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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

I've taken the MSF and gotten my license already. I've been looking at ninja 250's on craigslist the past 4 or 5 months and I've finally got about $2300.

My roommate was saying that I should stay away from buying a bike with a ding in the gas tank because it might've cracked a seal inside causing it to rust. The reason I ask is, there's a blue 2006 ninja 250 with 1,000 miles on it for $2,300 on craigslist with 1 scratch, a ding in the tank, and a crack in the fairing. He said he brought the bike in for a fuel tank recall and a strap on his trailer broke and it tipped over.

What's important to look for in a used bike?

I know to look at the chain, sprocket, make sure everything works, look in the gas tank for rust with a flashlight, make sure the oil isn't milky, tire tread... is there anything else specific I should look for?
 

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First thing I would recommend, and I just went and did this last week (Im looking to buy my own bike too), is to go to a dealership and sit on a bunch of bikes. Get a feel for what you do and don't like.

That being said, the Ninja 250 is a great little starter bike. A lot of fun to ride. And if the bike has sub 1K miles on it, I don't think your gonna find any problems with it. Though, there is probably someone better qualified to answer your question about what to look for

I think your roommate is right, hold off a bit longer for a 250 in better shape. Up north here they show up quite often in near perfect shape on craigslist. Prices for used 250 Ninjas are very good
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
If anyone could let me know if the gas tank ding is critical that would be awesome... I just found a black 2005 ninja 500 with 13k miles for $2000 with a dent in the gas tank and a couple scratches.
 

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Just Kiss The Tip
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I mean are you simply searching for bikes with a "ding" in the gas tank????

Guys who stunt bang in their tanks all the time....the bike will still run.

It's not gonna be a pristine bike obviously, but just depends on the severity of the "ding"


Go find a bike w/o a "ding" then you won't have to worry about it....
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No, it just so happens 2 good deals in my area on craigslist have dents in their tank. The guy with the ninja 500 is going to email me pictures of all the damage. NADA says low price for that bike is $2,480 and average is $3,260 (without checking the full fairing option). A 2005 ninja 500 with 13k miles for $2,000 sounds like a good deal to me. Do you agree?



 

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Just Kiss The Tip
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go for it then...go go go...before someone else scoops it up while you are waiting on your replies!!!!!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Here's the plan. I'm riding a greyhound bus from Gainesville to Jacksonville, then having a friend pick me up from the bus station and drive me to the DMV office. I plan to have the guy meet me there with the bike, look at it, pay him and get the title, register it, then ride it home... tomorrow.

My question is, do I need to register it before I call up Geico and get an insurance plan? Or do I need insurance before I can register it?
 

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Deutsche Rüstungsteilung
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Here's the plan. I'm riding a greyhound bus from Gainesville to Jacksonville, then having a friend pick me up from the bus station and drive me to the DMV office. I plan to have the guy meet me there with the bike, look at it, pay him and get the title, register it, then ride it home... tomorrow.

My question is, do I need to register it before I call up Geico and get an insurance plan? Or do I need insurance before I can register it?
Not sure about the south, but up here you will need insurance BEFORE the plate.
 

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As far as i know, you need insurance 1st... get that VIN# and call a better insurance place! (than Geico that is :( not a fan, they tried to screw me over and another person i know... screw that damn gecko lizzard thing...)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
He made a youtube video of the bike...

YouTube - 2005 Ninja 500 For Sale

Is it just me or do the forks not look right? Like paints chipping off them? The windshield is held on with zipties. And that tank dent is a lot b***** than I expected...
 

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in Florida, proof of insurance is NOT required when you go to register it.

i wouldn't worry too much about small dings in the gas tank, my honda has about 2 or 3 of em.

at that price range nothing will be pristine, i know, in Jacksonville i've looked at 250's for along time and could not find a good one for the price i wanted (1500-1800) so i caved in and bought my bike.

i would see if he could ride it home, even though you just completed the MSF course you have to relearn to ride on the ninja 250, a much different bike than the little cruiser style bikes they had at the range. and riding in the road for the first time is intimidating, have him ride it to your palce, ride it around the block a few times, then start riding the streets at night or when ever its less crowded and ease your way into it.

the paint does appear to be chipping off of the forks, be careful, when i went to look at a blue 04 250 with only 6K miles that same type of chipping was on the handle bars, also the fork seals were exposed and a handful of other things; that could be a sign that it has been sitting, possibly outside, it takes a little bit of weathering to erode the paint. and if it was improperly stored it could lead to a whole mess of things; become friends with a person who knows bikes and have him check it out with you, if i hadn't i would of been stuck with that money pit. my bike now has 27K on the clock and is 9 years older than the 250 was, how ever it was maintained properly and will run better. take a good look at the bike, if anything else seems weathered than ask him if its ever been stored etc. ask about previous maintenance, any receipts if he has them, same things you would ask when buying a car..

you really dont want to have to fix up your first bike so just be sure, because you will be rather inexperienced when it comes to maintaining a bike, and nothing is more frustrating than just watching it sit there when theres a beautiful day outside, which happens alot this time of year in fl.

i know its frustrating having to wait around with the possibility of the bike getting sold right under your nose, it happened to me a couple of times, but hey if it wasnt meant to be than thats just that. 2K is a lot of cash, so spend it wisely.


GL
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah I'm going to pass on the black 2005 ninja 500. I might go look at the blue 2006 ninja 250 tomorrow and see what kind of condition it's in... it's about 30 miles from me.
 

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Yeah I'm going to pass on the black 2005 ninja 500. I might go look at the blue 2006 ninja 250 tomorrow and see what kind of condition it's in... it's about 30 miles from me.
you should still go look and see the 500, (unless you have other things to do). school doesn't start till the 5th so you have some more time. if you find other cosmetic damage you could bargain with him, im just saying if you see rust around metal parts and other signs of weathering then just ask the seller, if he openly admits its been sitting then use that to negotiate, if he becomes hesitant then you know somethings wrong. from the video the bike looks pretty clean, a big part of selling and buying (to me anyways) is the sellers attitude, if he's shady then i will be way more wary from buying stuff from the person. pretty much you have to get a good look at the bike and dont buy the first thing you see. it could save you a lot of head aches in the future.

have you purchased gear yet? that stuff is pretty expensive too.

its an expensive hobby, but it is so much fun.

GL and ride safe
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
you should still go look and see the 500, (unless you have other things to do). school doesn't start till the 5th so you have some more time. if you find other cosmetic damage you could bargain with him, im just saying if you see rust around metal parts and other signs of weathering then just ask the seller, if he openly admits its been sitting then use that to negotiate, if he becomes hesitant then you know somethings wrong. from the video the bike looks pretty clean, a big part of selling and buying (to me anyways) is the sellers attitude, if he's shady then i will be way more wary from buying stuff from the person. pretty much you have to get a good look at the bike and dont buy the first thing you see. it could save you a lot of head aches in the future.

have you purchased gear yet? that stuff is pretty expensive too.

its an expensive hobby, but it is so much fun.

GL and ride safe

Yeah I still think I'm going to pass. I'd have to get a cab from my apartment to the bus station, ride a greyhound bus an hour and 35 minutes from Gainesville to Jacksonville and arrive in Jax at 12:25, have a friend pick me up from the station and go look at the bike, go to the DMV and get it registered, call the insurance company and get a plan, and leave Jax by 3:00 to get home in time to eat and get ready for work at 6:00 in Gainesville.... too much of a hassle if I didn't like the bike. I'd have to ask my Dad to drive me back to Gainesville.

I just offered the guy with the 2006 blue ninja 250 with 1k miles $1600 for it. It's listed for $2300, but NADA says $1560 low and $2050 average. It's got a crack in the fairing and a dent in the tank. We'll see what he says.

Yeah I've got a Shoei RF-1000 helmet, Cortech Vice gloves, and an Alpinestars T-Magnum Jersey jacket... all of them black.
 

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Dont ride your bike home from buying it. If the only experience you have is an MSF course...just dont do it. Its not the time to refresh the small skill set you have learned, plus learn a new bike at the same time.

Good luck on your purchase!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well he said NADA is full of shit and I should look at 1990's with 10K miles for $1600...

Oh well, next bike. I'm not even going to bother posting up info about the next bike I look at because the same thing will probably happen... owner won't budge or the bike is a piece.
 

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You will find a good deal, be patient and don't get your hopes up for the first one, buyers market this time of year. My first bike did not run and I had to rebuild the carbs. Luckily I bought it from a friend that took good care of it besides letting it sit for 3 yrs. Local forums, Graigslist and even Ebay are excellent sources.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
You will find a good deal, be patient and don't get your hopes up for the first one, buyers market this time of year. My first bike did not run and I had to rebuild the carbs. Luckily I bought it from a friend that took good care of it besides letting it sit for 3 yrs. Local forums, Graigslist and even Ebay are excellent sources.
Yeah I've been checking Gainesville, Jacksonville, Tampa, and Orlando on craigslist at least 5 times a week... for the past 4 months. I wonder if it really is a buyers market this time of year in Florida. It probably makes no difference... it was 78 and sunny here yesterday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I've got a question for you guys... When you're looking at used bikes on craigslist to buy, and you check the NADA values, where in that range do you usually offer?

For example, I found a 2004 Ninja 250 with 5k miles with just scratches on the mirror and handlebar end, nothing else wrong with the bike, right here in my area. It's listed for $2,000. NADA says $1,565 low retail with full fairing, and $1,999 average retail with full fairing. I'm trying to decide what to offer.

 
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