Retired Nuclear Engineer
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Dresden, OH, USA
Model: GL1800 Navi/Comfort
Not Exactly a Newbie
Hello to everyone. I guess I'm supposed to post an introduction here, so I'm happy to do that. I've been on the board before and found useful info when I needed it. I'm just now about to retire, so I'll have more time to pay attention to forums like this than I ever have in the past. I have what Scott Adams calls in his Dilbert cartoon "the knack"; there's not much that I haven't been able to fix, and that ranges from plumbing to electronics to cars/bikes to diesel engines to custom engine swapping (I put a '59 Cadillac 390 in into a 1960 Rambler station wagon) - and everything in between. I retired from the Air Force in 1977 with a MS in nuclear engineering. I'm now retiring from higher education with another 20 years there. But my adventures with Gold Wings started in 1975 when I was a cop in Houston, Texas.
I had Hondas from the time I was 14. I started with a cub 50, then to a sport 50. Then onto a Super 90, followed by a CB450, and then with a 74 CB750 (what an amazing bike!) Then when I heard that Honda was coming out with the GW 1000 in 1975, I couldn't wait for the local dealer to get one in. I test drove it and fell in love, and bought one when I was only 21. I had that bike for 3 years and put 70,000 miles on it! I'm attaching photos - happy that I still have them and amazed that time goes by so fast! I really dressed out the '75 including adding air horns.
After I sold the '75, the local dealer hooked me up with a slightly used '78, and I got it. Soon after I got it, my club was going to head from southern Mississippi to Talledega to see the races, and the club pres offered his bolt-on handlebar-mounted windshield for me to use for the trip. It was designed for a 750, but we got it to work. Sort of. The aerodynamics were terrible, and made the bike hard to handle. Hard enough that a strong gust of wind sent me off the edge of the pavement and it flipped before it stopped. After the Honda shop put it back together - and after my separated shoulder healed - I was back on the road. The newer Wings had ditched the chrome front fenders for ABS, and I opted to get a matching black front fender. It really made the bike look nice.
But then I kept looking at the '85 Limited Edition 1100 in the showroom, and I couldn't resist. What an amazing bike - way before its time! I had it for a couple of years, and then a new family and expenses made me have to sell it. I still have the matching jacket that came with the bike, and I'm always proud to wear it! And like the jacket, I still see '85s on the road, and I can't help but wonder if one if them is the one I used to have.
Then I went 20 years without a bike, but I got the itch again in 2008. I shopped around, and found a 2006 on Ebay with only 3000 miles on it for $18,000. I was in Toledo, OH, and the bike was in Salt Lake City, UT, but I bought it, flew out to Utah, and then drove the bike 1800 miles back to Ohio over 3 days. I don't ride as much as I used to be able to, since I live in Ohio now instead of Mississippi, and the riding season is limited to the whims of the weather, but I've put 27,000 miles on it in the 11 years that I've had it. It's been mostly trouble-free with the exception of the nav screen starting to go bad last year, which was a pain to replace, but doable for those of us who have "the knack."
I've attached photos of my 4 Gold Wings. I'm proud of all of them, and amazed that I bought my first one 44 years ago! How can that be!?
Last edited by RandyWharton; 05-14-2019 at 10:36 AM.