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Old 06-27-2014, 06:40 PM   #1
Trunk_Monkey OP
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Looking for first scooter

Hi, I'm new here as well as to scootering. I've ridden several scooters and caught the scooter bug, sooo, I've been shopping around. I've looked at the higher end scoots, Vespa, Genuine, Sym, Kymco and Lance. I've also been looking at the (shiver) Chinese brands as well. What I've found is that there is a company out of China called "Znen". Have any of y'all had any experience with Znen? I'm reading some good reviews about 'em, but I'd like to read some more from here. The model I'm looking at is the Motorino Supremo 150. I'm also looking into the Tomos "Nitro" 150. I realize the Tomos isn't made by Znen, but another Chinese based Sym company? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks
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Old 06-27-2014, 07:01 PM   #2
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Old 06-27-2014, 07:21 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunk_Monkey View Post
Hi, I'm new here as well as to scootering. I've ridden several scooters and caught the scooter bug, sooo, I've been shopping around. I've looked at the higher end scoots, Vespa, Genuine, Sym, Kymco and Lance. I've also been looking at the (shiver) Chinese brands as well. What I've found is that there is a company out of China called "Znen". Have any of y'all had any experience with Znen? I'm reading some good reviews about 'em, but I'd like to read some more from here. The model I'm looking at is the Motorino Supremo 150. I'm also looking into the Tomos "Nitro" 150. I realize the Tomos isn't made by Znen, but another Chinese based Sym company? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks
I have no experience with Znen, but MOSTLY what I have heard about all Chinese scooters is bad. There are those who have had good experiences with almost anything. I used to have a part time job assembling and setting up TANK brand Chinese scooters, and they were absolute junk. Most of them were broken in the crate. Fortunately they finally went under. I did have a Chinese motorcycle, made by American Lifan, and it blew the engine in less than 3,000 miles. Yet there is someone here with that same bike, with over 10 times that mileage.

Vespas are expensive, but they are high quality, and there is a certain "status" to riding one. As far as I know, they are the only scooter still being made that actually has a real heritage, dating back to early post WWII.

If you are more interested in actually riding than owning a status symbol (not that there is anything wrong with owning a Vespa) I would go for either a Japanese or Taiwanese scooter, used if necessary. Unlike Chinese stuff, they are proven reliable. You can get a Kymco Agility 125 for under $2K new. Yes they are made in China, but at a KYMCO factory in China, and their quality is top notch. The Tomos Nitro has been made by more than one company since it's been around. It used to be decent quality, but I don't know anymore. Things can change quickly in the low priced scooter market.
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Old 06-27-2014, 08:33 PM   #4
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Znen could be passable or a piece of shit, one never knows.

The model your looking at is a valley scooter model and they use a "better" Znen product. They are also good people. I'd say its about 1400.00 delivered, not all that cheap.

What I do know is this. Buy it from a drop shipper and you are on your own. Any warranty that may be offered over the Internet is not worth the paper it's not printed on.

Not working right out of the crate? To bad but no biggie you saved some bucks on the purchase. Now if you're the handy type no problems. If it starts up shut it down and change all the fuel lines and fluids before you do anything else. Then check every nut bolt and screw on the scooter. Repeat as needed.

If you are the hobbyist type a china scoot may not be a bad thing. If you want to ride it without having to do all the PDI , service and repairs not so much.

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Old 06-27-2014, 10:07 PM   #5
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If you want to do what the guy did with the china ruckus clone go for it. Go over every wiring connector etc. There no need for china stuff far to much new old stock out there. 50 cc Run 6 to 1300 used. A honda Ch80 Will run 400 to 80 bucks. No fanny but 45 MPH and in production for 27 years. For 125 cc you ve got the Zoma etc. You can find an old ct 90 or pasport for 5 to 1000 bucks. Great little scooters that can go off and on road. 90 million plus made of them. Old elite 125 etc. Spend some time going back over the battle scooter posting . There s so many used scooters out there with 1000 to 5000 miles on them . That near new. Yamaha BWS 50 or 125 are good bikes. Really it's start with what you stated propose ? I running around a some town on low speed streets? 50 cc to 80 Cc is fine. I m going to be running up and down hilly back roads ? 125 to 150 cc. Eg the honda pxc 125 which is around 1500 to 2300 new old stock. I m running around town but taking it out on the highway . 200cc to 250 Cc is fine but most 125 will do 55 mph to 60. .

Brands to Look at sym , honda , yamaha, Aprilia, Kymco . Kymco has some nice scooter like the bet and win etc. TRy this google search eg. 2010 scooter under images. https://www.google.com/search?pws=0&....0.JFwPE6Yk2pk


By searching by year you get an idea of what you might like . Best bet is a used scooter that fits you and fit the riding you want to do with it. hope this helps . ( yep I may have left out a few brands including vespa. )
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Old 06-28-2014, 05:25 AM   #6
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Okay y'all, thanks a lot for all the insight. It is greatly appreciated!
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Old 06-28-2014, 05:38 AM   #7
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Let us know what you end up getting.

You might want to consider a used low mile Taiwan scooter like a Kymco or a SYM if you can find either. They're reliable and certainly not expensive compared to Japanese/Italian brands. Also, if you can find a Piaggio Fly 150 they can often be had cheaply but are decent as well.
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Old 06-28-2014, 05:46 AM   #8
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Znen sounds terrible, as Chinese scooters have an awful rap, but times change and they rent Znen in Key West and they get well abused but they run endlessly. So reliability will be better than know nothing naysayers will tell you.
http://sunshinescootersinc.clickforw.../Scooters.aspx
I am no fan of Chinese knock offs, and I find their styling to be a bit outré, but as a first scooter it may do you very well. If you discover you really like riding a scooter and put miles on it you can think about spending more money for something that expresses your personality more closely.

It takes a lifetime to find the right ride, the perfect combination of form function style and ease of use. To expect to get it right first time is a bit much. Buy something comfortably within your price range and ride it all the time.

Good luck.
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:18 AM   #9
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I can tell you that my experience with a China Xingyang scooter was pretty bad. I find old or neglected scooters as a hobby, fix them up, clean them up, and then after a while sell them (mostly). It's not a profit making hobby, but I generally don't lose money and I enjoy the challenges.

I picked up a 250cc Xingyang which has a Yamaha knock off engine supposedly, and otherwise looks like a Honda Reflex. Working on it was fascinating, because the pieces that gave me trouble were a problem because they were very cheaply made. The wiring was very thin gauge and the insulation was soft and weak, it was strung with very little attention to avoiding sharp corners or staying away from hot exhaust lines. The snap connectors were easy to break. The carburetor casting was OK, but the tiny drilled passages did not quite line up correctly, so gaskets got in the way, and the small pieces were stamped out of metal so soft it bent when I was taking things apart.

My experience is with Honda stuff from the 1970's and 80's. The materials are very sturdy, the castings are nicely finished inside and out, and I have had no problems because of crappy metal stampings. There is an obvious difference.

So, I got rid of the Xingyang and that was a great day. No more! It's not that it was made in China, China can make good stuff and junk. Lots of the pieces in very high quality products are made there. It's just that their boom economy created a huge demand, and there's a ton of money to be made. In Southeast Asia the world got around on bicycles 15 years ago, and now it's scooters and small bikes, and some are good and some are crap. When the buyers learn the difference things will change fast.

So, be careful. A scooter that's sold for $1,000 new, here in the US, is likely to be worth no more than that. Imagine what it cost to make it, and then think about how many companies made a profit from that $1,000. It's just got to be very poor quality.
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Old 06-28-2014, 05:17 PM   #10
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I don't know about your financial situation, but Vespa has some attractive financing right now. Normally I am pretty negative about financing toys, but this might be worth your time.
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Old 06-29-2014, 10:27 PM   #11
fullmetalscooter
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I don't know about your financial situation, but Vespa has some attractive financing right now. Normally I am pretty negative about financing toys, but this might be worth your time.
Yep you can get something for 50 to 100 bucks a month .
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Old 06-29-2014, 11:08 PM   #12
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One of the biggest problems with Chinese scooters is the crap materials they are made out of. No amount of proper setup is going to make a difference when the engine, final drive, frame and bodywork are made of pot metal and super brittle plastic. I have seen the front outer drive face (pulley) of high quality scooters crack, and the splines strip out. I just watched a Youtube video where the front pulley splines on a Honda Helix stripped. And the problem is going to be much worse on a Chinese scooter. If you just plan to ride it around town, and have a way to get it home when it breaks down, it might not be such a bad deal. But if it causes you to be late to work or school or some important appointment, it could get expensive.

The problem I have with financing any motor vehicle, and especially bikes, even if the interest is not bad, is that they require full coverage insurance. Not a scooter, but I recently bought a new Royal Enfield motorcycle, and to avoid having to take money out of the bank to pay cash for it, I was going to take advantage of the finance companies low interest rates. I had in fact already financed it, and requested full coverage insurance from my agent, where I have several other bikes insured. To say I was shocked when I found out what it cost would be a gross understatement. It was going to be over $600 a year for full coverage on a $5000 bike, and that was with a $1000 deductible. Minimum liability only was $94 a year. You might be able to do better, this is a high crime area, and has a lot of sport bike riders, which means a lot more crashes. I canceled the full coverage, and paid the loan off.
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:32 PM   #13
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Good point about the insurance. Adding my 2006 Big Ruckus added $49 per year to my motorcycles policy. Adding the 2006 Schwinn 150 added over $600! Guess which one is uninsured?
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Old 07-02-2014, 05:17 PM   #14
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New Scooter questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunk_Monkey View Post
Hi, I'm new here as well as to scootering. I've ridden several scooters and caught the scooter bug, sooo, I've been shopping around. I've looked at the higher end scoots, Vespa, Genuine, Sym, Kymco and Lance. I've also been looking at the (shiver) Chinese brands as well. What I've found is that there is a company out of China called "Znen". Have any of y'all had any experience with Znen? I'm reading some good reviews about 'em, but I'd like to read some more from here. The model I'm looking at is the Motorino Supremo 150. I'm also looking into the Tomos "Nitro" 150. I realize the Tomos isn't made by Znen, but another Chinese based Sym company? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks
Depending on where you are located, you may have quite a few options. And what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for the next. Having said that, my suggestions are -

Forget Znens and Tomos - and try to find a good scooter you can AFFORD from a legitimate and reputable manufacturer. Vespa is the high-end - so if you are looking at Vespas, I can only assume that you've got a decent budget. Or maybe you are indulging in something many scooterists do - wishful thinking. Vespas are really nice - and they're also pricey.

If you can't afford Vespas - new or used - the Taiwanese scooter manufacturers - specifically SYM and Kymco - make great scooters. I owned a Kymco People - the 50cc model with larger motorcycle-sized tires, supposedly inspired by/copied from Aprilia's line of big-wheeled scoots, the Scarabeos - for several years, and it was one of the best scooters ever. Many SYM's are great. SYM also makes a cool Lambretta-inspired retro model, the 'Like', which is a great scooter.

Alternately, Aprilia Scarabeos - which have larger wheels - are often less expensive than Vespas - but are great scooters. The older models - including the semi legendary 150 - are superb. The newer Scarabeo 200 - introduced in the US in 2008 - was manufactured by Aprilia in China and in spite of some mixed reviews, is one of the nicest - and nicest riding - scooters I've ever ridden. In fact, I recently bought one on sale from a great dealer in Seattle, Moto International - so if you're anywhere near Seattle, I'd recommend talking to Dave at Moto International.

A final alternative is getting an older 1980's or early 90's Honda or Yamaha. Honda's Elite series of scooters - and Yamaha's competing Riva - ranged from small 50cc scoots to freeway-capable 150cc and up scooters - and if you can find one in good shape, they are incredibly fun to ride and often seem to last forever. I've owned and ridden several Honda Elites and have to say they are more than deserving of their good reputation/s among scooter fanatics.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

Miguel
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Old 07-02-2014, 05:27 PM   #15
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sym makes the fiddle, kymco makes the like both similar in looks


Quote:
Originally Posted by MiguelATF View Post
Depending on where you are located, you may have quite a few options. And what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for the next. Having said that, my suggestions are -

Forget Znens and Tomos - and try to find a good scooter you can AFFORD from a legitimate and reputable manufacturer. Vespa is the high-end - so if you are looking at Vespas, I can only assume that you've got a decent budget. Or maybe you are indulging in something many scooterists do - wishful thinking. Vespas are really nice - and they're also pricey.

If you can't afford Vespas - new or used - the Taiwanese scooter manufacturers - specifically SYM and Kymco - make great scooters. I owned a Kymco People - the 50cc model with larger motorcycle-sized tires, supposedly inspired by/copied from Aprilia's line of big-wheeled scoots, the Scarabeos - for several years, and it was one of the best scooters ever. Many SYM's are great. SYM also makes a cool Lambretta-inspired retro model, the 'Like', which is a great scooter.

Alternately, Aprilia Scarabeos - which have larger wheels - are often less expensive than Vespas - but are great scooters. The older models - including the semi legendary 150 - are superb. The newer Scarabeo 200 - introduced in the US in 2008 - was manufactured by Aprilia in China and in spite of some mixed reviews, is one of the nicest - and nicest riding - scooters I've ever ridden. In fact, I recently bought one on sale from a great dealer in Seattle, Moto International - so if you're anywhere near Seattle, I'd recommend talking to Dave at Moto International.

A final alternative is getting an older 1980's or early 90's Honda or Yamaha. Honda's Elite series of scooters - and Yamaha's competing Riva - ranged from small 50cc scoots to freeway-capable 150cc and up scooters - and if you can find one in good shape, they are incredibly fun to ride and often seem to last forever. I've owned and ridden several Honda Elites and have to say they are more than deserving of their good reputation/s among scooter fanatics.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

Miguel
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