Starting From Scratch

My “new” bike arrived a few days ago.  It’s a vintage 1985 Honda Goldwing GL1200 with pretty much all of the bells and whistles, at least those available at the time of its manufacture.  This is going to be a new experience for me since all of my previous bikes were pretty much basic.  Even the Then Came Bronson replica (pictured in my “About Me” postjust had the bare basics.  This bike has things I never knew existed on a bike, such as an air compressor to manually raise or lower the front or the back, or to tap into with the supplied air hose to add air to the tires.  It also has an automatic leveling system that operates while you’re riding.  Even the cargo box (helmet box to me) has a mirror built into the inside of its lid.  When it was new the hard-sided saddlebags each had their own duffel bag sized to have a snug fit.  What a great idea!  I’ll have to see if I can find a couple of those.

If one were to just look at the bike they’d assume it’s road ready.  That’s pretty close to right, but since it hasn’t been ridden for at least 2 years there’s a few things I want to address before taking it for a decent ride.  The battery is pretty much shot so it will have to be the first thing taken care of so I can do a thorough check of other things.  I don’t trust old brake pads so they’ll need to be replaced.  Same with the fuel lines.  I’m thinking about switching the current ones out with the braided stainless steel mesh lines.  They’ll stand up better to the engine heat.  Besides, they look cool!  lol  The tires appear to be in good condition.  I topped off the air in both of them when the bike arrived.  So far they’re holding steady.  Other than checking the air and the tread I don’t know much about tires so I’ll have a local shop check them for dry rot, balance, and/or other problems before I ride.  Safety first you know.  Of course we can’t forget about the motor and drive oil(s).  There is no sign of any type of fluid leak where the bike’s been parked, so that’s a good sign, however I’ll change both of those fluids and lubricate the rear drive splines before taking any rides just to be on the safe side.  Internal damage is something I certainly don’t want.  The last two things I want to address before riding are the emergency flashers and the foot rests.  The turn signals work, but the flashers don’t.  I guess that’s a fuse or flasher unit problem.  The front foot rests are both loose enough to wiggle around, yet the back ones are fine.  I have to wonder why only the front ones would be loose.  You’d think all 4 would be in the same shape.  Doesn’t matter.  They’ll get tightened, but it seems a bit strange.

Everything else I want to address at one time or another is purely cosmetic.  The previous owner somehow lost the lid to the left saddle bag and replaced it with the only one he could find, a maroon one.  Ewww.  I’ll have to either paint it or find a correct replacement.  The same thing goes with the battery cover.  The one on the bike is a shade of grey.  Not primer grey but a glossy, clear coated grey.  Go figure.  When I first looked at the bike I noticed the trailer wiring harness hanging down and assumed it had just come loose.  Not so.  The plug has been broken just forward of where it attached to the bike, so a new plug is called for.  If possible I would like to go with a metal plug this time.  The right mirror is broken on the little ball-mount that would normally allow it to swivel.  Right now it’s glued in place.  Luckily it’s adjusted correctly for me, but when time and money allow I’ll replace it so it will operate correctly.  The small gold plastic trim is missing in a couple of places.  These appear to be what was laying in the cargo box but I haven’t tried to fit them into the places where pieces are missing.   It they’re the right pieces I’ll put a few dabs of silicone on them so they won’t come loose again.  The only other thing is one of the latches for the cargo box is broken off.  I’m not talking about the lock body, which still works and is in place, but the little tab it clamps to. The tab was inside the cargo box also so I’ll check around to see which adhesive is best to use for this application.  Since the lock body is in place it doesn’t look like there is a problem there, so it doesn’t look bad.  The paint and everything else is in good shape and original to the bike.  Well, maybe the windscreen isn’t original.  If memory serves me correctly the original ‘Wing windscreen was shorter so this bike may have an aftermarket one.  I know some of these things I want to correct sound nit-picky but I want my bike to look, and operate, good.  My previous 2 bikes received their upkeep/maintenance much more often than their owner manuals recommended, therefore I never had one bit of trouble with them.  This one will be treated with the same loving care.

Hope you’ll check back to see how all this works out as well as following the things discussed on the “Purpose” page.

Happy (and safe) Riding!

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4 thoughts on “Starting From Scratch

  1. Pingback: A New Battery | Dixie Riders

  2. Pingback: Stymied | Dixie Riders

  3. Can’t wait to read more of your adventures! While I am learning to ride I will have to live vicariously through you until I am “street legal”.
    Keep up the good work and be careful out there!!

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