1980 gs850g ?

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by elementalg20, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

    Sep 27, 2008
    Melcher, Iowa
    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)
  2. zap2504

    zap2504 Dave E.

    Feb 15, 2006
    Middletown, PA
    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.
  3. Tripletreat

    Tripletreat Been here awhile

    Dec 20, 2008
    Boise, Idaho
    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.
  4. bmwhacker

    bmwhacker Still on 3 wheels

    May 6, 2009
    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.


  5. baloneyskin daddy

    baloneyskin daddy bikaholic

    Oct 21, 2009
    southcentral PA.
    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.
  6. dbarale

    dbarale Squiddly slow

    Oct 20, 2008
    Western NC
    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.