1 TOP TIPS 9new
Always check the paperwork. Yes, this is stock advice, but people still ignore it. The V5 contains the name and address of the registered keeper, the make and model of the bike, its colour, its registration number, its engine number and its chassis number
2Any undeclared crashes?
Check the lock stops on the frame. A crashed bike can be repaired, but damaged lock stops are next to impossible to repair invisibly. On aluminium frames they can even be bashed out of the headstock altogether. Mangled lock stops mean the bike’s had a hard impact, and that could mean that while the front end looks straight, the frame itself is bent. Make it one of your key checks when you are inspecting a potential purchase.
3What’s under those stickers?
Is the bodywork plastered with stickers? Quite a few limitededition race replicas and special editions carry extra graphics, but a load of extra stickers that have evidently been applied by the owner frequently conceal bodywork damage. Those green Monster ones seem particularly popular for this. Ask the seller if you can peel off one or two. If he objects, you can be pretty sure there’s a dented tank or a cracked fairing underneath.
4Has it popped its seals?
A lot of manufacturers these days fit fork guards as standard, and a few even still fit rubber gaiters to protect the stanchions and the seals from grime which can cause damage, but even if the stanchion isn’t pitted, seals can pop. Lift up the dust seals and have a look at What Lies Beneath. Oh, wow! Cotton wool soaking up all the leaking oil. Knock the price down at the very least. Remember that leaking oil seals mean an MOT failure.