Scoot ??'s

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by TinyBear, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. TinyBear

    TinyBear Been here awhile

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    Well looks as though their may be a couple scoots invading my garage soon as my mother (currently rides a cruiser) and my kid sister (does not yet ride) both want to get scooters. My mother will not be letting go of her cruiser but wants something easier and more convinient for her 6km (4miles) drive to work (all roads are 60km/hr (40mph) or less. My sister is looking for a scoot that she can ride back and forth to work but also join in the longer trips we go on as a family so this one needs to be highway comfy.

    I know diddly squat bout scooters myself but they both turn to me for advice as i am the Mechanic of the family and will be the one maintaining these invaders lol. So i figured who better to ask for advice on scoots then the scoot warriors down here.

    Had em do a lot of test sitting at the bike show last week and my mother liked both the Yamaha Vino 125 and the C3 as she is REALLY short 5.0" with VERY little in the way of inseam (she cant even flat foot her V-star). She is a bigger lady though at 200lbs will either of these thing be ok for the 6km jaunt to work for her. How much of a pita are they to maintain (i wrench for a living so come home time i rather be riding). Can a full face helmet fit under the seat ok on either

    My sister is substancially taller. And for her perspected use she obviously needs a bigger scoot. She originally wanted a small boar sport bike (ninja 500 or gs500) but she really hates shifting so i suggested looking at a few scooters and she really likes the idea. She loved the look of the Yamaha Tmax but is a bit worried about being on her toes as it sits kinda high. But she liked the honda silverwings ergos and could easily flat foot it. Is starting riding on a scooter gona be a problem and is a bigger scooter gona cause issue. She has ridden my mums bike around a bit in parking lots (she had her M1 for a bit) and did fine but never could get used to the clutch and shifting and that put her off for riding till now. She is a big girl though at 5' 10" and a good 250ish pounds.

    Also i guess i will be rideing both every once in a while as i gotta fix em. and i am a REALLY big guy at 6' 295lbs. I gona break anything on these things? any other big people riding scoots??? I secure enuff in my manhood to ride em but i just dont want to injure my man hood trying (damn those things are small) LOL.

    And lastly hows the maintence on scoots. I can fix pretty much anything on a bike car or truck so i sure i figure it out but id rather be riding then wrenching so what would i be looking at as far asservice and such. Valve adjusments hard? anything id need to keep up on the CVT's any stupidly difficult reg maintence (AKA like my v-star that originally requires the exhuast removal for an oil change i have since relocated the oil filter).

    Anyways thanx for the help in advance
    #1
  2. techguy

    techguy Scooter Trash

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    My Kymco People 250 hauls my similarly weighted butt up to highways speeds everyday I ride. I have ridden an average of 500 miles a month since I got my scoot 16 months ago ( I didn't ride so much last winter but I have this year, so the average is really higher when riding.)

    The scoot you list a pretty good scooters. The C3 is the Coleman cooler on wheels of a scooter and is good for low speed grocery getting and beer runs. The under seat areas may warm up, so bring ice.

    If you are looking ofr used scoots, I would stick with Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kymco. Sym can be added if you are buying new.

    My People 250 has the larger 16 inch wheels and is a about the same size as a Ninja 250, but it sits taller. I had a gal park next to me one night when I was taking a class at the JC and was stunned when I took my 3X armored riding coat out from under my seat and dumped in my school bags and a binder.

    check out www.JustGottaScoot.com for great suggestions and help on picking a scooter.
    #2
  3. Bar None

    Bar None Long timer

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    TinyBear,
    Good advice from techguy.
    Your mama ain't gonna be happy with a 50cc scooter for long after she gets use to twist and go and sells her cruiser.
    I'm been riding bikes for 50 years but got my first scooter just six months ago and now I'm wondering what took me so long.
    You better stay off the better performing ones or you will be a convert too.
    #3
  4. Photog

    Photog Charismatic Megafauna Administrator

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    Welcome, Tiny Bear...lots of good advice so far. :thumb

    I don't think it's a bad thing at all to start out on a scoot particularly if your family members are gravitating that way.

    It's easy to add in the shifting later. Conversely, it's fine to take a motorcycle course and learn how to shift--then get right on a scoot--because the basic rider skills are still essential.

    And some people just really prefer the scoots for the reason you describe--they can shift but it's not their thing so they avoid riding, but on a scoot they're eager to go. (my SO is like this)

    And last..as you'll hear from many...you'll probably end up enjoying the heck out of the scoot as well.

    Seems like a 250 might do the trick for you, given the idea of future trips together in a mixed group of motorcycles and scoots.

    However don't rule out the 125's, either.

    I love my 50 but it's for running around town and lightly traveled back roads.

    Maintenance varies--you'll get more specific input as you start narrowing down models, and people familiar with them can help out and/or point you to really good make/model specific sites. But nothing I've owned has been a problem child or needed anything weird.

    So far my CVT scoots have been easy to live with in terms of maintenance. I currently have a Piaggio MP3-250, Kymco Super9 and the 4-speed Genuine Stella (the Stella doesn't count as trouble-free since it's been modded and is my little beloved pet hellion)
    #4
  5. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    Its not so much the length of commute as type of road. The 50cc C3 is fine for roads up to 40mph for experienced riders (like your mother seems to be). Faster roads mean a bigger engine. The problem with the TMAX, Silverwing or other Maxiscoots is that they get just too big for easy rides around town. 125/150/200cc scooters seem to be big enough engine-wise to go most anywhere (think 65+mph), but aren't too big size-wise to lose their get up and go utility.

    You can add the Genuine Buddy to the list as well. Good quality.
    Finally, give Vespa a look. You'll pay a premium price for an Italian scooter, but the new Vespa's are reliable and have the original scooter cachet that's worth the cost to many owners. That may not be your family, but maybe it is. Nothing wrong with buying something iconic since its still reliable.

    Don't worry about big guys on scooters. I have 250+lb friends who commute 10 miles or so a day on a 50cc Honda Ruckus and a 50cc Yamaha Zuma. You'll have no problems if you get a 150cc or so.

    Go sit on a few. See what fits their legs. See which hold a helmet underneath.
    #5
  6. JEDI 2.0

    JEDI 2.0 Not From Star Wars

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    You know what. .?? If your sister likes the idea of a bike but not shifting, maybe keep your eyes peeled for an old Hondamatic!! I saw one for sale in the SF Bay Area awhile ago & it was fairly immaculate, I was like :evil hahah!!

    Scooterwise if she doesn't mind the semi laid-back ergonomics of a Honda Helix, parts are easy/cheap to get as are a few upgrades to make that sucker really rip! They're a dime a dozen & well-maintained it'll last a long time.

    For mom, because she's short the first thing that comes to mind is an older Yamaha Riva----they have a very low seat-height if memory serves me right, and they are available as a 125, 180 or a 200. Parts may be a little harder to find & will surely cost a little more. Hell, why doesn't she just get a Rebel 250, those are probably low enough, too! :D


    Alot of you guys really know your stuff so there's plenty of sound advice here. ..
    #6
  7. Bugtussle

    Bugtussle Been here awhile

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    I agree on the People 250. Having owned one and riding other 400 and 500cc scooters. The 250 is closer to the sweet spot in the power to weight ratio if you can be happy cruising in the 65-70 mph range. The larger ones will go faster top end but some of the 250's can get up to freeway speeds quicker than the larger scoots.
    #7
  8. brockster

    brockster Despair & Repair Garage

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    Suzuki made a GS450 Suzukimatic for a couple years, 1982-3. I'd never heard of that until I bought mine. Two-speed automatic with a neutral gear.

    Old Honda Elite 150s are pretty durable. I've beaten mine pretty well.
    #8
  9. JEDI 2.0

    JEDI 2.0 Not From Star Wars

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    Suzuki made some auto-bikes too? I'll have to check em out, are they as well-styled as the Hondas?

    I own a Honda Elite 150, it's beat all to hell but runs like a champ! I'd recommend an Elite 250 for the sister but for 5-foot-nothin' Mom even the Elite 150 seat is a bit high. Check out some older-model Riva's for mom.
    #9
  10. rtking

    rtking Been here awhile

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    The Vino 125 is an easy to ride bike, but don't expect better than 55 - 60 mph (65 mph with a windshield if you're light and the stars are aligned.) Most get to 50 - 55 mph top end. If your mother doesn't need to access a highway or freeway during that 6 km ride, she'll be fine. While the Vino 125 can do longer distances, I think your mother will find that the lack of highway power is going to restrict where she goes.

    Probably a good blend of city and highway riding, as people here have suggested, is a 250 cc scoot. Fuel injection is always nice as messing with carburetor jets gets old after a while (if you plan to upgrade/modify.)
    #10
  11. TinyBear

    TinyBear Been here awhile

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    Cool their seems to be enuff of the Vinos around here cheap that it might be a good option for my mum. Never seen any rivas here though and their are no genuins sold here or at least anywere close. Her commute is all city and speed limits are at the highest 60km/hr AKA 40mph so that actually leaves her some top end if needed. She will never need it for freeway stuff she is keeping her V-Star 650cc for that and the longer trips. One of the reasons she wants this scoot is i doing a very thurough refresh on her bike this winter (new rear hub refresh, Clutch, body and paint, valve adj, carb syn, and some performance goodies for a bit of a boost in power) and she does not want to keep abusing it on the short jaunt were the bike dont even get warmed up.

    AS for my sister she HATES the look of the old hondas LOL. so i think for her its gona be just a matter of going to a few shops and just seeing what she likes best. She liked the yamaha majesty too but i figured at 400cc it was not gona handle any freeway work very well let alone with any luggage on board for a longer trip. as a family we usually do on long trip a year togeather 2000kms or so in a week. Regardless what she picks she will looking at newer used models.

    Dealers around here are Honda, Vespa, Yamaha, and Suzuki. I personally really like our local yamaha dealer (Awsome people to deal with were i got my V-Star 1100) and hate the suzuki guys(used to deal with em when i had my V-Strom never got anything right when ordering from em. I never been in the honda and vespa dealer though. The vespa place also deals in aprilla and MotoGuzzi.

    As for me i stick with my bike thanx. IM sure scoots are fun but i like my torque'y V-Twins and the whole mechanical charecter of the bike. Pluse at my size its what i am more comfy riding. I never could get comfy on long huals with my old V-Strom but my cruiser with the mustang sear is two wheeled bliss.
    #11
  12. tastroman

    tastroman Long timer

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    Another vote for 250's.
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  13. wanna bECO

    wanna bECO Been here awhile

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    :ear
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  14. brockster

    brockster Despair & Repair Garage

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    #14
  15. mboni

    mboni Been here awhile

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    I think the advice based on road speed is best.

    I've had the Honda 250 Reflex, and it was a great city bike. I moved up to the Silverwing because I wanted to do some trips that included longer highway runs. But the Silverwing is overkill for city use, at least compared to the Reflex.

    I think the trick is to find the fastest road you're likely to travel on, take it's speed limit and add about 15mph, and get the smallest bike that can handle that. So since my daily commute includes a 45mph road, my ideal scooter tops out at 60. A 250 is more than enough, but a 150 might be a little small. On the other hand, if you need to hit the interstate with a 70mph limit, a 400cc is probably about the right size.
    #15
  16. Bar None

    Bar None Long timer

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    My next scooter is going to be atleast a 400cc one to meet my needs.
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  17. Bugtussle

    Bugtussle Been here awhile

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    I read the SYM is coming out with a 400cc version of the current Citycom for 2010. Might be one to keep an eye on.
    #17
  18. rtking

    rtking Been here awhile

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    Actually TinyBear, the Majesty does just fine on the freeway and, as I've read on another forum, can just touch 100 mph. There's a forum for Majestys and the members there are pretty helpful. Just do a search for Majesty USA and you should find it. Lots of guys there tour on their Majestys.
    #18