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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was about 75 miles away in Tennessee when my right foot slipped off the peg. I took a look at the peg and it was wet. So was my boot. The engine temperature looked OK and the engine light did not come on, so I kept riding toward home. I stopped in Oneida TN to take a look and smell the fluid. As I expected, it smelled like antifreeze. It was not such a massive leak that I expected to immediately run out of fluid, so I got off the scenic route and took the highway to Tri-County Honda in Corbin KY. The bike got there with no additional issues.

The bike stinks horribly from the antifreeze and there is a lot of green stuff dried up on the exhaust. My boot stinks as bad as the bike. It'll be a week or more before I get the bike back. I'm glad I have an extra motorcycle.

This bike is nearly eight years old and it has about 57,000 miles on the odometer.
 

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Apparently there is a seal on the water pump shaft that leaks inside the housing covering it. It seals oil in the eng and coolant in the pump. The cover has a drain hose. I kept getting a few drops of coolant when starting the bike especially at colder temps. Then it got worse and would seep some when ya shut the bike off and pressure was still built up. Long story short it was a $400 repair but that included changing out all fluids at the same time. Worst part was the bike was tied up for 35 days as they waited for the housing cover "O" ring. I'm pretty sure its molded to the shape of the housing not just a simple circle shape. My dealer tells me Honda ATV's and Side by Sides all have a similar water pump set up. Please keep us updated on what your leak turned out to be. I never had anything on the pipes or a boot. It was all under the engine.
 

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Apparently there is a seal on the water pump shaft that leaks inside the housing covering it. It seals oil in the eng and coolant in the pump. The cover has a drain hose. I kept getting a few drops of coolant when starting the bike especially at colder temps. Then it got worse and would seep some when ya shut the bike off and pressure was still built up. Long story short it was a $400 repair but that included changing out all fluids at the same time. Worst part was the bike was tied up for 35 days as they waited for the housing cover "O" ring. I'm pretty sure its molded to the shape of the housing not just a simple circle shape. My dealer tells me Honda ATV's and Side by Sides all have a similar water pump set up. Please keep us updated on what your leak turned out to be. I never had anything on the pipes or a boot. It was all under the engine.
I'm hoping it's just his lower radiator hose, next to the exhaust pipe. I just don't like the idea of the hose so close to the exhaust.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
As it turns out, I have damaged the radiator beyond repair. I don't remember any big noises. I'll be getting a new radiator mounted as soon as my dealer can get one.

I've ridden hundreds of thousands of miles on water-cooled bikes and this is the first time I've had a problem with a radiator.

I hate to spend this much money on an eight year old bike. But it's highly unlikely that Honda will make anything new to replace it any time soon. The Gold Wing is too big. And with the NT1100 coming to America, there's no room in Honda's lineup for another CTX1300. I'm really at a loss for a bike that could replace the CTX. So I'll fix it and ride it a while longer.
 

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As it turns out, I have damaged the radiator beyond repair. I don't remember any big noises. I'll be getting a new radiator mounted as soon as my dealer can get one.

I've ridden hundreds of thousands of miles on water-cooled bikes and this is the first time I've had a problem with a radiator.

I hate to spend this much money on an eight year old bike. But it's highly unlikely that Honda will make anything new to replace it any time soon. The Gold Wing is too big. And with the NT1100 coming to America, there's no room in Honda's lineup for another CTX1300. I'm really at a loss for a bike that could replace the CTX. So I'll fix it and ride it a while longer.
Was sure hoping it was something simple. It's kind of late to close the barn door now, but have you considered a radiator guard?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If I can get another half million miles before the next broken radiator, I'll be about ready to stop riding anyway. But of course, I could break it again on the way home from the dealer.

I like the CTX1300 better than any other bike I've ever owned. I've been looking for something to eventually replace it. But all the bikes in the size range I'm looking for are chain drive. And most of them sit too high. And most of them have buzzy or pulsing motors. Honda parts get difficult to find about ten years after a model goes out of production. We are getting close to that time. If I can't find a replacement, I'll ride this one until I can't keep it running anymore.

I wish Honda would make a four-cylinder, 1200 cc version of the Gold Wing with all the amenities. Or, even better, a refreshed version of the CTX.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I got a call from the shop. The radiator has been replaced, the rear tire has been replaced, and they've done a full service on the bike.

I'll pick it up tomorrow and enjoy the nearly perfect weather on a rare day off work.

Life is good!
 

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Wonder if a radiator screen would have prevented that? I bought a cheap Chinese version online and had it powder coated locally for $20. But lots of guys have painted theirs too. Might be worth checking into. Also the front fender extension might keep more stuff from being thrown up. Glad your back on the road. Stay safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've put more than half a million miles on bikes with radiators and this is the first time I've knocked a hole in one. I don't remember hearing anything loud enough to have done this much damage. I had hose issues on my first ST1100 at about 145,000 miles. That was a much slower leak.

I think I'm going to run without a protector on this bike. But I'll be fitting protectors to all my radiators going forward. When I trade the NIken for the Mandello in the Autumn, I'll get a protector. Whenever some bike company makes a decent replacement for the CTX1300, I'll get a protector for that one too.

Does you bike run hotter with the protector in place?
 
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I've put more than half a million miles on bikes with radiators and this is the first time I've knocked a hole in one. I don't remember hearing anything loud enough to have done this much damage. I had hose issues on my first ST1100 at about 145,000 miles. That was a much slower leak.

I think I'm going to run without a protector on this bike. But I'll be fitting protectors to all my radiators going forward. When I trade the NIken for the Mandello in the Autumn, I'll get a protector. Whenever some bike company makes a decent replacement for the CTX1300, I'll get a protector for that one too.

Does you bike run hotter with the protector in place?
It runs normal temp but the fan might run more in stop and go traffic or slow conditions on a hot day. I've never experienced overheating even pulling a loaded trailer.
 

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If I can get another half million miles before the next broken radiator, I'll be about ready to stop riding anyway. But of course, I could break it again on the way home from the dealer.
I have passed the 1.4 million miles on motorcycles over the past 56 years, and I have owned bikes with drive shaft and radiator for at least half of that, and never had a radiator problem myself.

I fear however I may not be able to ride any longer due to muscle problems with my legs. long story short, I have a CTX 1300 with less than 10 K on it that I may end up selling.

I am giving myself till next spring, and if it still looks like I may not have the strength in my right leg I will have to face the music and sell it.
 
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