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I'm working on the cooling system of my GL1100A today. I'm in the process of pulling the radiator out. The service manual says, simply and unhelpfully, "remove the radiator as a unit." Gee, thanks.

I've got the hoses off, I've got the fan disconnected, I've got the bottom unfastened and free.

I've spent 45 minutes trying to figure out how to get the top of the radiator free, with no luck whatsoever.

There is a cover over the top of it. It covers the top of the radiator, and is fastened in place with nuts over bolts that are fastened to the bike frame (blue arrow). The radiator has a tab welded to the top of it that is also fastened to the frame using these bolts, underneath the cover, using a rubber bushing.

The problem is I can't move either the cover or the radiator forward enough to clear these bolts, because the horn mounting tabs (red arrow) are in the way.



So I'm thinking:

a) I'm missing something, this should be a lot easier

b) The horn tabs are not factory, someone added them, and I will never get the radiator out with them there

c) It is just a huge pain trying to get it out, good luck with it mate

Help, anyone?
 

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Take the cap off the radiator if you haven't already. This will give you a little more wiggle room.

Also remove the hoses completely If they are still attached to the radiator they will jam you up. Once everything is free, pull down on the radiator a bit and slip that top mounting piece (cover) down and out. It will then be out of your way.

Another way is to pivot the mount up and back allowing the top of the radiator to move forward. The whole thing has to kind of lever upward to come out.
 

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The horn tabs look original to me. Ive had to take a crecent wrench and bend them up and then the radiator will come out. JB
 

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Remove the tin piece on the top front of the radiator that has the little studs for the radiator screen. It will pry off, it's only held by the mounting nuts. That will give you just a bit more room to wiggle and the radiator will come off.
 

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krazy al wrote:
on mine i bent horn tabs enough to get it out.also did you take over flow hose off?
+1 I just did mine a few weeks ago and I had to bend the horn tabs. It was still a pain but at least I got it out.
 

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My horn tabs are also bent out of the way, then you should not have a problem.

Chuck
 

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I just got finished reinstalling the rad on my 83 Gl1100A and I am glad that is over with. What a swine of a job! Yes you have to bend the horn tabs up out of the way. The tin piece is a total PITA to remove. But on the bright side it's just as hard if not harder to reinstall the stupid thing.

You may want to get a second person to stay up top and make sure the neck of the rad doesn't get hung up.

GOOD LUCK!
 

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Well I got it off, hoses replaced, back on and together, flushed, filled, and no leaks, so I figure "job's a good 'un" as my ex-father in law would say.

I took pictures as I went, of course, and posted it all for the next unfortunate soul who has to do this.

Thanks again everyone who stepped forward to help!
 

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If you are going to the trouble of taking the rad out, then I would have it professionally cleaned. Costs very little & does a much better job than any off the shelf stuff you & I can get to do the job. Also replace rad hose & clamps. All this stuff has been in the bike for about 30 years. If you do this you most likely won't be around when it has to be done again.

I tried a brand name rad flush along with a couple of flushes with distilled water but could still see some white crud in the bottom core. Took the rad to a rad shop and it came back much cleaner, no more crud visible.
 

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My original plan was to flush and inspect it, and to replace the radiator hoses. The cooling system on my bike has always worked perfectly, but knowing how old the hoses were, I decided to do some preventative maintenance.

I pulled the rad and replaced the hoses, but the rad was really quite sparkling clean. A little bit of scale in the filler neck, but no white crud, no deposits, nothing visible in the rad itself.

I reinstalled the rad with the new hoses, and flushed it twice with distilled water. Both times the water came out looking as clean as it went in. I decided I didn't need to do more than that, so I buttoned it up and filled with coolant.
 

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Oh, one more thing that I didn't mention. That damn tin piece at the top that gives so much trouble coming out and going in, gives so much trouble because at the back of it, it curves down, so it hooks the back side of the rad. Upon close inspection, I could see no reason for this - once it's all bolted in and installed, that curved piece doesn't hold anything, the rad is held in place by its own mounts. So I took some pliers and bent the curved piece over flat. This made it much easier to slip in and out, and didn't affect its operation at all.
 

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I bent my tabs to about 45 degrees. Really bad design on Honda's part.



I've since installed an air horn so the factory tabs are pointless now.
 

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GSMacLean wrote:
So I took some pliers and bent the curved piece over flat. This made it much easier to slip in and out, and didn't affect its operation at all.
I wish I had thought of that. With any luck I will not have to get back in there for a while.
 

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chris in va wrote:
I bent my tabs to about 45 degrees. Really bad design on Honda's part.

I've since installed an air horn so the factory tabs are pointless now.
I mounted my two FIAMM Freeway Blaster horns on those tabs, so I was really, really hoping they didn't crack and come off when I was bending them. I didn't want to have to haul out the welder for such a stupid little thing.

Come to think of it, I probably should have broken the tabs off intentionally, and re-welded them on the side of the frame, where they wouldn't block the radiator! :)
 

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GSMacLean wrote:
Oh, one more thing that I didn't mention. That damn tin piece at the top that gives so much trouble coming out and going in, gives so much trouble because at the back of it, it curves down, so it hooks the back side of the rad. Upon close inspection, I could see no reason for this - once it's all bolted in and installed, that curved piece doesn't hold anything, the rad is held in place by its own mounts. So I took some pliers and bent the curved piece over flat. This made it much easier to slip in and out, and didn't affect its operation at all.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that. I bent the flange on the back of that tin piece too.
 

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GSMacLean wrote:
chris in va wrote:
I bent my tabs to about 45 degrees. Really bad design on Honda's part.

I've since installed an air horn so the factory tabs are pointless now.
I mounted my two FIAMM Freeway Blaster horns on those tabs, so I was really, really hoping they didn't crack and come off when I was bending them. I didn't want to have to haul out the welder for such a stupid little thing.

Come to think of it, I probably should have broken the tabs off intentionally, and re-welded them on the side of the frame, where they wouldn't block the radiator! :)

Hey,



I am going on one year of owning an 82I and have done a few minor jobs like front springs and rear shocks. The pics and the clear steps you have taken are very helpful. When are you going to do the timing belts and post your steps and pics up? :)
 

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Unfortunately....the timing belts were pretty well the first thing I did to my bike when I first got it a few years ago. At the time I never thought to take pictures, I was more interested in not destroying my engine. :)

So until it's time to do my belts again, I won't have a pictorial for you.

I'd gladly write one up...but I don't have any pictures to accompany it.
 

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22lyons wrote:

Hey,



I am going on one year of owning an 82I and have done a few minor jobs like front springs and rear shocks. The pics and the clear steps you have taken are very helpful. When are you going to do the timing belts and post your steps and pics up? :)
Go to Nakedgoldwings.com and click on the shop talk link. They have a great pictorial for changing the timing belts. I think you have to register, but it is free.
 
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