First Post/New Member - Planning to buy a 1992 VFR750F

Discussion in '3rd & 4th Generation 1990-1997' started by GreginDenver, Mar 27, 2016.

  1. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    Hello All, I'm Greg

    I'm looking at a buying a 1992 VFR. Went to look at it today. I've been a fan of the Honda V4 engine for years, just never owned one so I thought maybe now's the time. I know the bike is 24 years old so I'm not expecting perfection and in the past I've completely rebuilt a couple of bikes that started out in way worse condition than this.

    On the Good Side: This 1992 has low miles for its age, appears to have always been stored inside, starts up nicely from dead-cold and idles out smoothly as it warms, everything electrical seems to work fine: lights, turn signals, instruments and instrument lights (haven't test ridden it yet due to weather).

    On the Bad Side: Fairings have been repainted. On inspection the fairings/plastics appear to be in pretty good shape (for a 24 year old bike), no obvious cracks or missing tabs, etc.

    Here's a surprising item -- The bike has its original Regulator/Rectifier! From what I've read about the VFR electrical issues I'm shocked to find the bike running fine on the original. What does that indicate, the fact that its original R/R has lasted this long?

    I certainly would appreciate any purchasing advice you might give me. What's the price range on a low-miles 1992? What should I look at closely, what should I listen for on the engine, what should I check?

    Thanks in advance for your help/advice

    Greg
     
  2. Rollin_Again

    Rollin_Again Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,316
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    53
    Location:
    Duluth, GA
    What is your definition of low miles and do you know why it was repainted? Also how do you know the R/R is original and not an OEM replacement? If the R/R went out at some point and was replaced by a Honda dealer they would have most certainly replaced it with the same shitty original unit that came with the bike. Since the one you are looking at has been repainted I would be a little wary about it being wrecked or dropped in the past and this would certainly affect the value of the bike in a negative way. The body parts on 3rd Gens are very brittle due to their age and the mid fairings are a real pain the ass to remove due to the poorly designed interlocking tabs which makes them very easy to crack/break when doing routine maintenance. OEM fairing are nearly impossible to find so even a small accident can leave you with damage that will be very costly to fix/repair since most aftermarket body parts are not interchangeable with the OEM parts. I would expect a "Pristine" 3rd Gen with seat cowl and less than 10k miles to bring in somewhere between $3800 and $4500 dollars. "Excellent" condition between 10K and 20K miles usually bring in somewhere in the $3000 - $3800 range. "Good" condition VFR between 20K and 30K miles usually bring between $2500 and $3000.
     
  3. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    Thanks for the response, it helps me get along toward a decision.

    From reading your post with mileage descriptions I guess my idea of "low miles" needs to be adjusted (I'd based my use of the term "low miles" on reading that these V4 engines have very long lifespans).

    I think this bike sits at the lower end of your "Good" condition description: It appears to be in very good mechanical condition with 33k miles and he's asking a hundred less than the lower end of your "Good" range.

    The thing that lets this bike down in value is definitely the paint.

    The story goes like this: the bike got dumped onto its left side (low speed) at some point early in its life and the owner (a prior owner, before the current owner) sourced OEM replacements for the fairing panels that got messed up. Apparently he got a good deal on mismatched color panels so to bring them together he got his "freak on" with his own paint job in an iridescent blue/purple hue. So the fairings appear to be sound but the paint color isn't factory spec (I know that tends to ruin the deal for the purist-types).

    I didn't guess that the R/R might have been replaced with another one of the same short-lived original R/Rs. Whether this actually happened or not will probably remain a mystery.

    Actually I'm beginning to wonder if I should just bail out on this bike because of the cosmetics. People seem to think that poor cosmetic appearance means there's other bad stuff yet to be discovered. But the bike started up from cold and idled so nicely. And the parts of the wiring harness that can be viewed with the seat off appear to be unmolested.
     
  4. RVFR

    RVFR Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    Messages:
    7,995
    Likes Received:
    249
    Trophy Points:
    108
    Location:
    Olympia Wa.
    Map
    I gota chuckle here and there.. 92s are nice, but getting rarer and that means the parts are even more so, but that said this doesn't take away from what they are if... in that I have seen factory RRs on 2nd gens still working fine, the trick here is in the connection from the stator, those connections get corroded then that creates a electrical loss causing high amp load of restriction, that in turn makes heat hence then the RR has a melt down. If it where me and the owner of said 3rd gen wouldn't mind do a charging check with ammeter and look over those connections, It could be all is good. Just because the paint is bad doesn't make the rest of the bike lousy, BUT there is something to be said if it looks bad it probably is. But still, it's worth looking into, then throw him an offer he can't refuse ;) could have a diamond in the ruff.
     
  5. Badbilly

    Badbilly Official VFRWorld Troll Of The Year!

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Messages:
    15,047
    Likes Received:
    49
    Trophy Points:
    48
    I have a 91. The chance that the R/R is going to fail is probable. There are fixes for this that will cost you a hell of a lot less than getting stranded in the boonies.

    Go over the current paintjob closely. Look for the fixes, crap in the paint, shoddy prep ect. The more ya find the greater the chance of buying a pig in a poke.

    At 33k miles, the monoshock is probably in need of replacement.
     
  6. Rollin_Again

    Rollin_Again Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,316
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    53
    Location:
    Duluth, GA
    I agree that the rear suspension will likely need replacement in addition to the R/R. The engines on these are solid and if properly maintained they can easily run close to or above 100k miles. The average bike buyer not looking to purchase a 25 year old bike so the ones who consider these 3rd Gens are usually looking for original condition bikes unless the price is a steal which in this case it isn't. With with the aftermarket poor quality paint job I think the current owner would be extremely lucky to get $2000 for it.
     
  7. Badbilly

    Badbilly Official VFRWorld Troll Of The Year!

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Messages:
    15,047
    Likes Received:
    49
    Trophy Points:
    48
    The good part is that the 90-93s were high on the lists worldwide as great bikes. If ya buy the bike and replace that POS R/R that still works, stow the old one under the seat just in case and don't look for any mention of how flakey the part was in any of the reviews or by Honda Inc.
     
  8. RVFR

    RVFR Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    Messages:
    7,995
    Likes Received:
    249
    Trophy Points:
    108
    Location:
    Olympia Wa.
    Map
    Like BB mentioned more than likely the suspension as you are on it will need to be gone over, also all the rubber is getting hard, so be careful when fiddling, if you get that far, with the carbs, then there's the brakes Still, these 3rd gen are getting a cult status especially with the 8 spoke rear.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2016
  9. Scubalong

    Scubalong Official Greeter?

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Messages:
    9,219
    Likes Received:
    21
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    O.C Suck
    Map
    :welcome:
    Make yourself like at home :thumb:
     
  10. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    Thanks for the inputs, I appreciate your thoughts on this purchase.

    The ongoing maintenance required to live with an older bike doesn't scare me, I've got the experience and skill to completely tear down and rebuild a bike, I've recently done this with an old Suzuki.

    The truth is I actually enjoy the time spent in the garage bringing an old bike back from age and neglect.

    In just the last few years I've: pressed out and replaced wheel bearings, swingarm bearings, steering bearings, rebuilt/upgraded forks, replaced swingarm bearings and rear shock, replaced rivet style chains, re-wiring and soldering and chasing down electrical gremlins, oil change, coolant change, valve adjustments (but never on a bucket and shim style like the VFR), rebuilt brakes, replaced brake lines with stainless steel... and the list goes on.

    Here's what the candidate looks like:
    Screen Shot 2016-03-28 at 7.52.35 AM.jpg

    To be honest, money isn't a problem in this situation, with either the purchase of the bike or with any parts that it might need. I'm just hoping for a really satisfying motorcycle ownership experience, and the VFR750 seems to offer that.

    (I wouldn't hesitate to buy and paint a whole set of AirTech replacement fairings if the originals on this bike let me down enough)
     
  11. VFRVogt

    VFRVogt New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2015
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Atlanta
    Map
    I love my '90's 3rd gen. 25 years old? Sure it needed some attention. That bike now, it's a 10 out of 10, every time I ride it.
    Look closely for the less than obvious, not so much for what you already know it will need. (R/R and wiring, gaskets, fluids, filters, chain, sprocket, etc.)
     
  12. ridervfr

    ridervfr Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    Messages:
    3,609
    Likes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    South FL
    Map
    Love that sound of the yoshimura slip on. Bikes will last forever with decent maintenance. World wide bike for sure, got a euro switch from Austria for my 91 that wears 92 colours. Picked up a nice 93 with 15,000 miles a few years back. Now it has 22,000 or so. Rear suspension is shite along with your R/R ♤ replace connectors with solder joints and your good to go. I commute on the 93 once a week and the ninja 500 i got the rest of the time. Love the v-4. Good luck
     
  13. Rollin_Again

    Rollin_Again Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,316
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    53
    Location:
    Duluth, GA
    One more thing to note, the wheel color doesn't look original to me as the 92 models should be metallic gray color and the picture you provided looks more like gold which would have come on on the 1991 model. Does it include a centerstand and seat cowl ?

    Rollin
     
  14. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    Thanks for pointing out that wheel color issue, now I'm wondering exactly what one of prior owners actually did... Did he trade the bike's original '92 wheels for a pair of '91 wheels because he liked the gold color? Or did he just put gold paint on the '92 (metallic gray) wheels? Is there any identification on the wheels? Like maybe a production date code?

    Do you think, judging from the picture I posted, that the wheel color is Honda correct for 1991 or is it a repaint color trying to imitate the Honda color?

    I looked at the VIN on the bike's steering head and it checked out as a U.S. 49 state model (not a California model), with the year-code of "N" which means 1992.
     
  15. Rollin_Again

    Rollin_Again Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,316
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    53
    Location:
    Duluth, GA
    I don't believe there is a way to tell what year the wheels are and they look pretty close to OEM color for 91 model (Summer Blond Metallic)

    Unless you can get the bike for below $2000 I'd walk away. For $2500 you can easily find another 3rd Gen that is more original although you may have a hard time finding one locally (excuse for a road trip or a "fly and buy" trip)
     
  16. squirrelman

    squirrelman Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    Messages:
    8,251
    Likes Received:
    274
    Trophy Points:
    98
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    Map
    Rejecting the bike because of bad paint is ridiculous if the mechanical parts are good. Buy it, you'll enjoy working on it. :loyal:
     
  17. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    Thanks, I agree that with a 24 year old bike the emphasis has to be on the engine and frame right? If some other items are funky or cosmetically less than perfect but the engine and frame are good and the price is appropriate, why not buy it?

    My philosophy (or just my general feeling) on old motorcycles, 20 to 25 years is pretty old, is that if the engine is in good-to-excellent shape and the frame has not been compromised/wrecked/welded then everything else can be repaired or replaced if necessary.

    I do hate the feeling of the unknown history of any used vehicle purchase. I'd love to know everything about this bike's history but that's probably not going to happen. So I'm trying to concentrate primarily on determining whether the "bones" are good (engine and frame). I can sort out the rest. As I mentioned earlier I tend to be pretty happy when I'm in the garage wrenching on a bike.
     
  18. squirrelman

    squirrelman Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    Messages:
    8,251
    Likes Received:
    274
    Trophy Points:
    98
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    Map
    25 years on a Honda is not like 25 years on a Kawi, Suzuki, or Yamaha. VFRs were built to last !!
     
  19. Rollin_Again

    Rollin_Again Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,316
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    53
    Location:
    Duluth, GA
    I never said not to buy it, I am simply implying that there are a few signs that should make you wary especially given the unknown history and I think the price should be more reflective of this and it's not. As I indicated before most people buying 25 year old VFRs are looking for a more original examples which makes the already small pool of potential buyers ever smaller. This should translate to more negotiating power in your favor. I've seen plenty of 3rd Gens with "Custom Paint" listed for less and they typically end up sitting for sale for months and months until the seller is more "motivated" and reflects this in the price. How long has this thing been for sale?
     
  20. GreginDenver

    GreginDenver New Member

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2016
    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    140
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    Map
    No offense intended. I appreciate your inputs, you guys are giving me the sort of experience-based opinion that I came here for.

    The bike has only been up for sale for a couple of weeks. I don't know how motivated this guy is liable to become, the motorcycle appears to have been sitting for quite a while.
     
Related Topics

Share This Page