1983 Honda GoldWing Interstate

                                                            The Story of "Retread"

         Work Started 11 April 2010 - still modifying...



“Retread” is a born-again Goldwing.  Not sure if he’s Christian, but I’m pretty sure he’s got a soul.

 Thus began the rebirth of the 1983 GL 1100I now known as “Retread”. I say “He” because there’s nothing feminine about him. He’s not so lean, he can still be mean, & he’s a fighting machine zipping through traffic each day with the best of them. The looks we get at bike nights say it all. Two old farts still chugging along, beginning to age but fighting it all the way.

He sat outside in back of the shop waiting to become a donor. He had flat “feet” and was wearing a set of worn out “sneakers”. Though he carried three bags, they were empty. He didn’t look that aged for a 27 year old. His color hadn’t faded or been retouched. His “ticker” seemed to have a strong beat. I couldn’t leave him to become an organ donor just because he lost his “birth certificate”. If that were the case for everyone, then we would have a different president right now.

I brought him home in the rain but he didn’t mind at all. He stayed in my trailer till we knew what to do to “correct” the paperwork problem.

I had a frame (or three) laying around that never went up on ebay (no time), so I chose the best looking/newest (1981) and began the swap over. It all looked like it would fit….. needed a stud for the signal cancel thingamabob under the neck but I have a stick welder so…….

:p> Cleaned the frame and began stripping the old.....


Cleaned and slid the engine over, belts of course, rebuilt the carbs following the “shop talk” overhaul article by Roady – Fantastic info. Only good tank was the 83 and that was where the “fun” began. Seems that the 83 tank is just a bit different…..The petcock is back and up just enough to require some grinding of the rear 3 point  mounting bracket.

(Petcock pics will be linked soon.)

Next fun came when I noticed that the rear tire was “somewhat close” to the front part of the 81 swingarm – seems there is a small difference there too. Pumpkin and axle mounted fine just a tad shorter. Seems to be ok so far. Changed the brakes to 81 style.  Call me old but I prefer to have the rear ONLY on the foot pedal. I also hate ABS on cars – Maybe when I’m older and can’t remember to pump the brakes - but not yet.

Fairing – NOT….. The Honda fairing mounted to the frame was just too heavy and I like to see the headlight move when I move the bars. Maybe on another bike. How about an old School Harley Windshield and custom made riding light/mounting bracket with signals under like HD style. Bracket mounted to the brake crossover mount and Headlight bolts then windshield mounted to bracket.

 I’m working on a HD batwing fairing & shield for the colder mornings. Four bolts will change it out. Tail lights – the turn signals in the bag bottoms will now be RED lense riding & Brake lamps and turn signals will be amber on the bag rails.

Since there was no emblem on the “tank”, I added the bird to the tank in front of the striping. I am amazed at how many people DO NOT KNOW  what type of bike it is till they ask. The Goldwing logo is still on the side covers but that means nothing to them. 

Note: 5/5/11 - The black side covers and tank will now be the new colors for "Aspy" - my 83 aspencade. Fairing is mountable and will soon be painted to match Retreads new "look". What the heck, if I don't need it, it's only a few bolts and the windshield is back on.

Batwing fairing was just a shell so I had to create a complete mount from scratch. Found it needed extra support so added bars from the top bolts of the forks and posts from the handlebars - VERY SOLID now.......... Rock steady at 80 mph. Traffic cruising speed to work averages 65 - 80++ ... I TRY to hold it down  to 70 max. Mind you, this is at 5:30 AM !! They are all headed to NYC. I turn off half way, THANK GOD !!

       Retread's new "colors"

With new colors - will paint the batwing next time I swap the windshield.

Next is removal of the bags and install of a solo seat...... need to get "Aspy" running first.  




This Site Last Modified on
5 May  2011

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