Home > Uncategorized > The Rat Bike ~ Vroom, Vroom By: Eric Peters on cheap, fun transportation in tough times.

The Rat Bike ~ Vroom, Vroom By: Eric Peters on cheap, fun transportation in tough times.

Recently by Eric Peters: Is the Government Really Concerned About ‘Gas Mileage’?

portrait Eric Peters

portrait Eric Peters (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The worse the economy gets, the more popular motorcycles become. They’re a cheap – and fun – way to get around. “Rat bikes” – older models that maybe don’t look showroom-new anymore but run fine – even more so. You can still find mechanically sound, if a bit aesthetically impaired, rat bikes for $2,000 or so. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, a lot less so. As an example, about a year ago, I stumbled on a 1983 Honda GL650 Interstate. This is a middleweight touring bike with a windshield, fairing and lockable, weatherproof storage compartments – making it ideal for longer trips and much more practical/useful than a sport bike. I snapped it up for $1,400 with 12,765 original miles on the clock. I now have a 60 MPG bike that’s a lot more appealing to me than a 50 MPG – and $25,000 – hybrid.

A buddy scored a couple of older Nighthawks – each of them costing less than $1,500. They have some dings; the chrome’s not perfect anymore. But the bikes are 100 percent solid, mechanically.

But, older bikes have their owns set of issues. The first of these is that many dealers won’t touch a bike older than 15 years or so. Some draw the line at ten. Many people do not know about this informal rule – and get a surprise when they take their newfound oldie in for a valve clearance check and carb adjustment.

This is very much unlike the situation with cars. You can take a 20-year-old Honda to virtually any Honda dealer – provided it’s a four-wheeled Honda.

I’m not sure why this is – but be advised, it is………………


via The Rat Bike by Eric Peters.

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