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  #1  
Old 7th December 2019
Greasyman Greasyman is offline
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Default Highest mileage EVO you'd buy.

I'm new to Harleys, and am trying to learn as much as I can before I buy one. What is the highest mileage EVO you'd be willing to buy? I see a lot that seem like good deals, but they often have 20-30k on them. For a car that's nothing, but it seems that's fairly high mileage for a bike. At what point does the not perfectly but decently maintained EVO start need substantial work, or just start feeling a little old and worn?

Is 30k ok, or should I pay a little more and get something with under 10k? If 30k is ok, how about even higher mileage... 50?
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Old 7th December 2019
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Er, Sportsters are a bit of a different breed, when you say EVO that means a engineering change for big twins. Sportsters have not changed much since 1957...they did not have to.

Quad cam bastids.

However as i am partial to carbureted, induction...Any well maintained Sportster pre 2007 is a deal for less than 3 grand. If the previous owner was not a member here, call it suspect.
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Old 7th December 2019
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I paid $3400 for my meticulously maintained 05 1200C 3 years ago with 23,000 on the clock. I wanted carbed. It came with enough take offs to sell for a $1000.
It was barely broke in. I've stuck a lot into it since. None of which it NEEDED except for tires. The rest was to make it the way wanted it including the engine work for better performance.
Mileage wise, not much different than a car really. The closer to 100,000 its getting the more likely its getting tired.
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Old 7th December 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greasyman View Post
I'm new to Harleys, and am trying to learn as much as I can before I buy one. What is the highest mileage EVO you'd be willing to buy? I see a lot that seem like good deals, but they often have 20-30k on them. For a car that's nothing, but it seems that's fairly high mileage for a bike. At what point does the not perfectly but decently maintained EVO start need substantial work, or just start feeling a little old and worn?

Is 30k ok, or should I pay a little more and get something with under 10k? If 30k is ok, how about even higher mileage... 50?
20-30K is fine. Id look for a bike from a mature owner that been well cared for and not beaten. I have 43k on a 1996 XL1200, and it runs great. No indications that it’s becoming worn out. When I bought it, I asked the the local independent when I should plan on “freshening the engine”. He said that he sees plenty of EVO sportsters with 100k on them.
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Old 7th December 2019
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I had 49.5K on my 883R with no problems. Ran like a Swiss watch. If serviced at the required intervals it should easily go to 100K.I'd be wary of poor quality accessories & performance parts rather than mileage
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Old 7th December 2019
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Bought my '09 new. I had a transmission issue 2 years ago that required a diassembly. At 72,000 miles. I could still see the honing marks in the cylinder walls. No carbon build up on the pistons, as I had installed an external crank case breather from day one. It now has over 100k miles & I plan to ride it from Ohio to Wenatchee Washington in June. Take this info for what ever it's worth. Mileage doesn't mean much on an EVO motor, IMHO.
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Old 7th December 2019
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The mileage doesn't mean as much to me as the maintenance and operation. A fairly low mileage bar hopper that's never been maintained and has been hammered on cold all it's life is probably going to have a lot of issues. A higher mileage bike that's been maintained meticulously by and operated by an owner that cared will probably be trouble free.

A couple years back I almost pulled the trigger on an '05 the local dealer had that had 120K on the clock. Bought new by a lady in NY and ridden all over the US and Canada, and she handed the all the original paperwork and a maintenance log over when she traded it in. The only reason I didn't buy it was because by the time I saw it they had already started polishing the engine back up. I thought the natural patina that a 12 year old 120K back had was perfect.
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Old 8th December 2019
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If the oil and filter was often changed and it wasn't revved much over 3k or lugged under 2k, it should stay in pretty good shape.
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Old 8th December 2019
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Originally Posted by denguy View Post
If the oil and filter was often changed and it wasn't revved much over 3k or lugged under 2k, it should stay in pretty good shape.
Is this a mistake? You give a 1000 RPM range of safe operation. I would think you meant 5 or 6K, no? You can't even run it at highway speed at 3K.
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Old 8th December 2019
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Originally Posted by Piper01 View Post
Is this a mistake? You give a 1000 RPM range of safe operation. I would think you meant 5 or 6K, no? You can't even run it at highway speed at 3K.
Agreed. Mine gets run between 3000 and 5000rpm for the most part with the occasional 6000-6500 to burn any cobwebs out. Lugging it is far more of an issue than over revving it.
She'll handle 7000rpm. 2000rpm is lugging it.
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