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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, dont really know if this is appropriate on this board but I thought you lot would be as knowledgable as anybody.

I'm from Australia and looking into coming over for BornFree this year. The plan would be to scout out some potential bikes from home, and purchase one when I arrive in Cali, do the trip to BF and have a blast of a time.

My question is, are there any arrangements for registering a bike to a non-US resident?

Once I'm done I'd like to ship the bike back to my home. Importing into Australia isnt really a problem, but I'm finding it hard to get information about exporting from the US. I've read that the person exporting the motorcycle has to hold the current registration to pass customs.

Not relevent I suppose but I am looking at pans/early shovels in stock frames with original matching cases.

Any help would be very welcome here, Thanks in advance.
 

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Contact a shipping agent in California and they'll tell you exactly what they need. Make sure you get your import approval from the Au authorities before shipping, I've heard stories of people getting their bikes crushed because they didn't have the approval when it arrived.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yes im aware of our import approval. Application for import can't be lodged until you have purchased a bike, or guaranteed the sale of one that you want, engine numbers etc have to be on the application, and it apparently takes 4-6 weeks to approve.

Nothing is easy anymore
 

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I got my approval in a couple of weeks but you know how these things go when you actually need them in a rush! I never did import my car (it's sat in my wifes Grandpa's barn) as i'm moving over to SoCal next March otherwise i could have been of more help.

Make sure you get a quote on the handling fees this end as well. Example: I had all my triumph parts handle and shipped from LA, cost $250. Handling fees etc... in Bribane, over $700! It was still worth it but what a rip off!

Apologies if you know all this.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Can never have too much information - I've never done it before.


Has anybody had any experiences or have a recomendation of motorcycle exporters operation out of the CA area?

Some of the websites of these busineses look dodgy at best
 

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there is a shipping company here in Long Beach CA that exports hundreds of Knuckles, Pans, generator Shovels, and every kind of valuable Triumph every month.
All bound for Australia and Japan.
I dropped off a bike there for a Ebay customer and was shocked at the number of bikes leaving the country, I pushed it up and placed it in the area of 75 other bikes scheduled to be put into this weeks container.

I guess this is that "Change" our commander and chief was talking about.
 

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You need a title and a Bill of Sale.

Import approval is $50, piece of piss to do and all via email. You will need pics of the bike, copy of the title and Bill of Sale if I recall correctly???

Buy a bike as stock as possible. Make sure the numbers on the title and Bill of Sale match the bike - exactly!!

Make sure its VERY clean when its dropped off. Cleaning charges here are VERY expensive.

Do you research re rego back here. Pre 89 bikes are HEAPS easier and cheaper, process varies state to state, most require an engineer inspection or mod plate to essientally state they comply with the ADR's of the year it was made. Post Dec 88 allow at least $2500 for complaince plus the normal other fees. Pre 74 (?) no need for the plate - just dont tell them it was an import ;)

Best approach will be to engage someone here to sort it before you leave. If you are in NSW Wayne is the man to deal with. His business and user name here is Choppaweeza. In WA I have used Lee at Import Perfection many times and the service is awesome. Normally approx $1200-$1500 for the shipping, couple hundred more for AQIS. Im using Foytt in Qld and am a little underwhelmed by the customer service, delays etc.

Any other questions fire away. I have 2 on the dock as I type and another 5 coming.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the long post Pete. First hand experience is the best kind. Not sure if you missed it in the first post but i am after a pan or genny shov so lots of ADRs don't apply. Im in SA so we don't have mod plates, basically once you have your bike, it requires an inspection for rego at which time you will present your import approval papers.

If I purchase a bike in the US and then hold the title in my possession, what else do i need to do to ride legally?
 

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I'm from Australia and looking into coming over for BornFree this year. The plan would be to scout out some potential bikes from home, and purchase one when I arrive in Cali, do the trip to BF and have a blast of a time..
A lot of shipping info was given here by others, nothing much I can ad to that.. (drain the gas and disconnect the battery before you deliver your bike to the shippers, if it has saddlebags leave them empty because what's in there will be gone when you receive the bike overseas..)

When you are planning to ride your purchased bike in Califa, make sure you work something out about insurance.. or try to work out a deal with the seller that you ride around a few days with his insurance..
 

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No worries mate, happy to help. Wasnt there a car guy who used to advertise in Unique Cars years ago that lived your way? Gasoline Alley or similar?
 

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Pete has covered most of it. Easiest is a pre 1974 bike, make sure it has a clear title & all numbers match up, no funny business.

I have a really good shipper in Melbourne if that helps. He has depots in LA & San Francisco. You're right about the dodgy shippers, there are many out there.

Good luck, it sounds like fun..
 

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Call me on 0425 216326 and I'll explain everything in plain English . I export bikes from Longbeach to Sydney every 8 weeks . Did 240 bikes last year alone . About 50 of those were ridden in the USA by their owners before being exported as part of our Fly/Ride/Import deal . Straight forward if you know how . I have 3 clients touring the US at the moment for example .


The warehouse Tony saw was probably the one we sublease . 8 other Exporters use the same space and there are up to 200 bikes there at any given time .


Wayne -
Chopaweeza Enterprises Australia
Motorcycle Importation Services
 

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Dude, if your in Sydney, pm me and I'll hook you up with an importer. He is cheaper than all the other sharks and know his shit. I've had some unpleasant experiences with guys importing cars and parts etc. This guy delivered what he said. Stick to pre 89 and your fine. As long as you have import approval and title, your sorted. My guy looks after the rest. All you need to do is drop it at his address in longbeach and pick it up in Sydney when it arrives. Count on 10% gst when it lands. Bastards bend you over though because it's on price of the bike+ shipping eg; $6000 for the bike and $1000 for shipping, they slug you $700! Here's the scam. Get the seller to put a lower value eg; $2000 and you save dollars my friend! Have any idea what you want to buy?
 

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.. Here's the scam. Get the seller to put a lower value eg; $2000 and you save dollars my friend! Have any idea what you want to buy?
Carefull though.. if customs "think" it's to low of a value for the type of bike they will hold on to your bike and start an investigation.. it happened to me about 15 years ago.. then I called the custom officer and he said: "Ok, I can give you one chance..how much are we going to put on there as a realistic value..? $ 10.000 ?"

(He was spot on dammit !)
 

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some guy last year in NZ had a BMW and Mec ? confiscated and destroyed by customs, had to pay storage fees for 18 months while it went through the system, court fees, solicitor fees, shipping fee's all because he lowered the buy price to save $1600,
same deal, one customs officer thought the cars were to cheap.

Carefull though.. if customs "think" it's to low of a value for the type of bike they will hold on to your bike and start an investigation.. it happened to me about 15 years ago.. then I called the custom officer and he said: "Ok, I can give you one chance..how much are we going to put on there as a realistic value..? $ 10.000 ?"

(He was spot on dammit !)
 

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Dont risk it all to save hundreds. I ALWAYS have a copy of the funds transfer for each bike as proof of what I paid for it.
 
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