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hi all new old 2008 mp3 400 with almost zero miles. Maybe someone could list a few trouble areas to look for when getting an old but unused bike back on the road. I have changed the oil and am about to change coolant but not sure I can look at other areas without setting off an alarm or disabling bike as the master key I discovered is lost and will be needed to make new keys or to turn off alarms. This bike is disturbingly complicated for me as I am used to really simple 2 stroke 50s with no real gizmos involved. Thanks if you have any things to be considered before I ruin the bike.
nearest service facility is 40 miles away
nearest service facility is 40 miles away
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Molto Verboso
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
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Molto Verboso
2015 MP3 500 ie Business
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Steering head bearings. They are the Achilles heel of the MP3. Get the special tool and grease them with every oil change or ideally every 5K km/3K mi

Also change all fluids and filters. Use G12 spec coolant (VW/Audi pink stuff)

And be careful bleeding the coolant system. Loosen the bleeder valve during the bleeding process, otherwise you will have a airpocket that will overhead/destroy the head of the motor.
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thank you for fast reply. I will look for that grease gun online. and the air pocket warning will be kept in mind. it is fun to ride but I am going to get spare keys made before I lose the original. the code card was found just now and I am hoping the 'master key' can be replaced. I put it on the center stand on a soggy dirt patch and it fell over surprisingly easy to lift back up. no damage.
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Molto Verboso
2022 Liberty 150S-"Meg"
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BuddyBoy wrote:
thank you for fast reply. I will look for that grease gun online. and the air pocket warning will be kept in mind. it is fun to ride but I am going to get spare keys made before I lose the original. the code card was found just now and I am hoping the 'master key' can be replaced. I put it on the center stand on a soggy dirt patch and it fell over surprisingly easy to lift back up. no damage.
Lock the front suspension when you stop/park it. Shouldn't be able to fall over then.
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Enthusiast
2009 mp3
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2009 mp3
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Any strange electrical faults you need to check the fuses. Strange system with a master fuse feeding multiple sub fuses which are inclined to suffer from dirt and corrosion.
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yes not a great start but at least I got it off the truck without it killing me! Clap emoticon I am finding out a lot about the wheel lock and how its two separate components, hydraulic and mechanical, work together. pretty sophisticated unless of course you don't use it. anyone know if a 'master key' can be made with only the code card and the secondary key? I assume this happens a lot with people losing this master key because it is not used except for dealer maintenance. I'm sure there are pros and cons to this system. I'll have to read up on this some more. thanks.
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I highly recommend changing the brake fluid in both the brakes and tilt lock system.
I had found the brake fluid in the tilt lock had turned to gel in the spring (?) locks.
Check your tilt lock pressure switch for leakage too.
I discovered the small water pump nippel is frail too. I broke mine very easily. I have an aluminum water pump cover coming from Europe

Enjoy the machine, they are weird and wonderful
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2020 MP3 500 HPE Sport ABS/ASR
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2020 MP3 500 HPE Sport ABS/ASR
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25BIKEZ wrote:
Lock the front suspension when you stop/park it. Shouldn't be able to fall over then.
I had a 2008 MP3 400 for 12 years / 40,000 miles and never used the center stand, only the tilt lock.

The only problem was the (I think it's a solenoid) valve developed a leak causing the scooter to slowly lean over when parked. It was a simple, inexpensive fix.
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sbaert wrote:
Steering head bearings. They are the Achilles heel of the MP3. Get the special tool and grease them with every oil change or ideally every 5K km/3K mi

Also change all fluids and filters. Use G12 spec coolant (VW/Audi pink stuff)

And be careful bleeding the coolant system. Loosen the bleeder valve during the bleeding process, otherwise you will have a airpocket that will overhead/destroy the head of the motor.
so I located the special grease fittings/ bolts that I will order this weekend I hope. I will tackle the coolant system flush next as i saw a vid that explained how piaggio coolant will allow rust after a few years and destroy the engine. also, when I test rode it, only went a mile or so and the radiator fan came on even with it being 45 degrees out and it seemed like it should turn off after another half mile. will check coolant level again. maybe huge bubble in there. no more rides for now til coolant checked. will get to brake fluid then but I wish there were more vids online that showed these procedures. not sure how to change the tilt lock system but since its brake fluid its time to change. not leaking tho so will get to it when I find a vid.thanks everyone for your replies. I recently inherited 4 scooters that need work as well, Facepalm emoticon most not running for several years. Now have 8 in the herd. always need a back up.
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just a quick question. anyone know where the front suspension grease fittings can be bought for a decent price? scooterwest wants 24 dollars plus shipping each. seems a little steep.
https://www.scooterwest.com/tool-for-lubricating-mp3-fork-bearings-020943y-ia.html

I know its an imported hard to find kind of thing and all. seems a bit much Im here in the united states. thanks. nearest service place is 40 miles. Headache emoticon but i will pay it to save headaches down the road.

flying carl
'I discovered the small water pump nippel is frail too. I broke mine very easily. I have an aluminum water pump cover coming from Europe '

is this the nipple used to bleed the water system? thanks.
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Veni, Vidi, Posti
2007 GTS
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2007 GTS
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BuddyBoy wrote:
just a quick question. anyone know where the front suspension grease fittings can be bought for a decent price? scooterwest wants 24 dollars plus shipping each. seems a little steep.
https://www.scooterwest.com/tool-for-lubricating-mp3-fork-bearings-020943y-ia.html

I know its an imported hard to find kind of thing and all. seems a bit much Im here in the united states. thanks. nearest service place is 40 miles. Headache emoticon but i will pay it to save headaches down the road.

flying carl
'I discovered the small water pump nippel is frail too. I broke mine very easily. I have an aluminum water pump cover coming from Europe '

is this the nipple used to bleed the water system? thanks.
you only need 1 grease fitting bolt.
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External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

thats one fitting per side, right? I dont need to loosen the bottom bolt and grease that area? I just want to get the right number of grease fittings when I order. thank you. The bike is shoved back into a corner of the garage and it would be difficult to go check without dragging it out. I need to clear out my garage obviously.
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2007 MP3 250ie / 2022 MP3 500HPE SA
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BuddyBoy wrote:
External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

thats one fitting per side, right? I dont need to loosen the bottom bolt and grease that area? I just want to get the right number of grease fittings when I order. thank you. The bike is shoved back into a corner of the garage and it would be difficult to go check without dragging it out. I need to clear out my garage obviously.
Hi, read the Piaggio instructions (search for the TECHNICAL BULLETIN No. 012-2012 from 24-04-2012). The basic idea is remove the old bolds one by one, place the special grease bold, grease and remove and put the regular bold in place again, so you need only one grease bold and use it 4 times (one time in each place)
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Vespa GTS 300
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BuddyBoy wrote:
anyone know if a 'master key' can be made with only the code card and the secondary key? I assume this happens a lot with people losing this master key because it is not used except for dealer maintenance.
I'm not familiar with the MP3's keys, but if it's comparable to the Piaggio/Vespa scooters then:

You can't create a new masterkey (this has the task to be able to teach further keys), but a good locksmith can make a copy/clone of the blue key (without having the masterkey). Creating a new master key is only possible with a new/reset ECU (the first learned key is always the respective master key).

You can find suitable Piaggio key blanks in the large online stores.
⚠️ Last edited by GermanGTSDriver on UTC; edited 1 time
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thank you all who have been following. dariusz I am up to date on how the grease thing works on the front 4 fittings. next question is Can i just buy grease fittings and leave them in for all 4 of the bolts/fittings? seems like a waste of time to keep taking them out and replacing them after each grease job, which is an annual thing at least. are the grease fittings subject to failure? I think i will try just leaving them in and keep an eye on leakage/seepage of grease if any appears. It can't be too difficult to look for grease after every couple rides. Thanks again for input and manual referral.

german gts I will check with a locksmith on a key backup. I am sure they can handle a copy. just wish the car dealer that sold this to me had let me know but I probably would have bought it anyway. this thing is a lot quicker than the 250 i test rode couple years ago.

flyingcarl-I found the bleed valve for water pump. thank you and will report if bleed and water flush is success.
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BuddyBoy wrote:
Can i just buy grease fittings and leave them in for all 4 of the bolts/fittings? seems like a waste of time to keep taking them out and replacing them after each grease job, which is an annual thing at least. are the grease fittings subject to failure? I think i will try just leaving them in and keep an eye on leakage/seepage of grease if any appears. It can't be too difficult to look for grease after every couple rides. Thanks again for input and manual referral.
From what I read, is not recommended leave the screws with grease fittings on, since the hollow ones are much weaker than the normal ones (which makes sense). Even in the manual they indicate that the screws with grease fittings needs to be only adjusted and are not tightened, and the normal screws do have a specific torque.
Now the other side of the coin. There are several people who say they have left them on and have had no problems.
In my case I would not risk a failure of any of these screws.
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Quote:
From what I read, is not recommended leave the screws with grease fittings on, since the hollow ones are much weaker than the normal ones (which makes sense)
If such is the case, do we actually need the grease bolts? Could we just remove normal bolt, stick a tube in the hole to fill it with grease, and then replace the original bolt? The idea being the pressure of the bolt pushing down on the grease blob would spread it around the joint like the special bolt would.

Does it have something to do with how much grease actually gets into the joint and efficiency of spreading it around?

The bolts expensive but I'll gladly buy it if the value add is indeed worth it.

Thanks
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pinheadh78 wrote:
If such is the case, do we actually need the grease bolts? Could we just remove normal bolt, stick a tube in the hole to fill it with grease, and then replace the original bolt?
The grease bolt make things "cleaner" and avoid other particles goes inside (in example small sand, etc) and the job is easy to control what is happening. And as I say before, you only need one and use it four times, every service
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Piaggio MP3 ie 400 (RIP)
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I would not have recommended to buy it, with age there will be lots of problems and these types of scooters are expensive, as you will find few mechanics that work on them. I had one (400ie, 2009) and the mechanic used to work on it, informed me that he does not anymore and recommended to take to other, as it takes too much time to take it apart and put it back on. Then it started dying by itself: it used to stop while I'm riding, and one mechanic told me that is with the electrical issues and you need to test it from time to time (costly to do), and although I was sad to see it get written off (maybe lucky with that, I had an accident), but it was good that I changed it. I would recommend to stay at least 6 or 7 years old scooters, not older. But good luck with it. They are good machine (I don't want anyone thinking I am bad mouthing them).
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I bought a 2008 MP3 500 as a project, and over a period of months did much as you are doing, learning how to do all the maintenance myself. There are many systems that are not similar to other scooters. I found that the most useful thing to do was to strip off all the plastic body covers and prepare to simply leave them off until you are satisfied you have done everything you plan.

There are several specialists who can help you with what must be done to get a master key. I would call either AF1Racing in Austin, TX or ScooterWest (Vespa Motorsport) in San Diego, CA. Make sure you tell them you have the card.

The FSM is available free online from various sources. Start Googling. The same machines are also called Gilera Fuoco and either manual will be very helpful.
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went west, I will take off the panels as I go and just leave them off til I get acquainted with the innards on this bike. It is not critical that I ride this before I know that it is ready. Will check on the master key soon. thanks. Always wanted one of these and now I have a little disposable money for something new.

abcdef, I appreciate your caution in this but if it doesn't work out it is ok. I'd rather try something new than get stuck in the rut I've been in for a while. This forum has some excellent members who are very helpful.
Besides, this thing is a blast to ride. The roads around here really are from hell so the extra traction is nice.
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I forgot to mention that there is a hidden fuse where the plastic connector links the low tension wiring to the starter solenoid.
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