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Old 05-22-2013, 06:27 PM   #1
PBOB OP
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Craigslists: "Dumbass of the week" Nominee

So while this is still fresh on my mind....
I went and looked at a 1982 Kawasaki GPZ550, w/ unitrak suspension, dual front disk and rear single disk.
The kid that was selling it was like IDK 22yo maybe. Anyway he had it listed for $1800. He had one semi-fuzy pic. It was 5 miles from my house so I went and looked at it today.
Before I go any further, let me say that I do have some experience with 80's Japanese motorcycles- seeing as I have owned something like 20 of them...
Back to the craigslist find- SO I go out and look at it and right away I'm thinking, "this is a $500 bike"
It had a crappy rattle can spray paint on the engine and cases. The headers were unoriginal galvanized and slightly rusty. The muffler was shoehorned on with a stainless steel band and sounded aweful. The starter button was malfunctioning so that you had to mash it down to even get it to turn over. Once it did fire up the engine was making serious clunking and whinning noises. But the bike wouldn't stay idling so you had to constantly give it fuel. In addition, the seat was covered in black duct tape, the sided covers were cracked and distorted and barely hanging on. The battery was at least 5 years old with rusty terminals. The tank was dented and faded. The dash was scared up and faded and the front brake lever partially broken from a fall. The ad said the tires were new but they were obviously dry rotted and had many years on them and were not safe for highway speeds probably. Also this kid told me there was a slight engine gasket leak. So I looked at it and saw where it was leaking. He had wedged a blue machanics paper towel into the head to prevent excessive leakage (which didn't work- and would likely catch fire at some point). Eventually I got around to the air box area. It was seeping oil out all around the drive chain area. The general consensus being there wasn't one area of the lower part of the bike not covered in oil grim from who knows where. Next, (which I'm not sure why I even hung around any longer) I put a voltmeter to the battery and monitered output. It never broke 12.8v even when he rev'd it up.
When I had totally given it the once over, him and I talked about the bike...
"yea ah man, I have had it for like 3 weeks. I have't done anything to it. I drove it home and realized it was like too small for me so like that's why like honestly I'm getting rid of it. i haven't messed with it but all the stuff it needs is like easy stuff you can fix in like 20 minutes" (Liar )
Oh ok.
ME:"well, I hope you didn't pay to much for it. What do you want for it again?"
"I have it listed for like $1800 but that's like just what I'm asking. But I know it's not worth that much. I didn't pay that much for it. I got it from a friend in Ohio, He is like somebody my family knows and I got it from him" (moron are you kidding me )
ME:"Well, you want to know what I think?... I hope you didn't pay more than $250 for it because frankly that's all its worth"
all of a sudden his attitude changes and he gets super defensive.
"dude, man, I know what I'm doing. I got like my college degree in like business. I have sold like 13 cars and like 5 motorcycles. You don't know what your talking about. Thats a good motorcycle. It can go for 100 of thousands of miles. It only needs a few things. How much will you offer me. I seriousl didn't pay much for it."
ME:" I will give you $250. It needs a lot of work. It's a project bike."
And he continues until he gets pissed at me.
I keep my cool the whole time and simply tell him good luck....

Crap like this totally ticks me off. That bike tops $1500 in great condition. $700-1000 in useable condition. I could understand if the bike was in excellent condition and he was asking $1800. I get it when I see a minty well cared for old school bike listed for 2000-$2500 and the guy selling has a nice retro ride in great condition. Any retro ride in excellent condition with constant & correct maintenance up to date can pull down $2000. It's small beans for a bike that you can simply ride with not much additional thought. So it doesn't bother me when I see a nice retro ride 500-$1000 above realistic value. But morons like this are a dime a dozen. I feel like its my duty to tell these guys that they are out of their minds and they are trying to rip off potential buyers. On top of that, even if you kindly explain why their crap is not anywhere near the value they are asking- it's always inevitable that they are going to get defensive like a little child and explain they know what their doing... Frankly it's comical. They know what they have is a piece of crap, yet they insist its an "easy fix, like 15 minutes".
So dumbass, why didn't fix it already?
Ahhhhh!
Please, feel free to share your craiglist "dumbass of the week"

here's the add:
http://charlestonwv.craigslist.org/mcy/3820227119.html
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Old 05-22-2013, 06:34 PM   #2
Beater
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It's a free country ... he can ask what he wants. Maybe he can find another dumb-ass (like himself) that he can sell it to.

Kudo's to you though ... giving him your honest opinion. I personally wouldn't have even stopped by. I would have just assumed (correctly) that he was either a dreamer, or clueless ... or both.
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Old 05-22-2013, 06:47 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beater View Post
It's a free country ... he can ask what he wants. .

Very true!
But, for me I like to go out and see any kind of bike. Gives me good practice. For every 10 bikes I look at- I buy one. And, many times after looking at bikes like these and a month or 2 later I often get a call. I then can name my price and get the bike out of the garage.

I know there has to be some similar craigslist stories that are better than this.... Do you speak you mind or just say no thanks and walk away?
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1982 Honda CB900c
2002 Kawasaki KL250G "Super Sherpa"
1999 Honda CN250 Helix
1995 Honda XR650L (in Shasta white and Uranus violet of course)
The list is long, I'll stop there....
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:10 PM   #4
bmwhacker
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The other side of the coin:

I went to look at a near pristine 18k mile, 1979 850 Suzuki last Fall....$350.00.
It didn't run and the guy simply wanted it to go away. Tires looked new, battery was near new, all it needed was some carb manifold clamps and ran great. I didn't even try to get him lower on the price. Bike was a good buy.
You just never know.....
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:14 PM   #5
Watercat
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Caveat emptor - Buyer beware . . . . . . .

Good luck with the buy !

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Old 05-22-2013, 08:28 PM   #6
PBOB OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwhacker View Post
The other side of the coin:

I went to look at a near pristine 18k mile, 1979 850 Suzuki last Fall....$350.00.
It didn't run and the guy simply wanted it to go away. Tires looked new, battery was near new, all it needed was some carb manifold clamps and ran great. I didn't even try to get him lower on the price. Bike was a good buy.
You just never know.....
This I know as well. I once had a lady sell me her ex-husband CX500 for $50. She was tired of looking at it. I put in a new battery, did general maintenance and one heck of a cleaning and it road like new...
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1982 Honda CB900c
2002 Kawasaki KL250G "Super Sherpa"
1999 Honda CN250 Helix
1995 Honda XR650L (in Shasta white and Uranus violet of course)
The list is long, I'll stop there....
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Old 05-22-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
crazydrummerdude
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I was looking for a Suzuki GS for my friend. I found a good deal on a GS550 about a mile from my shop. The ad said it was in pristine condition, ran well, and came with extra carbs and various parts.

I get there and the bike is partially hidden. I convince him to clear some space and... it's completely wrecked. Like, forks bent back and broken, wheel broken off, headers shoved into engine. The swingarm and rear wheel were probably the only things not obviously bent/sheared/destroyed. He showed me the box of "extra" parts and it was just all the parts that had actually fallen off it since its accident.



I'll bet before the accident it was in pretty good shape, sadly. I didn't even offer anything. I just left. I posted a warning ad on craigslist so no one else would waste their time, but it got flagged.
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:23 AM   #8
ivantheterrible
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of course it's their property and they can ask whatever they want, but........

to me sportster's are frustrating. (maybe because I'm interested in one)
there seems to be no correlation between miles, age, or the shape it's in and price. $3500 and up regardless.

even the hopeless cases are way over priced.

there's one sportster that's been on the local CL for years that's got a bent frame and looks like it's been sitting for many years terrible pictures (that's a whole other thread) and the person hasn't budged on the price.$2800. Another one that's been on the CL for many months, if not a year or so, complete basket case, and the baskets have been stored outside uncovered, with no title, $1800. Not that I'm interested in these, but it amuses me.

most of the ones that are curious to me aren't anything I'm interested in. It just makes me wonder what's going on with the person.

A tricked out ruckus scooter gets reposted nearly everyday with the same $5500 asking price. does the seller really think someone is going to pay $5500 for a scooter?

Suzuki gn400, looks to be in good shape, unusual bike, but $3800 seems unrealistic.

Any number of rough bikes with no title for $1500.
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:26 AM   #9
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there is a guy local to me that is advertising a "complete" 1100 goldwing motor. it says 1000 on the valve covers, no manifold or carbs, no fuel pump, timing belts missing, ect. it runs great however
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:50 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PBOB View Post
This I know as well. I once had a lady sell me her ex-husband CX500 for $50. She was tired of looking at it. I put in a new battery, did general maintenance and one heck of a cleaning and it road like new...
I feel like its my duty to tell these guys that they are out of their minds and they are trying to rip off potential buyers. On top of that, even if you kindly explain why their crap is not anywhere near the value they are asking-
Nice job, you knew it was more valuable than $50 that was a rip off price, did you kindly explain why her crap was more valuable than, or is that not your duty.
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Old 05-23-2013, 08:10 AM   #11
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I really like restoring old (pre-1969) Harleys. Actually, I do vintage Harley restorations as a side job. I buy old 'project bikes' off of craigslist, restore them, ride them for a bit, then sell them.

I probably look at between 1 and 3 bikes that I find on Craigslist every week. 90% of the time, the bike is not as advertised, in a bad way.

I went to look at a 1967 XLCH (kick start only 900cc sportster). I was assured that it ran over the phone. When I got there, the motor was locked up. Couldnt make it budge with either the kicker or by pushing the bike in gear. The guy told me: 'starter just stuck when I went to fire it up for you, and a new battery should fix it and get it cranking'. One: this bike does NOT have an electric start. Two: this bike has NO battery. I let him know that he was full of shit and gave him a low, but fair offer. Then walked away. He calle me 2 weeks later and said I culd buy the bike for my original offer. I said "OK" and went to pick up the bike. He had since sold/removed the carb and magneto off of the bike, and claimed that he never had them!! When i pointed this out, and made him a lower offer he called me a liar. I then pulled out my phone and showed him photos of the bike, with carb and magneto installed, that I took when i first visited. He still denied that the bike used to have the parts. We did not make a deal.

Pre- 1969 Harleys (and a lot ofother 1960's and older bikes) were titled by the motor only. There were no VIN numbers on the frames. I quite often find motor with the VIN's ground off, and a sketchy looking VIN engraved into the frame. "yeah, man just go to the DMV, you can get a title for like $50". Right...

I'm so used to people on craigslist being full of shit that I expect it now. I wont drive more than 20 mins to see a bike unless there are good photos and I talked to the person on the phone first.

When i show up to see a bike, and it looks just as good in real life as it did online, I'm SHOCKED. I'll gladly hand over the saking price for a nice bike, thats as advertised, with a nice owner. It's just a rare suprise.
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Old 05-23-2013, 09:10 AM   #12
Airhead Wrangler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sidecar Jockey View Post
I wont drive more than 20 mins to see a bike unless there are good photos and I talked to the person on the phone first.
Buying off of craigslist is as much about sizing up the seller as it is the merchandise itself. If the seller can take photos with something other than a cell phone, email them to you, and speak to you on the phone in complete sentences, these are all good indicators that the seller is not a complete waste of flesh. Sellers who text me with shit like "OK CU L8R" and insist on communicating through text messages and sending 8 shitty blurry photos taken from the exact same angle with a cellphone in their dark garage with no flash, shouldn't even be considered as they just aren't competent enough to own and maintain a motorcycle (or anything else with moving parts for that matter). They're lazy, incompetent, and spend the majority of their life wearing BBQ-sauce-stained sweatpants and probably had a similar disposition when it came to maintenance of their motorcycle.
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:12 AM   #13
bgoodsoil
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I towed a trailer 3 hours to eastern TN a few months back after promising to buy a Honda Dream 90 from a guy the day before at his asking price. When I showed up, he wasn't home. Waste of day not to mention $60 in gas. It's those few treasures that keep us coming back to dealing with the bullshit.
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:34 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by ivantheterrible View Post
most of the ones that are curious to me aren't anything I'm interested in. It just makes me wonder what's going on with the person.
Craigslist is what Psychiatrist's in training should use instead of text books.
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Old 05-23-2013, 12:29 PM   #15
ivantheterrible
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yes- I should have my head examined for all the time I waste looking at CL motorcycle listings!
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