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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone! This is my first post in this forum. I was a daily biking-commuter in india ( Royal Enfield Thunderbird! 350cc) and have logged about 7000 miles on my bike back in India.

I've been in Cincinnati for 2 years now, and I realized I missed riding motorcycles! I've taken my Ohio Licence & am looking forward to getting my first US Bike! And I love the VN 750! Its a beautiful bike, great seat height, and an advanced machine compared to other Cruisers in its class.

I have shortlisted a used 1989 VN 750 in a nearby showroom, that seems to be quite new & in good shape (6000 original miles, asking price $2,199)

I am really not good at judging the bike's value/price since its a completely different bike from what I'm used to. I thought it best to ask this question in an experienced forum, and that's how I found vn750.com!

1) Is $2200 a fair price for a 1989 VN750 bike, 6000 miles ?
2) Do I need to know anything before hand, or look out for something in particular?
3) Is it very safe to buy from motorcycle dealerships? Should I spend more time on Craigslist to find private sellers?
4) Is 1989 too old a bike to be used stock? Should I invest in a more recent, say 1998 bike?

I know this is a lot of unformatted thoughts, kindly pardon my ignorance on the bike. I would really appreciate any advice/word of caution you could give!

Thank you all in advance!

Sincerely,
Vishnu


PS : Pictures of my 350cc baby back home in India! :):) I miss her a lot. Royal Enfield Thunderbird.



 

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ass hole extaordinaire
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these bikes were virtually unchanged from 86 to 06 so if you find an older one that is in decent shape you can usually get it cheaper than the newer ones and they run and ride the same i have an 86 that i have been riding for about 2 years and i love it i do all my repairs myself and most of the bike is now 96 and newer as far as parts go

i would say an 89 for 2200 is almost too good of a deal from a dealer you might want to ask for some background info on the bike and make sure it is reliable but if you just have to have that one it is a nice price and we here on vn750.com can help you with just about any aspect of repairs to this bike
 

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Chasin' the blacktop
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The age wouldn't scare me a bit. The primary worry with any year VN bike would be the stator being bad although the '85 and '86 stators seem to be better quality than the later bikes. Replacing the stator is a lot of work on this bike. The balencers (deep inside the engine) could also be a concern but generally a '86 is as reliable as a '06.

Take a voltage meter and with the seat off crank her up and test the voltage at 3000 rpm. If it is under 13.5v pass on the bike. No guarantees on any used bike but if the stator shows good you've eliminated the major potential problem on the bike.

I would also feel better if with the bike on the center stand and you off it rev it up to 2500 and then 5000 rpm. it should vibrate some but if it vibrates so badly that it moves around the floor the balencers may be bad. With the bike obviously sitting so long (6000 mi in 27 years) the rubber balencers inside the engine could have dried out and cracked but at least you'll know they are still basically good.

$2200,,, I'd offer $1800 and be happy at $2000. $2200 isn't bad, especially if they'll give you a 15 day warrenty on the engine (engine/ stator only, the rest of these bikes is pretty solid) or the bike has a few extras like a luggage rack, windsheild, or saddlebags.

I paid $2700 for my '03 with 3000 miles and it is basically the same bike with the same potential problems. I love my VN750.
 

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Seems high to me for the age, even with the miles (that's a lot of sitting around in 25 years). Craigslist here has an '03 with bags and a windshield for $2000, down from $2500. I forget the miles on it, but something around 12k, I think.

You'll always pay more at a dealer, cars or bikes.
 

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Chasin' the blacktop
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Visnuns, Gotta quick question. From what I understand all new members must post at least 5 times before they can add a picture. Your profile shows that this is your 1st post. How did you get around that requirement?
 

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'03 VN750 "Rosie"
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I think I paid $2,400 for my '03 with 9,000 miles on it. I think they are asking a lot for a bike from the 80s or early 90s. Engine wear due to mileage is only one factor. I would be concerned about rust, frozen bolts, brittle wiring, gaskets, plastics, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Visnuns, Gotta quick question. From what I understand all new members must post at least 5 times before they can add a picture. Your profile shows that this is your 1st post. How did you get around that requirement?
Hi!

I did not circumvent the 5 post requirement! It said I could not post links/urls before 5 posts, but there was no restriction on the image embedding! :) Its kinda geeky awesome you'd ask that, thank you!

Wow, this is very humbling, thank you for the responses. I will definitely remember to take a voltmeter test this out.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I think I paid $2,400 for my '03 with 9,000 miles on it. I think they are asking a lot for a bike from the 80s or early 90s. Engine wear due to mileage is only one factor. I would be concerned about rust, frozen bolts, brittle wiring, gaskets, plastics, etc.
Ok I'll definitely look out for the signs of rust/etc. But is it expected that the dealer would take care/repair all pending issues before they sell a bike?

Should we treat a dealer sale the same way you would a private seller? The dealer probably knows more about the bike compared to me :(
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
these bikes were virtually unchanged from 86 to 06 so if you find an older one that is in decent shape you can usually get it cheaper than the newer ones and they run and ride the same i have an 86 that i have been riding for about 2 years and i love it i do all my repairs myself and most of the bike is now 96 and newer as far as parts go

i would say an 89 for 2200 is almost too good of a deal from a dealer you might want to ask for some background info on the bike and make sure it is reliable but if you just have to have that one it is a nice price and we here on vn750.com can help you with just about any aspect of repairs to this bike
Thank you, I really appreciate all the suggestions. It is honestly quite imposing, having to buy a motorcycle used!

PS : My post with links included is awaiting moderator review. I hope its posted pretty soon.

Link -> http://www.hondaofflorence.com/pre_...880304X1K27K2014J8I54I48JPMQ858R0&veh=3466475

Image -->
 

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Being an '89 with those miles, I would check the date code on those tires.

The dealer probably took that as a trade-in and has next to nothing in it. I would start at $1000 and walk at $1500, dealer or not. You might look at KBB or NADA and see what the retail is on an '89 model. The 2003 was about that same price in retail book value, in 2012.

Looks to be in good shape cosmetically, with a $100 crashbar.
 

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Just a regular guy
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Never pay what a dealer is asking. It is like a bazzarr in India, they price it with room to come down. I would say for a bike that age $1500 would be a deal, but that really depends on area.

Ask if they lubed the splines... if they hesitate at all make them do it.
 

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Sparky!!!
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Just remember, you are in Cincinnati, and the dealership will get close to what they are asking for the bike, just because they have such a huge population.

I would be more wary of buying from a dealership than from a private individual. The dealership is only going to detail the bike, and fix the most obvious imperfections.For instance, I just bought a 2000 Dodge Ram with a little over 160,000 miles last year. the dealership was asking $6,000 for it. The truck looked really nice, but I noticed that the rear main seal had been leaking at one point in time, the AC didn't work, and some shady wiring had been done in the cab. I brought all of this to the table when we started negotiating. I offered $4,000 for the truck, flashed the cash, and they laughed at me. I asked them how much their shop would charge me to fix the problems I had found. So the salesman contacted the customer service manager who called the shop foreman, and come to find out it was going to cost about $3,000 for the shop to fix everything I had found wrong. I told them I would take the truck at their asking price IF every thing I found was fixed, with documentation and pictures of everything getting repaired, or I would take the truck as is for 4 grand. They let me have the truck for 4 grand. I only spent about 100 bucks fixing everything my self.
 

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2014 KLR 650!
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Just remember, you are in Cincinnati, and the dealership will get close to what they are asking for the bike, just because they have such a huge population.

I would be more wary of buying from a dealership than from a private individual. The dealership is only going to detail the bike, and fix the most obvious imperfections.For instance, I just bought a 2000 Dodge Ram with a little over 160,000 miles last year. the dealership was asking $6,000 for it. The truck looked really nice, but I noticed that the rear main seal had been leaking at one point in time, the AC didn't work, and some shady wiring had been done in the cab. I brought all of this to the table when we started negotiating. I offered $4,000 for the truck, flashed the cash, and they laughed at me. I asked them how much their shop would charge me to fix the problems I had found. So the salesman contacted the customer service manager who called the shop foreman, and come to find out it was going to cost about $3,000 for the shop to fix everything I had found wrong. I told them I would take the truck at their asking price IF every thing I found was fixed, with documentation and pictures of everything getting repaired, or I would take the truck as is for 4 grand. They let me have the truck for 4 grand. I only spent about 100 bucks fixing everything my self.

If you can't walk away, you have no position in the negotiation. $2000 for an '89 is too much. Let some other sucker pay that. There will be other bikes for sale. I would tend to doubt the 6000 mile figure. I've put 4000 on mine since June. Unless it was owned my nads that were afraid to drive it then not sure how you can only have 6000 on a 25 year old bike.
 

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FREEBIRDS MC CENTRAL NY
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Discussion Starter #20
Just remember, you are in Cincinnati, and the dealership will get close to what they are asking for the bike, just because they have such a huge population.

I would be more wary of buying from a dealership than from a private individual. The dealership is only going to detail the bike, and fix the most obvious imperfections.For instance, I just bought a 2000 Dodge Ram with a little over 160,000 miles last year. the dealership was asking $6,000 for it. The truck looked really nice, but I noticed that the rear main seal had been leaking at one point in time, the AC didn't work, and some shady wiring had been done in the cab. I brought all of this to the table when we started negotiating. I offered $4,000 for the truck, flashed the cash, and they laughed at me. I asked them how much their shop would charge me to fix the problems I had found. So the salesman contacted the customer service manager who called the shop foreman, and come to find out it was going to cost about $3,000 for the shop to fix everything I had found wrong. I told them I would take the truck at their asking price IF every thing I found was fixed, with documentation and pictures of everything getting repaired, or I would take the truck as is for 4 grand. They let me have the truck for 4 grand. I only spent about 100 bucks fixing everything my self.
Thank you Slimvulcanrider, that is a very good template for approaching the dealer. I will make a list of things to check out on the bike (Tires, brakes, frame, rusting, voltage on the batterty etc) and take a similar route on the bike price. Start at $1,000 & walk away at anything above $1,500.

The NADA guide for a very good 1989 VN 750 is $1,300. For a good one, its $800.
 
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