30 October 2008

Faux pod mod

We love the look of the side pods on our classic Vespas and decided to create this look on our ET8s. Angelle had done a similar mod to this on her Yamaha Vino 125 in Canada a couple years ago using chrome autobody trim. We weren't able to find any of the same product she used back then, but decided pinstriping would work to create the desired effect.

The big decision was what colour and width of pin striping to choose? We wanted something that would suit both our scoots and wouldn't be overly ostentatious.
Angelle pondered over 3 different choices for the pinstriping as Simon spent time browsing the other auto accessories.

We decided fuzzy dice wouldn't really work on the scooters even if they are super cool.

In the end, we chose 6mm chrome finish pinstriping to create the faux pods on our scoots.

Before applying the pinstriping, it was inspected for flaws.

Simon was really keen to get going on modding JC out, so he washed and dried the scooter thoroughly.

The pinstriping needs to be carefully applied along the contour of the bike where you'd like the pod to stand out.

Extreme concentration is required at this stage to make sure the pinstriping is smooth and straight.

We found a heat gun and heat resistant spatula were very good in helping to smooth around the sharp curves at the front of the pod.

The look from the front of the pod.

And this is how we finished off the back.

Of course, this procedure was repeated on the other side of the bike and other bits and bobs were added for an overall classy effect.

26 October 2008

Best intentions

The weeks have been rushing quickly past. Our best intentions of getting out on the scooters and blogging about it thwarted by weather and work. It is spring in New Zealand and it has been rainy and windy here lately. The rain is great for the gardens, but not so much for fair-weather scooterists. While some people may think traveling for their job is a perk, Angelle tends to disagree as it takes her away from her favorite things. Simon's not having to travel at all for work (by this we mean living on the same property you work from) can also have it's disadvantages in that people expect him to be available any time they need him.
Yesterday we did manage a jaunt to Helensville between rain showers to return a library book. On the way back, zipped around some of the residential streets of Helensville and stopped by "Not An Ordinary Junk Shop" (it truly isn't an ordinary junk shop in that they don't seem to actually want to sell anything...). The guy at the shop came out and had a yarn about the Vespas he used to ride in the 60's and 70's and then he went off on a tangent about a guy in Rotorua who had a huge garage filled with Bajaj parts. Our last stop on the way home was at the local park where a small Hot Rod show was taking place. We hadn't known about the show beforehand so it was a nice surprise even if we were just seeing the tail end of everything. Simon's favorite car was a grey 1949 Coupe Cadillac and Angelle reckoned she'd still rather drive around in a new or vintage Bambina!

18 October 2008

Vespa is Italian for wasp

Photo by Angelle 18/10/2008

Not much to blog about this past week. Neither of us have had much time to scoot. Simon made a short journey to Helensville on JC to run some errands during the week but that was the only ride.
Angelle has been in New Zealand's "Art Deco City" Napier since Sunday - just arrived back last night, Friday, around 8:30pm. There weren't many scooters to take note of in Napier; Angelle only saw one Chinese 50cc retro styled scoot at one of the sites where she was working. With the gorgeous weather and scenery in Napier you would expect to see some scoots zooming around, so this was surprising. Hopefully the two of us can get to Napier with our scooters sometime this summer to rip around and get some stories and photos for you all.

11 October 2008

Did you come all the way from Parakai on those?

That was the question from the cook at our favorite "diner" this morning when he passed us getting back on our bikes after breakfast (he had just run over to the market to pick up some fresh pumpkin). The Waimauku Food Station is what we would call a hidden gem. We started going there for the way above average pies and kept on when we realized that although they are not the fanciest place around, they do the best breakfasts (this morning breakfast was Texan Omelet with Mash and Bacon for Simon and Smoked Fish Cakes with Poached Eggs and Organic Greens for Angelle). The cook is a really friendly guy and has spoken with us on many occasions about the changes happening all around us in our rural area. Today he asked us about the bikes a bit and reminisced about "playing on one of those things" when he was about 15.
The young girl behind the counter who took our order this morning was also intrigued by the bikes...And Angelle's hot pink jacket (she seemed disappointed when told the jacket was a several year old find from Canada). She wondered how fast the scooters could go and if you could ride them with your Learner's License. What sorts of things do people ask you about your scooter? Back in Canada, Angelle often had people asking her "how much" for her 50cc Honda Jazz...
So, back to that question, "did you come all the way from Parakai on those?" The answer, of course! The ride from Parakai to Waimauku was about 20 mins tops. The road is fairly well maintained as it gets moderately heavy use. Today would have been the busiest traffic we have faced so far but we seemed to get respect from almost all the other road users and were passed courteously by the "cagers". Other motorcyclists on the road were friendly as well, giving us enough space if they needed to pass and many a nod/wave/smile.

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07 October 2008

Mental Health Awareness Week

This week is Mental Health Awareness week. We have some ideas that may help you improve your own mental health this week!

Start a journal:

Have a drink with friends:

Wear something pretty:

And our favorite way to improve our own mental health? Doing something that makes us smile like RIDING OUR SCOOTERS :)

05 October 2008

The A-Z of Classic Scooters

We got our hands on a copy of this book several months ago. It really is a comprehensive guide to "all" makes and models of classic scooter. There are over 300 scooters listed with many one-offs that you are not likely to have heard of before. The journey through the book is alphabetical and the photographs are wonderful. We noticed some irregularities in the grammar and a tendency towards bitterness for American, English and German bikes but put that down to the fact that the author is French. We enjoyed this book as much for the eye candy photos as for the writing and would recommend it to anyone interested in the inception of scooters and classic scooters. You are sure to find a copy on http://www.amazon.com :)

04 October 2008

New Addition and Back to the Beach

Both of us love scooters. That much is obvious. We started collecting them soon after we got together starting with Simon's dad's old Maicoletta that we rescued from the garden shed. Shortly after we snapped up a vintage Triumph Tigress but decided it wasn't for us and sold it very quickly. The Tigress ended up being replaced by a bin of parts to produce another Maicoletta. We then bought a pair of vintage Vespa Supers that had been imported from Bali (we think...), one in a creamy white that was dubbed "The Colonel" and the other in robin's egg blue. All these vintage and classic scooters are amazing and we loved them all. But alas, none of them were road legal. We decided we needed some scooters that we could ride. The Colonel was listed on trademe and we started looking. We bought the blue ET8 you all met in our last post and fixed it up and found out how great it is to ride without any pomp, circumstance, or hassle. We decided we definately needed another.
The second ET8 showed up just this week. We bought it from a lovely die hard Christian lady named Karen who had taken wonderful care of it. Despite the relatively high milage, the scooter is in great mechanical and body condition and totally warranted and registered.

There was a bit of what Karen called "sign writing" on the bike as you can see. One side pod directing you to read Galatians 2:20 and the other displaying the phrase "Jesus Wept". The top box was also covered in various religious bumper stickers. Since we will probably go with a different theme for any stickers or "sign writing" on the bike, Simon carefully removed the wording from the body and took off the top box which is to be replaced with a chrome rack matching the other bike. To honour where the bike has come from, we are for the moment calling it "JC".
Once we had some spare time, we decided to go out for a ride with both bikes. We went back to Shelley Beach since it was such a lovely ride last time and because we wanted to get some of the really awesome avacados that come from an orchard out that way.

Ready to Ride

View of Shelley Beach from a Vespa

Simon on his new scooter

Scenic shot of Simon and JC

Angelle with the bikes at Shelley Beach Store