Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
  • Sponsored Links
Post Reply
Blarney77
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:36 pm
Location: United States
Motorcycle: 1981 Honda Goldwing Interstate GL1100i (And 2015 Honda 750 Shadow Aero and 2008 Honda 750 Shadow Spirit)

Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Blarney77 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:03 am



Last December (2018) my wife found this 1981 Interstate on Craigslist. It was a great deal so I picked it up to fix it up and have an Antique bike! It had a stuck float on one carb, but a tap on it with the soft handle of a screwdriver loosened it and it's been no problem since.
I HAVE had to replace a broken clutch cable. Checked the timing belts and they looked and felt dang near NEW! No reason to change them. Some of the trailer wiring looks a bit shoddy and will be reworking those. I replaced the spark plugs (Old ones were carbonized a lot and gapped wrong) and now she runs really well.
It does need fix-up or replacement "Goldwing" emblems and both the big HONDA and INTERSTATE ones also need to the black edges touched up or replace them if I can find those. Are they available anywhere?

It has "Markland" floorboards, trailer hitch, and (heel-toe shift that needs rubber pads) but I cannot find those anywhere. Is Markland something that went away some time ago and just not available?

Wondering what the large mounts on the highway bar were for? I realize I could mount more lights (Kinda like that idea) to the bars. No one seems to know what those big horizontal eye-brackets on the bar are for. (Highway pegs have been removed since these pics cuz my legs got too hot against the engine using them. They reside on my wife's Shadow now.)

There are four special "NUTS" for the mirrors that are rounded with one flat side that 3 outta 4 are missing and the common hex nuts that were used will fall into the fairing and I have to remove the speaker housings to get the mirrors back on if I have to adjust them. (That's been an issue)

Just for info, the brake lights on the saddlebags are LED and I put LED replacements for the 1157 bulbs in in the main brake light. I'm looking for a good recommendation for LED headlight bulb. I'm looking to switch over to all LED bulbs. This bike is really in very good shape, and I have the original seat that needs recovering and the one on the bike is a (Saddleman?) seat that is very comfortable.

Just looking for some parts to fix it up better. SOME of the pin striping is faded or bubbled and needs reworking, but the paint is still really good. Tires good, brakes good, shocks are manual adjustment. But they hold the air nicely, no leaks. This GW was a really nice find and I want to make her really shine. NOT looking to make it all original. I love the upgrades, just never heard of the company Markland and might have to replace the heel-toe shift and not sure where to go.

Cory Callender
Wichita, Ks.
Attachments











User avatar
dingdong
Posts: 3689
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2010 8:35 am
Location: Oklahoma City
Motorcycle: 1976 gl1000
1993 gl1500A
2004 NRX1800 Rune SOLD

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by dingdong » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:53 pm

I have only one comment. You can not visually inspect the timing belts. Even 40 year old belts "look new". The rubber isn't the problem. It is the cords inside. Your bike your decision. If mine I would replace the belts before I did anything else. Remember it is an interference style engine. Break a belt and you "will" bend at least two valves and possibly damage the pistons.. Good looking bike. Good luck!
Tom

"Molon Labe"

John F. Kennedy would be impeached by todays liberal Democratic socialist party.

Blarney77
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:36 pm
Location: United States
Motorcycle: 1981 Honda Goldwing Interstate GL1100i (And 2015 Honda 750 Shadow Aero and 2008 Honda 750 Shadow Spirit)

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Blarney77 » Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:11 pm

I understand, but I also know I have never seen an OLD belt with many thousands on miles on it with practically NEW intact ink labeling and part numbers on the belt. I have worked on many cars with timing belts and none looked this good with 1000's of miles on it. I have only put about 250 miles on it and the previous owner I contacted again and he said he rode it maybe 500 miles total in the two years he had it.
The previous owner was not sure if it was done before he bought it but thought they had just been changed. Napa confirmed the numbers on the belts were a newer part number they didn't have in 81! I did not want to replace "new belts" if not necessary. I have never seen "old belts" in this good of condition with practically NO wear at all, including the nearly perfect text ink on the belts. I am willing to take the chance.
Besides, even NEW belts can break.

As for the other stuff..... Ideas?

Blarney77
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:36 pm
Location: United States
Motorcycle: 1981 Honda Goldwing Interstate GL1100i (And 2015 Honda 750 Shadow Aero and 2008 Honda 750 Shadow Spirit)

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Blarney77 » Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:25 pm

After reading further, I will consult the bike shop I have dealt with quite a bit that is very very good. i will take their opinion even if it is to replace the dang belts. ;-) I sure as heck don't want 'em to break. I have worked on cars for decades, particularly OLD cars. But most had timing CHAINS rather than belts, but I'm pretty sure these have few miles on them. Still, ii will take the advice of the local mechanic after i show him the pics. I DO know that after many years the rubber gets hard and will develop "Micro Cracks" show other signs of age. The labeling has never lasted long on any belt II have ever used. Even the few timing belts I have changed on cars. These on this bike are remarkably "new" in all appearances I have ever seen. And Ii check close with a 7x visor for any cracks. But of course I did not remove them. Kinda skiddish on that and my wife hates the idea of me paying someone else to do this stuff when generally I can do my own work. Sigh.... maybe not in this case! hahaha

Thanks.

Good Hondog
Posts: 153
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 6:56 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100 Interstate

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Good Hondog » Sun Aug 04, 2019 7:16 pm

Hi Blarney. Really great GL1100 you have there. One that mint is super rare. Don't ever sell it. As the other poster stated, definitely change the belts first thing. You will want to get a factory shop manual reprint to reference when you're working on it or go to the top of GoldwingDocs webpage and click on manuals to access the GL1100 manuals there. The Markland replacement floorboard rubbers will be tough to find. Your best bet is to watch ebay for the parts you need or if you feel confident making stuff there is another option. Go to Lowes or Home Depot and find some rubber material that has a similar pattern on it and carefully cut your own replacements. Attach them with contact cement after the old surfaces are really well cleaned. The Honda part numbers for the emblems you need are as follows:

87109-463-770 for the big Honda emblems on the sides of the fairing
87111-463-770 for the saddlebag nameplates
83605-463-000 for the Goldwing emblems on the side covers

They are all discontinued now from Honda (I found you some new side cover emblems though) so you will have to search ebay for new ones. It will take a bit of time. I'll PM you the place that still sells new Honda side cover emblems right away. Good luck with your bike and enjoy. Until next time, good rides my friend.

nwkwinger
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:16 pm
Location: Edmond, KS
Motorcycle: 1982 GL1100 Aspencade

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by nwkwinger » Sun Aug 04, 2019 7:32 pm

A couple of months ago, I picked up a 1983 GL1100A. Unfortunately, I haven't had time to do much with it yet. The tires on it look so "new" that there's no wear on them. Going off of the date codes on them, I believe that they were made in 2003. Despite the lack of any wear on them, I WILL NOT be taking them on any rides that are very long or fast. There is a HUGE difference between new and not having had much use. I also wouldn't take a chance on trying to save a few dollars on something as important as timing belts when they may, in fact, be 15 or 20 years old, but not having been used much. Just my opinion. I will also be VERY nervous about riding around on those old tires even at slower speeds.

Blarney77
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:36 pm
Location: United States
Motorcycle: 1981 Honda Goldwing Interstate GL1100i (And 2015 Honda 750 Shadow Aero and 2008 Honda 750 Shadow Spirit)

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Blarney77 » Mon Aug 05, 2019 12:44 pm

Good Hondog wrote:
Sun Aug 04, 2019 7:16 pm
Hi Blarney. Really great GL1100 you have there. One that mint is super rare. Don't ever sell it. As the other poster stated, definitely change the belts first thing.
i WILL change the Timing belt for sure now. Even my wife say better safe than sorry. My quandary is at the moment is that I'm selling my 2007 GW Trike. It's a Lehman Monarch II kit and it's SOOO reliable and runs great, but I'm just not nearly as happy riding a trike as two wheels. It's a great ride and I love that it has a matching trailer and our trip to Deadwood, SD, for the 3-wheel Rally was great, but after 2200 miles in 10 days I was completely beat due to the fact that STEERING a standard trike is a lot more work, even with the Rake kit and steering stabilizer. The Can-Am Spyder is much better on steering, but it's a LOT more money than we want to spend right now. I have a lot more fun on Two Wheels.
However, I can spend the money from the trike to REALLY fix up the '81 and just ride it everywhere. Either way the belts get changed. It IS a great looking bike for 38 years old. I would hate to sell it, but then I COULD buy something newer and more reliable and comfortable.
That's the dilemma. But like you said... it's really a sweet bike for it's age.
But also I'm 6 feet tall with SHORT legs. I cannot put both feet FLAT on the ground sitting on it. Usually I just put my left foot down or both "toes". So again, there is the trouble I have with the old Goldwing. Sits a bit too high for me. But still fun to ride and runs damn good. I'm sooooo torn. But I think I could get a good $2500 for it too. Just gotta decide soon! Thanks for the advice and the links for the parts!

Blarney, Wichita, Ks.

Good Hondog
Posts: 153
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 6:56 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100 Interstate

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by Good Hondog » Mon Aug 05, 2019 1:02 pm

Very big mistake to sell that bike. You'll regret it the second it rides away with the new owner. Trust me when I tell you those 2nd generation Goldwings are going up in value. Just please find a way to keep it somehow. Enjoy it and ride it every chance you get and remember they're basically mechanically bulletproof and their reliability is legendary.

User avatar
monkeymeat
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:21 am
Location: Monmouth, IL
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 Aspencade
2018 Harley FLHTKL

Re: Fixing Up a 1981 GL1100i with ONLY 21K Miles

Post by monkeymeat » Wed Aug 07, 2019 2:32 am

Wow, NICE old Wing you found, Blarney! As someone said earlier, the early models are getting extremely hard to find with mileage that low. Almost what you'd call a "barn find", but yours looks a heck of a lot better. I found what I'm hoping is a similar specimen on Ebay last week with 40k on it. Never bought anything of this magnitude unseen before, but after some discourse back and forth I'm fairly at ease. Still waiting for someone on Uship to bid on the transport, but if need I'll do a day trip and bring it home. Lots of good info here and I'm sure I'll have to pick a couple brains since this is my first Wing. Enjoy that old '81, Blarney, you've got a rare bird that's not even broke in yet -


“God made beer because he loves us and wants us to be happy.” -- Benjamin Franklin

Post Reply