What to look for when buying used?

9 replies to this topic
  • icedfusion

Posted January 26, 2006 - 03:41 PM


Thats right,
I have decided that due to my 'mass' 19stone (UK) 280pounds (US) and 6ft6(UK) 2m(US) I want a bike that can handle my weight.

The XR650R fits the bill. I have done alot of research into the matter and have decided to buy this bike.

What I would like to know is, when buying used what are the sort of things that I am looking out for? I have tried to keep it 2002 onwards as I know this is when the clutch bush was upgraded due to the seizing but apart from that what else do I look for????

I am taking a friend along to view these bikes and he suggests I check the engine compression to get a quick overall view of engine. Whilst I do trust his judgement in this area I just wonder what else I should be looking for.


  • pchansen

Posted January 26, 2006 - 04:02 PM


Clutch bushing is no big deal. Don't let a good 2000 or 2001 get away. You can replace this thing in about 15 minutes. Don't forget to purchase a new washer with the little bendable tab thingy. Also for your weight, the best money you can spend is the appropriate spring rates both front and rear.

The best advice I can give is to look for a bike that has been well taken care of. When I bought my 2001, the previous owner had installed a full FMF system without re-jetting the carb. The result was a dangerously lean motor. He couldn't figure out why there wasn't a big increase in performance. Furthermore, the bike tended to boil over. A quick visit to this site and a proper uncorking and WOW! A few dings and scratches here and there shouldn't make a difference. Just make sure you buy from someone who is knowledgable.

Good luck- it's an awesome bike.

  • 2000 xr650r

Posted January 26, 2006 - 04:15 PM


When buying used if the bike has lots of use, i'd do a compression check,otherwise no. A gauge i use to determine hour/ride time is the amount of wear on the engine case covers.

My 2000 i bought uncorked and plated with super low hours. I only paid $2800.

That xr650r will be sure to have the tourqe to get you there and fast. Be carefull, with good traction, that will be a wheelie machine. Mine can carry the front at 50mph++ with no fancy clutch work.

Good luck buying and have fun.

  • XR4DEZ

Posted January 26, 2006 - 05:07 PM


If the bike has a lot of wear it will show on the bottom of the engine case coves, swingarm, skidplate and the rims will seem a little sand blasted if it's a desert bike. Check to see if the airbox is clean and look at the sellers house for indication of how well he takes care of stuff.

  • Phuzzy McPhuzzface

Posted January 26, 2006 - 08:56 PM


What everyone else said.

Also, check:

Is there oil in the coolant?

Is there coolant or water (milky after running) in the oil?

Is antifreeze green, or look like hell? Is it up to the full mark?

Radiators look straight? Signs of leakage? Corrosion?

Is oil recent, and low-mileage? Does it smell burnt?

Do the zerk fittings look like they've ever been used?

Are the sprockets worn, or have misshapen teeth?

Controls or grips drastically worn?

Any signs of layovers or get-offs?

Are fasteners (nuts/bolts/screws) chewed to hell, or does it look like the owner either never removed them, ot used the proper tools to remove/replace them?

Bike should start easily, and idle smoothly. Revving should be free/easy/smooth.

Clutch should engage easily/smoothly, with little to no chatter.

Lighting should be steady (for a bike) and bright. All lamps should work.

Brake rotors should not be worn/scored. Pads should be in good shape.

Ride it. Get it revved up in second/third to upper-mid range, then chop the throttle off fully. Don't crash, but look behind you for signs of oil burning at this point. If you see oil smoke, rings are bad or cylinder is worn.

Look for leaky seals: forks, shifter, rear shock, etc.

Any/all of this will give you a decent idea of the owners treatment/maintenance of the bike. I'm sure there are other comments, too.

Here's some possible helpful links:

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • goblin127

Posted January 26, 2006 - 09:23 PM


Don't be in a hurry and use every thing you have read so far above and the right bike will come along. Then you can tell us all about it.

  • Hayden

Posted January 26, 2006 - 09:43 PM


Just from experience, check the drain plug on the oil and make sure it isnt stripped out. I bought a bike here a while back off of ebay, KLX 650C and the drain plug was stripped. Cant even believe I made it home 1300 miles on the thing without it falling out. Really!!! It was an easy fix but something I wouldnt even think of checking. Think about it, its a part that gets wrenched on very often.


  • skyriver

Posted January 29, 2006 - 11:19 AM


And remember, all the aftermarket stuff is a LOT cheaper if you buy a bike that already has it. My bike had close to $1000 of aftermarket goodies that I would never have done, but now benefit from for not much more than if I bought a stock bike.
Good luck.

  • Johnnyaggro

Posted January 29, 2006 - 11:22 AM


Might as well check for bent rims while your at it.

  • BigBoreRacing

Posted January 29, 2006 - 09:46 PM


Think about it, its a part that gets wrenched on very often.

[COLOR=Red]Or at least it should be lol[/COLOR]

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