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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been looking at LOTS of ads and bikes for 6 months or more. I Finally found one that (pretty much) checks the boxes! I took the wife out to see it and she actually likes it:oops:?! That is a first! And that is a huge reason why I am considering it.

I joined forum last summer, and have a 1st thread in "introduce yourself". I said I live in North Carolina, and my primary goal/hope is riding the Blue ridge parkway and some of the other mountain roads (WITH THE WIFE. That is an important part of it!). Wife had been cold about it and hoping I will get past this. But 12/26 she went with me and looked, and now she is actually talking with me about riding. That is a huge step forward. So please keep that in mind and don't beat me up too bad about the model I am considering. Please focus mainly on the specifics of this particular bike/ deal/ dealership. That's the most important advice I need right now!

I am considering a 2007 Honda Goldwing GL 1800. I found one with just over 100k miles at a fair price at a dealership. The most important /hardest thing to find is that is this one has ABS. It is priced such that If I decide to sell I feel I could do so with minimal loss (assuming no hidden problems). The dealer took it in trade and I think they just want it gone. Cosmetically is ok but shows some age/ wear. Not bad, but they didn't make any effort to "clean it up". Fine by me.

Problem: dealership policy is "no test rides". I don't feel competent doing a test drive, but I have several friends (very experienced riders- and all have talked to me about buying a Gold Wing and have "endorsed" my plan) who have offered to do the TR for me- but cannot.

I specifically have looked for a bike like this. I want a "high mileage" GW with anti-lock brakes. And prior owners added some nice accessories that make this a nice bike. But doggone! It's a lot of $$ to buy without TR. All the threads I read say GWs go forever... but...

Right now I'm thinking draw the line in the sand that someone from dealer needs to take me (as passenger) out on it. I'm not thrilled riding with someone I don't know, but that's the best I can come up with...

One of my friends (solid HD fan) has no problem with me buying a GW but insists I should walk from any place that doesn't allow TR. Well, that's pretty much every Japanese make dealer in area.☹. HD dealers much better about test drive but I haven't found one with a used GW ( Well, one in Pittsburgh PA area).

RECAP: I would like comments about buying high mile GW without test drive. Thanks.
 

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My response to "No test rides," is, "No sale to me, then. Goodbye."

My suggestion -- keep looking. You'll find a Goldwing with fewer miles and likely at a better price from a private seller -- and if you show up with cash in hand, odds are a private seller will have no problem allowing a test ride. Check local trader magazines and Craigslist -- you'll find oodles of Goldwings in NC.
 

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No test ride = no sale. That's a dealership I'd never buy a bike from. I wouldn't accept a ride on the back either. No way I'd trust my life to someone I dont know. I don't know your budget, but there are a ton of nice used touring bikes for sale.



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I won't say just where to fit in this idea, but an alternative to a test ride is to have the dealer's GoldWing mechanic ride the bike and make extensive comments about its condition and any possible areas of concern. Show this list to several experience GW riders and get their comments. If it passes their muster, then offer to buy it from the dealer with a one year warranty on anything other than tires and normal maintenance. If they won't do that, then walk. The test ride by you would be somewhat meaningless anyway unless you know what to look for so you're not losing anything by not riding it yourself.

This is, of course, if you think you are capable of handling the GW. It is a big bike and not one I would recommend for someone new at riding. For example, you could do all the same touring with something like a smaller 1100-1600 cc cruiser, but would have a ride probably easier to handle.

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thank you; I appreciate the replies. Yes, there are fair # of gold wings for sale (fewer ads this month- I think folks have stored them for the winter). But with ABS it is typically 2-3k more. which pushes it out of "1st bike" budget.

I used the search function here and found a post by vito:

"I've heard of giving a written "30 minute return for full price, no questions asked, bike must be in same condition when returned" agreement. The buyer pays for the bike, is given the keys and title, and the seller waits 30 minutes. If the buyer does not return in 30 minutes, the deal is done. If they return in 30 minutes or less, the seller returns the cash and the buyer gives the bike back to the seller. Thirty minutes is easily enough time to assess if you like the bike and if anything is seriously wrong with it."

That is (small) step up from riding from riding with someone. I am anal enough to make that happen. But not thrilled with that path...
not good odds of a deal right now...
 

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thank you; I appreciate the replies. Yes, there are fair # of gold wings for sale (fewer ads this month- I think folks have stored them for the winter). But with ABS it is typically 2-3k more. which pushes it out of "1st bike" budget.

I used the search function here and found a post by vito:

"I've heard of giving a written "30 minute return for full price, no questions asked, bike must be in same condition when returned" agreement. The buyer pays for the bike, is given the keys and title, and the seller waits 30 minutes. If the buyer does not return in 30 minutes, the deal is done. If they return in 30 minutes or less, the seller returns the cash and the buyer gives the bike back to the seller. Thirty minutes is easily enough time to assess if you like the bike and if anything is seriously wrong with it."

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On the idea of importance of ABS, yes, it's nice but one can ride fine without it if knowledgable and self-disciplined to follow the proper procedures of how to use front and rear brakes. This is just part of the full range of riding with your eyes open and your mind in gear.

As to the 30 minute return idea, that's full of holes. Who's to say that scratch wasn't there before the ride? Who's to say the seat had no scrapes on it? Who's to say the clutch wasn't working right before the trial ride? I would not engage in that type of contest.

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Are you currently riding and if so what, or would this be a first bike? It just isn't clear to me where you are as a rider. As far as the bike goes and a test ride, exactly what would you be looking for in a test ride? Would you be satisfied for someone at the dealership to ride it with you following in your car or on your bike if you have one?
 

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Swamp Rat Rider
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If have been approved for the Purchase whether Finance or Cash and they don't offer a test ride , I'm gone .. I can understand No Test Ride if just a tire kicker, but not giving my money without a test ride when have shown I am a serious buyer .. That Simple ..
 

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Personally, I wouldn't see a lack of ABS as a deal breaker. It's a nice feature to have in certain situations, yes, but if you're riding properly it will virtually never come in to play. A 2-3 thousand dollar difference in price is utterly absurd. Even in brand-new bikes with ABS as an option, the price difference is typically under $1000 --- more like $5-700..
 

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I've found the price difference for ABS to be zero on a used bike. Keep looking.


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Rereading the original post: will this be your first bike? Have you ever ridden? If you don't already ride and have a fair amount of skill, a Goldwing isn't going to be easy to learn to ride. In fact, it's dangerous. Buy something else that is significantly smaller and lighter to learn on. You can sell it after a year or so, probably not lose anything, and then buy the used Goldwing.

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On The Road Again!
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No Test Ride is not good.
The good news is....
100K on a 1800 Goldwing is nothing. Barely broken in.
My '99 1500 Goldwing is just about to turn 100 thousand
and it's still like brand new.
There is a guy named Phil Steiner in Ohio who has
driven TWO of the 1800s to over 500,000 miles EACH!
 

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That mileage, on a properly maintained Goldwing, wouldn't bother me, too much. The Goldwing is a very good, reliable motorcycle. I've had 4 of them. But like any other bike, they can have problems too.

I think a lot of the problem here is no one knows how much riding experience you have. No one, I believe, would recommend a Goldwing as a beginner's bike. And if that is the case, I understand the dealers point in not allowing a test ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Are you currently riding and if so what, or would this be a first bike? It just isn't clear to me where you are as a rider. As far as the bike goes and a test ride, exactly what would you be looking for in a test ride? Would you be satisfied for someone at the dealership to ride it with you following in your car or on your bike if you have one?
What I really want is for one of my experienced friends to take it out/check it out. I have bought other things on others recommendations...

I really don't want to detour the discussion, so let me just say- THE GW is only bike wife has liked. That trumps pretty much all. Choose battles. I am not having the discussion here. I have had it at length and in detail with close friends. Know you don't know (and won't know) all details. Please.
 

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I have pretty much wasted large part of the day surfing the 'net and looking at bikes for sale. The more I look the less I can fathom buying w/out a test ride. I think this bike (actually dealer) is scratched off list.
Thanks for replies...
Looking for bikes to buy is never a waste of time...in fact, it's how I spend a large portion of my time

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"No Test Ride" on a 13 year old bike with 100k miles? LOL! They're nuts!

Ok, then, offer them the salvage value of the bike....$250....I'll bet that's what they gave for the trade.
If they so no, offer what you're willing to lose should the bike be a turd...if you have to pay for repairs, it will get expensive fast...

Absolutely NO WAY I pay more than $1000 for a bike I can't ride as long as it starts and sounds ok...if it won't start, price is $250 cash.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thank you hogcowboy!!! Mission accomplished!!

I went back to that dealership and just couldn’t even enjoy looking at anything. Stick a fork in in...

Good news I think. Saturday AM ( if no rain) I am to go test drive a bike ?. Someone traded in a chromed up Yamaha cruiser for a HD. Price is very fair... only 1 problem....?☹?

Have y’all decided I am a half bubble off plumb yet? For those few that are not totally convinced yet, this should convince you... I need to find a quiet exhaust for it!??. I cannot handle straight pipes. No baffles in this at all?

Other than that it’s fine. Old (2003) but fine. Just about everything possible chromed and full set of hard bags (not correct term. Is “panniers” correct ?) and pizza box. ?hoping wife will try it. Did I mention price was fair?!?

I looked on net quite a while for exhausts. I couldn’t find ANYTHING WITH THE WORDS “QUIET” & “EXHAUST” on the same page??.

Hope springs eternal. If that is worst problem with it I will buy it store it (it IS ? WINTER!!) and start running ads on forums and Craigslist. Someone has a factory exhaust in the garage.

Yes- not quite normal!

Time for bed- thank you all and good night!
 
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