F*ck the guy who decided on the spark plug location
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Ossessionato
73 Rally, 74 Rally, 76 ET3, 80 P200, 06 PX150, 65 Li225 Silver Special, 86,95,96 Elite 80s, 2015 HD Road Glide Special, 2011 Ural Tourist
Joined: 18 Jan 2012
Posts: 3403
Location: Oceanside/ SF
Fri Feb 23, 2018 5:43 pm quote
Blipvert wrote:
Now that my knuckles are healing, how important is the plastic cover that goes over the spark plug area? I didn't bother putting it back as it looked largely cosmetic.
Important since the engine is air cooled. Take a break from wrenching on it and let your hands heal and cover it before it warms up or you really heat up the motor.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
LX190, Primavera
Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 6155
Location: New Zealand
Wed Feb 28, 2018 11:04 am quote
Piaggio assembly line workers have smaller hands than regular folks. Spark plug installation is a breeze.

Exhibit A:
http://modernvespa.com/forum/post2224699#2224699
Molto Verboso
2017 GTS300 Supersport (The Yella 'Un aka The Sting)
Joined: 13 May 2017
Posts: 1914
Location: UK, EU
Wed Feb 28, 2018 11:45 am quote
znomit wrote:
Piaggio assembly line workers have smaller hands than regular folks. Spark plug installation is a breeze.

Exhibit A:
http://modernvespa.com/forum/post2224699#2224699
Very good.
Molto Verboso
LXS 150
Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 1009
Location: The OTHER South Bay, CA
Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:45 pm quote
znomit wrote:
Piaggio assembly line workers have smaller hands than regular folks. Spark plug installation is a breeze.

Exhibit A:
http://modernvespa.com/forum/post2224699#2224699
They're also handy for broadcasting:

"Wee paws, for Station Identification."
Ossessionato
2015 GTS 300 Super (Melody)
Joined: 22 Apr 2015
Posts: 2400
Location: Asbury Park, NJ
Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:54 pm quote
Blipvert wrote:
I mean, weather could be a factor too. Who rides these when it's sub-freezing?
Um...me.

BTW, I dig the Max Headroom ref in your screen name.

melodysnownew17.jpg
Rain, snow, gloom of night - all at once, and I wasn't even delivering mail.

Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: 11 Jun 2011
Posts: 2380
Location: Starfleet Command Engineering, Southern UK HQ,
Thu Mar 01, 2018 7:43 am quote
It's all just practice guys! Once you've done it a time or two, you don't even think about it. Oh and get the right tools before you do the job!
Hooked
Joined: 07 Jan 2018
Posts: 188

Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:56 pm quote
amateriat wrote:
Blipvert wrote:
I mean, weather could be a factor too. Who rides these when it's sub-freezing?
Um...me.

BTW, I dig the Max Headroom ref in your screen name.
Thanks. I used to be cool now I'm just old.
Ossessionato
Triumph Street Scrambler 2018, Suzuki VanVan200 (sold), 2015 Sprint 125 (sold)
Joined: 12 Apr 2015
Posts: 2148
Location: Finland
Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:42 am quote
Stromrider wrote:
It's all just practice guys! Once you've done it a time or two, you don't even think about it. Oh and get the right tools before you do the job!
This is always the worst excuse for what is initially bad engineering from Piaggio's side....but at the same time, so true.

Going to this direction, I might add that a good workshop manual is also a life safer for many machines....it's much nicer to take note on various hidden bits and pieces before the famous learning word "D'oh!".

My personal special skill is to broke all tiny, hidden, often plastic fasteners by using too much force in a wrong way...and after this, searching for a workshop manual
Enthusiast
GTS300IE
Joined: 01 Mar 2017
Posts: 64
Location: Hove, UK, EU
Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:25 am quote
I lost half an afternoon, the first time with my Et4. Never had a problem at all after that, except scrapes (obviously).
Ossessionato
2006 GT200
Joined: 23 Feb 2016
Posts: 2716
Location: Moscow, Idaho
Mon Mar 05, 2018 2:17 pm quote
[quote="RRider"]
Stromrider wrote:
My personal special skill is to broke all tiny, hidden, often plastic fasteners by using too much force in a wrong way...and after this, searching for a workshop manual
Ah, so you're the guy who worked on my GT200 before I bought it!
Member
et4
Joined: 20 Mar 2017
Posts: 17
Location: East Cheshire
Tue Mar 06, 2018 1:45 pm quote
Try changing the dash blower on a VW T3, i think they built the rest around it!
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 37879
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:21 pm quote
jrt wrote:
Try changing the dash blower on a VW T3, i think they built the rest around it!
I've just lubed the bearings on my T3 dash blower - and fitted a Jeep resistor in place of the OEM one. That's the second time I've had the dash off - far easier this time round! So a bit like the Vespa spark plug - once you've worked out a good way of doing it, it's not so tricky after all.
Hooked
Joined: 17 Jul 2015
Posts: 116
Location: California, SF
Fri Mar 09, 2018 7:31 pm quote
It must have been the old as dirt guy and his father, the used car salesman, who designed it. Hey JC, when are you gonna throw me off this site? Iím trying to find a way to close my account and I canít do it. That old fart keeps insulting me and youíre not doing anything about it. BTW, is he really old or just drunk all the time?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 7915
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Fri Mar 09, 2018 7:38 pm quote
Sspcpa wrote:
It must have been the old as dirt guy and his father, the used car salesman, who designed it. Hey JC, when are you gonna throw me off this site? Iím trying to find a way to close my account and I canít do it. That old fart keeps insulting me and youíre not doing anything about it. BTW, is he really old or just drunk all the time?
I think a moderator will be taking care of that for you in a few minutes.
Sat Mar 10, 2018 8:34 am
Sspcpa has been ejected from this topic
Hooked
BV 350 ABS/ASR
Joined: 10 Apr 2015
Posts: 175
Location: Planet X
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:54 pm quote
Fudmucker wrote:
Italians believe they are lovers, not mechanics.....snip
There is a T-shirt that reads: Moto Guzzi - Turning motorcycle riders into mechanics since 1921.

Had some fun working on an old Fiat 600. It was small, and the engine could fit on my coffee table. (I was single at the time)

I had nightmares Lucas did the electrical bits
Ossessionato
2006 GT200
Joined: 23 Feb 2016
Posts: 2716
Location: Moscow, Idaho
Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:38 am quote
Swapped out the plug yesterday and have the tools and experience to get it in and out pretty quickly BUT...

It turns out all the NGK plugs available in town don't no longer have the little spark plug cap/nipple, which "back in the day" always used to come in the box

Ok, no problem, right? Just unscrew it from the old plug.... NOPE! That cap is now integral to the plugs that have it. So, after breaking the original plug trying to unscrew that unscrewable cap, on the morning of what promised to be the warmest Sunday in four months , I wasted an hour driving around to parts stores ...luckily one had an obscure brand that would work.

And I was reminded that last year at this time the new plug got stuck in that f----ing Piaggio tool-kit socket so that I couldn't ride and had to wait for a new plug to come in.

So, yeah, about those new Kawasaki Versys 300x on the showroom floors....
Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
Joined: 29 Dec 2007
Posts: 11037
Location: Oregon City, OR
Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:54 pm quote
tdrake wrote:
Swapped out the plug yesterday and have the tools and experience to get it in and out pretty quickly BUT...

It turns out all the NGK plugs available in town don't no longer have the little spark plug cap/nipple, which "back in the day" always used to come in the box.

Ok, no problem, right? Just unscrew it from the old plug.... NOPE! That cap is now integral to the plugs that have it. So, after breaking the original plug trying to unscrew that unscrewable cap, on the morning of what promised to be the warmest Sunday in four months, I wasted an hour driving around to parts stores ...luckily one had an obscure brand that would work.

And I was reminded that last year at this time the new plug got stuck in that f----ing Piaggio tool-kit socket so that I couldn't ride and had to wait for a new plug to come in.
Why do you need to change your plug annually? The plug in my various Modern Vespas seems to last for many years.
Ossessionato
2006 GT200
Joined: 23 Feb 2016
Posts: 2716
Location: Moscow, Idaho
Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:20 pm quote
Dooglas wrote:
Why do you need to change your plug annually? The plug in my various Modern Vespas seems to last for many years.
ĎBout every 4K miles, which I believe is what senior manuel calls for. And Iíve class clocked bout 7k a year...
Ossessionato
Triumph Street Scrambler 2018, Suzuki VanVan200 (sold), 2015 Sprint 125 (sold)
Joined: 12 Apr 2015
Posts: 2148
Location: Finland
Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:28 pm quote
tdrake wrote:
Dooglas wrote:
Why do you need to change your plug annually? The plug in my various Modern Vespas seems to last for many years.
ĎBout every 4K miles, which I believe is what senior manuel calls for. And Iíve class clocked bout 7k a year...
The effect of a new plug may sometimes be hard to notice on scoots, even more so on multi-cylinder bikes or cars if the old plug is still almost OK. I've learned to appreciate frequent spark plug change via small garden equipment, like 4-stroke lawn movers etc. Even if the plug looks OK, it often makes wonders when you'll change it soon enough. Not to mention e.g. tiny 25cc 2-stroke garden/forest tools, but that's a different story altogether.
Ossessionato
Triumph Street Scrambler 2018, Suzuki VanVan200 (sold), 2015 Sprint 125 (sold)
Joined: 12 Apr 2015
Posts: 2148
Location: Finland
Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:55 pm quote
tdrake wrote:
So, yeah, about those new Kawasaki Versys 300x on the showroom floors....
I've looked at the pics you've posted...those nicely curvy, and also very straight , wide open, smooth (!) dirt/gravel roads. How should I put this politely...no, there's no way to do it: you must be just a bit MASOCHIST to putter those away with a Vespa only

Keep the ol' pal for other adventures and get yourself a new friend, which will enjoy the beautifull, rough scenery with you and and even let you change the plug easily. The latter part alone is a good justification for the purchase.

By the way, damn Scotter on the Retro thread have got me interested on KTM family again...the 390 single cylinder unit used in Duke and the new Husqvarna is propably the best light weight single cylinder engine there is...but I have to say Versys 300 looks like a bike for your scenery, and is actually much better priced (at least here). Under 200kg and over 40hp is a good recipe for a bit of off/rough roading....
Hooked
bv350, Brutale 910
Joined: 19 Jan 2011
Posts: 316
Location: LA CA
Mon Jan 27, 2020 3:40 pm quote
just ordered new irid plugs, pulled this thread up again for the chuckles. glad I have small hands.
Sponsor
Granturismo 218
Joined: 04 Feb 2013
Posts: 5781
Location: NWAOK
Mon Jan 27, 2020 5:15 pm quote
I changed one out about a week ago, and this thread came back to mind. I have seriously considered boring a hole into the side of the scooter, and wondered what size rubber plug I could get to plug it up once I did so. Piaggio has a round plug that is used on the bottom of some models and it would be perfect to cover the hole I want to drill in the side of the scooter every time I change a spark plug. My biggest issue is that I would probably drill it in the wrong place.
Ossessionato
LXV 150 3v ie. Midnight Blue (Sold)
Joined: 06 Dec 2010
Posts: 3131
Location: Bangkok
Mon Jan 27, 2020 5:59 pm quote
Masala wrote:
Blipvert wrote:
I am entirely certain they hung a single spark plug from a wire and built an entire f*cking scooter around it.
Ferrari definitely used that method on some of their 70s engines, beginning with the starter motor, and assembling everything else around it. I feel your pain...
Was it the Chevy Nova with a big block where one had to jack the engine up to change the plugs on one bank? Or was it a Pontiac?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Lx 50 4T, GTS 250, Something Chinese
Joined: 21 Feb 2011
Posts: 7709
Location: KS USA
Mon Jan 27, 2020 6:18 pm quote
Thank you for reviving this thread. A lot of good old folks here.
Ossessionato
GTS 250ie
Joined: 21 Jun 2008
Posts: 2040
Location: Rhode Island
Mon Jan 27, 2020 8:51 pm quote
waspmike wrote:
...Was it the Chevy Nova with a big block where one had to jack the engine up to change the plugs on one bank? Or was it a Pontiac?
Chevy Cavalier V6. They took a motor designed for longitudinal installation, turned it sideways, crammed it into a compact engine bay.

Nobody noticed an issue until the cars started coming in for their first plug change. They had to change the plugs for free for the life of the car.
Ossessionato
Yamaha Tricity 155 Urban 2019 - MV Agusta 125 RS 1956 - Moto Guzzi Airone 250 Sport 1951
Joined: 21 Jul 2007
Posts: 2555
Location: Latina (Italy)
Mon Jan 27, 2020 11:58 pm quote
Fudmucker wrote:
Italians believe they are lovers, not mechanics.

Ever tried taking off the starter motor on a '70s Alfa Romeo...?
The top bolt can only be reached from behind the gearbox
using (in order) plug socket, short extension, universal joint, long extension and ratchet spanner.
Replacing is a similar nightmare using a piece of hose and then the long unmanageable floppy contraption above.

My buddy has a '72 Porsche 911E. When it goes to the shop, they simply remove the engine and mount it on a jig before changing spark plugs etc.
That's the easiest way of working on the air-cooled VW Beetles too. Disconnect the wires, disconnect the fuel line and plug with a no.2 Phillips screwdriver. Undo four bolts and rock it off the gearbox on a trolley jack. 10 minutes max.
That's why we have a lot of sex in the car.
Then when we have sorrows of love we take the car to make the coupon or to the car wash instead of going to an analyst.
Fud did a fair and concise analysis, congratulations!

But the masterpieces are born from the inspiration that is the daughter of emotions, a German car will be very functional and rational but does not inspire feelings; an Italian vehicle does it, it also pisses you off but it makes you feel alive with it ... that's the difference.
It's like buying a robot dog and buying a real dog.
I remind you that this community was born from an object fruit of feeling and today in turn generates feelings, it is no small thing.
Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: 11 Jun 2011
Posts: 2380
Location: Starfleet Command Engineering, Southern UK HQ,
Tue Jan 28, 2020 2:43 am quote
[quote="tdrake"]
RRider wrote:
Stromrider wrote:
My personal special skill is to broke all tiny, hidden, often plastic fasteners by using too much force in a wrong way...and after this, searching for a workshop manual
Ah, so you're the guy who worked on my GT200 before I bought it!
No, I didn't. And I didn't say that either. Wrong quote...lol.
Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: 11 Jun 2011
Posts: 2380
Location: Starfleet Command Engineering, Southern UK HQ,
Tue Jan 28, 2020 2:55 am quote
I'm moved to say again..."get the right tools to do the job". This should be a long spark plug socket with rubber insert that fits over the spark plug to hold it in place firmly. You are usually best off not using one that has an attached socket handle as this often gets in the way of doing a proper job. Most techs just use a straight socket. It MUST be suitable for open wrench use (17mm) so you can get an open wrench on the end of it to undo it, and do it up again. You don't need a socket ratchet or torque wrench. Those are harder to use and not needed.

Before starting, make sure to twist the spark plug cap into a position where it clears the spark plug cap retaining clip then remover the spark plug cap. Then using the above it's just so so easy to unscrew the plug with no scraped fingers or knuckles. Just make sure to follow the spark plug manufacturers instructions on tightening. It only just needs nipping up to 12-13nm of torque which is not much.

The whole process is normally best carried out with the bike on the centre stand. This gives easy access to the spark plug area and usually gives the most clearance.
Ossessionato
Yamaha Tricity 155 Urban 2019 - MV Agusta 125 RS 1956 - Moto Guzzi Airone 250 Sport 1951
Joined: 21 Jul 2007
Posts: 2555
Location: Latina (Italy)
Tue Jan 28, 2020 9:35 am quote
Ever tried to change the spark plugs on the T Max ..?
Having a special tool is not enough, it also takes experience to make contortions ...
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Modded Vespa 2017 GTV 300, BMW 2017 C650GT, Ural 2019 Gear Up
Joined: 21 May 2017
Posts: 6241
Location: Downtown Toronto
Tue Jan 28, 2020 10:10 am quote
Just reading through this thread and as much as people say doing your own wrenching is Zen I much prefer to drop off the bike and wait or walk/Uber/BMW free shuttle home and came back a day or so later. Sometimes I even get a loaner from the Piaggio dealer if Lou has one. I admire everyone that does their own work but I get frustrated way too easily and my wife, employees and even dogs much prefer me on an even kilter.
Addicted
GTS 300 Super
Joined: 13 Sep 2017
Posts: 988
Location: West Sacramento, CA
Tue Jan 28, 2020 10:56 am quote
My favorite thread in a while. The snarky sarcastic comments in reply as well as the Original Post is making my day!!!
Addicted
2013 GTS 300ie
Joined: 14 Feb 2013
Posts: 580
Location: Winston-Salem, NC
Tue Jan 28, 2020 4:18 pm quote
Free shuttle or a loaner?!? What strange magic is this?
I dream of being near a dealer that offers this. Maybe one day.
Ossessionato
Yamaha Tricity 155 Urban 2019 - MV Agusta 125 RS 1956 - Moto Guzzi Airone 250 Sport 1951
Joined: 21 Jul 2007
Posts: 2555
Location: Latina (Italy)
Wed Jan 29, 2020 2:49 am quote
Harbinger wrote:
Just reading through this thread and as much as people say doing your own wrenching is Zen I much prefer to drop off the bike and wait or walk/Uber/BMW free shuttle home and came back a day or so later. Sometimes I even get a loaner from the Piaggio dealer if Lou has one. I admire everyone that does their own work but I get frustrated way too easily and my wife, employees and even dogs much prefer me on an even kilter.
Are you hiring me as an employee?
Member
et4
Joined: 20 Mar 2017
Posts: 17
Location: East Cheshire
Thu Jan 30, 2020 2:27 pm quote
Motovista wrote:
I changed one out about a week ago, and this thread came back to mind. I have seriously considered boring a hole into the side of the scooter, and wondered what size rubber plug I could get to plug it up once I did so. Piaggio has a round plug that is used on the bottom of some models and it would be perfect to cover the hole I want to drill in the side of the scooter every time I change a spark plug. My biggest issue is that I would probably drill it in the wrong place.
[/img]
I did mine last year after breaking down and having to take it out numerous times at the side of the road.

60468635_2296674237258053_4271826308561895424_o.jpg

Veni, Vidi, Posti
LX190, Primavera
Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 6155
Location: New Zealand
Thu Jan 30, 2020 11:49 pm quote
It's a start
Has anyone ever converted their Vespa to drillium?
Ossessionato
LXV 150 3v ie. Midnight Blue (Sold)
Joined: 06 Dec 2010
Posts: 3131
Location: Bangkok
Fri Jan 31, 2020 12:24 am quote
Paul G. wrote:
waspmike wrote:
...Was it the Chevy Nova with a big block where one had to jack the engine up to change the plugs on one bank? Or was it a Pontiac?
Chevy Cavalier V6. They took a motor designed for longitudinal installation, turned it sideways, crammed it into a compact engine bay.

Nobody noticed an issue until the cars started coming in for their first plug change. They had to change the plugs for free for the life of the car.
That's funny as I almost bought an X-11.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 7915
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Fri Jan 31, 2020 6:23 am quote
Paul G. wrote:
waspmike wrote:
...Was it the Chevy Nova with a big block where one had to jack the engine up to change the plugs on one bank? Or was it a Pontiac?
Chevy Cavalier V6. They took a motor designed for longitudinal installation, turned it sideways, crammed it into a compact engine bay.

Nobody noticed an issue until the cars started coming in for their first plug change. They had to change the plugs for free for the life of the car.
That part about changing plugs for free is a wife's tail. Heard that story many times at the dealership.
Never changed a set for free
Hooked
bv350, Brutale 910
Joined: 19 Jan 2011
Posts: 316
Location: LA CA
Fri Jan 31, 2020 8:43 am quote
Yíall made it sound like this is ridiculously hard.

second pic 7:27pm (broken plug cap obviously, thanks to you all I had a spare ready)

first pic 7:47pm. If I hadnít broken the plug cap this wouldíve taken less than 10min.

The only tip is to use a 5/8Ē(16mm) spark plug socket with a flex joint and the plug came out immediately. The OE tool looked useless.

Thanks for everyone for the lols.

381CA7D0-D40B-45D9-8D5A-FD072FBCCBAE.jpeg

IMG_5085.jpg

Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: 11 Jun 2011
Posts: 2380
Location: Starfleet Command Engineering, Southern UK HQ,
Fri Jan 31, 2020 2:13 pm quote
Attila wrote:
Ever tried to change the spark plugs on the T Max ..?
Having a special tool is not enough, it also takes experience to make contortions ...
Yes, all versions of the T-Max. It's an ok bike to work on even for the diy'er.
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