Sadly, I have to say based on my own past experience of 36+ years of both new but mostly used bikes, even ONE mile on a used bike may just be too much. I just don’t know what it IS with most people and bikes – but overall my experience has been the majority of people will abuse and pull schitt on bikes without even thinking twice about it, that they wouldn’t even consider doing to they’re car or even a dog! The bottom line is this: If you’re buying used you ARE buying someone else’s problems (and whatever they DID to the poor scoot). And there’s got to be a reason BEYOND whatever trumped up story they mange to come up with to tell you. IF your bucks down OR your wanting an older bike they don’t make no more, you got NO choice.
However IF you have the option, always bite the bullet and buy new – JMO. NO guarantees it will be better, but based on the ODDS they’ll be in your favor. Most of the bikes I’ve bought in the past few decades have been used. Mostly because they were out of production models that had come and gone. And also because I’m willing to spend the time, money, energy and dog-gone-it sheer HEARTACHE to try and nurse them back to health, despite the complete and utter total abuse these fine rides went though the hands of IDIOTS before me! But most people surely don’t have the time or stomach for these kind of activities today. You’ll save yourself a ton of time, money and pain by going for new these days, IF you can swing it. However if NOT, that’s what forums like this one are seriously for these days, to HELP you out. ;-)
As far as total service life, my contention is IF you could buy a bike NEW, take proper care of it, and NOT abuse it, you’re then looking at making the 100,000+ mile bugaboo EASY on original rings, valves and bearings. That at least has been my experience of 400,000+ miles worth of bikes. And I’m talking just about ANY bike…. IF it’s treated with respect. Gold-Wings are of course a given – they seriously were made LIKE cars and so sure, they last accordingly. My 1978 GL1000 (purchased new) had 134,000+ miles on it when sold – mechanically it was still in AAA+++ condition! BUT even older Harleys could make the grade: My former 1981 Harley (purchased new) Shovelhead had 37,000+ miles on it when sold – it was in Perfect condition (compression, no smoking, etc.) when sold. These were proclaimed to need a rebuild at 45,000. Others HAD been known to get up to 80,000 to 100,000 without a rebuild. I’m sure mine would have been the latter.
And dozens of other examples I could post. But the point is, it’s pretty much up to YOU. Respect the machine, treat the bike like a friend instead of a ‘thing’ and I promise it will run and LIVE a good long time. Nuff’ said.
I am looking into buying a used motorcycle but I was wondering how many miles is considered a lot for a used motorcycle? I'm sure there are other things that factor in such as type of riding done and routine maintenance but generally speaking how many miles are considered high?