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Discussion Starter #1
Howdy everyone,

I've really enjoyed reading all of your post. I'm looking at getting my first cruiser this spring (Had a dual-sport and dirt bikes before this). I am seriously considering the Vulcan because they seem to be available. With that in mind, since you all know your stuff about this bike, maybe you could tell me if you think this ad has some potential. I found it in a local paper. I have a limit of about $3,000 (not including riding gear), but a less would always be nice. I'm 6'4" and 200 lbs. Am I too big for a Vulcan like this?

Description
1998 Kawasaki Vulcan 750, 31k mi,
excellent condition. Has been well
maintained and garaged, starts and
runs great. Shows very little wear
and almost looks new. Gets about 50mpg.
Extras: windshield, tank bag, gel seat
pad, 2 fullface helmets, HJC Chatterbox
with 2 headsets, Guardian cover. Has shaft drive
and hydraulic valve adjusters, so very
little maintenance. Pretty much just get
on and ride. $2700 OBO

So what do you guys think, worth a shot? Or should I just hold off?

Thanks,
Jarod

(first post) :rockon:
 

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Hey, I just bought my first Vulcan 750 from Craigslist. It was a '99 with 20K an regular and thorough maintenance. Windshield and sissy bar and a tank of gas. None of the extras. $2500. I'm finding that the maintenance is inevidable on these bikes. I scoured the earth for the last month and found that they generally sell for $2000 on average given all of the mileage. Seems like he marked near the blue book. Mileage can take a tole without proper maintenance. It's always nice to buy from a 1st owner who knows everything. Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sounds like a good idea. Do you think if I could get him to come down on the price some this would be an ok deal? How many miles can a 750 take, properly cared for? 31k is a bit higher than several bikes I've seen.

Thanks,
Jarod
 

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Drive less, ride more...
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1,114 Posts
Congratulations!!!

Your first choice in the cruiser world is a most excellent one.

No, you are not too big for this bike. This is one of the fastest/strongest bikes in its class--and stays with (or beats) bikes having twice the engine size.

As you have probably already seen, this bike comes tricked out with many features that you won't find on most other cruisers. I can point you to other cruisers of similar ilk that have them, but they are MUCH OLDER bikes.

Obviously I don't know how handy you are with a voltmeter, but you can read other threads here on how to test the charging system. You might do a test based on the info in these threads to see if the stator is performing as it should. Take a friend with you to work the throttle while you work the voltmeter. If the test does not go as it should, this of course is obviously an area of negotiation for you in the pricing!!!

In case you missed it, there is also a thread in the "Vulcan Verses" here on what to look for in a used VN750 (labelled "Used VN750 bike check").

Also, to check bike pricing (if you haven't already), visit kbb.com and look up the bike under the link for motorcycles.

BTW: others here have seen that, properly cared for, these bikes are good for over 100,000 miles.

Hope this helps!.....:D
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Thanks, that does help. I just wasn't sure about the Vulcan's longevity. If I can get him to come down a bit, maybe I'll be able to join your ranks before long. :motorcycl

You can always offer less and see if he bites. Never know how bad he needs the $$$.
I agree, with that in mind (and no pressure), but would anyone be willing to suggest what I should offer on a bike like this (or what you would, in my shoes)? That's considering everything checks out, of course.

Thanks,
Jarod
 

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85 VN 700
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1,033 Posts
First - as others have said - you aren't too big for the bike. I'm 6'3 (34 inseam, long torso) and feel like the bike was made for me. I'm a big boy too (260+/- 20 depending on season) and the bike hauls with me on it (mine's the 700 - so the 750 would be a lil more powerful) I have to keep an eye on the speedo - this bike LOVES 90.

As far as price - ask how firm the price is (the ad does say "obo"). If it's not they may offer a lower price, or ask you for an offer. I generally start at around 75% of the asking price (~2100 in this case) which of course gets rejected - but opens up the bargaining process. Definitely look up the trade in and retail value for the bike at kbb.com (kelly blue book) - it's nice to have that information available - can be a good bargaining tool.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Definitely look up the trade in and retail value for the bike at kbb.com (kelly blue book) - it's nice to have that information available - can be a good bargaining tool
I did look it up, and it seems to be coming out way lower than his asking price--right around $2000. Is that similar to a dealer trade-in value?

Maybe I should let this one pass by if he won't bargain very much...
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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With gas prices going up as they are, prices for used bikes can easily go above the blue book prices.

If the present owner knows nothing of the splines being lubed, or the condition of the stator, use that as your bargaining tools. Let them know stator or spline replacement can run up to $1000+ (when having a shop do it)

Have you seen the bike, or just found the ad for it so far?
 

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I'm not sure how the market is in your area, but in Houston the bikes generally are priced above market value. That said I picked up a 2000 VN 750 a couple of weeks ago with 17000 miles for $2000. I think that the price was partly influenced by the fact that I work with the previous owner. If the bike has been well maintained I wouldn't be too afraid of the mileage, I would rather buy a well maintained bike with 30k+ miles than a bike of the same age with 3000 miles. They're made to ride and if the bike is 10 yrs old, that's only 3k miles per year which isn't too bad (like I said, as long as the maintenance has been maintained).

I love my vulcan and am very pleased with my decision to buy one. I'm not as tall as you (I'm 5' 10"), but I tip the scales at around 250 and the bike has plenty of power. The best thing to do is go test sit the bike, if it feels good, use some of the info here as bargaining tools and see what you can come up with.

Good luck.
 

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Welcome to the site, and future Vulcan ownership! Sounds like you are on to one already. You can bet he knows what the blue book says about it. He may be trying to get something extra for all the add ons, but we all know you lose what you put into a vehicle when you sell it. I would have a serious talk about his maintenance though. If he's vague on that, either use that as a bargaining tool, or pass. Generally speaking, these bikes can go a long way with little maintenance, but if neglected, it can be expensive down the road. Splines should have been lubed at least 3 times on that mileage bike, and it's almost a sure bet they haven't. If they have lube, you're probably ok, but I'd certainly hang that in his face. Using a voltmeter to check the charging system is a great idea, and not a hard job. You do have to remove the seat, but that's two 10 mm bolts through the tool box behind the sissy bar. If it has a wet cell battery, see if it has leaked and corroded under and around the battery and near wiring etc. Does it have a drain tube still on it? We all replace the wet cell battery with a sealed maintenance free that eliminates that, but again, another bargaining bit. Good luck and keep us informed on your progress!
 

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Welcome to the forum, and +1 to what Fergy says above. A well maintained VN750 can last a looonnnggg time for sure, and they are great bikes, I owned one for almost 13 yrs. pretty much trouble-free.
 

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as everyone else said this bike is definetly not to small for you as it is one of the more higher sitting cruisers. price seems a bit inflated to me (although i'm no expert). it also seems that the seller is trying to increase the price wth all the optional accessories. you can try to explain to him that stuff like the helmets he offers have absolutley no resale value as they are individual item (you wouldn't use someone elses toothbrush, would you?). but then again if you don't plan on using chatterbox intercom (i assume it is not the CB unit because of 2 headsets) you could ebay it and get some of your investment back.

also, it never mentions condition of one of the most important parts for a new rider - tires! so you might have a bit negotiating room there too.

good luck
 

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Take 20 crisp 100 dollar bills and show them to the guy. He'll turn into a bowl of jello. Works every time.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Those are all very good suggestions! I'm glad I asked on here first, thanks guys. So to recap, I should be looking at the electrical condition and tires (Btw, how do you determine wear on a motorcycle tire? Just like on cars with the tread depth?) to see if there are any bargaining points. I'll also try to reason with him about the accessories, because honestly, I don't really need the helmets or communicators.

Much appreciated and I'll keep you posted,
Jarod
 

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on every tire there are usage indicator marks. you can take a look at those. but even if the surface is not worn there can be some other stuff that will demand replacement for example small cracks on the walls/surface or dry rot. also the material of a tire overtime inevitably looses some of it properties, mainly it hardens reducing the traction with the road. if the tires are not brand new it can provide you with another item to help reduce the price.

actually you do need helmet (just IMO,your head - your choice) but you need your personal helmet. the foam inside will shape conforming to wearers head achieving maximum protection and comfort. plus there is no way to know what really happened to the helmets he offers.
 
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