New guy - First Vespa - Copper plated Rally
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Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:31 pm quote
Hi, I just bought my first Vespa from a local guy here in Phoenix. It's a 1976 Rally 200. I'm not sure exactly what is original on it because I'm not really familiar with these (although I've been doing a lot of reading). It has a later P200 engine with the autolube. The tail light doesn't look correct for a rally 200, and there is no key ignition. It also has no battery - again not sure if this is correct for this model or engine but he said it has a 12 volt system.

The guy I bought it from restored the scooter himself. He said there was absolutely no bondo used and to highlight it, he had it completely copper plated. I love the look but the patina has darkened over time. I'm playing with the idea of using some salt and lemon juice to bring back the shiny copper and letting it re-patina. I'll try to post a picture of when it was first copper plated so you can see the difference.

I have a few small things I'm planning on doing, like replacing the rubber mat, kick stand boots and cowl rubber. I'm not sure if I should change the tail light or not. Because the bike is already modded, I'm not sure going to a stock original style tail light is needed. What about stripes? Would you guys go with white or silver? Or just leave it as is with none? The speedo works - kind of....it basically shows 20kph when stopped and quickly pegs past 120 and off scale when in 3rd gear just cruising.

I'm planning on storing it for the next 3 or 4 months as the temps are in the 110 plus and just too warm for riding. After a lot of searching I can't seem to find if the carb has a drain for the bowl. On my dirtbike, I drain the carb bowl and then with the fuel off, run the bike until it dies. I'm planning on adding stabil to the tank, topping it off and then will run it to circulate. I'll pull the plug, drop a small amount of oil in and kick it over a few times. No battery to worry about so no tender required. Is there anything else I need to do to store? It will be stored inside a garage. One more question - what oil are you guys running?

Thanks for any help. I'll try to post a few pictures. Last one shows the original patina that I prefer before it darkened.

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Veni, Vidi, Posti
px200 cutdown,px180,px150. Puch SR. Puch scooterette
Joined: 08 Apr 2009
Posts: 5109
Location: west aus
Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:09 pm quote
Looks really good .





Too warm for riding bwaaahaaahaa
Molto Verboso
Lambretta GP200, Vespa P200e
Joined: 10 Jan 2015
Posts: 1178
Location: United States
Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:10 pm quote
Looks cool. I'd take some brasso to it and oldish the hell out of it!
The taillight is it a rally tail light. Looks like a super sport tail light .
Here is the correct tail light. Yes euro tail light not hideous US spec tractor tail light.

http://www.scooterwest.com/items/?_pageCCS=t#page=/item_details/Rally-1970-s-Euro-Tail-Light/561

No - there is no float drain. Just turn fuel off and run it dry.
Sound like you have laying up procedure correct. Just try to keep elevated so tired don't get flat spots. Put brick under each stand foot and a jack stand to prop up rear.
2 strike oil - I use motul 800. 710 is good or any good quality synthetic.
Ossessionato
73 & 74 Rally, 76 ET3, 80 P200, 06 PX150, 61 Ser 2, 65 Silver Special, 86 & 96 Elite 80s, 2015 HD Road Glide Special, 2011 Ural Tourist
Joined: 18 Jan 2012
Posts: 3750
Location: Oceanside, CA
Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:05 am quote
See if you can really get it shiny! I'm undecided on stripes or not.

Is it just me or does that front fender look really high off the front tire? Like the spring is too long for it?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
'80 P200E, '76 Primavera 125 ET3. '59 Vespa 150
Joined: 30 Apr 2007
Posts: 6897
Location: GT, Texas
Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:25 am quote
110? Ride that sucker!

Copper plate was an interesting choice. I like. Looks pretty cool just like it is. Kinda steam pinkish.

I don't see anything wrong with your center matt or cowl rubber. Looks about as good as what I put on mine a year ago. Put a little armour all on it and see what happens.

I'd ride it just like it is right now before I started spending a bunch of cash on aesthetics.
Mr. Clean
P,SUPER,V90, 50 Special
Joined: 27 Jul 2010
Posts: 10207
Location: This is't my locker!
Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:21 am quote
I'd polish it.. maybe a little, maybe a lot.. just so you can get different patinas and interesting oxidation patterns.. the shot of the rear where the color wasn't all even looks pretty cool.

It'll no doubt turn all brown again.. it's like a bike you can keep freshening up the look... I'd like to see some of that green patina.. is that copper that goes green? or bronze? or both.. no matter.. looks like you could have never ending finish fun. not to be confused with Finnish fun.

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Ossessionato
Joined: 13 Jul 2006
Posts: 3358
Location: pacifica,ca.
Tue Jun 23, 2015 9:16 am quote
nice
Veni, Vidi, Posti
T5s
Joined: 19 Feb 2009
Posts: 17006
Location: The West Of Yorkshire ... Gods Country
Tue Jun 23, 2015 9:27 am quote
tuppence
let it go green .... green vespas are faster
Ossessionato
1979 P200e
Joined: 18 Mar 2013
Posts: 2667
Location: Lock Haven, PA
Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:23 am quote
Are you sure it's copper clad and not just a fancy copper-looking paint job? The only reason I ask is because the top of the headset is probably plastic (P series) or aluminum, and I can't see someone taking the time to clad both steel, alumuinum and/or plastic all at the same time.

Either way a cool color. I doubt you'd leave it in the weather long enough for it to go all green on ya. I went to college where all the older buildings on campus had copper roofs, and they looked so cool.
Molto Verboso
Lambretta GP200, Vespa P200e
Joined: 10 Jan 2015
Posts: 1178
Location: United States
Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:50 am quote
Larrytsg wrote:
Are you sure it's copper clad and not just a fancy copper-looking paint job? The only reason I ask is because the top of the headset is probably plastic (P series) or aluminum, and I can't see someone taking the time to clad both steel, alumuinum and/or plastic all at the same time.

Either way a cool color. I doubt you'd leave it in the weather long enough for it to go all green on ya. I went to college where all the older buildings on campus had copper roofs, and they looked so cool.
Pre P series large frames do not have plastic headset tops. They are one piece cast aluminum
bodgemaster
63 GL, 76 Super (x 2), 74 Primavera (x 2), 06 Fly 150
Joined: 26 Sep 2013
Posts: 5472
Location: So Cal
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:17 am quote
Brown! Woohoo brother!
Style Maven
74 50s x3 78 P200 84 Cosa PK50XL2 58 AllState 68 Sprint 80 50special '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 7879
Location: seattle/athens
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:27 am quote
swimming against the current

sorry, could not resist

Don't change a thing. Somebody went to a LOT of work to get this where it's at. Maybe add the stripes if you like, how about black. I'd even pay extra to have the stripe edges sort of fade into the copper, rather than be crisp as new stripes would usually be.



I don't think paint would do this ^^^ and that's not a P headset, it's stock Rally(see the spreedo?) one piece cast aluminum, copper plated. Doable, likely expensive without a good hookup at the platers.

Your speedo problem doesn't sound like the cable or gear(speed keeps jumping between different speeds or won't move) , but if you're quick there's a Rally speedo on ScootNet for only $25. http://scoot.net/classifieds/forsale.html?id=53492
Quote:
I'm not sure if I should change the tail light or not.
Yes, you should. That looks like brand new chromed plastic and is way too new looking for the bike anyway. You need any nice lite that looks something like this, maybe polished up a bit. Keep watching ScootNet & be patient, something you like will turn up and you're right, doesn't have to be a Rally lite.

Img_4912.jpg



Last edited by V oodoo on Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:44 am; edited 2 times in total
Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:31 am quote
Thanks for all of the replies and suggestions. Yes the entire scoot was copper plated including the headset. I believe it was chrome plated first and then the copper plating was over the chrome. I think that is what the previous owner told me anyway. He didn't do it himself but had it done professionally.

As far as the rubber, the mat has a small tear in it and it's pretty brittle. One of the cowl rubbers is also nicked a bit. These are cheap, so I figure I'll replace them now along with the stand boots which are almost done.

Thanks for the suggestion about blocking it up off the tires and also for the oil recommendations. I appreciate all of the help.
Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:36 am quote
V oodoo -

Thanks for the heads up on the speedo. Sent him a message to see if it's still available.
Molto Verboso
1966 Bluebadge, 1974 Super 150
Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 1117
Location: New York City
Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:56 am quote
V oodoo wrote:

sorry, could not resist

Don't change a thing. Somebody went to a LOT of work to get this where it's at. Maybe add the stripes if you like, how about black. I'd even pay extra to have the stripe edges sort of fade into the copper, rather than be crisp as new stripes would usually be.



I don't think paint would do this ^^^ and that's not a P headset, it's stock Rally(see the spreedo?) one piece cast aluminum, copper plated. Doable, likely expensive without a good hookup at the platers.

Your speedo problem doesn't sound like the cable or gear(speed keeps jumping between different speeds or won't move) , but if you're quick there's a Rally speedo on ScootNet for only $25. http://scoot.net/classifieds/forsale.html?id=53492
Quote:
I'm not sure if I should change the tail light or not.
Yes, you should. That looks like brand new chromed plastic and is way too new looking for the bike anyway. You need any nice lite that looks something like this, maybe polished up a bit. Keep watching ScootNet & be patient, something you like will turn up and you're right, doesn't have to be a Rally lite.
Voodoo is my homeboy.
Molto Verboso
Vespa GS150, Messerschmitt GS150
Joined: 21 Jan 2013
Posts: 1061
Location: Glasgow
Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:12 pm quote
Thats a fantastic finish, would like to know how the guy achieved it, I do agree the front mudguard looks a bit odd. Ride & Enjoy.
Ossessionato
1979 P200e
Joined: 18 Mar 2013
Posts: 2667
Location: Lock Haven, PA
Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:26 pm quote
Before you touch the finish on the scoot, bring a piece of it (like the cowl) to a paint/plating shop to verify whether it's a wonderful paint job or a plating job. A good professional can tell you for sure. I'd hate for you to muck up a really nice paint job by trying to polish it like it was platred, and vice versa.

It's a really nice looking scoot either way.
Style Maven
74 50s x3 78 P200 84 Cosa PK50XL2 58 AllState 68 Sprint 80 50special '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 7879
Location: seattle/athens
Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:40 pm quote
Or just a short light scratch in an out of sight area and you should see bright copper, but please don't polish it. Like the poor lady who enhanced that painting, how will you know when you're done?
Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:11 pm quote
Ok - hope I didn't get carried away but I had to try the lemon/salt trick. I took the inside of one of the cowls and using half a lemon and some salt I rubbed it down. It literally changes right before your eye. Took about 5 minutes to wipe away the dark patina.

You can see on the other untouched cowl, it was starting to patina in green. Also some green under the headset. After googling copper patina, it appears the green color comes out when it has contact with water (like on a copper roof). There are a lot of examples online of how to patina different greens/blues on copper. Not sure I'm going to experiment on it though, more than what I have already done here.

I took a few close ups to also show the patina line under the cowls where they meet the body. The less exposure has kept some of the copper shine to it instead of turning it dark.

I'll leave the cowl off for storage to see how the patina changes over the next few months but since it will be kept inside, I don't think we will see much of a drastic change. I don't care for how the inside of the cowl turned out as it sits. I will not be doing this to the entire scooter unless the patina really changes on it. We shall see with time how it ends up. Worst case, it will darken up like on the inside of the other cowl.

Here are a few pictures -

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Molto Verboso
1966 Bluebadge, 1974 Super 150
Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 1117
Location: New York City
Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:15 pm quote
You might be removing the copper with lemon juice and salt. Just a heads up. You might want to treat it like cutting compound on paint until you know for sure.

I coated nails with copper pennies by putting them in a similar solution in grade school.
Molto Verboso
1966 Bluebadge, 1974 Super 150
Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 1117
Location: New York City
Molto Verboso
Vespa GS150, Messerschmitt GS150
Joined: 21 Jan 2013
Posts: 1061
Location: Glasgow
Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:20 pm quote
check your oil breather nut on the clutch cover, it looks like there is oil on the inside of the tyre wall. would also check your oil level is ok.

if you are happy with the way it looks, spray some acf50 onto the body work, make sure it doesn't get on the tyres or brake shoes.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
'80 P200E, '76 Primavera 125 ET3. '59 Vespa 150
Joined: 30 Apr 2007
Posts: 6897
Location: GT, Texas
Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:24 pm quote
Yep. That's definitely copper. Cool.
Mr. Clean
P,SUPER,V90, 50 Special
Joined: 27 Jul 2010
Posts: 10207
Location: This is't my locker!
Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:07 pm quote
that headset and shift handle look bitchin'
Style Maven
74 50s x3 78 P200 84 Cosa PK50XL2 58 AllState 68 Sprint 80 50special '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 7879
Location: seattle/athens
Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:12 pm quote
^^^ yes. They do.

Go slow, go easy.

bodgemaster
63 GL, 76 Super (x 2), 74 Primavera (x 2), 06 Fly 150
Joined: 26 Sep 2013
Posts: 5472
Location: So Cal
Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:16 pm quote
What an interesting bike... someone really loved that thing. Any idea when or where the plating was done?

It would have been off the charts eye candy when it was freshly plated. There's a copper plated Lambretta on the interweb .. google it for an idea what the finish might have looked like new.

I agree with the crowd, live with the patina for a while before you start going all Statue of Liberty on it. It should keep aging nicely.
Molto Verboso
Joined: 24 Jan 2008
Posts: 1994
Location: Santa Margarita,Ca.
Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:23 am quote
Polish the hell out of it and then lemon/salt the Rally stripes on.
Hooked
72 Euro Rally 180 - 74 USA Rally 200 - 1966 SS 180
Joined: 16 Aug 2009
Posts: 397
Location: Detroit
Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:50 am quote
scootermarc69 wrote:
Polish the hell out of it and then lemon/salt the Rally stripes on.
This would actually be cool.
Addicted
1965 Sprint 166, 2008 LXS150
Joined: 20 May 2012
Posts: 523
Location: Ventura, CA
Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:27 pm quote
If you want to quickly tarnish cooper to make the brown and turquoise happen put it in an enclosed space with a bowl of ammonia. The fumes will react with it and make new copper look 100 years old. I do it all the time with my art work. For a big object you would need to make a tent or something.
Hooked
Bo - midnight blue GT200 R.I.P. Tethys - 300 GTS Titanium
Joined: 22 Jul 2008
Posts: 473
Location: Bowie, MD
Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:34 pm quote
daily use?
If you put this in daily use, it will be interesting to see the natural polish points. At parks and such that have eye level copper busts, people seem to want to touch the noses. So, the rest of the statue patina's but the nose stays shiny new. I went to some historical park with lots of copper busts of Lincoln, and it looked like they had put a Rudolf nose on him!

https://harleyandcrystal.wordpress.com/page/2/

Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:47 pm quote
Not sure exactly how to check the oil breather nut. There was/is a small amount of oil on the tire and around the case by the breather (I did find the nut) but it was really a tight space to even get a hand near it. I opened up the fill and oil poured out. I let it run out until it was just a slow drip. Maybe it was previously overfilled? Read on here that it should not pour out. It didn't smell like gas at all and wasn't excessively thin.

I'll plan to change out the oil when I take it back out of storage.

Yes - this scooter will be a daily driver. Just for zooming around town etc. My wife wants to take it to her yoga/Pilates classes etc.

Thanks for the ammonia idea. That sounds pretty neat.
Molto Verboso
59 Vespa, 65 Vespa, 66 Vespa, 57 Vespa
Joined: 10 May 2011
Posts: 1323
Location: Portland Oregon
Wed Jun 24, 2015 5:30 pm quote
Don't polish it.. just leave it.. will have a steampunk vibe.
Style Maven
74 50s x3 78 P200 84 Cosa PK50XL2 58 AllState 68 Sprint 80 50special '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 7879
Location: seattle/athens
Wed Jun 24, 2015 10:12 pm quote
What to do...
Look at it this way, if you spent lots of time carefully disassembling/assembling, big bucks & risk getting everything stripped to bare metal, pickled & copper plated, then had to wait years to go from this



eventually evolving into this,



what would you advise?

That said, it IS your bike and you really do need to please yourself regardless of internet opinion. Slow & easy for minimal regrets later if you're unsure.
Member
Joined: 31 May 2015
Posts: 9
Location: Phoenix AZ
Wed Jun 24, 2015 11:38 pm quote
Agreed on NOT overdoing the patina - I think I saw that picture of the original patina with those vivid blue colors and immediately wanted that look. After looking at it, I will probably just let the natural patina work and see what it turns into. I'm still undecided on stripes but thought it might look cool. I could always try the sticker kit, and if it looked good, then have them professionally painted on later.

I can also call or email the previous owner and find out where he had the copper plating done. He is a very nice guy. I believe it was here in Phoenix and I think he said he completed the bike only 5 or 6 years ago. So it really didn't take all that long for the transformation to occur. He did have the bike outside though.

Short story about the purchase, I posted a wanted add on Craigslist here in Phoenix and he responded that he had this and a 1956 Allstate Supercruiser for sale. Here is what he mentioned about the Rally.

"I restored both of them myself with Bob Darnell. Bob worked with me on them at his Vespa shop here in Phx. before he left for Texas, If you have looked into vintage vespas, then you should be familiar with Bobs Work.. after all he wrote the book on restoring them".

I've never heard of Mr. Darnell but apparently he wrote a book on Vintage Vespa's. I'm still really new with the Vespa. I did take the air filter out and cleaned it while I was looking for the oil breather. Looking forward to learning more about this and other vintage Vespa's. Thanks so far for all of the help and information.
Molto Verboso
many
Joined: 10 Jan 2007
Posts: 1046
Location: NY
Thu Jun 25, 2015 5:24 am quote
Quote:
that headset and shift handle look bitchin'
It really does!



Rob
Hooked
1978 50 Special, 79 P200e, 74 Primavera
Joined: 29 Feb 2012
Posts: 117
Location: Oregon
Thu Jun 25, 2015 6:47 am quote
Sweet!


I love it! What an interesting and unique look. I'd leave it just as it is.

I use Motul 710 on my scoots, BTW.
Style Maven
74 50s x3 78 P200 84 Cosa PK50XL2 58 AllState 68 Sprint 80 50special '66(?) Super125
Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 7879
Location: seattle/athens
Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:33 am quote


Bob Darnell - I looked thru my stack and found I actually have this book, came w/ my V90
Here's some bio info from your local paper http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/news/close-to-the-vespa-6424653
Ossessionato
1964 GS 160 MK II, 1967 Vespa GT, 1968 SS180, 1964 Vespa GL, 1964 Vespa VBB, 2006 Buddy 125, 2013 BMW C650GT
Joined: 07 Apr 2008
Posts: 3031
Location: Boca Raton, Florida
Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:42 am quote
It would be a tough choice for me.

Patina...which looks great...and let's admit...is a lot less work

Polish and lacquer - lots of work...but would look slamming!

Keep us updated!
Ossessionato
Joined: 22 Oct 2011
Posts: 4387
Location: Tega Cay, SC
Sat Jun 27, 2015 5:16 am quote
You could leave it as is and apply some decent wax product. IMHO - leave the stripes off. It won't add any character to the scoot. I put them on my Rally because it is the only one that I am aware that has any sort of applied decals/stripes. It made it stand out a little, but also looked fine before. Yours needs nothing - it's one of a kind and sweet looking on it's own. Nice find.
bodgemaster
63 GL, 76 Super (x 2), 74 Primavera (x 2), 06 Fly 150
Joined: 26 Sep 2013
Posts: 5472
Location: So Cal
Sat Jun 27, 2015 7:58 am quote
Monit ... paging Monit..

If anyone knows about shining up metal, he does. I'd like to hear how he'd deal with a copper plated scoot..
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