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  #1  
Old 19 Jun 2013
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Australia bike tour Q's (purchase and legal issues)

Hi guys,

29 yr old backpacker here, looking to buy a motorbike in Sydney to cruise around australia for 6 weeks! The idea is pretty recent so excuse me if I sound impatient in the message :-) I had some plans to do campervan relocations to wherever they would be needed but my first (big) leg fell through already and there's little out of Sydney.
Anyways: I fly to Sydney this coming friday. I have no set plan, but I'd prefer to drive from sydney to perth, sell the bike, and catch a flight back to sydney prior to my flight home. I have 7 weeks in Australia and am hoping to get at least 5 weeks of riding in.
I have a few questions regarding this:
- What are the requirements to own a bike in Oz? What prerequisites are necessary? I have a dutch motorcycle license (all categories). How do I get insurance, do I pay the taxes, etc? Do I need any local Ozzie things like a bank account?
- I've read there's difficulty in selling a vehicle in another state than which it was purchased in. Is this truly so much hassle and additional cost that it is prohibitive? Any indications?
If this is indeed the case, I'll do a smaller loop out to Uluru and back, something that will average maybe 200km per day.
- How long has it taken you to find a good bike, and sell it? I'm considering a few days (3-4) to buy a bike and gear, and calculating one week to sell. I'm already browsing internet for bikes in the Sydney area so I that I can hit the ground guns blazing.
- I have no biker gear with me as I have been backpacking through NZ and a bit of south america (I should have shipped it ahead from home!). What would I be spending on gear in Oz? Second hand is fine. I'm thinking at least gloves and a helmet, a cheap suit would be nice.
- At most I would spend 3k on a bike, and factor in a 1k hit when I sell it (price to sell in days). Any recommendations on a bike? I'm thinking either a recent ~400cc bike (newer), or an older 800cc (beefier construction, more reliable). Something along the lines of a honda, suzuki or a kawa. What are common and reliable machines in Oz?

If I think of more questions I'll post them

Cheers!
Pete
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  #2  
Old 19 Jun 2013
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You picked a very cold time to do that ride. North is the place to be riding a bike at this time of year, winter time?
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  #3  
Old 19 Jun 2013
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Hi Pete,

I'll try and answer some of your questions:
- No prerequisites (other than cash) to own a bike.
- Since you are starting in Sydney make sure you buy one with current New South Wales registration. The NSW registration includes the legally necessary basic insurance included. The bikes paperwork will show date registration runs out - there will be nothing on the bike itself - so its important to check this carefully. The basic insurance which comes with the rego covers you for hitting people - it does not cover other persons property. If that worries you you can buy "property damage insurance" from various private companies but it will cost you $300+ dollars for a year policy - though you can cancel at the end of the trip and get most of this back.
-Do not buy a bike without current registration as you will waste a few days of your time organising it and it will cost many $. Ditto don't buy a bike with registration for any state other than NSW - the transfer process is a pain and time consuming, which is why they sell at a discount
- After buying it you need to transfer the bikes registration to yourself. To do this you need to go to a local Roads and Maritime Authority (RMA) office with photo ID, your driving licence (with English translation if not in English). These offices are in most suburbs so it won't be hard to find one. Process is painless, but you will watch a hundred dollars or so disappear from your budget (the exact amount depends on how much you paid for the bike so that is the reason most people understate it on the forms, do that with some caution the staff knows it happen and don't like the total mickey being taken. Note if you research on the web you will find lots of references to the RTA - its the same place they have had a recent name change.
- you will be able to sell a NSW bike in Perth (Western Australia) but you will take a substantial extra discount and it may slow down the sale.
- For $3000 you will be able to find something suitable to travel on, but I wouldn't be worrying about popularity, given you want to buy in a hurry its about what is available on the day. Best place to look is usually "Gumtree", and Ebay. Sometimes good buys turn up on the Australian regional forum Advriders.
- You should be able to buy basic helmet, gloves, jacket for around $400 from most bike shops
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  #4  
Old 19 Jun 2013
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Hey Martin,

That's some useful info, much obliged Since I am on a rather restrained time budget, it seems like I'll be doing some east-coast style round trip then. I heard about the registration in other states and that it's a hassle.
As for what type of machine, yeah, I'm not being too picky. I'm looking at what's available, sounds legit and is ready to go without any real work other than (at most) an oil change and chain lube. I've found a few suzuki gsf250's and some gsx750's.
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  #5  
Old 20 Jun 2013
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Pete, can I seriously suggest you consider hiring a bike.
Considering your time constraints and your lack of gear and the very real possibility that you won't sell the bike in one week at the end of your trip - I would very strongly reccomend that you look at hiring.

Suzuki GS500 Hire
These guys have a Suzuki 500 for $605 per week and for 5 weeks I reckon Mark might give you a better deal. This INCLUDES helmet, jacket and gloves and no insurance or re-registration worries.

I can lend you some Oxford panniers if you like.

Also TravellingStrom is right - go North young man!
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  #6  
Old 20 Jun 2013
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In terms of total cost it's still a bit more expensive but it's not that much more for the increased peace of mind. Just talked to that shop you recommend and they'll agree on 2200 for 5 weeks.
Sounds like a good plan!
As for the temp, I won't shun 10 degree C weather. Sure the mornings may be a bit colder, but I'd rather be cool, than be hot (well, on a bike anyways!)
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  #7  
Old 20 Jun 2013
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$2200 for 5 weeks - excellent price!
Pick up bike and ride - with total peace of mind... worth a few extra bucks in my book!

Let me know if you need the panniers - pickup from Sydney CBD.
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  #8  
Old 22 Jun 2013
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Hey Scootergal,

I'm looking to make a decision today on a rental company. Depending on whether or not additional gear is necessary I may take you up on your offer for the panniers. Since I cannot send a PM yet, can you send me a PM with a telephone number I can contact you at?
Possible pickup late sunday or monday.

Cheers
Pete
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  #9  
Old 29 Jun 2013
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Head north then fly out of Cairns, thats all im saying.

Mezo.
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  #10  
Old 21 Aug 2013
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How did your trip go?

G'day Pete,
How did your trip go? Any advice for others doing a similar trip?

tia,
build
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