Bikers Workshop Series

GL1800 Rubbing Trunk Lid Fix.

By Steve Saunders.


In the first production year of the Honda GL1800 Goldwing, several gremlins reared their ugly heads in the new motorcycle. One of the most common complaints was the trunk lid rubbing against the base. Eventually the little wear tabs on the base would wear down enough so that the side edges of the lid would rub against the base and wear the paint off your expensive Goldwing and Honda know how to charge for these items. The most common cure for this (and I've no idea who initiated it in the first place, but I know it wasn't Honda) was soon doing the rounds on the Goldwing forums. This involved inserting a thin hose inside the rubber weatherstrip on the inside of the trunk lid. The thin hose favoured was the type that is found attached to the filter pumps in fish tanks.
Like many other GL1800 owners, I got hold of some of the hose and did the job. It worked fine - for a few months. Eventually, the weight of the pillion passenger and the trunk spoiler made the lid sink again and I removed the rubber hose and just put in a new one in the nick of time. It was still in the Goldwing when I sold it, but I decided that a stronger tube would be needed for my next GL1800. Read on for the new cure.

Click the thumbnails for a bigger image.


The first picture here shows the soft green fish tank hose (comes in different colours) that I used previously and the firmer black petrol hose that I now prefer to use for this job. The fish tank hose is 6mm outer diameter (4.8mm inner diameter) which is very similar to the plastic tubing used for motorcycle battery overflow. The petrol hose is 7mm diameter (3.5mm inner diameter), this means that the petrol hose is firmer and a bit fatter than the weaker green stuff.
The second picture show the hose I took out of my 01 GL1800 Goldwing (on left of picture) and you can see how it was squashed from use, compare it to a new piece of the same hose beside it. This stuff eventually just goes out of shape and spreads out into an oval shape, allowing the trunk lid to settle down again and do a nice job of rubbing away your paint. You can also see a piece of the black 7mm petrol hose which is much firmer. Gates 3225 or similar is what you need. Those of you who have used the fish tank hose and are happy with it should stick with it if it works (I'm not out to convert anyone). If you are dissatisfied with it then you will find the 7mm petrol hose is the permanent answer.

Here is the new hose being shoved through from the right side of the Goldwing. Some WD40 or similar on the hose first makes it easier to insert. Tip; You don't want the hose to go all the way around (it will go almost half-way before getting stubborn, pushing it all the way around may make the lid difficult to close) you only need it to go as far as the sides anyway, so only push it as far as you can into the sides and then cut the hose. Then just insert the rest of the hose into the weatherstrip from the left side. When you can feel it all along the side of the weatherstrip just cut it off as well.

After the job is done, see if the lid will close the same as it did before, ie a gentle drop from 75-100mm or with a gentle push on the lid. If you have to slam the lid to close it, just adjust the two latches in the GL1800 LID down a bit and this will give a perfect fit. The two pictures here show my 03 trunk lid gaps, over a year since I fitted the new hose and the gap is still perfectly even all the way around. I've fitted the same 7mm hose to several GL1800's (some with the added weight of a spoiler, rack and handle on the lid) and they are all still "gapped" perfectly.