I have a brand new very old Piaggio MP3
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Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Sat Jun 13, 2020 4:30 pm quote
I have just become the owner of a 2008 Piaggio MP3 that has been in storage and never ridden. How do I get it in shape to ride?
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Sat Jun 13, 2020 5:04 pm quote
A good start would be to replace all fluids and filters and perform the critical 1K service, i.e. adjust and lubricate headstock bearings.
Hooked
50cc Beo, BigBeo
Joined: 30 May 2015
Posts: 211
Location: Chelyabinsk, Russia
Sun Jun 14, 2020 2:39 am quote
Also you could wish to replace as many rubber parts as possible: from tires to hoses and manifolds.
Hooked
2009 MP3 400
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 188
Location: Sayre, PA
Sun Jun 14, 2020 3:30 am quote
Absolutely new fluids all around. Grease those steering bearings. New battery. Should probably get a new drive belt on order. Check the date code on the tires. If they are original they should be replaced sooner rather than later. Fresh fuel?

If it was stored well and it looks decent then all the metal and plastic parts should be fine.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Sun Jun 14, 2020 4:04 am quote
Thank you all so much!

The bike has been in a closed garage in Tuscon Az (dry warm atmosphere) so it is in really nice condition. I downloaded a shop manual for it and am going to start draining fluids today.

Engine oil
Hub oil
Brake Fluid
Coolant

I am having a little trouble figuring out what oil/brake fluid/coolant to replace everything with, if anyone has suggestions that would be great.

I was also told to spay some Magic engine oil into the cylinders and let that sit for a couple of days to penetrate the cylinder walls. then after all the above, hand crank the engine a few times before turning it over with the starter.

20200614_065815.jpg

Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Sun Jun 14, 2020 6:04 am quote
Don't forget to replace the fluid in the tilt lock system. Being a beginner, only evacuate the reservoir and refill with fresh DOT4.

As for engine oil, any quality brand will do as long as it is a 5W-40 that has a JASO MA or MA2 certification. In other words, a motorcycle oil and not a car engine oil. I use BMW motorcycle or Eni oil depending on availability.

Before cranking over for the first time, I would add a couple of ounces worth of Marvel Mystery Oil through the spark plug hole to let it penetrate and lube the piston rings a couple of days ahead.

Brake fluid, any brand with DOT4 certification is ok to use. Same stuff as the tilt lock fluid.

Coolant, a G12 or G12+ spec coolant is fine. I use genuine VW/Audi coolant that is already premixed 50/50 with distilled water. Do not use tap water in these engines, or any engine for that matter.

Hub oil, 80W-90 from any reputable brand will do. I use Repsol.

Lastly, don't forget to wash out and reoil the air filter with the appropriate foam filter oil spray. Your bike sat for so long that not oiling it would be the equivalent as riding without a filter. Wash out the foam filter with hot soapy water and let it air dry. Then spray the filter oil onto the foam pad. Only spray a couple of coats. The filter must not be saturated or dripping with oil as that will cause problems.

If in doubt, just buy a new Piaggio air filter. They're dirt cheap and come pre-oiled ready to go. Also buy a new Piaggio engine oil strainer element + oil filter and the corresponding O ring.

Tip: Don't let the bike stand for extended periods on its tilt lock in order to minimize wear and tear on the hydraulic system. If you're parking the bike for more than a couple of hours, just put it on its centre stand and unlock the tilt.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
MP3 500, GTS 250 (both 2008 MY), 2012 Honda NC700 DCT
Joined: 02 Mar 2013
Posts: 5997
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Sun Jun 14, 2020 6:41 am quote
Good point about the air filter. They are also prone to just disintegrating over long periods, or you may find a mouse has made a home....
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Sun Jun 14, 2020 11:53 am quote
Thanks for all the good information!!!

I have run into my first snag. I can't find the drain bolt for the hub oil. I have looked at youtube and one person said it was a 6mm allen bolt. I found several allen bolts down there, but they are for the case.

Have you guys got any ideas?

Thanks
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Sun Jun 14, 2020 12:06 pm quote
Before you start turning the first wrench, search/download both the owner's manual and the factory service manual for your specific year and model.

One will help you get acquainted with the bike, including minor self service info and diagrams.

The other will help you actually repair the bike from head to toe.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Sun Jun 14, 2020 12:32 pm quote
WOW... that was interesting. I found it.
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Sun Jun 14, 2020 12:35 pm quote
Don't drain the hub oil unless you have a new crush washer to replace on the drain bolt.

More importantly, make sure you can remove the fill plug before draining.
Ossessionato
Gilera Fuoco 500ie
Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 4170
Location: Netherlands Olst
Sun Jun 14, 2020 12:47 pm quote
the fillplug is the dipstick
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Sun Jun 14, 2020 2:00 pm quote
Maksor wrote:
the fillplug is the dipstick
Which can break quite easily.

Manuals here:

https://manuals.wotmeworry.org.uk/Piaggio/Piaggio%20MP3/
Enthusiast
Piaggio MP3 ie 400
Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Posts: 65
Location: Sydney
Sun Jun 14, 2020 3:18 pm quote
Re: I have a brand new very old Piaggio MP3
SrWalterR wrote:
I have just become the owner of a 2008 Piaggio MP3 that has been in storage and never ridden. How do I get it in shape to ride?
If I were you, I would drop it off at a dealership and ask them to do what is required, you are getting results here, which is good, but if something is missed and you ride it, it is your life that you lose, no one else's.
This is what I would do, after this first checkup/service, I will start working on it myself as I have a fresh new start! Also, I saw the picture, it nice and good luck.
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Sun Jun 14, 2020 4:18 pm quote
And I would be the opposite. Replace oil, coolant, tyres, brake fluid (but leave the tilt-lock alone for now). I wouldn't even bother with the oil filter. Then ride it. A few hundred miles down the road, change the oil again and replace the filter this time. Other bits of rubber and the tilt-lock fluid can wait a bit longer, they're not essential.

Get hold of one of the 'grease bolts' that help fully flood the steering tubes with grease, and that should ensure the notch stays away for a very long time.
Member
2016 Mp3 500ie Sport
Joined: 28 Jul 2019
Posts: 28
Location: California
Sun Jun 14, 2020 7:54 pm quote
Filter Oil?
Hello
Is there a good brand or feature to look for when shopping for "Foam Filter Oil Spray"?

I just this weekend installed a "Malossi Double Foam Air" for my Mp3 to replace a rotted foam filter that was long over-due for replacement. With the new filter the bike feels like its got more power, acceleration, and idles better. All good.

But Filter Oil? Thats a new one on the shopping list for the bike.

I checked CycleGear and they have several brands in-stock that say "foam filter oil". Are there any other features to look for?

Learning allot about maintaining my Mp3 from this thread.

Thank you

Pinhead.
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:56 am quote
I think Maxima is a good brand and IIRC they also make a foam filter spray. Do not run any foam filter without oiling it. Otherwise, you are not filtering anything. The oil is what traps the dirt in the filter.

Vespa Motorsport in San Diego sells it along with other Maxima lubes, coolant, grease, etc.

Since you're doing a mini restoration, they might be the best place to get your project done as quickly as possible. They're probably the biggest MP3 dealer in the US, or at least they seem to carry the most MP3 parts in stock.

Since your bike sat in Arizona, consider that anything rubber & foam is probably dry rotted by now due to the heat, age, etc.

https://www.scooterwest.com/air-filter-oil-spray-on-type-fab-1-oilairfilter.html
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
Joined: 29 Mar 2008
Posts: 21604
Location: Harriman, Tennessee, Tn
Mon Jun 15, 2020 1:44 pm quote
use foam filter oil/spray VERY SPARINGLY. just a very light mist /coat is fine. your not racing a dirt bike in the desert.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Mon Jun 15, 2020 3:33 pm quote
Thanks for all the great help!

I am having trouble finding the tilt lock fluid reservoir. I pulled off the front panel as one you tube video said that is where it is at, but still do not see it.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Mon Jun 15, 2020 3:35 pm quote
Hit submit to quick on that last on. Does anyone know what oil is used for the tilt lock? I have scanned both the user manual and the shop manual and cannot find anything.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
MP3 500, GTS 250 (both 2008 MY), 2012 Honda NC700 DCT
Joined: 02 Mar 2013
Posts: 5997
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Mon Jun 15, 2020 3:38 pm quote
SrWalterR wrote:
Hit submit to quick on that last on. Does anyone know what oil is used for the tilt lock? I have scanned both the user manual and the shop manual and cannot find anything.
DOT4 brake fluid in tilt lock.
Hooked
2009 MP3 400
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 188
Location: Sayre, PA
Tue Jun 16, 2020 2:18 am quote
The tilt-lock reservoir is near the right headlight.

You need to remove the Y shaped piece around the windscreen. There is a screw under the piaggio badge and the rest pulls up gently. Then windscreen, and the dashboard cover.
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:56 am quote
Since you are new to the MP3, leave the tilt lock alone for now and do the other fluids first.

The tilt lock can be a curse to deal with should air make its way into the system during a fluid flush.
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Tue Jun 16, 2020 8:09 am quote
pmatulew wrote:
The tilt-lock reservoir is near the right headlight.
Surely it's near the LEFT headlight? Right and left on any vehicle are referred to as if sitting in the drivers seat.
Hooked
2009 MP3 400
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 188
Location: Sayre, PA
Tue Jun 16, 2020 8:48 am quote
Right side headlight.

Left side space is taken up by the engine coolant reservoir. There is an access panel on the left side of the dashboard to access that.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 8501
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:14 am quote
jimc wrote:
pmatulew wrote:
The tilt-lock reservoir is near the right headlight.
Surely it's near the LEFT headlight? Right and left on any vehicle are referred to as if sitting in the drivers seat.
Yep Jim it is on the right hand side. The coolant reservoir is on the left.
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Tue Jun 16, 2020 12:42 pm quote
WEB-Tech wrote:
jimc wrote:
pmatulew wrote:
The tilt-lock reservoir is near the right headlight.
Surely it's near the LEFT headlight? Right and left on any vehicle are referred to as if sitting in the drivers seat.
Yep Jim it is on the right hand side. The coolant reservoir is on the left.
My apologies - my memory must be in mirror image!
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 8501
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:26 pm quote
jimc wrote:
WEB-Tech wrote:
jimc wrote:
pmatulew wrote:
The tilt-lock reservoir is near the right headlight.
Surely it's near the LEFT headlight? Right and left on any vehicle are referred to as if sitting in the drivers seat.
Yep Jim it is on the right hand side. The coolant reservoir is on the left.
My apologies - my memory must be in mirror image!
Hey, I'm only 60 and I bet you have better memory than me
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:04 am quote
OK
I have:
Replaced the oil filter, oil screen, Screen o-ring, plug o-ring and refilled with new oil
Drained the hub oil, replaced the crush washer, filled.
Bled all the brake fluid on front and back brakes until clear.
Sucked the brake fluid out of the tilt lock reservoir and filled with new. I did not bleed it (see below).
Put 3cc of mystery oil (weird stuff) into the cylinder and it has sat for two days.
Flushed/replaced the coolant (need to bleed after I start the bike up).
Pumped some small amount of remaining gas out of the tank. That worries me as I do not know the condition of the gas filter.

Other stuff:
I am still waiting for the grease bolt ($30 which is ridiculous) to lube the tilt system.
I decided not to bleed the tilt lock. I did find what seems like a reasonable procedure by disconnecting the mater cylinder and pumping from there, but the linkage was most of the way down already (is the tile lock on?) so I think I will wait on that.
New battery is due Friday so no starting until then.

I plan to manually turn the engine over manually today just to see what that is like. Any ideas on how to do that would be appreciated.

Anyway, Love all the help - you folks are great!
Also, as always, any more ideas would be appreciated.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:05 am quote
Sorry, forgot abut the air filter. I cleaned it and re-oiled it and it is reinstalled.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:07 am quote
One more question:
What type of gas should I use and should I put an additive in it. The Mystery Oil says I should add a little of that but I am a little skeptical.
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:08 am quote
P.S. to WEB-Tech, I am 67 and can't remember my wife's name most of the times...
Hooked
2009 MP3 400
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Posts: 188
Location: Sayre, PA
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:15 am quote
Gas = premium unleaded. No need for an additive. Get it running and see how it behaves. Maybe injector cleaner later if necessary.
Fuel filter = might as well leave it for now so it can suck up any crud in the tank before you replace it with a new one.
Coolant bleed = Yes very important once the engine is running.
Tilt-lock bleed = Not sure which disconnect method you're referring to. Best way is "reverse bleed" basically involves pushing fluid from the bottom up.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
MP3 500, GTS 250 (both 2008 MY), 2012 Honda NC700 DCT
Joined: 02 Mar 2013
Posts: 5997
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:18 am quote
You can manually turn the crank.
Take off the transmission cover and it's right there for you.
Under the variator. But you should be able to turn the crank with the variator nut. Just go the right direction....
Member
Piaggio MP3
Joined: 13 Jun 2020
Posts: 15
Location: Kansas City
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:35 am quote
Hi Madison Sully, I figure the "right direction" is counter clockwise when looking at the variator nut?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
MP3 500, GTS 250 (both 2008 MY), 2012 Honda NC700 DCT
Joined: 02 Mar 2013
Posts: 5997
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:47 am quote
SrWalterR wrote:
Hi Madison Sully, I figure the "right direction" is counter clockwise when looking at the variator nut?
Yessir.
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:06 am quote
There shouldn't be any crud in the tank, and the fuel filter is part of the pump anyway. It'll be fine, though you can add a small amount of MMO to the fuel if it makes you feel better.
Hooked
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
Joined: 29 Oct 2019
Posts: 209
Location: Belgium
Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:37 am quote
In regards to the coolant bleed, make sure you loosen the needle valve inside the head while refilling and the engine running.

Not doing so will cause a air bubble and cause severe damage.

In other words, leave the bleeder valve open until coolant comes out without any bubbles.

Summary: these engines are not self bleeding.
Moderaptor
The Hornet (GT200, aka Love Bug) and 'Dimples' - a GTS 300
Joined: 26 Aug 2007
Posts: 38571
Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:47 am quote
sbaert wrote:
In regards to the coolant bleed, make sure you loosen the needle valve inside the head while refilling and the engine running.

Not doing so will cause a air bubble and cause severe damage.

In other words, leave the bleeder valve open until coolant comes out without any bubbles.

Summary: these engines are not self bleeding.
And BE VERY GENTLE re-seating the needle valve. It only takes 3 Nm - that's 26 lb-in or 2.2 lb-ft. Any more and you either be buying a new thermostat housing or drilling and tapping the damaged one to fit some other screw in. BTDTGTTS...
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 8501
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:11 am quote
For flushing the tilt lock, get a 60cc or 100cc syringe and some tubing. Fill syringe with brake fluid, connect tubing to one of the bleed screw on tilt lock solenoid by the front shocks and push the fluid up from there to the master cylinder, repeat on other side.
Don't forget to suck the fluid out of the master cylinder first.
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