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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking into starting a sportbike/touring-bike rental along with a scooter rental in Ft.lauderdale florida, and would just like to check if riders thought this was a needed service, or should I look at other type of business.

Rental fee would be about $150-200 per day for a bike, while the scooters would rent for about $85 for the day.

There are a few places that rent harley's, but nobody is renting sportbikes/touring bikes for some reason.

I've looked into the insurance, and fortunatly the insurance isn't really that high, as long as there is an age restriction of the rider/passenger of 25 years of age. There would be a ccc# deposit though, and riders would be responsible for the full cost of the bike (unless a CDW would be purchased).

I've also decided to keep a few ducati's 748/749's for any ducati rider, that wants to ride around s.fla on a superbike.

Any input would be appreciated.

Thanks.
 

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while I don't think I am going to be going to Florida anytime soon...I do think it is a VERY worthwhile venture.....I had nothing but trouble with no avail to finding a Sportbike to rent while I was in Las VEgas and I figured since I could rent a Lamborghini and a Ferrarri that I'd have no problem finding a sportbike to rent...but Nooooooooooo....so I am all for the idea!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Zoom, I'll be sure to give you a REALLY good discount if you ever come down to s.fla (that is if I do this..)

Anyone else?
 

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I agree, good bike rental places are tough to find. When my girlfriend passed her her riders course at Harley Davidson we could not find any small bikes in the chicago milwaukee area to rent (I know you may not want to get involved with newer riders) outide the Harley network. She did rent a Buell Blast for a weekend from them and that went well enough she bought a bike within a couple of weeks. She paid an arm and a leg to rent that bike so there must be good money in it?
Good Luck.
Brock
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Baw13, actually I was going to rent out my bandit 400, and a Kawasaki 250 for newer riders. Any new rider could also rent them to pass their DMV license test. I would drop the bike off at the DMV, and they could then ride it anywhere after they pass their test.

Thanks.
 

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I think the rental of starter bikes is a really missing link in the market. Small cc bikes for the new rider. Bikes are expensive and not everyone is sure they will like it or be able to do it until they have a chance to actually get out there and try it in traffic. We looked far and wide for a starter bike for her to rent.
Good luck.
Brock
 

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I don't know that I want to own a GSX-R 1000 or 999 to rent out. I would imagine that anyone renting a bike like that has a reason...

I would think that keeping the displacement to 600cc and under would be better from a business standpoint.
 

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I lived in Ft. Lauderdale (actually Plantation, Pompano Beach, and Sunrise) from 1981 until the end of 1994 all the while owning sport bikes, RZ350, Duc 750 Sport, and 900SS. When I first moved there was a couple placing renting small cruiser and mid size bikes which great for friends coming into town. My main problem with south Florida and sport bikes is that the riding in my opinion is boring not a lot of turns and it's flat. Other than a few curves around the local golf course (close to the old Action Sports Ducati shop) and getting on and off the highway it's straight, left and right. It's much more cruiser friendly. With all the traffic and beaches scooters sound like a great idea.
 

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MichaelBatt said:
I don't know that I want to own a GSX-R 1000 or 999 to rent out. I would imagine that anyone renting a bike like that has a reason...

I would think that keeping the displacement to 600cc and under would be better from a business standpoint.
bike rental places that I have read about in the past do carry mostly 600cc displacement bikes but also do carry some of the larger displacement bikes....and yes Micheal...you are right...there are guys out there who want to rent a Gixxer 1000 and take it out and go and do a top end run because it isn't thiers......but the way to prevent that is through cost per rental....if it is 50 bucks for a day on a liter bike like that......hell...I might consider it for the same purpose if only just once to say "Yeah,I did it!"....but that is not the kinda bike I'd want to ride cause I really wouldn't be able to enjoy or use it the way it is meant to be used....I'd much rather rent a 749S or a 999S and take it out and enjoy the torque thrustability of the machine and the pimp-a-bility of Ducati coolness......but my number one concern for this type of business is care and maintenance on the fleet of machines due to the general inability of renters to care about what limitations they should meet or why they should stop bumping the red line and rev limiter in gears especially in a bike's initial break-in period....if they drop it...that is noticeable apon return.....but if they wheelie the crap out of it and do the type of crap I just described....you won't be able to see that kind of damage until well after they are gone and that deposit has been returned!.....yeah...you expect clutches and tires and brakes to wear out and be replaced fairly frequently....do oil changes frequently.....but what about that one day someone is tooling down the road on a rental careless and free not doing anything out of the ordinary and a cam chain tensioner goes kablooey or the bike throws a rod.....and it is moreso due to some ya-hoo some time before that flogged the living daylights out of it who is long gone and mr innocent is left holding the bag???.....
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Actually Michaelbatt, the insurance company that I'm currently looking into covering the business stippulates that the maximum engine size for the sportbikes is 600cc, and I'll own the bikes outright. The touring bikes can have a larger displacement though, but they would only be rented out for a minimum of 3 days.

My plan is to try to keep a nice collection of fairly new bikes in stock. I will try to buy brand new bikes, but at around $8000 each, I can buy 3 $5000 (one to two year old/low milage bikes) for the price of two new bikes.
That also reduces the cost if one is trashed, as the security deposit will cover it more easily.

The downside is that it's harder to get maximum rental fee for a year old bike.

baw13, I plan on adding more smaller cc bikes, if the market shows that there is demand for it. I prefer the 250-500cc bikes, since they are actually more fun to ride..if you really know how to ride, you understand.

Anyone who has ridden a GSXR400 or a RC30/NC30 will agree that size isn't important, but instead it's the riders ability.

Thanks guys.
 

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bubbazenetty said:
Anyone who has ridden a GSXR400 or a RC30/NC30 will agree that size isn't important, but instead it's the riders ability.

Thanks guys.
funny you mention 400CC bikes like those...not that my track bike is more special than those machines...but I love the fact that my track bike is an FZR400....I get almost the power of a 600 (especially if I do the 560 stroker motor set-up) and all the handling prowess of something like a 250!....now all I have to do is lay my hands on a reasonably prices TZR250 5 inch wide rear wheel!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Zoom,
I've already thought about everything you have said. My stand on it is that I'll try to "screen" the customers as much as I can. This means that if you have a BAD driving record, I'll reserve the right to refuse to rent to you. If you bring the bike back with a rear tire, that shows that you've been doing burnouts etc, I'll reserve the right to refuse to refund the deposit.

But in the end, I can't babysit the bike or it's rider, and yes it's possible that one or two riders will redline the bike and wheelie them. My main customer base, though will be the avid motorcycle enthusiast who is looking to enjoy the bike and respect it's limits.

I'm sure auto rental company's have the same issues. Where a customer will flog the shit out of a car, only to return it to the rental company, and nobody is the wiser. It's the chance you take, when you have a business. Fortunatly this is the 2% that try to ruin it for the rest of us.

Mechanical brakedowns are rare, but in case they do happen, I'll do my best to rectify the situation as soon as possible. Ofcourse, I won't hold a rider responsible, if it is obvious that the breakdown wasn't due to his riding behaviour.

And by having bikes with a at least 2000miles on them, I can be sure that the breakin period is done, when the bike gets brought to the customer.

Thanks for the feedback guys.
 

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No one has yet mentioned that Ft. Lauderdale is a long way from Daytona Beach, where a lot of the rentals could emanate.
 

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zooom said:
.....I had nothing but trouble with no avail to finding a Sportbike to rent while I was in Las VEgas and I figured since I could rent a Lamborghini and a Ferrarri that I'd have no problem finding a sportbike to rent...but Nooooooooooo....so I am all for the idea!
sportbikerental.com rents in Vegas, they even have three Ducs.
 
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