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In a word, NO, you don't actually NEED the push cable.
Now then, for the sake of safety, you're much better off HAVING it.
Consider it your backup return spring. Should the carb-body mounted throttle return spring fail in any way, your throttle will not close on its own. If the spring fails while you're on the throttle (99.9% chance as opposed to .1% chance of failure while sitting at idle...i'm being sarcastic here, you'll not noticed spring failure until after you've opened the throttle and released it,) the engine RPM won't simply roll back to an idle, and this can be dangerous. Thanks to that push cable, you can close the throttle without even letting go of the handle bars.
 

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Vintage Rider
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The answer is no, though many will disagree. I converted my Vulcan 750, XT225, and former Rebel 250 to single cables and they worked just fine, in fact the throttle felt much better, and would "snap back" better when released. One cable opens the throttle, the spring on the carb linkage closes it. The "push" cable finally broke on my '85 1200, and I removed it as well. Runs fine that way, and the throttle has a lighter pull.

Many will say that it is there for safety reasons, and under the right circumstances it might help. But it could actually make the setup LESS safe if that "push" cable became stuck. If the main cable breaks, the spring should instantly close the throttle. If the main cable gets stuck, the kill switch is right there by your right thumb. It's up to you whether you want to run it that way or not, but MANY Japanese motorcycles and pretty much all cars that used cable throttles were made with a single cable, and I've never heard of any problems associated with such a design.

I do recommend consistent maintenance of the throttle system.
 

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I wonder why they call it a push cable, when in reality, they both pull.
I also wonder if Toyota wished they had a "push" cable.................
 

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I wonder if Toyota wishes they had a cable at all. All their problems seem to have been caused by their "fly by wire" system, where there is no direct mechanical linkage of any kind between the throttle and fuel injection system. Cables and rod linkage systems can be visually inspected and maintained, computers cannot.
 

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Honda Guru
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Back in 'the old days' when I used to race my CB750 at Willow Springs I thought I'd run with only the 'pull' cable. First time on the track I noticed that when I would let off the throttle the rpm's wouldn't drop down…. they sort of hung up and made shifting very difficult.
So I reinstalled the 'push' cable and the shifting and rpm's returned to normal. In my case the answer was YES the push cable was required.
 

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Vintage Rider
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Back in 'the old days' when I used to race my CB750 at Willow Springs I thought I'd run with only the 'pull' cable. First time on the track I noticed that when I would let off the throttle the rpm's wouldn't drop down…. they sort of hung up and made shifting very difficult.
So I reinstalled the 'push' cable and the shifting and rpm's returned to normal. In my case the answer was YES the push cable was required.
I'd say either the throttle, "pull" cable", or carb linkage was binding a bit, OR the throttle return spring may not have been strong enough. While all my bikes work fine with the one cable, there is a possibility that the manufacturer made the spring weaker when they use 2 cables, or an old spring could be worn, and possibly about to break. On my '64 Fairlane I replaced the throttle spring a one a lot stronger. Made it harder to push on the pedal, but no worries about the throttle not closing. I like things simple (see signature) so anytime I can safely simplify things, I usually do
 

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1985 GL1200 Limited Edition
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I wonder if Toyota wishes they had a cable at all. All their problems seem to have been caused by their "fly by wire" system, where there is no direct mechanical linkage of any kind between the throttle and fuel injection system. Cables and rod linkage systems can be visually inspected and maintained, computers cannot.

That's exactly what the goverment driven news media would like you to believe.... The reality is most sticking accelerator problems were caused by the accelerator pedal being trapped by unsecured floor mats which is why there was the recall to trim the accelerator pedal.

And as far as "unintended acceleration"?? I believe that the transmission downshifting while going on a downgrade caused the illusion that the vehicle was speeding up when the engine revved up while actually slowing the vehicle..

Yes I've read the articles about people getting killed like the police officer and his family in the Lexus... What happened there and in other cases is very sad but I've not read one instance where the "Fly by Wire" system was at fault....

How do I know this? Being as I had just bought a 2010 Tundra I did a ton of research on the subject... And I'm STILL not convinced the vehicle systems were at fault........


BTW, Them Tundra's like the snow.....
 

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I am pretty sure that was a government (US) mandated safety item, just like the kill switch.
 

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well in cars you have bumpers fenders door skins on bike you have your skin!
 

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Just Winging It
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I had a cm400e. The cables were bad so I replaced the pull only. The throttle did get stuck at one point I used the kill switch, stopped and manually closed the throttle. I called it character and said she gets fussy sometimes. Nothing a little spray oil won't fix.

If you don't put a push cable on be sure you practice using the kill switch you won't have much time to think about it when you need it.
 

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Premium Member
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One plus to having the push cable is that when your pull cable breaks, with a little MacGyver you can swap the push to the pull and get home. It worked for me last summer. Involved a little black tape and vise grips, I think. That said, you could also buy two pull cables and keep the other stashed for when it breaks.
 

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Funny isn't it, most of us here like Goldwings which means we like the designer and engineering that goes into them. I'm sure those Honda engineers really didn't know what they were doing adding that second throttle cable. Why any shade tree mechanic knows it's not needed. That second cable only gives positive control of the throttles, anyone should know that's not needed. I'm sure we all agree that a broken throttle spring or a broken strand in a throttle cable jamming the throttle cable isn't a big deal. A real biker can always overcome those little problems when they occur in a crowded parking lot. C'mon folks get real.
 

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I'd say either the throttle, "pull" cable", or carb linkage was binding a bit, OR the throttle return spring may not have been strong enough.
Have you ever seen the throttle return spring on a K2 CB750?? It could be used as a clutch spring on a Chevy 4 speed. It was plenty strong enough….. remember… I was RACING this bike on a track. Throttle cable(s) are checked for proper return during tech inspection. The pull cable was needed on this bike…. it helped the rpm to return.
 

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I'll get out of this one before it gets too hot for me. But I would like to say one last thing. I have a 2001 Yamaha XT225, and a 1994 XT225 parts bike. The '94 came from the factory with a single cable throttle. The '01 came with a dual cable throttle. They have the same carbs (except for the pulley that the cable(s) attach to, including the same spring (part# is the same). I have the '01 carb set up so the bike runs right, and the '94 carb set up to pass an emissions test (so I don't have to mess with my adjustments) and swap them out every year at test time. The throttles work the same with one cable. Everything else is the same. The '94 design used one cable, the '01 used 2 cables. No other differences. Does that mean the '94 design is no good and unsafe?


I have never needed to use the kill switch in an emergency, but I use it every day I ride the bike. Any bike. I always warm up my bikes, because I don't believe in putting a load on a cold engine. When the engine is warm, I flip the kill switch to kill the engine, shift it into gear, then restart it in gear. This breaks the clutch loose after it has been sitting overnight, so the first shift in the morning is not done with the clutch still engaged. Plus it keeps me familiar with using the kill switch.

I love the Goldwing design overall, but I have an old one, and there are a few design issues. I have an LTD, or what is left of one, but would have been happier with a base Interstate, which Honda also designed. Then there are the well known 1200 charging system issues. And then there are the linked brakes, which I disliked enough to redesign. I want full and independent control of the brakes. I saw no issues in making them like the brakes on nearly any other bike. And have had no problems with them.

The GL1200 is the best bike (design wise) I have ever owned, But it does have a few faults. No manufacturer makes an absolutely perfect bike. I've said before I wish Honda had continued to refine the four cylinder instead of coming out with the six. But, on the other hand, from the '75 GL1000 standard to the new 1800, there is a Goldwing to suit just about everybody. All from Honda.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Looks like I stirred up a bee's nest... I love good conversation like this.

I'm intending to replace the left and right hand switches with more modern units from another bike, as my 30+ year old GL switches could use some updating. I like the simplicity of the single cable, but looks like it's on me to make that decision, safety factors included.

Thanks all for the input
 
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