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Old 06-21-2011, 03:54 PM   #1
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Question things to look for when buying your first machine

alright guys, after pining over numerous articles and posts here and across the interwebs its time for me to seriously start looking for a bike. I think primarily i'm going to look for a ninja 250r (preferably 08 or later as i like that style better OR maybe an sv650).

my question(s) is this - what all should i look for?

i realize this is a ridiculously broad question, but i mean what kind of things should i keep my eye open for? i have bought used cars before but nothing in the world of motorcycling. i want to make sure i'm not getting "lemon" or a bike that will fall apart on me my first week riding it.

i'm looking for any suggestions you all have. thanks, and i really appreciate all the knowledge that is shared on here. i can tell i will frequent it quite ofter.
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Old 06-21-2011, 05:09 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by tek4 View Post
i want to make sure i'm not getting "lemon" or a bike that will fall apart on me my first week riding it.
Unfortunately there is no way to make "sure" that doesn't happen.

A bike that looks clean and starts good cold and runs good is probably gonna be OK. Having maintenance records is a plus.

Avoid any used bikes where the owner says "It only needs......"
If that is true, you should have DONE it already.

Also avoid one that has a LOT of "cuts and bruises".
A little scrape here and there is not bad but lots of the probably means abuse.
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Old 06-21-2011, 05:28 PM   #3
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I hope it will help you.

Used Motorcycle Evaluation Guide

Also, if you do decide to go with ninja250, you want to check this website as well:

What do I need to know about buying a used bike? - Ninja250Wiki

Category:New Riders - Ninja250Wiki
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Old 06-22-2011, 10:11 AM   #4
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No or minimal damage, clean paperwork, look at routine maintenance items like the chain, is it oily and fairly tight or slack, dry and rusty looking, is the oil level within the sight glass? color won't tell you much but lighter is better, do the tires look like they have enough air in them? The bike should start up and run smoothly with no weird knocks or ticks.

Simple things like that will tell you a lot, the bike doesn't have to be spotless, in fact a few miles worth of road dirt will allow any oil leaks to be apparent and show the bike gets ridden. I think you're on the right track with the 250 Ninja, it's a good bike to start on. Just use common sense and your own judgment in choosing a bike, remember they made thousands of them, don't get rushed into buying one you if you have a bad feeling about it, there's plenty out there.
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Old 06-22-2011, 11:47 AM   #5
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I've always thought that the external condition of a motorcycle is a good indicator of it's internal condition. A bike that's rusted, scratched, has faded paint, etc. is probably a bike that's had it's maintenance neglected. That's not to say that EVERY shiny clean bike has been maintained, but it's more likely.
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Old 06-22-2011, 02:00 PM   #6
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I like to have a bike with some miles on it. If it has been sitting for long periods without running then that is a problem for the 250.
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