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Sportster Models 883, 883 Custom, 1200 Custom, 883L, 1200L, 1200S, 1200 Roadster, XR1200, and the Nightster.
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  #1  
Old 08-11-2009, 08:19 AM
Steve380 Steve380 is offline
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Default If a Bike has Been Sitting Unridden for a While...

I haven't ridden or owned a bike for many years and am about to jump back in. I'm buying a 2005 Sportster Low with 800 miles. It hasn't been ridden since 2006 and that was the last time it was serviced. Tags have been expired since August 2007. It's still with the original owner and has been garaged since new and looks like it's right off the showroom floor. Mods include forward controls and Python 2 into 1 pipes. I'm hoping someone may be able to tell me if it's likely that the engine or fork seals may be bad from sitting up so long? First stop is to get an oil change, inspection, etc. For the record, it's $4500 and also includes a bobtail fender kit which hasn't been installed yet, new battery and an HD FXRG leather jacket. Any help / advice would be appreciated!!!
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Old 08-11-2009, 08:33 AM
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old skool1983 old skool1983 is offline
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thats a tough one, the price is right for sure but a bike that has been sittin for 3 years is likely to have more than one gasket problem, if ya have to replace the rocker gaskets, maybe the primary, cam cover, yr only lookin at 50-60 bucks in gaskets (if ya do it yrself) but if one of the jugs is leakin at the base well unless ya know how to tear down yr engine that might be one expensive gasket repair....couple hundred bucks IF ya take it to an indy NOT harley. also, ask him if during the 3 years it sat if he routenly started it, let it get to runnin temp then shut her down. if he didn't ride it but he at least did that out is good

i would ask the guy if you could test ride it, take it up to HD and pay to have it service before you buy it and while on yr way up there take a small 150 mile detor

what was wrong with the guy that owned that bike???? ABUSE ABUSE ABUSE!!!!!! what a horrible man to let a bike sit that long.
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Old 08-11-2009, 08:56 AM
drum412 drum412 is offline
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Well best thing to do is put new fluid in, and start her up and take it for a spin. I wouldn't worry too much about gasket issues right off the bat, they'll be pretty obvious if and when they start to leak, and just replace and repair as needed. I've fixed up a number of old bikes in the past, one of which sat outside by a guy's apple tree for 13 years,....and all i did was change the oil, new battery.....and the bike ran perfect with no issues other than a layer of moss over the entire bike. But if he stored the bike indoors, it'll most likely be just fine.
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Old 08-11-2009, 10:17 AM
Steve380 Steve380 is offline
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Thanks for the replies! Hope it's ok for the new guy to be asking for help right out of the chute :-) His story is he dumped a another bike (I hope) not too long after he got this one and had some hand injuries or something. Then he got re-married last December and the new bride won't let him keep it..
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Old 08-11-2009, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve380 View Post
Thanks for the replies! Hope it's ok for the new guy to be asking for help right out of the chute :-) His story is he dumped a another bike (I hope) not too long after he got this one and had some hand injuries or something. Then he got re-married last December and the new bride won't let him keep it..
me and her wouldn't have got married!!! LOL!

Their are others more qualified than me but, I'd ask the guy to pay for a service and then just ride the $hit out of it!

later,
J
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Old 08-11-2009, 10:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by old skool1983 View Post
thats a tough one, the price is right for sure but a bike that has been sittin for 3 years is likely to have more than one gasket problem, if ya have to replace the rocker gaskets, maybe the primary, cam cover, yr only lookin at 50-60 bucks in gaskets (if ya do it yrself) but if one of the jugs is leakin at the base well unless ya know how to tear down yr engine that might be one expensive gasket repair....couple hundred bucks IF ya take it to an indy NOT harley. also, ask him if during the 3 years it sat if he routenly started it, let it get to runnin temp then shut her down. if he didn't ride it but he at least did that out is good

i would ask the guy if you could test ride it, take it up to HD and pay to have it service before you buy it and while on yr way up there take a small 150 mile detor

Big +1 here, specially the detour part Just give the bike a good warm up period when taking her out for the test ride and take it easy on her (the poor girl hasn't been ridden in a while). Ride it for as long as the guy will let you take it for and come back and see if there's any leakage. Even if there is, that is a steal of a price.
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Old 08-11-2009, 11:05 AM
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^^
That.
Put some fresh gas in her, check the oil to make sure it looks OK, then take her out. For that price, if gaskets start leaking, replace as needed.
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Old 08-11-2009, 11:13 AM
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If you do buy it, run some SeaFoam through the fuel system. Just follow the instuctions on the can.
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Old 08-11-2009, 01:45 PM
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Hello. Here's my story that is sort of similar to yours. Hope it helps.

In June of 2008, I bought a 2004 XL883 that had only 727 miles on it, and had sat in a garage since shortly after it was purchased by the previous owner. I didn't take a test ride, but I saw the PO ride it so I was pretty sure it was in good running order, and the bike looked almost brand new.

I purchased it and changed the fluids, checked the plugs and the belt and tension. The bike ran really well, except for an intermittent backfiring problem which was solved by adjusting the idle mixture screw.

The only performance mod it had was a Screaming Eagle Stage I air cleaner kit.

The bike now has about 11,000 miles on it and so far, so good.

I hope your purchase works out as well for you should you decide to make it.
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Old 08-11-2009, 01:52 PM
fixedmlc fixedmlc is offline
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Buy it, change oil and trans fluids, give it a good look-over, then ride it!
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Old 08-11-2009, 01:52 PM
 
 
 
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awhile, bicycle, bike, check, clean, harley, hasnt, ironhead, repairs, ridden, running, seafoam, sitting, sportster, unridden, years


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