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I've recently bought a 1981 Honda Goldwing GL1100 with ~13,800 miles. The bike is very good cosmetically and seems to be very sound mechanically, except....when I got it, it would not accelerate well or idle. It had the carbs rebuilt last year but the owner had not ridden it since. I'm working a couple of cans of fuel injector cleaner through a tank of new gas. That seems to be helping acceleration - gets better every time I ride it. The idle has improved somewhat but it will still stall at stops. Any opinions on whether the injector cleaner will clean out the idle jets? Also, what is a reasonable 5th gear speed/RPM? I'm able to get ot 65-75 easily. The RPMs are aound 4,000. IS that too high? Any suggestions on how fast is a resonable cruising speed? 65? 75? I've had low revving cruisers int he pastand this bike feels like it is revving too high at 65 - is that just a characteristic of the bike? I appreciate all comments, thoughts, suggestions.
 

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Some injector cleaners might work but the go to stuff is Seafoam.
Don't worry about the RPMs, that is the norm. It won't hurt a thing to run it as fast as you want to go all day.
 

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:waving:Hello and Welcome . The 1100 series is a real durable bike . IF it sat very long it might actually need the carbs removed and cleaned . Not what you wanted to hear I suppose , but there are so many small jets and circuits in those carbs that injector cleaner may not do it alone . Some folks use SeaFoam others use MarvelMysteryOil all of these can help but do not replace a thorugh cleaning . Your RPM is not bad . This engine loves to rev . I hope you soon have it so it will idle without stalling . Ride often and be safe .:action:
 

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And if you ran something like Gumout through the carbs, then you'll NEED to have them rebuilt. That stuff eats the rubber seals, gaskets, and diaphragms in the carbs almost instantly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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Hi Mike, how are you? Thanks for the response. I'm almost afraid top ask - what about STP fule injector cleaner? Does that eat carb rubber also?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
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Thanks to all for their responses. Actually, I do have a can of Seafoam. I was waiting until I ran through the tank with the fuel injector cleaner before I tried that. Since it is just the carbs (I think), is there any reason to add Seafoam to anything other than the fuel? The bike does actually seem to be running better - still not idling perfectly but better. Honestly, I'm not sure I will recognize correct carb idling - I'm too used to fuel injection.



Any opinions on pulling the carbs myself and boiling them? Do they need to be disassembled to boil? I can likely pull them and take them apart - but putting them back together again would bebeyond me - way beyond me.I may study up and attempt it this winter once I put it up.
 

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Col, I too, bought an 1100 standard a few weeks ago. Same carb problems, rough idle, but would run well above 2500 rpm. I have used Seafoam in the past, so my solution was to remove the fuel inlet line from the fuel pump, (be sure the tank valve is turned off) installed a 24" fuel line from the pump to a can of Seafoam. Started the bike, ran it for a few minutes, until it had pulled approx 1/2 can of Seafoam into the carbs. Let it set about an hour, re-installed the original fuel line, and cranked it up.

It idles much better. There was a little flat spot at around 1600 rpm, that is working out, as I put the rest of the Seafoam into the fuel tank gasoline.

My reasoning was in this manner I could get a high concentrate of cleaner into the idle jets for cleaning. If it had not worked, I would have had to tear them down for rebuild anyway. All I had to loose was a can of Seafoam and the cost ($3) for the additional fuel line. :)
 

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My GL1100 was running but would not idle well/stalled. Iturned off the gas and ran the engine until it quit/all the gas was out of the line. I attached a line from a can of seafoam to the fuel pump and ran the starter to pull some into the carbs. After letting it sit I re-attached the fuel, turned it on, but can't get the bike to start/fire. Any suggestions? Any tricks to re-introducing fuel to carbs that had all the fuel run out? Thanks


 

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With a full tank the fuel should flow pretty good. You might try pressurizing the tank a bit. Full choke and just keep cranking.
 

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I'm not 100% sure on STP carb and injector cleaner, but I can't help but think it's pretty much the same stuff as Gumout...And just as abrasive to the rubber inside the carbs.

If you bought an '81 with 13,800 miles on it, you bought someone's garage queen, for that, I'm going to recommend giving this thread:

Resurrecting An Old Goldwing

A good read, and checking deeply into some of the things I've mentioned there. Those things were written from my experiences after leaving my poor 1100 sitting for 5 years unattended, and my labors in getting her back to roadworthy again.

I do know this much. Old Goldwings have pretty fragile egos. If you leave them unattended for a few years, they get all depressed, and then they start self-harming (as in eating their own gaskets and whatnot), once that starts, stopping it will be frustrating for awhile, because it will seem like you just got one thing fixed, and another cropped up...But once you get it all worked out, you won't find a better motorcycle out there for longevity, endurance, and ride-ability...As long as you stroke her ego for at least a thousand or so miles every season

Reintroducing gas to the system...my recommendation here would be replace the fuel filter (I'll bet it's full of rust and crap), then drop the fuel line from the tank to the fuel filter into a clean 5 gallon gas can full of clean gas, pull the choke full, and crank on her until she fires...she will...it'll just take some time.

Why the gas can? Simple, I have a $20 bill in my wallet that says the inside of your tank has a nice coating of rust on it that you'll need to contend with, and until that is taken care of, any gas you put in the tank will be contaminated, and will pick up flecks of rust and jam them into the filter, particles smaller than 2 microns will pass through the filter, and clot up in the smaller passages of all 4 carbs.
 

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col_freecycle---- good advise here from MDKramer ! i`ll second that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
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I appreciate all the responses and apologize for the multiple posts. I'll stick to this one thread. The good news is that the previous owner seems to have done all the resurrection work (I have the receipt for the work done to include the carb re-build.) The bad news is he let it sit for a year. The bike was starting immediately prior to my introducing the seafoam - and running stronger all the time with the fule injector cleaner, just not idling well.The direct injection of the seafoam was a last ditch effort to get the idle jets cleaned without going to a mechanic.



I expected to have to work the starter to get the gas back into the carbs to get the bike to start once I re-hooked up the gas, I just wanted to be sure barring the unforseen that I hadn't done something that absoutely/certainly made things worse.It seems to want to start but hasn't fired yet.



I haven't ignored the excellent advice about draining the carb bowls. I tried to drain thems but could not get to the screws (only regular normal screwdrivers plusno garage - live in a townhouse.)Here is what defeated me from getting to the drain screws (excuse me while I mangle nomenclature.) There are what look like 90 degree elbow joints coming off each carb that connect to the cylinder heads? I pulled the three bolts and screw on one and loosened the clamp around the rubber hose connecting the elbow to the carb but I could not remove the elbow. I was worried I would break something and put it all back together and went back to hoping I can cycle fuel into the carbs by working the starter. I'm hoping to see it start as soon as the battery is recharged. Should it still not start, is starter fluid a good option or a bad idea? I saw one post that recommended WD-40 (I didn't know that would act as starter fluid.) I believe once I have cycled the seafoam out and the engine fires and starts drawing gas that I may be through this particular set of woods.



If anyone thinks I am dreaming and can provide hints on getting at the drain bowl screws/removing the elbow joints I' appreciate it. If I candetermine thatthis will run well enough to keep I'll post a request for suggestions on basic motorcycle tools and opionions on helpful manuals.
 

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When you take the bolts and clamps loose on the intake (elbow), remove the bolts from the other one on the same side, that way you can lift up on the intake, twist it, and while twisting, pull.

It'll take some muscle, and you're not going to break anything. The rubber boot between the intake and carb is pretty thick, and if it's old and weather checked, there's a chance it could rip...but it's not likely at all.

Have you checked the tank for rust and contaminates?
 

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If the bowls are on the right carbs you should be able to get at the brass drain screw just inside the intake runners (those aluminum tubes). If the intake runners cover the bowls it means someone put the bowls on the wrong carbs. That won't hurt the running of the engine but the carb bowls were designed with offset drains so that when the right bowls are on the correct carbs you can get at the drains.
 

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Drain the bowls of the seafoam and then pump in new gas and start .
 

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In addition, may want to pull the plugs, clean them, spin the motor over with the plugs out to clear the chambers, install the plugs and then try it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
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Thanks for the advice on removing the bolts from both intakes and muscling - worked like a champ and I got the bowls drained. I don't see any sediment/rust in the tank - but its not factory perfect either. The floor of the plenum was wet/moist with gas so I believe gas was getting to the carbs. Is there any chance I have flooded the carbs - based on the gas in the plenum? I hate to ask but does that mositness indicate s stuck float?

I'm getting ready to check the plugs but have a question on re-starting. If the carbs were flooded, will having drained the bowls solve that? Would it help to cycle the starter with the fuel turned off to remove some of the remaining gas - when I say cycle I mean work the starter (a few seconds at a time) until the battery is dead and re-charge.

Once I am ready to re-start, I will pull the choke the whole way out (and stay off the throttle.) Should I leave it all the way out until/if it starts? Should I remove the trays and air filter to allow more air in?

Based on the gas in the plenum I'm going to hold off on pouring any (more) gas into it, and will also hold off on the starter fluid. If I can't get it to start on the next battery charge, assuming I am getting spark, fuel, etc. Is starter fluid the next logical option. If I see new mositness/gas in the plenum would that indicate a stuck float? If I see new mositness/gas in the plenum is it wise to try starter fluid or should I get a fire extinguisher first? Appreciate all the help - apologize for all the questions.
 

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A little trick I use to check a cylinder that isn't firing is this, as the bike is running I remove the sync screw from the manifold of the cylinder in question and shoot WD-40 through it. If the plug has spark then it usually starts running when the WD-40 is sprayed into the screw hole.

You may try this too to get it started long enough for the fuel pump to refill the carbs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
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Thanks to all for the advise - drained the bowls, checked the plugs (clean), and fuel filter (clean) - and fired the bike right up. Although it seems to be running better and idles with less choke, it still doesn't want to idle without the choke.



I think I have two choices:



1) tear into the existing carbs and suffer the ensuing costs or

2) research a single carb setup (LDWINGNUTS?). If anyone has any thoughts, suggestions, opinions I'd be glad to hear it - I'm following the existing single carb threads on the site.
 
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