The trouble with buying your dream scooter over the net..

The trouble with...

By Sam Schembri-Portland

Never before has the old saying "Buyer Beware" had more significance for the modern day scooterist.

If you've been involved in the booming scooter industry or keen on old scooters at all, you would have heard all about the thousands of scooters sold all around the world each year which start their new lives in sweaty Asian chop shops.

Of course there are some good ones out there, I am referring to the many many hundreds of 'dealers' who are set up to rip people off for as long as they can before being shut down.

The aim of their game is to find the cheapest scooters they can, remove all the original, pitted and dull looking parts and replace them with poorly chromed and badly made parts that they think we would like to see on the scooters. They add home made shims where they need to in order to make parts pit without rattling and if a goo coke can shim won't fix it then they have learned that epoxy resin will!

If you don't have access to "O" rings you can simply make them out of some cotton and electrical tape!

This is how the story unfolds all over the world....

A person spots an old Vespa or Lambretta online and falls in love with it.......thats's fair enough-who wouldn't?

They check it out from all angles, looks good, it has a great write up by someone who sounds like they know what they are talking about so that gives them some confidence.

They search online and find that other scooters are fetching similar prices all over the world so they decide to think about it some more.

That night they can't get to sleep as they think about how cool it will be to pull up at the coffee shop and watch all the heads turn to check out the old scooters and it's cool rider!

The next day they check it out again, notice someone else is bidding and as they have pictured themselves on it already, riding through the streets with the warm summer air on their face they decide there and then to buy it.

A few weeks and a bit of extra cash later the crate arrives at the port, yipppeeee. They rush down and pay all the appropriate fees to all and sundry, organise to get the crate home, dreaming of their first sidewalk macchiato.

After all the unpacking and admiring from afar it's time to start her up, or at least try to!

This is the step where people start to realise what they've bought into the country and where I usually get all my business from.

Sometimes they'll be lucky and get going for the time being. That might be for 10kms, 100kms or even 1000kms but when things go wrong and they finally have to drop and open the engine they discover things that make their hair curl!

On investigation, one of the very first things they hear from the so called 'people in the know' is ...'can't help you-sorry.'

Most shops just won't touch Asian restored scooters. There's probably some legal reason why Vespa shops won't touch them. This has got to be the single biggest warning sign of them all when doing your purchsing homework. When you ring the bigger Vespa shops in the country and ask "Can you service my old Vespa?" , one of the very first questions they'll ask is where is it from? I'm almost 100% sure they all give you the same answer.

So what do you do if you've bought an Asian restored Vespa and it won't go?

We should be able to get you going again and well enough to pass your roadworthy test which is our goal of course.

You can also look at this phenomenon from another angle completely. This is the scenario I am personally fighting against. Essentially, every single old Vespa or Lambretta coming out of Asia has been restored to death. Despite the restorers thinking they are selling an old scooter to someone to use as transport, in actual fact they've done the opposite. They are modifying them so heavily or the work is of such a poor standard that the new owners dreams of riding a classic scooter to the cafes will never be realised without first having to spend much more hard earned cash on it.

Scootissimo came about to try to help those people get those old scooters on the road rather than losing them to the Asian Scooter rip off scams, it's bad enough that people have spent thousands already on their scooter dreams, throwing good money after bad hurts even more..

Email now if this sounds like it's happened to you or even someone you know.

We are NOT here to say.."that's what you getwhen you buy a scooter online from Asia"! ...which is all you'll hear from lots of scooter shop people all over the country, believe me! I've heard it all myself!!

We are here to help you, for a reasonable price we'll get you scooting again and what's more..SAFELY!! We'll remove all the crappy scooter bling and home made modifications so you'll pass your roadworthy inspection with flying colours. We don't pass anything back to you with any kind of guarantee (we can't do that) we just get your scooter running smootly and you'll have that long awaited "scooter grin" ...sitting at your local cafe admiring your pride and joy on the footpath.


Email now!!

We CAN Help.