Monday, March 5, 2012

Wing - A - Ding....A Naked Thing!

I've always been intrigued by the older "naked" Honda Goldwings. I remember drooling over one back in the early 80's. I never looked too hard for one since I've been somewhat of a "BMW Guy" for the past 20 years.
Well recently the planets aligned and next thing I know I have this sitting in my yard. A 1977 GL1000 Gold Wing. From what I can figure it started the 21st. Century as a forgotten derelict. A new owner bought it and brought it back to life from the frame up.

The 2nd. owner who refurbished it kept logs on all work and repairs, which included a fresh 1978 model engine about 12000 miles ago. One log book recorded every fuel fill up and the MPG attained.
The major rebuild was completed in 2007 and only 14k miles have been run up since.

Jardine Headers were installed, new Progressive suspension front & rear, new paint. Also new cam belts and carb synchronization 1600 miles ago. The Progressive Springs are pretty stiff so it isn't an "air ride" but is positive in the corners.

We picked the bike up in Lake Havasu Az. and I couldn't help but ride it the 160 miles back to our place. The bike performed flawlessly and has more torque / power than anything I've ever ridden. I filled it up after arriving home and pulled off 45 MPG at 55 - 70 MPH. Had a lot of traffic and construction on the 2 lane so couldn't really stretch her legs. One open stretch brought me up to 85 MPH with hardly a twist of the wrist.

The only problem I've found is a non-functioning fuel gauge so I'll be sorting that out in the future. My biggest complaint is the high handle bars. After 20 years on BMW's I'm more attuned to a more forward riding position. Unfortunately the control wiring is threaded into the handlebars so bar swapping will be a major pain in the ass. I adjusted them back so now they don't feel like frikken "ape hangers".....but still sort of look like them.

It is a fairly heavy machine but due to the low center of gravity the weight doesn't really reflect.

Some of the engine clear coat has shed from the valve covers and cam covers....maybe I'll strip it off to raw metal....but likely I'll just leave it be. Asthetics aren't my top priority.

Included were a stack of books, shop manuals, records, plus spare parts: Rear rack, crash bars, floor boards, the stock seat, new brake pads and a bunch of other small items.

Realistically I got this bike for a possible future sidecar tug. The water cooled engine is a good candidate for sidecar duty. That might be in its' future but for now, it will be a solo road cruiser.

My wife hasn't been too keen on riding pilion for the past years so I threw on a windscreen and back rest. The bike came with a luggage rack so it was installed and attached a backrest for her sake. We ran 20 miles on the Interstate but she still isn't too thrilled about riding on the back of a bike. I removed the backrest after the ride but left the rack mounted as I will use it. At some point I'll find some soft saddle bags for storage. I had an extra set of windscreen mounts so I'll leave them on the bike so I can swap the windscreen between the sidecar and the Goldwing. The windscreen really is great on the highway.
We rode over Telegraph Pass right outside our door and encountered real high winds coming back. The heavy bike was very stable in the high winds. More stable than any bike I've ever ridden.

I am very impressed with this machine as a highway cruiser. Very effortless to ride.

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Gila Mtns.

Gila Mtns.