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SilverWing 600-- 4nprevious Vespa
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Posts: 567
Location: chattanooga tn
 
Addicted
SilverWing 600-- 4nprevious Vespa
Joined: UTC
Posts: 567
Location: chattanooga tn
UTC quote
In May I will be 82----66 years riding, over 1.5 million 2 wheel miles, 15-20 countries, over 75 new bikes/scooters----thinking about quitting while I am still head? My 2019 Kymco XTown 300i for sale. Been great scooter, kinda heavy but doesn't break.

I feel, as degreed Safety Professional, old farts are safer on motorcycle with tank to grip, foot pegs to stand on. Vespas with upright sitting position, do allow some input from feet and legs! Feet forward probably not way to go---I am on 11th new Maxiscooter, so some experience here, over 400,000 miles with them.

Should I buy another scooter, Vespa will be considered but......not cheap, no or few dealers, 8,000 mile belt changes, are they as reliable as Japanese or other Asian? But like that I could make GTS buffet free, have front and rear luggage racks, do not like small gas tank/or having to raise seat to fuel, though.---lack of spare tire sucks, and difficult rear wheel removal not fun.

Do I wish to repeat any rides? Only Hyder AK---ride thru Rockies beautiful. 2014 rode to 49 states (Burgman 400, Suzuki TU250). Fun, but not cheap. Lived/rode/worked for over 40 years in Germany/Italy/Japan/Korea---enjoyed it. Got married at 65---so you know where my money goes now.

Maybe will look for PX just to have---I found 150 much more enjoyable than the 200. Just smoother.
@bob_copeland avatar
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2013 Vespa 300 Super, 2022 Kymco AK 550
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Posts: 3603
Location: Minneapolis USA
 
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@bob_copeland avatar
2013 Vespa 300 Super, 2022 Kymco AK 550
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3603
Location: Minneapolis USA
UTC quote
Congrats - Impressive Long Riding Career
John Grinsel,

Hats off to you. You definitely have had many a mile on the handle bars.

I bought a Vespa for the iconic classic look. Also, I have always thought,
the smaller the scooter the more fun it is to ride.

A member of my Maxi-Scooter riding group just decided to end his two wheel
adventure at age 83. He bought a Mazda Miata.

Best to you,

Bob Copeland
72 years old in Frost Bite Falls Minnesota
@attila avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
In garage: Yamaha Tricity 155 Urban 2019 - MV Agusta 125 RS 1956
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8291
Location: Latina (Italy)
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@attila avatar
In garage: Yamaha Tricity 155 Urban 2019 - MV Agusta 125 RS 1956
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8291
Location: Latina (Italy)
UTC quote
Heartfelt wishes John ...
I still wish you many years on a saddle.
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Addicted
Joined: UTC
Posts: 528
 
Addicted
Joined: UTC
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My dad rode a BMW R90S until he was 85. He sold it without telling me. I would've loved that bike.
@dooglas avatar
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Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
Joined: UTC
Posts: 13410
Location: Oregon City, OR
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@dooglas avatar
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
Joined: UTC
Posts: 13410
Location: Oregon City, OR
UTC quote
john grinsel wrote:
I feel, as degreed Safety Professional, old farts are safer on motorcycle with tank to grip, foot pegs to stand on. Vespas with upright sitting position, do allow some input from feet and legs! Feet forward probably not way to go---I am on 11th new Maxiscooter, so some experience here, over 400,000 miles with them.

Should I buy another scooter, Vespa will be considered but......not cheap, no or few dealers, 8,000 mile belt changes, are they as reliable as Japanese or other Asian? But like that I could make GTS buffet free, have front and rear luggage racks, do not like small gas tank/or having to raise seat to fuel, though.---lack of spare tire sucks, and difficult rear wheel removal not fun.
Dick Lemmon rode a GT/GTS Vespa into his 90s. He is my inspiration. My GTS is a comfortable ride, quite capable in a wide range of riding situations, and it has been quite reliable (as was its GTS predecessor).
@amateriat avatar
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2015 GTS 300 Super (Melody: 2015-2021, RIP), 2022 GTS SuperTech (Thelonica; bit the dust 02-22-23)
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Posts: 3924
Location: Asbury Park, NJ
 
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@amateriat avatar
2015 GTS 300 Super (Melody: 2015-2021, RIP), 2022 GTS SuperTech (Thelonica; bit the dust 02-22-23)
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3924
Location: Asbury Park, NJ
UTC quote
Re: 82nd birthday coming
john grinsel wrote:
In May I will be 82----66 years riding, over 1.5 million 2 wheel miles, 15-20 countries, over 75 new bikes/scooters----thinking about quitting while I am still head?
First things first: Hi, and congratulations on what to me seems one hell of a milestone. You could likely write a few books based on those many miles. (Not too late to consider that.)

Secondly: I guess it's a matter of "you'll know when you know" in terms of hanging up the helmet, gloves and boots. I rode nothing but off-road bikes in my callous (late-) youth, then didn't throw a leg over anything with two wheels and an engine until a little over five years ago-my very first road machine, at age 60. One of the best things I've ever done, and I want to do it for as long as reasonably possible.

The ride I chose, obviously, was a GTS 300 Super: it's agile, just fast-enough for the highway (look up my threads here covering my heavy highway use with the thing, warts and all), and, for me, that certain proverbial je ne sais quoi that simply does it for me, which no maxi, whatever other salient points they might possess, seems to have. I've had a few issues, but if I had it to do over again, I absolutely would, with this bike.

One other thing to remember in terms of scooters like this: they might not have a fuel tank to clamp one's knees around, but they have something most full-on mots seriously lack: a seriously-low center of gravity, making the bike more maneuverable/flickable at low-to-moderate speeds. At high speeds, it's not as rock-solid in a straight line under all conditions, but IMO it's not on the edge of control, even in crosswinds. (NOTE: This obviously depends on things like riding experience, your own tolerance levels, and so on.)
Today: From central New Jersey to Red Hook, Brooklyn: Quite the haul via highway, but one nice day for it.
Today: From central New Jersey to Red Hook, Brooklyn: Quite the haul via highway, but one nice day for it.
UTC

Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3766
Location: East Anglia, UK
 
Ossessionato
2016 Vespa GTS300ie abs/asr/ess Settantesimo '70'
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3766
Location: East Anglia, UK
UTC quote
Hello John, I know you from this site and of course Burgmanusa where I am Quantum Mechanic. We both had Burgman 400 maxis at the time.

I think you are far too young to hang up your helmet just yet. As long as you are reasonably physically fit, I see no reason to do that. So I'm glad to hear you are still looking for another bike, maybe a bit lighter.

In my riding group we have a 92 year old guy who only learned to ride when he was 72 yrs old. He has a Piaggio X9 250. He loves it.

On the point about the modern Vespas reliability. I would say there is no real difference between Japanese/Korean reliability and a Vespa. Things have moved on with Piaggio in that respect. My GTS is in it's 5th year with me. I bought it new and just love it. Like you I've had many years riding all sorts of bikes and scooter and most of them Japanese. Like you I've covered big mileages on them, often in excess of 30-40,000 miles a year when I was working. Hardly any issues with any of the Japanese bikes, and just one minor coolant leak from a hose where the factory hose clip had become loose on my Vespa GTS. Not a single other issue apart from that and it was an easy fix. The GTS is very easy to service and contrary to popular belief the rear wheel is easy to remove. I've even done it by the road side on one of our riding group outings when one of the guys got a pretty bad puncture. You only need basic tools to do this at a pinch. Obviously if doing the job at home a torque wrench is nice too. But anyone with some mechanical aptitude can do the job taking their time.

As you say, the Vespas are a bit pricey. But you do get what you pay for. They last and last and if you want to do high mileage on a GTS300, it's a pretty good choice, even if you take the wife!! Good luck John and why not try one of the new GTS300hpe bikes. You may get quite a shock.
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