Life without the shifter brace?


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Adomis63
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Life without the shifter brace?

Post by Adomis63 »



I have heard nothing but praise for this shifter pivot brace, and figured it would be a worthwhile investment to get one for my bike.

In the process of installing it I had discovered it would need a bit of "shaving" to get it to sit flat and clear the weld points on the engine guard. It kept binding up. Well, in my process of trial and error I partially cross-threaded the bold that screws into the frame. Darn. So instead of crossing my fingers and just putting it on there hoping I finally got it on flat, I just decided to put it back together without the brace installed. The threaded nut on the frame is no longer the same thread pattern it was before I started this project. :(

What I would like to know is, how many of you out there are not using the shift brace? Is it worth it to cut my losses and run it stock? The bike shifts pretty well as it is right now, and the shift seal isn't leaking. I figure it couldn't be too bad to run it this way since that's the way it rolled outta the factory.


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blupupher
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by blupupher »

Did you get the original brace or some other one?

I had no issues with the engine guard, but know some do. I had a very simple install.

As for not having it, it is a know weak point that many have had issues with, and is thought to be a part of the reason for the 4th gear issues in the earlier years (pre-'97).
You may never have an issue not having one. I know for me, my shifting improved quite a bit from the installation and think it is a must have from that perspective alone.
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by AZgl1800 »

the pew pew Shifter Brace makes the transmission a whole lot more reliable.
YMMV, but for me, it has to have the brace on it.
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DenverWinger
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by DenverWinger »

Driving a low mileage '93 with a still good transmission I thought it to be wise to have the brace to help keep the transmission good. I note more "positive" shifts into 4th, though if my foot is lazy and I don't preload I still get rewarded with a "crunchy" shift to 4th.

Brace was installed with 50k on the bike, Shifter shaft seal doesn't leak (much), only enough to get the surrounding area around the seal "moist" with oil. No drips. Considering the level of effort to get the bolt out of the extension shaft so I could access the seal (I didn't have a wrench that could get to it effectively) I decided to forego seal replacement unless or until any leakage became significant.

With the improvement in shifting I don't think I would want to be without the brace.
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joeincalif
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by joeincalif »

I have had several Gold Wings . 1100, 1200,.1500's and 1800, and never used one. Had 108,000 on my 92 wing, 55,000 on my 98SE a total of about 250,000 miles combined and never had a shifter seal leak.
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MikeB
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by MikeB »

Adomis63 wrote: Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:11 pm I have heard nothing but praise for this shifter pivot brace, and figured it would be a worthwhile investment to get one for my bike.

In the process of installing it I had discovered it would need a bit of "shaving" to get it to sit flat and clear the weld points on the engine guard. It kept binding up. Well, in my process of trial and error I partially cross-threaded the bold that screws into the frame. Darn. So instead of crossing my fingers and just putting it on there hoping I finally got it on flat, I just decided to put it back together without the brace installed. The threaded nut on the frame is no longer the same thread pattern it was before I started this project. :(

What I would like to know is, how many of you out there are not using the shift brace? Is it worth it to cut my losses and run it stock? The bike shifts pretty well as it is right now, and the shift seal isn't leaking. I figure it couldn't be too bad to run it this way since that's the way it rolled outta the factory.
The shifter brace does mitigate the damage to the seal but a shifter brace is not a requirement.
The shift brace does two things, it cleanes up the slop in the shift shaft and helps the longevity of the seal.
Many a GL1500 owner never even saw a shift brace and their bikes were just fine.
If the seal leaks, replace it. It is easier to replace than just about any other seal on the bike. In fact, it is easier to replace than a headlight bulb.
So bottom line, you do not need a shift brace, it is just a nice farkle.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
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offcenter
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by offcenter »

When I got my 1500, there was oil everywhere down there.
I realized that the shifter seal was leaking like crazy and
the shifter linkage was very sloppy.
Put in a new seal AND the shifter brace.
No problems since and the bike shifts better.
30,000 miles with the brace installed so far.
Just my two cents...
George in Jersey.
99 Goldwing GL-1500 SE
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WingAdmin
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by WingAdmin »

Mine was leaking as well, so I put in the seal and the shifter brace at the same time. Mine is one of the very first braces made - I believe it was a pre-production prototype. It's been installed for about eight years now, and still works great. No seal leaks, and the bike still shifts perfectly. The shifting action was SO much improved with the addition of the brace.
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4given
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by 4given »

1. Is it low mileage? 2. Do you shift sensibly? 3. Does the seal look good? 4. Does it shift smooth, especially into 4th gear? If you answered yes to those questions, I wouldn’t make the brace a priority.

5. Do you plan on keeping the bike for a long time? 6. Are you a perfectionist? 7. Will thinking about it keep you awake nights? If you answered no to any of the first 4 and yes to any of the last 3, I would install the brace because it definitely is an improvement.
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JoeJoeGun
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by JoeJoeGun »

I purchased one from ebay and for the life of me I can't get it to sit flat. It binds up just as soon as it starts to tighten up. I have filed and filed, even tried washers with no luck. The only way I can get it to half way work is to leave it loose and use loctite. Then still when you press down for first gear you have to pull it back up twice before it shifts to second gear.

After riding the bike around a few miles I took it all apart and you could see metal shavings and the wear that had already taken place. I like the tightness feel it gives to the shifts but I don't think it's gonna work for me. And by the way, It wasn't giving me any problems before I installed it. I just thought it might help. Plus I like to tinker on it.

Anybody else have this problem? If so, please tell me how you corrected it.

Thanks
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blupupher
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by blupupher »

JoeJoeGun wrote: Sun Jan 31, 2021 5:37 pm I purchased one from ebay and for the life of me I can't get it to sit flat.
...
Do you have a link of what you bought?
There are knock offs of the one by peppi-le-pew on e-bay. No idea of the quality of those.
Seems peppi-le-pew does not have any on e-bay right now?
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Adomis63
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by Adomis63 »

JoeJoeGun wrote: Sun Jan 31, 2021 5:37 pm I purchased one from ebay and for the life of me I can't get it to sit flat. It binds up just as soon as it starts to tighten up. I have filed and filed, even tried washers with no luck. The only way I can get it to half way work is to leave it loose and use loctite. Then still when you press down for first gear you have to pull it back up twice before it shifts to second gear.
This is EXACTLY what was happening to me and why I had to mess with it so much. Every time I would tighten it the mechanism would bind on the upward travel. I bought one from peppi - after considering the ebay knockoff because it was less than half the price... and I figured I would only have to buy it once. It looks properly made, I just need to keep shaving it until it sits flat and rotates smooth but with the cross-threaded nut it won't be easy.
blupupher wrote: Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:52 pm There are knock offs of the one by peppi-le-pew on e-bay. No idea of the quality of those.
Seems peppi-le-pew does not have any on e-bay right now?
I ebay messaged peppi and can confirm that they aren't on ebay anymore. I was informed the official place to pick one up is at http://www.gl1500auxiliaryshifterpivot.com/ - and also that they are in limited supply now.
4given wrote: Sun Jan 31, 2021 4:59 pm If you answered no to any of the first 4 and yes to any of the last 3, I would install the brace because it definitely is an improvement.
Ah geez, I'm all yeses. Is this a test?


I suppose I will keep trying at it - when it gets warmer. Even with the heat going in the garage it was still pretty chilly and I'm sure that contributed to my lack of patience this time around. Does anyone have any ideas on how to deal with my newly cross-threaded nut?
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MikeB
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by MikeB »

Are you talking about this hole with the nut for the engine guard attaching point?


Not much help I can offer on this. That nut, if I remember correctly, is a semi-captive nut held in place in a bracket that is welded to the frame. I do not know how to fix it if it has been damaged. You will have to get creative.
MikeB
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USAF Avionics Communications Tech - 1968 - 1986 / Flight Engineer C-130E - C-141B - 1986 - 1992. Retired
Industrial Maintenance Tech - 1992 - 2014
Retired in Tacoma, WA
Adomis63
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by Adomis63 »

That's the nut! It does look like a regular nut fixed into some sort of retaining bracket. I couldn't look at it close enough to see if it was welded to the bracket or however it was fixed in there.
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MikeB
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by MikeB »

I do not believe it is welded to the bracket. I think it is just captive.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
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JoeJoeGun
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Re: Life without the shifter brace?

Post by JoeJoeGun »

The shifter brace that purchased on ebay was from peppi-le-pew. It said (This is the original design by the inventor).


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