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I found this little essay on Facebook, sometimes you can come across some interesting reading there.


The Last of The Fast Goldwings ..

4 cyl. not the Land Yacht 6 cyl. ..

.. the last of the 1975-76 by Design High Perf flat four cyl. bike lineage .. is the 1980-'81 GL1100 .
These are the Big Bore 76mm x the RPM loving 61.4mm stroke engines .. with CLOSE RATIO GEAR SETS .

Cylinder Head combustion chambers were re_designed for swirl & better low-mid RPM burn.

Pistons are Flat Top .. heads are cross flow HEMI with valves spaced nicely for seats to stay cool & Tulip Valves.
The GL1100 had three different gear sets in as many years ..

each change moving the RPM range lower for The Touring buyers .. making each gear change wait longer which without adding Torque / HP just makes the bike sluggish.

The change between the Close Ratio 1980-81 bikes & 1982 is big enough for me not to buy a 1982.

The Best of the Performance GL1100 would be the 1983 bike .. comes with Factory HONDA RoadRace developed Anti-Dive TRAC front end - twin piston calipers etc . with an '80-'81 Close Ratio Transmission Gear Set installed.

The GL1200 is same swirl HEMI heads .. Torque Cams .. & a stroked crankshaft from 61.4 mm now 66mm .. kinda kick ass .. but which gets mugged by it's transmission gear set.

The GL1200 gear set require judicious throttle & clutch work to launch .. then wait for next gear .. and wait .. it's a lumbering Barge gear ratio set .

4cyl Goldwings are interesting .. strip off the Touring Bags & Fairing .. take 'em back to their '75-'76 high performance config. .. great low CG peg scraper .
 

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I have a 78,80,81,82,86. None running. I am trying to revive the 80. Glad to know about the performance stuff
 

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I found this little essay on Facebook, sometimes you can come across some interesting reading there.


The Last of The Fast Goldwings ..

The change between the Close Ratio 1980-81 bikes & 1982 is big enough for me not to buy a 1982.

The Best of the Performance GL1100 would be the 1983 bike .. . with an '80-'81 Close Ratio Transmission Gear Set installed.
Another expert that doesn't know what he is talking about. The 82 was just a little different from the 80-81 but not enought to notice and the 83 was geared higher except 1st gear.
 

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My 82 would scare the crap out of after 110 mph,was really fast to 100,would stay with my buddy 600 Kawasaki to 100 and was faster than his 1100 bmw BUT it weigh less than 400 pounds and would turn 12000 rpm,I built a 4 into one for it,loved it,some Gup at work left me a note and said he wanted to buy it,was a gift to me.sold it 1900 in Mesa Az
 

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1993 GL1500 Aspy 1980 GL1100 STD
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I've surprised a lot of other bike riders just how fast my '80 1100 is... Of course it won't beat those "Zoom-Splat" crotch rocket bikes, but I run with guys driving V-stars, Shadows, Beemers and even Hardleys. I've (only once) had the 1100 up to 110mph (based on tach reading due to 85mph speedo), there was still plenty of tach and throttle remaining, could've gone faster but "yours truly" decided that was plenty fast enough and shut it down!

5K RPM @ 75 MPH = 15 MPH per 1K of RPM. Thus MPH at redline 8K RPM = 120 This with standard size tires and 1980 gear ratios. And a Goldwing will happily exceed redline.

If I could clone myself and pit my 1100 against my 1500, I'm pretty sure the 1100 will beat the 1500. But it won't beat the 1500 on the "comfy" factor!
 

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I had my 82 to 125 by the 83 speedometer I had on it.
 

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Personally, I don't see the point in buying a Goldwing and then stripping it down to maximize performance. Why not just buy a crotch rocket motorcycle?

I'd rather load my Goldwing up with all my camping gear and enjoy the comfort for which it is famous.

But to each his own! :)
 

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Personally, I don't see the point in buying a Goldwing and then stripping it down to maximize performance. Why not just buy a crotch rocket motorcycle?

I'd rather load my Goldwing up with all my camping gear and enjoy the comfort for which it is famous.

But to each his own! :)
Pretty sure the article is about standards, all the 1000s and standard 11& 1200s, not dressed models. And I agree about stripping one down.
 

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Another expert that doesn't know what he is talking about. The 82 was just a little different from the 80-81 but not enought to notice and the 83 was geared higher except 1st gear.
Wasn’t there also a switch from 17” rear tire to 16” between 82&83?
 

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I've surprised a lot of other bike riders just how fast my '80 1100 is... Of course it won't beat those "Zoom-Splat" crotch rocket bikes, but I run with guys driving V-stars, Shadows, Beemers and even Hardleys. I've (only once) had the 1100 up to 110mph (based on tach reading due to 85mph speedo), there was still plenty of tach and throttle remaining, could've gone faster but "yours truly" decided that was plenty fast enough and shut it down!

5K RPM @ 75 MPH = 15 MPH per 1K of RPM. Thus MPH at redline 8K RPM = 120 This with standard size tires and 1980 gear ratios. And a Goldwing will happily exceed redline.

If I could clone myself and pit my 1100 against my 1500, I'm pretty sure the 1100 will beat the 1500. But it won't beat the 1500 on the "comfy" factor!
I am pretty sure that the 80 and the 81 had the same gear ratios. In real world conditions my 81 does 105 mph (using a GPS for actual speed) at 8000 rpm. I know this from chasing my brother on his 2012 Road King down the western side of the Black Hills into Newcastle Wyoming. If I had bought an 82 I would of had better brakes ( twin pot calipers) and could of gone 5mph faster than his top speed of 110 mph. I love the lower ratios of my 81 as it allows me to ride it as an adventure bike a lot easier and unfortunately now it is back home in Oz it really doesn’t get to see terminal velocity that much.
 

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What do you guys think of the new 2020 Goldwing? I like it but can't bring myself to spend $20k+ right now.
 

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From my magazines of old:
Back in 80 when new, the 80 standard turned a 12.47 1/4.
85 ltd 12.88
86 interstate 12.65
97 Valk 12.37
88 1500 13.01
The 75 1000 broke into the high 12's to become the 2nd fastest of the day next the the KZ900.
 
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I am pretty sure that the 80 and the 81 had the same gear ratios. In real world conditions my 81 does 105 mph (using a GPS for actual speed) at 8000 rpm. I know this from chasing my brother on his 2012 Road King down the western side of the Black Hills into Newcastle Wyoming. If I had bought an 82 I would of had better brakes ( twin pot calipers) and could of gone 5mph faster than his top speed of 110 mph. I love the lower ratios of my 81 as it allows me to ride it as an adventure bike a lot easier and unfortunately now it is back home in Oz it really doesn’t get to see terminal velocity that much.
I'm often surprised when Goldwing riders are high performance enthusiasts. I've owned an '83, '88, and my current 2012 Goldwing. I once very briefly took my '88 up to 100 mph on a remote stretch of highway. I had an extra tall windshield on that bike at the time. It created a nice quite airspace that was free of wind turbulence for normal riding, but the windshield started to wobble at 100 mph. I was still a young guy in my 20s at the time, but that cured me of the need for speed! :eek:
 

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I think every Goldwing that has been built, runs in the 12s My ‘84A seems peppy, so I would think the standard model would be that much better.

I still have a couple of motorcycle magazines with Aspencade test back in 1984 and they were in the 12s, although I have
not looked at them in a long time.
 

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Glad I saved all my ole vintage mags etc, from back in the day :<)
 

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