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Purchasing a motorcycle can be an exciting time, especially if you’re new to the whole motorcycle scene. It can also be a bit overwhelming if you don’t know exactly what to look for.
It is not the same as buying any other vehicle, but buying a motorcycle is different. There are additional things you’ll need to be aware of because of the type of vehicle they are and because of their susceptibility compared to other vehicles.
Do I have to buy a motorcycle that’s been abandoned? You are allowed to buy a motorcycle that has been abandoned, even if the main consequence is usually cosmetic. Ask the seller to clarify their meaning. “drop” You should look out for signs that the motorcycle was dragged, rather than dropped.
Often times you’ll hear people say that a dropped motorcycle should always be avoided when looking for one to buy. It isn’t true. Some sellers might be deceitful about what they mean by “sales”. “dropped” There are certain signs that can be used to determine if the motorcycle is damaged further.
What Happens When A Motorcycle Is Dropped And Why It’s Okay
I’d like to think of myself as a well-seasoned motorcyclist. Not only have I been riding for a while, I’ve also restored over twelve motorcycles and I’ve been able to get to know the mechanics and structure of how motorcycles work.
Despite my extensive experience, I’ve never lost a motorcycle. It was a surprise to me that my father-in law, who is also a Harley-Davidson rider, had also fallen from his motorcycle. My brother-in law has done the same. My best friend is also a brother-in-law.
I am implying that the possibility of crashing a motorcycle can be quite common. Many people believe that dropping a motorcycle can cause damage to it and that it will never work again. This is not true. According to my father-in-law, a saying I believe holds true is “The Law of Attraction.” “There’s two types of motorcyclists: one who has dropped their motorcycle and one who is going to drop their motorcycle.”
Assuming the motorcycle was quickly picked up after the drop, there’s actually minimal damage that happens to it. The majority of damage to the motorcycle is cosmetic and can be repaired without affecting its function.
Some common cosmetic issues you’ll run into with a dropped motorcycle are a scratched crankcase, broken/bent mirrors, a bent handlebar, bent foot pegs, scratched/broken fairings, a dented tank, and a scratched exhaust pipe.
Although these cosmetic problems can be frustrating to address, they don’t really impact the way the motorcycle rides or hurts the mechanics going on inside. You can usually still safely ride your motorcycle after a drop if you don’t mind the few scratches that may have happened.
Most of the motorcycles I bought to restore had been dropped and I didn’t have any issues with them. Since I was already planning on restoring them, the cosmetic issues weren’t much of a problem because I was planning on fixing everything anyway.
I have found that most of these cosmetic issues are pretty simple to fix yourself if you’re willing to take the time to learn. It is possible to find nearly anything online and have it reinstalled by yourself, such as new exhaust pipes or new handlebars. This is cheaper than buying new exhaust pipes and handlebars, and it will also teach you a new skill.
A scratched crankcase, or a dented gas tank can be repaired by you. Click here to read my article on how you can fix or repaint your motorcycle’s gas tank. A gas tank can be restored to its original glory with some bondo and patience.
Signs The Motorcycle Wasn’t Just Dropped
Unfortunately, some sellers’ definition of “dropped” It can mean something totally different from what you think it is. Generally, the term “dropped” A motorcycle is a bike that was being tipped in a stationary or slow-moving manner.
Some sellers might use the word “dropped” For a motorcycle, if the motorcycle was tipped during a ride at higher speeds. That way they feel like they’re not necessarily omitting the truth. There are a few signs that you can see when you examine the motorcycle to tell if it was dropped or was involved in an accident.
I’m sure I said that even a simple fall can cause scratches. One sign that a motorcycle has been in a serious accident is severe scratches. A simple fall won’t leave such harsh scratches on a bike like this.
If one or both wheels wobble, it is an indication that the motorcycle has been damaged beyond a simple fall. You can easily test this by rolling it forward and backward while it’s off and paying special attention to the reaction of the wheels.
The handlebars and the front wheel should always be parallel. Any wobble can indicate a hard crash, either from the motorcycle hitting something or being rear-ended by someone. Any wobble in your wheels can be a sign of a more serious injury. Be cautious if you do notice it.
Last but not least, take note of how the motorcycle feels when you take it on a ride. If it simply doesn’t feel right, trust your gut and don’t buy it. While a drop of a motorcycle doesn’t cause mechanical damage, a more serious drop and slide or accident can cause such damage. For more information on signs to look out for in the event of a serious motorcycle accident, click here.
How Long Is Too Long For A Motorcycle To Be On It’s Side?
There is a difference between a motorcycle that was dropped and quickly picked up and a motorcycle that was dropped and left on it’s side for a while. Most people who lose their motorcycles will pick it up quickly so there is no damage. However, if a motorcycle is left on it’s side for more than several minutes, that’s when internal issues can start occurring.
Hydrolock is the most likely scenario. Hydrolock is often misunderstood. Many people assume that it can only occur with water. Hydrolock can happen with any type fluid.
The combustion chamber is a small cylindrical chamber that lies inside the engine. This is where gas and air are combined to create a combustion chamber. Your motorcycle will then start to turn. The piston rings can allow oil to seep through and settle in the combustion chamber. If there’s a lot of oil inside the combustion chamber, the spark plug can’t ignite the gas when it gets squirted in because there’s too much material and not enough air.
The nice thing about this is that it’s easily detectable. The motorcycle won’t start if this has happened, so if you’re looking at a motorcycle and it starts chances are it’s not a victim of hydrolock. Click here to see an article I wrote more about what happens when a motorcycle is laid on it’s side.
What will happen to a motorcycle that has been dropped?
If you’re looking at a motorcycle that has been dropped, you may feel like you’re in a tough situation deciding whether or not to go with purchasing it. It is possible to wonder if the motorcycle that was dropped will be the same one as before.
It all depends. It doesn’t matter if the bike was dropped at a very slow pace or in stationary mode. Other than cosmetics, it is safe. These cosmetic issues can be fixed and the motorcycle will look as good or better than new.
You can still fix the motorcycle if it was in an accident. It all depends on how much you or the seller are willing and able to spend.
How can I prevent my motorcycle from falling? To keep the motorcycle from falling over, make sure to always use the kick stand or center stand when you’re not with it. As support, don’t ever lean the motorcycle against anything. You must maintain a safe speed when riding your motorcycle. Avoid gravel and slippery areas.
How can I get a motorcycle back on its feet if it’s tipped over? First, make sure your motorcycle is off before you try to raise it. If possible, make sure that the kick stand is on. Finally, ensure that you and your tires have enough traction to prevent slippage.