Adrenalin! Every motorcycle riders’ drug. The rush of speed on the open road. Opening the throttle on the straight. Reaching speeds you know you shouldn’t be doing. Taking corners at the exact right lean. Pulse racing, heart pumping, palms sweating. Every sense at its ultimate limit. That, for me is what riding is all about. It bit me at the tender age of 15 and now 40 years later, I still get excited at the prospect.
But I have found a new rush . . . . . Purchasing bikes online. Online auctioning sites allow you the heated rush and elevated heartbeat almost as intense as the wide-open road. The final 30 seconds of an auction closing can bring you to heights of elation or depths of disappointment. The Internet has made purchasing your dream bike easy. Or if you’re like me that enjoy a good challenge, you can find really good deals on fixer upper bikes. But don’t go into this endeavor blind. The Internet is notorious for scams and purchasing a bike online is not exempt from this despicable crime. Do your due diligence and research. The extra investigation can save you a lot of money, aggravation and ultimately get you a bike that will bring you years of enjoyment. Here are a few tips I have for you when buying online:
- eBay, is an auction site. Once you win the auction, you are obligated to complete the transaction, so be prepared to follow through.
- Pay close attention to any shipping fees, they are not usually included in the sale of the bike.
- Motorcycle shipping is a big industry. I recommend shipping bikes in enclosed carriers on a pallet. Always insure the bike with the shipping company.
- Ask lots of questions about the item before you place a bid. The owners are usually very quick to get back.
- If using an auction site, do not bid with your emotions. Do not exceed your limit, no matter how nice you believe the bike is.
- Always research bike values first by using Kelly Blue Book or the NADA guide. You can find their information on-line or at your local library for free.
- Never pay above blue book.
- Always get a pre-purchase inspection done. There are a lot of services out there that offer a very thorough, non-biased inspection. It’s worth the extra dollars in the long run.
- Payment can sometime be tricky. If the seller wants you to wire full payment directly to him, there’s something fishy. Use E-Bay’s payment service or use an online escrow company. This ensures you get your bike.
- Always check the sellers’ ratings and feedbacks. You should never purchase from anyone with less than a four star rating.
- Get a bigger down payment and sell as much stuff as you can. If you’re in San Diego, there’s a big pawn shop San Diego residents have been using for many years. Go to them with ipads, smartphones, computers and convert it into cash.
Of course the thrill of the online purchase, is not really as exciting as hitting the road, but it has opened a whole new world of motorcycle purchases for me. I am not limited to my direct surroundings for purchases. I can buy bikes from anywhere in the world. And I have to tell you, when I get the call from the motorcycle shipping company wanting to make arrangements for delivery, it’s like the day before Christmas for me.
Happy Riding, Happy Bidding and Happy Trails.