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Old 04-11-2013, 03:17 PM   #31
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Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Wandering In The Desert
Oddometer: 6,217
I've bought and sold quite a few bikes, several on Craigslist, which I'm always a bit leery of because of the sheer volume of knucklewalkers on there. One that stands out is the almost weirdly perfect easy buyer.

I advertise the wife's learner dirt bike, a Honda CRF150F, on CL, and wait for the lowballers, tire kickers, etc, to start off right away. First guy who contacts me says he has the cash and wants to buy the bike. I think, yeah, sure, the bullshit is coming soon enough. We make an appointment, he shows up with a truck, takes one look at the bike (maybe 10 seconds tops), reaches in his pocket and hands me an envelope with full asking price cash inside. I ask if he wants to hear it run, or has any questions. Nope, he says that he trusts me, and he will take it. I sign over the title and help him load it and he drives away. Not what I expected, but I was ok with it!
"A person needs a little madness, or else they never dare cut the rope and be free."
~ Nikos Kazantzakis
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Old 04-11-2013, 03:40 PM   #32
Joined: Oct 2011
Location: the Kalifornia
Oddometer: 160
I bought my ducati recently, wanted a reasonable bike with a clean title for cheap and maybe something to work on.
yes I said ducati and wanted to work on.

So I find the ad for my multistrada, "it has been down on one side and is missing most of the body work and it does not run, but clean title in hand". one image from the back, I email for the vin (so I can run it by some dealers, and to check title), and I find the local ducati shop that did the service for this bikes entire life, tell me about the owner and why he bought a new bike from them 3 months ago (laid it down on the right side after hitting some gravel, was so sad didnt want to fix it)

Ok, I have to see this. I roll up after a few emails back and forth with the owner. bike is in the garage and looks to be in ok shape. This 18 year old (!) walks up to me and says it is his, proceeds to tell me he works landscaping with dad and has been pestering the orig. owner for the bike for months and he finally sold it to him. Few problems with his plan, #1 its a ducati so repairs can be $$$$, #2 he has no license or mechanical skills, #3 he knows what his "friends have told him" and he has decided he want a gixxer instead and #4 he cant get it started.

So i look the bike over, handlebar bent, one bracket cracked, no windscreen, cracked dash, but the bike had sliders on it. so that saved lots of $. He says the bike wont start because it has no battery or computer and points under the rear seat. uh wat? thats not where the ....... wait. OK. starts pointing out all the "frame holes and the fact that you can see the frame so parts must be missing" (no). I note the bike is in very good condition if a little dirty from being down but overall most is in a great condition. The kid on the other hand has no idea what this bike is supposed to look like, or work, or accessories or even motor size and keeps pointing out everything he thinks is wrong and that he just does not want it.
I make a note of the asking price ($1400), thank them and bail. Thinking to myself that the bike is worth waaaaay more than asking and I have to look into it.
I run the vin, no police action, no accident history, and the shop even has the orig owner call me and we talk, everything checked, and he sold it to the kid for $500 hoping he would get it running and enjoy it like he did. (1% problems)

3 days later the kid calls me and claims his buddy has a "gixxer" for like $900 and he wants to get it, would I be willing to buy the bike if they drop it off with some of the "parts" that came with it, for $900.
uh, sure, parting it out would net me well over $900 and i need some time killing.
Few hours later they drop it off, and a bunch of service parts still in bags, and some aftermarket parts. for $900 delivered. I gave them an extra $200 for the karma side of things.

After looking it over and popping the battery side panel, it had everything including a battery and an ecu. and with a dash plugged back in it fired up. I kept it, sold most of the spare bits (paid for the bike + reg on their own) and added some of my own, made a few changes and ride it almost every day.
Now I cant work up to the point of selling the little beast, seeing as how it had gone through so much and was passed on for so little.

weird sale. like the complete anti-craigslist deal.
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Old 04-11-2013, 04:54 PM   #33
Refuses to Grow Up!
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Tampa, FL
Oddometer: 466
Too funny! Great thread!
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 04-11-2013, 07:07 PM   #34
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Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Northeastern CT
Oddometer: 3,679
I found my Ural on an eBay ad, but the seller was local to me so I went to see the bike in person. The Ural was three years old at the time, and had about 1,000 kms on the odo. The guy boasted to me that the tool roll had never been opened, and that the bike "still had the original oil." . He also told me how relieved he was to sell it before it was due for it's first service.

I rolled the dice and paid close to his asking price, and it has been a good, fun, and surprisingly reliable bike.
"You wouldn't be riding a motorcycle if you weren't an optimist."
- Matthew Crawford
2005 Ural Tourist, 2000 Kawasaki W650
IBA #23064
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Old 04-11-2013, 07:46 PM   #35
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Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Stone Ridge, NY
Oddometer: 499
Just sold my 85 Mercedes for $1900 a couple weeks ago, this was days after listing it. Guy emailed me shortly after "that car is maybe worth $500 for parts with the issues it has"

said issues? rear brake caliper gets a bit sticky when not used, blinker stalk needed replacing, un-seeable rust hole in trunk. That's it. There were a bunch of other things that could have used attention, but it ran solid with no major problems. Kid that purchased it will hopefully have a good time with her.

While back when I sold my Ninja 500, kid called asking what I wanted for it. Laughed over the phone, I heard in the background "for that peice of sh....." strange being that he was calling me for a price, $1800 with a spare (blown head gasket) motor and spare carbs, newly installed engine with 500 miles on it. Got my asking price for that too. Thinking back to that bike, I really could have parted the engine and carbs for a good deal extra. I just didn't want to bother.
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:38 AM   #36
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Joined: Apr 2006
Location: Near Cortland NY
Oddometer: 3,768
My fave is 'no, the bike hasn't been sitting' and the test ride blows angry wasps out the tail pipe.
---->>Thanks for the rotor, guys!<<----
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:50 AM   #37
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Joined: Aug 2010
Location: New Hampshire
Oddometer: 1,929
When I first got back into riding a few years ago after about a 10 year break I found a Suzuki GS500E for sale on Craigslist. This was almost the same bike I had sold years before. This one was about 3 years newer than my old one.

I go take look....the seller is selling it for a friend who had to move out of state for a job so he knows really nothing about the bike other than it has been sitting for almost a year outside covered. The bike is in decent tires, obviously had a drop but the frame seemed sound....he put the battery in but it was flat...put the key in the tank to look inside and it snapped off with out any effort....I'm about to walk away but I make him an offer. He calls his friend and he agrees to my price....onto the trailer it goes. The next day I easily extract the key from the tank...have a new one made....put fresh gas in it charge the battery and it fires right up. After some sputtering and coughing its starts to run better and I'm zipping around town.

a month later I trade it on on a new Versys because I was reminded why I sold the first one....backaches, soar wrists and slow.
"Beer cans explode with a nice loud pop when they are hit by a Heidenau K60 at 40 miles an hour. Now my bike smells like last call..." Me
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Old 04-13-2013, 05:18 AM   #38
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Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Europe, Austria
Oddometer: 199
Some time ago I was crawling out of some financial hardship and was pondering to get back on a bike. So I talk to a friend and he says that he'll look around. Some days later he tells me about an ad in a newspaper.
"Honda, Enduro, Red 750, call xxxxxxx"
I call and a lady picks up the phone, she does not know much about the bike.
Her son was the owner and he had been killed in a car accident, and she was selling off his collection. I looked at the bike and there was nothing wrong with it. 14000 kms, no scratches and he had even bought a new battery and had not filled it with acid yet.
Since I didn't haggle about the price she even gave me some spares she had.
There were some other nice bikes in the collection.
One was a Virago 400 the boy had bought for his girlfriend. Some other folks came to see that bike when I came to fetch mine with a trailer. The "buyer" had his "expert" with him- the buyer asking the mother about a lot of stupid things like whether she has a sports fairing etc, and the "expert" leads the "buyer"to the side and tells him that he will never ever find a Harley that cheap.... Obviously the expert knows the secret model line of stealth Harleys with the trickily applied badges saying "Yamaha".. Stealthy...
They manage to get the bike started, (something that is very complex, it involves a key, a choke, petcock and a button, as well as a gear shift lever and a clutch!) and now this stealthy hog sits there purring like a sewing machine. Obviously you need to blip the throttle on a stealth hog, the "expert" tells his friend that since the bike revs so freely it must have a screaming eagle camshaft and a lot of work done, don't worry about the sound (too quiet), we'll just cut off the ends of the pipes and then it can breathe...
(All through this I was checking the straps that held my bike on the trailer, and adding some more straps until my poor little XL looked like Gulliver).

Some 2 weeks later I see the poor little Virago again.. everything rattlecanned black, Harley decals on the tank, exhaust cut off etc... standing in front of a LEO who was very interested in the modifications.... and the bike had a total mileage of 120 kilometers...

When I sold my RG500Gamma with a factory engine and a Reynards frame I had a lot of discussions with parents where the son told his pops that this would be the ideal beginners bike because it does not have too much displacement, is lightweight and sounds like a moped... and the daddies believing the little shits.
They were pissed off that I would not let them do a quick test ride..

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Old 04-13-2013, 06:36 AM   #39
Bill Harris
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: backwoods Alabama
Oddometer: 8,529
Originally Posted by AlpineRAM
One was a Virago 400 the boy had bought for his girlfriend...

Some 2 weeks later I see the poor little Virago again.. everything rattlecanned black, Harley decals on the tank, exhaust cut off etc... standing in front of a LEO...

'73 R60/5 Toaster
Luddite. Not just a philosophy, a way of life...
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Old 04-13-2013, 06:57 AM   #40
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: alabama
Oddometer: 3,106
sv 650, described as wrecked, but ridable. $3000

no title
tag 2 years past due
1/2 vin missing
forks bent
wheel bent
chain shot
new battery

hmm, ok looked promising for a $1200 offer.

"does it run ?" I asked
"hell ya!" reply

switch on (no key) fuel pump primed, started up first touch of the buttton. sounded great. shifted through gears and no clutch slippage. cool this might be worth $1300 !

shut the bike down, went to my truck to grab cash.

walked back, there was a puddle on the ground and smoke pouring from the harness,I think.

put my cash back and grabbed the water hose (no extinguisher)

he offered it for $1500 as is, seeing my dissatisfaction.

thanks, moving on.
Yes, Android AND iphone GPS works without cellular data. Use offline maps and enjoy. (thanks drtbyk!)
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Old 04-13-2013, 06:58 AM   #41
Honey Badger
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Joined: Sep 2011
Location: M-boro, TN
Oddometer: 630
I sold a wrecked (by me) FZR600 back when those were still being made. I had done a ton of engine and suspension work to the bike so when I wrecked it and tweaked the frame, I bought a Vance and Hines special edition to swap my engine and suspension onto, put all the stock parts on the bent frame, patched up the fairing and advertised it for $1000. I fully expected to take $500-600 since the engine and other mechanicals were worth at least that much and the bike ran and could be ridden.

Kid calls me at work and says he wants to see it... "sure, when?" "How about in 30 minutes?" He shows up, I tell him everything I know of that is wrong with it. He looks at it for 5 minutes, pulls out a WAD of $100's and counts off 10 and hands them to me. He tells me he doesnt have any tie downs and would it be ok to come back and buy the bike later. I tossed a set of tiedowns to him, helped him load the bike in his truck and sent him on his way.

Buying my current VFR750, I found it on CL, called the seller. He tells me about the bike, and I ask specifically if the R/R is original and does it need to be replaced. Nope, he says, its got the upgraded finned R/R and it charges just fine. I show up, sure enough its got the finned unit, looks crusty as hell and probably came off a junk bike but whatever. We negotiate a deal where I pay him 75% of his price for a test ride to be refunded if I don't like the bike. I take it on a 15-20 mile ride, like it, buy it, load it in my truck and leave. Get home, fucker wont start, battery is dead. Jump it off, grab my meter, not charging. Check the stator, it's fine. WTF??

The bike wasn't perfect when I bought it, and he told me everything else about it that was wrong. It had been on a battery tender (he insisted on keeping the connector for it) and he used it after every ride "because I just don't ride much anymore". Obviously he knew the R/R was junk. It wouldn't have been a deal breaker, I probably would have asked for $75 off max. Regardless, I got a nice new MOSFET unit, problem solved.
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Old 04-13-2013, 06:59 AM   #42
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: alabama
Oddometer: 3,106
ninja 600 - $2500

said it slid once, a little rash.

bike looked good for its age. sure, some rash, tires were 40%, chain ok, lubed but not clean. battery was old but healthy. dash lights worked and it started fine.

wiggled and kicked things before I got on to try.

"2nd and 3rd don't catch real good" says he.

turned off bike, said thanks and went for a burger instead.
Yes, Android AND iphone GPS works without cellular data. Use offline maps and enjoy. (thanks drtbyk!)
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Old 04-13-2013, 07:03 AM   #43
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: alabama
Oddometer: 3,106
ninja 650 - $3500

sounded good in the ad, younger guy , only had it one summer.

cracked frame typical of thed 2006's
knot in rear, very well worn tire
rusty chain
punched side case, jbweld
rattly bottom end
"custom acropovik exhaust" good for extra 20 hp (right)

nice kid, shitted up bike, got a burger instead
Yes, Android AND iphone GPS works without cellular data. Use offline maps and enjoy. (thanks drtbyk!)
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Old 04-13-2013, 07:05 AM   #44
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: alabama
Oddometer: 3,106
200something katana

fresh oil wiped off ground, wet under engine with oil

asked about it "ya, I just changed it 10 minutes ago"
didn't want to start it for me, no test rides, cash only non negotiable

said he'd help me load it though.

ya, got a burger.
Yes, Android AND iphone GPS works without cellular data. Use offline maps and enjoy. (thanks drtbyk!)
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Old 04-13-2013, 07:07 AM   #45
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: alabama
Oddometer: 3,106
2004 drz
ad said it got used in hare scrambles, so I expected a cluster

bike was clean, quiet (for a drz) and new tires
went through the gears with my son on the tailgate waiting

found, when I got home:
bad stator, bad battery, bad tube

16000 miles later (22000 total), I'm happy
Yes, Android AND iphone GPS works without cellular data. Use offline maps and enjoy. (thanks drtbyk!)
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