Let me try to say this carefully and not give a wrong impression. I love the 1800 but one of my complaints with it is the harsh front suspension. You will always on rough roads have a bit of road feel into the handlebars. This is just a characteristic of the design.
Two other things if the ride has became excessively rough can be at fault.
One is the radial tires are very hard, I call them cement radials. Radial tires are simply hard and do not have the compression that bias ply tires have, so as a tire wears it gets a bit rougher in ride. A new tire will be quite more smooth for about 8000 miles , then it starts all over again.
The other is the anti-dive on the left fork can get to sticking or acting in an erratic manner but sticking and then working . It can get to the point it vibrates the front so hard it busts the filaments in the headlight bulbs. You can determine that by going down a known rough road about 35 mph and peering down the tunnel to the front forks. (do not run off the road and kill yourself) if you see the top of the fork action moving up and down a half to 3/4 of an inch it is working, if it is not moving then the thing is sticking, and needs to be serviced. Some even over-ride it or deactivate it , but this is a very bad practice and a great safety issue if you ever need to have full use of the front brake in an emergency stop.
No, I had a rear tire failure(Dunlop 250s)at 7,500 miles, had to replace both tires with Dunlop D 3's. Dont particularly like them. They don't ride as smooth as the OEM tires, and will replace with something else when the time comes. Had Metzelers on my 1500 and loved them. Seems like all the 1800 guys mention the Bridgestones.
I have a 2008 1800 with 1400 miles. The anti dive has already been replaced, but itbottoms out andhas a lot of spring to it. Itfeels like it doesn't have enough fork oil.Several dealers say it is normal for the bike to ride rough. Any help anyone can provide is appreciated. I am very disappointed.
I had read in a forum some were about the sound of rattleing plastic on the 1800.
I experienced the sound as soon as i set off from the dealers when new, it's not exsesive though,and the ride from the front end is a little harsh,but i am used to it now.
There is that much plastic on the front end around the dash area that ure going to get a small amount of plastic vibration,that to i have got used to,and it sure ai'nt a problem.
GL 1800s are fantastic.
I love most everything about my wing. But from the day I got it the front suspension has been harsh. Maybe it's the anti-dive, maybe it's just not the best engineered component on the bike. Either way, I will be changing it around at some point soon. I doubt I will pop for the $2000 plus traxxion solution, but some combination of new springs and modified or disabled anti-dive seems inevitable.
I commute into Washington DC and the road surface is awful. The banging of the front end is no fun.
A lot of people say that disabling anti dive is a bad idea, but I can't believe these same people can argue that the front end is as good as many other bikes, Because it is not.
Why should I have to "get used" to such a crummy front suspension? Sadly, I have gotten used it somewhat over the past year or so, but seriously, why should we riders have to just leave it the way it is?
This is a common problem with the GL1800's especially if there is Progressive springs installed.
Progressive recommends the A.D.V. be disabled..
Mr. Fix it
Could you please share with us where Progressive states that they recommend to dis-able the anti dive ?? I would not recommend disabling the ADV with OEM or Progressive springs, way to much nose dive when hard on the brakes. Even with progressive springs installed in my 03 I was able to bottom out the front forks with the ADV disabled. When that happens there is too much weight transfer to the front and the bike will become less stable.
Easy way to check the function of your anti dive, sit on the bike and apply the front brake. Stand so as to straddle the bike and rock the bike forward several times. Keep the brake applied, the front suspension should compress several times and then lock-up. Stop bouncing the bike, release the brake and re-apply without moving the bike, repeat the bounce, the suspension should cycle several more times before locking. If it does not the AD plunger is sticking and needs to be cleaned. I also recommend putting a .035" spacer under the bleed nut, that will remove the preload on the ADV allowing for a smother ride and the ADV will still function normally.