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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
…but at least were here to tell the story. In retrospect it make perfect sense but you have to hear the story in chronological order. We just did our 12K maintenance. As I rode off from the dealer (the wife was at work) everything was “good to go”. I put about 40 miles on the new tires (a pair of E3s, thanks for the advice; might try the Bridgestones later). I’m happy to say that the entire bill to include an air filter change, all fluids, etc. was less than $1K.

I went to go pick up my wife at work and on the way home it happened. As I applied the brakes (be it front only, or rear only, or both) there was kind of a dragging sound, kind of like when your pads are used up…but of course this is right after a tune up!

Then I felt that the braking is not as good as it could be. I called the shop and said that all is not well. They said bring it in since their Goldwing “expert” was going to be on vacation soon. Since I just picked it up the same day, I dropped my wife off and rode back to the dealer. Before I left my garage I was applying the front brake and rear brake and rocking the bike back and forth in the garage and at one point I squeezed the front brake and almost could get the lever to the handgrip! So off I rode (awe what the heck, I have a Goldwing Airbag, I’m ATGATT and enough of a life insurance policy to keep everyone happy).

As I rode back I thought that I had “enough” braking so as not to use my boot heels, a bailout maneuver, or to see if they reconnected the airbag after the air filter change (or so they say the replaced the air filter).

So I made it back to the dealer, and they we all saw it at the same time…THE FRONT LEFT BRAKE CALIPER WAS JUST HANGING THERE BY THE HOSES!!!:eek:4:

I let the wrench on it for a few minutes (I’m sure I had their full attention at 1700 hours on a Saturday afternoon) and then I rode home. There were no further problems.

I really want to like this dealer. We have been through a lot together…both good and bad. I won’t tell you where I’m at (some of you are smart enough to figure it out while others of you know me from a different life or have figured out where I’m at from my IP address or through other means) .

I’m buying all my own supplies from this dealer (the same ones who sold me a 2008 Airbag for $20K in June 2010). I don’t plan to bring it back for any maintenance until the new E3s are ready to replace, but until then I will buy the oil from them so I have a chain of receipts.

Why so meticulous you may ask? I have an extended warranty. I’m not afraid of a wrench. I used to wrench on my old Voyager XII (have your ever head of one of those?). I will admit that I’m a little intimidated by the Goldwing in comparison (how many places do you have to bleed that linked anti-lock braking system again?).

Maybe next time I will try to do everything myself. I found the dealer repair manual for the GL 1800 somewhere when I was surfing the net. I don’t want to invalidate the warranty and we have been through so much with these guys (both good and bad). So I think my choices are either to remain faithful to this dealer, or to go to the brand new dealer in town (I won’t say who other than the name is synonymous with a famous NASCAR name) or do it myself…your opinion?
 

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…your opinion?
From now on, you will be receiving the absolute BEST service that dealership ever gave ANYONE. Why? Because you have the bike they really, really screwed up on. They don't want to do that again, EVER :nojoke:
 

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I'm not sure what you want an opinion on ? Your dealer, doing your own wrenching, or your failure to see the caliper hanging...:shrug:
 

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From now on, you will be receiving the absolute BEST service that dealership ever gave ANYONE. Why? Because you have the bike they really, really screwed up on. They don't want to do that again, EVER :nojoke:
:agree: I'v worked in shops for meny years. The service writers will work very hard to keep you happy.
 

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Forgive me but I have learned to Inspect what I Expect.

Shame on the dealer for leaving the bike like that but try to remember your wife is putting her life in your hands. It's your responsibility to make sure the machine is as good to go as you can. This is something that really should have been picked up on before you left the dealer and even if you did not see it, the very first time you used your brakes (which should have been in their parking lot) you should have known something was wrong and wheeled it right back into the shop.

The dealer doesn't touch certain things on my bikes for this very reason. I will not let them adjust the air pressure or mess with my air filter to Nam a couple.

Perhaps this will serve as a good reminder to TCLOK your bike before every ride.

Tires
Controls
Lights
Oil
Kickstand

No, the blame for the poor repair is not your fault, but I would have a very hard time dealing with my wife getting hurt or worse because I did not do something as simple as looking the bike over before a ride. Think of it as a pre flight check.

Lessons learned, chalk it up as a senior moment if you will.


Btw --- yur screen name, that thurr one dem super motard references?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
T

Ironically when I left the dealer it would have passed the TCLOCK (since checking the bolts on the calipers is not one of the inspection points). I'm as big a fan of TCLOCK as I am of ATGATT. As a Green Knight (Google it) I'm all for safety.

The caliper was not hanging when I left the dealer. It happened about 40 miles into the day. I looked everything over prety well; I was specifically interested in the look of the new Dunlop E3s so I would have noticed it before I left the dealer the first time today. If I ever let someone work on the brakes again I will look specifically at the caliper bolts before I leave. I actually noticed the problem a split second before the "experts" did after my 40 mile test ride. Since it was the left caliper and I dismount from the left and decided to go down to look at the brakes to see what I could see; they were standing to the right of the bike when I pulled in so "walla", self diagnosis. Please remember I only had one hour to get the bike in on a Saturday afternoon to get re-looked at before the end of the day; after which the real Goldwing God (or so they say) was going to go on leave for a couple weeks.

I guess I'm a little too picky about someone working on my machines. I remember one time back in the early 90s letting Wal Mart do the awesomely difficult task of balancing and rotating my tires (I lived in military housing at the time and we could not work on cars in our car ports and there were endless hours of classes at the auto hobby shop to get "qualified"). As I rode off I remember the wheels shaking and making a terrible noise. I had my four kids with me at the time and was about to hit freeway speeds. What happend was one person was supposed to finger tighten the lug nut and another was supposed to hit it with an air wrench...great teamwork! That Wal Mart couldn't apologize more and offered my next lube, oil and filter for free (I said "no thanks").

Screen name is an 8 letter abbreviation of my first and last name that was given to me back in the 90s when computers were new; sorry there is not much more story to it than that.

Am I expecting too much from mechanics?
 

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That's why they say that the most dangerous ride in an airplane or ride on a motorcycle is the first one out of the repair shop.

Bet you will now look the bike over real careful before you ride off.

If working on the GW intimidates you, buy the service manual. It is very well written. Even if you decide not to do your own work, it will help you understand what the dealer is doing and what he is charging you for.
 

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The LH caliper secondary master cylinder bolt, if left finger tight, is hard if not impossible to spot as the head is recessed into the bracket arm. It will slowly back out and cause you to lose the LH caliper.

:oops: I know this from personal experience. I am normally very careful, (fanatical), and just got caught out this one time. Fortunately no injury or damage was sustained, just personal pride.

Trev.
 

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who is perfect?

If you were happy with this dealer before, stick with them. No one is perfect so check the work over after you pick up bike and dont take a passenger on first ride..

 

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We have the service contract offered by our dealer, 12K maintenance $0.00. Actually that's what we pay for any and all service calls. We do pay for things like batteries, tires and install of add ons.
SO tracked her "02" from purchase to trade and figured she saved quite a bit by using the contract. Must have worked, she got another with the "07".

Something to look into at your dealer.
 

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Years ago because of my work schedule I had to let the shop do the work on my bikes. I had a rear tire replaced with out putting the keeper in the axle nut. At another shop they put the front axle spacers in backwards which almost threw me over a cliff. Twice I had tires mounted backwards. On my cars three different times I have had wheels come off while driving. Twice it was after they did the state inspection. I do my own work now but I still have the tires on my truck changed at the shop. I come straight home and get out my torque wrench. I just had a tire mounted at HDL and did not change the valve as I only change them every other tire. The next morning before I left I checked the pressure and it had 15lbs. The valve was leaking from the back side. Took it back with a new valve to install. That was my mistake and it could of bit me if I hadn't checked the pressure. I never trust new tires to hold air. One way to improve the quality of mechanics is to keep the customers and the telephone away from them. Too many distractions.
 

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I'm not sure I get this. The dealer failed to properly secure a brake caliper, putting your life at risk. Fortunately you made it safely back to the dealer, they fixed this, and you are still willing to let them touch your bike again? :?

I will never use my local dealer for anything after they screwed up some brake wiring (replaced the saddlebag lights) leaving my wife's GW with no rear end lights. Didn't occur until 6 days later when we were several states away riding in the rain.

That was not their only mistake and they did not get a second chance.

It's your life.
 

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When the caliper came off, 40 miles into the ride, didn't it make a tremendous sound, a clunk, a loud thump, something???

The calipers don't just slip off easily. As Fred H says on the videos, they have to be caressed back into place on the rotor when reinstalling. They wouldn't just fall off silently and you not felt it or heard it.

If you're like me, I can feel or hear something wrong immediately.

Did you miss it? Were you playing music loud? Just wondering. :shrug:
 

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left side
no complete loss of breaking
no noise

hummmm...
maybe it was the secondary master cylinder and not the caliper?

Dennis
 

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From now on, you will be receiving the absolute BEST service that dealership ever gave ANYONE. Why? Because you have the bike they really, really screwed up on. They don't want to do that again, EVER :nojoke:
I call Shinenegans! At the dealer I went to, it got worse and worse and worse. I think they saw it this way: We screwed it up so bad, there is no hope of recovering a relationship. They even had a designated service writer to deal with 'problem customers' from their worst screwups ...
 

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Mechanics are humans and humans make mistakes. They have lots of distractions and time pressure. If they make a mistake, they are tempted to cover it up to stay out of trouble with their boss. Dealers do not pay their mechanics enough, so turnover is a problem.

I do all of my own wrenching that I can handle. I carefully inspect all the work I hire out.

In this case, one person forgot to torque a couple of bolts. Easy enough for any mechanic to do. It could have cost someone their life. The guy that did it knows that, and he learned a valuable lesson. I bet he will be more careful from now on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Timjoebob - Yes I heard the clunk when the caliper dropped. I thought that it was something in the triple tree area (such is a WAG while riding). Unfortunately it happened when I was braking to turn onto an expressway (a causeway actually) where you can't stop since there is no shoulder.

Wingwing - I'm not certain what would cause the dragging sound only experienced when braking? It was kind of similar to the sound your hear when wheel bearings go out or when the brake pads have been used up. i'm guessing that the caliper was hanging by one bolt for a little bit and uneven pressure was happening when I braked; what are your thoughts? BTW, I know exactly what bad wheel bearing sound like since one time I took a car in for something else not even wheel related and when I drove off all of a sudden I have bad wheel bearings. I had a friend who could use the auto hobby shop help me pull and replace those bearings...so yes it is another professional mechanic story that I'm not happy with.

As a recap I had decent braking for the first 40 miles, than heard a clunk (maybe the first bolt coming off and the caliper shifting) than a dragging sound when I braked, then less braking power but the sound was gone when braking. I thought I should attribute the loss of braking power to bubbles in the fluid and I was taking it back in a hurry to let them bleed the system (this is the first bike we have owned with linked brakes). It is possible that the caliper finally dropped in my own garage as soon as I got my wife home but I was in a hurry to get back to the dealer to catch their expert. The hanging caliper was a complete surprise but I think it all makes sense now!

The second ride home was very smooth and with great feeling in the brakes. As an aside I usually use only the front brake lever, even on other bikes with simple and separate brakes (I hear that Goldwing riders often wear out their rear pads first but I was replacing front pads on our old Voyager about 2-3 times more often than rear pads).

What give me chills is what could have happened if the caliper got caught on the wheel (instant stoppie) or if it fell off (hitting the rear wheel and then having no pressure in the brake lines). I let myself get hurried so as to catch their Goldwing expert in his last hour of work for the next couple weeks (and we have bike events, to include leaving the state over the next couple weekends).

I have at least 12K miles before I have to make a decision as to who to take the bike to next time or to do it myself. I'm just happy that there is a brand new Honda dealer in town so I have a choice. I will buy the oil from the dealer in the meantime so as to have a chain of receipts to prove maintenance (otherwise I would consider a different oil...Rotella comes to mind).

Today I will look the bike over very carefully and see what else I can find. I wish mechanics would take their time, especially when working on sensitive parts of the bike such as wheels and brakes. Thanks for your inputs.
 
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