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Since getting the new 2010RT I have almost totally ignored my '87 Harley. I can't say that I have missed riding it too much either. So, I am thinking seriously of getting it detailed and selling it this Spring.

Is it usual practice to allow a potential buyer of your used motorcycle to take it for a test ride or not? I did not test ride the HD when I bought it but did of course start it up and thoroughly check it out. I am not too comfortable with allowing someone I do not know and of unknown motorcycling experience to hop on my HD and take it for a spin. Would you expect to test ride someone's bike if you were considering buying it? I envision a lot of problems getting restitution in the event of an accident or drop.

Regards,
 

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If your not comfortable letting some one ride it then don't.....to be honest about it; if you do let them on for a test spin, ask to see there MC endorsement on their drivers licence. Your insurance isn't going to cover anything if they don't have that endorsement..........

$0.02.............. :cool:
 

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You could also ask your insurance company if they would cover someone you let take a test drive. I would be carefull but a serious buyer is going to want to take a test drive.
 

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I've never allowed a potential buyer ride any of my bikes I've sold. I figure that's just part of the deal. They car start it, sit on it, inspect the service records, etc. etc... but not ride it. Too much at stake.
 

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Either take them for a ride on the back (them on the back not you). Or ask them to leave a full CASH deposit. If they ride off and don't come back your insurance will not pay out as you gave them the keys. And don't move more than an arms length from the keys. I sometimes leave my chain on to stop a ride off.
 

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I sold many bikes and never allowed a test ride. I do offer to take it to a dealer of their choice to have it checked. They would be asked to pay for the inspection, if they buy it I'll subtract it from the price.
 

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Insurance WILL cover the theft of the bike, even if you gave them the key. If you did not tell them it was OK to take the bike and not come back, it is considered a theft.

I let the eventual buyer of one of my bikes ride it around the neighborhood. Seemed a capable rider. Left a friend and vehicle behind. I also test rode a bike for a friend who didn't have a lot of experience. I convinced the seller to let me go up the road and back to be sure that it shifted into all gears. I'd say it depends on who you're dealing with. If you get a bad feeling, don't do it.
 

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I bought a Goldwing from an ad on the Goldwing forum.
I rode to his place on Kawa Nomad with my wife on the back.
He had a couple of BMWs and he had no problem letting me take it around the neighborhood.
I sold a V-Strom recently to a guy from Yuma.
He owns a Goldwing also and came with a friend in a truck. I let him go around the neighborhood. Even volunteered to ride with him,(separate bikes), to show him a good road. He declined. Said it wasn't necessary.
I guess it depends a lot on the potential buyer. What he currently rides, properly licensed, attitude, etc.
Guess there isn't a hard line to follow. I never thought I'd let someone ride something I was selling.
I would never buy something without riding also.
Perhaps having a contract filled out prior to allowing someone to ride is the way to go.
 

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I agree with Lawrence, no test ride, and I have sold a few bikes over the years. Around here any dealer will require that you sign liability release paperwork before you can do a test ride.
If someone rides your bike, and gets injured, or worse, are you legally responsible? Lots of Law Schools in New England.

MF
 

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Mick-F said:
I agree with Lawrence, no test ride, and I have sold a few bikes over the years. Around here any dealer will require that you sign liability release paperwork before you can do a test ride.
If someone rides your bike, and gets injured, or worse, are you legally responsible? Lots of Law Schools in New England.

MF
When I test rode a HD and Voyager last year, I had to sign a release, but the BMW dealer didn't even ask for my license.
 

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Nope. No ride. Inspect, check, fire it up, sit on it, etc. But NO ride, endorsement or not. How many bikes are sold sight unseen except for a photo or 2 on the internet?? They give you a deposit of the full sale price then OK. Otherwise--are you crazy?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks guys. That's the information I was looking for and you all gave some useful ways to handle it. My Harley is is great condition, is almost 25 years old, and parts can be difficult to get! Having not bought or sold a used bike for some time I was curious as to what the customary procedure is.

BTW, my BMW dealer did make a copy of my license and I did sign a form before taking my RT for a test ride!

Regards,
 

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No test rides. Tellers check in hand to the seller, bring it back within 20 minutes if you don't like it. That's how I bought my RT. That's how I'll sell it.
 

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heavynikonf3 said:
Nope. No ride. Inspect, check, fire it up, sit on it, etc. But NO ride, endorsement or not. How many bikes are sold sight unseen except for a photo or 2 on the internet?? They give you a deposit of the full sale price then OK. Otherwise--are you crazy?
I bought one over the net. Never again!
If I can't ride it, I am not buying it. (Unless it is brand new)Period.
 

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deanwoolsey said:
No test rides. Tellers check in hand to the seller, bring it back within 20 minutes if you don't like it. That's how I bought my RT. That's how I'll sell it.
Coming back to bikes two years ago the owner let me ride his 06 around the neighborhood for a quick spin. (I only stalled it twice). Then he and I went on a 20 mile round trip ride (he had a Harley to ride) together. Ended up not buying the bike because I was not ready. A month later I bought an 07 without a test ride since the owner would not let me do that. The bike had low miles, the guy was solid, the price was right...............and I was ready. No regrets whatsoever.

But if I was to sell my baby (and I am most definitely NOT ready to do that), I would probably follow the dean's method. Seems like the best way to spread the risk around to all parties. You drive my bike...............I hold your cashiers check.
 

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This subject has been discussed many times over the years and I find it interesting. The interesting part is the diversity which is often associated (correlated?) with where the poster is located. People in less urban areas often favor the test ride, people in urban area often do not allow them.

I have bought and sold a lot of bikes. I generally would not buy one unless I could test ride it. I have sold with no test ride but have never actually denied one.

I have often ridden with a potential buyer on his bike as he tested mine. I have asked for a deposit in the form of his keys if he is riding my bike. Never had someone say no to that. When I lived in Houston many for sale ads in the paper said "No test rides".

Here in Utah test rides are the norm, but then there is the "local" culture thing going on. Very trusting.

Good luck on the sale.
 

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Its a 1987 bike. Two questions for you: 1. Would you buy it without riding it? 2. What is the absolute worst thing that could happen?

The worst thing is that they wreck it. Well, make sure they have a full coverage policy on their current vehicle and that they have the correct endorsement and let them at it. If they are in a wreck, its their insurance that will be responsible.
 

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cliffy109 said:
Its a 1987 bike. Two questions for you: 1. Would you buy it without riding it? 2. What is the absolute worst thing that could happen?

The worst thing is that they wreck it. Well, make sure they have a full coverage policy on their current vehicle and that they have the correct endorsement and let them at it. If they are in a wreck, its their insurance that will be responsible.
The buyer's insurance will not cover the loss unless the sales transaction is already completed. The owner's insurance would cover in the case of a test ride.
 

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I never buy without taking a test ride, but I arrange that before going out.

I let a buyer make a test ride if they come up on a motorcycle the same size or bigger AND I am holding their DL. They can either do it there on the street or we go to a big parking lot. Otherwise, I will ride it and let them follow to see how well it tracks, stops etc.
 

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GRB60 said:
The buyer's insurance will not cover the loss unless the sales transaction is already completed. The owner's insurance would cover in the case of a test ride.
Incorrect. If you have full coverage insurance, you are covered in/on whatever vehicle you are driving. If you rent a car, you are covered. If you borrow a car, you are covered. If you test drive one, you are covered. A dealership should make you sign a form that forces you to recognize this, but its still the case.
 
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