I bought a bike that's been sitting for a while. What now?

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First, realize that you're not going to ride this rough gem tomorrow, or probably this week. Go through the Service Schedule line by line and assume that nothing has been done. Be patient and think of all the work you would need to do if you had just sat around for months or years.

Here are some specific areas to make sure to check. Nearly all you need to know is in FAQ. Follow the links and also note the search function on the left.

Now start it up, and if there aren't any electrical or mechanical oddities, you're ready for the next list of stuff:

  • Adjust idle after it's warmed up
  • Give it some throttle stabs. Make sure it revs right and drops back to idle without hesitation.
  • Check for any odd smoke
  • Check for oil leaks (note them for potential gasket changes later on)
  • Monitor cooling system for leaks or overheating

This may not be everything, but at this step take a careful shakedown ride and hope it won't split in half on you.

There's no reason an older bike won't give you years of riding excitement. Keep an eye on the maintenance you've already done and you'll be fine.

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