If the bike was truly in the condition you indicate and only dirty, why did you not take the asking price?
It wasn't just dirty, for one thing. It was absolutely, mind-blowingly filthy, 1/2 inch-of-dust-and-liberal-bird-droppings filthy. Not a deal killer, true, but a BIG job. Next, yes, it cranked and ran -- but he admitted he had only drained the gas out of it the night before. I was astounded it cranked at all, but even so I well knew that before it could be truly roadworthy the carbs would have to be pulled and cleaned, perhaps rebuilt, then re-synced, etc. The fuel filter, petcock and fuel lines would assuredly need to be addressed, as well. To his knowledge, although it had only 3980 miles on it, it had NEVER had an oil or filter change, nor had the brake fluid ever been changed, nor the brakes serviced -- in 14 YEARS. All of that would have to be addressed, and rebuilding the master cylinder and caliper, plus installing a new brake hose (the old one was 14 years old, after all, and soft) would be the smart man's move. Twisting the throttle and pulling the clutch told me that at least lubrication of cables would have to be done -- he'd never done it -- and replacement would certainly be a possibility. The chain was rusted -- and I mean it would not flex at all. New chain an absolute must. Add in a couple of other factors -- he originally told me he was the original owner -- not true; he told me it had been parked less than a year -- obviously not true. The photo he posted in his ad, representing it as one of his bike -- I found it in a stock photo website online. Same model, same color -- not his bike.
His mind was set on $1800. That's Kelley Blue Book trade-in value -- a great sale price for a clean, roadworthy bike, even with 5 times the mileage. But that was most definitely NOT this bike. The bike has great potential, but by the time I spend the time and money this bike needs to be safe and reliable I can find one ready-to-go for no more money than I'd have in it, and that's not allowing a nickel for my labor. I offered him $1000, not wanting to insult him but not being completely insane, either. He was offended. I smoothed his feathers, explained I was a poor man, and wished him well. We parted friends. But he ain't gonna get $1800 for it. If you want to pay that much, I'll gladly put you in touch with him! But when you go to see it, take a machete so you can hack your way through the kudzu to the barn!