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Old 10-05-2012, 03:46 PM   #1
JerryH OP
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long trips on small scooters

Has anybody ever here ever taken a long trip (at least 1000 miles or more) on a scooter no bigger than 150cc? I have traveled all over the country (33 states and part of Mexico) on large street bikes, either Goldwings or Japanese cruisers, almost all of it on interstates. I now have 3 scooters, a 2 stroke Stella, a Vino 125, and a Zuma 125. The Stella is my favorite by far, it is an absolute blast to ride around locally, and to tinker with. But I doubt it's reliability on a long trip. I am plotting a 1300+ mile trip across 3 states, avoiding freeways, and taking a different route there and back. Some of the roads I can only guess at, as they are only lines on maps, so I don't have a clue about road conditions. This will be pretty much restricted to AZ, NM, and TX, so cold weather should not be a problem. The Vino has over 20,000 miles on it, and has just been completely serviced, including new tires, belt, rollers, and valves. The Zuma is new and is just broken in. Either should be reliable. I realize there would probably be a big difference in traveling at highway speeds on freeways, and taking backroads on a small scooter. Both scooters drop below 40 mph on long climbs.

I read the story of Pete's trip to AK on a Genuine Rattler 110, but that is a LOT more than I had in mind. I just want to go out and spend a few days on the road in relatively safe conditions.
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Old 10-05-2012, 05:05 PM   #2
klaviator
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I've done a long trip on my 250 but never more than a few hundred miles on my 150.

Here's an interesting ride report from a couple who went around much of the world on a couple on Sym Simba's:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=716979
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Old 10-05-2012, 09:05 PM   #3
damasovi
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i HAVE NOT, other have

amigo, if you have the time then it is possible, some people have gone from Alaska to Patagonia (south America) on 50 cc honda cubs, so YES IT IS POSSIBLE and maybe not the best or "ideal" ride, how ever as I said, it can be done it is all about the time you have for touring.

1 thing I am consediring for my Baja tour on my scooter is gas, my Honda can only old 1.6 gallons and that translate to like 100-120 miles so aditional gas is mandatory, I am not an expert on the states you listed but I would advice on the extra gas, either the MSR 30 oz tanks or the plastics gas containers from walmart... and also study your route for gas stations, but here in Baja it would be a mandatory thing!

Damasovi
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Old 10-06-2012, 01:24 AM   #4
fullmetalscooter
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people have gone from india to England on 50c scooters. Read of 2 people taking a c3 cube 50 cc scooter from Vancouver to out east 5000 k . On steep hills they did 7 K per hour but those hill are long and go on and off for 50 Miles.
The first motorcycle trip accross the usa was 1903 on a 3.5 horse power motorcycle. It all depends on do you got the time to go slowly to where you want .
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Old 10-06-2012, 04:07 AM   #5
thunderkat59
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I did several hundred miles on my Stella and was fine. Very comfortable, relatively speaking.
Im in my mid 50's now, so I look at road trips differently before. Used to be on bigger bikes and fly down the back roads and highways. Now , I prefer to go slow and stretch the ride out for a while. Stop a few times, take in more of the world and relax. If your route is a good one, and you have time, I cant think of a reason why you wouldn't use a small bike. Sort of related, I tried to trade my Burgman even-up on both a Stella 150 4-t (not the PX150) and 125 in those flat black versions they have come out with, but no dealer will do it. Apparently lots of people think small bikes are the best.
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:46 AM   #6
JerryH OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thunderkat59 View Post
I did several hundred miles on my Stella and was fine. Very comfortable, relatively speaking.
Im in my mid 50's now, so I look at road trips differently before. Used to be on bigger bikes and fly down the back roads and highways. Now , I prefer to go slow and stretch the ride out for a while. Stop a few times, take in more of the world and relax. If your route is a good one, and you have time, I cant think of a reason why you wouldn't use a small bike. Sort of related, I tried to trade my Burgman even-up on both a Stella 150 4-t (not the PX150) and 125 in those flat black versions they have come out with, but no dealer will do it. Apparently lots of people think small bikes are the best.

The most I've done at once on my Stella was around 200 miles, all of it up in the mountains. The Stella has a huge advantage over a CVT scooter when climbing mountains. I live at 1200 feet, at the base of mountains that go up close to 10,000 feet. The Stella can be downshifted to keep the engine in the powerband and the rpms up. It's slow going, but won't do any damage. My Vino 125 simply will not climb those mountains. It lacks a low enough gear range, and bogs badly. When the speed dropped below 20 mph at full throttle, I turned around and went back. I later tried it again, with an inductive pickup tachometer hooked up to it, and the engine speed at full throttle on level ground was WAY higher than it was at full throttle climbing a long steep grade at 20 mph. It was so low when climbing that it was lugging the engine badly. Had I continued to ride it like that, the engine would have hammered itself to pieces.

When I did the 200 mile trip on the Stella, I was expecting a breakdown, and already had a rescue plan set up. A phone call and my former father in law would have been on his way with a truck.

I am 53, and also changing my views on riding. I now own and ride 3 small scooters. 20 years ago I wouldn't have been caught dead on a scooter. Of course, scooters were not nearly as popular then as they are now either.

I still have a Goldwing 1500, but plan on selling it soon. Several local members of some Goldwing forums I belong to are interested, so I shouldn't have to deal with Craigslist.

I sure wish someone would make a scooter similar to the Zuma 125, only make it 150cc, so it would be technically freeway legal, just in case, AND, give it a manual clutch and transmission. Then it could be ridden anywhere. I have climbed those same mountains many times on a 2 speed 50cc moped, in first gear, which is super low. Speeds got down to about 12 mph (still faster than a bicycle) but could be maintained indefinitely, because the engine was spinning at the same speed as it would have been at the mopeds top speed of 30 mph on a level road.


Back in the late '70s/early to mid '80s, I racked up 20,000 miles on a Puch moped, traveling all over the southwest. I rode it like a bicycle, on the shoulder, and never had any real problems with cars. I still have that moped, and have seriously considered getting it out of the shed and taking a 1000 mile trip on it. MUCH slower than a scooter on level roads, but at least it will climb. With the scooter, I have to take elevation into account as well. Not the case with the moped.


I have never ridden a Symba, but I used to own a Passport, and never did learn to deal with it's quirky transmission. It's neutral indicator was invisible in the AZ sun, and when coming to a stop, you had to be in neutral or first. If you stalled it, it was very difficult to find neutral, and if there was a very angry idiot in a lifted truck behind you, you couldn't just pull in the clutch and push it off the road. Plus the Symba has a 200 pound weight capacity, and I am 220 without any gear or cargo, so that would not work for me. A small motorcycle (I also used to have a Kawasaki Eliminator 125) might be just the ticket, but it had tube type tires and no centerstand, making it worthless on a long trip.

I looked to see if the Symba was still available, and found the SymWolf 150, a small 150cc motorcycle, freeway legal, 350 pound load capacity, and manual transmission. It also has a centerstand. I think I'm going to take a look at that thing.
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Old 10-07-2012, 11:36 AM   #7
thunderkat59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryH View Post
The most I've done at once on my Stella was around 200 miles, all of it up in the mountains.

--------


I looked to see if the Symba was still available, and found the SymWolf 150, a small 150cc motorcycle, freeway legal, 350 pound load capacity, and manual transmission. It also has a centerstand. I think I'm going to take a look at that thing.
I did a 300+ mile day on my 2002 Stella 2t that was rejetted and had a Simonini chamber. It was run WFO to keep up with the modded Vespa PX's in the hills of central PA, and it never missed a beat. Ran fantastically. I kick myself for ever getting rid of that scoot

I looked at these in person and was very pleasantly surprised. Might be something to consider:

http://www.clevelandcyclewerks.com/b...nd-cyclewerks/

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Old 06-25-2013, 05:45 AM   #8
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I've done 5500 Interstate miles on my Kymco GTi300 in the last 30 days. Pretty impressive motorcycle actually. It makes enough power to get the job done with ease.

Can't help you with the under 150 though. Never done it.
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Old 06-30-2013, 12:53 AM   #9
vt1099ace
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Check out www. Vespa360.com
P- series taken around the world! And then one final trip to put it in the vespa museum (that last rides is on youtube)
Try www. Hondavstheworld. Com
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Old 07-01-2013, 03:16 PM   #10
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When I was 16 I rode a Lambretta 2 stroke, 3 (4?) speed handlebar shift, pedal rear brake scooter from Norfolk, VA, to Siren WI (just east of Minneapolis, MN). I rode due west to Indianapolis, then north. It was the adventure of my young life. This was in 1959, so there wasn't much of an Interstate, mostly 2 lane roads the whole way. Good thing too because that Lambretta had a high speed of maybe 55 going downhill with wind at my back.

I loved that old scooter, my brother inherited it when I went into the Navy; then the baby brother got it after that.

This was my 2nd bike, the 1st being a 50 cc moped. After that I went through a couple Hondas, then settled on BMW boxers. Have done a lot of cross country on the beemers, but the Lambretta tour remains the high point of my touring memories.

Now, at 70, I'm going back full circle, back to a scooter again.
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Old 10-07-2012, 12:02 PM   #11
itsforrest
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryH View Post
...I looked to see if the Symba was still available, and found the SymWolf 150, a small 150cc motorcycle, freeway legal, 350 pound load capacity, and manual transmission. It also has a centerstand. I think I'm going to take a look at that thing.
I work in a scooter shop that is a SYM dealer. The Symba is still available. We have sold a few of them this summer. We have also sold a few of the Wolf 150. The Wolf is a very nicely made bike. A fellow came in on a Yamaha R6 and test rode the Wolf. When he came back he said the transmission was as smooth as any bike he had ridden and way nicer than his R6. Comparing the two, I was a bit surprised at how zippy the Symba is when I first rode it. The Wolf seems to be geared taller and is slower off the line but definitely is a better cruiser at higher speeds. I still wouldn't feel terribly comfortable on the freeway with the Wolfe. It can go 65 given the space to get there but there's nothing left in reserve to get out of the way of traffic.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:03 PM   #12
itsforrest
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I've had a chance to look at the Misfit up close but have not ridden one. In my opinion, the fit and finish on the SYM Wolf is a bit nicer than the Misfit. Here's an article reviewing both bikes:
http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/8/1310...ha-Misfit.aspx
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:21 PM   #13
V Saarela
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I ride a Honda Varadero 1000 summertime and a Honda CBR 600 wintertime. From time to time I do some scootrides. My rides have been a Honda ANF 125 Innova and Honda Zoomer(Ruckus) 50cc and the new Honda Vision 50cc.

This summer I made with the Innova a 25 hour ride and manage to get on this time 1720 kilometres(1068 miles)Honda.
With the ruckus(swedish ruckus have topspeed 42 kph/26mpg) when heading North cape I did one day 550 kms(342 miles).
This summer I have also been with the Vision 50cc at alps(Grossglockner, Dolomits, Stelvio etc)....have to push the moped few times
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Old 10-08-2012, 03:20 PM   #14
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Heres a Symba trip from California to Alaska.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=592359
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Old 10-09-2012, 02:55 PM   #15
JerryH OP
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Back when I was doing some long distance riding on a Honda Rebel, which does not have a centerstand, but does have tube type tires, I built a bolt on sidestand for the right side. Basically it was just a piece of 1/2" pipe welded to a flat 1/4" thick steel plate at an angle. I drilled 2 holes in the plate, that matched the holes on the footpeg bracket. To use it, I put a piece of 2x4 under the stock sidestand, to get the bike as vertical as possible, and to take some of the strain off the stock stand and it's welded on mounting bracket (I have seen more than one bike with the sidestand bracket broke right off the frame) Then I had to remove the right side footpeg bracket, push the bike to the left to raise the wheels off the ground, and bolt on the homemade stand to the frame to hold it in that position. A lot of trouble yes, and not something I would use for routine chain maintenance, but it could be a lifesaver out on the side of the road when you had a flat tire. Because it bolted to the bike with two bolts, there was no way it could slip and let the bike fall while a wheel was off. This worked on the Rebel, because of it's small size and light weight. It would not likely work on a large streetbike. I was going to make one to fit my XT225, which also has the left footpeg bracket attached with 2 bolts, but before I got around to it, I found the guy that was making the centerstands and immediately ordered one. Best investment I've ever made for that bike. I can now ride way out into the middle of nowhere, and not have to worry about flat tires. The XT225 is a small lightweight bike, and at home I often set it up on a 5 gallon bucket when I want both wheels off the ground at once. But you are not likely to find a 5 gallon bucket out on the trail.


I have asked a few Harley riders what they do in case of a flat tire while riding a bike with tube type tires, and their answer has always been the same. A cell phone and a road service plan. I sure hope they don't get stuck where their cell phone don't work. I'm thinking about getting one of those SPOT gadgets.


BTW, you can get aftermarket centerstands for both the DR650 and KLR650 from two or three different places. My former '01 KLR had one from DualStar.

Oh, and for something funny, not too long after getting my '09 Stella, I was riding with a few other Stella and vintage Vespa riders. We were not very far from civilization, but were out on the road nevertheless. Now, these scooters have a spare tire, just like a car, already mounted on a spare wheel. When the scooter is on the centerstand, unlike a motorcycle, where the rear wheel is off the ground, it is the front wheel that is off the ground. I carry a piece of 2x4 to shove under the gearbox to raise the rear end. But the one guy that had a flat had a performance exhaust, and it prevented removing the rear wheel. You first had to remove the exhaust, which was red hot. So we all spent about an hour waiting for the exhaust to cool and this guy to remove his exhaust, change the wheel, and put the exhaust back on. I guess he either never thought of that, or didn't care. If you are willing to spend the money, you can buy one piece wheels for the Stella and vintage Vespas that allow the use of tubeless tires. But I guess that isn't the status symbol that a loud aftermarket pipe is. Many riders used to remove their centerstands (back when many bikes actually came with them) to install an aftermarket exhaust. I guess I just think about things differently. I have never been a boy scout, but I am a firm believer in their motto "BE PREPARED"


It is also completely unnecessary for any motorcycle to even use tube type tires, especially one designed for road use. BMW has been using tubeless spoke type wheels for a long time, but apparently only on the models they build, not the chain drive singles. The R1200GS uses them, as did the R1200C. Honda used them way back in '86 on the '86 and '87 Rebel 450, The ONLY bike they ever used them on. Over a quarter century later, those wheels are still holding up fine.
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