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I just finished my south america journey on a suzuki gs500f. I got a gl500 1982 at home and now im thinkin on a worldwide journey back again until Brazil then europe, asia and hope i can do australia. Im really thinking about preparing the 1982 gl500 with i dont know hoy many miles in the motor (i bought it used) what parts should i check on th bike engine to make it reliable? Cam tensioners.? Pistons? Drive shaft? What do you rcommended to make before this 50 k miles trip. Thanks and sorry for my english im from central america:) btw the only problem i have ever had with te bike was the electrical startin gear (bendix i think)
 

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Welcome to the forum. Please take a few minutes to add your bike's year and model to your signature.

It sounds like you have quite a trip planned! A journey of such magnitude deserves significant preventive maintenance. You're no doubt familiar with common motorcycle maintenance items (control cables, brakes, wheel bearings, tires, etc.), but my suggestions for things somewhat unique to these bikes follow.

The standard routine maintenance procedures found in the factory service manual should be performed.

If the engine sounds good with no knocking, doesn't consume oil, and has good compression then I'd avoid doing anything with the motor bottom-end (pistons, rings, crankshaft, etc.) But I would do the triple-bypass (cam chain, stator, mechanical seal) as a preventive measure. Replace the starter clutch springs while the engine is apart. Check the oil pump chain and replace if necessary.

Consider an electric fan conversion, but as a minimum replace the fan. For justification, see here. I have heard, but cannot personally confirm, that Honda has recently changed the fan to address the cracks that frequently happened even on relatively new ones.

Perform the main fuse modification.

The driveshaft and its u-joint should be fine. I've never known them to fail.

The rear final drives do fail on occasion, though. Make sure yours does not make any strange sounds, especially a ticking or growling noise. Clean and lube the splines with Honda Moly 60 paste. I keep a known good spare unit in a box at home. In the event of a failure it can be shipped to me.

Disassemble and lubricate the Pro-link suspension.

Take some time to go through the Wiki. Just about everything that can be expected to fail on these bikes has at some point, and the corrective/preventive measures are described there.

Others will likely pile on once this thread gets going.

I've moved this thread to the General Discussion section.
 

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Pretty much what DaveF said.

What you´re planning would be a serious challenge for any bike. 50 K mls is pretty much for the average motorcycle during its whole life. And you´re starting with a 33 year old bike! I don´t say that a GL 500 is a bad choice, but it has to be really sound to be able to make it at all. 50 K mls in one more or less continous journey is something quite different from the same distance spread out during maybe 30 years. Easier on the bike in many ways (always warm and cosy) but also a massive beating for just a limited time.

If your bike has automatic cam chain tensioner (European GL:s all do, but Us ones don´t), I would strongly recommend somehow getting as many tensioner components as possible - they´re AFAIK all NLA from Honda and will probably not be easier to find in the future. Then do the triple bypass + fan mod + oil pump chain. With an already sound motor you should be able to take a chance, supposing you´ll be religious about oil and filter changes + valve adjustment (+ cam chain tensioner adjustments, if you have a manual one).

A well taken care of CX / GL has a good chance to reach 150 K mls or more. Try to find out as much as you can about your bike´s history?

/Sture

And yes - were it me I would certainly pack a checked and good condition final drive on the bike (or at least have one ready to be shipped, left at home). I´ve had two final drive failures (one bearing, one oil seal) during my years as CX /GL owner. Altogether I´ve done something like twice the length of your planned trip). Final drive failures don´t tell beforehand...
 
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