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  #1  
Old 4 Weeks Ago
piratemike piratemike is offline
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Default Mileage

Hey everyone. I am in the market for a 90’s model sportster. My question is, what would you consider “ too many miles “ fora bike this age? In my area, most are in the 20k-30k range. There are a few closer to 10k and a few more than 40k. Are there any inherent problems with these bikes as they get older?

Mike
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  #2  
Old 4 Weeks Ago
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sportsterdoc sportsterdoc is offline
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Depends upon how it was ridden and how it was serviced.
Does the seller show any pride of ownership in its appearance?
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  #3  
Old 4 Weeks Ago
XL1275 XL1275 is offline
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Well lower, as you know, is better. I would certainly got for the 10K range. When I was looking around for mine, I would compare the mileage vs price along with other factors such as quirks within the model of the changes that came along. I researched for a couple of months to understand the series with respect to issues etc. I can't specifically answer your questions, but I got a lot of info at hammerperf.com as they lay out the evolution if you are interested in mods. This can be informative even if you are not interested in mods because they point out strengths or shortcomings. The problem with used anything is the bubba factor. The longer it has run, the higher likelihood of bubba got to tinker
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Old 4 Weeks Ago
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When you take it for a test ride, if it doesn't feel right, don't try to figure out what's wrong with it ..just don't buy it. Mileage shouldn't matter except on the price.
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My preference is as close to stock as possible... I want to be the one that makes any mods.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sportsterdoc View Post
My preference is as close to stock as possible... I want to be the one that makes any mods.
Yup, I don't want nobody bubbaing on my scoot except me. Unfortunately I'll never get the money back. Fortunately, it's not for sale and just keep it to let my wife sell for $2K when I'm dead. Hopefully the bastard that got the deal won't put a sissy bar on it
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  #7  
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Parts that age with time (like rubber & seals) can most often be replaced inexpensively - Parts that age with wear (like metal parts) are often more expensive to replace...

I would opt for less mileage over a year or two newer... But examining the subject bike first hand for things like rust & damage will give a fair idea of the care it was previously given...

I just seems typical that you'll need to spend at least $500 after you get a used bike, unless you spend that $500 on an extremely well kept bike...

That said, 35K is not an excessive amount of miles on most of the expensive parts - As you approach 50K, there may be some high-wear items that need replaced, but I would expect there would be many more miles for a well kept model before needing high-dollar replacements.

As far as performance parts go, there are plenty of folks that bolt stuff together with little or no knowledge of whether they will work properly. Often the solution for poorly performing bikes, which are then for sale, is a matter of undoing the wrong thing before you can start to do the right thing... So, I also vote for a near stock engine if you're wanting to add performance mods. Of course, you need to be knowledgeable to do it right, as well.

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i am with the doc, service and ride style.
when in high school, i dealt with many machines and a lot not know mileage to begin with and some very old back to the 40>50's and really had no issues. i bought a lot of wrecks before insurance companies shut that down. i would buy, fix, ride and sell.
i will admit not that many hd's, mostly smokers.
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  #9  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sportsterdoc View Post
Depends upon how it was ridden and how it was serviced.
Does the seller show any pride of ownership in its appearance?
This is the primary concern for sure. I'm always on lookout to buy decent Sporties in my area for my next project and usually prefer higher mileage bikes in relation to their the age rather than being concerned with flat out low miles. If I see a '96 Sporty with only 4K miles opposed to 34K I'll be more interested in the 34K because IMO one of the worst things for a bike is one that hasn't been ridden and was merely neglected for the last 24 years. A well used higher mileage bike is usually better than one that was stuck in the corner of the garage.

But primarily as sportsterdoc stated, "Depends upon how it was ridden and how it was serviced."
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  #10  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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To me, pride of ownership trumps age & milage. If cared for these bikes will run a long time. 2 years ago, I bought my '99 with 17k miles from the original owner who had all services records and he kept the bike stock. Buying it was a no-brainer. I bought it and rode it home 700 miles and it's been great every since.

Trust your instincts as well. If you get the slightest feeling someone is BS'ing you, you are probably right and walk away. Please don't ask how I know; think "young and foolish".
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