Many moons ago I had a catastrophic financial failure and had to sell everything I owned. I had been living in a forest building custom Toyota Corollas, all assembled from other peoples refuse. Suddenly I returned home to find I was forced to move into the City, all while shedding my precious Corolla stash. Landing on a couch I found a job at a local BMW dealership on the other side of town. After a few weeks of some big long walks, another local Corolla lover told me there might be a scooter I could have. Hosting a long term growth of weeds, lost in the brush behind his barn was a ’94 Yamaha Razz. A red headed step child, ex-rental scooter, exhumed from it’s grave, polished like a genie, with all 3 wishes spent wisely on asking it to run.
Barely alive, this little scooter huffed and puffed for nearly 6 months with a bicycle helmet and homemade license plates back and forth to work until I could afford insurance and a legal helmet.
This lovely little scoot began to empower my life again and mobilized me in such a fun way that heading to and from work was a relief in itself from the work I was doing. Some may have a cold beer at the end of the day, but just jumping on the scoot after a long day of polishing luxury cars was a freeing contrast to relieve stress.
This was my first scoot! It got me everywhere at a brisk 35km/h and I had no idea that was slow compared to other scooters. lol Eventually my friends nicked named it ‘Scooty Puff JR’. Funny enough this nickname would follow true to it’s Futurama reference when one dark evening bombing down hill the motor exploded. The catastrophic event was so big it lit up the street in a ball of light. Scooty Puff JR was dead.
I left the country for a bit and upon returning to Canada a year or so later I was chatting up a lovely young lady on a local dating site. She too had an appreciation for scoots. When I shared my pictures and story with her about how much I enjoyed my first SH50 Razz, she was elated to suggest her friend had one sitting unloved in his stash of broken scoots.
Nearly identical, this slightly older Razz was yet again a free rescue! “It’s banging and I’m not sure what it is”. I hauled it home, spewing fuel into the interior of my Supra. Some rubbing and loving resulted in it firing up, the bang the previous owner mentioned, was obvious! After a bit of fiddling, I found it was a broken clutch spring.
Scooty Puff Jr the Second, rode great, and this one was much faster!!!! Either my previous one was too worn to go fast, or someone had fiddled with this one, as it managed a good 60km/h on flat ground and 80km/h on downhills. Such a crazy feeling or freedom and speed. I love riding scooters as I feel like I’m breaking the law even though I’m not.
During the construction of a race car, I was building out of a junk car pulled from a swamp, I was having to commute an hour out of the city to a small forest property to wrench. Wrapped in snow gear, our winters in Victoria are luckily much milder than the rest of Canada, with nearly no snow on the southern tip of the island. These hour long rides, though possible, were still cold!!!!
Riding home one night really late I was cookin’ on a long, slight downhill at 75km/h when one of the clutch springs let go, and the transmission housing exploded! Oil everywhere. My poor little scooty puff!!!!! Soon after it was surgery time; where as much as we could cobble together was welded back together. The inner-raw cast aluminum housing did not weld well to say the least. Ever since, it’s leaked oil.
As summer rolled around Scooty Puff Jr The Second, was still running decently, though the top speed seemed to drop down to 50km/h on flats ever since the transmission housing explosion. Using Scooty to get to work and back was a regular habit at this point, having owned it for around 6 or 7 months. One morning, I came out front of my house to see it missing from in front of my car. I looked around the house, called my roommates, knocked on neighbors doors, but no one had seen it!!!!
Scooty was stolen.
After filling a claim with the local police station, I began posting photos of my missing scooter on social media sites. One of which was reddit.
A local reddit member contacted me saying he had seen my stolen scooter and they he had contacted the police. Shortly after I had a knock on my door from the cops. Located only a few doors down from my house was my recovered scooter, stashed in an underground parking garage with much of the wiring and lock mechanism destroyed, but the rest of the scooter intact. Seems, even though the culprit had twisted the correct wires together to skip the ignition lock, he still couldn’t get it to fire up. Odd. Either-way I got my scooty back!
After fixing the wiring, and installing some anti-theft devices, scooty puff was back and rocking! and has been rocking ever since! It’s been slightly shy of a year now since the transmission exploded. I stopped putting oil in it 6 months ago as it leaks so fast it ruins the world anywhere I park, yet somehow it still finds and drips oil out the cracks. I don’t see too much life still left in it, especially since the prices for used parts on eBay is retarded for SH50’s, especially as I keep getting the scooters for free. I’ve had two others during this period, a free and extremely damaged Riva 125cc and most recently a poorly running Honda Dio. More on the Dio soon….
As mentioned above, I acquired a Honda Dio from a local. He had seen Scooty Puff Jr at a local car meet one night and was inspired by the fun I was having.
He too wanted to play, so he sourced a rescue scoot and began tinkering! One night Mathew rolls up to the local car meet on this crunchy slammed Dio. It looked great! Matthew, another rider and I all went for a aimless ride around the city in the middle of the night which involved waking up neighborhoods, sparks and yelling at strangers. It was pseudo-wholesome fun. Dictating some of the fun was the fact that the Dio would not run at wide open throttle. This happened to have an affect on Mathew’s intro to scooting, as he just couldn’t keep up with my already anemic scooty puff and Brians equally casual Honda Aero 50. Shortly after I got a message from Matthew stating he was moving and couldn’t take his scoot with him. He dropped it off at my house!
Here’s a tip for those of you playing with junk scooters. It needs the air box!!! After a few test rides I determined the fueling was incorrect for the Dio. At initial crack, the throttle felt great with a strong bump in the rear from the Dio. After 50% throttle the scooter would die. Crusing at 50% was spotty as the fueling would cut in and out. Installed over the carb was an aftermarket intake pod filter, great for flow! But I knew that 2 stroke intakes and exhausts are tuned to match each other, and this was not the original intake, though it still has the original exhaust. Before tearing the carb apart I decided to ‘try something’. Placing a piece of gorilla tape halfway covering the carb opening completely resolved the weird fueling issues. Not enough vacuum to draw fuel into the motor, opening the intake resulted in a lean condition.
Since this fix the Dio has been awesome! Slowly I’m customizing it as free junk comes available, including continuing my horn fetish. A lovely Wolo two tone air horn. 😀 This is how “Huffin Puffin” looks today! Thanks Matthew!