lot like my '98SE as far as ride comfort... it was bone stock.
~John

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tfdeputydawg
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by tfdeputydawg » Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:23 am

The most comfortable for seating position and location of controls was my Harley Ultra Classic.
Sadly, the heat and vibration negated the "comfort" of the bike.
While the seating position on my 1800 Wing was just in the fair catagory the smoothness of the bike, coupled with no heat made it more desirable to own.

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RockportDave
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by RockportDave » Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:55 pm

I’ve ridden many bikes in my life and the most UN-comfortable was a friends custom Triumph 650 hardtail. They look cool, but suck.
Back to the subject. The 1980 Yamaha 850 Special with a windjammer fairing was fun, but riding it over 100 miles at once would numb hands, legs and butt. Pretty dependable though.
With a desire for long trips, I traded the Yamaha in on a 1981 GL1100 interstate which was by far, more comfortable.
When the opportunity to buy a salvaged 1985 GL1200 LTD, I sold the GL1100 and got the Limited roadworthy. I loved that bike. With multi port fuel injection, it would start and idle flawlessly. Riding at sea level or in the mountains, it never missed a stroke. Had matching helmets, stereo, CB, intercom and trip computer. The wife and I put a lot of miles on that bike, including going on our honeymoon on it.
Opportunity knocked again and I was able to buy a 1988 GL1500 with 77,000 miles on it. Knowing by now how dependable the Goldwing was and having a buddy with a used bike dealership and shop, the miles weren’t a problem. About 6 months later, the Honda dealership had a 1988 GL1500 same color as my 1988, but only 30,000 miles, and I traded for it. We put many miles on that bike and loved it. Coming home from work one day, a young lady “didn’t see me” and pulled out about 20’ in front of me. Totaled the bike and me for a while. With 5 kids all going to need cars in the next 6-7 years, we didn’t ride for about 20 years.
Fast forward to March of 2018, I rode my son’s Vulcan Vaquero and the bug hit me. I was really leaning toward another 1985 LTD or 86 SEi, but I’m not getting any younger so a GL1500 with reverse was the ticket. Found our 1999 SE and we love it. Having never ridden an 1800, I can’t say whether it is better than the 1500 or not, but from all the bikes I have owned or ridden, and with our desire to ride long distances at a time, the GL1500 is one of the best and most dependable bike I have ever been on.
Dave
1999 GL1500SE 5th Goldwing through the years

oldmopars
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by oldmopars » Sat Feb 16, 2019 5:18 pm

The most direct answer to this question is NO. I liked my BMW K1200LT better, but my 1500SE is a great bike. I am slowly learning to like it, and I hope to love it soon. For me the BMW was just better. When it comes to fixing them, the GL1500 wins every time. So, when the weather warms up I will get the bike out of the shed and start learning to love it. I have a great trip planned in July, will put well over 2000 miles on it, by the end of the trip I will either be in love with it, or be looking for a for sale sign. :D

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RockportDave
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by RockportDave » Sat Feb 16, 2019 9:01 pm

I have a buddy who has had a couple of Voyagers, a GL1800 and now he and his wife both ride BMW’s and love them. He didn’t care for the seat and body positioning on the GL1800. Said it was uncomfortable for him.
I have another buddy who preferred the Yamaha Voyager over the GL1200’s for the same reason, but he did end up with a GL1500 and liked it.
I have never ridden a BMW, but after working on many German autos I am not a fan of the cars. I do plan to ride my buddies BMW to see how it feels.
The GL1500 fits me well. I’m 5’9” and I believe that has a lot to do with the fit. I also like the 6 cylinder engine with the torque it puts out.
Dave
1999 GL1500SE 5th Goldwing through the years

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Big Blue UK
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Big Blue UK » Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:32 pm

Since 1982, it is the only bike I have ridden, and the only bike I will ride.
If at first you don't succeed, hide the evidence.

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Rednaxs60 » Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:31 pm

Have owned an 1800, and still have my '85 LTD and '95 1500. The 1500 is a better riding position for us taller riders, I'm 6'2". My '85 is also a better riding position for myself over the 1800. I prefer fuel injection and this is one reason why I have the '85 LTD. I can't say the 1500 is a better 2 up touring bike, but the torque of the 1500 is quite nice. Maintenance wise, all three have pros and cons.

Enjoyed the 1800, quite a nimble bike for its size and weight, better than some of the less pedigreed bikes such as the Suzuki Boulevard, had a C90T. Found the handling of the 1800 far superior, as is the 1200 and 1500.

I'm in the same court as themainviking, best bike in the world is the one you own and ride, to each his own.

Cheers
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

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C-dub
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1981 Honda XL250
1975 Suzuki GT185M
1970 Suzuki TC90 dirtbike

Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by C-dub » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:38 am

Rednaxs60 wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:31 pm
Have owned an 1800, and still have my '85 LTD and '95 1500. The 1500 is a better riding position for us taller riders, I'm 6'2". My '85 is also a better riding position for myself over the 1800. I prefer fuel injection and this is one reason why I have the '85 LTD. I can't say the 1500 is a better 2 up touring bike, but the torque of the 1500 is quite nice. Maintenance wise, all three have pros and cons.

Enjoyed the 1800, quite a nimble bike for its size and weight, better than some of the less pedigreed bikes such as the Suzuki Boulevard, had a C90T. Found the handling of the 1800 far superior, as is the 1200 and 1500.

I'm in the same court as themainviking, best bike in the world is the one you own and ride, to each his own.

Cheers
I considered a Boulevard before getting my Wing. I like the look, but couldn’t handle the riding position. They are very different bikes.
I am not and have never been a LEO. My avatar is in honor of my friend, Dallas Police Sargent Michael Smith, who was murdered along with four other officers in Dallas on 7.7.2016.

Seo
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Seo » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:44 pm

I love motorcycles. Been riding bikes since 1964; during that time, I have never had an accident. So, from Harleys, Ducati, Indian, Kawasaki, BMW and Triumphs, I have ever had a more comfortable, dependable motorcycle as my 1500CC Goldwing.
Ride Safe,
Seo

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Rednaxs60 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:41 pm

C-dub wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:38 am
I considered a Boulevard before getting my Wing. I like the look, but couldn’t handle the riding position. They are very different bikes.
You're right in the fact they are totally different bikes. The Boulevard does not handle like the GW in any respects. It was comfortable, good fuel economy, but not in the same ball park.
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

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jgarrett
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by jgarrett » Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:09 am

My 1985 Limited is.... well I did ride a BMW K1600GTL that was pretty close.....and I did ride a 2018 Goldwing and liked not shifting gears?

tbird71
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Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Standard W/Hondaline Fairing
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by tbird71 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:20 am

I have had many bikes and overall my '84 stripper with a Hondaline fairing
is the best. Not as smooth as my 89 1500, but much easier to manuever and
almost as comfortable. It just "fits" me.
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Jag39
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Jag39 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:49 am

Mine is a love/hate relationship. Absolutely love the handling and ride. Also the smooth power band. Really hate the complexity. I have been stranded beside the road, a couple of times, with parts scattered everywhere, trying to track down an issue. Currently dealing with the carbs, and have had them on and off at least 5 times. Anyway, thinking of finding something without all the plastic, solenoids, sensors and vacuum lines, to make it more easily fixed alongside the road. Planning a trip from Florida to my property in Wyoming, in the Spring, and not convinced this thing won't leave me sitting somewhere. I pull a camper trailer, though, and not sure what I might find to replace this "tow truck". ;)

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DenverWinger
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by DenverWinger » Fri Mar 01, 2019 6:25 pm

Jag39 wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:49 am
I pull a camper trailer, though, and not sure what I might find to replace this "tow truck". ;)
Get a 1100! :mrgreen: :lol: :D
Mine pulls the camper just fine! :)
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♪ 99 Bugs in the Code. ♫ :(
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♫ 127 Little Bugs in the Code. ♫ ♪ :shock:

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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by detdrbuzzard » Fri Mar 01, 2019 6:59 pm

once the seat, rear shocks, and front springs were replaced my 1500 wing became a better road bike despite its weight. don't get me wrong I love goldwings especially 1200's it was the bike that got me back on the road. as many of you know I hardly ride my '93 SE any more and spend most of my time on the Mighty ST 1300 but not because it is more comfortable than the wing but because it is lighter than my wing which is better on my not so good knees when lifting them off the side stand. I don't care much for the new wing and I've never been a fan of the feet forward riding position or all the imitation Harleys or Harleys so my next all street bike will most likely be another Mighty ST 1300 with a trunk. what about the BMW I just picked up? I know that lots of people say they are good long haul bikes but I haven't had mine long enough to say, i'm still making it more comfortable for me
'99 ST1100, '93 se
'75 cb750k, '79 cb 750f, '79 cb750 superK
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.... william

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Wildwilly018
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by Wildwilly018 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 7:47 pm

With almost 45 yrs of riding, I have ridden a lot of different bike. Some smaller and lighter and some large and heavy touring bikes. But my opinion is the Goldwing is the best bike I have ridden. Comfort, reliability, options like cruise is great for older riders. Love all the storage, stereo, CB and the balance the bike has. I can move pretty slowly and never go off line. Mine is the first generation 88 GL 1500. And still like new to me.

tommyrod996
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by tommyrod996 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:56 pm

I have owned every model gold wing- 1000, 1100,1200,1500,1800. I loved them all. I rode police motors in the SF Bay Area for 38 years. Kawasaki and Harley. I owned Harley’s Honda’s and BMW.
The BEST by far is my Goldwing. Slow speed is not an issue for me. The bike does it all. It has never failed me and I have ridden many miles on them.
I recently purchased a BMW R1200 GS adventure and it too is a great bike but used for different kinds of trips. My 1986 Harley FXRT is the Sunday afternoon cruiser but the 2005 GL1800BJ is my love.

Must confess that I’m thinking of the newest model Goldwing but will wait and see. They are truly very reliable bikes.

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quasi2008
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Re: Is the Goldwing the best bike you have ever ridden?

Post by quasi2008 » Sat Mar 02, 2019 7:15 am

smoothest? probably. comfortable? not even close. I despise mid controls. miss my road king.


man can't live on air alone!

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