long trips on small scooters

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by JerryH, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. vt1099ace

    vt1099ace Been here awhile

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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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  2. xbeemer

    xbeemer n00b

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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.
    #62
  3. chazbird

    chazbird Long timer

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    It's legal to ride on a highway or freeway with a bike with less than 150cc or whatever hp rule they have in CA when their are no practical alternatives. IE:; for one The Golden Gate Bridge. I used to ride my Honda S90 on the bridge all the time to get to Marin. I had to get off at the first exit and take alternative roads, which, as we all know, are generally more fun/interesting. To "legally ride" sans freeway & freeway bridges from SF to Sausalito would actually take about 250 miles instead of the 5 miles taking the bridge. So no one ever bothered me whether it had the hp or displacement. I am fairly sure no one cares about this on the Bay Bridge either, as I've seen some pretty small scooters on that bridge as well.
    #63
  4. Jurgen

    Jurgen Trolljegeren Super Moderator

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    From my weak googling I've found California posts a "no scooters less than 150cc" rule. Also saw mention that Arizona used to have signs saying "no less than 175cc." But haven't scene any mentions for other states. To my knowledge NM doesn't have anything other than not allowing motorized bicycles which would encompass 50cc scoots here.

    Any other states with a 150cc rule that people know about? :ear
    #64
  5. Jurgen

    Jurgen Trolljegeren Super Moderator

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    Here is a thread on Modern Vespa that list some states regs.

    LINK

    I was reading St. Joseph in Missouri's PD interpretation, and wondered if one could play both sides against the middle? :evil
    LINK
    So, if you had a licensed 50cc Scooter capable of 35mph on level ground would it be legal to run on the Interstate in Missouri? :wink:


    PS- what is interesting is assuming they are correct, multiple surface streets are off limits as they are part of the Interstate Highway System.
    #65
  6. Jurgen

    Jurgen Trolljegeren Super Moderator

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    PS-- apologies for the mild thread hi-jack, it is just I have a 50cc Scooter fantasy (very long trip) and the route requires some Interstate travel. Due to this, I began thinking a Yamaha Zuma 125... In fantasy mode now, but every trip has to start somewhere.
    #66
  7. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    I notice that there is still no information on most of those states. AZ lists the freeways where bicycles may be ridden on the shoulder, even lists the mileposts. Between the mileposts where they are prohibited there are reasonable alternative routes. I have spent hours searching the rules and regulations and and the only thing I can find is motorized cycles are prohibited on freeways, and they seem to be defined as having less than 5 hp. The Zuma 125 has over 8 hp. This information is very vague however, and there are numerous other laws that also cover the same thing. For example, even if your vehicle meets their technical requirement, you could still be cited for impeding the flow of traffic. Then there is the "slow moving vehicle" law, which applies everywhere except freeways, allowing vehicles to operate at very slow speeds on roads with up to 65 mph speed limits. The vehicle must be equipped with flashing amber lights and a slow moving vehicle reflective red triangle. Then there is yet another law that allows a slow moving vehicle on all non freeway roads without the lights and triangle, which would apply to someone towing a trailer in the mountains or under other circumstances where they cannot keep up with traffic. That law requires the vehicle to pull over if there are 5 other vehicles behind them, and let them pass. Seems like for every traffic law AZ has, there are multiple exceptions.
    #67
  8. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    As someone pointed out, legal isn't necessarily smart.

    If I were cross-country-ing with a scoot...I'd want at least speed of 55. Displacement is secondary since there's such a wide disparity...but there is a REAL danger of getting struck from behind.
    #68
  9. JerseyBiker

    JerseyBiker Living the life!

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    I rode my Bajaj 150 on a local highway one time and was almost killed.

    The real danger is if a car is tailgating you, it blocks the car behind it from seeing you. When the tailgater decides he has "had enough" and races around you to pass, the next car behind him might be coming at 65+mph while you are doing 55.

    That happened a couple of times to me within about 2 miles between exits and I couldn't get off fast enough. Never again.

    If I were ever to do a cross country trip on a small scoot, I would want at least a 250cc "in case" I had to get on a highway. One can always ride a 250cc slowly on backroads (where available) and enjoy the sights.
    #69
  10. Motovista

    Motovista Parts is Parts

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  11. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    I read a ride report where a couple rode across the U.S. on Symbas, before having them shipped to Africa, where they continued their journey. I can't find it now. I never did get the route they took.

    Pedestrians, motor driven cycles, and sometimes bicycles are what are prohibited on AZ freeways. Check out their definition of a motor driven cycle, about halfway down the page.

    http://www.azdot.gov/mvd/faqs/scripts/FAQsResponse.asp?Category=0&Keyword=emissions
    #71
  12. redhandmoto

    redhandmoto Been here awhile

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  13. vt1099ace

    vt1099ace Been here awhile

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    Instead of researching scooter touring, try bicycle touring... they cross the country all the time and know all the routes. Even a lot of the gear (ultra lite, etc ) is crossover.
    Any search engine worth a damns mapping has the options to avoid freeways or bicycle mode.
    Creative thinking outside the box.
    #73
  14. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    I did try the bicycle route thing. And maps and routes for bicyclists certainly do exist, but don't do me much good where I'm at. In many western states, it is legal to ride a pedal powered bicycle on interstate shoulders for hundreds of miles at the time, but motor driven cycles are prohibited. Most bicycle routes include large sections of freeways.

    But many people have crossed the country on small scooters as well. There is/was an organization called Wandering Wheels, which had been around for a long time. They were a large group pf people who rode bicycles cross country. But eventually they got to old to ride bicycles that far, and switched to 50cc Kymco scooters. I tried to get information from them with no success.

    As far as Wan's journey, he apparently did a lot of illegal riding, and got lucky. It seems he eventually did get stopped while riding down the median on I-5 in CA.

    There are many old non freeway routes across the U.S., like Route 66. But sections of these routes are missing, and they detour onto and run along with freeways for many miles. I took route 70 from Globe, AZ to Lordsburg, NM, which is where it came to a temporary end, and connected onto I-10 east. It was a nice trip, through several old towns from the '30s and '40s, but didn't get me very far.
    #74
  15. vt1099ace

    vt1099ace Been here awhile

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    I don't know, google maps (bicycle) gave me three routes from my home city to Yosemite national park (220, 222 and 223 miles)...seems do-able, that's what, at least a long day's ride. Then re-google from Yosemite to next leg on a trip...and so on and on....run a cross country in "stages".
    #75
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  16. Underboning

    Underboning Been here awhile

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    Google Maps will route you just about anywhere, avoiding any interstate highways. Go to Google Maps, click "Get Directions", put in your starting point and destination, click "Show Options" (just below where you type your destination), check the "Avoid Highways" box and then click "Get Directions". If you can get there without taking an Interstate Highway, our overlords in Mountain View will lead the way!

    For example, here is how to get from Chandler, AZ to Key West, FL without taking an Interstate. http://goo.gl/maps/T0Hry

    This is how we made it from Portland, OR to Sneads Ferry, NC, to Kinsman, OH, and finally to Toronto all without taking any interstate highways. It's really easy. It just usually adds a few miles. :lol3

    Bike routes may or may not work. When we looked at a few, they involved things like going the wrong way down one-way streets and riding on dedicated bike paths. Obviously a no-go on our Symbas.

    Routing is easy, so get out there and ride!!
    #76
  17. vt1099ace

    vt1099ace Been here awhile

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    Example: I can't go to Los Vegas directly from my home city, but I can go to yosimite, yosimite to san diego, san diego to vegas...see, "stages"
    #77
  18. Dirt Road Cowboy

    Dirt Road Cowboy Sometimes I'm A Jerk

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    I'd listen to him...he takes good cheesecake pictures! :evil



    :lol3
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  19. cdwise

    cdwise Long timer

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    I've ridden from San Diego to Houston and the only time I was on the freeway was when I detoured up to Flagstaff to have lunch with a friend and decided to make up some time by riding 120 miles or so east on I-40. I didn't have to take I-40 and hadn't originally planned to do so but since I decided to go through Sedona and take the canyon up to Flagstaff it seemed like a good idea to make up a little of the lost time. I've ridden from Breckenridge, CO to Houston, TX without setting even a tire on any interstate. From Houston to Washington DC and back without the need for interstate travel. I did occasionally jump on one when I needed to make time such as after a 2 hour delay due to a logging truck/minivan accident closed US 50 in West Virginia but I didn't have to do so. Found lots of really pretty state roads not to mention Natchez Trace and Blue Ridge Parkway. Another trip was Breckenridge to Lake Geneva, WI, around the southern part of Lake Michigan taking the Lake Express Ferry back to WI. That trip saw Rocky Mountain National Park, Crazy Horse Monument, Mt. Rushmore, Sturgis, Badlands, Walls Drug, Theodore Roosevelt National Park, Yellowstone and Grand Tetons. No interstate required though I'll admit that parts of the Dakotas, Nebraska and Iowa were, well pretty boring but easily doable on a 125-150cc scoot. Though you might want to carry some spare gas. Cross Nevada on US 50 or 6 and you better carry a couple of gallons of spare gas - yeah, did that too from San Luis Obispo through Monterey over through Yosemite. Crossing Nevada on a small scoot is quite possible but there are a few hundred miles of the same type view without any place to stop for food or gas unless you brought it with you then it would be on the side of the road somewhere. There are a few abandoned business/ghost towns with places you can safely get off the road for a break with those consumables you carry. Heck, most of the time you could stop in the middle of the road and have your snack/add gas without anyone appearing before you are finished.

    I use Google Maps - avoid highways option to set my basic routes but I'm usually flexible enough that I'll make changes on the fly as appropriate. When time is no issue I've often just set a general direction route on state highways and adjusted as necessary along the way.
    #79
  20. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    That looks like a good one. Might give it a try. (when it is cooler). I have found ways to get to a number of places in AZ by going the long way around, sometimes almost doubling the mileage. (not a problem, it's supposed to be a trip) but some of them still put you on the freeway for a short distance. For example, I couldn't find a way from Chandler to Yuma without getting on the freeway for 11 miles east of Quartzite. But I think my Zuma 125 may be freeway legal in AZ. It has more than 5 hp.
    #80