Discussion in 'transport' started by RubyToogood, Apr 10, 2009.
Less so than when I started this thread as that was over a year ago and I've been saving.
Italian bikes aren't renowned for their hassle-free reliability, mind - for example, on Saturday I was at our local bike dealer, admiring a 10-plate Aprilia RSV4 Factory. Owner came over saying "fucking thing, I've only had it since March and it's been broken down 5 times." Wow. That's more than he's had rides on it.
As DD says, the newer Guzzis are better (and really, really quite lovely, too), but I can't help but think if you still did want something cheap and reliable you'd be better off with the Honda or an ER-5 or something.
I bought a copy of the Used Bike Guide at lunchtime and started pondering a Guzzi Nevada as they list the 93-98 ones as quite cheap. More ccs than I'd been aiming for mind.
If I remember correctly, their 750cc engine is a v-twin, so won't be as revvy or top-end heavy on the power as a straight four would be.
Edit: a quick lookup says 48hp, so probably about the same as some of the 400s.
Not sure I could get a restrictor kit for one though... Reminded by this as a Nevada came up on Gumtree although it's too new and expensive for me. Got a week's holiday coming up so might well do a little tour of London bike shops.
Oh and here are today's fantasy bikes:
The MZ is not a bad shout but the Ural is fucking horrible. A badly built copy of something the Wermacht left behind. They are rather disingenuously marketed in manner that conflates crudity with rugged reliability. I know somebody who has a relatively new 750; it has a top speed of 100km/h and the valves go out of adjustment every 200km.
If you want a good look at one then check out the Kazakh movie Podarok Stalinu. The drunken cop/rapist is always riding one. It's telling that they just gave him a new one to ride and it doesn't look out of place even though the movie is set in 1949.
Crikey. Those might have some Eastern Bloc chic or summat (wouldn't know), but you'll want a good mechanic if you're planning to do serious (say anything over about 1000 a year) miles on them.
I always thought MZs were point and laugh bikes.
A friend of mine has a 500 tourer type one. It's not bad... it's not great either, but it's ok. As far as I'm aware, no one has ever pointed and laughed at him, though.
Tbh, it's probably born agains who've seen Long Way Round (you know, R1x00Gs that's never been off road, full metal storage kits, mint condition Hein Gericke gear) who do that sort of thing anyway...
If I had this MZ you could point and laugh all you like, I think this bike is beautiful.
Maybe I'm thinking of CZs. But what the hell is going on in that photo?
Met a woman with a 1972 Honda CB125J today <sigh>
The old Honda CB-anything is nice. Have you considered a 2000 Honda CB250?
I'm after something between a 250 and a 600 really, as I want to be able to do longer trips comfortably. This makes it difficult as there is not much in that range at all. Good suggestion though. This is partly why I'm thinking a CB400 Super Four, as one day they too will be old Honda CBs...
And you get (usually) bulletproof reliability and decent parts cost and availability...
Ultimately, I shouldn't worry too much what other people think. If you're happy riding your bike, that's what really matters.
MZs had a pretty good racing record in the post war period as Walter Karden pioneered the use of tuned exhaust resonance on disc valve two strokes. Unfortunately one of the team's riders (Ernst Dengler) displayed false consciousness and a lack of commitment to totalitarian socialism by defecting to the west with Karden's designs.
The one in the picture is an MZ ES250 from the early 60s by which time the MZs were only slight less rubbish than every other eastern bloc bike. There's a mildly amusing review of one here. The carbs fell off and the indicators came on at random.
CZ had been reduced to a point and laugh bike by the 70s as 3 decades of communism had reduced them to building and selling shoddy tat. They do have a proud history in competition and, before the war, provided the bikes for the pope's escort riders!
The CZ Type 860 was an incredible bike; a 350cc 16v V4 with an 8 speed gearbox.
Desperately trying to restrain myself from bidding on a 1980 CB650 on ebay that ends tomorrow and I haven't even seen... £413 currently!!!
Today I went and looked at a Triumph Legend TT, 10 years old with 24k on the clock. This was on the basis that although it was a lot more cc than I'm looking for, it's described as being fairly sedate (which suits me), and there is a restrictor kit available. Although it's going for more than I'd budgeted really it's cheap for what it is because it's not mint (still shinier than any bike I've ever owned).
They don't look that big in the photos but I did feel it was a bit much really. Seemed like a lot of metal to be lugging around everywhere. And from reviews and what the owner said, I get the impression the spares are pretty pricey. So I walked away again... but I don't think he's had much interest so there's always the option to change my mind.
(not actual bike)
Well, if you're feeling completely insane, erm, brave, there's always the Norton F1:
a) You'd be lucky to even find one
b) Most modern 600cc sports bikes would destroy it
c) Doesn't really fit the bill that the OP was looking for...
Re: the Triumph and build quality...
My housemate has a 4 week old Triumph Thruxton. It's done 420 miles. It's got an oil leak. Maybe two.
Hm. The guy who was selling this bike had bought it when it was about 6 years old and had done about 4000 miles, and it needed a complete new ignition system.
On the plus side, he was clearly desperate for money and no-one else had rung him, so I could probably bargain him down quite a lot. But I just don't want to saddle myself with a lumbering beast with expensive parts.
Still, at least I found something I wanted to actually look at.
Right. I'm going to see something on Sunday evening that looks like it might be The One. The guy's got it up on ebay via a friend but has told me how much he'd accept for it, and I think if I want to bag it I might have to offer him cash on the spot because there's already been quite a bit of interest in it. He doesn't have it as a Buy it Now though, only on auction. It's all a bit of a grey area... Advice? There doesn't seem to the same hard and fast "don't pay outside ebay" rule for private vehicle sales that there is for other stuff, because people so often have things advertised elsewhere.
NB I've spoken to him and he strikes me as a genuine guy, just not au fait with the internet or the ways of ebay, which actually I am not either, as I've only ever bought a few bits and bobs on ebay.
I've bought loads (5 I think) of bikes on ebay and always done a cash deal without going through ebay. Ebay seems to be more of a marketing tool than an actual auction system when it comes to motorbikes.
Assume he is a liar and a fraud and act accordingly. I think this bike is from the era of Hinckley triples that had the 3 flat side Keihin carbs. If the throttle action isn't smooth run away as they are nightmare to set up. Any rust or slightest trace of crash/drop damage also run away. There's a million other bikes out there...
also bear in mind the massive theft of log books not so long ago. i've not looked into this much but my dad was warning me about cloned vehicles being sold for cash, you can't run a check on them because the info on the V5 is genuine. watch out for V5 forms with serial numbers starting BG or BI and give the VIN badge a good scratch in case it's covered by a fake VIN sticker.
although as this info came from my dad, i fully accept it may all be paranoid daily mail witterings
ps. hurry up and get a bike, the tension is killing me
This isn't the Triumph, I rejected that as too heavy. I haven't said what it is as there is only one of them on ebay at the mo and somehow it doesn't seem like a good idea to share with the internet exactly what I'm bidding on. Let's just say it's probably the electrics I'll need to be worrying about.
Tell me about it! Last week I was ready to abandon the search and cough up to get the old bike fixed. It's not just me being impossibly picky though, I was reading a piece in the Used Bike Guide about how there's not much on the second hand market at the moment because people aren't buying new bikes, so they're not selling the old ones.
I've just reread this and it doesn't ring true to me. They have to clone the bike for this sting to work. That seems like a hell of a lot of expensive work, setting up your own bike factory etc. Unless you're going to make up a load of bitsas. Which would still be a lot of work and I don't think they'd look very nice.
Anyway I've run a vehicle check and it's fine, and I'll ask the guy to show me some id so I can check it against the v5.
no, my understanding is they use a stolen bike but the info on the VIN and V5 is fake. well not fake, that's the point, they use the details of a genuine bike. thus when you do a vehicle check nothing comes up because you're checking another, genuine bike.
i guess it's the same as a cloned credit card, the card is fake, but the details on it aren't. so when it's used all seems fine
anyone thinking about a cash purchase from a private seller should read this:
"HPI first notified the public the theft of 130,000 blank registration forms from the DVLA when it happened back in 2006, and so far more than 11,000 cloned vehicles worth over than £13million have been recovered, but ACPO warn that it is likely that thousands more vehicles will have been stolen, cloned, and sold on illegally."
link to full article on HPI website
that said, i'm not trying to scare anyone and i hope this guy is genuine and you end up with a bargain.
and then it's pics or gtfo
Right. Well, that link also says that HPI check the registration against the numbers of the stolen forms, and it's they who provide the vehicle reports for vehicles sold on ebay and therefore the report I've bought on it, and it came up clear so I ought to be ok on that specific front.
Anyway IMO it's more likely that sellers are just less forthcoming than they might be about a vehicle's faults than that they're full on fraudsters.
didn't know ebay had an hpi check on vehicles, so yeah sounds like you're covered.
good luck today
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