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Old 10-11-2012, 09:25 AM   #1
elementalg20 OP
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Melcher, Iowa
Oddometer: 774
1980 gs850g ?

I've found what looks like a clean project, what concerns me most is the owner says it uses a little oil, not sure on what his definition of a "a little" might be.

It also needs a cam chain tensioner(owner says chain needs tightened up). I'm assuming it needs a tensioner, and possibly a new chain, how are is that on these bikes?

Bike has 40k miles on it and looks clean and stock, does have a burned out baffle as well, "good" front and rear tires for the asking price of $900.

I've been considering something more like an ST1100 but I've developed some more wants and know I won't really use the bike a ton as I don't have time for alot of trips(if any). I'd like something good for 2up afternoon rides, commuting and just farting around. Maybe once or twice a year go on a ride with my father in law on his 81ish goldwing.

This is the bike in question, I apologize if I'm not supposed to link to CL....

http://desmoines.craigslist.org/mcy/3315306433.html (I'm not selling this or advertising intentionally, only considering buying it myself)
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Old 10-11-2012, 12:07 PM   #2
zap2504
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Joined: Feb 2006
Location: Middletown, PA
Oddometer: 528
The definitive resource site is http://www.thegsresources.com/
I believe the frames from both the 850G and 1000G are the same (the cruiserish L or chain-drive1000E models IDK); I prefer the G model (shaft drive) in this weight category; looks like exhausts from the earlier GS750s fit the 850

Heavy, stable bike; looked at one this past Spring but decided it needed more work than the purchase price warranted. For $900 I would want a lot more road-worthyness.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:37 PM   #3
Tripletreat
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Joined: Dec 2008
Location: Boise, Idaho
Oddometer: 487
I don't know. That looks like a pretty good project to me. It runs well enough for the owner to be willing to let prospects ride it. That's gotta be a good sign. A runner for under a grand! The bike looks clean and well cared for.
I've never owned a Suzuki, but I've heard that Suzuki has a record of not providing much support for its older bikes. Do check out the availability of parts before you jump into this. That could be the deal breaker for me.
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Old 10-14-2012, 05:26 PM   #4
bmwhacker
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Joined: May 2009
Location: MONTANA NATIVE from NATIVE MONTANA
Oddometer: 4,000
I just looked at this 79 GS850G this afternoon. It's not near as clean as the 80 model you're looking at.
Guy wants $350.00 for it. Fairly new looking Dunlop tires and a newer battery. Appears to be pretty much unmolested. Electric starter doesn't work. Not even a peep out of it. Maybe a relay? Over all it doesn't look too bad for $350.00. Needs a good clean up and has 17k miles.

Carbs need attention. Float(s?) sticking and it dumped some gas out when I turned the fuel on.

I'm gonna sleep on it but think I'll probably take it. Since I can't hear it run I think I'll check the compression prior to any $$$$ changing hands.




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bmwhacker screwed with this post 10-14-2012 at 05:37 PM
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Old 10-14-2012, 05:56 PM   #5
baloneyskin daddy
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Joined: Oct 2009
Location: southcentral PA.
Oddometer: 1,866
They're bulletproof and run forever but will use a little oil. Cam chain tensioners were automatic but some misinformed mechanics were known to lock them in one position with the scew and locknut used for assembly purposes. One problem I had with the 650's and 850 shaftys was they were geared to short and were really humming at highway speeds.
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:02 AM   #6
dbarale
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Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Western NC
Oddometer: 1,029
Quote:
Originally Posted by baloneyskin daddy View Post
They're bulletproof and run forever but will use a little oil. Cam chain tensioners were automatic but some misinformed mechanics were known to lock them in one position with the scew and locknut used for assembly purposes. One problem I had with the 650's and 850 shaftys was they were geared to short and were really humming at highway speeds.
These engines are tough but, yes, they use oil. I had two, a '79 and an '81. Both used about 1 qt between oil changes. They ran fine though and one of them reached 100,000 km without problems.

The cam chaim was making a lot of noise so I replaced it, still made a lot of noise...

These heavy bikes are sensitive about tires, lots of weight and not a lot of rubber. Make sure you don't go too cheap on those.

As with all 80's bikes, make sure the forks, shocks, head bearings, and swingarm bearings are in good shape. Makes a huge difference in handling.

Mine had a fork brace and steel brake lines, I highly recommend them. Also make sure to replace the brake pads with newer ones with a better compound, even if they still look OK.
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