|What is your Gas Mileage?|
Figuring gas mileage is not as easy as it may seem. As well as
a Vespa is made – sometimes your fuel gauge is only an indicator of
approximate fuel level. A more accurate procedure is to go to your favorite
gas station (one with a new, unbroken fuel filler head). Note your current
odometer reading (reading #1). And fill your tank (do not top off). When you
are very close to empty, return to the same gas station. Note your current
odometer reading (reading #2). Fill your tank (do not top off). And note the
amount of gas filled (reading #3).
Ok, you are now ready to calculate your gas mileage. The distance traveled
since your last fill up is calculated by reading #2 minus reading #1. Divide
your result by reading #3 and you’ll have an accurate gas mileage figure.
|Break in period and procedures|
If you have a new gas powered scooter then you must follow the
proper break in procedure if you want to best gas mileage and longest possible
life from your engine.
Check out this article.
|Have TopCase? Got handling issues?|
For those with an ET4 and either a topcase (or loaded rear
rack) you should increase your preload setting one click on the rear shock
(ET2 owners don't have adjustable preload). Some people say it's not
necessary. But, my experience says you should at least try it. It can make a
night n' day difference in highspeed handling.
There is a tool in your kit - a spanner. Use it to adjust the rear shock. The
owner's manual shows you how.
|Buy that Vespa bike cover!|
Take a look at these photos. They show the powerful effects of
the environment on your Vespa.
After just 6 months of outdoor storage of my bike (a bike that is rode daily
by the way) you can see the devastating effect of the sun, rain, wind, etc.
The second picture shows the sun bleached fabric of the cover. Imagine that
burden on your seat or plastic. These official Vespa covers are expensive at
$135.00 but worth every penny.
|Tips on buying Sunglasses when you wear
It seems simple enough. A pair of sunglasses to slip on when
you wear either a full face or open face helmet. I like my Oakley Fives and
A point to consider is the shape of the temple. A flat and flexible temple is
a best choice. Avoid glasses with rubber covers on the temples.
Oakley Fives (and Tens) are a dream. Because the temples are flat, and
flexible, they slip on easily.
Oakley Scar is quite painful to slip on while I am wearing a full face. A
little less with an open face. The temple is very stiff.
Oakley Wire is problematic as the rubber sleeves on the temples slip off due
to the lack of space between helmet and head.
|Tire pressure - Things you should know|
A recent post on
ScooterBBS prompted me to add this tip.
1. The right pressure: Tires are the only contact between your
vehicle and the road. Inflation pressure is an extremely important factor
affecting safety driving performances, mileage and fuel consumption. Both
under-inflation and over-inflation can negatively affect your tire performance
level: it is therefore important to always maintain the correct pressure on
Please note that 'suggested inflation pressure levels' do not exist. The
correct inflation pressure value is given by the vehicle manufacturer and can
be found in the vehicle log book. Inflation pressure checks should be made
only when tires are cold. tires are considered to be cold when they have not
been run for at least one hour or have only been run at low speed for not more
than two or three kilometers. Check cold tire pressure frequently (at least
every two weeks) and always before long journeys, not forgetting the spare
2. Why does my front tire "cup" or "scallop?": Ever notice that? It
is because your tire pressure is too low or less likely too high. If that happens - you should replace
that tire. When that cupping is severe it can cause havoc on turns with the potential to cause
3. When should you change your tire?: It depends. For some riders,
safety comes first. For some saving money comes first. So they will let the
tire wear to the very limit of safety. But, for most riders, safety comes
first. When you see the center of the tread worn down to "smooth" - you
change that tire. Even when a tire is not worn that much - the possibility of road
debris puncturing a smooth surface increases with every mile you ride.
|What to do when your tire goes flat . .
. on the Freeway!|
I guess it had to happen sometime. And it did with my ET4 on the 405 heading
South a couple of days ago. This is a first for me. . . having a flat
while riding on two wheels. I should have known something was wrong much
earlier. After work I did a ride up to the Rock Store and noticed a little
wavering on fast-hard turns. I thought it might be needing a preload
adjustment so I took it one notch up. It did seem better. Or did it?
So, evening comes around and I am on the 405 heading to the Marina. 65 mph, in
the right lane about to use the exit and the rear end starts to sway left to
right. I feather the throttle to see if it will decrease the sway and it only
gets worse. Damn, a flat rear tire. Now, I do not just shut the throttle off
completely. I calmly ease off of it and concentrate on keeping the bike
upright and moving forwards. Turn signal is on and my exit ramp is just ahead.
I am now going about 50 mph and gently slowing down. I can hear the tire
rolling on the rim and wiggling is due to the tire bead coming off the safety
ridges on the inside of the rim. Whew, I make it down to the end of the ramp
and look down - sure enough my tire is flatter than a pancake.
Luckily, the ET4 is light enough and the tire still on the rim so I can push
it the next quarter mile or so to my house. Had this been a blowout I may have
written this from a hospital bed - or worse. But, thanks to God, Pirelli tire
technology, and a really well made scooter, I can live to ride again.
|Oh, The Many Secrets We Keep. . . . |
Did you know that your ET series Vespa has a secret
compartment? Oh yes! You know that little knee pad on the upper right side of
the glovebox? Remove the phillips screw holding the pad in place. It is right
underneath the bottom edge of the pad. The pad will come off and you'll see
the compartment. Now, you can put goodies in there, replace the pad and simply
close the glovebox door (or put the screw back in place).
|Smoothing Bumpy Roadways|
This tip helps, in particular, the Vespa ET4. When riding over
a moderately bumpy road try to sit forward on the seat. I weigh about 150 lbs
and ride an ET4. On Venice Blvd. (on the Westside) there are a lot of patches on
the road from construction and repairs. I found that sitting on the forward
portion of the seat places you right in the middle of (what seems to be) the
pivot point of the bike. Sorry, my description is not technically accurate.
But, in any case, it works.
Another related tip has to do with "speed bumps." When approaching a bump
there's no need to slow down like a car (assuming it is clear and safe) simply
lift your butt off the seat! That's all it takes. Your legs act as springs and
your grip on the bars act as a pivot. Let the bike take the bump and you'll
just glide over it.
|Hmmm, What coffee thermos fits in my glove box???|
Yup. This is a 16oz cup o' java junkie delight. And the sucker fits in the
left side of your ET series glovebox! Yahoo!
|The truth about the right lane....|
The right lane, on a typical street where cars are either parked or driveways
exit, can be the most dangerous to the scooterist. Why? because you are in the
most vulnerable position relative to cars pulling out making either a "U" Turn
or into your space. Car drivers tend to pull out before looking back to see if
it is clear. And then, of course, it is too late.
If you have to be in the right lane, then keep an eye out for the loose canon.
It is best to stay near or in the middle lanes.
|Do you have a tip? Email it and see it here!|