Cheap bikes are out there, especially in January
Oh, I like buying bikes in January; Christmas is done and dusted, budgets are sometimes tight, and few are interested in motorcycles.
There was a 17,000-mile oneowner Kawasaki ER-5, the naked street bike that uses the GPZ500S engine, on Fleabay, just a few miles away from me. They’re good bikes – not as sporty as the Honda 500 twin, but just as robust and cheaper.
Starting price was £500. I went to have a look. It had been garaged for 18 months, and the battery wasn’t fighting fit, so it didn’t start.
I mentally budgeted for a new battery, a fuel tank flush and possibly a carb clean, and decided to wait and see if anybody bid on it. Nobody did, so it was offered to me for £400, as I’d bothered to go and look at it.
That’s joining the Sprint ST and the Honda CD200 Benly in the lock-up as the third non-runner I’ve been to buy. The Sprint is running now, and I’m confident the other two will be soon. That’s three very coherent (and wildly different) bikes acquired for a grand total of £1865. Don’t tell me you can’t buy cheap bikes any more.
I didn’t sell the KH100 at the Kempton Park jumble, dammit. A lot of people were cooing over it. A trader bid me the minimum I’d sworn I’d accept, which would have given me a £70 profit, but he wanted the whole V5 without any signing over. As it’s registered in my name, I refused – it’s illegal and, besides, I don’t want to field someone else’s parking tickets (you can probably forget speeding tickets on a KH100).
A private punter then offered me a much better price, which I accepted. He said he’d send a Man Inna Van, and like a fool, I didn’t ask for a deposit. That was the last I ever heard of him. Next time…
An ER-5 for £400? Rude not to...