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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all. First time GW owner here. Been lurking on the forums for a while but could not find a correct answer to my problem.

I picked up a 1981 gl1100i on trade. Had been sitting for who knows how many years. It has about 35k miles so I started to go through it.

Compression is around 160psi ±5 between all the cylinders. Have replaced coils, plugs, wires, battery, tires, rebuilt the carb with new cut off valves and new accelerator pump and polished the slides. I disassembled and boiled the carbs and was able to take out the pressed in idle jets and clean them properly, set float height to 15.5mm. Carbs have been synced, and idle drop adjustment has been done for the mixture screws. I checked and adjusted the valves for .004 intake and .005 exhaust. I cleaned the tank, installed new fuel filter and verified good flow from the pump. I have done everything except check the timing as I am expecting to replace the belts soon because of unknown age and condition.

The bike starts on first crank every time. Idles perfect around 950-1000rpm and throttle response is amazing and she revs to the moon while in neutral. When in gear it's another story. Went around the block a few times and there is a hesitation/bog/miss under load if leaving from a stop sign etc. Also it seems to hesitate/bog and buck a little while cruising at lower RPMs. I can throttle through eventually and it will scream like a banshee. Keep in mind it only does this in gear under a load. In neutral it revs perfect.

I have checked and verified smooth slide operation with a mirror, taken the carbs off double check accelerator pump function in all 4 carb throats. All the cylinders heat up evenly and all my plugs are a light brown/tan color. I have sucked on the vacuum hose on the #3 carb and can hear the advance mechanism move.

I cannot determine if this is a fuel issue, spark issue, timing issue or drive train issue.

I have not verified timing yet because I am hoping to get it atleast running right before I buy the belts and disassemble it. Is there any chance that being off by one tooth could cause off idle problems under load, with no other noticeable effects?

Does anyone happen to know of anything else I can check?

Thanks for reading and sorry for the long post. Wanted to give as much info as I could.
 

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Probably air jets plugged. Pull the caps and slides, underneath is a kidney shaped plastic piece, remove it. Under it is an air jet to the main jet tower. If you spray carb cleaner in that jet it should bubble up in the hole where the slide needle goes.
 
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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Probably air jets plugged. Pull the caps and slides, underneath is a kidney shaped plastic piece, remove it. Under it is an air jet to the main jet tower. If you spray carb cleaner in that jet it should bubble up in the hole where the slide needle goes.
I will do that when I get home from work. Anything else I can check while I'm in there? Thanks
 

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Piaggio MP3, was 02 GL1800
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Boiled in distilled water on my grill.
Not good enough, you need to put them in an UltraSonic bath with a strong soap or cleaner.

Many years ago, I used Simple Green for cleaning Electronic Parts in radios that lived in Diesel trucks.
worked very well for that application.
 

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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Not good enough, you need to put them in an UltraSonic bath with a strong soap or cleaner.

Many years ago, I used Simple Green for cleaning Electronic Parts in radios that lived in Diesel trucks.
worked very well for that application.
I do not have an ultrasonic cleaner, I read that boiling them was the next best thing. I blew carb cleaner and air through every hole I could get the nozzle on. If checking the air jets yields no results and I don't really have the money to fork out for an ultrasonic cleaner, I could use the simple green in another boil.

What are some things I can do to verify the carbs are 100%? So I don't have to pull these darn carbs, disassemble, clean, reassemble and sync and install again after another boil.
 

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If you look close you can see where all the passages go, make sure they are clean & the float levels are set correctly. This may help.
 

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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you look close you can see where all the passages go, make sure they are clean & the float levels are set correctly. This may help.
Thanks for that. I have the floats set dead on at 15.5mm (I did a ton of research before I started working on the bike).

I just verified that the air jets are clear.
While I have the caps off, I am going to go ahead and put my old slide needles and needle holders back in. I'm wondering if the ones I put in from my rebuild kit have just a slight size difference from the originals that is causing the problem.
 

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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The OEM parts are better, the After Market repair kits often do not work properly
Truer words have not been spoken.
Sure enough, I put my old slide needles and needle holders in.

She runs absolutely perfect now.

You have no idea how happy I am to not be a troll in my garage, over obsessing over getting this thing running right. I am so happy.
Thank you all.
 

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Thanks for that. I have the floats set dead on at 15.5mm (I did a ton of research before I started working on the bike).

I just verified that the air jets are clear.
While I have the caps off, I am going to go ahead and put my old slide needles and needle holders back in. I'm wondering if the ones I put in from my rebuild kit have just a slight size difference from the originals that is causing the problem.
Don't ever use aftermarket jets etc. The jets are never the right size even if they have the same #s on them.
 

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1981 GL1100
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Don't ever use aftermarket jets etc. The jets are never the right size even if they have the same #s on them.
Funny thing is, I only bought the kit for the orings, bowl gaskets, float needles and seats, and because it came with the air cutoff valves. I ended up using the slide needles and needle holders just because they looked shiny. I didn't even attempt to use the jets the kit it came with. All the stuff I needed fit. So it was worth the price I think.

Man, I removed those carbs from that bike probably 10 times chasing this issue. And I've only had it for a week. You best bet I'm a pro at removing them now.

Blind fold me, hand me a Phillips head screw driver, a 10mn socket, extension and ratchet and give me 2 minutes.
 
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