Tips for Buying Your First Harley

Tips for Buying Your First Harley

by Chris Rutter July 13, 2021

There's no denying that buying your first motorcycle is an exciting time. While you may feel unsure about exactly what you want, you're filled with excitement and anticipation for a new ride. Many people browse various options, eventually choosing one of the most popular bikes available — a Harley-Davidson. From that point, you have to compare different models to select the one that works best for you.

Whether you choose to purchase a Harley-Davidson motorcycle because you have a close friend or relative that swears by the brand, or you did some research and think it's the right bike for you, Harley bikes are arguably the most famous motorcycles for a reason. Before you go straight to the dealership and purchase the first new and shiny Harley bike you spot, you'll want to think about what you're looking for in your first Harley-Davidson.

Guide to Buying Your First Harley

From the style to the performance, you should feel completely satisfied with your purchase — and that's where this guide can help.

Like any other significant investment, you want to ensure you put your money toward a motorcycle that speaks to you. It's likely a vehicle you'll ride every day, so the bike you choose should tick almost all of your boxes. From the style to the performance, you should feel completely satisfied with your purchase — and that's where this guide can help.

Whether you're a new rider or have been cruising on a motorcycle for years, purchasing your first Harley is a moment you'll always remember. Selecting a specific Harley-Davidson make and model is simple when you think about the bike's use, your own style and other factors that will ultimately help you make your decision.

Follow this helpful guide on how to buy your first Harley-Davidson bike to make the buying process quick and efficient, so you can get out on the road.

5 Things to Consider Before Buying Your First Harley

Purchase the perfect Harley motorcycle with the help of these tips and suggestions. Consider these five aspects before beginning your motorcycle shopping.

1. Decide on a Budget

Setting a price limit on your motorcycle purchase will help narrow down your selection. With numerous Harley bikes on the market at various prices, a budget can help give you a good idea of what styles and models of Harley motorcycles are best for you.

Determining your budget can lead you in different directions, like whether you can purchase a new or used Harley bike or if you can afford a bike that includes all of the fun bells and whistles. You can also research whether your local Harley dealer offers financing. Different payment options can help you adjust the details of your budget and define your motorcycle selection even further.

2. Prioritize Your Needs and Usage

You've likely decided to buy a Harley motorcycle because you love the brand — but what's your bike's main purpose? Some riders use their motorcycles as their primary form of transportation, while others cruise around on the weekends or special occasions. Your location is also an essential factor to consider. Living in a crowded city versus a rural town can lead you to different types of Harley bikes.

The size of the bike is another need to consider. Do you prefer a bulkier bike with a large engine or a bike that has a frame with a lot of negative space? You can choose the size of the bike based on your personal style or the comfortability you'll have while riding your new Harley. 

You should also prioritize your experience level before you purchase a Harley. You'll want to find a bike you can operate safely but allows you to grow as a rider. Research the handling of different Harley models to see which one will fit your lifestyle and experience level. Certain bikes also handle better when you're riding in specific locations, like riding a Touring bike on long-distance trips or a Sportster on city streets.

3. Determine Maintenance Responsibilities

Determine Maintenance Responsibilities

Is the bike you're considering easy or complicated to perform maintenance on? Some Harley motorcycles have simple service solutions you can accomplish on your own, but others are more complex. Consider possible maintenance costs and find a reputable shop that can perform maintenance on Harley-Davidson bikes.

It's also helpful to learn a few basic maintenance tasks that are universal in the motorcycle world if you're a new rider. This knowledge will come in handy if something goes wrong while you're cruising and need to repair before you make your way home or to a mechanic. Keep in mind that eventually, all motorcycles will encounter maintenance issues, so it helps to have a few maintenance tricks under your belt.

4. Test Ride the Bike

You've found a few solid choices for your new Harley bike and want to see which one would be the best fit. Now, it's time to take the bikes for a spin. Test riding your bike options is a must before buying one.

A specific bike may look amazing — but that doesn't mean you'll enjoy the ride or handling of the motorcycle. Comfortability while riding a motorcycle is crucial, especially if you plan on long-distance rides or commuting to work on your Harley. If you're a new motorcycle owner, ask the dealer questions to help steer you in the right direction to find a bike that makes you feel comfortable.

When you test ride motorcycles, think about what aspects you like most. For example, consider the size, the frame, the tires, the handlebars and other features that affect your comfort level on the bike.

5. Think About Aftermarket Parts

Some riders like to buy their bikes with all of the updated features and add-ons available, while others perform to customize their motorcycles by themselves. If you want to add your own aftermarket parts to your bike, it's beneficial to find a Harley that gives you the most opportunities to do so.

Some models, such as the Harley-Davidson Electra Glide, are the perfect clean slate, allowing you to add numerous features on your own. You can install parts like audio systems, LED lights, tires, fenders and other components to make the bike unique to you.

Contact Fat Head Cycles for Service, Parts and Accessories

For most riders, Harleys are more than just vehicles. These bikes inspire a passion that motorcycle enthusiasts worldwide take pride in. You can find high-quality parts, accessories and other motorcycle apparel to enhance your Harley experience at Fat Head Cycles. No matter what make or model you choose for your first Harley, you can rest assured we have you covered for all the extras that come with owning a bike, including motorcycle maintenance.

Contact us to learn more about our Harley-Davidson products and services today!

Contact Fat Head Cycles for Service, Parts and Accessories

Chris Rutter
Chris Rutter


Also in Harley-Davidson News

How to Wash Your Harley
How to Wash Your Harley

by Chris Rutter August 02, 2021

Understanding how to wash a Harley is an essential step to properly maintaining your bike. Over time, your bike will naturally attract various substances from riding on the open road, including dirt, insects, oil, grease and even brake dust.

Read More

How to Customize a Road Glide
How to Customize a Road Glide

by Chris Rutter May 26, 2021

Motorcycle enthusiasts can ride their bikes to complete errands or commute to work, but it's also a lifestyle. You can make your bike a hobby instead of just a form of transportation, and one of the best parts about a motorcycle hobby is customizing your bike to make it uniquely yours.

Read More

Guide to Motorcycle Helmets
Guide to Motorcycle Helmets

by Chris Rutter May 26, 2021

Thrill-seekers and commuters all have something in common when it comes to motorcycles — the feeling of cruising down a road on your bike doesn't compare to any other vehicle.

Read More

New WIRELESS Audio Systems

You asked, we listened!
We'd like to introduce to you a New Wireless Apply CarPlay & Android Auto Audio System available for your Harley Davidson!

It's WIRELESS! That's right, no more plugging in your phone or messing with cords! Available for purchase TODAY!

Fits '15-'21 Road Glide - Here's a link to our New Sound Storm Labs DD999ACPW PLUG & PLAY BUNDLE W/ Wireless Car Play & Android Auto
Fits '99-'13 Electra and Street Glides - Here's a link to our New Sound Storm Labs DD999ACPW PLUG & PLAY BUNDLE W/ Wireless Car Play & Android Auto w/ Metra 95-HDIF Inner Fairing '99-'13