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restored 1981 1100 interstate-mostly town driving until now. moved 40 miles from work-interstate seems to be taxing for old girl-running 4500 rpm at about 65-70 mph. wondering if thats normal or any way to improve highway running- noticed 1200 made gearing changes. rebuilt everything but engine-restored carbs- still have issue with idle drop method-unable to find anything for tach-getting over 40 mpg and seem to run fine except hands asleep when i get to work. thanks
 

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It has been a long time since I owned the 81 Interstate but that rpm sounds about right for that speed. If it is running well that rpm won't hurt the engine. It must be running good or you wouldn't be getting 40 mpg. I don't know why your hands would be numb. They have a little vibration at that speed but I don't remember it being excessive. I did some extensive touring on mine and I always thought it rode well at highway speeds. If it bothers you that much try putting on some softer handgrips.
 

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Its normal for an 81.........Ride It she'll be just fine.....83 is when they made the change and put an overdrive in, dropped it about 500 to 700 rpms ??....at 75 to 80mph I'm doing around 4000 rpms.
 

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for numb and/or cramping hands, the best $15 I've spent was for "Throtle Rockers" from JC Whitney.

Rev's sound about right for highway speed, remember the red line is at 8000 so let her run and enjoy the ride.
 

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I know what you mean, I do the same and will quite happily blat around town for a few hours.

Don't often do highway but when I do it always seems much harder work plus the hearing starts to go lol

I think it's just what you get used to doing
 

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4500 RPM at 65-70 MPH sounds about right for 4th gear but a little high for 5th, I'm thinking that about 3.8-4K for that speed and alittle over80 at 5K, are you sure you're not getting a little bit of clutch slip?
 

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I have an '81 1100I that was just put together by a buddy of mine. I to was concerned about the high revs at highway speeds. I'm told the early 1100s were built for high revs. I routinely travel on highways and in 5th gear at 60mph she's around 4,000-4,100 RPM, and 70MPH around 6,500 RPM. I can run all day at these speed/RPMs and still get 41MPG. They run like theives in the night. Enjoy!!!:cheesygrin:

Stanger55
 

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1987 GL1200 Interstate
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Loose motor mounting can increase the vibration and put the hands to sleep.

First, just loosen your grip a little. Put a throttle lock on it so you can rest your hand on the bar, rather than gripping it.
 

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if your gloves are too tight (short in the fingers/thumb) it will numb your hands. I use both the throttle rocker and a Vista Cruize throttle lock for the open hiway.
 

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4500 RPM'S on a bike with an 8k redline is nothing. It's not even breathin heavy.,,
 

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Big Cahuna wrote:
4500 RPM'S on a bike with an 8k redline is nothing. It's not even breathin heavy.,,
...that's right!

Afterall, it ain't no Thumper. Let that Puppy breath... It'll run like a Swiss watch on fast-forward all day long and like it if you let it.
 

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Bike...and Dennis wrote:
Loose motor mounting can increase the vibration and put the hands to sleep.

First, just loosen your grip a little. Put a throttle lock on it so you can rest your hand on the bar, rather than gripping it.
I'm not a biker, I was never allowed one by my mum and then my wife. Just made me laugh when you said loosen your grip. When I first started I wouldn't even have a scratch, death grip all the way, lol
tho I doubt that is tlcdmc's prob if he's got a restored bike
 

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Relaxed grip is important. Also possibly switching to larger softer grips may help. throttle lock also.
Love that trike trickerbo like to see some more pic's you do the bhild or did you buy it
Wilf

The best thing I did for highway riding. was to strip the 1100 down naked and ride it like that for a while. At first 50 mph seemed fast. but after a week of riding it and getting comfortable on it at 60 mph I switched back to my 79 with fairing and shield. 70 mph seemed like i was sitting still.

Funny thing when I got my 1500 last week I had a hard time riding it above 60 mph! Why you may ask well it was so quite I could hear the engine tranny noises and did not like the sound.

I wore ear plugs and cut the windscreen down 6 " to get ride of the air bubble I was in. Much more comfy now. even dont need the earplugs

Wilf.
 

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Thanks Wilf, I bought it like that but I would do things differently have changed a couple of things, best was the seat
 

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Discussion Starter #16
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the grips that i use are foam type, not rubber-not wearing gloves but might look for pair like motorcross set with grippers on palm-thought about throttle rocker but being old timer,ha, didnt know if they still existed. throttle lock would be like cruz on my car-half traffic going 60 the other half going 80, constantly turning on and off. will check engine mount idea-miss my 1500, had to watch it, it wanted to go 90 mph all the time. still searching for idle drop method from someone to set carb, thank all
 

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1987 GL1200 Interstate
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tlcdmc wrote:
the still searching for idle drop method from someone to set carb, thank all
Idle drop proceedure can be found in the service manual. It may differ from year to year, so it's best to work from the book.
 

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Bob Cassel
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Handle bar position made a world of difference on my tingle fingers. Read about positioning somewhere, tried it and damn, my back's straighter and my hands don't go numb.

Here's the method: Put bike on center stand, sit on it like you would normally sit, close your eyes, raise your hands over your head and drop them (slowly) to the handle bars. Adjust the bars forward of back until they come to rest just right.

Wow, did that ever work!
 

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Your redline is up around 7000rpm plus so you are just getting her into her power band at 4500.
 

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I had an '81 and it ran exactly 4100 RPM's at 60 MPH, so what you are getting seems just right to me.

My current '83 Interstate runs right at 3200 RPM's at 60 MPH, so it seems to be a lot more comfortable on the highway.

With my '81 though, I could get the front tire off the ground in three gears, the '83 won't get it up at all (watch the dirty jokes, fellas).
 
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