Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

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groupus
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Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#1

Post by groupus »

First of all, I want to say thanks to all of the members of this forum for your insight and knowledge. This site is a goldmine of information without which I never would have been able to do what I have done to this bike. This is my second bike I have built and I have helped build 4 more for friends, working with limited tools and funds. Anyway, here is where my wing stands:

So I bought a 78 GL1000 in January of 2012 on a whim for $400. It was was ugly looking, but from what I could ascertain, in decent mechanical order. It ran, but would not hold an idle due to clogged jets.

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The project went on until March, working in the parking lot and carrying parts in and out of my second floor apartment. This phase on my project is documented here: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=38662.
I'm very happy with how it turned out, and I rode the heck out of it.

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Then, August of last year, a bad thing happened...

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Even though I had replaced the timing belts when I built it, I had foolishly purchased cheap chinese replacements. This was before I knew better; an expensive lesson. The new ones are gates, and I made these sexy new tensioners. See the rebuild here: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=49121

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That head rebuild took me nearly 2 months because I had never done anything like it before. I learned so much from this site in order to do it properly and replace all of the "while your in there" parts. Also, thanks to the members for supplying me with spare parts, the support here is amazing.
Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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groupus
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#2

Post by groupus »

After I got it all back together, I managed to ride for a total of less than 200 mile before I realized something was wrong with the charging system. Sure enough, the stator was bad on all leads, so out it came.

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I was apprehensive about tearing into this part too since it involved removing the engine. I delayed for a while, but then decided one night to pull it all apart, with the help of the better part of a bottle of whiskey.. The weekend before I started a new job.

Yup, stator was fried, so onto the next phase of projects for this bike. I got a fancy new Rick's motorsport stator.

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I did this back in October, ordering parts and assessing the situation. I decided to replace the clutch, oil seals, dry rotted tires, gaskets, and freshen up my 2 year old rattle can paint job too (In the above pic I had plasti-dipped the side covers to cover up the chipping and fading, but the rubberized texture is not good for where your clothing needs to move against it).

Because of my new full time job, I did not start trying to reassemble until this January. Once I got motivated, I painted the engine and rear cover.

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Then I moved onto the clutch to get the engine buttoned up. It turns out the clutch i ordered 3 months ago was the wrong size. Apparently there is a difference between the early 75 part and the regular 75-79 part. Luckily, the seller allowed me to send it back, even though I had ordered it 3 months ago. I got the new one and resumed work.

Interestingly enough, the one old friction plate with the larger tabs was worn down completely, but the rest of the old plates were still within the service limit. They, and the new plates, were all around 3.5 mm. I believe that the bike had sat long enough to cause the rest of the plates to stick together. I replaced all of the friction disks, but I may be able to clean and reuse this pack in the future, with a new "big Plate". By the way, I opted to chuck that clutch damper plate.

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Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#3

Post by groupus »

On to installing that fancy new clutch. Looks so pretty without the damper plate!

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Now, onto installing that new clutch. I had originally used a hammer and screwdriver to remove the center nut, but I had since bought a 4 wheel drive brake tool, as mentioned by other members here. Its a fun looking little cube I got at harbor freight for like $5. I think I'll hang it from the frame like a biker bell! :lol:

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It was a little difficult trying to tighten the center nut with the engine out of the frame, but I found a creative way to hold the parts while I torqued it to 45 ft-lb, per the manual. Tighten a strap around the clutch basket, then wrap it several times around the stator magnet so that it pulls in the opposite direction that you are torquing. I pulled the rest of the length of strap around the output shaft and stood on it to keep it from slipping. This worked well, but I did have to do some yoga to keep the tool from slipping off the nut, the strap from moving, and the engine from tipping over while I wrenched.

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Once that was tight and the new lock washer's tabs bent over, I carefully tightened the plate lifter down on the springs evenly and to the recommended 9ft-lbs to avoid breaking the plate, and I promptly broke the one bolt off. :IDTS: I will spare you the details, but needless to say, there was a repeat of several of these steps.

Finally, after all that I have the engine reassembled and ready to go back in the frame! However, I want to clean out the gas tank while I have access to it, as well as clean the carbs again (might as well).

To be continued...
Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#4

Post by ericheath »

Parts porn, I'm liking it!! I learn a lot from these as I have never seen the innards yet. One of these days.
Whatever I suggest here should be given ample time for a moderator to delicately correct. I apologize in advance.
77 WING, 1200 engine with 77 heads, cams, gl1100 foot pegs, Magna V65 front end, 764A carbs, [-gone Suzuki M109 monoshock--, replaced with gl1100 shocks] gl 1200 swing arm, gl1500 final drive, wheel and rear brakes Valkyrie seat, Meanstreak tank, Sportster pipes, Power Arc ignition off crank.
77 Wing. black
83 Wing, in pieces
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#5

Post by groupus »

Today, PA got hit with a heck of a pile of snow. I stayed home and took some time to do work on the wing. The engine looks good all buttoned up.

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I took some time to clean out the sump filter, paint the cover, and reinstall it with fresh allen head bolts. The o-ring gasket cleaned up nice. I also ruined my neutral indicator switch trying to get the engine out, so rather than buy an $80 replacement, I sealed it with jb weld. It was broken before and I am not running any indicator lights. I will ground the wire later and just have to use the clutch when starting.
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I also cleaned the wheels and mounted my own tires. This was my first time doing that. It took some practice,but I'm happy I learned to do it on my own rather than pay a shop $20 to $30 per tire. I will try balancing them later, but will probably use dyna beads if they need anything.

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I'm going to get some more paint now and stop at a hardware store. I want to get a one to two inch section of pipe to put in the front forks. This will preloaded the suspension and make it a bit stiffer. It would dive when braking before, and I will have the forks lowered through the trees and lower rear suspension. This should keep it from bottoming out on anything important.

Ps. Kerosene heater in the garage makes a world of difference.
Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#6

Post by groupus »

So after struggling for way too long, the gas tank finally came out of the bike. It looks like it is impossible to get through the frame, but you have to jack it around and pull it out through the back. I had to remove every wire and hose that was routed near the tank to get every mm of clearance that I could. You have to take out the rear fender and plastic inner fender, but your do not have to completely remove the battery box and rear brake master cylinder. Just unbolt them and wiggle them down and to the left side some. Still a huge pain. I would not want to try that again with the engine in the bike.

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Once I got it out and the gass drained (gas spilled everywhere of course, and I'm working with a shop light near a kerosene heater), I found a little supprise inside. The PO had lost a gas can spout in there! :lol: Also, there is a fair amount of surface rust, but it appears to be in good shape.

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I ran a copper wire down through the fuel pickups. Now, my reserve should work. It will be really nice to get more miles out of a tank of gas. dancr

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I rinsed the whole thing out in the kitchen sink and not much came out. Next, I filled it with with 2 gallons of vinegar, shook, and let it set overnight. Every time I walk past it, I give it another shake and lay it down at a different angle. I'll do this for another two day, drain, then neutralize it with baking soda and water. I will then slosh it with Marvel Mystery oil to keep it from rusting.

The only thing I am not sure about is how to get it completely dry before coating it. I can put it in front of a fan, but I don't think that will dry it fast enough before surface rust can start to form. I don't own a hairdryer or heat gun or anything better. I think that if I drain it as best I can then add little bit of isopropyl alcohol, that may help any moisture evaporate faster. I have also heard of people using alcohol to remove water from gas. The theory is that it will chemicaly mix with the water and allow it to be burnt through the engine with the rest of the gas. THat seems like a viable solution, if you believe everything your read on the internet. type1
Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#7

Post by groupus »

Well, the tank is still soaking in vinegar. It's slow, but looks like it is making some progress. Anyway, what I did yesterday was add some preload spacers to the front forks. Stock, the forks have absolutely no preload, which makes them pretty soft. My other bike, a Suzuki Savage ls650, comes with a 4 or 5 inch section of tube in the top of the forks that preloads the springs. I added another 2 inch piece of pipe below the springs and above the inner tube to lower it by that much. Instead of trimming the stock piece, I left it to add additional preload to the progressive springs. I like the way this has firmed up the suspension, so I figured I would try the same thing in the Wing. I picked up two 2 1/2 inch sections of 3/4 inch galvanized pipe and added them to the top of the springs. It was a bit of a struggle re-installing the caps, but not much more than it is on my Savage - and that bike weighs less than half as much. Right now, it is very firm. I can put my full weight - 180lbs - on both forks and they barely budge. Individually, they compress an inch or so, about half of what they used to. I'll see how they work out with 600lbs of bike on top and maybe trim the pipes some. It is very a simple mod and easily adjusted or reversed.

As you can see, there is no preload in the suspension, which makes for a soft ride and lots of braking dive:

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And now with a simple spacer. I suggest placing piece of wood on top of the cap to press it down with your full weight while you or an assistant twists the fork tube to start threading it on. I didn't do this and may have bruised my palms :oops:

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Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#8

Post by RonHolly »

I'm very impressed with your perseverance! Limited work space, cold and probably not much help to assist you. (I'm guessing.). Your doing a great job and I really like your Cage bike.

I have bought two bikes in the last couple weeks to do the same with one of them. Having trouble deciding which one will be the custom Cafe/Bobber. '77 Gl1000 and '80 GL1100 Interstate. Want to get the bugs out of the Interstate before I decide. Anyway that's my work. Your providing very good pics that keep it interesting and I will keep following your progress. Keep warm!
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#9

Post by gltriker »

quote: "The only thing I am not sure about is how to get it completely dry before coating it. I can put it in front of a fan, but I don't think that will dry it fast enough before surface rust can start to form."

What are you planning to coat it with?
Cliff

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RE: a thorough fuel tank cleaning
"And your carbs will thank you. They no longer live down stream from a sewage plant." -gregforesi tumb2
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Cliff

'75 GL1000 home built trike; http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=39996
October,2017 BOTM :shock: https://nakedgoldwingsclub.com/forum/page/Welcome

previous rides:
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#10

Post by groupus »

RonHolly, you're right about all of that. I live by myself and work 2 jobs, the one of which is at a restaurant. Business has slowed down there during the winter and given me more time to work on the bike. That also means less money, but hey, I can still afford beer and bike parts. :lol:

You lucky dog, you get 2 wings to wrench on! lolol From what I've seen, the 77's have more of a square tank, progressive spring rear shocks, rims that are close to the same size, and chrome fenders that lend themselves to the cafe style. The 80 has a more tapered tank, a smaller rear wheel, and the air shocks that fit the bobber profile. That's just my thoughts. It all depends on what you like, what condition they are in, and what parts you plan on using or replacing. If the 77 has spoke wheels, that may influence what you choose too.


gltriker, I will just be coating the tank with Marvel Mystery Oil until I can fill it with gas. I don't trust any of those cream coat products, and I would imagine they could clog up the fuel pickups.

Speaking of the gas tank, this will be the third day it has been soaking. The vinegar is pretty murky but there is still plenty of rust stuck to the inside of the tank. I can actually wipe it off with my finger easily and the metal is good underneath. I should probably strain the vinegar and mix it with some salt to up the potency. Then I'll add it back to the tank with some nuts and bolts and shake it around for a few more days.

In the mean time, I need to prep for painting. I hate painting.
Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#11

Post by groupus »

The tank soak continues. I've added what I like to call the "party mix".

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I also cleaned out the carbs. There was a fair amount of sludge in there for having been cleaned out two years ago. That's what happens when you don't clean the tank out first.

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Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#12

Post by Gowing »

To go where those have never gone before, or something like that. I'm learning from you groupus. My stator, carbs and clutch are down the road for me. Great pictures.
Thanks
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#13

Post by sunnbobb »

citric acid is the way to fly to clean that tank. Jimmyz has a thread
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#14

Post by Easter »

Enjoyed your report and appreciate your perseverance.
Bikes at present:
80 GL1100 Interstate: Now a Cafe Racer called DRAGON WING.
75 XL 250 just for fun
83 XL 600r with a 2004 XR650L engine
And a couple of older BMW GS adventure bikes (keep hoping for an adventure!)
A fleet of parts bikes awaiting resuscitation or customization or abandonment :IDTS:
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Re: Re, Re, Re Buillding a 78 Cafe

#15

Post by groupus »

Here is my final verdict on the vinegar-tank-derusting-treatment: waste of time.
Although the vinegar did desolve some rust and turn a murky brown, it was not effective enough. I tried adding salt, which is supposed to make it more potent, but this method reached the point of diminishing returns after a few days. I thought about buying 2 more gallons, but for the price of about 1 of those I got 2 quarts of The Works toilet cleaner. It is 20% Hydrogen Chloride. I tested it on a nut that was a solid ball of rust, diluted with about 50% water, and let it sit overnight. The next morning it was completely rust free. The tank and other parts I had soaking in pure vinegar was going on a week and still not even close. I put 1 quart mixed with about a gallon of water in the tank and sloshed it for a day with the mix of nuts and bolts. It worked great, but did flash rust quickly on the parts that weren't submerged. I gave it last few shakes before neutralizing with baking soda, rinsing with alcohol, then gas, dried, and finally coated with MMO.
The Works works! lolol
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I also spent like 15 hours yesterday prepping and painting various parts: the forks, radiator wings, rear fender, gas tank, trees, etc. That's not everything, but enough to get me started reassembling (did I mention I hate painting). I used oven cleaner to strip the paint and painted with the same type of ceramic engine paint, primer, and clear that I used on the engine. Its tough stuff and on sale at Advanced Auto.

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Faster, faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death. ~Hunter Thompson

every now and then, when things are not going to well in the shop, i ask myself why i do it. and the answer is that riding is good....but time in the shop is also good. - CYBORG

78 gl1000 cafe build: http://ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=51461

79 full fairing - current status: Haunted http://www.ngwclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60334
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