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My name is John and I`m new to this site and Goldwings in general. I`m looking at a 1986 Goldwing SEI with 56,000 miles. I know nothing about the bike except what the owner says. She looks beautiful, but are there any hidden problems with that year or model? I like the idea of not having carbs. I have rode HD for the last twenty years and would like to have a good experience with my first wing.Any input is more than welcomed!!
 

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John,

1st Welcome to the GWOF, we have a good place here with good people & discussion.

2nd the 1200's which is what the bike is had a commonly known weak Stator. It is actually the connections that is the issue & causes premature failure. There are many links about this & even a fairly reasonable conversion to a car alternator, called a "poorboy conversion" named fo the gent who started the process.

Here is a link for a site with a Goldwing History & also a link for the conversion.

Good Luck & Ride Safe.

http://www.goldwingfacts.com/goldwinghistory.htm

http://lloyddotson.com/poorboyalt/index.htm
 

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Welcome to the forum from Pennsylvania. Not to persuade you one way or the other, but I personally would look for a GL1500 (1988-2000). Lots of good used bikes in that range and availability of parts is not as big of an issue. If you do buy the 86 you will still be getting a good bike. Good luck and let us know what you do.. Ride safe and enjoy the forum....
 

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I recently bought an 85 GL 1200 LTD fuel injected and it runs like a scaled cat compared to other GL 1200's I've ridden. Mine sat in a garage for along time as it took several cans of sea foam and some Yamaha injector cleaner to get it to idle smoothly without dying. If this bike has been sitting for awhile you might also consider replacing all fluids. Good luck on your new Wing.
 

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Welcome from Seattle!

I never had a 1200, 1100 or a 1000. I agree with Two Wheel on this. There is a world of difference between the 1200 and the 1500. The 1500 was made for 13 years. The 1200, very short period of time. If you consider a good experience looking for parts in obscure places, then the 1200 would be a good bike to get. The savings you initially get on the purchase will be eaten up on maintaining it and it will also be reflective in the price when you do sell it. I don't mean to dish the 1200 owners, but standing where you are, you should look at all of your options.

Hard to fit a car tire on a 1200 too. Why is the PO selling it?

Honda fixed many things when it designed the 1500. They continued to fix on the 1500 too, so get one as new as you can afford.
 

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Smart move John, There are lots of good used Wings out there & they can have several hundred thousand miles put on them.
 

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hello gragertj, welcome to GWOF. pm sent
 

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Hello and welcome to the forum.
There are a lot of good Goldwings out there, you could even get a good deal on a 1500. Just keep looking, you can also check on Craigslist.
 

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Welcome to the forum from Down Under. I am going to be a bit different and say a good 1200 can go anywhere. You may have to spend a lot of $ if it is let go and that sound like what you do not want to do. So for all the reason above, get a 1500. I have put 1200 miles on my 1200 last year. Eric
 

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I love my 1800 but I still believe the 1500 is the bully of the wings. I don't think you can go wrong.
 

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Perhaps some folks like me, don't have allot of money to spend on a Wing which is why I originally bought an 85 GL 1200. Perhaps one should buy as much Wing as they can afford. I've seen GL 1200's in good condition going for 3000-3500 and I've seen some 88/89 GL 1500's going for 3500-4500. My original goal was to buy a GL 1500 but didn't have enough money so I got the 1200. I'm really glad I did though as I've ridden the fool out of it in the last month and have put on 3000 miles. At first I felt it was too much bike for me, too big and too heavy but I decided to spend some time in the saddle and give it a chance. If I had given up in the beginning I would have returned to riding Maxi Scooters and would have missed out on the greatest bike ever built; The Honda Goldwing. I've already purchased a GL 1500 as God blessed me with a little more money so I could move up from the 1200. I don't regret having bought the 1200 because it was my first Wing experience and has been the stepping stone to a 1500. If money is a little tight and you're on a limited budget, start out small and work your way up.

Here's me at a Texas Two Wheeled Touring pie run earlier this month with my 1985 GL 1200 LTD. Today I rode with friends on a 350 mile ride around NE Texas. What a hoot that was and what a joy to get my last ride on my 1200 as I think I've got it sold as the buyer is picking up on Tuesday.

 

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I am right there with you Danb: The thing with old bikes is finding the old bike that has been well maintaned. So one that is the bike still being used for long trips is the one that I would want. Then there is the spare parts issue. So far I have got all the parts that I have needed, without too much trouble. I am very happy with my bike and spent more on parts than you guy's spend to buy a 1200. ($3000) A rough 1200 will bring $4500, and a top condition will bring $8000 in the land Down Under. I think with the work I gave done on mine would put it up in the top condition. I would be happy to ride right around Australia or the USA when I get there. Enjoy that 1500 and give me some ride reports. Eric
 

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Nice looking bike Eric. If it wasn't for Larry I probably would have kept my 1200 allot longer as I didn't think I could afford a 1500 right now. It's all his fault. No, really and truly, there's some really great deals out there on both 1200/1500. I found one just before Larry and I talked down near Austin, Tx.; an 89 GL 1500 with 100k for 3500. I thought that was a good deal until I talked with Larry and found an even better deal. Got to admit, it sure is fun looking for a new bike. It's almost as much as fun as having one. Well, almost.
 

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Welcome gragertj, no matter what you ride or end up riding, while this is a Goldwing based site, we don't discriminate. So yeah, like Larry says, stick around. BTW, I rode a GL 1200 ('84 Interstate) for 167,000 mostly very happy miles. Did go through 3 stators, but that was before I knew about the proper fix on the wiring. Keep looking and if you find one that has the 'hard wire fix' or alternator conversion done, Bob's your uncle:D
 
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