is it worth the potential trouble?

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by Harpo568, Dec 28, 2013.

  1. Harpo568

    Harpo568 New Member

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    I am a serious newb to motorized bikes and this is my first post (besides an introduction).
    I've been wanting to build a motorized bike for a while and have decided to do one over the winter. I was planning on picking up a new bike and a new 2 stroke kit in the next few weeks. BUT...
    this morning I ran across a very used bike already built for $100. It's a basic mountain bike and looks pretty rough (dirty engine, floppy chain and cables, CDI duct taped to the frame, etc.)...BUT (again) it's only $100.
    I'm weighing the pros/coms of just buying this as a start point. I do know I am probably buying someone elses problems and mistakes...
    is it really worth the risk of ending up with a large space waster/ accident waiting to happen? or would it make a good starting point for me to tinker, get a feel of how these operate and how I want to build my own bike?
    I guess I am really on the fence here about it...I've limited myself to a budget of $600-1000 for my build project so if I do buy it that takes out a sizeable chunk of my cash. On the other hand I've never really messed with bikes much and I kind of figure it's better to break a $100 bike than a $500-600 bike...
    opinions?
     
  2. racie35

    racie35 Active Member

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    If the owner only values it at $100......that's probably a clue
     
  3. rustycase

    rustycase Gutter Rider

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    Hello Harpo,

    Welcome aboard!

    IMO...

    YES. It is worth it.
    Do it!

    If you have the $600-$1000 budget, that first $100 will provide an excellent education which will lead you to wisely spend the rest of your budgeted funds.

    Best
    rc
     
  4. placidscene

    placidscene New Member

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    I'd say it is probably worth it. Do you have any pics?
     
  5. crassius

    crassius Well-Known Member

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    sounds like a good start - you can always get a kit for another $150 or so & have a nice pile of spares handy (spare parts help a LOT)
     
  6. 2door

    2door Moderator
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    Too hard to tell without some close up, detailed photos of that $100. bike. Things like engine and chain tensioner mounts, rear sprocket installation and the overall condition of the bike would all be factors you'll need to consider.
    First question would be, does it run?
    Have you ridden the bike?
    If the seller is only asking a hundred for it you could well end up with a hundred dollars worth of questionable spare parts. Nevertheless the bike could provide you with some training and experience on what not to do with your next project.
    Provide us with some pictures and we'll be able to offer more advice.
    Good luck.

    Tom
     
  7. maniac57

    maniac57 Old, Fat, and still faster than you

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    If it sounds too good to be true....
    A brand new kit is only $150 or so. Why not start with a NEW engine and kit for only $50 extra?
    Other peoples problems are usually not worth the effort unless you know what to do pretty well.
    Just my opinion.
     
  8. Harpo568

    Harpo568 New Member

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    total info on the bike is " motor runs great"
    no, I haven't actually seen the bike yet. it is about an hour away and I just found the ad for it today. Barring unforeseen circumstances or the bike selling right away I'll probably try to go check it out tomorrow.
     
  9. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Cool Harpo. Good luck.
     
  10. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods New Member

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    I think I'm gonna vote "No" on this one.

    For those of us who know these kits pretty well, it's likely to be worthwhile.

    But for a newbie, that bad installation might be more misleading than useful.
     
  11. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Active Member

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    "No" on the $100 bike if you are a first time builder.
    It will difficult for you to diagnose and fix problems if you have never experienced
    a properly running motorbike. You need a little experience to differentiate
    between problems that require attention and normal quirks.
    I want you to enjoy your first motorbike and enjoy the hobby.
    Just my opinion.
     
  12. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    I really do agree with every thought above. But think WB nailed it for a first time builder.

    Ya do sort of grow with a from scratch build and can feel and hear subtle changes.

    Just as an example, my first build didn't feel right after a few days. Stopped and looked. The left, rear stud nut had vibrated loose. (which is kinda common) Have lost engine mounts and it is potentially a catastrophic failure that normally locks up the rear wheel.

    Dunno. If it is a great deal and you have the space, might be nice to have as a spare or spare parts. But not an ideal candidate for a first ride.

    Just a thought.

    Forgot to say welcome to the forum.

    Ride safe!


     
  13. Harpo568

    Harpo568 New Member

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    Thanks to everyone for the input.
    I was very hesitant about the bike to begin with and have pretty much decided to just give it a miss. I can find better things to do with the $100.
     
  14. Scootmeister

    Scootmeister Member

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    All of this boils down to your level of mechanical skills. Those of us who can fix anything do not hesitate to take on a challenge. However, if your skills are marginal, it's probably best that you mitigate some of the risk by starting with new, less problemmatic parts, both bike and engine. Plus, if you buy new, you can pick how the parts are configured instead of accepting what someone else decided on, important things like whether the frame is aluminum or steel, the type of brakes, quality of the wheels. All of these things are more important on a motorized bike than on a pedal bike because of the increased speed. You are wise to seek advice from this forum, these guys have "been there, done that" and there is great value in their experience. Read as many threads as you can before you start. It will save a lot of time and errors. Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  15. Venice Motor Bikes

    Venice Motor Bikes Custom Builder / Dealer/Los Angeles

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    My advice it to save yourself a lot of headaches (& maybe some skin)... start new!

    For only a couple hundred bucks more you'll have some real peace of mind about the quality of your bike, (& how it was built).

    There are plenty of guys in this world who build & sell high quality motorized bikes... (But none of them sell their bikes for only $100)!!! ;)
     
  16. Donavan321

    Donavan321 New Member

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    I'd say build up your own bike to start, there's great video walkthorughs on youtube on how to do things. BUT in addition....If you see a nice motorized bicycle on craigslist and they want 200-250 Take the time to look at it(if it is sloppy, dirty, etc..I'd probably stay away because that's one sign of abuse and negligence both on motor and bike maintenance) If you see a nice clean build(i've seen them on my craigslist" I'd say ride it, test it, all that, take it. Take it. then you have two motorized bicycles with interchangeable parts. Most of the HT motors have interchangeable parts. Not ALL, but most. Two is better than one! :) Also if you're at all unsure, upload some pictures of what you're wanting to buy, to the forum here and the more experienced folks can say, go or no go. Good luck!
     
  17. Harpo568

    Harpo568 New Member

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    I do have decent mechanical skills and, for the most part, I know my way around an engine. I tinker by nature. But with any new undertaking I do prefer to go with new and start breaking...ummm I mean, learning from there. The $100.00 S.E.P. (someone elses problem) bike was a passing thought I guess.

    I am pretty sure that my wife already knows I won't be satisfied doing just one bike (Examples: my collection of 35 antique desk fans...because I needed one for my antique desk, and my 25-30 personal paintball markers and various equipment left over from my field manager days) and is sweating where I am going to work on and and store the 6 or 8 bikes I build before she makes me stop or sell some off. Especially since the garage in the house we rent has been converted into a recroom/ bedroom for my recently-moved-back-in-again adult daughter.

    In all seriousness now, at the moment my plans are to build a basic bike to begin with. After that, IF I enjoy the build and riding as much as I think I will, I'll build a second more challenging bike. Eventually I would really like to build a true board track/ early Harley/ indian replica motorbike. I love the likes and look of those 100 year old bikes.
     
  18. Harpo568

    Harpo568 New Member

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    LINES...didn't proofread closely
     

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