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Discussion Starter #1
Back in May I bought an '83 Interstate and have put money, time, blood, sweat (I live in Florida!), and, well, no tears, into it. It was running great and was beginning to look quite nice and then back in October it started running poorly over a period of about a week. I did some troubleshooting to figure out what has gone wrong but I'm not very good at it and now I can't even get it started. Because the bug to ride had bitten so badly, I went out and bought an '04 1800. I am loving the new (to me) ride and don't plan on putting any more of the above mentioned items into the '83. So, I've been planning on parting it out to recoup some of my investment. Those of you who have done this, is it worth the time tearing down, cleaning, posting, and shipping? Would it be better to try to sell it as is or would I take a huge beating on it?
 

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Just so you are aware, you will probably end up with a lot of stuff that just won't sell. As far as how far in the hole you are going to go, well, I don't know how much you paid.

Why not put the whole bike up on *that* aution site, less hassle, and it's all gone as one.

I've parted out cars before, it took a long time, but I was lucky, I sold everything as the car was very very rare (Citroën SM). The GL1100 is not that rare.

Cosmo
 

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Yeah there are always a lot of parts you end up stuck with that wont sell. I have parted out a lot of bikes & you end up with quite a bit left over usually. I don't know what you have in it but it might be worth just selling whole if you don't want parts laying around for ever. I know you put a lot of sweat in it I am in Florida to a couple hours from you.
 

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I've done both when I had my shop. You can realize a bit more money out of the bike by parting out but it's a lot of work to get good prices. I always cleaned up each part I sold on eBay which took some time and effort. Then there's the packaging and getting the part shipped. When you have a bunch of parts on sale it's a bit of a pain listing them all then keeping track of what each auction is doing. Most of the sales I made were okay it was just the amount of effort a bunch of small sales take.
If I were you I'd sell the bike for parts. It's a quick clean way to realize some money and will help someone who's working to get a good old machine running again. Did I mention a lot easier?
 

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I technically "parted out" two vehicles, a VW cabrio and a BMW 540i. Not the whole cars, but a big group of parts. I did it all on flea bay. I used a scale that was tested to within a couple ounces of the one at my post office and measured each box perfectly to enter in the info for their "shipping calculator". It was under estimated on EVERY package, to the point that when the stack of parts was gone and I tallied it up, I grossed about $1600 total and only netted about $450. I was pretty upset, but all ebay had to say was "try to contact the buyers and see if they'll make up the difference". I haven't sold anything on there since.

Moral of the story is, parting out is a lot of work and you have to watch your back or that's where you'll take it... but if you do it right (not my way) there is potential for more return.
 

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Well first off if you EBAY DO NOT use any of their JUNK!!

Just do a simple listing with good details and description and host your own pictures on a free site you can link to, or like me my own site. Do not pay there stupid fees for extra pics or put up with the stupid pages of pics ther do that do not display well for many of us.

As for shipping, figure it out for yourself then put in the shipping cost in your listing!
DO NOT let Ebay figure it for you!
If for example your shipping from FL. then figure cost to ship to WA. and put that or a little less as your shipping price.
Figure the longest distance and estimate your package a little heavier than it will be.
Try not to gouge on the shipping, but at least you cover your butt on it.

If YOU figure shipping is $20 then you charge $20, do not let Ebay estimate at $10 shipping then you pay the $20!

As far as rather to part it out or sell it as a whole bike, it's a crap shoot.
You may make more $$ in parts, but how much time and shipping costs, Paypal Fees, and if Ebay their fees?
Taking less as a whole bike not running may be worth more as a fast sell you don't have to mess with and could be doing other things or out riding instead of stripping and cleaning parts.
 

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For me time and shop space were the biggest considerations. It takes a lot of time. I found that the sales go pretty good to a point and then they almost stop. I was left with half a bike in the garage, too expensive to put back on the road, so I was about to haul frame, eng, forks and wheels to a wrecking yard
when I sold the rest to a guy for a trike project. That took close to 2 years. I
won't be doing that again. Thankfully I broke even.
 

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If I did not already have so many projects already. I would consider looking at this. I would like to build an old stripped down wing.
 

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I have found that with me now living in a very rural area, it is next to impossible for me to be able to sell anything "locally".

And shipping out now via the USPO is so expensive, oh my garsh...
I dropped nearly $60 sending out Christmas gifts. Would have been a lot cheaper to just point and click on the internet and let them do it for me.
 

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Same thing for me John. When I moved here I had a pick up and trailer full of older Wing parts and three 1100s. It didn't take long for me to realize the area here is just too small for selling rebuilt Wings. Too few old ones to buy and too small of a market to sell the finished ones. I ended up selling all my stuff in one lot to a guy who lived close to Portland. He showed up with a large U-Haul truck and we just about packed it tight. I was sorry to quit, the dealing in 1100s in Tacoma/Seattle was working pretty well and I'd been making fairly decent money for a hobby.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, you all scared me out of parting out the '83. You convinced me to sell it in one piece but it bothered me that I would take such a beating on a non-running motorcycle. So, I decided to do a little more investigating before pronouncing it completely dead. There was definitely a knock low in the engine when it finally gave up the ghost back in October. Although I was convinced that it was a bearing on the crank, I was curious to see if I could get it started again. So I pulled it out last night and much to my surprise after a little coaxing with the choke, it fired up and ran--but very roughly. The knocking was still very noticeable. If I gave it any throttle it would die instantly. I restarted it and let it warm up and after a short while it would finally allow me to rev it up and at the higher RPMs there was no knock! I did a little research and found that the symptoms were possible evidence of a leak on the intake somewhere. I've read on several occasions that out of sync carbs can make it knock but never guessed that it would sound as harsh as mine. Sure enough though, the #2 carb intake had soot around the front and smelled of gas. I believe I have overreacted and discovered that possibly all it needs is O rings on the intake tubes (I said I was bad at troubleshooting!). I am still going to put it up for sale but now I will be able to sell it as a running bike!

Thank you all for your input.
 

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Yes indeed these four bangers will make an ungodly knocking sound when out of sync, especially when you open the throttle suddenly. Carbs can be a real challenge to work on for these bikes but it's not really rocket science. There's lots of information on the site about carb problems. Randakks cycle shack is a great place for information and parts for the four cylinder bikes especially the 1000s and 1100s.
Your problem sounds more like a stuck or leaking float valve. If that is the problem be sure to use only a Honda OEM needle and valve seat, a lot of the aftermarket ones tend to leak.
Take a look at your spark plugs, if one carb is running overrich from a leaking float valve it will normally show up as a black sooty spark plug compared to the others. It's really unusual for one of these engines to have rod or bearing trouble they really are nearly bullet proof.
 

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I agree with Paul.

I really feel you have out of sync carbs. either because they aren't sync'd properly or because of what Paul has described.
Yep, it sure does sound like one cylinder isn't pulling its own weight. An 1100 service manual and common tools along with a home made manometer can sure help clear up a problem like this.

Lots of links to making a cheap and dirty manometer. I've used a couple different variations over the years, makes it easy to check for misadjusted carbs.

https://www.google.com/search?q=homemade+carburetor+synchronizer&sourceid=ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-US:IE-SearchBox&ie=&oe=&rlz=
 

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Last year I was given a free 81 Interstate, with fairing and some luggage, the carbs had been removed as was also a large chunk of wiring, coils and air box, no papers, engine cylinders too far scored to use, BUT... it has a usable rear brake master cylinder, air compressor, gauges, air shock, basically a fair amount of goodies a lot of people would want. And then I bought an 84, its a running engine chopper project I found at a private Harley shop, just engine, frame and tires, but with a clear title.
So far I have no plans on what to do with eiter or combining the parts to make one.
And being in Alaska its too expensive to ship out while at the same time very few classic Wing owners up here so no local sale, so its just another couple of basket cases.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I went from overreacting to over-simplifying. I replaced the O rings on the intake tubes last night. Both of the front ones had evidence of leaks (obviously where you couldn't see it around the lower fairing). Well . . . it runs a little better but it surely needs a total rebuild on the carbs. Close inspection revealed a couple of gas leaks and Paul, you are right, it does have leaking float valves.

So, at least I don't have to part it out (I'm still shaking from the horror stories!). Selling it in need of a complete carb rebuild seems preferable to me than spending $250+ on the parts and doing it myself. So, I'll see what I can get for her as is.

Thanks again for all the input.
 

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Paul. You have an 1800 now! I have a 1500 that runs great and I put lots into it thinking I would ride it forever. It was my first Goldwing and a year later, an 1800 just talked to me! Now I have both and debate keeping two wings or selling the 1500. The way I look at selling the 1500, she did her job for me. It is high mileage to most and hard to figure out a good selling price on it. Hope you get what you want out of the bike. Did she do her job making you happy? What does older bikes sell for? I am debating on being a two bike owner and experiencing benefits of each. The space they take up is my only downfall. I also hate the idea one sits as I favor the other. I only have one butt!
 

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If the bike is in reasonable shape other than the carb problems it might be worth your money to look into a carb rebuild by a good shop. Randakk's Cycle Shak has a listing of carburetor rebuilders he's approved. If he says they're good, they're good. It would run a bit more than $250 but you'd get them back looking like new with all new parts and adjustments.
http://randakks.com/

http://www.randakksblog.com/randakks-approved-carb-rebuilder-program-2/
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Mark, as you know the price a Goldwing sells for is as difficult to understand as the weather! I have done a lot of scouring of eBay, Craigslist and Cycletrader and the selling prices range widely. Obviously, I think it's worth more than a potential buyer because I have put a lot of time into this bike. But I can't price it by sentiment. So, Paul, while I would love to present the next owner with a bike that ran beautifully as it did for me, it seems like a huge gamble to pour another $500 and ultimately lose in when I sell it.
 
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