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Well, the Sprint ST deal went through after all. The seller toted it to Metropolis Motorcycles, who indicated where they’d hidden the alarm/immobiliser, fitted
the blanking plug (and a new battery), and it runs like a charm. So that’s in the lock-up, awaiting fitment of the new ignition switch, replacement of the cracked panel, and a full cosmetic valet. 24,000 miles, fsh, lots of useful extras, and a full three-piece luggage set, all for £840. I might even keep it for myself.

I just missed out on a really, really clean low-miles Kawasaki GPX250. I’ve tipped these before as being astounding value for money as, while the styling is very early-1990s, the engine is basically the same as in the modern 250 Ninja, and you can pick them up for stupidly low money. On eBay, I thought I had this nailed, but someone slipped in a higher bid with one second to go, and I was outbid at £560. Rats. I’m absolutely certain that good used ones will be closer to four figures next spring.

By now I've probably made up my mind whether or not to buy an old but very coherent Yamaha FJ1200. These were absolutely the best value for money sports- tourers, when new in the 1990s. They had 130bhp, a bulletproof engine with superb torque, and great comfort. The engine is still around today, detuned, in the XJR1300, one of the last big air-cooled fours you can buy. I think I can get a really nice one for £1000 or so, and mark it up, after a going-over and clean, for around £1500 in the new year. 


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Neil Murray

By Neil Murray

MCN Used Bike Expert