Classic Care

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The American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) expects record attendance at this year?s Vintage Motorcycle Days event scheduled for July 27-29.

For fans of classic motorcycles, and for those eager to enter the vintage hobby, Nationwide has teamed up with Mark Mederski, executive director of the Motorcycle Hall of Fame Museum, to offer tips for collecting and protecting vintage rides. He offers three expert tips for collectors:


  • Consider future costs. As you evaluate motorcycles in various conditions, place a high value on a running machine. Engine rebuilds and certain parts can drive up the price of your investment later.


  • Ride your motorcycle. This may sound counter-intuitive, but running the machine a few times a year will help the preservation process by keeping the fluids flowing and the parts moving.


  • Keep your paperwork. Documents chronicling a motorcycle's history will raise the value of your machine when you are ready to take it to auction or a private seller.


"Each enthusiast has their own reasons for entering the vintage hobby," says Mitch Roggemann, national sales director for Nationwide's Property & Casualty Specialty Products. "Whether you are restoring a bike to enjoy on a Sunday afternoon ride or collecting for investment purposes, you need to protect yourself with the proper insurance."

He suggests a few key considerations when purchasing insurance for vintage motorcycles:

  • Age. Nationwide policy holders will find a vintage bike program covers motorcycles over 25 years old, most on an "agreed-value" basis. Many times, premiums will be lower with a vintage bike because the agreed value is less than that of a new machine. Policies can differ, an agent can say when a bike qualifies for vintage insurance.


  • Location. Most companies require motorcycles insured under a vintage policy to be stored in a locked garage.


  • Towing and labor. Many insurers keep the mileage limits low on vintage policies, but you may still take your ride out for a spin occasionally. Make sure a policy includes towing and labor in case an unexpected breakdown occurs.


  • For more information about vintage collecting and insurance, see ama-cycle.org, motorcyclemuseum.org or nationwide.com.