However, I've run into a bit of a conundrum recently. About two years ago, my wife and I joined a motorcycle group that "...seeks to empower abused children to no longer be afraid of the world in which they live." My XS750 cafe racer,
While I can ride two up in the group on the Wee-Strom, it too is less than ideal for this purpose. First, surrounded by a big-bore Kawasaki Vulcan, a Honda VTX-1800, several Harley-Davidson's (go figure), and a bunch of H-D trikes, the Strom sticks out like a very tall, bright orange, sore thumb.
We talked it over, and decided that maybe I should sell the V-Strom and buy a more capable two-up bike. After reviewing the options, I had narrowed the list of potential mounts down to a 2016 Suzuki Bandit 1250, a 2015 Triumph Speed Triple,
No, none of these bikes were ideal, even if they were a step up from my V-Strom.
Then, the other night, my wife was looking at the bikes for sale on Craigslist when she found a 1978 GL1000 project. Hmmm...I like GL1000's...
|Brake Rebuild||The current owner already has removed the front brakes for a rebuild, and as I found with the XS750 project, neglected brakes are a nightmare. Rebuild these now before they end up in as poor shape as the front brakes on the Yammie were when I bought it.||K & L brake caliper rebuild kits, K & L master cylinder rebuild kits, new brake pistons (cheap, and solves a lot of problems), braided stainless steel brake lines.||$425|
|Dime City Cycles "Euro" Handlebars||As I recall, the stock GL1000 handlebars aren't that bad -- way better than those evil monstrosities, invented by the ghost of Torquemada himself, that Yamaha shipped on the XS750 -- but I'd like something a little sportier. This would be a much lower priority change, but I really want to replace the old brake lines before riding season, and I'm not going to buy braided stainless steel brake lines twice for this bike. That's just a waste of money.||Dime City Cycles "Euro" Handlebars||$50|
|New Headlight||Bike had a Vetter fairing; needs new lights and mounting hardware.||E-Bay "Dominator" headlights and cafe racer fork ears.||$140|
|Replace Timing Belts||Cheap insurance. Bike has an interference engine. If a timing belt breaks, you will be tearing down the engine to replace pistons and valves. That's why the engine on my first GL1000 project was in several Rubbermaid boxes when I acquired it.||Gates timing belts.||$30|
|Uni Foam Air Filter||Easy, inexpensive maintenance/performance upgrade item.||Uni foam air filter||$25|
|Ignition System Refurb||Spark plugs are a no brainer. Coils and wires are relatively inexpensive and simple to replace, also. Finally, points and condensers wear out, giving a weak spark. Replacing these parts should make for a better running engine.||DR8EIX spark plugs, coils t.b.d., 7mm silicone spark plug wires and NGK spark plug boots from Mike's XS, and a Sudco tune-up kit.||$200|
|Suspension Upgrades||Suspension is one of my key concerns. Vintage bikes are notoriously undersprung, and I've been happy with these springs and shocks on my XS750.
Note: I'd prefer Race Tech springs and valve emulators in the forks, but at 1/3 the cost, these win the cost/value argument.
|Progressive Suspension fork springs and Hagon 2810 TTSA shocks.||$414|
There are other things I'd like to change too, but this should be enough to get the bike to the point where it is reasonably reliable, comfortable, good looking, and capable of running with the best of them while two-up. I won't be schooling competent sportbike riders in the twisties on a vintage Goldwing, nor will I be the flashiest bike in the state, but this should be a vast improvement over the status quo. And, I'll get to regain some of that karma I lost when I sold my first GL1000 project, lol.
I'll go take a look at the GL1000 tomorrow, and who knows? Maybe by tomorrow night, I'll be the proud owner of yet another GL1000 project bike ;)
Edit: I bought the 'Wing:
There are a few maintenance items that need to be completed before it's ready to ride, but in all honesty, it's a very clean bike for its vintage. After looking it over, I've changed the planned maintenance slightly. There are a few things that have already been taken care of, and a few things that I probably won't change until after the bike is running (function first, cosmetics later -- a lesson I learned from the XS750 project). Here is a Google Sheets document outlining the plan in more detail. I'll leave the table above as a snapshot of the original plan, but the Google doc will be changing as work progresses.