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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum and street bikes. I am in negotiations with a guy selling his 1999 Ninja 250R. I offered him $1200 for the bike. He told me the following about it's condition:

-never laid down
-7040mi
-new chain, spark plugs, air filter, and battery 1 yr ago
-50-55 mpg
-NEEDS rear tire
-2 spots on seat are cracked
-no mechanical issues
-willing to include extra motor oil and chain lube he bought

His counter-offer was $1400 plus he would throw in 2 helmets. I called him and he seems somewhat receptive to my first offer. I told him he could keep the helmets.

Anyway, what do you guys think? Is this a good deal? This will be my first bike if I get it.
 

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1200 isn't too bad for a beginner bike. you'll more than likely keep it for a year or so and flip it to get something better. just GET THAT REAR TIRE right away
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Okay, well that guy ended up selling his bike for $2000...so I can't blame him for dumping it before I got there.

I'm looking at another bike. It's a bit newer, but it has some noisy valves. This is what the seller said about the bike:

"I have a 2007 kawasaki ninja starts, and runs great! needs valve adjustment, valves are a bit noisy when the bike is idling, but when you give it gas the noise fades away. you can drive the bike home. it has 17,800 miles on it. but still goes great! brand new chain on it, also new tires! $1400 obo if interested."

What do you guys think? I don't know much about bike engines yet, but I've read that valve adjustments are a bit complicated and expensive. What is this bike worth in its current state?

Thanks for the advice, everyone.
 

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1400 sounds too good to be true in my opinion. that sounds like there may be something else
 

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valve adjustment at the dealer is going to cost you 375.00 to 500.00 dollars minimum. I wouldn't have a dealer do it unless it was warranty work. Seems like more often than not the techs at the dealerships will be learning how to do a valve adjustment on YOUR bike. The 250 was redesigned in 2008. It looks so much better IMO. If there were no motor issues, he could prob easily get 1,500.00 or more. new chain and tires are worth 400 bucks.

If this is a toy for you to learn how to ride and learn how to maintain a bike, I'd offer him 1,000 cash. ask him if he knows a private bike mechanic,(X roadracer), that would like to pick up some extra work on the side. You can prob get the valves adjusted and the entire bike looked over for 300.00. The job will be done better than the dealer in most all cases and cost less.

If this is to be a commuter bike that has to be reliable day in and day out, I'd say keep looking for something with no motor issues. Do you have to have the bike now? can you save some more money? You can get a really decent bike for 3 grand if you look and negotiate. Cash talks in this economy.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Wow, you guys are awesomely quick to reply!

I was thinking $1400 was kinda low too, mps. The miles also seem super high for a 2007.

I'm looking to spend a max of $1500 on a starter bike. I want a bike that I can learn on and not feel awful about dropping. I have a Jeep that needs some TLC right now and I'm doing a lot of work on it as of late, so I can't spend a lot on a bike. I'm moving to a new town to work at a somewhat rural hospital and I would like this bike to be my daily commuter (I plan to live within 10min of the hospital). Craigslist is my only option with my price range lol. Luckily for me, I have some friends who might be willing to check a bike out for me and/or drive it home. I don't know how good they are with valve work, but I could ask.

I really appreciate the valve checking advice. Getting a full check-up would be ideal since it's a used bike with an engine issue. I just need to find a competent, honest, mechanic and I'll be set. :smile

I'm getting kind of frustrated with the communication gap on Craigslist. I'm tempted to just give up and buy one of the little rebel clown bikes I see popping up everyday on there :lol I don't think that would look very cool for a 6'1 skinny guy.

http://www.bestweekever.tv/bwe/images/2011/09/Simpsons-Tall-Car-Guy-1317414398.jpg


EDIT: I just did a little research on ninja 250 chattering at idle and found a discussion that brought up cam-chain tension as a possible cause instead of valves. This is supposedly a much easier adjustment that I could do myself. What do you guys think? Is it a possibility that this guy doesn't know cam-chain from valve noise? I'm probably going to go check it out this week if he hasn't sold it.

Source: http://www.sportbikers.net/forums/showthread.php?t=15631
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Okay, guys, I've got what looks to be a great prospect for my first bike. They originally asked $2200. Tell me what you think:

"2004 Kawasaki Ninja EX250 F18. Clean bike, never crashed or laid down, original owner, garage kept. Regular maintenance done. New rear tire, new front tire included. Great for beginner, still fun for experienced rider. Up to 70mpg! Only 8,300 miles! Needs left side muffler, can be found on ebay cheap. Must sell. Great bike, lots of fun, saves gas."

I asked them if it had any other issues, offered $1300, and got this message back:
"Yes, the muffler is the only issue. There are no other defects on the bike. Only other thing is i Modded the rear fender to pull the license plate up to the seat. I would consider the $1300 cash offer. I have more pics if you want them. If you could let me know something about Sunday I will get things in order to meet you. I apologize for the delayed response. I have been working long hours all week. Thank you for your interest in the bike."

How does this sound, guys? Would YOU jump on this deal? With the weather clearing up and getting warm, I'm ready to start riding! :runaway
 

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Shoot I will seel you my 250 for 1500 and it is an 07. A few scratches and stuff but I am in Maryville, TN. Shoot me a PM if you are interested. Carbs need to be redone and I will buy a new battery for it before I sell. Thinking about selling it this summer anyways.
 
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