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Hi all,

I'm new to Wings, just bought an '83 GL1100 Interstate. My problem is this - when idling there is sometimes a slight rattle or knock, but in the first few minutes, if I give it gas the motor seems to struggle a bit and there is a knocking/clanking sound. The sound almost sounds like the pistons are slapping the heads, but once I'm up to speed the bike seems to run well. It also does it quite a bit if I'm going slightly uphill from a stop in first gear (the bike is under load).

I changed the plugs, thinking it might just be missing, but that's not it. Any ideas? The bike has 20,000 original miles on it, and sat for probably months or even years before I bought it.

Thanks,

Jack
 

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It could be running "lean" due to the fact that the pilot circuit in the carburetor is smewhat clogged. Also, one of the sliders in the carb may be sticking. These conditions often occur when a bike has been sitting for extended periods of time and old gas starts gumming up the works.

Worth checking out.

J M Wolfe

North Royalton, OH
1987 BMW K75
1981 Honda GL1100
1973 Yamaha CT3
 

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I have the same problem with my bike. As soon as it warms up, the sound is gone. Thecarbs were rebuilt a year ago, I've change oil, change plugs.
I'm marking the problem off to a old bike. I get a small cloud of smoke in the morning after the bike has sat for over 12 hours. I'm sure it's a valve, piston ring leak which I have no plans to repair unless the bike gets that bad. (which it runs great) Luckily for me, I'm in Florida and it doesn't get that cold and I ride all year long.

This bike doesn't have the "spurt" of power I like when riding, but I also keep in mind that's it's 24 years old. Which could mean the problems I mention before.
 

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Hi again,

I failed to mention the important part! The carbs were pulled, dismantled, cleaned, rebuilt with Honda's kit, then reinstalled and balanced/synchronized by a certified Goldwing mechanic. Granted - the bike seemed to make this sound a LOT worse before that, but the sound is still there.

Any other thoughts? I read somewhere (maybe on this board) that running an "engine flush" might be worthwhile.

Thanks,

Jack
 

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I wouldn't think it is a rod knocking with only 20K on it unless it was an EXTREMELY hard 20K. I have 90K on my 83 Aspencade and I don't hear any knock.

Could it just be bad gas? My bike runs considerably better on the middle (89 octane) or premium grades. Another thought was the oil. What viscosity are you using? Could be to thick first thing in the morning.

I am running 15-50 Synthetic oil in mine. I just switched it over from dino 20-50 the previous owner was using. Of course we never get below 40 degrees here and stay above 100 nine month out of the year!

Welcome to the forum and congrats on the bike!

Bob
 

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Just so I understand... the sound only happens when the bike is cold or you need more power going up hills? If that is the problem, mine does the same thing. (81 GL1100) Scared the hell at of me at first but I'm used to it and every mechanic I talkto says there's not much you can do.
 

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Just to reaffirm...my 82 also has a knock when first fired up. Unlike you southern boys, I have to adjust my oil during our riding season. I start with 10-40 March/April, load up to 15-50 for the summer, and switch again in the fall. The poor performance, if it is bad,I would attribute to poor mix (carbs), bad gas, and chugging up hill could be poor gear choice. I know if you are at a good altitude they do run sluggish. We've discussed this issue before and I've always sworn by high octane (92-94) but another member might have me convinced my logic may be out of wack. I've felt that poor performance and pinging was due to low octane which I may have confused for poor gas. Try a couple of tanks at different octanes and see if you notice any difference.

Basicly, a little knock on start upappears to be the nature of the beast.
 

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What the possibility of carbon in the cylinders causing a little ping until the engine warms up. A carbon build up could increase the compression just enough to cause knocking if the octane, air temp and pressure, andhumidity is just right. Once things warm up normal expansion of the cylinder and other parts, not to mention the air being warmed up a bit in the intake might smooth things out.

Have you tried using a stethoscope or a screwdriver to try to locate the source of the noise?
 

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Hello,

83 GL1100 owner. I also get some type of clanking or slapping noise from the engine only during warm up. Then the engine runs fine. I have around 75,000 miles on my Wing.
 

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exavid wrote:
What the possibility of carbon in the cylinders causing a little ping until the engine warms up...
I thought everyone used unleaded in their Wings? You wouldn't get carbon build-up from unleaded even with 100k miles. If the bike has ben run on leaded fuel then it might be another story...
 

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Reddy has a good point.. However, I have found carbon build-up around the back side of the exhaust valve stems in some older GL1100's because the owners used additives in the fuel, (probably to excess). Carbon will also build up over a period of time if the engine is not run long enough to burn off what hydrocarbons do accumulate when cold from the rich mixture when the choke is applied. There is a distinct difference between an octane "ping" and a mechanical "knock". Exavid's idea of how to listen for the noise is on the mark which will help to locate the area where the noise is being generated. Even though the engine has low mileage, which tells me it's not ridden enough, there could be a loose piston wrist pin caused by an overrev at one time, or a sticking valve which can produce a loud singular noise when it snaps back onto the seat in the head. Try to locate the area of the noise. This will concentrate the area of focus in diagnosingthe cause. Any engine with an abnormal noise should be suspect of something wrong.. Let's face it, they don't come from the factory knocking and snapping. If they did, no one would have bought them.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
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Sorry for these odd posts...my computer at work is really odd...

Jack
 

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Hate to tell ya, but you'll get carbon using unleaded. Gasoline is a hydrocarbon, no? You won't get lead build up with unleaded though. I used to decarbon my Rotax 582 at least once a year on my ultralight airplane andit never saw any leaded gasoline.
 

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Hi again, guys,

Okay, I had another opinion from someone here who says they know a bit about Wings, and before jumping to conclusions, let me get your input.

Suppose that one of the carbs is still acting up, or I'm not getting any/enough spark to one of the plugs. This fellow thinks it sounds like it's missing on a cylinder, and in a way I suppose that makes sense. Any thoughts or opinions?

Regardless of how this all turns out, I want to thank you guys for all your time and help!

Jack
 

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Well thats easy to check, just pull the plug cap off each plug (one at a time) with the engine running and if the idle speed doen't drop when you pull one cap off then thats the cylinder that isn't firing.
 

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jsmith24 wrote:
Hi again, guys,

Okay, I had another opinion from someone here who says they know a bit about Wings, and before jumping to conclusions, let me get your input.

Suppose that one of the carbs is still acting up, or I'm not getting any/enough spark to one of the plugs. This fellow thinks it sounds like it's missing on a cylinder, and in a way I suppose that makes sense. Any thoughts or opinions?

Regardless of how this all turns out, I want to thank you guys for all your time and help!

Jack
Hey.................what did you find out.........mine is doing the same thing!!
 

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Well, I had the carbs cleaned and serviced by a different shop, then synched, and the noise has all but disappeared (just the tiniest bit in first gear, only sometimes and not for long).

All my power is back, and as soon as I get my fairing on, forks straightened, I'll be back on the road!

Jack
 

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Hey you guys- Couldn't the knocking just be the clanking of the primary chain? I bet if the idle is turned up, or if it is idling better when warmer, the sound is gone...

;)

Jim
 

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Mines idleing bad anyway. Today I will install 4 fresh plugs and hope that during the process of getting oldwing started(been sitting a year) I fouled up one or 2 of the plugs.

By the way, what is the going rate for a qualified shop/mechanic to clean/adjust/synch the carbs?
 
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