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Discussion Starter #1
I did read the thread in regards to the list of what to look for when buying a used bike. Most of those suggestions I noticed was when you were looking at bikes through a private seller or on craigslist. What about looking at used bikes through a dealer?

I am currently interested in an 11' Honda Shadow Aero with all the toys and only 2100K. It was a trade at a Harley dealer so of course, I cannot ask the original owner any questions. When I called about the bike, they seemed totally honest with me and said that they do not know all of the in's and out's and usually do not ask any of those questions. All they know is that there is a trade and they sold a new bike. They also specialize in Harley's and not metrics. By the look of the advertisement on their website, it looks like a good bike, but, the dealer is about an hour away in another state (NJ). I am also concerned because to my knowledge, the 2011 Aero only came in one color and that was a Candy Apple Red. This bike is white. Therefore, then the questions arise as to if it is original paint and I might be wrong about the available color schemes? If it was repainted, why? Accident? Drop? Last owner just wanted another color?

The above questions, I guess, will never be available for me to ask because it was a trade-in to the dealer. Any/all advice is appreciated.

P.S. Once I hit 15 posts, I will try to post the link to the bike online.
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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over the years, I've bought bikes and other vehicles both from dealers and private parties and can't say one was better than the other. By exercising due diligence (which you obviously are), one can get a good deal from either source.

It does surprise me the dealer claims no background knowledge on the Honda. I bought my current bike (used) from a dealer and he was able to supply considerable detail about the previous owner and even gave me their contact information so I could talk to them. I've had car and truck dealers do the same, so it might be a red flag that they don't want to disclose the Honda's previous history.
 

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Troublemaker
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You should get the title with the old owners name and address unless you finance it. All you have to do is look up the number if they are listed, if not, send them a note with your name and number and they will be more than likely happy to tell you everything good about the bike.
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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A prospective buyer doesn't get the title until after they buy, so it won't help in deciding whether to buy. (Unless the dealership would at least give out the contact information on the title.) It would be worth asking at least.
 

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Troublemaker
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I always have the dealer contact the previous owner to see if they will talk to me, but then I have a dealer that cares about keeping their name pure. I always allow them to give my contact information on bikes I trade in if they are asked for it. I usually buy from a dealer anyway, it allows me to get an RPMOne warranty on the bike for two years, and I very seldom keep one any longer than that. Doubt I could ever get that from a private sale.
 

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Very Famous Person
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On one hand, if you buy from a private seller, you can ask him all kinds of questions about the bike, but that doesn't mean he has told you everything and is 100% accurate. What I like to do as I feel it tells me more, is to observe where the person lives and how they take care of their yard, autos, garage, etc. If everything about them is junk, then why would the bike have been cared for? And vice-versa.

The dealer can only ask the same questions to the original owner, so he doesn't really know how the bike was handled either. Plus, he probably has never even seen the private life of the owner. But the difference with the dealer is that he can give you a warranty while the owner won't.

In either case, I would want to have a mechanic familiar with that kind of bike to check it over and ride it and use that as a judgement call on whether or not to purchase it unless you are pretty good at evaluating the bike yourself.

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The 43rd Poser
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First, ease off on the fonts, some of us old guys who aren't teenage girls have a hard time reading it, and don't care how cute you are.

Second, 2100k is 2,100,000 miles, I'd find another.

Third, if they told you to "not ask any of those questions" I'd keep looking.
 

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With only 2K miles, I wouldn't think much could be wrong with it. Who ever owned it sure didn't ride it.

With it being a trade in at an HD dealer I have my theory as to why.

I am no expert but it looks repainted to me, but that may have just been the guys choice. Maybe he tried to mask the fact it was a Honda, I know folks like that.

If that's a price you are happy with, I don't see any show stoppers.

Dealers get a lot of phone calls. If you show up and talk to a salesman you may find they know more about the bike than they talk about on the phone.
 

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At first I was thinking 5k is too much, but considering windshield, driving lights, sissy bar, saddlebag supports.....would be over 1k

aftermarket exhaust, crash bars......

I think the price is good, you could probably get it down a little.
Go there and check it out.
 
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Yea, the bike has been repainted but as a member posted they may have tried to cover up that it was a Honda. Considering all the add-ons, mileage, and money put in to it my only concern would be the quality of the paint job, and price. The price seems a little high to me because it is a 750.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Went to a triumph demo today and wow..those are really nice bikes! I took the Triumph America out for a test ride and liked it but did not like the fact that it was chain. The exhaust was nice with a low, throaty rumble and I was impressed with it being stock.

In the meantime, I plan on taking the trip to NJ tomorrow to look at the Honda Shadow I posted earlier in this thread. I have never been to this dealer but have heard it is large and always has between 50-100 used bikes in stock. Additional info. I was given, as far as what to look for, was to get down and just look over the bike. Show that you know what your looking for, get under and look and feel underneath before, as well as after, the test ride. Don't ride the bike like a it's grandma's but the opposite. Get it hot and get on it. When ya come back, let it rest for a bit and again, check under and look for leaks or anything unusual. Of course, this is in addition to checking the forks, gas, fluids, rust, etc. I will also be checking the handlebars like someone mentioned in the "checklist" sticky (if they touch the tank or look uneven usually means it was in an accident).

Happy Memorial Day & I will check back in to let ya know how it went!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Don't try to look like you know something that you don't.
I'm sure that the bike will tell me or "show me" if anything substantial is wrong with it. Also, an extended warranty sounds appealing, but, would do me no good since I am in PA and they are in NJ; Unless it is a manufacturers warranty, whereas I have a Honda dealer down the street.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Well, the only thing that I was impressed with was the large selection of both new and used bikes this dealer has as well as it's size. Two huge buildings; one was the main showroom and the other was filled with just used trade-in's. I can honestly say that this was the largest HD dealer I have ever visited. Other than that, I was disappointed in everything else (sales staff, customer service, etc.). The bike was in horrible condition and hard to believe that it only had 2k miles on it. I do not know if that is even correct although that is what they are advertising. Rust was all over the bike from the bottom of the frame where the crash bars were to the top part of the chrome turn signals. My old man, who I have said before has no interest and doesn't know much about bikes, went with me. He might not know about bikes, but he does work with metal and knows his stuff. The rust was not just surface, but pitted. Paint job was ok with the exception of a ton of scrapes near the battery box. Very disappointing.

I did, however, have a nice conversation with on of the sales girls in the motor clothes dept. and told her of my experience. She almost drug me up to the sales manager to let them know of my bad experience. Even the sales manager seemed like he didn't want any part of it. He obliged and got the original sales person who told me about the bike on the phone. He did nothing other than take my name and info, in case they get similar trades in and was persistent in trying to get me to buy a Harley. After all that hassle, I asked him maybe I can at least get a T-shirt for my troubles. He never answered me so I took it upon myself to go back to the motor clothes dept, grab a shirt, give it to the sales gal and told her that they told me it was for free. I walked out the door never looking back.
 

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I have never bought a bike from a dealer, so my opinion is biased. Personally, l don't see any reason to pay extra for a used bike. If you look around at used bikes and read lots of Craigslist ads, you start to get a feel for whether or not the seller is legit. I don't give the time of day to a bike that has a salvage title, no matter how minimal the seller claims the damage was. The bike will be difficult to sell down the road. I am also not interested in a bike where the seller minimizes damage a lot. An honest seller just says, "The bike was dropped on its left side, it still runs fine, see pictures." If the seller goes on an on about something, that suggests guilt to me.
 
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