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Hi Folks, new to the forum here but have been checking out the vast amount of information available here. What a great resource this is.

Here is my situation. I just picked up a 1984 Goldwing Interstate with, according to the title, 57,000 miles. The previous owner had just purchased it at auction and had it shipped out from Florida to the West Coast. He said once it was off the shipping palate he started it up and came to life right away, he rode it at a low speed for a few minutes then parked it. I do believe him with regard to it being rideable, although this was four months ago.

Since then, the bike has been sitting outside in the rain, and it's been pretty wet in Seattle so far this year. I got it home, put in a new battery, turned the key, and all the lights worked fine.

I cranked it over, everything spun fine as well. However, it wouldn't start, not even a cough.

I put in new fuel, with seam foam.

I checked for spark, which was fine.

Still nothing.

Tried a little starting fluid, still nothing.

I then checked the compression, and found this:

LF: 140 psi
LR: 5 psi
RF: 140 psi
RR: 145 psi

I then put penetrating oil in the 5 psi cylinder, and after many cranks it crept up to 28 psi.

Here is my question for all of you venerable experts:

could this be a stuck valve, or more likely bad rings? If it's a valve, how to fix it, and if it's the rings, what might have caused the rings to go bad after sitting for only four months?

Thanks very much for any help you guys can provide!
 

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WEcome to the site.. sorry for your problem..

definitely valves (or maybe a hole in a piston.. lets hope not).. rings would show something.. notpractically nothing

I'd pull the valve cover off that side and have a look-see... a stuck valve could collapse a lifter (1200's were hydraulic) or do other damage... (like punch a hole in a piston)

(my tractor is a Ferguson TO-30)
 

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Thanks for the reply Sandiegobrass, sounds like a good place to start. I'll check it out and get back to you all on it.

Also all the plugs were perfectly tan, except the low psi cylinder, which was black and wet.
 

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In fact, I think I would be expect that the head needs to be reomved for internal inspection as well.....
 

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I had that thought too. I think maybe the fuel system needs to be checked out as well, I'm going to drain the carb bowls and put in a new fuel filter and see what happens.

Do you all think it would be wise to try and start it on three cylinders to see if the stuck valve comes loose? The fuel filter looks old enough to be the original one...
 

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i'm it Dennis on this. It was probly like this from florida.
could be a bent valve from broken timming belt,but highy unlikely as the belts are petty reliable.
also on of the vales may be stuck open if rain got into the intake while bike was sitting with that valve open.
Did you recheck the cylindr again to make sure it was not an error it can happen.
reckeck the compression if still bad pull valve cover and observe vale action while cranking engine.
As far as the no start shoot some starter fluid down the plenum or a very little gas and crank to see if it fires
wilf
 

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Thanks for the directives Wilf. I'll recheck the compression, do the fuel filter, then try again with some starting fluid if necessary. Sounds like pulling the valve cover will probably shed some light on things.
 

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I would NOT try to get it running on three until I knew what was going on with the 4th... it might just beat itself up more.. as I already said, removing the valve cover will tell a lot or little, but it is a good first step..
 

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I'm sorry, let me clear up my statement. What I meant was; normally a 4 banger 'Wing will start andrun on three, if the problem is simple, such as a bad carb, or spark plug, or even some messed up compression rings. I wasn't, however, suggesting you should try and start the motor.

I agree with Sandiegobrass that you should find out what's going on so as to not risk further damage. I also agree with Wilf about re-checking the compression. 5 lbs. is awfully low.

One statement has me wondering; You say only one plug smells of fuel? I would think they all would if the bike is getting gas to the cylinders but not firing. I'd check the fuel flow again.
 

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OK, thanks for clarifying. That was my idea to try and start it again, I appreciate you guys probably saving me further problems.

I'll just pull that cover and check out what's going on in there. Thanks again for all the input, I'll keep you all posted.
 

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if the bike was mine i would pull the head and find out whyit has low compression. if engine is turnedover there is a risk of damage in the cylinder. sincei wouldhave the radiator and the timing belts exposed i would change the hoses and timing belts. i would also pull the other head, hand lap the valves ,new seals, new head gaskets.turn the radio on to reba and spend some time getting to knowthe bike. walkabout :smiler:
 

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My take on this would be a valve problem.
Adding a fluid into the plug hole will increase compression dramatically if it's the rights. The compression rose a little bit but it would have shot up if the problem was rings. Therefore…. I'd suspect a tight/bent or burnt valve. Time to pull the head.
Good luck and welcome to the forum.
 

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Thanks guys, I'll pull the head off then. It'll be a good excuse to get in there and change the timing belts anyway! :cheesygrin:
 

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If it was y bike I have an adapter to ook up o compessor that will thead into the sparkplug hole as in a leadown tester. I would pup air into the clinder and see here it came out. But im rel unshure of you compression test
Wilf
 

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Oil, or such, will increase the compression if the rings are at fault.

Sine you have to take off the rocker covers to get the heads off, check the clearance at the valves of the suspect cylinder. Turn the engine to see if the the valve clearance increases dramatically on one of the valves. If so you do have a bent valve. A bent valve won't seat fully and the rocker arm won't come as close to the valve stem.

Wilf's suggestion is a good one. If the sound of air escaping id from the intake, an intake valve is not closing. If the sound of air escaping is from the exhaust, an exhaust valve is leaking. If the air is escaping in to the crankcase it is the rings or if a lot of air, a holed piston.

Do the inexpensive tests first.
 

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Thanks for all the great info everyone. I've got some work to do this weekend, I'll keep y'all updated!
 

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So, ok, here's the update. After checking the compression multiple times, on the fifth or sixth attempt my gauge read 145 psi on the previously low cylinder somehow. Plain and simple operator error I guess. It's still not clear though why the plug for that cylinder was fouled while the other ones were nice and tan.

That was a bit of a relief, in spite of the chagrin. I then pulled the fuel filter, which was filled with what looked like mud but probably bits of rust from the tank I'm guessing. After that I drained the carb bowls, and out came some fuel with a milky appearance. I picked up some 3011 filters from NAPA, with new fuel line, and heading out to the garage right now to put one in. We'll see if she starts!
 

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casetractor wrote:
So, ok, here's the update. After checking the compression multiple times, on the fifth or sixth attempt my gauge read 145 psi on the previously low cylinder somehow. Plain and simple operator error I guess. It's still not clear though why the plug for that cylinder was fouled while the other ones were nice and tan.

That was a bit of a relief, in spite of the chagrin. I then pulled the fuel filter, which was filled with what looked like mud but probably bits of rust from the tank I'm guessing. After that I drained the carb bowls, and out came some fuel with a milky appearance. I picked up some 3011 filters from NAPA, with new fuel line, and heading out to the garage right now to put one in. We'll see if she starts!
That "mud" might actually be the filter if it was an EMGO filter. They have a tendency to break down when exposed to ethanol gas.
 
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