Buying Bike Checklist: Please contribute

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Carlts

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Hey guys,

Recently I have been scouring eBay and Gumtree in search of bikes and parts.

It has hit me how many dodgy sellers and bikes there are out there...

I am thinking of making this a dedicated thread for advice, particularly on what to look for when buying a new bike.

There are many good links out there but not all correlate with mini-bikes so a dedicated list would be sweet.

Here is a few links, but please reply with some of your experiences and advice you can give:
http://www.clarity.net/adam/buying-bike.html
http://www.legallearnerbikes.com.au/pages.php?pg=tips-on-buying-a-used-motorcycle


I will combine all in these first posts as we go. Main idea is to get a list people can use as a guide for buying bikes. I know when I first was looking years back I had no clue as to what I was buying, for all I know I was buying a death trap/ money pit ; )


Go Crazy!!!
Cheers,
Carlton
 

zwebx

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i would say, inspect disk thickness... straightness of wheels straitness of forks (usually they weep if bent) check the air filter to see how much matenence they have done... take the dip stick out and have a look at the oil..
take the thing for a ride check for knocks or rattles also stop get off the bike (if they let you take it out for a little spin) and inspect it then because they cant distract you then... if they dont allow you to ride it then ask them to take it for a spin (not as good but you can get info from it)

if its a road bike be wary of the disk size... on a ninja 250 i think it cost 300 to replace and that not including labour
 

Carlts

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^^ Cheers for the input. Good points there man.

Here is a few I can think of off my head:

- Check if air filter is clean, an unclean filter can indicate poor maintenance and means the engine could potentially have had dirt and other impurities through it often
- Check for cracked cased, oil leaks, the engine is often the most expensive component of a mini, so is crucial that it's up to scratch
- Check frame for cracks, loose bolts/stripped threads, some of these are hard to check though
-Twisted forks, bent axles can indicated poor bike treatment or the result of a big crash.
- I always check for missing parts, it can be easy to overlook, but each missing part however small is money. If it's missing a rear brake and bash plate for example it would be an additional $100 or more to fix.
 

zwebx

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and if there is anything wrong with it.. know the price to fix it and tell the person you are buying from to take the price down
 

foolsp33d

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How about making sure its a clean title.. Not stolen or written off..
http://www.stolendirtbikes.com.au/ is a good place to start for dirtbikes...

I had the ZZR in for RWC and discs were undersize and front brake light switch was inoperable... quoted over $600 to replace the brakes... went home.. took them off the spares bike.. did a quick measure.. and saved myself the $..

broken and/or scratched up lever ends and grips are often a sign a bike has been dropped. as could be said for both new grips and levers..

Check tires if they are perished or have cracks both in the tread and sidewalls.
if wheels are spoked.. check for missing or broken ones..
Check chain rings.. Shark toothed rings will ened to be replaced along with the chain.
Look at cable adjustment if applicable.. if there is little adjustment left.. you may be up for a new clutch or on an older bike with drum brakes.. shoes.
 

timeeh

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With the forks, quick check by eye can sometimes tell you if there twisted or not. Sit down on the left or right side of the bike and place yourself/your-sight parralell with the closest leg, if both legs are straight the other leg should dissapear by line of sight completely. if that makes sense. Also a quick compression check is not a bad thing, expecially as compression testers can be picked up for about $30 these days. As Foolspeed just said check the tryes (more applicable to road bikes) and check there date stamps (all "normal" tyres have them) the last bike i brought hadn't done much riding and had been out of rego for about 5yrs, after getting my suspension guy to look over it and set it up, he mentioned the tyres looked/felt old. Turns out they were 13yr old tyres, not the thing you want to be doing any "cough" decent speeds on ;)
 
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zwebx

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the only thing old tyres are good for is burnouts and a 70cc bike because they last for ever :p
 

Carlts

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Cheers for the contributions so far lads, I'm thinking of structuring via headings such as engine, suspension, etc.
 

zwebx

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another one, dont buy a bike when you are sick and or tired be on the best of your game... because you forget to talk them down and then pay too much for it
 

Rodney68

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When buying a current model bike s/hand know what the new price is for that model as i heard a guy the other day paid over the new price for a current model near new bike.
 

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