October 16, 2009

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Ride Friday: Returns with a Moto Purchase!

For those of you that don’t read my twitter (and I don’t blame you), this past weekend, I bought a motorcycle. The longer version of the story is that I spent the previous week (last week of September) shopping for Motorcycles and doing research. I already knew what I wanted, a 2009 BMW R1200RT. Of course I also knew I couldn’t afford that, so I stuck to more realistic options, AKA used motorcycles of the same line. That meant I was shopping for R1150RT’s or R1100RT’s. To me, the R-RT series from about ‘99 on looks very nice, the harder lines of the ‘09 remind me of an F-22 Raptor (Yes, the 200 million dollar stealth fighter) and therefore is god damn sexy, but alas. Anyways, after seeing enough RTPs (that’s P, as in Police), I thought having one would be cool. Of course I didn’t limit my search to RTPs, but they seemed to be a little cheaper on average, which was very appealing to me. One of the biggest parts of this hunt was staying in a budget zone I could afford, and it was extremely hard to ignore those slightly nicer, slightly newer bikes that were “just a few grand more”. I knew if I went over a certain amount, scope creep would take me right back up to that $22,000 R1200RT.

While I’d spent some time on ebay sizing up prices, and doing some small time bidding, I thought staying local might be a better idea. So at the beginning of October I started into Craigslist. I’ll be totally honest, while I’d been on Craigslist, and investigated a few items here and there, I’d never really thought it was too serious of a deal. Well, I got serious about it and started calling people and checking out bikes. On Sunday, I found a nice 2000 BMW R1100RTP with very low miles and in very nice condition. After looking everything over, checking the maintenance record, taking a test ride… I took the plunge. I made an agreement with the seller, In which I gave him fair deposit and he’d take the bike off the market until payment in full is made.

That is where I am now, as of writing (Sunday the 4th — yes, I know I’m writing well in advance; it’s because I know once I get the bike… I’ll slack off again; plus it makes John happy). The plan is that when I get a cashier’s check (this is one of the downsides to doing most of my banking through a bank that has no branches, I’ve got to transfer money out to get things like cashier’s checks), the owner will ride the bike down to me, we’ll sign some paperwork, and everyone will be happy. The (soon to be) previous owner has been a very nice guy, and very informative. I know a fair amount about BMW bikes from my research, but none from owning one.

I’m hoping that by Wednesday or Thursday (the 7/8th) I will have the bike in my possession (Editor’s Note: This is indeed the case.). The first thing I’m gonna do is ride it around, then bring it to the local BMW shop to get checked out (can never be too careful). After that, it’s all joy. I’m sure I’ll have another post or two worth of material to follow this post up with… and probably a fair amount of motorcycle posts in the future.

Which brings us back to the title of this article, Ride Friday. It is likely to be back, hopefully at least once a month you will be treated (for certain values of “treated”) to my or John’s ramblings on motorcycles. Enjoy (or cringe in terror, either way)!