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I'm a new rider, and looking to get my first bike used. I've been checking out cycletrader.com and craigslist.com for used bikes, but am unsure about how to proceed. Many of the sellers request that you come with cash in hand...something I'm leery about doing after hearing a lot of crazy stories about people being robbed or worse. I also heard from my Motorcycle safe rider course instructor that you should NEVER go to meet a seller with cash in hand. Also, how do I set up having the seller bring the bike to a mechanic (of my choice) to check it out? I'm a bit lost here. Any and all tips for used bike purchasing from online is greatly appreciated! Thanks folks!
 

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I would suggest checking out the bike first and bring a friend who has mechanical cycle experience or at least owns one to help look it over and add a bit of security. Bring along a small amount of cash, $50 maybe to offer as a down payment if the bike is as described and the seller shows you the title and it has no liens against it. Don't forget to take the bike out for a test drive. Remember an honest seller is just as leary about you as you are about him.
 

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Welcome to the Forum, Spidey!

...Well.. Just like anything you do face-to-face, there will be a little bit of afforded trust from the get-go from both parties..

Me? .. I'd call the guy, tell him you want to look at the bike first, when you get out there, ask about maintenance records..

If you like what you see, have a friend drive you back to the dude's cave with cash in your pocket, tell the guy he can hold the money while you test ride the bike, but if you don't like the bike you will want the money back, but if you drop the bike, then the sale is final.

Doing that-lot you will find out if there really is a bike..

You should be able to see maintenance records which proves it was taken care of..

You will be able to see the condition of the bike and will also likely be able to test ride the thing..

... And ...having somebody who knows the Kung-Fu with you while you carrying and dealing with the cash guarantees fair-play! ;)
 

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How much are you looking to spend?
 

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The people wanting cash in hand to test ride don't want you to either drive off and not come back or lay the bike over, come back, not buy, and try and walk away without paying for damages.

If the seller doesn't believe you have a way to pay for the bike or you are new to bikes they are less likely to let you test ride.

They should be able to let you sit for fit, hear it run, and they should be willing to drive up and down the street a couple times to show it runs and shifts.

If the owner will not ride they should either trailer the bike or ride it to the shop for you. If they wont do it unless you want them to do it on a 20 degree day with a foot of snow, run away they are probably trying to hide known problems.

I have never left money in hand before any purchase, but any bike I went and test road I had a way to pay for. I have shown my endorsement on my license before.

I have never bought a bike without a test ride first.
 

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Check out the local dealers for used bikes. They are less likely to sell a bad bike. Find one that you like and fits you. Being a new rider you might not be allowed a test ride. Do not buy it on site, go home and check blue book price. Winter is a good time to negotiate the price, slow sales so they might be more receptive to accept a lower price.

Just take your time and find what you want. Good luck and welcome to the forum.
 

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Repeat....VStar 1300. Decent / low miles for $4500-$6000, depending on year and accessories. (Touring model +$)
 
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