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Hi, I've had an 88 GL1500 for about 10 years with 32K miles on it. I run Synthetic 4-stroke Racing M/C 10/40 oil. With the motor warm and going up through the gears,the noisestarted and has grown louder over the last 3-5K miles. It sounds like a single steel ball bearing bouncing off of the lower front motor case area.Something like a deeper sounding loose rocker arm on a chev 350V8. Very pronounced holding the throttle at about 3K rpm. Not really noticable in 4th or 5th. I did pull the timing front covers off of the motor and inspect the belts and related rollers, and they were great. The bike has the normal clutch rumble noise at idle in neutral. The motor and alternator are all untouched so far except for a carb rebuild, new timeing belts and timing wheel,done a couple of years back. The bike has always seen normal duty road riding, mostly double with my wife and travel gear. Thankyou for any ideas on this noise, Jim....
 

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It might be the water pump.
 

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Could be the weak/worn shift fork issue reported in the early 1500's.
Sounds like marbles in the transmission in 1-N-2-3, goes away in 4-5.
 

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Alternator rear bearing?
 

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Ken Bergen wrote:
Could be the weak/worn shift fork issue reported in the early 1500's.
Sounds like marbles in the transmission in 1-N-2-3, goes away in 4-5.
Doesn't that go away if you face the bike uphill, or down, don't remember?
 

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Not really. Tried at 3K in 3rd. and I thinkI could still hear the little knock. The whole power plant gets a little quieter with the clutch in so the knock was quieter also, but still there.
 

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Sorry, I'm new to this blogging, so I answered your question down further about the noise not going away with the clutch pulled in.
 

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Thanks Dave, good thought on the water pump and I kind of wish it was....Have a bad feeling it's a shift fork. It's getting loud enough to be scary. I'm a hot rod car builder and have alot of mechanical knowledge with over 45 years puting cars together.. The one post mentioned splitting the cases to fix the fork costing about $3000. The bike still has the weak fork springs, badly worn rear brake disc, and the second output shaft seal starting to leak oil into the boot and hit the floor after a days ride. The wife just mentioned that we could use the repair money towards a newer 1800 and maybe part this one out. Keep riding as long as you can and thanks for the post, Jim..
 

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Thanks Ken, and my only question would be if these 1500 forks seem to bend at once or slowly over 5-8K miles? The noise was ever so quiet way back a couple of years. The 1-2-3 marbles and not 4th or 5th is a real match to the sound. I had forgot to mention that at 5800 miles, when I bought the bike, it had a tranny output shaft oil leak the filled the front ujoint boot with oil, that drained after parking. I replaced it carefully with a new honda seal and had the ujoint surface checked out. It lasted about 1000 miles on a trip down to Disney Land. The original seal showed no signs of wear or damage. I had always had a real mild vibration at crusing speed that made me wonder about the tranny output shaft having a problem. I have afeeling that we might part this bike out as it is a pristeen 88 model. Then put the repair money towards a newer 1800. I really appreciate everybody's post and suggestions. You are all a great help, Jim..
 

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Now that's a good question as I didn't pay attention on the few hills this weekend. Will investigate further, thanks, Jim.
 

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Thankyou all for your time in replying to my posts. One more question... Some of the blogs have mentioned that Honda came out with beefed up shift forks, for the 1500 motors, around 1998 or 99. I am going to tear the bike down this winter and find out what is going on myself. I will post my results when done, but wondered if anybody had heard about newer stronger shift forks? Thanks, Jim.
 

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i would swap the engine from a 97-2000 if it came to that



i did, but for other reasons:sadguy:
 

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Thanks Mr. Vern, for the info. I've decided to search out a newer used motor, like you said, and not go through all the tear down this one would need to replace the shift forks. I think I saw, somewhere, that Honda beefed up the forks around 1998 or 99. Hope to find one and then sell the 1500 and move to an 1800 model. Ride safe, Jim..
 

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1997 model year and newer is what you are thinking of .... coincided with the advent of the Valkyrie.

Only 32,000 miles on it huh? Hard to believe the shiftfork is worn that bad already .... but maybe so? Just know of sevberal early 1500s that went over 200K.

:?
 

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Thanks for the 97 or newer info. I probably have myself to blame for the shift fork. I hill climbed and dirt dragged a built and extended exhibition class Honda. I did this from about the age of 44 to 50, when I decided the bike was riding me. I only have the Wing now and haven't lost the feeling of running the gears a couple times a summer. Pretty sure, having weaker shift forks, I probably did the damage. I'm 61 now and love the Goldwing bikes, always will. My wife and I talk more on the bike than we do at home or in the car. There is a freedom while riding, that a lot of people never get to feel. I've rode and raced bikes since I was 13. Started riding dirt on about a 1962 or 63 Honda 50 4 speed clutch. Very different, at the time with stamped frames, but huge rear sprockets made it a fun wheelie type trail and farm bike. Still get that excited feeling on thewing every spring on the first ride. I know the 1800's are well balanced and handle way better than a 1500 but I've never been on one. I was afraid I'd have to get one! I know I will try to get a newer motor asI don't have the heart to just part out or junk the bike. It's a really nice indoor stored bike. Thanks again for the info reply and I wish you many safe years of riding, Jim..
 

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Man....I have an 88 with 110k and am not young enough to do an engine swap then sort out all the issues associated with the electrical on a newer motor vs the older bike. But then I am not near familiar enough with all the other systems on these bikes. Good Luck! I hope it turns out well. Do not blame you for doing it though.
 

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I hear you. I've done this kind of thing most of my life and never look forward to doing it. Seems to be some head aches on most things I do myself at home in my shop....lol I would guess the basic heads block and transmission are the same for all the 1500s, at least I hope. Just a matter of bolting on all the outside stuff and pluging in the wiring. Sort of like doing a short block change on a chev 350 V8. I've had repeat problems with the output shaft seal weeping oil into the driveshaft boot and then leaving a puddle after parking. If I succeed in finding a 97 or newer motor, I'm hoping to solve this problem also. Thanks for the reply, Jim..
 

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Jim
There are some differences in the heads. Some have Reed valves for emissions. Do a forum search on this. Someone did this last winter and did a good write up with pics. I'm writing on my phone so I can't search and copy for you. Lots of info to get you through it here. Keep it running.
And yes they do get it at 32,000. Chromo bought a 95 w/ 32,000 on it with 4th gear fork problem from a member in San Jose. He rode out on greyhound, bought it and rode the bike back to MO this past March and is still riding it. Just has to skip 4th gear.
Many posts on here point to floorboards being the cause. The linkage is sloppy and people holding their foot on the heel toe shifter causes undo pressure on the fork, though the main problem is the weak metal in those early forks. 97 was the upgraded transmission. Some of the 96s had it but stay with 97 and up too be safe.
 

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Bless your heart for the much needed info on our bike! I have two good friends that ride with the Patriot Guard up here.They are one of the most respected bike groups in my opinion. I don't have the balance, at my age now, to ride in formation of any kind. Just not comfortable in that style of riding. I will research the engine swap on here and follow up. I appreciate your time and interest in my questions on the Goldwing. Have a super day and a safe ride, Jim. God Bless.
 
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