Bad Coil?? - Honda Goldwing Forums
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 14
Bad Coil??

I have a 2004 GW1800 with 105K on it. It runs like a top. (except when it doesn't) which is 1% of the time.

I have posted this problem here before and gotten good advice. ("sounds like a coil problem")

When I am on a ride and stop for a hr. or so, the bike starts and runs on 4 cyl (I think) for 3 to 4 minutes. Then it picks up the other two cyls. and runs like a top again.

When I ride the Chief Joseph Highway between Cody, Wy and Cook City, Mt., the bike misses only when in a 10 mph switchback turn. As soon as you come out of the turn and hit the throttle it take off like a new bike. It runs great. But at each switchback it misses when applying an even throttle in the turn and returns to not missing as soon as you apply more throttle.

My questions today are:

1. Is this too much for me (with some mechanical ability (but not too much) to do myself?

2. What do you think it would cost to have a Honda dealer to fix?

I am kind of worried about having a dealer do it as I had one dealer said they wouldn't do it as they have never been that deep inside a GW 1800 because they never breakdown. (??)

I have also been on the web and the aftermarket coils are about $50 and the Honda part (coil) is about $250 to $300 per coil. (that's $750 for 3 coils

Anyone ever had a coil done on a GW 1800?

Thanks to all for your help in advance.

I truly hope you are all just beginning to smell spring.

Me, I still have 40" of snow (Yes 40") in my driveway (except where I plowed.) (one lane) and no room to put anymore snow!)

So my coil will have to wait at least another 3 weeks, just to get out of the garage. (I hope)

Happy Spring to all.


PS. No I am not in my "Fortress of Solitude"
I'm somewhere in the "Snowed in Western USA"
Clark Kent is online now  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 05:59 PM
Lifetime Premium
Chopin's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Centreville, VA 2008 Pearly White.
Posts: 22,705
Last spark plug change ?

Darksider since I finally saw the Light.
Chopin is online now  
post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 14
I put in new plugs as soon as the problem showed up. The plugs that come out were almost new, but I put new one's in and it didn't solve the problem, but now I have a spare set of plugs!


I stated way to high a price for Honda OEM coils. I said $250 to $300 each <WRONG

I found them from Honda for $125 each. I'm sure other suppliers have OEM Honda parts for less. (I hope)

Clark Kent is online now  
post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 06:25 PM
Senior Member
dsurley's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Stephenville, TX
Posts: 977
I am not sure if it is a coil or not....... the coils going bad that I have had experience with (cars mostly).... they react the other way..... work when they are cool and quit when they get hot.

I would try this first.
With the bike on the center stand
Get the the covers off so you can get to the plugs and plug wires.
(have plug wire pliers on hand, mine are made of plastic, so you don't get bit)
Start the bike and let it warm up, and with it running, pull and replace each plug wire from the plug,
listening for two things: the change in engine rpm and how rough it runs, and the snap, snap, snap of each fire as you slowly replace the wire. Compare the sound of each and every plug, may take a couple of rounds.
Then, since you said problem is right after you kill it and restart...... do it the way that usually causes the problem.
Then with it missing, if possible, do the above procedure again......

Maybe doing this will establish which cylinder(s) is(are) the culprit(s)

Questions to answer:
Does the firing snap sound the same as you ease the wire back on..... or is one weaker now?
If more than one cylinder, Does the same coil operate both?
If the snapping of the electric arc sounds the same...... swap a holes with with two plugs (missing cylinder with non missing cylinder) and try again. Then you can start to narrow down....plugs versus wires or coils.

IDMWT member #80
Never walk, when you can ride!

current ride : 2013 GL1800 Audio Comfort

Darkside Yokohama Avid ENVigor 195/55 R16

Past rides: '98 GL1500SE
'03 750 Kawasaki Vulcan
'81 850 Suzuki
'80 550 Suzuki
dsurley is offline  
post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 06:28 PM
Super Moderator
Cantankerous's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 10,548
Normally, a coil will get worse as it heats up. I can't imagine a coil breaking down at low RPM and clearing up at a higher RPM, that's backwards from how a coil will normally fail. This might sound like a silly question, but have you tried running Seafoam or injector cleaner through it? I may be wrong, but it just doesn't sound like a coil to me.
Terryj and dsurley like this.

2004 GL1800 Bloodstone Red Metallic
1988 GL1500/6 Martini Beige Metallic (Sold)
1984 GL1200 Pearl Saturn Red/Century Brown Metallic (Sold)
1981 Honda CM400T Candy Sword Blue with Metallic Light Blue (Cubed and Recycled)

Member #3480

Homo praesumitur bonus donec probetur malus

Cantankerous is offline  
post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 06:34 PM
Senior Member
dsurley's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Stephenville, TX
Posts: 977

this is the layout of the coils and wires
three coils....... one fires the two front cylinders
one fires the two middle cylinders
one fires the two back cylinders

So if the miss is all on one side......starts to lend itself to something to do with the throttle bodies.....left vs right

or one of the injectors is getting lazy

IDMWT member #80
Never walk, when you can ride!

current ride : 2013 GL1800 Audio Comfort

Darkside Yokohama Avid ENVigor 195/55 R16

Past rides: '98 GL1500SE
'03 750 Kawasaki Vulcan
'81 850 Suzuki
'80 550 Suzuki

Last edited by dsurley; 03-17-2019 at 06:40 PM.
dsurley is offline  
post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 06:50 PM
Lifetime Premium
Ron Robertson's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: N.W. Washington
Posts: 16,825
Can't say this is the same thing, but a few years ago a friend was having at problem with his 1800 running rough at low speed at time. He narrowed it down the O2 censer under the top cover forward of the gas cap on the right side and thought it was one the connections going bad. He wanted me to re-solder the connection, but what I found was with the wires held tight at the censor, if I moved the wires around it would still do it. We followed the wires back down the left side into a large wire harness. Removing
some of the tape we found were one of the wires was connected to two other wires with a crimp connector. Moving the connection around would cause the engine to stumble. I cut the connector off and solder the wires together and covered the connection with shrink tube, no more stumbling at low speed. The hardest part was getting the top cover to get at the harness. Might be worth a look.
Chopin likes this.

From the Northwest Corner
The Land of Tall mountains
Ron Robertson is online now  
post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-19-2019, 01:39 PM
budoka's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Athabasca, Alberta, short season & huge bugs
Posts: 25,155
I don't think it's a coil either. Might be a fuel delivery issue at low rpm. Fuel pressure?
dsurley likes this.

grab all the kicks you can baby, you only make this scene once!
current rides: '09 GL1800AD "SENSHI"; 2003 RVT1000r (RC51) track bike... certified m/c addict. IDMWT #12. GWRRA #028890
budoka is offline  
post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-19-2019, 05:32 PM
Senior Member
JK McDonald's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Dallas East -
Posts: 605
Alternator Performance -

Hey Clark - Have you checked the charging voltage of your alternator once the bike is up to running temp ? Perhaps you may even have a marginal battery. What kind of electrical gadgets (load) did you have turned on - heated seat, grips, massage chair ?

Just a thought but at low RPM if your alternator output falls off, your ignition would be running off the battery. As you come out of a slow switch back curve, you open the throttle and build the RPM back up, a sickly alternator could restore (increase) the charging voltage and your ignition system is happy again.

Ride Safe Michael

Last edited by JK McDonald; 03-19-2019 at 06:02 PM.
JK McDonald is offline  
post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-20-2019, 07:31 AM
Senior Member
Luv2fish's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Stafford, VA
Posts: 2,733
Since it seems to happen in switchback curves I would assume the bike is at a steep angle. What about a faulty bank angle sensor (I donít know what year they began with those). Youíre assuming it is running in 4 cylinders but any interruption in firing could be the issue.

Just a thought.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Terryj likes this.


2015 Goldwing NAV/ABS
Fredericksburg, Virginia

Luv2fish is online now  
Sponsored Links

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Honda Goldwing Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome