Everyone deserves a second chance; even motorbikes!
There are many reasons to prefer a second hand motorcycle over a brand new one. And there are a host of used, second hand vehicles available for those needing them.
But before you get excited over the amazing prices, there are a few aspects you must check thoroughly or you’ll end up regretting the purchase. Second hand or not, it’s still money out of your hard earned lot.
A good start
We’ve steadily been encouraging first timers to get themselves a second hand motorcycle before they jump onto a spanking new one. It just makes more sense. New riders will manage to get bumps and scratches. Hell, even seasoned ones do! But if you are a novice motorbiker, never go alone to purchase a second hand bike.
Take along an expert
Now we don’t expect you to hang with celebrity motorcyclists but anybody who has previously owned a motorcycle will do as a tag along partner. Don’t settle on the first motorbike you spot, inspect a few so that you can compare your findings. Try not to keep the appointments after dark, you may miss out on some crucial points due to lack of light.
Do a complete investigation for scratches, dents or bumps to get a good idea about the motorbike’s history. Shallow, short scratches could indicate innocent tip overs but long, deep gashes and cracks could require an internal check.
Test ride it
There’s a lot you can learn about a machine by the way it sounds. Take it for a spin to check fork, brakes, tires. Any rickety, clanging sounds that don’t belong? Do the brakes operate smoothly, are the pads worn out? Does the clutch release easily the way it should? You don’t want to be paying what you’ve saved in fixing up the motorbike. Many owners are willing to get small adjustments done prior to selling if they are requested to so don’t be scared to ask.
Pay special attention to tires
Tread depth, date code and profile are the quickest ways to test tires. Also, look to see how worn out they look!
Don’t forget the battery and electricals
Start with testing all the switches and lights functions. Don’t leave out the battery inspection. A simple trick is to rely on the ‘starter cranking’ to judge the battery’s condition.
Engine and Carburettor
Test riding will make most things clear regarding the engine’s functioning but after you take it round the block, check for leaks.
Ask for service records
These are a good indication about how the past owner’s been treating the machine. A good service record means a happy future. Talking to the owner will also give you an idea about how well acquainted, he (or she) is with the vehicle. That will also give you some idea about how well taken care of it is.
Clear all doubts
You are absolutely allowed to ask anything you wish from the owner of the motorcycle. So clear all doubts. In fact write them down before and during the visit but don’t hesitate to question. And only decide once all your queries are answered and you have a good feeling about the purchase.
Then all that’s left to do is set free on your new set of wheels!