Cheap Thrills - Can you get started in motorcycling for $2,500 or less?

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by Seavoyage, Apr 9, 2012.

  1. gunnabuild1

    gunnabuild1 Long timer

    Sep 13, 2008
    Ipswich Queensland
    $1500 and first trip 2500 k's near enough.And bikes here cost more than you would believe.
    Those who suggested the various 250 dualsports are right on the money,especially starting out,do everything you need ESPECIALLY if your starting out.
  2. Buck McCann

    Buck McCann Been here awhile

    Aug 18, 2008
    Loved this thread!
  3. Skidmarkart

    Skidmarkart Dirty Middle Age Man

    Sep 24, 2012
    Durham NC, The Old Durty
    Couple of things...

    Yes, you can get a bike for under $2500 that is a sweet bike. Just look at the Cheap Bike Challenge thread in Olds Cool. Hell, if you look around, you can find one you might not even want to drop. BUT, don't be in a hurry! Look around. Do research. Test ride if you can. Get THE RIGHT bike.

    Do you wrench at all? Do you have time to spend on it if you can wrench? Do you have the tools? Also, if it's your first bike - how will you ride? Commute? Long trans-continent rides? On road? Off road? Mixed? Is MPG important? Write it all down. Get a bike that hits most of your goals/needs.

    Finally, if your budget is $2,500 - just be sure you cut out part of that for PROPER safety gear. Good gear ain't cheap. No, you don't have to run out and buy the most expensive thing on the market. BUT, get good, reputable, tested, and (especially if it is plastic) not too old gear. It makes a difference!

    Lastly, get a nice older bike with plenty of miles for the best price you can. Learn to ride well on it. Sell it and move up. If you follow the process carefully, you will lose very little money in depreciation.
  4. pjm204

    pjm204 Long timer

    Jan 28, 2010
    Philadelphia, PA
    Picked up a 1982 GS450T for $750, rode it from Philly to Yellowstone and back. Sold it when I got home for $1000. Topped out at 106(indicated), That was roughly 9000rpm in 6th gear. And yes I took it on some very gnarly trails.
  5. SloMo228

    SloMo228 World Class Cheapass

    Sep 22, 2012
    SE Michigan
    Let's see... for all the bikes I've EVER owned, excluding maintenance costs, here's the total:

    '86 Yamaha Radian 600 - free
    '79 Honda CX500 - $400
    '78 Honda GL1000 - $200 purchase price, another $600 to put it where it is today, so $800 total to make it roadworthy
    '93 Honda GL1500 - free
    '96 Suzuki DR350 - $500
    '00 Kawi ZRX1100 - $1500 (big money for this one)

    Granted, the Radian and GL1500 were lucky windfalls, but even leaving them out, you have 4 perfectly functional motorcycles for a princely sum of $3200.

    So where's the challenge in getting started for less than $2500? It helps if you can turn your own wrenches, but the CX needed no work at all, and the DR and ZRX were running with less than $100 of parts each and an afternoon spent cleaning carbs - if you had to pay someone to do it, it probably would have cost $150 or less for the DR and maybe $400 for the ZRX - still well within the $2500 range and leaving plenty of money for decent gear.

    Now, you can't go out and buy the biggest, shiniest, newest, fastest bike out there, and anything not Japanese-made is probably going to be outside of the budget, but it's very doable for less than $1500, let alone $2500.

    Edit: If you're not trying to buy bikes in the frenzied market of early summer, it's even easier. Pick something up in the dead of winter and save another few hundred bucks.
  6. rthuey

    rthuey twist your wrist!!!

    May 15, 2005
    insanity is not as easy as i make it look
    148 pages of <$1500 for you to consider