Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Parts is Parts

Turning and burning motorcycles is great but any old timer will tell you “they are worth more in parts!” We started an Ebay Store years ago, to help get though winter and the slow times. Now the Ebay business has gone from a small part of our business to a big part. I often think if I just went underground and sold parts online instead of a store front, what would life be like? But having a store front gives people a place to go, to sell their old parts. I’ve gotten to be known as a good buyer in my town, I may not always be the first stop but people will always come by, and that’s because I will only pay what I feel something is worth. But I always back up my offers with cash in hand. Some parts I try and sell right away to get the money back into the shop but others I hold on to. Years ago a customer brought by a set of Quantum 4 valve heads and exhaust. If you have never seen a set, just look at the new Milwaukee eight by Harley Davidson. That’s right it’s not a new motor Harley put out. Guys where putting 4 spark plugs and 4 valve heads on their motorcycles long before Harley Davidson even thought about; but then again the aftermarket has always drove Harley to build new and better motorcycles. Getting back to the heads… I had seen in the early days of the big tire, high horse power choppers; a rise in new motors and bike company coming out. One of which was Quantum motorcycles they were made of all aftermarket parts for Harley Davidson motorcycles. The motor was really cool; the late Jim Fueling designed the heads for the bikes. They worked pretty good but I always thought they were just cool, I’m a speed freak and I love motors. So having a set was something I wanted. Now Quantum went out of business but you can still buy the heads they are called Hemi Heads and it’ll run about $3000.00 bucks to upgrade your old EVO, they even make them from the early Twin Cam motors. I’ve never done anything with the set of heads I got, I just put them in my store as a way to show them off, I would joke about not needing a new Milwaukee Eight because I had the heads to turn my old Evo into a new motor (but I have rode a Milwaukee Eight I got to say It’s nice.) Shovelhead Joe and Josh Run the Ebay Store and the 4 Valve heads have been for sale on there until now! I got an email from a guy in Australia looking to buy the heads off me! He offered me $2500.00 bucks and I was happy to take it (I only paid $300 for the heads). Josh has tried to sell those heads for 1000 bucks but I wouldn’t take it I knew they were worth way more! And now I had my proof, the old man isn’t as crazy as everyone makes him out to be! It only takes that one good sale and it takes a good month to a great month! But wouldn’t you know it the guy stiffed me! I can’t believe a guy online would do that! Josh got a good laugh about it but man what a bummer! Its ok the heads look great in my store and who knows maybe I will bolt them on to a motor one day. Last year at the AMCA Wauseon swap meet, everyone was taking about a guy who sold two saddlebags, brackets, and rear fender for $10,000 dollars. I couldn’t believe that someone would really pay that for just a few parts. I asked around to find out who was the guy that sold the parts, and come to find out it was an old friend Panhead Larry from Ohio! I stopped and asked Larry about the deal and what was the stuff to, the bags and fender where original paint from 1947 for Knucklehead! I asked Larry how he came up with the price of $10,000. Larry just looked at me and said “well I didn’t really want to sell them; I’ve had them forever and always thought maybe I’ll use them one day, I just needed some parts to put in my booth so they would let me camp!” Maybe there is hope for my Quantum 4 valve heads yet. If I wait 30 years and need some parts to put in my booth so they will let me camp at the swap meet, maybe I’ll be in luck. But the point is some parts are worth holding onto and asking a high price for. It’s always good to research what you have and if you don’t need to sell it hang on to it!