There are few things worse than searching for motorcycle parts and finding that genuine parts are astronomically priced. Whether something has broken down or you had a small accident, you don’t then want to be presented with a huge bill for parts, you might think it’s easy to locate second-hand parts, but then you perform a basic search on eBay and produce nothing. So, what to do next? Check out our tips on finding motorcycle parts, and you’ll be in a far better position to secure those hard-to-find parts without having to take out a second mortgage. We’ll be concentrating on eBay but stick around until the end for more places where you can find the parts you need.
Search for Different Variations of Part Names
Don’t limit your search for the most-used name. That costly plastic body work you’re looking for could be listed as nose, bodywork, panel, cowlings, fairing, or something else. If you search for only one name, you might just miss out on what you’re looking for.
Locate the Part Numbers
Find the part numbers for the parts you’re trying to find. You can visit a site like Fowler’s website where they offer useful parts diagrams. Enter the number when searching for parts, which can highlight other years and models that share the same part. The Yamaha FZS600 2002-03, for example, shares mirrors and headlight clusters with the FZS1000. Conversely, you should also confirm if a part is different and not compatible.
You can use the diagrams to find an official name for a part that is less obviously named. For example, indicators are termed ‘winkers’ by Honda. You may also find generic parts such as o-rings and bolts, which are shared with non-motorcycle kit, such as Honda generators.
Use the eBay Advanced Search Function
You can use certain symbols, like commas and braces, when searching for parts, as well as use a minus before words to exclude certain words. This means you won’t be wasting time searing for each name separately and remove those parts of the search you may not be interested in. If you’re looking for downpipes, for example, but your search results are only showing you new gasket sets, try searching for (downpipes, headers, exhausts) -gasket.
Go Even Further With eBay
Search on other eBay sites, like eBay.nl, eBay.it. eBay.fr., and eBay.de. You’ll often find items on these sites that aren’t available for worldwide postage, but that isn’t the case with all of them. You could also apply a worldwide search on the eBay site in your own country.
Alternatively, you could get in touch with the seller of an item from another eBay site that shows worldwide postage as an option and see if you can agree on a postage price.
You can visit the Google Translate website to locate names for items listed in a foreign language (or simply search foreign part supplies by product code). A radiator, for example, is radiatore in Italian, radiateur in French, kühler in German.
Once you have a few items in your watchlist, you’ll be able to access them again from your home country eBay account to quickly and easily contact sellers and make your purchase using the eBay interface you’re used to.
A Broken Bike
Look for eBay sellers who are taking their bike apart, as many of the parts may be parts that you’re looking for. So get in touch with the seller and find out what parts they have available, as many sellers will only list a small number of them in the description. You may even be able to negotiate a deal on multiple parts.
Keep Your Eyes Open
For those parts that are proving the hardest to find, save a search on eBay that covers all part names, translations, and numbers so that you’re sent an email alert as soon as a part is listed.
Avoid Being Ripped Off
Make sure you know your numbers etc. when it comes to current prices and availability, as new, genuine parts may be less expensive than you might think. Many of the used parts you’ll find on eBay aren’t much cheaper than new parts. Knowing what a part is worth in the current marketplace will help you avoid overbidding on eBay.
Look Beyond eBay
As well as eBay, you should visit groups in the Facebook marketplace, as well as owners’ forums. While you might be hard-pressed to find specialty sites that have the parts you want, there are a few exceptions, such as Tokyo Mods, so you’ll certainly want to spread your wings beyond eBay when searching for those hard-to-find parts.
I’m a 40 something father of two girls who loves the mountains, still plays in the sand and enjoys being in the great outdoors. The mountains are always calling my name.
“Wilderness is a necessity” – John Muir