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Old 12-07-2009, 02:53 PM   #1
AndreaJ200
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How to know if you are getting a good deal on first bike?

Saw an ad for a bike for sale - 2004 FZ6 for $1500. 29k miles. Price sounds too good to be true.

What do I need to look for when purchasing a used bike? What questions do I need to ask, etc.


What is a salvage title?
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Old 12-07-2009, 02:56 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndreaJ200 View Post


What is a salvage title?
This means that the bike has been wrecked. Sometimes this means its been just laid over, and the insurance company totalled it. Sometimes its more serious. In order to legally ride the bike on the street again you would have to get a DPS inspection of the vehicle (way more thorough than your yearly inspection).
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Old 12-07-2009, 02:57 PM   #3
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if it sounds to good to be true, it prolly is
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:02 PM   #4
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They guy said its been rebuilt and there is nothing wrong with it engine wise. He doesn't know if its been inspected - he bought it with the salvage title.
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:06 PM   #5
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I asked him if he had the DPS inspection to get proof its safe and roadworhty and his response was "yeah thats good too". The tags are good, but that doesn't mean it's safe right? Or does it?
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndreaJ200 View Post
They guy said its been rebuilt and there is nothing wrong with it engine wise. He doesn't know if its been inspected - he bought it with the salvage title.
If it had been inspected.............it wouldn't still have a salvage title. It'd have a rebuilt title. As a first bike, I'd shy away. I know the price is right, but you're not well equipped to judge a quality repair job. If you can convince the seller to bring the bike to a place like Motorcycles Unlimited to have THEM look it over before buying...maybe. Odds are its probably not the deal it seems.
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:44 PM   #7
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ill agree with everyone above. But ill add this, if u dont get that ' I have to have THIS bike' feeling, then dont get it. Otherwise, youll see other bikes after u buy one and be like, 'hmm, that might have been a smarter choice'. Especially a year+ later when you become more familiar and educated with sport bikes.....

I bought a bike last year and sold it a week later cuz i just didnt 'dig' it as much anymore. Common sense im sure tells you, a bike is harder to return then a pair of jeans u dont like as much after u get home.


Also being a female, as a rule of thumb, and unless ur a mechanic too....Dont buy something rebuilt. Cosmetic only damage can be ok, but you want something reliable that you dont have to spend another chunk of money on 5 months down the road (and if u dont have a handy mechanic man friend, shops can get pretty pricey/ same with cars).... Just sayin

If possible, have a good, educated, trustworthy guy friend go with u to check out the bike with u! I have references if u need


*if u have any other questions, feel free to message me...some of these men are full of hot air, and some are punks. If i dont know the answer, I guarantee that i know someone that does

good luck sweetie!
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by po-po 5.0 View Post
If it had been inspected.............it wouldn't still have a salvage title. It'd have a rebuilt title. As a first bike, I'd shy away. I know the price is right, but you're not well equipped to judge a quality repair job. If you can convince the seller to bring the bike to a place like Motorcycles Unlimited to have THEM look it over before buying...maybe. Odds are its probably not the deal it seems.
it would not just be a rebuilt title. it will still be a salvage title till the day it dies, it will just say salvage rebuilt. even if it was rebuilt back to perfect, it will always have the diminished value of a salvage title bike.

see the bike in person, take pictures, post them on here and we will discuss. or take the bike to someone like Motorcycles Unlimited.
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Trav View Post
it would not just be a rebuilt title. it will still be a salvage title till the day it dies, it will just say salvage rebuilt. even if it was rebuilt back to perfect, it will always have the diminished value of a salvage title bike.

see the bike in person, take pictures, post them on here and we will discuss. or take the bike to someone like Motorcycles Unlimited.
i didnt read ALL of the above...but someone could have salvaged it... and themselves or someone else could have rebuilt it and just left the title as salvaged...no?
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:00 PM   #10
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I dont know of a bank that will loan on a salvage title either. In case you were going that route.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:01 PM   #11
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Once declared a salvage its a salvage. You can even get a blue title with salvage on it.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:02 PM   #12
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Something to keep in mind is that a bike is a vehicle just like a car. We know that if you go buy the cheapest car you can find it's gonna be a POS.
Another thought might be to take a look at what Motorcycles Unlimited has for sale or what Patrick can find in your price range. Then you have some assurance that it is reliable transportation and a decent value .
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Once declared a salvage its a salvage. You can even get a blue title with salvage on it.
I have one and an off topic tip:
If you are going to use a salvage titled bike as a track ONLY bike you can, when you transfer the title have it transferred as an "Offroad Only" bike and then it only costs like $35 (no presumptive value tax).
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Last edited by bumblebee; 12-07-2009 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bumblebee View Post
I have one and an off topic tip:
If you are going to use a salvage titled bike as a track ONLY bike you can, when you transfer the title have it transferred as an "Offraod Only" bike and then it only costs like $35 (no presumptive value tax).
i have several. its just a "remark" on the title, and to most it doesnt mean much... but to KBB and the buyers market, a salvage title significantly diminishes the value.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:28 PM   #15
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I believe it is Louisiana, but in some state, after 5 years of having a rebuilt title with no infractions, you can convert back to a clear title.

I don't remember which state, but it is close to Texas, and it was 5 years with a rebuilt title.

Anyways, you can just take the bike to Motorcycles Unlimited. They inspect used bikes free before you buy.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:38 PM   #16
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I was in your shoes 3 months ago looking for my first bike. Personally, I would not go for a salvaged title no matter how good it looks, thats just me.

There are some deals out there that are "too good to be true" and the only way to figure out if it is or not is to have someone who knows what he/she is doing look at it -- this is where Motorcycles Unlimited steps in. They will do a visual inspection and even test drive a bike for you. They did that on my ninja before I bought it.

I was about to buy another bike for 900$ but it had 20k miles on it and had carb problems but looked pristine. Would have cost me +- 500$ to fix it up. I went with the ninja because for 1600 it didnt look too good cosmetically but only had 3.5k miles (lots of life left).

post up what the deal is and im sure people over here won't mind judging.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:45 PM   #17
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There is quite a bit of mis-information in this thread. To those who commented on salvage titles; based on the info above, I would say most have not actually dealt with salvage titles.

A few corrections:
1) A "salvage title" doesn't exist. A "salvage certificate" exists and serves as a temporary title until the bike is re-registered. The title does not stay as a salvage title when registered. It becomes a regular TX title with a statement in the remarks section of the title that typically states "previously rebuilt XX salvage". The XX will reference the state in which the vehicle was previously issued a salvage certificate.

2) The bike can not stay with the salvage certificate when re-registered. It will come back as regular TX title with remarks as mentioned above.

3) A bike with a "salvage certificate" does not require inspection per the DPS, only inspection through the local State Inspection Station, and a green sheet if purchased from out of state.

4) For the first transfer from Salvage Certificate to regular TX title, there are no taxes to be paid. There is a one time Salvage rebuild fee and there are additional forms to be completed. But no taxes based on 80%FMV.

5) Most banks will loan on a previously rebuilt title (referenced the same as regular TX title). I have heard from some that certain banks / CUs will not, but have never known anyone who actually experienced this. I do not believe that any bank will loan on a Salvage Certificate. (see comments above regarding Salvage vs TX title, previously rebuilt).

6) Certain states can issue Salvage Certificate, and then the vehicle can be rebult in that state and re-titled. Then when the vehicle is titled in TX come back as clean TX title with no comments in the remarks section (i.e. completely clean title). Theis is a whole topic unto itself.

7) The fact that a bike was previously rebuilt does not automatically diminish the value. Now I will admit that some people who rebuild bikes (or cars for that matter) have no business rebuilding vehicles, there are a lot of folks out there who do a very good job and put the bikes back together right. There are also some folks whose bikes, which were never salvaged, are in much worse shapes than others. It is all about the care taken on the specific vehicle. I would not pass on a "previously rebuilt" bike just because of that statement on the title. Inspect it closely and make an educated decision.

As a person with a bunch of experience with rebuilds, I would certainly be willing to look at the bike (if it makes sense from a logistics standpoint).
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:58 PM   #18
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once a salvage title, always a salvage title at least in the "remarks" section. and according to KBB and some others, it does diminish the value. however, to most people, if it was rebuilt correctly, the salvage remark doesn't matter.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:59 PM   #19
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in this case, on an 04 yamaha fz6, as with many bikes, it shouldnt matter. on a 2010 ducati, it would make a large difference.
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Old 12-07-2009, 05:00 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKS_Racing View Post
There is quite a bit of mis-information in this thread. To those who commented on salvage titles; based on the info above, I would say most have not actually dealt with salvage titles.

A few corrections:
1) A "salvage title" doesn't exist. A "salvage certificate" exists and serves as a temporary title until the bike is re-registered. The title does not stay as a salvage title when registered. It becomes a regular TX title with a statement in the remarks section of the title that typically states "previously rebuilt XX salvage". The XX will reference the state in which the vehicle was previously issued a salvage certificate.

2) The bike can not stay with the salvage certificate when re-registered. It will come back as regular TX title with remarks as mentioned above.

3) A bike with a "salvage certificate" does not require inspection per the DPS, only inspection through the local State Inspection Station, and a green sheet if purchased from out of state.

4) For the first transfer from Salvage Certificate to regular TX title, there are no taxes to be paid. There is a one time Salvage rebuild fee and there are additional forms to be completed. But no taxes based on 80%FMV.

5) Most banks will loan on a previously rebuilt title (referenced the same as regular TX title). I have heard from some that certain banks / CUs will not, but have never known anyone who actually experienced this. I do not believe that any bank will loan on a Salvage Certificate. (see comments above regarding Salvage vs TX title, previously rebuilt).

6) Certain states can issue Salvage Certificate, and then the vehicle can be rebult in that state and re-titled. Then when the vehicle is titled in TX come back as clean TX title with no comments in the remarks section (i.e. completely clean title). Theis is a whole topic unto itself.

7) The fact that a bike was previously rebuilt does not automatically diminish the value. Now I will admit that some people who rebuild bikes (or cars for that matter) have no business rebuilding vehicles, there are a lot of folks out there who do a very good job and put the bikes back together right. There are also some folks whose bikes, which were never salvaged, are in much worse shapes than others. It is all about the care taken on the specific vehicle. I would not pass on a "previously rebuilt" bike just because of that statement on the title. Inspect it closely and make an educated decision.

As a person with a bunch of experience with rebuilds, I would certainly be willing to look at the bike (if it makes sense from a logistics standpoint).
^^^^ This man knows what hes saying and know his away around bike. I am friends with his son and have seen many of the bike they have rebuilt and even asked if they were ever rebuilt b/c of the militiculas time effort and value they put into restoring them. I am not trying to talk him up but if the bike is in houston and you dont know alot abotu them and what to look for... bring the bike to Motorcycles Unlimited, or AKS_Racing
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