Honda Silver Wing Scooter Forum

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tinman
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exavid
"Hi Yo"
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SteveSilverWing
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
SteveSilverWing

Number of posts : 133
Age : 66
Location : Los Angeles, California
Points : 2524
Registration date : 2015-04-17

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PostSubject: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 9:34 pm

Hi all,

This might seem like a small issue, but here's my Swing wash-up story.

First of all, I have yet to receive a bike cover that I bought at Amazon.com. I won't be getting it until later this month. Ugh!

I live in Los Angeles -- in the San Fernando Valley. It is common for most people, if not all, to have a gardener come by once a week and tend to plants and such. In addition to this, they use one of the most detestable tools: the Leaf Blower! These things make a lot of noise and mostly blow leaves around and around...just blow it over onto the street and hope it doesn't come back your way.

Well, today was the first day the gardeners visited my building since I got my new Swing. It's not the fault of the gardener, but those things also blow a helluva' lot of dust...and all over my new bike, too!! I'll soon have the cover so it won't be too much of a problem then.

Until then, I'd like to wash the bike and wonder what is the best way to do it. I'd like to take it to a self-use car wash. You know, the kind where you put in quarters and high-pressure soap,water cleans away any dust and dirt. Is this a good idea? Will it mess things up certain delicate parts (i.e. wiring, etc.) or do you think it's okay? If you think I'm crazy to even consider such a thing, just let me know. Wink

I'm ready to get out the garden hose and a bucket of mild soapy water if the car wash thing is a bad idea.

Thanks guys!

Steve
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CathyN
Silver Wing Expert
Silver Wing Expert


Number of posts : 771
Location : USA
Points : 4890
Registration date : 2010-11-15

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 10:25 pm

Steve, I don't think taking it to a high pressure car wash is a good idea. Or even using a a garden hose and soapy water. It's bad enough when you get caught in a down pour. You don't want to get the water into small areas where you have sensitive wires and fuses and such. That's just my opinion.

My husband and I use Honda spray cleaner. It works great. Gets the grime and bugs off. Just use a soft cloth or soft paper towel. cleans it up nice.

Don't use it on your seat or foot boards. Just water and a little soap. The spray can make the seat and foot boards slippery.

Cathy
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SteveSilverWing
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
SteveSilverWing

Number of posts : 133
Age : 66
Location : Los Angeles, California
Points : 2524
Registration date : 2015-04-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 10:38 pm

Thanks, Cathy, for setting me straight on bike washing...LOLOL Embarassed I'm embarrassed for even asking, but I didn't want to do anything stupid.

Steve
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CathyN
Silver Wing Expert
Silver Wing Expert


Number of posts : 771
Location : USA
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Registration date : 2010-11-15

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 11:25 pm

No problem. This is what this forum is all about. No need to feel embarrassed. We are all here to help one another out when we can.

swing
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"Hi Yo"
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru
Bike Wash Time 510-80

Number of posts : 2944
Age : 72
Location : Winnsboro, Texas, U.S.A.
Points : 7414
Registration date : 2010-02-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 11:29 pm

Steve, that is not a stupid question. Honda only devoted about eight pages in the owner's manual to tell us the proper way to clean the scooter. So maybe it wasn't silly to ask. It encouraged me to go back and read those pages again. What worked well for cars isn't really best for scooters. Thank you.   applause Oh, and listen to Cathy, she is a downpour expert. Laughing
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CathyN
Silver Wing Expert
Silver Wing Expert


Number of posts : 771
Location : USA
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Registration date : 2010-11-15

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeMon May 04, 2015 11:52 pm

Hi Yo wrote:
Steve, that is not a stupid question. Honda only devoted about eight pages in the owner's manual to tell us the proper way to clean the scooter. So maybe it wasn't silly to ask. It encouraged me to go back and read those pages again. What worked well for cars isn't really best for scooters. Thank you.   applause   Oh, and listen to Cathy, she is a downpour expert.    Laughing

Steve , "Hi-Yo" is so right especially the crack about me being a "downpour expert". :lol!:
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exavid
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru


Number of posts : 2658
Age : 78
Location : Medford, Oregon
Points : 7246
Registration date : 2009-07-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 12:19 am

I've been cleaning my bikes including my previous Goldwings with the garden hose and gently wiping with a wash mitt while the water's on the area. That will prevent fine scratches. Don't wipe while dry which can put fine marks in the paint. Once wiped down with a chamois to remove the water spots a quick shot of Lemon Pledge and a buff with a dry terry cloth towel makes my bikes shine. There are other, more expensive things to use like a detail spray but either one will make the plastic look great. If you have any black areas that are a bit scuffed or not looking nice and black, a coat of Mother's Back to Black does a nice job. One of my friends bought a SW with a step through cover that looked almost gray. A couple of Back to Black coats hand buffed made it look like new. If the bike is dirty around the rear drive and wheel a spritz of engine cleaner makes it easy to wash off the gunk.
All in all plastic faired bikes are a lot easier to clean than something like a Harley where you have to scrub out all the bugs fried in the cooling fins. BTW way the easiest way to get rid of bugs is to wet the area down and leave it for five minutes or so. I often lay wet paper towels over the windshield for a few minutes then simply wipe the bugs of with a wet paper towel. No scratches in the windshield that way. Scrubbing bugs off unless they've been soaked can cause scratches so wet 'em down.
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NWSSC
Silver Wing Rider
Silver Wing Rider
NWSSC

Number of posts : 418
Age : 83
Location : Mt Prospect IL 30 miles west of Chicago
Points : 4697
Registration date : 2010-03-03

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PostSubject: Wash time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 12:32 am

Hello and welcome to the site. Most any mild soap you use on your car is ok for the Silverwing.Stay away from using high pressure  water near the front wheel bearings. I use Simple Green to remove the brake dust and crud on the wheels. After rinsing I use my leaf blower to dry everything off. If you have access to a air compressor it is a good idea to dry off the brake rotors and calipers. I use a product called All Kleer by the Black Lab Corp. on the windshield.   Howard
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dspevack
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru
dspevack

Number of posts : 2008
Age : 56
Location : Miami, FL
Points : 7059
Registration date : 2008-12-27

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 12:49 am

One of the biggest problems with a high pressure wash is you can end up pushing the bike over with water pressure!

It hasn't been said here (probably because its obvious) but I'll state it anyway:
Put your bike on the center stand when you wash.

Dan
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Meldrew
Visiting Curmudgeon
Meldrew

Number of posts : 3793
Location : York, North Yorkshire, England UK
Points : 7855
Registration date : 2010-11-16

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 1:45 am

Where else would your Silver Wing be except on the main stand to wash and clean it? If it's on the side stand you can't turn either wheel completely to to treat it a spray of Muc Off before you start washing the scooter. Then you need to rotate the wheels to clean off any road crud and brake dust that may have accumulated, then rinse the wheel. Obviously the front wheel takes a bit more effort to lift up and gradually rotate through 360° than the rear, but if you're using the side stand you can't rotate either.
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DanB
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
DanB

Number of posts : 174
Age : 71
Location : Troup, Tx
Points : 3151
Registration date : 2013-09-02

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 6:53 am

I've always used Dawn dish washing soap and water on all my Maxiscooters and motorcycles and have never had an issue with electronics. I use a soft microfiber to dry with. I also carry a package of Pledge wipes on the bike to clean while traveling to spot clean bugs off my windshield and helmet visor.

Steve, Walmart has very inexpensive bike covers for 20 bucks. I keep my 919 and Silverwing under a Bike Barn cover and my B650 under the Walmart cover. Interestingly my Burgman stays dryer and cleaner under a $20 cover compared to my $500 Bike Barn.
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tinman
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru


Number of posts : 1299
Age : 73
Location : Matheson, Ontario, Canada
Points : 4979
Registration date : 2011-11-29

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 7:09 am

I use the pressure washer to lightly wet my swing ,avoiding the wheel bearings,then I fill up a bucket of water with a dab of dish soap and 2 table spoon of Finish jet dry, and scrub off all the dirty bits. I rinse off with the pressure washer and let dry to a spotless shine .I keep the left over water with the jet dry solution for 2 more wash .The cheap Turtle wax will keep my swing shinny for one month . I wash my Swing wash every day ,and wax 3 times a riding season.
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Meldrew
Visiting Curmudgeon
Meldrew

Number of posts : 3793
Location : York, North Yorkshire, England UK
Points : 7855
Registration date : 2010-11-16

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 7:53 am

There's no point waxing plastic panels, that's why many maxi riders use products like aerosol household polishes like Pledge that give an anti- static shiny finish. I've been using Plastex in a similar way ever since I bought a can back in the Nineties.

Cleaning a Silver Wing is pretty easy, the only rules I have are avoiding riding on country roads after heavy rains where farm machinery like tractors coming out of fields  throw up mud from their tyre treads coming out onto the roads. Riding through that crap on wet roads creates a muddy broth that can take ages to remove if it dries on.

My most important cleaning rules is to always make the effort to hose down and wash the scooter after every ride in winter, regardless of freezing temperaturs, fading light, and the general inconvenience. Road salt and grit is a corrosive mixture that wreaks havoc on alloy and mild steel in a very short time if you don't remove it. Anti corrosion sprays have their place but they don't dislodge or neutralise salt that collects in all the nooks and crannies on the average maxi scooter.
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DanB
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
DanB

Number of posts : 174
Age : 71
Location : Troup, Tx
Points : 3151
Registration date : 2013-09-02

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeTue May 05, 2015 8:51 am

Meldrew, good tips for northern climes where rock salt brine is used for ice on roads in winter. Grew up in New England and my Dad had to rebuild the floor panels in the family station wagon from rusting out. Some folks had an extra car to drive in the winter, a beater as the nice car would sit out the winter.

Here in Texas they don't use brine but sand only at intersections and bridges. Not corrosive but slippery to ride on. Just yesterday I was pulling out our road onto the public road and a tractor had been working on our neighbors property and loose stuff was kicked out on the road and found myself dropping my foot to the ground to brace my SW as the back end slid out.
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hotwings
Silver Wing Expert
Silver Wing Expert
hotwings

Number of posts : 876
Age : 51
Location : Ontario
Points : 4414
Registration date : 2012-04-29

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 6:42 am

dspevack wrote:
One of the biggest problems with a high pressure wash is you can end up pushing the bike over with water pressure!

It hasn't been said here (probably because its obvious) but I'll state it anyway:
Put your bike on the center stand when you wash.

Dan
What kind of pressure washer are you using to push over a motorcycle, must be the Binford 6400 model from the set of Home Improvement  Laughing .
  I don't recommend using a pressure washer at all for washing a motorcycle, way to easy to get into trouble i.e. radiator fin damage, exhaust getting water inside, every electrical connector getting wet, decal peeling,  etc. Stick with the gentle garden hose and suds!
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DanB
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
DanB

Number of posts : 174
Age : 71
Location : Troup, Tx
Points : 3151
Registration date : 2013-09-02

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 7:55 am

+1 on avoiding use of a pressure washer unless one was extra careful. Perhaps someone experienced with one could avoid any damage. However, for the uninitiated, it is very high psi. You ever hit your hand by mistake with a blast of water from one?
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Dale N.
Site Admin
Dale N.

Number of posts : 1755
Age : 75
Location : Princeton, MN
Points : 4661
Registration date : 2014-02-13

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 10:38 am

I have a 1300 psi pressure washer and use it all the time on my SWing and other vehicles. When I'm washing critical areas like the dash etc. I spread out the stream so there's not as much pressure going to a certain area and spray quickly. I've never had any problems with electrical or any decals coming off. With that said, I NEVER use it with the spray at its narrowest/most pressure. And I'm careful around other critical areas too like wheel bearings and the exhaust openings.
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SteveSilverWing
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
SteveSilverWing

Number of posts : 133
Age : 66
Location : Los Angeles, California
Points : 2524
Registration date : 2015-04-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 10:45 am

Wow!! I certainly learned a lot about bike washing...dos and don'ts. Since I don't own a pressure washer, and have decided not to go to a pressure wash location, I simply bought a bottle of Maguires Wash and Polish and a pack of micro-fiber cloths at a car outlet near me. I tried it and it works great!! When more difficult times clean-ups come around, like mud and other stuff, I'll use a garden hose and dry up immediately afterwards.

Thanks for all the bike wash tips and techniques, guys!
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tinman
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru


Number of posts : 1299
Age : 73
Location : Matheson, Ontario, Canada
Points : 4979
Registration date : 2011-11-29

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 4:38 pm

If one can ride at 65 mph in the poring rain with no problems , what's up with that .The UK riders should have done some riding ing the rain and let us know it went .
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model28a
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru
model28a

Number of posts : 2089
Age : 68
Location : St.Pete.FL.
Points : 6412
Registration date : 2010-02-03

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 4:45 pm

I ride my scooters in all kinds of weather as my main transportation and haven't had any problems with riding in the rain. And we do get some wicked rain sometimes.
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scooter trash
Scooter Rider
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Number of posts : 24
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Location : Virginia.....USA
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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 10:50 pm

Speaking of pressure washers.......they are on My list of things to be "Outlawed" when I am put in charge!.....They do more damage in the long list of miseries that they cause than the "good" things that they do.
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dspevack
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru
dspevack

Number of posts : 2008
Age : 56
Location : Miami, FL
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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeWed May 06, 2015 11:09 pm

I owned warehouses for several years.
2000 psi electric pressure washer takes paint off walls, washes out the filth left by dirty tenants, and cleans concrete and pavement. Like any tool, they are very valuable when used properly.
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exavid
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru


Number of posts : 2658
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Location : Medford, Oregon
Points : 7246
Registration date : 2009-07-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeThu May 07, 2015 10:16 pm

Yes indeed, I have a Honda 3100psi washer. Even with the wide nozzle I wouldn't touch my bikes with it. It will make an old cedar fence look like new wood though.
Today I was cleaning my K1100LT in preparation to sell it. A spritz of engine cleaner on her under side and a light spray of water on the topside followed by a gentle wipe down and Lemon Pledge and she shines like new. The engine cleaner nicely cleaned off all the old road dirt and little bits of tar. This bike should look like new, it's a '95 with 12,000 miles, always been kept indoors when not on the road. I reluctantly put her up for sale, knee problems, but will miss it. You can see some nice pictures of my museum piece on Medford, OR Craigslist.
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DanB
Maxi-Scooter Rider
Maxi-Scooter Rider
DanB

Number of posts : 174
Age : 71
Location : Troup, Tx
Points : 3151
Registration date : 2013-09-02

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeThu May 07, 2015 10:56 pm

exavid wrote:
Yes indeed, I have a Honda 3100psi washer. Even with the wide nozzle I wouldn't touch my bikes with it. It will make an old cedar fence look like new wood though.
Today I was cleaning my K1100LT in preparation to sell it. A spritz of engine cleaner on her under side and a light spray of water on the topside followed by a gentle wipe down and Lemon Pledge and she shines like new. The engine cleaner nicely cleaned off all the old road dirt and little bits of tar. This bike should look like new, it's a '95 with 12,000 miles, always been kept indoors when not on the road. I reluctantly put her up for sale, knee problems, but will miss it. You can see some nice pictures of my museum piece on Medford, OR Craigslist.

I know how you feel about getting rid of your motorcycle. I'm doing the same thing too as I sell my 919. Rode it the other day and sure got a grin on my face. Bike is too bloody fast for me though. I do pretty good most of the time but sometimes I act like a kid and get a bit crazy and ride it fast. If I don't sell it, it will probably kill me. So, looking at it from that perspective makes it a bit easier to part with it.
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exavid
Silver Wing Guru
Silver Wing Guru


Number of posts : 2658
Age : 78
Location : Medford, Oregon
Points : 7246
Registration date : 2009-07-17

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PostSubject: Re: Bike Wash Time   Bike Wash Time I_icon_minitimeFri May 08, 2015 12:36 am

Yeah, I have to admit that's a consideration. I do tend to entertain myself with the K bike more than I should. The days of grinding the pegs has really passed for me. I don't like to admit it but I'm definitely slower to react in my elder years. I haven't gotten into trouble yet taking my bike to the limit in the twisties but I know I'm not as smooth and steady as years past. Time stick with the scooter. Not to say I don't push the scooter a bit, and not to say this 650Gt can't carve a good turn but I don't tend to press my luck as hard on it for some reason. It's hard to admit you aren't quite up to what you could do a few years ago but it's apparent to me I'm not. Best to sell my beloved K bike.
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