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OT rejuvenating a stored motorcycle

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  • OT rejuvenating a stored motorcycle

    I seem to have inherited a motorcycle. It's an '82 or so Aspencade. My dad wants me to have it now because he'll never ride it again- something to do with being over 80 yrs old-

    It's been stored in one of those containers along with other stuff for nearly 10 yrs, and I suspect it should have some tlc before it gets fired up again. The battery will be shot, of course, but I don't know the state of the fuel tank or the carbs (or the tires ). Mechanically, it was in excellent running condition when put away. The tires would have been good at the time, but sitting for so long-

    I have an estimate of 500 to 1000 for a shop to prepare it to run again. I would be able to do some of what they would do, such as replacing the plugs, cleaning the tank, that kind of thing. I'm wondering what problems I'll be likely to encounter with this bike, say like possibly needing diaphrams in the carbs, etc. Also, should I be squirting anything into the spark plug holes to possibly help the rings?

    I'm not even sure I'd want this bike, but sooner or later I'll have to deal with it, so I might as well do it now. I'm going to visit my dad tomorrow (a 6 hr ride) and the bikes future will have to be decided before I come home.

    Any advice?
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

  • #2

    I am no bike expert but I have worked over a few old cars. I would pull the plugs and squirt in a fair load of a light oil. Drain the gas tank and the carbs if you can. Drain and refill the crankcase oil. If that bike has the kick start option crank it over that way slowly a few times to lube the cylinders and rings with the plugs out. Next run it with the electric starter to build oil pressure and lube the engine without starting it, stand clear of the spark plug holes, that oil you put in there will now leave and try to coat you . Put the plugs back in, a little fresh gas and give her a try. The next thing to do will depend on how she runs. I would replace the tires and make sure to check the brakes (replace the fluid and bleed well). Thats where I would start.


    PS: Also flush the cooling system and refill with antifreeze and obliviously a new battery .

    Happily working on my second million Gave up on the first


    • #3
      U may be in luck, 82 gas will stink like old fuel but it will likely be better than this new crap that has sat for 2 yrs......a shot of ATF through an oil can into each hole will help and dump the tank and mix in a lite mix of 2 stroke oil will help lube things initially and add, if you can prelube great, find where the oil sender threads in and fill a grease gun with 30W and stroke it in. If you must you might have to yank the carbs and clean in carb cleaner for a day or two, don't submerge past shaft seals etc and pull the floats if their composite material........good luck.
      Opportunity knocks once, temptation leans on the doorbell.....


      • #4
        That was a hell of a nice bike when new. A good service that includes all fluids (suspension, too), wheel bearings, and new lamps. Tires have to go. The carbs are probably crudded up but easily fixed, the brakes should be carefully examined and serviced as needed. The throttle cable is probably rusted shut or about to be.

        If the upholstery is good then you'll have a nice bike that could bring a good price. A good treatment with S-100 and chrome polish should have it looking good.


        • #5
          Radiator, etc. .

          It would be a good idea to clean the radioor out while you;re at it. The new coolant should be phosphate free for aluminum use. I used to run GM Dex-Cool in my former 1994 Goldwing. Probably it would be a good idea to replace all of the rubber hoses in the cooling section as well.

          As far as the rest of the bike, when you change tires, it would be advisable to remove the rear drive unit from the right side of the swing arm and clean up and lubricate the splines on the drive shaft. Honda makes a high molybdenum content paste for that purpose but any grease with moly will work. LEft nattended, the units can get dry and wear the splines excessively.

          The early Goldwings were a very nice motorcycle and hundreds of millions of happy miles have been run on the fours and sixes (1975 through 2000) I dont know much about the later ones but they are similar.

          There are several known weak spots on the early Goldwings. The alternators seem to be failure-prone. That wouldn't be too bad if you didn't have to remove the engine to get at it, but I understand that you either have to remove it or at leasr completely loosen it to move it forward. The parts aren't cheap, either.

          In fact some folks have abandoned the original alternator unit in favor of a belt-driven alternator from a Chevy Sprint or similar unit. There is a website on the internet that shows how one fellow did it.

          Another weak spot that I have heard of is the rear hub on the '82 model. Sometimes, the bearing holes can get hogged out when the bearings start to fail. They can be machined out and sleeved from what I have heard. You could look at your wheel bearings when you have the wheels off to check that issue.

          Lastly, the water pump seals sometimes have been known to wear permitting engine oil to ener the radiator system. That's easy to check for, however and it's not all that common anyway.

          The Goldwings are the greatest bie on the road. My 1500 was a great touring bike. I had to give up on solo riding with it due to my seeming inability to hold it up. Fully-loaded it was close to 1,000 pounds!

          I sold it in favor of my present Harley Ultra so I could get a factory hookup for a sidecar and that's my present ride. With my bum left leg, it's fun to ride anything and I take my wife on rides all of the time with the hack.

          The Gold Wing Road Riders Association (GWRRA) maintains a nice website where you can get technical help and find parts for sale.

          Happy Trails. You'll enjoy that bike, I'm sure.
          Last edited by gnm109; 08-11-2008, 04:32 AM.


          • #6
            Don't forget the stator, with all the dissimilar metals in it it may not work.


            • #7
              Thanks for all the replies. I'd be on the road by now except my friend is a bit late getting here. First order on this road trip is Tim Hortons!

              I'll be seeing the bike tomorrow, so I will keep in mind all the things you fine folks have suggested.
              I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-


              • #8
                Can't add anything to what's been said but I had one of those. Bought it new in 82. Loaded with just about every option available at the time. Man, that was a sweet bike. I added electronic cruise control and of course, about 50lbs or lights. I put over 30,000 miles on it in three years. Made three non-stop trips from Ohio to Texas and countless road trips into Canada and Eastern US. Fell asleep on it twice. It's like riding in a Cadillac with the windows down. Be safe and enjoy.


                • #9
                  Although there's been some excellent advice, I think you're being a little optimistic about the carbs.

                  We don't know if the bike was stored with a full tank of gas or not. The ideal situation is to drain the tank and carbs before long-term storage. If gas was left in the carbs for this long, chances are high that the various jets and needles have been damaged beyond repair.

                  It's not a matter of cleaning the carbs, although of course that needs to be done first. The gas will turn to a gel-like varnish over a period of time, and this will etch into the metals and permanently damage the extremely fine and precise tolerances that are needed for metering the air/fuel mixture. Seals may also be beyond repair.

                  I just finished re-building my Honda 250 Magna, and this is what happened to me after a year of storage. Then again, I was using China gas!

                  And no, I didn't drain the tank. Stupid me, I never realized it would be sitting that long. One thing kind of led to another.....

                  Good luck!


                  • #10
                    Rubber MIGHT be OK!

                    Everyone may be excessively pessimistic about the tires and hoses. If they were stored out of sunlight, and away from chemical fumes, they may be just fine. I'd look the tires over really carefully though.


                    • #11
                      I would make sure to change the rubber brake lines and would probably tear the calipers and master cylinders down if there is any question about water contamination. I have always had trouble with the hydraulics when resurrecting something after that long. Might not get you right away, but I don't take chances with bike brakes. The other thing that has burned me before was fuel tank rust that clogs the filter or worse goes straight into the carbs. Had to walk about four miles from a choked rice burner in the dark with no clue where I was in the day before cell phones. And that one had only sat for a couple of years.


                      • #12
                        A few good website on motorcycle carbs are:


                        • #13
                          Check the oil and other fluids, put new gas in, charge the battery and then go from there, no sense dumping money in something you may not want.
                          Non, je ne regrette rien.


                          • #14
                            Oil is several million years old when you put it in. What is a few years after that? Ride/run it for while to get whatever rust might have accumulated loose and collected in the filter before changing. Spark plugs? Save your $$ unless you see or find something wrong with them. Same with wheel bearings. Good luck and keep us posted.


                            • #15
                              Well, not much to say. I didn't even get to see the bike. My dad came down with a case of food poisoning and could barely move let alone deal with any of his possessions. He's much better as of this morning, but we had to return home so we'll deal with it another time.

                              Thanks again for the advice, this helps me be better prepared to deal with things next time.
                              I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-