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Old 10-10-2012, 02:19 AM   #31
JerryH OP
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Believe it or not, you can lay an 1800 Goldwing on it's side to remove and replace the rear wheel. I have seen a picture of a brand new 2012 Goldwing laying on it's side, on purpose. I almost cried. That's a $30K bike. I would only lay a bike on it's side to fix a flat if it were pretty much a life or death situation. Nine times out of ten when I remove the tube from a flat tire, I find it pretty well shredded. Most stock tubes are paper thin. I have the 4mm thick "monster tubes" from DualStar on my XT. They can sometimes be patched. The thin ones tend to pop like a balloon. And if they don't, by the time you manage to get stopped, whatever punctured the tube has wiggled around and cut it to pieces. A tube type tire also tends to go flat all at once, while a tubeless tire loses air slowly, giving you time to tell something is wrong and get slowed down. A flat with a tube type tire at 75 mph is no fun, and your chances of crashing are high. My '09 Stella came with tubeless tires, for some unknown reason. I got the olive green color, which was supposed to come with wide whitewalls. I changed out the tires shortly after getting it home. I had a hard time getting those tubeless tires off, the whitewalls went on easily. They are the same size as my Vino uses, and I used them on it. I just replaced the last one. Don't remember the brand, but they lasted longer than the stock Vino 125 tires.

I am so tempted to get a Symba, my local SYM dealer has a red one for a really good price. This dealer does not charge all the bogus fees most dealers do. But being 6' 220 with a 34" inseam, riding it any distance with the stock seat would be impossible, and if I got the long seat, there wouldn't be any room to carry anything. I didn't even fit on a stock Rebel, I made brackets to install highway pegs 6" forward of the stock pegs, and had the seat redesigned by a local shop. I kind of regret selling the Rebel, it was not only freeway legal, but freeway capable, with a top speed of 80 mph. And according to the administrator of a rebel forum I belonged too, he put 80,000 miles on a Rebel at WOT with no issues, until the valves finally ate themselves. 80,000 miles on a Rebel is hard for me to comprehend.

BTW, thanks for posting all the ride reports, I am reading them all, and starting to get really enthusiastic about going somewhere. Probably on the Zuma 125. It has better tires and suspension than the Vino, more load capacity, and seems slightly faster. I already have a rack and top box ordered for it, and you can get huge saddlebags that fit it. Not planning anything crazy for the moment, though that sure sounds like fun. I'll start out with a few 1000 mile or so overnight round trips, and stay in a fleabag motel. I've decided the Stella is simply not reliable enough to cruise all day at full throttle, it still has a completely stock LML engine, with the cheap crank that is known to fail easily. Besides, while plastic Japanese scooters are nothing special, and are easily replaced, a 2 stroke Stella is a different matter. I keep mine polished and waxed. They are not replaceable, as they are no longer made, and I intend to keep it for the rest of my life. Parts are plentiful, and it can be rebuilt forever, as long as isn't crashed. The Stella IS basically a vintage Vespa.

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Old 10-10-2012, 09:42 AM   #32
chazbird
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The Symba has a center stand as standard. The 200 lb weight seems to be arbitrary, since they upped the weight capability (for Americans?). I weigh 160 and would feel comfortable carrying another 50-75 pounds on the Symba. (My groceries weigh 30+) I also have a C70 Passport and the Symba does everything three times better, but for some reason I can't part with the Passport. Anyway, the Symba is good for 35 mph all day long, maybe 48-50 WOT. I've easily toured on my Piaggio BV250 with no concerns about keeping up on freeways, however the Symba is strictly no interstates/freeways - but it too would be a good tour mount since it is really quite fun although you'd need additional fuel if you're out west and while the seat is comfy it is too short, go for the long seat (if available). With the stock seat you have to saw off the the top portion of the passenger handrail behind the seat, it bashes into your lower back and is quite the torture device.
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:31 PM   #33
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You definitely can tour on a scooter. I rode almost 500 miles in one day on my PCX to go ride the Tail of the Dragon with some Rucks: http://hondapcx.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=85

It was loads of fun. I wouldn't hesitate to do it again.

I've had countless 100-300 mile days messing around in the North Georgia mountains, hitting Wolf Pen Gap, stopping in Helen to go tubing, etc...
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:29 PM   #34
JerryH OP
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The Symba has a center stand as standard. The 200 lb weight seems to be arbitrary, since they upped the weight capability (for Americans?). I weigh 160 and would feel comfortable carrying another 50-75 pounds on the Symba. (My groceries weigh 30+) I also have a C70 Passport and the Symba does everything three times better, but for some reason I can't part with the Passport. Anyway, the Symba is good for 35 mph all day long, maybe 48-50 WOT. I've easily toured on my Piaggio BV250 with no concerns about keeping up on freeways, however the Symba is strictly no interstates/freeways - but it too would be a good tour mount since it is really quite fun although you'd need additional fuel if you're out west and while the seat is comfy it is too short, go for the long seat (if available). With the stock seat you have to saw off the the top portion of the passenger handrail behind the seat, it bashes into your lower back and is quite the torture device.

According to the SYM site, the Symba sold in the U.S. has a load capacity of 300 pounds. I weigh 220. with some gear and supplies for a 1000 mile or so road trip (mostly just stuff to repair and maintain the bike) I would be pretty close to that 300 pounds. I used to have an '07 Honda Met, which had a load capacity of 274 pounds, and I rode that with no problems, but rarely over 300 miles at the time. I mostly carried stuff to fix flats. My main interest in the Symba, besides it's looks, is it's manual transmission. I would be able to go places with it a small scooter cannot go, due to the limitations of it's CVT. I live at 1200 feet, and within 160 miles you can get to nearly 10,000 feet. There are a lot of long steep climbs in those 160 miles that a 125cc CVT scooter just won't handle. I have made that trip on a 50cc moped, but it was a 2 speed automatic, and had a centrifugally shifted transmission. When climbing at low speeds, it shifted down into first gear, and the engines rpms went way up, giving it power to climb, and preventing lugging the engine. Sometimes it would shift into second, and I would have to back off on the throttle slightly to get it back into first. A manual shift 125-150cc scooter would be great. I wonder why someone hasn't made one. You could build a modern (reliable) scooter like the Zuma 125 or the PCX 150, with a twist grip shifter like the Stella and vintage Vespas. Seems like a good idea to me, but maybe there is no market for such a bike.
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:40 PM   #35
chazbird
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I had a old Lambretta 175 with a clutch/4 speed transmission but nowadays I think scooters are thought of as synonymous with automatics. I haven't put a ton of miles on the Symba yet, but it seems tough and capable to tour on. About 12 years ago I did a killer ride in Vietnam on a 100cc Honda step through (AKA Symba like bike) way up in the highlands, south to roads, probably 800-1000 miles on all sorts of bad roads (also in Laos and Cambodia, but different trips). Anyway, there was nothing more suitable for the task. Giant Soviet military 4 wheel drive rescue tow trucks were getting stuck, even with their PTO cables on large trees. But I could push and paddle the bike through the worst of it, keeping it in gear and walking it. On a bike with a manual clutch it would have been the end, as would have a scooter with a CVT too. Aside from being a fine very small scale tour bike I am pretty sure it is the ultimate adventure bike. I've found that on the micro bikes you ride for 80-150 miles a day and you're done. But it seems you see and experience so much more.
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Old 10-12-2012, 07:25 AM   #36
JerryH OP
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I have put 400 miles a day on my Vino 125 dozens of times, but only on mostly level paved roads. Mountains are off limits, as are riding through sand or mud. My new Zuma 125 seems to be pretty much the same as the Vino, just a different look. The Stella has a manual transmission and clutch, and will climb mountains, but it still has the stock LML engine, which is not of the best quality. I don't want to get to far away on it, if it breaks down, I have no idea how to get it back. I also value the Stella more than the Japanese scooters. Despite being made in India, it has the same character and soul as a vintage Vespa, and can be kept going forever with vintage Vespa parts, which, just like air cooled VW bug parts, are plentiful.

The more I think about it, the more I want to add a Symba to my collection. I still wish it were 150cc, so it would be freeway legal. Not that I would want to cross the country on freeways on it, but at least you wouldn't get busted if you needed to get on a freeway for a short time. I seriously considered the PCX150 before getting the Zuma, it seemed to have similar performance, but was freeway legal. I eventually decided against it because of the absurd valve adjustment procedure, which required practically taking the whole scooter apart. 10 minute job on the Zuma and Vino.
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Old 10-12-2012, 07:30 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryH View Post
I

The more I think about it, the more I want to add a Symba to my collection. I

[peer pressure] DO IT, DO IT, DO IT Woo Woo Woo Woo [/peer pressure]
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Old 10-12-2012, 09:35 AM   #38
chazbird
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Due to its transmission I'd think the Symba is as peppy, if not more, than a Zuma 125. It is probably considerably lighter, too. It also has a nice electric starter and a handy kick starter as well.
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:02 PM   #39
MODNROD
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I've been thinking about this same sort of thing for a while, not necessarily touring, but exactly what I NEED out of a bike, now that I'm definately past my 20s and street-racing (at least, that's what I've heard some 20-somethings do.........).
I always used to have some big-bore hotrod (like my Vmax I currently have), coz I'd ride the 200 miles to the drags, race all day and night against the long-bikes until one of them finally beat me, then the next day ride home on the hotrod again.
But to be honest where I live out here, I rarely do more than 75MPH any more at the most, usually 65-70, too many trucks/road trains/roos/sheep/John Deere harvesters/New Holland 4WD tractors, etc, just around the next blind bush-covered bend. I travel 60 miles to get to work (4on/4off) at 2am, home at 3pm 4 days later, and lately I've been sitting on 55MPH anyway (what is it with my cars and weeping head gaskets dammit?!?! ) for the trip.

I think travelling on low rolling hills sitting on 60-65MPH all day/night (to keep ahead of the road trains) is no issue for a 150cc mild hotrod or a 200cc stocker scoot. If you're just riding to the next town 20 miles away or travelling cross-country for days on end, what's the difference really.

I think that 2010 Sportscity 125 a mate has offered to me for $2G, then resurrect my old Kwaka Zed for the drags, and tell the lovely wife I need the family car (trailer for the Zed) a few times a year would be great.
Oh yeah, and roll out the old VW Beetle for those days when it's pisn down and I have to deal with crap weather and slippery red grease clay muck!

Do the road trip man, then write about it here, that way I can read about your exploits and get enthused!
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Old 10-13-2012, 12:28 PM   #40
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The definition of "small bike" has changed too. Back in '67, Honda called their 450 "A big bike with a big ride".
Now people call a 600, small

If a bike can get 55mph, its good enough for me
The definition of "road" has changed a bit, too. Used to be, all roads were two-lane roads. If you wanted to make time, you took the train.

Today, even lesser state highways are four-lane, limited-access in places. Often there's no option to either taking the Interstate or a road just like the Interstate, with drivers just as crazed and as fast.

I went from Madison, Wisconsin to Colorado's Four Corners area last month on my Burgman 650. Even though I had the power, I wanted to stay off the major expressways - the bike, even with a Givi windscreen, doesn't do tractor-trailer buffeting well.

Mostly I was able to. In places, though...there WERE no other roads; and it wasn't SAFE to keep the speeds down. And often times I wanted to...it was COLD up in them-there hills. Slower speeds meant more comfort and that I could keep the helmet's face-shield up, enjoy the mountain air.

I had some problems at the launch of the trip; I considered - seriously - taking the Big Ruckus instead. Glad I didn't - traffic would have had me in a constant spaz.
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Old 10-13-2012, 03:20 PM   #41
gatling
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I rode my California Scooter (it's a 150cc motorcycle) the length of the Baja peninsula and back (about 2200 miles). It was great. You can read that trip report here: http://www.motofoto.cc/california_sc...quer_baja!.htm

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Old 10-14-2012, 07:44 AM   #42
max57
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Spare

A scooter with a spare tire is the best place to start. I drive my Heinkel anywhere- I have been to Bar Harbor, Maine and NYC. My uncle, who bought it new in 1960, took it off the showroom floor and went from DC to LA by way of Mexico. You just have to keep the revs within safe limits. He made the trip in the late 50s on a Vespa. Said he liked the Heinkel better, larger and more comfortable, and got more respect. It has gravitas.The Stella is probably your best bet. A flat tire will hold you up for a half hour maybe.
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Old 10-14-2012, 07:57 AM   #43
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Looks like a fun trip. I've been thinking about doing a similar trip on my small motorcycle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gatling View Post
I rode my California Scooter (it's a 150cc motorcycle) the length of the Baja peninsula and back (about 2200 miles). It was great. You can read that trip report here: http://www.motofoto.cc/california_sc...quer_baja!.htm
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Old 10-14-2012, 08:41 AM   #44
thunderkat59
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A scooter with a spare tire is the best place to start. I drive my Heinkel anywhere- I have been to Bar Harbor, Maine and NYC. My uncle, who bought it new in 1960, took it off the showroom floor and went from DC to LA by way of Mexico. You just have to keep the revs within safe limits. He made the trip in the late 50s on a Vespa. Said he liked the Heinkel better, larger and more comfortable, and got more respect. It has gravitas.The Stella is probably your best bet. A flat tire will hold you up for a half hour maybe.
Can you post a pic of this Heinkel? I think these are the Holy Grail and Golden era of scoots. Maicos too . . .
If you ever want to sell the mighty Heinkel , PM me ?

The most gorgeous sheet metal work in the history of bikes

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Old 10-14-2012, 02:07 PM   #45
Krusty ...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryH
...I sure wish someone would make a scooter similar to the Zuma 125, only make it 150cc...


Taotao BWS150. It looks better in black .


If this came in a 250cc version, I think I'd have to buy it. I'm just too big (heavy) for a 150.
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