Is it high mileage, or low mileage?


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Solina Dave
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Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Solina Dave » Wed Feb 25, 2015 11:51 am



I'm researching a possible future GL1100 purchase. It's my impression that the earlier GL1100 and GL1100 Interstates had 5 digit odometers, but on the 1983 GL1100 Aspencade they went to a 6 digit odometer. This obviously, assuming both odometers have been functioning properly, makes it difficult to be certain of the mileage on the motorcycles prior to the '83 Aspencade. Does the motorcycle have 25,000 miles, or 125,000 miles, or 525,000 miles? See where I'm going?
Assuming one doesn't know the seller personally, this also makes things difficult. I've seen seller comments like, "23,467 miles showing on odometer", or "low miles", (low miles compared to what?)
Is there anybody else who might be wondering the same thing, and how would you deal with this problem? I wouldn't want to get home with my "low miles" purchase, only to find that it needs hundreds, or thousands, to get it right. Any comments, or advice? :idea:

Just sayin'.................Dave


"Assume Nothing"

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roadwanderer2
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Motorcycle: 83 GL1100A aspencade, previously owned, 1981 honda GL500i silverwing interstate, 1974 yamaha xs400, 1974 Honda cb450 twin cam, 1983 honda vt30, 1982 honda 700 shadow, 1972 cb750four, and my first bike, a brand new 1982 honda CM400e. and a new to me 1986 GL1200 aspencade SEi
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby roadwanderer2 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 12:16 pm

Solina Dave wrote:I'm researching a possible future GL1100 purchase. It's my impression that the earlier GL1100 and GL1100 Interstates had 5 digit odometers, but on the 1983 GL1100 Aspencade they went to a 6 digit odometer. This obviously, assuming both odometers have been functioning properly, makes it difficult to be certain of the mileage on the motorcycles prior to the '83 Aspencade. Does the motorcycle have 25,000 miles, or 125,000 miles, or 525,000 miles? See where I'm going?
Assuming one doesn't know the seller personally, this also makes things difficult. I've seen seller comments like, "23,467 miles showing on odometer", or "low miles", (low miles compared to what?)
Is there anybody else who might be wondering the same thing, and how would you deal with this problem? I wouldn't want to get home with my "low miles" purchase, only to find that it needs hundreds, or thousands, to get it right. Any comments, or advice? :idea:

Just sayin'.................Dave


if the bike being sold is from a "honest" seller, the mileage should be accurate. you can compare the mileage shown on the odometer to what the mileage states on the title from when he/she bought it. if they match,( 20,000-30,000 more driven miles over what it states on the title since it purchased by the current owner), you'll have an accurate account of the mileage. as far a "compared to" comments, that would assume the seller is comparing his bike's mileage and condition to others that are of the same year, make and model. the old adage is, "let the buyer beware" holds true to any purchase regardless of what it is. as the buyer, you have to weigh the options and come to your own decision whether or not to make the purchase. if it looks or sounds to good to be true, It probably is, or, you could make arrangements to have the bike checked out by a certified qualified bike tech then make your decision based upon what he/she finds out.

good luck with your endeavors in finding a good used GL1100.

stuart.

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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Feb 25, 2015 12:51 pm

Also, if you do a title search with a service like Carfax (careful because some of them don't include motorcycles), it should show the mileage on the odometer during each title transfer - and in some cases, the mileage reported on each annual registration renewal.

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roadwanderer2
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby roadwanderer2 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:57 pm

WingAdmin wrote:Also, if you do a title search with a service like Carfax (careful because some of them don't include motorcycles), it should show the mileage on the odometer during each title transfer - and in some cases, the mileage reported on each annual registration renewal.


wingadmin is correct, and you can also look up a motorcycle on kbb.com to see what other bikes are selling for.

stuart.

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Solina Dave
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Solina Dave » Wed Feb 25, 2015 5:14 pm

Thanks for your good ideas. Just a few comments to further extend the conversation.
If the motorcycle was being sold by an honest seller, then the mileage would hopefully be accurate. That is of course assuming, that when the seller purchased the motorcycle, he or she knew the accurate mileage on the motorcycle at that time.
I think that a 5 digit odometer is a problem when it comes to annual registration renewals. I just renewed my plate stickers for this year and when I entered my mileage, I was told that it wasn't needed because of the motorcycles age. I think that this is because any information that the dept. of transport would have, regarding mileage on an older motorcycle, especially with a 5 digit odometer, would be difficult to track. Also, doesn't CarFax get that particular information from the dept. of transport? So, wouldn't their information data base be tainted? I don't know.
The assumption that a seller is comparing condition and mileage with other similar motorcycles also brings with it the question of seller honesty in regards to the mileage question. External and cosmetic features of the motorcycle are somewhat easy to present by the use of photographs, but mileage, and things hidden, such as engine condition, are hard to see.
"Let the buyer beware", is a very relevant point that I think everyone would appreciate. Also, "If it sounds too good to be true" is another well known phrase. Both are completely valid, and one should definitely stay awake at all times.
Having a service tech. check it over is a very good idea. I'd personally like that very much, as long as I could find one familiar with older machines, and I could deal with the travel, and scheduling, and logistics of it all.
Maybe the best way is to survey, over a period of time, maybe a year or so, as many motorcycles as you can regarding the year, and model you want, average everything out to establish a base minimum requirement, see what it takes, to make you believe that the seller is a noble, and honorable individual, and then go shopping.

signed.........paranoid Dave :D
"Assume Nothing"

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roadwanderer2
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby roadwanderer2 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 5:32 pm

Solina Dave wrote:Thanks for your good ideas. Just a few comments to further extend the conversation.
If the motorcycle was being sold by an honest seller, then the mileage would hopefully be accurate. That is of course assuming, that when the seller purchased the motorcycle, he or she knew the accurate mileage on the motorcycle at that time.
I think that a 5 digit odometer is a problem when it comes to annual registration renewals. I just renewed my plate stickers for this year and when I entered my mileage, I was told that it wasn't needed because of the motorcycles age. I think that this is because any information that the dept. of transport would have, regarding mileage on an older motorcycle, especially with a 5 digit odometer, would be difficult to track. Also, doesn't CarFax get that particular information from the dept. of transport? So, wouldn't their information data base be tainted? I don't know.
The assumption that a seller is comparing condition and mileage with other similar motorcycles also brings with it the question of seller honesty in regards to the mileage question. External and cosmetic features of the motorcycle are somewhat easy to present by the use of photographs, but mileage, and things hidden, such as engine condition, are hard to see.
"Let the buyer beware", is a very relevant point that I think everyone would appreciate. Also, "If it sounds too good to be true" is another well known phrase. Both are completely valid, and one should definitely stay awake at all times.
Having a service tech. check it over is a very good idea. I'd personally like that very much, as long as I could find one familiar with older machines, and I could deal with the travel, and scheduling, and logistics of it all.
Maybe the best way is to survey, over a period of time, maybe a year or so, as many motorcycles as you can regarding the year, and model you want, average everything out to establish a base minimum requirement, see what it takes, to make you believe that the seller is a noble, and honorable individual, and then go shopping.

signed.........paranoid Dave :D


now see, there are good sellers and there are sellers that just want to take your money regardless of what it takes to get it. same thing with the auto repair industry which I was a part of. I am a retired auto tech, and it used to make my boss/bosses very angry if I told a customer that his/her vehicle didn't need a costly repair rather than something that was an inexpensive fix. my boss/bosses would come over to me and say, "why did you tell that person their vehicle didn't need a, (for example), a 500.00 repair and it would only cost him/her about 75.00?, and I would tell him, "because it didn't need it", which by the way cost me a couple of jobs,(fired) along the way. but it was a matter of principal to me. "if it needed it, I would have recommended it". I know for a fact that I wouldn't want my mom or anyone else I know be taken "over the coals" when it comes to repairs. same goes for "honest" sellers. what im trying to say here is that there are honest sellers out there for the most part. even if you did get "taken" there are avenues you can take to get your funds back IE: small claims court if you cant get any other satisfaction, but it still comes down to "buyer beware".

stuart.

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redial
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby redial » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:37 pm

Any input to consider is the service records - if they have been kept!
Len in Kapunda

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roadwanderer2
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby roadwanderer2 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:18 pm

redial wrote:Any input to consider is the service records - if they have been kept!


very true. its amazing how many "good" bikers keep service records or receipts for any work or parts they may of bought or had done to their machines. I for one have every receipt for anything I've bought for this bike including little things like oil, filters, fuel additives, tools for working on it etc etc. I must have a folder about 2" thick of parts and service receipts for this bike. I still have all my fuel receipts for the road trip I took 2 years ago down to Florida lol.

stuart.

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Solina Dave
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Solina Dave » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:51 pm

redial wrote:Any input to consider is the service records - if they have been kept!



You're absolutely correct Len. That would be the very best that one could hope for. Good indicators, for me at least, are the sellers personality, do they give off an honest vibe, their enthusiasm toward motorcycling, and their knowledge of the motorcycle that's for sale, the condition of their shop, and most certainly their record keeping of service done to the motorcycle.

Just for the record..................Dave
"Assume Nothing"

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Solina Dave
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Location: Solina, Ontario, Canada
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!977 Honda CB550F (my 1st motorcycle)

Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Solina Dave » Wed Feb 25, 2015 9:11 pm

Ha! Ha! I do the same thing Stuart. Complete records for everything, in detail. I might even have you beat. I keep a close record of my fuel consumption on trips, and also day to day for the entire riding season. I think I might need a life! Motorcycling, like it is with you obviously, is a huge factor in my life. I hope it's not the only one.

Bring on lower gas prices...............Dave
"Assume Nothing"

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roadwanderer2
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby roadwanderer2 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 10:15 pm

Solina Dave wrote:Ha! Ha! I do the same thing Stuart. Complete records for everything, in detail. I might even have you beat. I keep a close record of my fuel consumption on trips, and also day to day for the entire riding season. I think I might need a life! Motorcycling, like it is with you obviously, is a huge factor in my life. I hope it's not the only one.

Bring on lower gas prices...............Dave


my ride down to Florida was almost 900 miles, and for the entire trip after adding up my fuel receipts, I used less than $75.00 in fuel one way. I have other factors in my life besides my motorcycle, I have my wife, my home, our 2 cats, and my friends. other than hitting the lottery, my life couldn't be any better.

good nite my fellow riders and friends,

stuart.

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Kimber45
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Kimber45 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 12:13 pm

I just bought a 1980 GL1100 and when I went to get it tagged the mileage was marked "exempt" because of the age. I have on idea how many miles it has.
1980 gl1100
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:42 pm

Carfax gets its mileage/accident/repair records from both DMV as well as many participating dealer/repair shops.

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Solina Dave
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Solina Dave » Thu Feb 26, 2015 5:01 pm

Just a thought, but Wikipedia says that CarFax was founded in 1984. I'm thinking that maybe that would seriously compromise the data base, in regards to pre-1984 vehicle mileage accuracy.
"Assume Nothing"

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Fatboy46
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Re: Is it high mileage, or low mileage?

Postby Fatboy46 » Sat Jan 23, 2016 2:59 pm

Maintenance records are king. no records-assume nothing was done properly and price accordingly. Especially the timing belts. maybe they were changed regularly-maybe the oil was changed regularly? was the brake/clutch fluid changed and flushed? axles lubed? bearings checked? Some things you can look at and tell. dirty on the outside doesnt mean poor maint. on the INSIDE- but it is a consideration- just as a perfectly clean 1984 could mean leaks cleaned off to hide the fact that gaskets need replacing. Maintenance records ADD VALUE. Keep yours up to date. Sadly, widows don't always know that and great records are lost. I know used bike dealers that don't ask, because they would rather pay less- they aren't going to keep it or warranty it. one of the reasons CAR dealers throw away the owner books and manuals- no contacting the previous owner to find out why they traded/sold it.
CARFAX is a joke. it works ONLY if anything was ever reported- AND REPORTED CORRECTLY. Professional mechanics or experienced owners that do their own work can tell if a bike has been cared for or just ridden and washed. on the other side- you cannot pay too much for a GOOD USED bike!!Especially a HONDA.




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