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Old 04-09-2013, 03:35 PM   #16
Refuses to Grow Up!
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Tampa, FL
Oddometer: 464
Actually, I love dickering on used bikes. They are almost NEVER in the condition advertised, as most owners aren't "bike smart" enough to even find the issues wrong with their "mint" machine, much less try to cover them up. From leaking front fork seals (common) to hard shifting, I always find stuff that gives me some negotiating leverage.

OK, so I'll admit I probably paid a little more than I should have (maybe a couple of hundred bucks) for my Ducati 749 Dark...but the owner was a dork who shouldn't have been allowed to own it in the first place. To quote him: "It scared me the first time I took it to the track." Well, no sh## Sherlock! It is not your cookie cutter 600cc inline four. After that, it sat in his garage on a battery tender for most of its life, other than when he rode it to bike nights to try and impress people. It was worth the extra $s to rescue the poor thing. A little resuscitation by my favorite master Ducati tech and it is now an AWESOME steet and track bike!
Helmet laws merely delay Darwinism. I fully support an individual's right to be eventually makes more room for the rest of us.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:36 PM   #17
Gimpy, Yet Alacritous
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Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Indianapolis
Oddometer: 2,256
My favorite trick is the guy who puts a bike up for sale, then enters the witness protection program. Or joins a monastery. Or goes to jail for a month. Or whatever it is these dickbags do when they vanish completely.

I traded a couple of emails and photos with a guy selling a very nice low-mileage 2007 KLR, then he vanished. No response at all.


A few days later, I found a pinkish but low-mileage 2005 for $1,500 less a little further away. I bought it the very next morning in a shining example of an absolutely zero-bullshit transaction. Seriously, it was glorious... so rare.

A week after that, the first guy calls me with absolutely no explanation or preamble and says he's got a bunch of people lined up who want the bike, but if I commit to $500 over asking price, he'll hold it for me until the next morning...
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2002 Suzuki Vstrom DL1000, Midnight Blue
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:48 PM   #18
Joined: Mar 2013
Location: Akron, OH
Oddometer: 49

Great thread.

So last year I was on the hunt for a sub 5k 600 SS. Pooling through all the morons posting their "serviced" and "babied" financial blunders was tough.
I came across a 04 ninja 636 about an hour away and the bike looked clean in pictures. Said it had been dropped once since he owned it, and in doing so he scraped up the brand new two bros pipe he just put on it. In the ad it was at 4500.

Got into contact with the guy and we worked opposite schedules. Told him I could make the hour trip in a day or two.

Get off work around nine pm the day I was set to go look at the bike. Get to my house at around 10 then start the hour trip with two of my roommates so someone could drive the car back if I purchased it. I had really wanted a 636, and although I was looking for an 05+ I figured I could negotiate with the guy - the nada value was around 4k.

We get there, middle of BFE (awesome riding roads, was getting extremely hopeful this was the one just for the ride home) and despite texting and calling no response. So I go up to the house and knock, some lights are on. Stand there for about a minute or two before I see some younger broad poke her head around the corner. She comes and opens the door and I explain I'm here to see the kaw. She was super quiet and submissive, but told me to come inside.
I turn the corner and her bf, the seller, is passed out on a couch. She wakes him up and with another awkward moment were out to the garage.

So, this guy was country. I guess you could say redneck. Very young too, obviously younger than me (I was 25 ). I notice through his thick draw that he's either slow or drunk while opening the garage door. Here's where it gets weird.
The bike is surrounded by tools toys and crap. Totally surrounded. He straddles it by the front, with his crotch on the headlight and starts to upright the bike to attempt to pull it out.
He drops it on himself. It's at this point that I realize he is sloshed.

At this point one of my roommates had gotten out of the car and was walking up the drive right as this happened. Apparently I just jumped grabbed the bike up off of him and said 'come on man you got to be careful with these things!"
At this point I was mad. Dude was drunk and stuttering. I started hinting at this point his bike was worth no where near what he was asking. Noticed multiple drop scratches and neglected simple cleaning. Asked him about service he said he knew nothing. Had owned the bike for less than a month.
At this point I was getting ready to spit out a offer at less then half of what he was asking, but I felt I needed to ride it.
He met me with a little hesitation. I just said I wanted to go half a mile down his street.
He couldn't get the bike out of the driveway because it was a single and full of cars. So drunk as a skunk he fires it up and with no hesitation rides it jarringly off a curb into the street. I'm just shaking my head at this point.

I return from my minute test ride and offer 2k. Unfortunately he didn't accept. Proabably for the better though.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:39 PM   #19
Bill Harris
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: backwoods Alabama
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Originally Posted by bwringer
A week after that, the first guy calls me with absolutely no explanation or preamble and says he's got a bunch of people lined up who want the bike, but if I commit to $500 over asking price, he'll hold it for me until the next morning...
I'd have been inclined to "commit" to $500... and then disappear.

Playing games on a vehicle sale is a PITA...

'73 R60/5 Toaster
Luddite. Not just a philosophy, a way of life...
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:12 PM   #20
Ink-stained wretch
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Joined: Dec 2003
Location: Southern Oregon coast
Oddometer: 1,273
Had a VFR800 for sale. Put it on CL. Guy calls, says he's coming with cash, the full asking price. Wants directions. I say, "Where are you?" He names a city in Southern California. I'm in southern Oregon. Ooookay, then. "I'll be there tomorrow," he says, and hangs up.

Next day I get a call. He says he's on the northern California coast somewhere, not exactly sure where, but he describes the town he's in and by chance I recognize it.

"Where do I go next?" he says. "Do you have a map?" I say, then immediately regret it. Of course he has a map, I think, I shouldn't have insulted him. "No," he says, "I don't have a map. But there's one on the wall outside this gas station I'm at."

He gropes his way to my house after a few hours. He backs his pickup truck into the driveway, gets out, and walks straight into the garage where the bike is parked. As he passes me he hands me an envelope. It's full of hundred-dollar bills. He doesn't start the bike, or ask to hear it run, or ask me anything about it. He loads it into his truck and ties it down with what looks like anchor rope off a tugboat, damn near slicing his thumb off in the process.

As he's leaving he starts to shake my hand, then looks down at his bloody thumb, and pulls his hand back. "Bye, and thanks," he says, drives down the street, and is gone. We spoke maybe 30 words to each other the entire time he was there.

On the surface that was the perfect deal. But whenever I think about it, I just shake my head and wonder WTF happened there.
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Old 04-10-2013, 02:01 AM   #21
Joined: Jan 2006
Location: Santa Maria, CA
Oddometer: 1,281
What cracks me up is when someone comes to look at a bike I have for sale, a less than knowledgeable buyer, who brings their "experienced" friend, who fucking knows no more than the buyer, but seems to have a brother or something that let him ride his "roadrace" bike one time, so he knows what he's looking at. And yet he doesn't. I just let them tell me how much they know, what is wrong with the bike, and no, I won't take their lowball offer. Because they are wrong about what they think they know.
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Old 04-10-2013, 03:56 AM   #22
Refuses to Grow Up!
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Tampa, FL
Oddometer: 464
True Story: Put my Honda Superhawk up for sale a few years ago. Guy from Ohio buys it, sight unseen. Says he has a shipper coming to pick it up. A week later two good ol' boys from Michigan show up in an OLD Dodge pick-up (late 70s), pulling a beat-up enclosed trailer that looks like it should be hauling lawn mowers. Say they are there for the bike. I call the buyer and he confirms them. The good ol' boys say they've just been down to the FL Keys dropping off and picking up shipments and are headed north again. Then they say they are really hot and tired and want to know if they can go for a swim in one of our subdivision lakes. I very SLOWLY explain to them that in Florida, we don't swim in most local lakes. Alligators (we've got several, up to 10 ft), snapping turtles, various water snakes, etc. The guys get wide-eyed. Then the good ol' boys say they were driving through the Everglades and freaked out when they saw the panther and bear crossing signs. By this time I'm rolling. (You're more likely to get struck by lightening than ever see the bears or panthers). I agree with them, saying this is really wild country. Now I can barely choke back the laughter. The guys finish up by saying they are never coming back to Florida. They load the bike up, sign the paperwork and we say good-bye. As I watch them go, I see them get in the beat up old pickup, leave the windows down and strip off their shirts. They have evidently just driven through the Everglades swamps in the middle of summer with no a/c in the truck. Nice guys, but I don't think they intend a return trip to FL, LOL.
Helmet laws merely delay Darwinism. I fully support an individual's right to be eventually makes more room for the rest of us.
AMA, IBA, MSTA, BMWMOA, Ducatista, MSF RiderCoach, Track Coach, OEM Demo Team Manager
2012 R1200GS Rallye, 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP, 2013 Honda NC700X DCT, 1990 Honda GB500 TT, 1976 Honda XL350 Enduro
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Old 04-10-2013, 04:24 AM   #23
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: Tallinn, Estonia
Oddometer: 28

Went to look at a 2009 Kawa Ninja 250r about 200kms from where I live. The guy said it is in good condition...turned up and the frame was wonky. When I pointed that out, the guy who had brought it from Germany and "repaired" it himself started the most unbelievably over-done acting you have ever seen. Needless to say I was quite pissed, but sitting in the pub before the 200km drive back, it seemed quite comical. I also believe he was quite drunk when we came to view the bike. I'll phone him soon from another number to see whether he is still looking for some poor soul who won't notice how bad the frame is in...
'96 DR650SE in the snow...
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Old 04-10-2013, 05:03 AM   #24
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Joined: Sep 2012
Location: Pocono Mt.s PA
Oddometer: 174
I've only bought one used bike, and it was from a friend so that wasn't bad at all.

However I sold a bike and that was weird.

I've sold many things on craigslist before.

I listed my 2001 Suzuki Maruader(800cc metric cruiser) w/24k miles and got in touch with a guy at 6:30 at night.

This guy offers me a fair price(1800) and I take the bike to him.

I pull up, remove my helmet and put it in my dad's car, come back to the bike and he says "I'll take it" after looking at it for 30 seconds in the dark with no flashlight.

I never got to explain anything to him or show him the bike. He gave me the cash and I signed the title and took the plate and that was it.

This guy must have been about 350-400 pounds too. Wanted to ride my poor marauder. I weigh 200 and had a 130 pound girl on that bike and it rode kinda poorly. This guy says he can't wait to get his wife on the back. I'm sure she ain't no twiggy being married to his fat ass. So sometimes I wonder how my bike is doing under all that weight or if it sits in a garage gathering dust.
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:35 PM   #25
Just another guy
Joined: Sep 2004
Location: wherever I am told to be
Oddometer: 597
How about a sellers story,

I thought I had a '0x year KLR, registration said '0x, bought is as an '0x etc. Never looked at the title until the guy came to buy it and said, "I thought this color was an '0x-2, did you replace the plastics?" I check the title and the vin, it was an '0x-2. I gave the buyer a bit of a discount and bought him dinner. Everyone walked away happy.

(I don't remember what year it really was, hence the "x")

S10 (the faster, sexier, more awesome BLACK one). Its like a mustache, with titties!!

Dastard screwed with this post 04-10-2013 at 12:55 PM
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:58 PM   #26
Big Bamboo
Aircooled & Sunbaked
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: Big Island of Hawaii
Oddometer: 4,114
Not a story about buying a bike, but when I went to transfer the title on my new to me BMW R75/6 the lady at the Kona DMV didn't believe that BMW made motorcycles. "That's a car company." uh yeah, but... I had to return with a Haynes manual and show her pictures of the bike! Even then, she wouldn't take my word on the curb weight, etc, and ended up photocopying the pages with the pertinent information...
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Old 04-10-2013, 01:07 PM   #27
Gnarly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: London, UK
Oddometer: 330
Seems like a free to advertise thing. In the UK Gumtree is popular but you learn very quickly what to look for and how ads are worded. And, no offence to anyone from these places, a very large number of bikes listed for sale in Ireland or very northern Scotland are dodgy ads and the same pics can be found on ebay in listings.
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Old 04-10-2013, 01:08 PM   #28
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Mar 2011
Location: SE Missouri
Oddometer: 1,393
Bike for Sale, but not

Showed up in the guys drive way with the cash, he said he was in a bad place right now, didn't feel like coming out side to sell the bike. Geez.
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Old 04-10-2013, 03:43 PM   #29
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Mar 2010
Location: Tucson, AZ
Oddometer: 265
I called a guy maybe about 8 years ago about a KLR. He said he was busy and that I should call him back in a week so I did. We made an appointment for me to go out to look at it. Unfortunately the time was during rush hour and the bike was on the opposite side of the city from me. I was running late and gave the guy a call and said that I would be another 20 minutes to get to his house.

I show up in less than 20 minutes and knock on his door. He comes out and sheepishly says that he wasn't sure I was coming and just sold the bike. I'm not a violent person but I wanted to punch him in the face. I called him three times about the bike the last time on the road to his house and he wasn't sure I was coming?

The least he could have done was tell me that another person was looking at the bike so I could have said something to him or turned around or let me know it was sold when I gave the call. What a dick.

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Old 04-11-2013, 02:42 PM   #30
Jamie Z
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Joined: Oct 2006
Location: on Walkabout
Oddometer: 7,827
When I was shopping for my first streetbike, I found a 10- or 15-year old Honda Goldwing in the paper which fit my budget, and I thought I might be interested in the older Goldwings.

I called the guy. He seemed ok on the phone. Said the bike was in good condition. Ran fine. No problems. He lived just a couple miles from me so I said I'd like to come by and have a look.

Took me probably less than ten minutes to get to his house. Immediately I see I'm not interested in the bike. It's pretty rough. He's got stickers all over it, and several accessories tacked onto the bike including switches haphazardly mounted on the handlebars and wires running every which way.

In any case, I knock on the door. A young guy answers. I tell him I'm there to look at the bike. "Oh, it's already sold." Huh, what? He turns back around to ask his dad who I never did see, "Didn't you already sell the Goldwing?" He turns back to me, "Yeah, it's already sold, but you can look at it if you want."

I just called about the bike. Nobody said anything about it being sold. I had a look at it as I walked back to my car. What a piece of junk.

I've bought and sold a couple bikes, and all my transactions have been pleasant and easy.

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