Scooter under 3k?

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by Dracothius, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Dracothius

    Dracothius Berserker

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    I've recently had my friend approach me and tell me that he wants to ride offroad/mx. So I'm buying a ktm 300(gave me an excuse) and spending most of my disposable income on that. I however, would enjoy being able to still ride on the road and am thinking a scooter would be perfect for this. I'm hoping to not have to drive further then 20 miles to work/school.(moving in a few months for school). I've only been breifly paying attention to the scooter market and hoping I'm not missing anything. I like the madass but, want to make sure I'm not missing anything.This is basically would I would like to have in a scooter:
    1. lightweight
    2. not too scootery in appearance ( a little cool/showy would be nice. not a big deal though)
    3. Kickstarter (saw on the madass, thought it's nice. I find it useful on dirtbikes so why not. again not a big deal)
    4. High top speed (while i'm only driving this in low speed enviroments, it'd be cool to be able to drive an hour or two away. maybe a comfortable 60)
    5. customization (the madass had a ton. I like the thought of really modding up a scoot but would worry about killing mileage)
    6. offroad "capable" (obviously not single tracking it, I'd have the ktm for that but I would like to be able to venture forth)
    7. under 3k price ( this is the one I can't budge on. 3k might even be pushing it.)
    #1
  2. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    2, 5, and 6 present a special challenge taken with some of the others. "off road?" idk get some knobby tires or something :deal

    Kymco Super 8 150 will get to a comfortable 60-65mph on the flats and its not too "scootery" (lol) in appearance. $2400 and tunable / customizable

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/yNhPHPe5ZCY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>



    Piaggio Typhoon 125. around $2800

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uiSeIS5WKfk" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>


    Sym HD 200 is MY choice for the task at hand and well under 3K slightly used or even new "leftover" stock. may bot be for you, however

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/JOK6lEVKpYE" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>

    and the Kymco Like 200i but it is very "scootery!" $2600 though and up to the task

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/k9cGVT9kF5o" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="420"></iframe>
    #2
  3. Dracothius

    Dracothius Berserker

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    The offroad thing is actualy not a big deal. Like you said I can just throw "aggressive" tires on it. I just dont want a boring look. I actually like kymco like 200i style. I really like the vespa gtv 300. The numerous racks and style it breathes is great. It's also 7k. The other ones metnioned are good looking too. Kind of that sport scooter look. Nothing too bulky in appearance. Thanks for the suggestions.
    #3
  4. milwaukeemadass

    milwaukeemadass Web Geek

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    The Madass can handle off-road with some mods. It's been done before.
    #4
  5. nakedwaterskier

    nakedwaterskier Been here awhile

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    Just finished putting a 2002 LML 5 port 12V CDI into my 1962 Vespa VNB3T 2port 6V points.

    Rejetted and put on an expansion chamber.

    It flies now and gets 60 to 80 mpg

    TOO KEWL FOR SCHOOL
    #5
  6. tortoise2

    tortoise2 Been here awhile

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    Search Craigslist for 250cc (or larger) scooters.
    #6
  7. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    There's nothing out there that'll meet your requirements.

    The closest is the Honda Big Ruckus...macho and utilitarian, but out of production. Top speed, over 75. You'll pay about $3500-$4000 - USED.

    The Helix, which has much the same chassis and riding position, can be had used for $2000 or so...but no biggie tires or macho appearance.

    Or, there's Big Ruckus clones - the Rowdy 150 by Znen. Same chassis but an air-cooled 150 gy6, not a water-cooled Honda 250. Tires not as big, but alloy rims - and you can put the knobby tires on. Disc brakes all around, and a $1500 price tag. NEW.

    Top speed about 52. That's pushing it.

    You can try buying a used/burned-out Rowdy 150 (been around five years or so) and mounting a bigger engine/swing-arm on it; or hopping up the gy6. That's where you can put your leftover $1500.
    #7
  8. Pimpwerx

    Pimpwerx Adventurer

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    Do you know how much crossover there is between the Big Ruckus and the Rowdy? My Rowdy will be delivered tomorrow morning. I already want to swap over to the Big Ruck's dual headlights (rewiring the bike with new stator, of course) and I've wondered if the BR's engine fits as well. PEACE.
    #8
  9. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    I honestly don't - not yet. I've never had a chance to go over a BR.

    I know the rims are different, the tires more narrow on the clone. The clone has discs on both axles - and good brakes FWIW. The wiring is certainly completely different; with the clone having an electronic speedometer and other geegaws.

    I can't find where the radiator would have gone on the BR; but I believe it's where the gas tank is on the clone. Once that's worked out in my mind, I'll have an idea how to jam a junk water-cooled engine and swingarm into that Rowdy.

    And...FWIW...I kinda like that square headlight. And it's theft deterrence...a BR goes for top dollar; but it seems the clones are no more marketable than any other Chinese scoot. IF I did get a BR, I think I'd put the clone headlight on it, just to keep thieves at bay.
    #9
  10. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    The off road capable narrows your choices down to almost nothing. If it weren't for that, I would recommend the Piaggio Typhoon, or the Kymco Agility 125. The Kymco will actually get you OTD for under $3K, most of those others are going to be well over $3K by the time the dealer gets through piling on the fees. Dealers here in the Phoenix area actually charge $300 just for doing the PAPERWORK necessary to sell it to you. Add in freight, setup, sales tax, title and registration, and a $3K scooter is going out the door for around $4K.



    Oh yeah, the Madass. I've never ridden one, but have sat on one, and it was extremely uncomfortable for me. Take a good look at what passes for a seat. Also, check out the build quality. While it says "SACHS" on it, that is just a name. It used to be a German brand, and very high quality. Now the brand is owned by a Chinese company, and the bike is made in China. It has had a number of U.S. importers, first Tomberlin, then Carter Bros. and now someone else. The engine is a Honda clone, and Honda parts fit it, but it does not have Honda quality.
    #10
  11. bandito2

    bandito2 Been here awhile

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    IMO and many others I'm sure, most ANYTHING China puts out is crap. Far too often stolen, pirated designs at that besides. A big problem with all of that is that the naive, gullible, uninformed masses that think because they look the same, also think that they ARE the same only less expensive, when in fact they are NOT!!. Their similarity ends rather abruptly at outward appearances. Nothing discourages like being burned and let down by a cheap knockoff. Best value for the money has almost always been with quality products of reliable build and reputation. It is so true.... you get what you pay for.

    And for my money, I'd go with just about any of the more common Japanese makers. Honda being my favorite. Good value can be found in used bikes by these manufacturers as well. Depending on availability and market demand, a good, used Honda Reflex scooter for example, can be had for under $3000; usually in the neighborhood of $2500. 250cc, Fuel economy in the mid 60's to mid 70's, with a top speed over 70MPH, agile, easy to maintain and not bad looking IMO. It's a pretty good scooter that is also capable of touring. (maybe marginally in some opinions, but I have gone pretty long and far with mine. And pulled a single wheel trailer behind it while doing that!!!)

    Anyway, just my 2 cents and sorry for starting to sound like a Honda sales ad, but you know how passionate people can get about their bikes.
    #11
  12. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    Glad you put that qualifier in there. As it happens, I was chasing around my neck of the woods today on business, more or less - on the Xingyue Son-of-VOG. Broke the thousand-mile mark with nary a problem - and gas mileage in the high 70s.

    Are Chinese scooters of lower quality than Japanese or even Taiwanese? Absolutely. They're made to a price and are copies of existing models.

    Are they ripoffs? Some are or have been. Some have gotten better. The VOG XY260t-4 was one of the worst offenders - but while it took down Tank and other fly-by-night retailers, Xingyue stuck with it and improved it. It's three-fifths a Burgman; at two-fifths the cost.

    Honda the best? Sure. What're they offering? Not much. Used Honda? Again, if you ca find one, great. But it would take a lot of extenuating circumstances for me to pay a NEW price for fifteen-year-old equipment - even if purportedly low-mileage.
    #12
  13. bandito2

    bandito2 Been here awhile

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    Sure, but do let us know how it really fared after it hits the 10,000 mile mark (not kilometers) if it is so fortunate to have made it that far anyway. That is not an unusual nor unreasonable expectation for scooters to reach or exceed.

    The qualifier is there because I have no problem with a person holding an opposing view being vindicated by an outcome in their favor. Good for them if it does, but I do have my doubts. just sayin.
    #13
  14. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    My '08 Vino 125 already has 12,000+ miles on it, and still runs like new. I'm expecting to easily pass 50,000 miles. I put 42,000 miles on a Kawasaki 125 with no problems, it would have probably gone twice that far had I not sold it. That kind of thing will not happen on a Chinese bike.
    #14
  15. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    Well, since I've already avoided most of the alleged horrors of the Chinese Scoot Experience - non-starts, dead gauges, engine quitting or seizing up with ten miles on it - I'm halfway home.

    Since I have two China rides, and neither has shown any tendency towards such problems - the problems I HAVE are, inaccurate speedos (nope, not in kilos. 100 kph is 62 mph. My speedos are about ten off at fifty; reading of 60 is 50.) one set of brakes that take high effort to stop, and one defective-from-new battery.

    Those aren't acceptable on an $8000 Honda. On a $1500 Znen, they can be overlooked.

    Now, one swallow does not make a summer. But, realistically, what do I have to compare to? ANYONE can get on the Web and say ANYTHING. My experience with the China goods has been, a reminder of lower quality, but not a ripoff and not a horror. Just lowered expectations.

    Two tries, with two purchases, and both came up acceptable. And I haven't yet met the Chinese-bike owner who is always broken down or stuck. Only Web reports; often reading like tantrums.
    #15
  16. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    China scoots is like a mixed bag. It truly is.

    Some of y'all will have grate experances. Its like playing russian roulette with scooters, or like a bag full of candy, some be poisen some is good.

    You could order one and get a reasonable quality scooter that might go for 10s of thousands of miles have little or no problems. Or, get a cheap peace of shit that will sieze up, require more TLC than a panhead set in a backyard for 30 years with a siezed motor.

    Its cause they ain't got no quality control. Some will pay a little attention and build a decent scooter for the money, others could care less with the policy ["no worry, dumb American buy anyway!"].

    But, the Japanese, like Honda. They's gonna build a high quality scoot. And they don't let a crappy one roll off the assembly. Once in a while it happens. Thats whats called a Lemon, just like in cars.

    I've had many Honda motorcycles. Other than my 1st bike was chinese, I's had Hondas every bike ever since. Many was project bikes. The old ones will require a little TLC at 1st, but once thats done they'll go forever with care. Lets see how a China Scoot is in 30+ years with dozens of miles that set in a backyard without a tarp!:deal

    But, you see, trouble is, many many china scoots will be lemons cause quality control issues. Y'all ever seen how some of them factories weld? Its scary.


    What continues to amaze me most though, is how they often really don't try. For a while at 1st the Japanese bikes and products was crap. But, they just didn't know no better. They lerned, and lerned about quality control. And today is some of the bestest builders. Like they basically build Harleys, that will go longer with less maintainence. Harleys is good but its time to go to water cooled. To be honest, the Honda Shadows and such are almost better bikes than H-Ds. They'll go way longer before a rebuild, sound just as good, etc. The only thing they lack is the character. Thats what I love about H-D. They have a certain feel and character to em they won't never get. Although the Road Star 1600 comes purdy close!

    But thats the main issues I think with chinese. They has gotten better. But not there yet. Some of the higher end manufactorers is good. But then again they's just about as expansive.
    #16
  17. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    You need to put a little "quality control" into your posting...starting with "lerning" how to spell. Your education is "expansive" but it didn't take, it appears.

    Anyway...to the subject: Chinese stuff is of secondary quality. Used to be it was of completely-unacceptable quality.

    They are learning. Remember, there's no such thing as a "market" in their home of operations - the government decides what's to be produced and who can make it and who can buy it. Anyone who complains about it is taken out of sight and shot in the head.

    So...having to compete is a whole new experience. To understand what the Chinese are going through, I suggest you read http://www.amazon.com/The-Yugo-Rise-Worst-History/dp/0809098911 - Jason Vuic's book on the Yugo experience - to grasp the utter confusion the free market can be to a socialist manufacturing commissar.

    The Chinese bought the Japanese companies' obsoleted designs and tooling. They thought that was the whole of the puzzle. Just as the Yugo people thought buying the Fiat designs, and then the bankrupt Yugo America distribution company, was the whole of what THEY needed to succeed.

    Both were wrong. The Japanese were fortunate in that they got an early start on their success with an American statistician, W. Edwards Demming. It was HIS theory, "Continuous Quality Improvement" tied to measurable statistical parameters, that turned Japan from a backwards manufacturer of trinkets to the leader in automotive design and manufacture.

    China doesn't have anyone like Demming to guide them along. Nor are the Japanese gonna help. They're just muddling through, the Chinese novices.

    They are making progress. How much progress, will be interesting to see as time goes by.
    #17
  18. nakedwaterskier

    nakedwaterskier Been here awhile

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    Actually many Taiwanese own or run factories in Mainland China. Foxconn/Apple ring a bell? And obviously good quality control.
    #18
  19. bbishoppcm

    bbishoppcm It ain't a moped.

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    Just bought that book, I've heard of it, and your post made me finally break down and spend the $6 on it.
    #19
  20. bbishoppcm

    bbishoppcm It ain't a moped.

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    And quit raggin' on Bitchin', I understood exactly what he was saying. My father has terrible grammar, can't spell worth a damn, and cusses frequently; however, he's one of the smartest men I know. Give him a problem, and he'll find a solution; he can fix or build practically anything. My father taught me everything I know regarding electrical and mechanical repairs, just don't ask him to write an essay about it. Thankfully, I learned to read and write from my mother (I was one of the lucky few of my generation to have both parents growing up).
    #20