I know a lot of you were concerned about my motorized bicycle project when I first started posting about it. Correctly, you pointed out they’re expensive, unreliable, dangerous, and about the worst form of motorized two wheel transport. Being who I am I took this to heart and purchased a second one.
Oh that got you to click/ infiniscroll though? Excellent. Almost everything said in the first paragraph is true exceeeeept I didn’t buy the second one, my significant other bought one.
The original plan was that we’d buy and build motorized bikes together in tandem (though not a tandem motorized bike), but because of complicated adulting reasons I ended up building mine first. This turned out to be a good thing as it allowed mine to be held up as an example of what not to do.
However, some of you may have noted that this bike looks built. And dirty.
Indeed! Turns out some chap wiser than I was selling his on craigslist.
We turn up at this guy’s apartment to look at the bike. It was rather an odd moment because while both of us are well versed in buying
beaters cars from randos, neither of us had bought a bike in this fashion. We winged it.
Still, the bike looked better than I had in the photos and seemed to have just a whole shit ton of stuff bolted to it, which is great. Honestly there is well over the asking price in parts on this thing... which is good because it wouldn’t start and the tires were flat.
Turns out the owner bought it from a friend but has absolutely no mechanical aptitude nor, apparently, any interest in learning. He decided to sell it when it wouldn’t go up hills without dying.
After a little investigation we determined the problem was likely to be fuel delivery. There was gas in the tank, but only a tiny amount was coming through the filter. My best guess is the in-tank strainer is clogged, but we won’t know until the tank is pulled and cleaned.
The park plug wire boot has a crack in it, which probably means that while it may not need to be replaced immediately, it should be replaced soon.
The most obvious problem with the bike, however, is that it was assembled “backwards”. The donor bike had the grip shifter on the right grip. On a standard build the motorized bike shift goes on the right, but instead of swapping the shifter around the builder decided to just install the throttle backwards.
I guess it works? TBD, but we’ll probably fix that, if possible.
The bike also came with an honest-to-god 12V system. The builder saw fit to take the magneto “accessory” output and connect it to a solar charge controller, which acts as a voltage regulator. This charges a small 14V (?) battery located in the rear box and also runs USB accessories. Neat! Not something I’d waste the time and energy on, but as someone already did all the work, it could make for a useful system.
It also came with a box of parts, tools, lights, and even a helmet! Seriously a good deal considering how much all that crap costs.
Still, a deal was struck, money changed hands, and we loaded the bike up and headed home.
Also: fun fact! A motorized cruiser bike does not fit into a Land Rover Discovery. That was a fun ride home...
So what is to do on this thing?
Well first off we need to get it starting and driving normally. We’ll pull drain and pull the tank and figure out the fuel delivery issue. If that doesn’t solve it we’ll reseal the intake and check the carb for proper operation and/ or move through the standard troubleshooting list.
These are not complicated machines.
Next up would be the check and adjust the brakes, thought they seem fine, and fully air up the tires.
Then we’ll look at swapping the throttle and shifter to a more standard arrangement.
Also we’re thinking lose all three baskets, but keep the rear container, and add a spring chain tensioner. Oh and add a working kickstand! The one one it is useless.
After that, the hope would be that we’ll have a clean 2nd Tooty Scooty (or should I say Twoty Scooty?) for less than a quarter of what I paid for my build .
I’m maybe a little jealous!