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Hello. I am looking into buying a used Goldwing. Been reading up on the History section, and pricing bikes on various websites as well as local dealers in the NE Illinois area. At this point, per my budget, I think I have narrowed my interest to the GL1200 series made from 84-87. The SEi model is interesting as it is the only model fuel injected. Does anyone have any insight as to this model being something "good" vs. something to be avoided? Seems to me FI would be a good thing to have regarding fuel mileage and dependability. Anyone? Thanks.
 

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Do a search on here for the fuellie 1200s. I believeI remember reading a while back about a controller that is a bit hard to come by, should itfail. Didn't commit the post to memory, as mine's carbureted.

The 1200s are fantastic machines, both performance wise, and aesthetically. I've never regretted buying mine for a second. Best of luck, and good hunting. :)
 

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Oddy,

The fuel injected GL1200 models have two possible strikes agaist them. The fuel injection system is harder to maintian/get parts for. Also, most M/C magazine reviews from back then found them weak in the mid-range compared to the carbureted GL1200s.

Find an '87 if you can. All of the GL1200 improvements over the four-year GL1200 run are included in the '87. Plus, the '87 GL1200 seat is one of the best liked seats on a Goldwing. It was redesigned on the GL1200 for '87.

Also, make sure that whatever GL1200 you buy has had the stator replaced. They were a warranty recall item and require engine removal. If you have the bike's VIN, you can call Honda Customer Servcie in Torrance CA, at 866-784-1870, and they can look up if the bike has had the stator replaced.

Good luck on your search. You'll love a GL1200.
 

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Oddy,

I own on 85 1200 LTD - basically the same as the 86 SEI. 85 and 86 were the only years those models were produced.

You would think I would be a fanboy of these models, but actually I agree with Wingman71. The supply of OEM FI-specific parts for these bikes is drying up and it makes it tough to fix if you are unlucky enough to have one of the scarce parts belly-up on you. Some forum members and others have found or created replacements for some of these parts (search this forumfor sei and ltd), but some (especially the ECU) are very rare and expensive.

I think you would be better off with the newest carbed 1200 you could find. Carbs have their own issues, but rebuild kits are readily available and if you have the time and are inclined, you can do your own work.

Regardless of if you get a carbed or FI model, the stator will be an issue. A few owners have never had theirs burn out, while on others they seem to burn out like light bulbs. I think it is not a matter of "if", but rather a matter of "when" the stator will go. A better idea is the "poorboy" method of using an automotive alternator driven by a belt off the crank tucked up under the left side of the fairing. If you can find a 1200 that already has a poorboy, then that is all the better. Otherwise, it is something to consider. Again, there is a ton of info about it on this board.

Good luck with your search.
 

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I have owned an 85 Ltd since September of this year. It had an aftermarket security system that created electrical problems but once that was resolved, it has been a beautiful ride. I live in California and because of the weather here, it is my daily ride throughout the year. I am lovin' it. As far as carbs vs the efi, if you run seafoam :cool:through it regularly, they are smooth as silk and responsive through the gears. The need for replacement parts for the fuel injection shouldn't become an issue but if it does, they are not hard to come by. (Much easier to keep them clean however than it is to replace them which is the same as carbs. An ounce of prevention is worth much more than a pound of replacement or rebuilding). I love the aesthetics on this particular bike (that is why I purchased an older model) and the only drawback I see is the intricacy of the electrical system. It has not only an onboard computer for the injection system and motor, but also the full featured riders' electronic dash and settings (constant mpg digital tach and speedo, trip set, mpg average for trip etc. etc. etc. Mine as many do also has the CB, radio/cassette player and inbuilt intercom system for driver/passenger. As you can see, I am proud of her, get a tremendous number of comments on the way she looks and I am sure I have bugs inmy grillas well as those in the grill of the bike. Happy yes, and wishing you well on your look for THE ride.:dude: v_man_1
 

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Thanks for the feedback guys. And glad to hear both sides. I'm a big believer of adding an occasional bottle of carb cleaner to keep the fuel system clean, and would continue that should I get a SEi. The comment about the stator failing scares me frankly, but is very good information, so thank you for that. I have found a very low mileage SEi about 100 miles from my town, but right now it is about 10 degrees out, and I have plenty of winter left to look for my Goldwing. Right now I am thinking the 87 carb version is my first pick, and will keep looking. If my search fails, I still have my trusty CB900 Custom come spring.
 

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Oddy,

I did not mean to do so, but in my previous post I think I may have unintentionally slammed the LTD/SEis. They ARE extremely nice motorcycles. They havesome features that even the 1800s don't have - nice trip computer, air suspension with auto-level, a gear position indicator, and on-board air compressor (theAspencades have that also).

They do run extremely well compared to thecarbedversions. It is really nice to be able to take right off no matter what the temp withoutfiddling with a choke. It is just important to be aware that they do have some proprietary parts on them that canbe rather expensive to come by (however, I guess ANY vehicle has some of those types of parts -it never is an issue unlessone of those parts goes bad on you).

The stator, however,applies to all 1200s. I have the stator in mine and I would be hesitant to take it on a long trip for fear if it would burn out, I would be stranded.I think the LTD/SEis can run about 1/2 hour on just the battery if the stator fails. However, Ireadsomewhere of someonewho lost the stator and got to an auto parts store and bought a carbattery andcabling. He put the battery in the saddlebag and wired it to the originalbattery andwas able to finish the trip by riding for X amount of time then stopping to get it recharged. So, even ifthat were to occur, it is not totally the end of the world, but it could sure ruin your travel plans.

Also, if you look at any 1200s, be sure to check to see if the plug for the three yellow wiresto the left of the battery has been cut off and had the wires soldered together. That connector can get hot enough to melt and short out, which in itself is enough to ruin the stator. You always want to cut that connector out and solder the each of the three wires together. If the previous owner has already done that, that is a plus. I am not sure what the Honda engineers who designed the charging system on the 1200s were thinking when they designed it, but is sure wasn't about charging :stumped:
 

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So let me get this straight. It is only a matter of time before ANY GL1200 will have the stator fail? And the best solution is home-made (i.e. Poor Boy) You won't take your GL1200 on a long trip? You've talked me into keeping my old bike, it's reliable as can be. :?
 

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Oddy,

That is just my opinion, for what it is worth. The problem is there are no statistics that I know of to tell us what the failure rate.I am sure there are many 1200 owners with a lot of miles on their wings who are on the original stator. But, if you do any searching for "stator" you will also find a lot of people who have had to replace theirs (a fewmore than once).

One of the problems with trying to guess how long they will last is that no one knows exactly what makes them fail. The connector for the three yellow wires by the battery is one known factor that needs to be removed to help the situation.

There are many, many folks who ride their 1200s all over creation and don't give a thought to the stator. I guess I just always fear the worst (had a hip replacement about 4 years ago that basically left me crippled, so maybe that has a lot to do with it).

It is worth noting that some peopledo the "poorboy" car alternator conversion to get more electrical power, not just to eliminate the stock stator. If you want to run a lot of lights, electric clothing, etc, the stock 1200 stator does not make enough electical power to run all of that and still power the electical system of the bike.

Didn't mean to scare you away from a 1200, but I think it is important to tell the bad as well as the good.
 

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I am amazed at the amount of emphasis place on such a simpled and inexpensive part. Contact Electrosport.com for a plug in replacement stater. It is after market, less expensive and very compatible with the stater for the 1200SEI. Better than that, it was designed to deal with the "heat problem" inherent in the factory model. It is fully warrantied and actually a better product. Furthermore, if you are out on the road and yours goes out you can temporarily (or permanently bypass the stator without damage to the bike. It, like a regulator/rectifier builds and regulates power for the electrical system for the bike. I had mine bypassed by a professional as it could have been the problem with an electrical problem in my bike and was not functioning properly anyway. I said it didnot create a problem to bypass it anyway and I have not had one. If you are worried about the electrical regulation on your bike just the same upgrade to the new and better stator through Electrosport (just giving the info about the bypass for those that need the work done on the road or don't have the funds needed to replace the stator).

For anyone interested, this particular company offers service on both sides of the "Pond" with offices in Oceanside Calfiornia and the Netherlands.:waving:v_man_1
 

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Welcome from Alabama! I don't know a thing about 1200's, but listen to these guys, they are all very savvy on them here. You can find alot at times on the GWRRA website in thier classifieds.Also, be REAL careful on E-Bay and the like. Lotsa scams to weed out.You will make a ton of friends here, and never be alone, good times or bad, that's for sure.Good hunting and shopping! jimsjinx
 

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Oddy.

Sorry for the prologue message but thought I might suggest you let us know where you hail from when you are requesting info about bikes and parts. It's okay if you don't want to be inundated with email in your box but knowing your whereabouts helps in many instances in locating parts or weather influenced info for what you are looking for. Believe me when I say that bikes respond differently to different locals and use related to that particular arena. Also, best of luck to you in your efforts to find an older model wing.:cool:I think you'll find. as I have, that the older models are as good as it gets for cruisin' the highways. (Don't think the new ones are bad either but I prefer ol' school when given the choice. v_man_1
 

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PM sent.
 

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Hey ghost rider 2,

I got a message in my email box that said you sent me a private message. I went to check the private message and found it blank. Please try it again or send it to me at [email protected]. Thanks v_man_1
 

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Not sure how that happened. I just checked my sent box. I sent a message to Oddy. It went. Not sure how the notification went to you.
 

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Here is my situation. I am in extreme NE Illinois. I currently have a 1982 Honda CB900 Custom, that I bought in 2005. This got me back into M/Cs after a 35 year absencewhile raising a family. I have taken it on several trips, two of approximately 2,000 miles in six days. The bike is seemingly bullet proof, my only complaints being it could be a tad more comfortable, and I'm getting a case of cc envy as all the guys I rde with now all have bigger bikes. So taking 2-3 trips per riding season, I figured a used Goldwing would be a good fit for me. Mind you, I have had my 900 for four riding seasons, and all I have had to do is normal maintence, and have the rear brake pads replaced. All of this for a bike I paid $1,200 for.

So my expectations are high for anything I pay $4,000 for. :action:

If I don't find what I'm looking for, not really a big deal, I still have wheels. The only thing I've found of interest so far is a 1986 GL1200 SEi with low miles. But these stories of stators and other things have me a bit spooked.
 

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Oddy,
When you are looking at bikes that are 20 plus years old, there are always going to be some maintenance issues (it goes with the territory). However, the Honda products in general and the Goldwings in particular are very reliable bikes. I spent $5000 for my 85seiLtd in September and another grand tweaking it (had an electrical problem based on a short in an aftermarket security system and a bad battery) and I had the bike gone over at a shop from head to toe when I first bought it. If you are looking for cruising comfort and the extra ccs, anything from the 1100s up fits the bill. I have been riding bikes for over forty years and also wanted to go bigger and more comfortable. The 85 LTD fit the bill and allows me an unexpected extra (40 plus mpg that matches the mileage of my 600 cc scooter that I had been riding recently). The stator problem is real but certainly fixable and the other electrical problems are not presented as often as it appears from the writings you are reading. Yes, they do occur but shouldn't be considered a negative that would keep you from the ride you seek. As I said before, the older the bike, the more wear and tear from age you will find. Look for one that has been babied, well cared for and garaged if possible. Talk with the PO and verify with a good mechanic and I think you will get what you are looking for. Best of luck to you as you continue to seach :):):) v_man_1
 

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Oddy what part you from Im in the NE too pm me Ill let you take a look at my 1200 with a newstator and some new up date
 

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I have 2 of the 85 Limitred's and they are great. Have had no problems with the bike. Just have problems getting a stock pile of extra parts.

:action:

Gordon
 

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Welcome to the World's best GoldWing forum Oddy!

I personally wouldn't let the stator issues worry me. They have gotten a lot of bad press, but from what I've found, the average factory stator is lasting 60,000 miles or more. Many bikes will need some major work by that time, but not the GoldWing. These motors will go 200K easy. It's a bummer that the engine needs to come out to change the stator, but even that is not a terrible job. You can do the job in a weekend if you are mechanical. If that is too much of a pain or you want a easier fix, do the poorboy kit. Then you have an easily changeable car alternator with a higher output. There are lots of these 1200's still on the road chewing up lots of highway miles. I have taken several long trips on my '86 and wouldn't hesitate to take it cross country, and in fact was going to last September for the forum rally until I got a nice deal on my 1500. The 1200 is a great bike and the shear number of them still on the road doing lots of miles is a testament to their overall reliability.

BTW, the stators don't usually just fail all at once in my experience either. They give you some warning. When mine went out at around 60,000, I had a few thousand miles warning as the voltage output started dropping. For this reason I highly recommend a voltmeter such as the Kuryakyn unitor the Show Chrome unit. A good edition on any Wing that does not have a voltage guage.

John
 
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