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Hey Guys I'm new to this forum. I have an observation that you might be able to help me with. I have 94 GL1500 that seems to be a little heavy in the top end especially with a passenger. My Buddies both own the same bike one older (89) and one newer (99) and they both seem to sit lower. I've ridden all three bikes and the other two a definitely lower and seem to handle better in the curves. Did Honda make changes in the height of these bikes, and if so can I get mine to sit lower? Appreciate the direection.
 

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Administrator
Piaggio MP3, was 02 GL1800
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Get an OEM seat for a '98 thru '00 bike.
They are about 2 inches lower in the butt, at least to me it feels like it is that much lower.

I can put my heels flat on the ground on my '98.

On my old '94 I was tippy toe.

The frame did not change, but the seats did.

Oh, YMMV because of inseam length and my memory cells aren't perfect. :badgrin:
 

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Busdriver
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You probably have aftermarket fork springs and maybe too much air in the rear.
Change your fork oil and the oil in the air shock, and drop some air from the rear. You should notice an improvement.
Worked for me.
 

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The Irish Crew
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No suspension changes until 1995. A previous owner may have fitted Progressive fork springs in your Wing, and that is making it sit higher at the front.
 

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FWIW: Have owned '95SE 11+ years as sidecar rig[my 4th]. Always HATED '95 OEM seat! Used sheepskin w/gelpad to alleviate discomfort. Never had the $ to afford an aftermarket seat. Recently bought new OEM '94 seat; LOVE IT[so does wife]! It HAS more padding for comfort...wish I'd changed a long time ago! Don't have to suffer now during long trips. My 2 cents. TTFN....papasmurf
 

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Still Learning
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Welcome to the forum Pro Graphics
Should one feel top heavy compared to the others? Not by much as all 1500 parts interchange body wise, the Interstate has no reverse so will be less weight but not much and all the weight is low on these bikes.
Worn or out of adjustment Suspension parts will give a different handling feel.
Size of rider and passenger plays into the equation too.
Load in the bags and trunk.
Tires and their air pressure is big. How old are they and what psi are you riding them? Are you checking the psi before riding?

Are they different models, ie; interstate vs SE, Aspencade?
Are all the Suspensions set at the same psi settings and all stock vs Aftermarket Suspensions?

All in all, more info needed.
 

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Just to 'throw it out there' ... things like tires wores out, low on psi and overtightened steering head bearings can really make a 1500 feel clumsy.
 

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Anti-Guru
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A good look at the suspension (as mentioned) is in order (Shocks and pressure in em, and forksprings, and pressure in forks are both relevant). Also - look at tires, manufacturer, tread depth, and pressure; they also impact handling.

It may help if you add a few of the symptoms that you're classifying as "Top Heavy"...
  • Are you feeling a general inaccuracy in steering and finding it difficult to just ride straight where you should be 'just crusin'?
  • Does your bike feel like it's falling into turns as you lean it down?
  • Lowspeed/highspeed instability?
  • What do curbs and speed-bumps feel like?
  • Are you finding that the bike chases tar-snakes/cracks?
If nothing else, I'd suggest the PM services/inspection for your suspension as a place to begin discussions:
  • Inpect front tire treadwear, pressure, and any irregularities
  • With the front off the ground spin and listen for bearing noises
  • Turn the front side to side with and without keeping the bars still, checking for play or ANYTHING that's not glass-ass smooth (play and condition of the stem bearings)
  • Check for oil leaks at the forkseals or evidece there of anything wet below)
  • Inspect to see if you have a fork brace (check with your buddys' bikes to see if they have braces)
  • Flush and properly fill your forks - a 10W oil will soften things out and is a good place to start tuning (15W or ss7 is OEM)
  • Inpect rear tire treadwear, pressure, and any irregularities
  • With the rear off the ground spin, you should feel smooth and even drag/no real "noise"
  • Try to wiggle the rear tire and swingarm side to side checking for any play (play and condition of the swingarm and wheel bearings)
  • Verify which rear shocks you have ('2 air' or 'one spring one air')
  • With the rear still in the air, measure how far the wheel drops below the muffler, or other easy to measure point (droop measure - I measure from a trim-line on my saddle bag, or the bag frame, if I'm measuring someone else's)
  • Set the bike back down sit on it (one up) and measure from the ground to whatever point you measured previously; set your rear air pressure so that this value is about 1.5" less than the droop measure above (a good place to start tuning)
If you've got an SE (or other with air caps in the forks) - you can do all of this in under an hour. Take a ride to see if thnigs have changed, and you'll know more for a baseline.

Just for comparison, I had a guy ask me not too long ago about his bike being uncomfortable and feelign top-heavy -- turns out that he had 70psi in an OEM shock and 14psi in the forks. Vented the forks to 0 and droop-set the rear (about 32-psi for him) and he had a safe riding bike that still needed its forks flushed....
 
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