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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone, my name is Matthew. I've been looking at riding for about 2 years now, but still have not gotten a motorcycle. Just to give you an idea of what I plan to do/want out of a motorcycle, I plan to use it as a commuter to/from school, which is a pretty short distance. Some longer trips would also happen, 100-200 miles though. I'm 20 year old male in college, and really like the shadow look.

Anyway, the reason I'm on the honda shadow forum is that one of my good friends is selling a 1984 Honda shadow vt500, with 37k miles. He's done some work on it, replacing fork seals, oil, steering bearings, and turn signals. He good with bikes and I trust him. He selling it to me for $1000. What I wanted to ask though, do you think this is a good bike for me? Would the 500 be comfortable for slightly longer highway rides? Is this a good beginner bike? In terms of maintenance, is this bike good, and are there common problems these bikes have? Really, any input would be appreciated. Thanks.

Here are some pictures of the bike.
 

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It is a 30 year old bike. We've lots of members riding these old bikes. I'd personally look for something uh, younger.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
When you say younger is that because of style reasons? Or do you think it's just a bad idea to buy a bike that old?
 

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The older the bike, the more likely you will run into issues, the harder it is to find parts.. Style-Wise.. It's Rockin' :)

Oh, and Welcome to The Forum!
 

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Welcome to the Forum
The 500cc bike would probably be ok from a performance standpoint but it's 35+ years old. Repairing these old bikes can be costly and parts hard to source. Do you have a place and tools to work on it? For a college student commuting a few miles a smaller bike like a Rebel 250 would work great, but not so much for the long rides you mention.
You should take the basic motorcycle safety course, get your mc endorsement then test ride different size bikes to see which meets your needs.
 

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When you say younger is that because of style reasons? Or do you think it's just a bad idea to buy a bike that old?
The style is cool, but most folks here that have the 30 yr old bikes do a lot or most all of their own work on the bikes. And as mentioned, getting parts for the bike can be an problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have taken the MSF course and have my endorsement. I am worried about its age. I'm expecting to put a decent amount of money into the bike. The biggest draw here though is the price. As a college student, I really don't have too much money. Anyways, I'm gonna test ride it soon, and see how I like it. In the MSF course, I rode a kawasaki 125cc cruiser style bike, which I liked decently well. I've sat on some 250s (Suzuki gz, Honda cbr, kawasaki ninja). Size wise they all felt good, but I wasn't a big fan of the seating position on the ninja. By the way, I'm 5-8,and 145lbs, so pretty small.
 

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I have taken the MSF course and have my endorsement. I am worried about its age. I'm expecting to put a decent amount of money into the bike. The biggest draw here though is the price. As a college student, I really don't have too much money. Anyways, I'm gonna test ride it soon, and see how I like it. In the MSF course, I rode a kawasaki 125cc cruiser style bike, which I liked decently well. I've sat on some 250s (Suzuki gz, Honda cbr, kawasaki ninja). Size wise they all felt good, but I wasn't a big fan of the seating position on the ninja. By the way, I'm 5-8,and 145lbs, so pretty small.
I got my first bike this summer and just put it away for the winter. I got a 1998 1100 shadow spirit. I love the bike but I did find a few minor issues I had to figure out how to fix. If your only doing short trips I guess it would be ok, but If your planning on taking long highway cruises I would look for something newer and with a little more power. When I was looking for a bike it kinda seemed like 3000 bucks was about the amount you would have to spend to get a decent used bike that didn't need any tinkering.
 

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For a $1000 it's probably worth it if it runs well, if it's not running well walk away. Find out how old the battery is, how old the tires are and if they have tread left. The biggest problem you have with any bike is when it's been sitting and not being ridden.
 

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I think you should avoid it. Most likely, you'll buy it for 1000$ and put non stop money into it for all sorts of problems and like everyone else said, parts may be harder to find. You might even end up paying the same amount as a newer bike.
I got my 1100 Sabre for 3000$ And no problems *Knock on wood* so far!! I say hold off and get a newer bike.

Unless you're mechanically inclined and able to fix it all, that's a different story.
 
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