Buying a used VStar 650 Classic - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-13-2010, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Question Buying a used VStar 650 Classic

Hello, I'm glad I found this forum. I've put a hold on a used 2005 VStar 650 Classic and I'll be picking it up Tuesday. It's my first "real" motorcycle although I've been riding scooters for a few years.

The bike looks to be in great shape. I followed a guide for inspecting used motorcycles here: It has 28k miles which I understand is a little high but the bike shows no signs of being crashed or dropped hard. (A little scuffing on the crash bars)

A few things did bother me though and I wanted to run them by the folks here since you've probably seen a lot more VStars than I have. The area around the key ignition looks like it's missing something and I can see wires exposed behind. Something to worry about? I found a part that might be what I'm looking for, they call it "neck trim" . There is also some wiring exposed behind where the license plate would go (just above the brake light housing) but I assume that would be covered up by the license plate mounting. Should I worry about taking additional steps to prevent rain from entering?

The price is $2,900 which seems incredibly reasonable to me. It took the guy 3 times hitting the ignition before the bike started cold but I don't think he had the choke out. Once it started it stayed strong and sounded fine.

Thanks for any experience you can share. I appreciate the input.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 09:15 AM
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Location: Ontario Canada
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The 650 is a great little bike. I had one as my first bike and its still around as its my mothers ride now. IT has almost 40,000MILES on it now. The neck of the bike is supposed to have a two piece cover that covers the wiring (its just a plastic clam shell that bolts onto the frame from both sides). The wiring out back is xposed in the area ya mentioned but i have had no issues with it on mine.

It is not a overly powerful bike but it can take ya pretty much anywere and even with its 40,000miles i would not hesitate taking it on any trip. And most carbed bikes take a couple stabs after sitting over lengthly periods of time. Even my last bike wich was fuel injected would take a couple tryes to get going after the winter. Then again if the choke was not used it be hard to start cold.

As for price i cant help ya much bikes are priced very different he in canada so its hard to say.

If a have any other mechanical side of things i can help ya i been wrenching on this thing now for for 7 years or so, I VERY comfy with working on it. Only real issues i have had with the bike is. First the fuel pet cock failed, next the rear wheel hub the bearings came loose in the hub so i got a new rear wheel from the local scrap yard, And lastly 5th gear on mine is going as it whines now in fifth but gona ride it out and yank it apart next winter i put in a used motor and trans if needed.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 09:49 AM
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Welcome to the board! You obviously have done your homework with the research on what to look for. My suggestion is not to fall in love with any bike. Keep emotions out of it as there are tons of bikes for sale. Personally I would be a little leary of the start and would go back several times to see how it started. You never mentioned how it rode. I would recommend a test ride; NEVER BUY WITHOUT A TEST RIDE!! One bike I was looking from a dealer and test rode it. It died twice on me with out warning. First time was when I was pulling out into traffic. Once warmed up it ran ok but I did not buy it.

Also if you have a friend that knows bikes and is willing to help I would suggest that. I was ready to buy a bike last year and a friend of mine looked it over and test rode it. He was able to point out a few things that it needed. Long story short I did not buy it.

What I did buy after a long search(my friend looked at most of them) was a 2002 Vstar 1100 with 2900 miles on it for just over 4 grand.

Keep us posted!

Ride Free Live United
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 03:54 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comments guys. I really appreciate it and I feel better about the few small concerns I had. The miles seem less significant and the plastic case around the key sounds easy enough to replace.

BG Hawks, I sat on the bike and gave it a little throttle in neutral but they wanted to see the cash before I could test ride. I'm going back Tuesday morning with a cashier's check but...

I'm starting to have second thoughts about this particular bike although the VStar is definitely where my focus is. I'm still going back Tuesday to ask the re-seller some questions and if I'm still feeling a bit uncomfortable there will always be another bike for sale somewhere else. I'm starting to get concerned because I remembered the guy saying it had a salvage title. I didn't think much of it at the time but the more I research the more worried I am. As I said, the bike looked to be in excellent condition with just a scratched windshield and scuffed crash bar. It sounded fine to me too. When I test ride it Tuesday I'll run it through all the gears and see if I notice anything... but I'm not a mechanic by any means so I'm thinking maybe I should just run away from this one.

I'll keep you updated. Thanks again.


Last edited by ScooterKev; 03-14-2010 at 03:58 PM.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 06:05 PM
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Definately keep us posted! Salvage could mean lots of things; just follow your head and not your heart. You want a bike that you trust.

Got mine out today and road a couple of miles; first time since November. Still quite abit of sand on the road which can make it interesting.

Ride Free Live United
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 06:40 PM
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I would never buy a bike or ??? if I could not take it for a test drive, even if it for a good price. If you have your endorsment and they still want cash before you can test ride the bike, I might be very concerned. Like maybe there is something wrong with the way it handles and the reseller does not you to find befoe he has his money. Just my 2 cents worth.


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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 07:10 PM
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Go with a cashiers check but don't endorse it until you come back from a good roadtest. If they refuse to let you test ride it without endorsing the check, insist on talking to the owner and if he refuses walk away from them. I'm telling you they'll call you in a few days because times are hard and motorcycle sale aren't very good. While you're at it tell them that you want an extended warranty at no cost to you. Don't be affraid to push and bully them a little, like I said times are hard and it is buyers market.

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 08:47 PM
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Salvage Title

Doesn't the Salvage title mean the bike was wrecked, bought from the insurance comapny and repaired?

If so I would not buy it.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 09:23 PM
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the wires that are exposed are supposed to be there. I thought it a strange design myself the first time I saw it. I have seen these bikes with as many as 100000 miles with no issues sor 40k should not be an issue. Parts for it are cheap and mods are easy to do.

take it for a nice long run and take it home
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-14-2010, 09:31 PM
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I've read the threads on your original and it seems to me that with every response there's more info on the bike. I was in the car business for 24 years and a salvage title can mean many things. It usually means to me that there was enough of an insurance claim that the claim paid out the value of the could mean a stolen bike that was paid out and then recovered up to a full damage writeoff with only the vin # saved, and this is a conglomerate of several bikes rolled into one....hard to tell without some real history. In my experience the seller should want you to try the bike.....if there is nothing wrong you'll have a good ride. I assume that the bike is licenced or the seller has a plate that can be used legally. In B.c. is't a Dplate registered to dealers or a 1 day permit. I used a 1 day permit when buying my 1600 Silverado last fall. Full collision and comprehensive on the bike plus what's the problem?? anyway I agree with DMTJOY... the seller should be more open.....anyway good already said...there's lots more bikes out there..don't comprimise.....Ride long
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