Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey! I was looking for a forum to post this and this is the perfect subthread!

Basically I am new to bikes though I've always been interested. I dont own one and never road one but I think its time to buy one.
I was hoping I could get some tips on the how and where

I want to get something cheap and broken so that I could fix it up and basically make it my baby. As far as the mechanical stuff goes I dont think that would be too much of an issue I have fixed several cars and im soon going to get an old golf and replace the engine and transmission

I'm a huge fan of classic looking bikes, moto guzzi v7 classic, Royal Enfield 500 bullet, and the Triumph Bonneville. Does anyone else have any suggestions as to what to get similar?

I've basically noticed that you can either buy a bike new [expensive]
buy them old but they're all modified and look beautiful [expensive]
or buy something incredibly rusty.
Basically the rust issue is my biggest fear because I dont really have the means of fixing that and buying the parts would be expensive

thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
943 Posts
Before you lay down money for a classic bike in need of restoration make sure replacement parts are available. I find that you can get most parts for classic Hondas for decades but most models have a few parts that are rare/expensive.

You can expect to invest a LOT of time and a fair bit of money bringing a classic bike back to running and roadworthy condition. You will also have to develop an intimate knowledge of the bike you work on because you will probably end up rebuilding the engine, the electrical system, and many other aspects of the bike.

For less work and quicker-to-the-road you can compromise and pick up a 10 or 15 year old bike for a little more money that wont take you months to rebuild.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
650 Posts
buying the parts would be expensive
Or hard to find at all. Buying an older bike can be a pain if you don't know what to do or are not mechanically inclined. I'm not saying don't do it, but I guess you'll have to decide for yourself and try to be honest with yourself. Have you taken the BRC? If not, that'll be an inexpensive way to ride a bike to see if you like it.

The TU250x has a similar look and is a very beginner friendly bike, but a lot depends on your budget.
 

·
Gone
Joined
·
23,907 Posts
I'd recommend buying lightly used, especially for a first motorcycle. Something that runs well, is mechanically sound, and safe to ride.

I've lost count of the number of people who thought they would save money buying something really cheap only to find they couldn't actually ride the thing without putting a lot more money into it than it is worth. That can be discouraging. These usually end up sitting in the corner of a garage forgotten or sold to the next person who has plans of fixing it.

There are those that have the experience to take a basket case and make a great running motorcycle out of it. Some are members here. One thing they have in common is that they already have a dependable motorcycle to ride when they want to ride.

As far as classic looking motorcycles, there are a few modern ones available. The Suzuki TU250 is a good example and makes a great motorcycle to learn to ride.
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,944 Posts
Fix me up.

It always depends on how capable you are.
A couple of years ago I bought an 83 XS400 Yamaha for $350- The condition of the motor was uncertain, so I bought another motor, $200-. The swing arm bushing was worn out and rusty. Very hard to find a shaft bushing, found in UK, $80- All the wheel bearings should be replaced on an old bike, and the front brake needed a kit, maybe $75- Had problems with the original air box so switched to pod filters. That required many jet changes to get them right. It is here that a lot of folks would run out of skill and or patience.
I put on two ammo cases and a rear box. This bike now runs real sweet and is a good ride. New tires will be put on for this winter. Total bill before the tires is about $1000.00

I mention the above to give you an idea of what might be involved. A newer bike might need less work.
A new chain, a battery, new bars, and a bunch of other stuff were also needed.

Some days it makes sense to get something that is already running okay.

Unkle Crusty*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
650 Posts
I had zero motorcycle experience before I got my license a couple years ago, but made the mistake, at least for me, of getting an 80s Honda. It was good in the sense that I didn't pay much for it and it was in decent shape, but did have a few things wrong with it that I had no idea how to fix and probably would have had to pay someone to fix. It was too heavy and powerful for someone new like me, so I sold it and got the TU250x, which I used in BRC. The TUX is a great little bike, not particularly fast, but still fun to ride. I'm guessing you can find a used one in the $2,000-3000 range if your budget allows. Good luck whatever you decide.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks of the advice!

Its true that the older bikes are quite slow and heavy.
I think that TU250 looks pretty so I will see if I can find an older model and pick that up!
thanks !

I have to say - usually people dream of motorcycles not only because its their passion but also because they're a poor student (like me) but I can get a perfectly running car for much less than a motorcycle

eitherway I need that bike!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,012 Posts
Thanks of the advice!

Its true that the older bikes are quite slow and heavy.
I think that TU250 looks pretty so I will see if I can find an older model and pick that up!
thanks !

I have to say - usually people dream of motorcycles not only because its their passion but also because they're a poor student (like me) but I can get a perfectly running car for much less than a motorcycle

eitherway I need that bike!
A few thoughts...

A year ago l was looking at bikes, and l was really open to different ideas. One of the bikes l found was an '85 Suzuki GS700. It was somewhat sporty, but had saddle bags as well, and was really pretty darn clean. The owner was in the Navy and was heading out on a ship, and had reduced it from $1400 down to $1000. According to the ad in Craigslist, it just needed new tires, the carbs cleaned and sync'd, and a new pice of glass for the little windshield. But when l did a little more research, that bike had 4 carbs, it was known to be a bitch to sync, and that little piece of glass was $139. My $1000 bike would have ended up being a $2000 bike before l even got it on the road.

If you do some homework and look around in your area to see what is in abundance, you can probably do okay. I am guessing you live in the midwest or back east, since you are worried about rust. We don't have rust problems out here on the west coast, so l can't speak to that. But l can tell you this...there are a lot more Suzukis and Hondas here than Kawasakis or Yamahas, so if l wanted to find a good project, l would look around on Craigslist and probably try to find a good deal on an older Honda, or maybe a Suzuki GS, because they are all over the place and l could get a parts bike easy. I am sure that with some elbow grease and a few hundred bucks l could get everything l needed, assuming l had the garage space needed.

A bike that is kind of cool is a Honda Ascot. It is a 500cc single, although l think the final year they came with a twin similar to what they put in a Shadow. In any case, the motor is the same motor that came in the XR500 and XL500 dirt/dual purpose bikes, so if you can find one with good body parts, most everything else is readily available. There are other bikes, though, that they only made for a couple of years and they are unique in some way or another, and those can be very hard to come by. So for your first bike, if you are going to go with an older project, l would suggest finding something that was in production for several years or more, and from a big name company.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,944 Posts
Beach Boys

The West Coast Girls, or something like that from the Beach Boys.
CA is much closer for us than the far East of Canada. Many from here winter in Mexico and drive.

Unkle Crusty*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Well then you shouldn't worry so much about rust. It is pretty easy to spot a bike that has been sitting outside
aha well that was only an issue with the idea of getting an older bike - west coast sure - no rust but in the bay area that is a hidden problem with a lot of cars that are sold closer to SF.
happens with bikes too. either way. ill be fine
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top