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Discussion Starter #1
Would you/should I buy a bike online??? without seeing it in person?

My thoughts.
I see plenty of pics...
Have the VIN
Know the mileage
Correct Keys shown.

So, would you at all?
Only if you could drive to see it? Ride it home...
or
If cheap enough to take a chance on Flying out and either shipping it home or riding?

If I do it all remotely, and will need to ship it...
How do I do that safely?
Are there specific ways to save safe?
Would you trust a dealer over a private sale??

As in most things, I believe a private sale is easier to haggle down. And they usually start with a lower price for a comparable machine.

Each week right now there are seemingly better deals.

Thank you in advance

Rex
 

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Bon Vivant
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If you've already ridden one like it before and know its the right bike for you I see no problem buying online. But if its bike you've never been on - don't do it. you need to ride it even if it seems like it would be perfect.

Depending on how far away it is I'd opt for driving out to get it - only if its more than about a 10 hour drive each way would I have it shipped.
 

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I've done it at least a dozen times.

Buying from a private party is different than from a dealer or through a site like Ebay. The financial risk of buying directly from a private party is significant, so you only want to do it when you can verify the identify of the seller and the legitimacy of the seller. Usually you can research the seller's contact information and confirm their identity by using a multifactor check (does their name match their phone number and address and property tax records and online identity).

If the seller can not satisfy you on the condition of the bike you can ask someone on the forum to inspect the bike, or you can ask the seller to deliver the bike to a dealer or shop for a prepurchase inspection which you arrange and pay for. Unless you trust the forum member's ability to do a proper inspection, it can be very worthwhile to pay a dealer for an inspection.

Shipping is easy to arrange through shipping brokers like Uship or motorcycle only carriers like Haulbikes. If you intend to drive and pickup or fly and ride, often you can do the deal as a deposit to hold the bike till you arrive to pick it up and pay the balance once you've satisfied yourself that the bike is as represented.

All this said, buying any used bike involves risk, so it is important for you to be diligent and disciplined in asking questions and reviewing information to determine the condition of a bike. Any representation a seller makes which they can not prove should be taken with a grain of salt. The risk of buying sight unseen is significant, but it is sometimes possible to overcome if you are thorough and use available resources to offset risk. To the degree the risk can not be overcome, the price you are willing to pay should reflect the risk you undertake making the purchase. This is true buying face to face or at a distance.
 

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need a "plan B" for worse case scenario's buying sight unseen.pay by credit card but first call them to see if you will be covered if it's not as described should you need to file a dispute.better than paypal in my experience.
 

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I would not buy a bike online. Worst case I would fly, buy, ride, or truck it.
But there are so many bikes here locally, I can probably find what I want with some patience.
I don't want something that is super rare or overly hard to find.
 

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I’ve had good luck with buying cars private party online so far. I would advise to speak with the seller over the phone to get a better feel. Most people have facetime/duo - if someone is willing to give you a detailed overview of the bike in person over FaceTime, I like to think that they are willing to meet you in person and have an honest conversation 👍
 

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I sometimes think about it, but I’d have to see it and do the deal in person in the end. On line sales are the devils playground. Probably the most common type scam ever. I have sold cars online but they were picked up in person with cash. In order to do each sale I did like that I fended off about a hundred scam artists, even for weeks afterwards. Never mind. The more I think about it, NO. I would not .
 

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I wouldn't buy a bike blind, and unless you or someone you know very well and trust is looking at it in person, that's buying blind. Pics can be so deceptive, and it's not unheard of for unscrupulous sellers to take pics the day they buy it and use them when they sell it....

Travelling to look and buy can be a bit hit and miss too, you've put the effort in to get there, the seller knows that as well and they're likely to be less negotiable if it's not what you expected yet still want it, you don't have any local knowledge or a shop that can do a pre purchase inspection so you're really on your own.

In my experience, and i have some, it's frought with risk and usually ends in disappointment, unless you're incredibly lucky, because at the end of the day the online world is FULL of scumbags, con artists and well, cunts that thrive on the anonymity of themselves and gullible nature of so many.
Be careful.
 

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It all depends on many variables --Is the bike extremely rare and this is probably the only chance you will ever get to own one?, Is the price so crazy low that you can afford to dump a good bit of $$ into it-(Now I do not consider a service, new tyres etc a dumping money into a bike-yes it's $$$ but service is just the cost of owning it)--If you needed to spend as much as you paid for it in repairs is it still a good deal??( again dont count maintenance) -How bad do you want it? again is this something that you wanted for a long time and this is the first time you have been able to find one? --I am into vintage BMW's and I have purchased a number of bikes sight unseen --But they have been rare low number production models where I can sink a lot of money into it to get them back to really nice original or do a full restoration and not be upside down. Remember money is relative to what you have & what you get, I am as we speak looking for a Vincent for one customer & a Brough Superior SS100 for another --They have the money to pay whatever it will take to get the bike they lust after--So again it comes down to what you want & how much you are willing to spend--this is something only you know
 

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I did it once with a ride-able, functional bike, and it turned out really great. Till the transaction is complete, there's a certain bit that rides on the faith, and that's a bit of a risk that you have to consider. But it could be really good, too. The seller in my case was rather an interesting young man, and I spent a long weekend taking a train to pick up the bike, and rode it back home for the next 3 days, which gave me a lot of time for me to get to know the bike. The initial contact is pretty important, I think, like how prompt the communication is, or how well. The normal social cues apply even communicating over emails or texts, and that can be a good indication of how comfortable you may feel dealing with the person.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thank you all for all the great responses so far.
Yes I am in the USA. Generally speaking I can fly to most places, stay 2 nights and fly back and ship the bike home all for around or less than a thousand dollars.
I would rather fly and ride (if close enough. Or have a friend drive me and ride home.)
Test riding is the biggest hangup here in GA. Over 18 inches of rain since January 1st... and only 7 days in February without rain so far.
I will not buy something I cannot ride. (at least a version of it...) Some dealers do not do test rides. Others do not have what I want... Only what they want to sell.
I started this journey thinking of buying new. But after reading an article on a forum (this one? another?) asking why do so many used Ducatis have such low mileage... I started looking and WOW some great deals out there.

Of course that led me to even more research about even older models.
I think I have stopped thinking of other brands, but now there are so many different models of monsters...
Maybe its good its still raining.
I just want to buy within the next month while I am looking at winter prices... Not spring prices...

Thanks
Rex
 

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This post caused me to look back at what I've bought sight unseen at a distance. $400K in motorcycles and cars in the past 8 years.

I've found the simplest way to eliminate scammers and misrepresenters in all cases is to ask a seller if they will submit a bike to a prepurchase inspection on your dime at a shop of your choosing. Scammers and intentional misrepresenters will never agree to do this and this will tell you all you need to know about a seller's honesty. The only question that isn't answered by the seller's response to this request is whether the bike is unintentionally being misrepresented. Some sellers simply aren't aware of the issues with their bikes and fail to represent them because of their ignorance. In many cases, I've been able to overcome this issue, by speaking with the shops the sellers have used for service.

I bought a bike in LA off of Craigslist and before I bought it, I was able to get its entire service history from Pro Italia as they had sold the bike new and serviced it from new. I had first become aware of the bike because it had been at Pro Italia on consignment and when it failed to sell, the seller had taken the bike back and listed it on Craigslist. Of course it was listed at a much lower price since the seller no longer had to cover Pro Italia's consignment fee and when confronted with the service history from Pro Italia, the seller agreed to an even greater price reduction. Did a buy, fly and ride in Austin coupled with going to the MotoGP one year and similarly was able to get the service history from the original selling dealer.
 

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You can normally gleen alot from just talking to the person on the phone and see how they react to legit questions, if you are sharp on the model you can easily determine whether you know more then they do and maybe guide them to look at things that they know nothing of to help make up your mind as well. When I purchase a bike sight un seen and I too have done this many times I can normally get a feeling of how honest the seller is in 15 min. or less
 

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A few years ago I bought a house sight unseen. Instead I paid several different “reputable” inspectors to check various things for me that they were supposedly experts in. The inspectors were recommended to me by my realtor, whom I trusted. She in turn trusted these inspectors. Not only was the house not in the condition the condition the inspectors claimed, but I paid a couple of thousand dollars to them for their expert inspections on top of it.
The point of this story is that it’s easy to get fucked dealing long distance, and hard to do anything about it.
Also, every long distance “ deal” I’ve ever looked into has turned out to be a scam, so I’m prejudiced. Yes, I figured it out in time, but what an aggravation and a waste of time.
 

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I bought my bike in 2019 from Sin City Ducati in Las Vegas. The price was nothing my local Ducati dealer in Wisconsin could come close to so naturally I was leery but did my homework to ensure it was not a scam. They are a power sports conglomerate and therefore can offer better deals than smaller dealers. It was new 2018 dealer stock. They were great to work with. They were as paranoid as I was. I had to get my contract paperwork notarized by my local bank. Yes, it took longer to get my bike but it was shipped to my front door via Haul Bikes who were great to work with and they worked with Wisconsin DMV to get my plates as well. I am very happy with my purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
That, That right there is a great answer...'

So were many others guys....

I like that they were as afraid as you. My thinking has been (looking for confirmation...) that a dealer should (not always) be easier to trust. Out side of pics that don't show a ding or scratch... at the very least (in my limited knowledge and experience) That at the very least the bike would show up...

Rode an older 821 today. The complaint of your foot hitting the Pillion peg when you try to put the ball of your foot on the peg is very real. the 2019 was much better.
There are deals galore right now... both 821 and 1200. S and R
Not sure if the best move is Quick... winter pricing...
OR
Wait... and get the Virus nobody is buying prices...


Rex
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Or just wait and see if you get the virus, you may not need a new bike.
Thinking of starting to sell Tshirts

Ride with me, I already survived the virus!
OR
I Ride twins in case one gets sick!

But, I really am re thinking the Fly and ride/ship. Close enough by car with a friend is still on the table.

Rex
 
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