Night riding windshield glare


Technical information and Q&A applicable to all years and models of Goldwings
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OldguyGlen
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Night riding windshield glare

Post by OldguyGlen » Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:44 am



I try to avoid night riding for safety reasons. But when I do, the Plexiglas windshield has a lot of glare from oncoming headlights. Has a "Halo" effect. I have to peek over the top, or around the sides in some of the worst cases.
But it looks fine in the daylight. Doesn't have many scratches, etc.
So do you Wingers have suggestions for cleaning, polishing, etc.? Are there any "miracles-in-a-bottle" products? Or do you buy a new shield every few years?
Comments?? Thanks.



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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by julimike54 » Mon Jul 01, 2019 11:52 am

You might want to try Novus plastic polish, etc. They have three (1,2 &3) that are designed to restore the windscreen. It sounds from your description that you have a lot of very small scratches to create the 'halo' effect.
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by JSpree » Mon Jul 01, 2019 10:01 pm

I clean my windshields with Mother's ( clear coat safe) liquid car wax, I also wear yellow safety glasses from Harbor Freight. This gets rid of 90% of the headlight glare from on coming traffic, plus I live in a low population area so it goes from real dark to real bright when traffic comes at you.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by DarthJ » Mon Jul 01, 2019 11:56 pm

Novus 1,2,3 would work best. probably 2, as if you're experiencing glare, but not seeing any scratches during the day, they are small. I have the National Cycle V4, and love it at night.
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by CrystalPistol » Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:23 am

OldguyGlen wrote:
Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:44 am
I try to avoid night riding for safety reasons. But when I do, the Plexiglas windshield has a lot of glare from oncoming headlights. Has a "Halo" effect. I have to peek over the top, or around the sides in some of the worst cases.
But it looks fine in the daylight. Doesn't have many scratches, etc.
That "halo" effect is scratches that are just very minute … but they are there from cleanings, etc. Plexiglass is just that and has no hard coat so it picks up the fine scratches. A hard coated product made of …. like GE MR-10 is a soft lexan with a thin hard coat bonded on each side. F4 windshields are that way. I have had both, and the Plexiglass needs polishing to stay clear for night riding with no "halo" effect. It can be done, but it takes polishing using plastic polish and clean cloths.
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Andy Cote
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by Andy Cote » Tue Jul 02, 2019 5:51 am

Ask your Optometrist to check for cataract.
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by oldmopars » Wed Jul 17, 2019 10:43 am

I know this may sound crazy, but I have used Pledge furniture polish. You spray it on, rub it around, let it dry a little and then polish it off. It also works good to shed water like RainX

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by MikeB » Wed Jul 17, 2019 12:05 pm

A good percentage of time it is not what you use to clean and polish your windshield but how you clean and polish it.

Circular motion during the cleaning and polishing of anything leaves micro-fine circular swirl scratches in the surface. It is pretty much undetectable in daylight hours. However at night, those micro-fine scratches in your windshield will catch the light and give you the HALO effect.

To fix that, use the NOVUS polish 2. But, do not apply or remove in a circular motion as it says on the bottle. Use up and down or side to side motion. Once you have polished the shield, always use the up and down or side to side motion when cleaning your windshield.

I have always used Sumner Laboratories (23304) 210 Plastic Cleaner/Polish available from Amazon. They also have a 23305 210 Plus Plastic Scratch Remover Cleaner & Polish but I have never used it. Always using the up and down motion to clean and polish will add to the shields longevity.

My Tulsa Tall windshield on my GL1500 was installed in 1999, believe it or not, and I do not have any swirls or micro-fine scratches that cause the light to refract. By the way, I've put over 179,000 mile on the bike with that windshield in place.

In 2016 I bought a new windshield because I heard that Tulsa was going out of business. That shield is still in the box in storage. I have not had the need to replace the original.

I also have a Tulsa Tall on my GL1800 that has been on the bike since 2014. After 62,000 miles it is still scratch using 210 and no circular cleaning/polishing motion.
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Wing--Man
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by Wing--Man » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:15 am



It is good we have dreams, for if they were real, most would not be alive.
Smile for yourself next time you wake up, you have another fine day to live.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by MikeB » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:26 am

MikeB wrote:
Wed Jul 17, 2019 12:05 pm
I also have a Tulsa Tall on my GL1800 that has been on the bike since 2014. After 62,000 miles it is still scratch using 210 and no circular cleaning/polishing motion.
OOPs.. still scratch free.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by OldguyGlen » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:43 am

Follow-up post... Thanks to all who contributed.
I had heard that some of the polishes were too aggressive and could make things worse on soft plexiglass. I didn't want to try and abrade the entire surface down below the deepest scratch.
But I acknowledge that some contributors had success with those.
I chose a more cautious approach and went with the Pledge polish. Actually used the Target store brand equivalent. Did up-n-down strokes with microfiber cloth. Success !!! I was amazed at the improvement. Still not perfect, but way better. I will repeat it a few more times, but don't want to build up too thick and remain "smeary".
Now, what do I do now for continued maintenance? Use water only and microfiber? What about dried on bugs? Assume "Bug & Tar" too aggressive? What about other spray cleaners, or detergents? Do I need to re-polish after every cleaning?
At least now I can ride at night when necessary and not panic over oncoming traffic. But I'm super caution, and don't like bugs, so I will still avoid nights when possible.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by WingAdmin » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:51 am

I used to use furniture polish exclusively. The problem is that it leaves an oily film, which then picks up and collects dust quickly, which leaves you with...a filthy windscreen again.

I now use only the Honda Spray Cleaner - on the windshield, body, wheels, everywhere. It cleans amazingly well, cleans and coats the windshield, and leaves a shiny protective finish:

https://www.amazon.com/Honda-08732-SCP0 ... ref=sr_1_2

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by dingdong » Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:04 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:51 am
I used to use furniture polish exclusively. The problem is that it leaves an oily film, which then picks up and collects dust quickly, which leaves you with...a filthy windscreen again.
This is the reason I also don't use Pledge. Also with a black 1500 all it does is smear and smudge with fingerprints and collect dust. I use a cleaner with carnuba wax included. Actually repels dust and if you spray on the windshield and let stand for a minute bugs wipe right off with ease. Rain on the windshield also beads and runs up and off.
Armor All Ultra Shine Spray Detailer fortified with carnuba wax. Sometimes hard to find though. Amazon is your friend.
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by AZgl1800 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:56 pm

my 3 previous bikes all had the Tulsa Tall windshield, and I too had the glare problem.

I totally solved it altogether by dumping the tall windshields, and went to a Madstad which is infinitely adjustable to above eyeline to way below eyeline.

I drop it down below eyeline if I must ride after dark, which I try to never, ever, do.

Madstad is available for 1200, 1500, 1800 bikes.
cycleMax sells them, and is the only place where you can easily order one for the 1500.
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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by Mh434 » Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:04 pm

Be careful using polishes.

IIRC, the windscreen has a coating which is fairly hard, and designed to reduce scratching (vs. plain plexiglas or Lexan, which are quite soft on the surface). Any polishing compound will wear down or remove the hardened coating, and vastly increase scratching (ask me how I know!!).

My GL1500's windscreen actually looks a bit yellow and foggy with all the microscopic scratches. However, I can return it to crystal clear & free of any scratches or "halo effect" in minutes. My technique is to wash it well (don't use liquid dish soap - it's too harsh) with a mild soap and hot water, using an old, 100% cotton T-shirt (synthetics can scratch). After drying with a genuine chamois, I use Mother's paste wax. Once that's done, it looks like it's brand new. It lasts a month or two (2-3 washes), and then I re-do it. Even the glare of oncoming headlights doesn't result in any glare.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by WingAdmin » Wed Aug 14, 2019 9:57 pm

Mh434 wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:04 pm
Be careful using polishes.

IIRC, the windscreen has a coating which is fairly hard, and designed to reduce scratching (vs. plain plexiglas or Lexan, which are quite soft on the surface). Any polishing compound will wear down or remove the hardened coating, and vastly increase scratching (ask me how I know!!).

My GL1500's windscreen actually looks a bit yellow and foggy with all the microscopic scratches. However, I can return it to crystal clear & free of any scratches or "halo effect" in minutes. My technique is to wash it well (don't use liquid dish soap - it's too harsh) with a mild soap and hot water, using an old, 100% cotton T-shirt (synthetics can scratch). After drying with a genuine chamois, I use Mother's paste wax. Once that's done, it looks like it's brand new. It lasts a month or two (2-3 washes), and then I re-do it. Even the glare of oncoming headlights doesn't result in any glare.
It depends. If it is polycarbonate, then yes, it has a hard coating, because it is easy to scratch. If it is acrylic (plexiglas) then it is much more resistant to scratching, and typically doesn't have a hard coating.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by Mh434 » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:49 pm

I don’t know which material the Wing windscreen is made of. It seems to be the same as my Kawasaki one was, and using Novus polishes destroyed it.

I just want to advise caution, especially as there are non-abrasive means to make it clear again...

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by bigsteveswing » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:18 am

I don't know what material it is made of but I also have a Tulsa Tall on my bike (came that way from my Grandfather). I recently bought some Meguiar's PlastX polish and brand new terry towels, used up down slightly diagonal motion on the windshield and also on the plastic sidecar windshield. The results were very good. I have yet to ride in the rain, but it is much clearer in the dark or driving into bright sunlight.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Meguiar-s-G1 ... z/16550253

I would love to get a Madstad though and try it out, I am finding that I am not a fan of looking through the shield all the time.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by WingAdmin » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:22 am

bigsteveswing wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:18 am
I don't know what material it is made of but I also have a Tulsa Tall on my bike (came that way from my Grandfather). I recently bought some Meguiar's PlastX polish and brand new terry towels, used up down slightly diagonal motion on the windshield and also on the plastic sidecar windshield. The results were very good. I have yet to ride in the rain, but it is much clearer in the dark or driving into bright sunlight.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Meguiar-s-G1 ... z/16550253

I would love to get a Madstad though and try it out, I am finding that I am not a fan of looking through the shield all the time.
Tulsa Talls are acrylic. I have the same one.

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Re: Night riding windshield glare

Post by AZgl1800 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:44 pm

bigsteveswing wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:18 am


I would love to get a Madstad though and try it out, I am finding that I am not a fan of looking through the shield all the time.
Once you try it, you won't regret it.
There are times to have the windscreen above your eyeline,
and there are definitely times when you want it below eyeline...

Madstad gives you that option, on the fly... as I do when needed.
( just don't try it while in the twisties though :shock: )


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