GL1500: One Easy, One Harder Problem - Steve Saunders Goldwing Forums

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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Northern FL
Year: 1990
Make: Honda
Model: GL1500
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Exclamation GL1500: One Easy, One Harder Problem

I picked up a nice, unmodified 1990 GL1500 with 55K for a long trip in 2019. Been doing lots of maintenance, but have two problems.

Easy one: I bought LED cornering lights from Cyclemax and want to convert to running lights. One relay on each side connects the cornering light to the turn signals. Supposed to clip the green wire to keep the corner lights always on.

Where is the relay on the left side? All I see is the accumulator.
Which relay on the right side? There's a blue relay with a green wire and a white (ish) relay with a green wire with silver spots...

Harder one: Lousy, awful mileage-- low 20's. It starts and runs fine. Riding 55mph nets me only 24mpg. Can't have a touring bike with that kind of mileage-- not workable.

Read many, many threads. No dragging brakes. Some smell of gas after a ride. Replacing the diaphragm for the fuel supply helped (85% of smell gone). Didn't improve mpg.

New iridium spark plugs coming tomorrow, so I'll see what the stock plugs look like (sooty or brown normal). I've torn it down to removing the airbox while I was in there to replace my cruise and sub filters. Air filter looks brand new.

The airbox seems to have some fuel residue at the bottom. Smells gassy. Twisting the throttle squirts some fuel into the left carb, like an accelerator pump.

I figured some of the vacuum lines could be bad and there are many to choose from. The ones I've replaced so far have been OK.

I know the 90 degree tube bends are most failure prone. Where are they? Do I have to remove the carbs to get at them?

I'm open to suggestions. Really love the Wing, but I've got to sort out this mpg issue over the winter.

Thanks in advance
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 05:36 PM
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The cornering lights to driving lights thing, I installed a relayed circuit panel next to my battery and ran many circuits from it that come on when the bike starts. I did not load down the weak wiring on the bike. I did go led on them. They don't really light up the road far, but they do give me the triangle of light to help the 4 wheelers notice me day or night.

Some of the offending vacuum lines are under the carbs, under the rubber mat. A bit of a PITA to get to, but worth the effort. Made a huge difference on my 95se. I ordered the prebent replacement hoses from Western Honda. I even replaced the rubber mat with a new one.

Don't delete the rubber mat as it serves a purpose. It blocks the engine heat from the carbs. If you have been riding and stop for a quick potty stop and take off again the rubber mat will help keep the carbs from vapor locking (not really the proper term) and making the engine hard to start. That was the intent when mother Honda decided to put it there.

Just my 1.5 cents worth.
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1995 Honda Goldwing GL1500se
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Year: 1990
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Model: GL1500
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Thank you for the fast reply.

I don't want to add any additional circuits for the cornering to driving light conversion. Like you, I just want to add more visibility and the LED bulbs are low amp draw / heat compared to the stock bulbs. The LED bulbs weren't cheap, but plug and play.

If I snip one wire on each side, that's easy to reverse later if wanted. Just need to know where.

If the (likely) offending vacuum lines are under the carb and rubber mat, sounds like there won't be anything simple in my future...

Sigh. The hard thing is that I'm not 100% sure that's what causing the low mileage. But it probably is...
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 07:42 PM
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Both cornering light relays are on the right side, one with a blue connector and one with a white connector.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 08:00 PM
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Hopefully the new plugs will help. Like you mentioned, check the plug tips for black soot. Try running Seafoam with the gas for awhile. I never plan on getting decent gas mileage during the colder winter months. Cold starts, and heavy use of the choke. Especially with the carbureted 1500. Try running alcohol free gas. The 90 degree bend in the hose is top part and rear of engine on left hand side as you sit on it. It does seem to run okay though. Drain the residue catch bottles on left hand side of bike under the front side cover. Nasty stuff that will stain if it gets on floor.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I drained the residue catch bottles the day I got the bike. Looked like that hadn't been done in a long while.

Also pulled the alternator and installed new OEM Honda brushes-- kind of a known weak spot, even without running numerous accessories.

Thanks Dave0430 for the relay explanation. I'll leave enough length to make it simple to undo later if wanted...

The problem with the vacuum line replacement is that it's hard to see / get at each tube terminus. Don't want to pull on anything until I know where it goes (and can reach it).

I'm labeling them 22 WHTE, 2 PINK, etc. to help whoever owns the bike in 25 years.

Lots of folks comment on bad gas, ethanol and so on. I ran Harley Road Kings on that substandard (now standard) gas and typically got in the 40mpg range. I find it hard to believe that the gas alone is responsible for a 50% decrease in mileage.

Granted, going 75-80 mph will never be good for gas mileage either, but if I'm relegated to 55 mph for decent mileage, I should ride a Vino 125...
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by C8Chris View Post
Thanks.

Thanks Dave0430 for the relay explanation. I'll leave enough length to make it simple to undo later if wanted...
Read the pm I just sent you......!!
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 09:50 PM
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going 75-80 mph will never be good for gas mileage either, but if I'm relegated to 55 mph for decent mileage, I should ride a Vino 125...


The 1500 just wont give you the mileage your looking for at that speed,the ones that have owned them for a long tine know that over 3000 rpm the fuel mileage suffers,it takes fuel to make horsepower and pushing the big bike throug the wind just takes more hp,mine will get 42-45 keeping the rpms at 3000 and around 70 mpg.i use injection cleaner in mine ever few tanks and don’t let it set too long without running it,to keep the carbs clean.

Love chasing white lines but they are difficult to catch.Hate drivers with no STOPLIGHTS.

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 10:23 PM
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I've never even ridden a 6 cyl GL, but that gas mileage is just wrong. Check the airfilter for restrictions, If it is old just change it anyway.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-17-2018, 01:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C8Chris View Post
Twisting the throttle squirts some fuel into the left carb, like an accelerator pump.

Big problem right here.


those jets are from the Accelerator pumps.


both carbs should get an equal amount of fuel spray when you open the slides fast.


the carbs need to be removed and cleaned.
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