Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?


Information and questions on GL1000 Goldwings (1975-1979)
Post Reply
Winger1957
Posts: 24
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2020 3:47 pm
Location: San Antonio TX
Motorcycle: 1978 GL1000

Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by Winger1957 »



Hello. I bought my first GL in 1979, a Sulfur Yellow '76 that was used and beautiful. I was 19 and went in to buy a dirt bike, saw the fantastic engine in that GL and bought it on the spot. Loved that bike. Tomorrow I am driving 200 miles to look at and probably buy a 1978 GL1000 that I am told has not been ridden for 25 years. Yes, 25 years. Fellow says it had some gas in it when he parked it in his garage. Brand new, 25 year old tires :) Says bike won't start.

I know that throwing money at one solves nearly all problems, but before I hand him my cash, I would like to hear from some of you. 25 years is a LONG time to sit in a garage. I'm wondering of a timing belt broke and bent some valves or if a rod broke, etc. Probably no way to tell, and I don't mind installing valves, but having to yank that motor will be a chore if I have to do it. And I likely have to do it because the oxidation on that engine is bad. Looks more like mineral deposits.

Shocks are surely worn out. Seals, etc. Comstars. Most comments will be much appreciated. My primary focus is the engine and any engine issues.


User avatar
winguyjo
Posts: 412
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:26 pm
Location: b.c. Canada
Motorcycle: wing1 : 1982 gl1100 interstate; resurrection complete. SOLD
wing2 : 1980 gl1100 interstate; resurrection complete. SOLD.
wing3 : 81gl1100i frame/82gl1100a engine/81cb900 bits. resurrection complete. naked. SOLD.
wing4 : 1977 gl1000 black w/ blue pinstripes; resurrection complete. SOLD
wing5 : 1977 gl1000 black w/gold pinstripes; nearly roadworthy when purchased, NOW RIDING.
wing6 : 1975 gl1000 blue; SOLD

Re: Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by winguyjo »

not running.
sitting 25 years.
no problem ... just don't pay more than 500 for it. preferably less. resurrecting these things is a labour of love. you would usually be money ahead by buying one that's ready to roll.
User avatar
rudolphwolven
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2014 7:05 am
Location: Netherlands - Utrecht
Motorcycle: 1975 GL1000 K1

Re: Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by rudolphwolven »

*****
Mine........ a 1975 GL1000 K1 / 11.000 mls had been sitting / untouched in my garage for 31 years (from 1983 to 2014) .......see picture..






In 2014 I could sell it for $ 5.500,-.........but I decided to dismantle / restore it and keep it for myself........this is the result......







Proud winner of the NGWClub-USA contest Bike of the Year 2016--Image
Good Hondog
Posts: 206
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 6:56 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100 Interstate
1978 GL1000

Re: Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by Good Hondog »

rudolphwolven wrote: Tue Oct 13, 2020 6:57 pm *****
Mine........ a 1975 GL1000 K1 / 11.000 mls
Wow, that's the nicest first generation Goldwing in the world! Awesome job you did Rudolph. Winger 1957, if the current owner parked it years ago in his garage ask him what it was running like and why he stopped riding it. Providing it's not obviously a junker with missing parts it's likely not buggered up, just parked and forgotten about. If you buy it, get any spare parts and manuals he has for it. 78-79 are really cool Wings. Unique styling that will grow on you very quickly. I love my 1978 GL1000 as much as my 1980 Interstate. Post pictures of it when you see it.
Winger1957
Posts: 24
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2020 3:47 pm
Location: San Antonio TX
Motorcycle: 1978 GL1000

Re: Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by Winger1957 »

I bailed on the 25-year sitter and bought a running '78. The guy I bought it from neglected to tell me that he cut the rear fender off to give it a "bobber look". And he hung some ape-hangers on it, ditched the mufflers and some other bad things. But the motor cranks instantly and other than a pop and a miss every little while, sounds pretty good. The title seems to be a real title, but the sticker on the bikes head-tube is gone. The serial on the engine does not match the serial on the title, but that could be from an engine swap. Its blue, mostly, with a black battery cover on the left side :)

Most pressing issues are a rear fender and fender liner, and buying some handlebars that have about a four inch rise and around a 17 degree sweep. If I can locate a good fender, I think I have the brake/turn-signal parts in a bag he gave me :).

I'm happier with a running bike than I would have been with the non-runner. Just listening to the roar of that unfuffled engine makes me happy, although I want a set of the stock, black very quiet mufflers if any of you know where I can buy them. I cannot find them new or used. I'll throw up some images today.
W109driver
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2020 10:11 am
Location: Devon. England
Motorcycle: 1976 GL1000

Re: Probably Buying A '78 GL1000 Tomorrow. Advice? Warnings?

Post by W109driver »

Pics pics pics!

Slight hijacking......
My bike has the original silencer.
Which is fine, does have a long double pea-shooter look about it on my budget cafe racer look.
But I don't not totally dislike that, but has anyone ever removed the muffler tubes inserted? How was it? Noise/performance?


Post Reply