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Old 10-21-2013, 04:01 AM   #1
Shepski OP
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Our Scooter Story So Far

I have been riding motorcycles and scooters constantly since i was 16 years of age. This was my first scooter bought with a loan from my father on my 16th Birthday. A Honda Camino 205 brand new on the road including a years insurance that was 1978, i am now 51. It was such a good deal, so many of my friends bought these, and we nearly all went on to pass our full motorcycle licence and then purchase many more Hondas . It was a 50cc 2 stroke and i travelled over 12000 miles in 2 years, never really had a problem apart from the fact it would stop in the rain, water on the electrics.



Many years later, i saw for sale in amazing condition a Honda C90, on a whim i bought it. I used it for the next 2 years, i loved the motor, but could not really get on with the "crash" gearbox, so i had scratched an itch to ride the iconic Honda, but it was not really for me



I then left scooters for a while, and moved onto cars and motorcycles, but then one day i bought on a whim an Italjet Dragstar all sprayed up in the Italjet Factory race colours, this scooter was really for my 16 year old son, to be honest like all 50cc scooters in Great Britain it was restricted to a maximum speed of 30Mph, it was dangerous. So a quick bit of grinding down the exhaust manifold to remove the built in restriction washer and it was suddenly up to 60+ Mph and now so much fun to ride, Very trick bike with a screaming water cooled 2 stroke motor.



As i was not able to use this scooter, i had already lost it to my son, i bought myself a 100cc Peugeot Trekker scooter another 2 stroke. This was a good workmanlike scooter, allways reliable and quite good fun to ride, similar performance to the Italjet but more torque





Then i got a divorce, lost nearly everything, so i moved to Turkey for 5 years to live on a yacht that i had bought ( this was one of the best moves i ever made, away from the rat race, and cruising around the wonderfull Turkish coast and also Greek Islands) but i needed transport for times in port. So i bought a brand new Honda Activa. This was a very popular scooter in Turkey they are made in India and have a 110cc 4 stroke motor. It was a very well made scooter, totally reliable, and cheap to buy, mine was just under 1000 on the road. We used this scooter for 2 years and racked up nearly 12000 trouble free miles.



We then had a great deal on a Vespa Gran Turismo 200 we bought this bike with only 400 miles on the clock from a local millionaire who had ordered the scooter new but with the wrong seat colour he wanted brown, i kid you not, so it had to be sold! and over the next 3 years, we brought that mileage up to 22,000 Miles all without any problem. We then sold the Vespa and unfortunately returned back to reality in Great Britain. The lady with the Vespa looking very tired is now my 2nd wife, we brought this scooter from Bodrum over to Iran, this picture was taken on the return journey, many road miles. we have now been together for over 10 years, she has a full motorcycle licence and loves motorbikes and scooters



This is a much better picture



But now we have bought 2 new scooters ready for the return to Greece, We have bought a house in Greece and because my income is internet based we will live out there, i love the Med and dislike with a passion Great Britain. Wet, Cold, Overcrowded and crazy expensive, rip off Britain.

So i have bought a 2010 Honda 125 S Wing. I bought this on Ebay it only has 1400 Miles and the condition is literally new. I dont thing you get these scooters in the USA they are a real luxury scooter, expensive in the UK but nice quality. It really rides well. Same engine as the SH125



My wife has bought an unwanted prize ! it is a Vespa 125 LX 3V and all in HP colours, It is brand new, lovely looking scooter. These scooters will be going shortly to Greece in the van and will be our primary means of transport.



That is our scooter story to date,

what is your story?
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Shepski screwed with this post 10-21-2013 at 06:02 AM
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Old 10-21-2013, 09:04 AM   #2
CaptnJim
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Nice intro.

I never wanted a scooter. Been with my wife for 42 years; we were high school sweethearts. I taught her to ride when she was 16 on my Triumph Bonneville. We've had a bunch of motorcycles over the years, but when we retired, she sold her last one. I had a BMW RT that wasn't getting used much because we were off cruising on our boat. I sold the BMW and about 4 months later, my wife thought I needed another motorcycle. Bought a V-Strom. Didn't ride it much, 'cause she didn't want to ride on the back and I preferred to have her along.

I was about ready to sell the V-Strom and give up two-wheels when she said, "Let's buy a pair of scooters." No idea where that came from. I did the research, we shopped around, and decided the Honda PCX would suit our needs (didn't know I had a need).

Damn! Someone shoulda told me these things are this much FUN! I look forward to any reason to get out on the scoot. Don't need a reason. I totally get the whole scooter thing, now.

This is my first wife. She doesn't let me date anymore, so will probably be the last one, too. Although I did point out an interesting motorsailor to her last year... it had been sitting a while and could be bought at a VERY good price. It needed some work, but was a good "over the horizon" boat. I took her to see it. She looked at the teak deck, the faded sail covers, and said, "You can do that with your next wife."

So, there are options.

That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

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Old 10-21-2013, 01:04 PM   #3
JerryH
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That first picture is not a scooter at all, but a moped. A read pedal moped. I have owned several of them, but none were Hondas. I still have a 1980 Puch Newport II that I ride around once in a while. 30 mph top speed.

And I have to agree with you about the transmission on the C90. I had one of those too. It had a rotary transmission that went around in circles, no stop at the bottom or top. And no clutch. So if you stalled it in gear at a stoplight, and a big truck was behind you, it was almost impossible to find neutral, and you couldn't just pull in the clutch and restart it in gear. Downright scary.
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Old 10-21-2013, 01:05 PM   #4
DandyDoug
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Shepski , while your new wife looks more like she could be your daughter , you get my applause for keeping on with life and doing it well

Captain, listen to your wife, all that teak and sail stuff is best left to your next wife.
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Old 10-21-2013, 02:24 PM   #5
Shepski OP
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Dandy we do have quite an age difference BUT we very much have the same interests which is why we are strong together. Also a bit spooky Captain how i ended up with my 2nd wife on a sailboat, that was the happiest time of my life

Now any more scooter stories? what is your history with scooters?
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Old 10-21-2013, 02:30 PM   #6
Shepski OP
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Jerry

I have never ridden a Vespa or Lambretta with a gearbox only CVT how do they compare with the C90?

i liked the motor on the C90 but i really did not like the shifting or front suspension that was not nice.

This new Honda S Swing 125 is the business, fabulous quality but very pricey in the UK. A new Honda PCX 125 is 2600 a Honda SH125 is 2850 and the S Wing 125 is 4000 or $6500 so it was not a big seller !!!

i bought mine for 1800 with only 1500 miles on the clock, i love it.

My wifes Vespa was won in a prize from HP. The winner does not ride so we bought it on Ebay. New in the UK they are 3000 this one was 1800 so major league bargain. We have been lucky with scooters recently
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Old 10-21-2013, 03:04 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Shepski View Post
Dandy we do have quite an age difference BUT we very much have the same interests which is why we are strong together. Also a bit spooky Captain how i ended up with my 2nd wife on a sailboat, that was the happiest time of my life

Now any more scooter stories? what is your history with scooters?
My current ( 3rd and last wife, they do trade you to the other team after three you know )
Poor woman turns green just walking down the dock, so I decided to give up boats of all type ( I am a life long sailor )
She still rides pillion occasionally , but earned her stripes a long time ago in very inclement weather so i am not complaining.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:04 PM   #8
JerryH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shepski View Post
Jerry

I have never ridden a Vespa or Lambretta with a gearbox only CVT how do they compare with the C90?

i liked the motor on the C90 but i really did not like the shifting or front suspension that was not nice.

This new Honda S Swing 125 is the business, fabulous quality but very pricey in the UK. A new Honda PCX 125 is 2600 a Honda SH125 is 2850 and the S Wing 125 is 4000 or $6500 so it was not a big seller !!!

i bought mine for 1800 with only 1500 miles on the clock, i love it.

My wifes Vespa was won in a prize from HP. The winner does not ride so we bought it on Ebay. New in the UK they are 3000 this one was 1800 so major league bargain. We have been lucky with scooters recently

The C90 has that weird clutchless transmission which I never got the hang of.

A CVT scooter is a get on and ride proposition, no clutch. The biggest drawback to this type of scooter is it's very limited gear range. It is impossible to keep the engine spinning in the powerband on small displacement scooters while climbing. You expect the scooter to slow down, but the engine slows down with it. You cannot keep the engine running fast while the scooter is going slow. A manual transmission scooter, like the old Vespas and Lambrettas have a much lower gear, so you can keep the engine spinning fast while the scooter is going really slow uphill. Small engines make power with rpm, and you need to keep them spinning when you need more power, like while climbing. A CVT will not allow you to do this. Another issue with CVT scooters is the drive belt. I just had a nearly new belt break on me 35 miles from home. It could have been several hundred miles, and I would have been in trouble. I did not expect such a failure on a Japanese scooter with an oem belt. Now I'm not sure just how far I trust belt drives, and every single scooter sold in the U.S. has one.

The manual shift Vespa is a lot easier to shift than a C90, and has a clutch. Both the clutch and shifter are on the left handlebar side. The clutch lever works in the normal way, and you twist the grip to shift. The whole thing turns, clutch lever and all. Very easy once you get used to it. And no getting stuck on the road with it in gear. If necessary you can just pull in the clutch and push it off the road.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:37 PM   #9
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The C90 is not clutchless.

It's a semiauto-clutch with a 3 speed synchro transmission.

It has a stem off the shifter shaft that works a release mechanism on a adjustable ramp that pushes in the clutch when you depress the gears, either up or down. So the transmission is not engaged with the engine when the gears change.

When you release the shift pedal the clutch re-engages. It's quite simple and very positive.

The only thing analogous to it is the old Fictel-Sachs Saxomat 'automatics' used with old SAABs and VW Beetles and Type III's, and they used engine vacuum servos and electric contacts.

The auto part of the Honda semiauto clutch engages normally when you rev the engine up from idle.
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Old 10-22-2013, 01:48 PM   #10
kyhillbilly
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Man I really dig the modern vespas! I have a feeling I may bid farewell to my ninja 250 this spring and start the hunt for a gt200, gts,250 or maybe even a s150.
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Old 10-22-2013, 09:17 PM   #11
JerryH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YamaGeek View Post
The C90 is not clutchless.

It's a semiauto-clutch with a 3 speed synchro transmission.

It has a stem off the shifter shaft that works a release mechanism on a adjustable ramp that pushes in the clutch when you depress the gears, either up or down. So the transmission is not engaged with the engine when the gears change.

When you release the shift pedal the clutch re-engages. It's quite simple and very positive.

The only thing analogous to it is the old Fictel-Sachs Saxomat 'automatics' used with old SAABs and VW Beetles and Type III's, and they used engine vacuum servos and electric contacts.

The auto part of the Honda semiauto clutch engages normally when you rev the engine up from idle.

What I meant was, it didn't have a manual clutch. So if the engine stalled in gear on the street, in traffic, you were stuck. You couldn't just pull in the clutch and push it off the road. And it was much more difficult to find neutral because of the weird shift pattern. instead of 1-N-2-3-4, and then back down again, it just kept going, in either direction N-1-2-3-4-N-1-2-3-4-N over and over again. So it was easy for someone familiar with the standard STOP 1-N-2-3-4 STOP motorcycle shift pattern to get lost
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Old 10-24-2013, 12:55 PM   #12
klx250sfguy
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There is an art to riding these bikes well. You'd think semi-automatic=easier. Nope. I find that I can ride smoothly if I shift into second relatively quickly, or start off in second and make my way to third fast. I corner in third gear a lot. When stopping or slowing down I wait til I'm almost stopped before taking my foot off the lever to engage second ... otherwise its abrupt and the tire chirps. Takes practice but once you got it, you got it.
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Old 10-24-2013, 01:01 PM   #13
klx250sfguy
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In terms of my scooter story, I rented one in Victoria BC back in 1990 and was hooked. I got my motorcycle license two years later, rented another in France, bought my first scoot in 1997, a Honda Elite 250, paid $600 for it. I've owned other bikes before and after but will always have a soft spot for scoots. I've owned 6 or 7 in total.
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