Starting a GL 1000 engine after a long period of rest!


Courtesy of Randall Washington (aka "Randakk") - owner of Randakk's Cycle Shakk



  • Verify that the crankshaft will turn with the kickstarter...don't use the starter yet! (just make sure the engine will turn a bit).
  • Remove dirt and debris from spark plug recesses with compressed air.
  • Soak the area around the spark plugs with penetrating oil ((like PB Blaster) and leave overnight.
  • Remove spark plugs (very carefully!).
  • Squirt about 2 tablespoons of penetrating oil into each cylinder... (this will help free up your rings and lube the cylinder walls).
  • Replace plugs.
  • Check fuses, main fuse, battery cables, starter cable and wiring to/from starter relay for integrity.
  • Install fresh, fully charged battery.
  • Address coolant status. Drain and re-fill as necessary for initial startup
  • With kill switch "off," spin the engine on the starter (or kickstarter) for a few seconds...this will distribute the oil in each cylinder.
  • Let the bike sit overnight.
  • Drain the old oil.
  • Replace oil filter and replace oil with the cheapest 30W you can buy.
  • Clean / replace air filter.
  • Rectify ALL problems with fuel tank. There should be no rust whatsoever in tank!
  • Install new fuel filter.
  • Do whatever carb, ignition work, etc. is required to start the engine and verify that it will run correctly. Now would be a good time to try the "In Situ" carb cleaning method (follow the link).
  • Start the engine, allow the engine to warm up, but DO NOT RIDE!
  • While the engine is warm, drain the oil.
  • Replace oil filter (again).
  • Fill crankcase with a 50/50 mix of cheap 30W and Dextron auto transmission fluid.
  • Start engine and run for 20 minutes at 3500 - 4000 rpms on the center stand...DO NOT RIDE with this mixture in crankcase...any loading might damage your engine. This will clean your engine internals and free-up rings. Don't be alarmed...your engine may SMOKE quite a bit with this mixture!
  • While the engine is warm, drain this oil mixture.
  • Replace oil filter (again).
  • Refill crankcase with high quality, motorcycle-spec 10W-40 oil.
  • Address roadworthiness issues like coolant, fork oil, etc.
  • Address safety issues: brakes, tires, lights, etc.
  • Road test and evaluate deficiencies. Obviously, do this first ride with GREAT CARE for your own personal safety.
  • Address deficiencies as required.
  • Adjust valves.
  • Re-visit tune-up issues as required for smooth running and full power.
  • Do a benchmark compression test.
  • After you put 100+ miles on the bike, do another compression test (the values often rise as the rings free-up).
  • Change out fluids again at 100 mile mark.

Courtesy of Randakk's Cycle Shakk who made this tips possible for this website, thank you, Randakk