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The author is wrong though, completely wrong about why it was discontinued.



The tariff only applied to motorcycles of 700cc's or more (ever wonder why there are so many bikes that are 698cc's? The GL650 was exempt and would not be subject to the import duty.



Honda introduced 4 bikes between 694cc and 698cc to avoid the tariff.



Harley only made "heavy" bikes, so there was no way to justify the tariff on lower cc bikes if they didn't make any. The tariff did get Kawasaki and Honda to ramp up their US manufacturing. Harley had a bit of a point, since Harley's were taxed at 100% in Japan at the time IIRC, and Japanese bikes paid less than 2% in the US.



Just another Reagan hater grasping at straws, if it wasn't virtual it would have made better TP than reading fodder.
 

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Everything I've heard, even from back in the day, is that the phenomenal popularity of the Goldwing killed the Silverwing.



Most folks who were considering a touring bike opted for the Goldwing, and this cut into the Silverwing sales to the point that Honda decided to drop them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
"The tariff only applied to motorcycles of 700cc's or more (ever wonder why there are so many bikes that are 698cc's? The GL650 was exempt and would not be subject to the import duty."



You're right about the 650 not being subjected to the Harley Law. That point was clearly made in the letters and admitted by the author.



As a Canadian I'm neither pro nor anti Reagan. That is excepting for the general rule that I believe all politicians are the enemy of the ordinary people.



So, leaving Reagan and Harley aside, how did you like the rest of the article?
 

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Everything I've heard, even from back in the day, is that the phenomenal popularity of the Goldwing killed the Silverwing.



Most folks who were considering a touring bike opted for the Goldwing, and this cut into the Silverwing sales to the point that Honda decided to drop them.
That makes the most sense. I'd argue that in the used bike market the Silverwing still has more competition with old Goldwings than anything else.
 

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From the third sentence ... transverse “twisted” SOHC 80 degree V-twin



Last time I peeked under the valve cover, I noticed pushrods in my engine.





Greg
 

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The author didnt imply anything of Honda's other engine, a 4 cyl "V" water cooled engine that was introduced about that time...on the magna and sabre.

The cx motor was designed and introduced in the late 70's, and many motorcycle engine advances were introduced each year from then that made a pushrod engine seem obsolete. Honda's advancements in that +50 horsepower market limited the desire of cx/gl's to the magna / sabre / goldwing... this was probably more of Honda's marketing push instead of Reagan's involvement.
 

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i didn't read artical.but,everyone is right about the 700 cc tariff.

the gl650I new IIORC was around 4200.00 dollars and you coud get a gold wing for around 4500.00 dollars.

if you were taking out a loan,which one would you opt for?

honda made it hard to buy the gl650I with their pricing.
 

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What a complete piece of fiction that article is. As was already pointed out, Reagan (the great) era motorcycle tariff didn't apply to the GL650 as it didn't meet the over 700 cc criteria.



The article also stated, "...which was a better-engineered, better-built and more potent loose copy of Moto Guzzi’s engine of similar layout." Moto Guzzi never built a 650 but they did make a 700 and a 500. I can personally attest to the performance of Guzzi's as I currently own a '70 Guzzi V50 and years ago, I owned a Guzzi V700.



Comparing my '82 Honda CX500 Custom to my '79 Guzzi V50 is fair match. They are similar size and engine displacement and both bikes are in outstanding original condition. My Guzzi has somewhat high mileage (92,000) but was meticulously maintained thus motor is tight. The riding position of both bikes is similar and I wouldn't say one is better than the other -- that would be personal preference. But my Guzzi V50 is obviously faster at acceleration and cornering. Brakes on the Guzzi are slightly better. The Guzzi feels like it weighs a lot less than my CX500 but I don't know the actual weights. Gas mileage of both bikes is about exactly the same.



I'm not an evangelist on V50's but I abhor BS and dislike urban legend and don't care for propaganda. All of on this forum love our CX500's me included but they are what they are. They have strong points and weak points.
 

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The Guzzi probably wins for touring, but loses everywhere else.



General information

Model: Moto Guzzi V 50

Year: 1979

Category: Classic

Rating: 69.5 out of 100. Show full rating and compare with other bikes

Engine and transmission

Displacement: 490.00 ccm (29.90 cubic inches)

Engine type: V2, four-stroke

Power: 39.00 HP (28.5 kW)) @ 7400 RPM

Top speed: 168.0 km/h (104.4 mph)

Compression: 10.8:1

Bore x stroke: 74.0 x 57.0 mm (2.9 x 2.2 inches)

Valves per cylinder: 2

Fuel control: OHV

Cooling system: Air

Gearbox: 5-speed

Transmission type,

final drive: Shaft drive (cardan)

Chassis, suspension, brakes and wheels

Front tyre dimensions: 3.25-18

Rear tyre dimensions: 3.50-18

Front brakes: Dual disc

Rear brakes: Single disc

Physical measures and capacities

Weight incl. oil, gas, etc: 183.0 kg (403.4 pounds)

Fuel capacity: 16.00 litres (4.23 gallons)
 

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Yes, and the comments about the cams running direct in the alloy of the heads... aside from not being there in the first place they have BEARINGS.
Unless there's a sleeve that I don't remember seeing, the camshaft runs in a journal machined into the block.





R
 

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Looking at the manual I'd say you are correct Randall, but I'm pretty sure my particular bike is fitted with bearings [I had to replace a broken cam when I first bought this one].



I would have to assume my bike has had some remedial action in this area at some time in it's life.
 

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1978 CX500 "The Grub", 1983 GL650I "Nimbus"
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I just looked at a stripped block sitting in my basement. There is no hardened sleeve, just the machined journal with three oil ports opening into it. The camshaft rides on this and on the front oil seal. I don't think there a journal in the tach drive cover, just the oil seal.





R
 

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I am sadly lacking in historical knowledge to make much of a judgment regarding the articles accuracy, but it seems a shame never the less that this bike was crafted for such a short time. Were the powers that be ever to resurrect this engineering, a revival of masterworks would claim a big place in the motorcycle industry books......IMHO.
 

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.....

The article also stated, "...which was a better-engineered, better-built and more potent loose copy of Moto Guzzi’s engine of similar layout." Moto Guzzi never built a 650 but they did make a 700 and a 500.

.....


Moto Guzzi did make a 650; the V65. A very nice bike that did not sell well, mostly due to availability problems I think.



About the cam bearings: in good Honda tradition there are none, the cam runs in plain aluminium. At the rear in the block itself, at the front in the tachodrive cap. Steel/aluminium makes a very good bearing combination, as long as there is ample oil supply. However when the surface eventually gets worn out or scored you have a problem.



Michael
 

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Based on the 2nd part of the article having so much fiction I am not sure if I can trust the first part but if it is true I rely enjoyed the little history lesson in divergences and upgrades the 650 had. Now I know that it is not just a bored stroked 500(which I always assumed) I now know the carbs are bigger and the tranny has different ratios. I found it enjoyable to read. Thanks for posting it.
 

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It`s a bit short-sighted of the author saying that the GL650 models were discontinued because of any USA import issues (which may, or may not be relavant).

What about the other models - the 650 Eurosport version, and GL`s sold here,too?

They were sold all over Europe, Australia, S.A. etc..

I don`t think Honda would of discontinued the whole model range wordwide after one year based on a loss of sales in one area.

Or maybe they would - we`re constantly reminded here of `the American market`, music bands `breaking America`, etc...
 

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It's obvious it takes longer to read that drivel than the time the author spent researching it. There is 100X more useful info in the comments about that piece than the actual piece.



His conclusion about the tariff which didn't apply to the GL650 being responsible for it's demise is akin to saying that no smoking in bars led to a reduction in breast feeding. When replying to this kind of info on the net or bulletin boards, it's always good to quote the original in replys, the author has already made a half dozen changes to the article in the comments started coming in (from this board I suspect.)



Thanks for posting doralh, alwasy fun to set these bozos straight and get some of the garbage on the net corrected.
 

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I am sadly lacking in historical knowledge to make much of a judgment regarding the articles accuracy, but it seems a shame never the less that this bike was crafted for such a short time. Were the powers that be ever to resurrect this engineering, a revival of masterworks would claim a big place in the motorcycle industry books......IMHO.


Unfortunately,,I don't think the 650 would sell very well today,,other than to people like us who appreciate them. bikes of similar displacement are made as scooters now for getting around town.



Everyone wants big bikes now,,see the thread "No replacement for displacement".

a 750 is now considered unsuitable for highway use, you might even say that about a 1000. (I wouldn't,,but there are lots who would
)
 
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