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Featured Used bike inspections. A way to help out other forum members

Discussion in 'Triumph General Discussion' started by Dozers Dad, Sep 10, 2016.

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  1. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Hi Folks,

    I've had an idea. Don't worry, I intend to treasure it as it's an only child! ;) :)

    I'll attempt to explain & hopefully you'll see what I'm talking about?

    A while ago a mate of mine asked me to keep an eye out for a tidy low mileage MK1 unfaired Suzuki Bandit 1200.
    In the last few months I've spotted a few potentialy suitable examples?However they have normaly been 100's of miles from myself.
    That's not an issue if I could be positive the bike was worth the trip?

    Trouble is, in these situations we have to trust the seller's description & the often ropey photographs. Which could result in a wasted journey if the bike turns out to be crap when we arrive?

    Anyway..... A suitable bike for my mate popped up on Fleabay last week. The advert was pretty short & sweet. The photos weren't great & it's a 600 mile round trip from me! :eek:

    However I had a feeling it might be very close to forum member Mr Orange? I got intouch with him via this fine forum & he kindly agreed to pop round & cast an educated eye over the bike :) I gave him a comprehensive list of things to look for & questions to ask.

    The result was that it checked out as a bike that is worth the trip to Scotland to collect. I've agreed a price with the seller & myself & my mate are off to pick it up next Saturday.
    Without Mr Orange's kind offer of help. I'd have probably kept looking elsewhere?

    So, back to my idea.....

    I'm happy to offer the same service free of charge to any forum member that needs a heads up on a bike within a 20 mile round trip of myself (Northern edge of Northampton)

    I was wondering if any other forum members would be willing to offer the same service? Between us we could cover the entire country without having to go far out of our way to help another forum member?

    Obviously it would be a huge help if you have a reasonable degree of bike related knowledge. If not the potential buyer could always tell you what they want checking & how to check it. You might even learn some useful tips in the process? :)
    Even if the bike is nearly new, mint & low mileage. It may still be worth having somebody take a quick look & ensure the paperwork is all in order? i.e does the service history marry up with the mileage on the old MOT's etc etc?

    It's just an idea but I thought I'd put it out there to get your thoughts?



    PS.... Thank you again Mr Orange. Your a top bloke!
    • Like Like x 14
  2. half ton

    half ton Elite Member

    Oct 18, 2013
    A good idea Jez,The only fly in the ointment for me is I would feel really bad if I said it was a good bike which was then purchased and then problems occurred,
    • Like Like x 4
    • Agree Agree x 2
  3. thebiglad

    thebiglad Old fart, still riding !

    Sep 25, 2013
    Central France
    I think that's a great idea Jez - especially if the take up is big enough. It's not like each volunteering member is going to be involved every week-end is it?
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    #4 Dozers Dad, Sep 10, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2016
    Hi HT,

    I agree mate but it's not like paying a company like the AA or RAC to conduct an inspection. If you did that & the bike was crap you'd have cause for complaint.

    Members can still use such a service if they are happy to pay for it?

    My Idea was more of getting somebody to take a look on the potential buyers behalf. Obviously it would have to be on the basis that the person taking a look couldn't be held to account if the bike had a fault they missed?

    Edit.... The volunteer bike inspector could take close up photos of any marks/damage that may not be visable in the advert photos? Then email them to the potential buyer.
    Off the back of this purchase. I've also found a company online that will carry out a basic HPI check for £1.99. It tells you if the vehicle has been written off, had a plate transfer, number of former keepers, is it an import, has it ever been subject to a VIC check, does it have a current MOT etc etc. For less than £2 it tells you a lot of what you need to know from the comfort of your armchair.
    • Like Like x 5
  5. GaryM

    GaryM It's him, you know who. Him from you know ....

    Apr 28, 2016
    Patna , Ayrshire
    On the basis that it wasn't a mechanical inspection but a likely general condition inspection then yes I would.
    I don't buy privately as it can be quite difficult to spot a lemon.
    Had that happen to me in the past.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Thanks Dave,

    Yes, absolutely!
    As it will be on a purely voluntary basis. If your the nearest forum member to the bike somebody needs looking at but it's not convenient? Then they ask the next nearest forum member until they find somebody that's able to help?

    It's not something that any member will want to commit too much time to. However if we could get a network of 100's of volunteers together? Nobody should be asked to look at bikes every weekend?
    • Like Like x 2
  7. MrOrange

    MrOrange The Lunatics have definitely taken over !!!!
    Staff Member Subscriber

    Oct 28, 2015
    the Heart of Darkness
    Think I am already signed up for this !!!!!:cool:

    Will always be happy to check a bike out for somebody, made easier by a decent checklist provided for the job. I didn't know the pitfalls when looking at Bandit 1200's, but I do now.

    Maybe a checklist could be put together, how to check, what to check, etc. This could be a generic list, would also be helpful for folks even going to check out a bike on their own !

    Only problem with that bandit job - I wanted to buy it !!!!:D:D:D:D
    (good job my pennies are all reserved for Portugal next month;))
    • Like Like x 6
  8. Modalconfusion

    Modalconfusion Active Member

    Jul 28, 2016
    It actually sounds a great idea, like you say extra photos, anything really noticeable and a insight into the seller might prove to be helpful. I would be happy to help out if need be, a
    Though I am not a expert in anything, so the missus says :D
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Hi Gary,

    We could offer different levels of "check" depending on the volunteers knowledge & willingness to stick their neck out?

    If the volunteer isn't happy to give an opinion on the mechanical/electrical integrity of the bike?

    Then they just say they are only happy to give an opinion of the cosmetics & provide photos of any nasties that may not be visable from a distance?
    • Like Like x 3
  10. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Spot on mate!

    Often a face to face with the seller can speak volumes about the vehicle.

    I drove 100's of miles once to look at a V-max. On the phone the seller was pretending to be Yamahas chief technician.
    When I got there the bike was in a damp garage & there wasn't a single tool of any kind in there!... Well apart from the tool that had just driven 250+ miles to look at the rusty pile of crap! :(
    • Like Like x 3
  11. Dougie D

    Dougie D Crème de la Crème

    Jan 30, 2016
    Blairgowrie Perthshire
    Great idea Jez :cool:, I'd be up for that..although I'm no mechanic :oops:
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Dayoshir

    Dayoshir Well-Known Member

    Aug 6, 2016
    Aye count me in too. Not a mechanic but can spot an expensive noise a mile off!!
    • Like Like x 2
  13. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Cheers Dougie,

    You may be no mechanic mate but I'm sure you could identify the basics? i.e. worn chain/sprockets, discs, tyres etc & scuffed/damaged bodywork, exhuast & engine cases etc.

    None of those issues may be visable in the normal Ebay photos? In which case you popping along for a quick look could save a potential buyer a wasted journey?
    • Like Like x 3
  14. GaryM

    GaryM It's him, you know who. Him from you know ....

    Apr 28, 2016
    Patna , Ayrshire
    Most obvious things I would pick up on, but not everyone would be able / willing to do so .
    Think after all the years I've ridden I would have a reasonable chance of spotting a pig in a poke.
    But would be more wary of saying to some one else it's a good un.
    Still quite happy to do that for some one. In this day and age would be easy to make a video of the bike as well as just pictures.
    • Like Like x 2
  15. om15

    om15 Active Member

    Sep 5, 2016
    I think it is a great idea, count me in
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Right Gentlemen,

    Thank you to all who have said they'd be up for helping with this.

    We'll give it another week or so to see if there are anymore offers of help?
    Then maybe somebody who is good with a PC (Not myself :confused:) could put together some kind of list/data base of volunteers, where they live, how far they are willing to travel & the level of info they could gather on the bike?

    I think it's a bad idea to publish your entire postcode. As it would be a very useful tool for bike thiefs.
    However a part postcode would be better than just your town/city.

    If this works? I can see it being a great asset to the forum & potentialy save people a lot of wasted time & money.

    Thanks again guys
    • Like Like x 2
  17. om15

    om15 Active Member

    Sep 5, 2016
    I would be happy to do the admin, raise a list on a sticky with area, particular models experienced with and level of expertise.
    If the minimum info was on the list, anyone interested could pm for more information and the depth of bike survey could be agreed based on this
    • Like Like x 1
  18. TEZ 217

    TEZ 217 Crème de la Crème

    Mar 6, 2016
    south shields
    I'm Free [​IMG] !!!! and willing to be added to your list Jez
    • Like Like x 2
  19. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    Cheer mate.
    Pls put overalls on though. I wouldn't want you to ruin that smart suit! ;) :p :D
    • Like Like x 2
  20. Dozers Dad

    Dozers Dad Bushmills Chief Quality Controller

    #20 Dozers Dad, Sep 11, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016
    Cheers mate,

    This is the info I think we need? I'll list it below for myself as an example....

    Forum name = Dozers Dad (Jez)
    Postcode = NN2 8## (Northampton)
    Distance willing to travel = 20 mile round trip
    Inspection level = Cosmetic (happy to email photos) basic Mechanical (wheel bearings & head bearings, fork seals etc) Consumables (tyres, pads, discs, chain & sprockets) & basic electrical function (lights, indicators & horn etc)
    Willing to ride the bike = No

    That is just off the top of my head. I'm happy to tweak it into a format others are happy to use.

    I'm also happy to travel a bit further outside my listed 20 mile round trip if my fuel costs are covered? However I'd much rather we got lots of forum members to sign up to this idea. So the inspections can be kept as a totaly free of charge service.
    • Like Like x 4

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