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Odo reading as it relates to battery..does this sound right

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Hi guys. This has to do w/ a bike I'm about to look at, and what may (or may not) be fishy.

First, you'll think I'm nuts. Not sure if you'll recall (which is understandable) but I'm the guy who was picking your collective brains on the '05 DRZ S w/ 5K on it. Long story short it checked out so I bought it. Thanks for the help! 3300, a little high, but a good clean bike- all runs/sounds/looks great.

Here's the thing, I stumbled across an '03 w/ what the seller states is 300 miles on it for like 2800. Though skeptical, I e-mailed him. He says the bike has hardly been used (no place to ride, been sitting in the garage) and then goes on to say this about the odometer reading (quote from his e-mail):

"I did have to put a new battery in it last week because it sat all winter and the electronic display of speed etc seems to be off a little. The bike is in great condition. As far as I know there are no problems with the bike other than the aformentioned digital display and right now it is not idleling right, but I know it's only old gas or something, nothing major."

SO- would the battery going out cause a hinky odometer reading?? If the reading isn't trustworthy then I don't think I could feel good about it.

I know it's nuts...I shouldn't be thinking about looking at the bike after just buying one, but man if it only had 300 miles on it then I'd consider flipping the '05 I just bought.

Please let me know what you think of the sellers response.

Thanks!!!!

Eric

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Hi guys. This has to do w/ a bike I'm about to look at, and what may (or may not) be fishy.

First, you'll think I'm nuts. Not sure if you'll recall (which is understandable) but I'm the guy who was picking your collective brains on the '05 DRZ S w/ 5K on it. Long story short it checked out so I bought it. Thanks for the help! 3300, a little high, but a good clean bike- all runs/sounds/looks great.

Here's the thing, I stumbled across an '03 w/ what the seller states is 300 miles on it for like 2800. Though skeptical, I e-mailed him. He says the bike has hardly been used (no place to ride, been sitting in the garage) and then goes on to say this about the odometer reading (quote from his e-mail):

"I did have to put a new battery in it last week because it sat all winter and the electronic display of speed etc seems to be off a little. The bike is in great condition. As far as I know there are no problems with the bike other than the aformentioned digital display and right now it is not idleling right, but I know it's only old gas or something, nothing major."

SO- would the battery going out cause a hinky odometer reading?? If the reading isn't trustworthy then I don't think I could feel good about it.

I know it's nuts...I shouldn't be thinking about looking at the bike after just buying one, but man if it only had 300 miles on it then I'd consider flipping the '05 I just bought.

Please let me know what you think of the sellers response.

Thanks!!!!

Eric

Maybe speedo is in Km/H mode?

idling sounds like clogged pilot common after long storage. but who knows.

but I would not want to take the chance on a used bike, but that is just me.

Jbw

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I believe the display has a small internal battery and will store the mileage regardless of the bikes main battery voltage.

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display has eprom for mileage so no battery needed for memory.

the shape of the bike will tell you a lot more as well.

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dp- this is the tidbit I was wondering about. I'll do more research tonight to see if such is the case. As mentioned, if I can't trust the odometer, then I'm not interested.

jbw- Km/H mode is a thought...I'll ask. On not being interested in a used bike, I can certainly respect that...peace of mind, etc. I've had good luck w/ used vehicles, IMO it's all about the thoroughness of research, inspection/scrutiny and, ultimately, the old adage of "buy the seller."

If anyone else has a read on this guys e-mail, please let me know what your gut says.

Thanks!

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display has eprom for mileage so no battery needed for memory.

the shape of the bike will tell you a lot more as well.

:) you are right my bad it is an eprom not a battery.

Yes, look for boot wear on cases and shifter.

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Low battery will cause the display to blink out but not change the numbes as far as I know. Perhaps it could loose the program from MPH to KPH. If it only has 300 miles, you should be able to tell that from other areas: tires, brakes, chain etc.

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What Noble said. A bike with only 300 miles on the clock will be identifiable by a simple visual inspection regardless of what the odo says.

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his email doesn't bring any red flags so go check it out thoroughly.

it could be speedo reset to kph.

see if it works during test ride as noble said,other parts will indicate what is the true story.

good luck

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jbw- Km/H mode is a thought...I'll ask. On not being interested in a used bike, I can certainly respect that...peace of mind, etc. I've had good luck w/ used vehicles, IMO it's all about the thoroughness of research, inspection/scrutiny and, ultimately, the old adage of "buy the seller."

Thanks!

Buying a used bike is fine their is just risk involved and you already have a bike that runs well, that is all I was trying to say not that you should only buy new. Also one thing to remember is that you may not be able to sell your bike for as much as you bought it for in this market. But the bike you found sounds like a great deal if it is legit. I may just be a little biased as my new to me used bike has possibly developed a major problem so I can not use it till found/fixed.

Good luck,

Jbw

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Good stuff guys. I'll go have a look. Yeah, I feel like a bonehead having just bought one, but if this thing checks out I may be willing to go through the gyrations of getting rid of the one I just bought. Who knows...just depends on what I see (I agree, it should be obvious if it's really that low mileage.)

jbw- I understood your intention and appreciate it. I sure hope your issue checks out just fine.

I sure appreciate the he*l out of this site. :)

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Sorry for the delayed update for those who may be curious...went to look at the bike and my car broke down out in the country on the way back. Been a good weekend. :)

So I made it out there and here's what I saw/know... The bike does appear very low mileage- near new deathwings on it, good pads, etc...overall I'd say wear was appropriate. The dash was indeed set to Km/H, the owner seemed surprised. We flipped through the manual, but didn't see how to change it back to Mph (must have overlooked something.)

What weirded me out is that the odometer reading says -303. What is the negative/minus sign in front of the 303?

Next was what he described as the idling issue, stating it was probably gunked from sitting. The bike was cold (good) and we started it w/ choke fully out (temp was around 38 F when I was there.) It started and seemed to idle just fine, but you couldn't get it off the choke. The warmer the bike got, the less it wanted to run (had to keep it full choke and it would stall...w/out any choke no chance.) Also- a fair amount of white smoke coming from the exhaust the whole time. If you kept the throttle on you could ride it (and I did....very strong, seems to have great compression) but some sharp crackling/pops on decel (and you couldn't let it fully unwind as it would then stall.) He did say he'd also been fiddling w/ the idle adjust knob, and numerous times said he knows nothing about the mechanics of bikes.

I don't know...I think a good carb cleaning would probably have it running right, but wasn't sure what to make of all the white smoke.

Oh- I didn't like that he wasn't straightforward about the bike having been dropped (I don't necessarily mind a bike that's been dropped, just be up fornt about it.) He's the original owner and I specifically asked if it had been dumped (in riding, or just in place.) He said No. Well, the left handlebar end was pretty deeply scuffed and that side of the handlebar was very slightly bent (or it could have been very slight fork twist.) Either way, it was clear. The scuff on the left sideplate he explained as a tree scuff (though pretty deep...I suspect that one happened when the bike was dropped.)

He said 2700 was his rock bottom, and also said he was probably going to take it to the dealer to get it running smooth again. I told him I had to err on the side of caution (good thing I did, seeing as my car broke down expensively on the way home afterwards :banghead: and added that he's welcome to call me when it is straightened out.

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The Odo you were looking at was not the actual odo, it was (one of) the trip meters. The speedo unit has three odos. One for total miles, the opther two are trip meters. They can count down, count up and have percent of actual applied. It is all in the owners manual.

One cause of white smoke on statup of a bike that has been sitting in an unheated space is condensate in the exhaust evaporating. To be sure, ride the bike 20 miles, park it, let it cool down and restart. No smove means it was condensate, still smoking, possible head gasket

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Thanks- I'll re-read the manual as I thought the rbottom right corner reading was strictly odo total.

Either way too many unknowns and, though it isn't necessarily huge, the less than straightforwardness about the dropping didn't inspire confidence. It's probably a great find, w/ a small leap of faith. The '05 I just bought has 5K on it, but I know it's seen regular service in it's 4 years (as opposed to one that's hardly been run at all in 6 years.)

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