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Thread: Scooter trips

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    1

    Default Scooter trips

    I'm contemplating a long, solo trip by scooter, and would be interested in reading about others' experiences on such trips. How many miles might I expect to cover in a day? Also, which scooter would be preferable, the new Vespa GTS 300, or the Piaggio BV 500, which has a larger engine and wheels for about the same price?

    If anyone else is interested in making such a scooter trip, I'd welcome the company.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    7,953

    Default Scooters are not Motorcycles

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    The Vespa has a 278cc, single cylinder engine developing all of 22 hp. The Piaggio ups those numbers to 460cc and 40 hp, again with a single cylinder. Neither of these machines is capable of true highway speeds, although the Piaggio claims a top end of 55 mph, and neither is a touring machine by any stretch of the imagination. These scooters are built for short commutes at moderate speeds. In trying to make a serious RoadTrip on such a vehicle, you will need to recognize that you will be grossly exceeding its design capabilities and will need to be ready to deal with any breakdown, even if terminal, wherever on your trip it happens.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Central Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,687

    Default A long day

    This comes up on the forums every now and again. I would think that taking a road trip on a scooter would have more in common with a bicycle trip than a trip by car. I wouldn't expect to make more than 100 miles in a day, and I think that may even be stretching it, due to a variety of factors, not the least of which would be the stress after the first day.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
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    7,393

    Default

    If you have some time, this may be an interesting read. Seems to me a scooter is a LOT more capable machine for a roadtrip than a moped.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    4,418

    Default The Alaska Highway

    Note that the link which glc posted is of a trip of 1978. The Alaska Highway is now completely paved, as are most other roads up north. Notable exceptions been the Denali Highway, the James W Dalton Highway and the Dempster Highway. They are really the only challenges left. All other roads up north are no different to travelling around the US.

    Lifey who saw many cyclists on the Alaska Highway

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    7,953

    Default It's not the Road, It's the Vehicle

    As you read through Walter's adventures, be sure to pay particular attention to the number of repairs he made, almost daily to keep his little vehicle going, and how much of his baggage is devoted to parts and tools. Mopeds and scooters are not your usual RoadTrip vehicles and trying to pretend they are because they are fun around town or because a few uniquely qualified individuals have pulled off substantial trips will simply get you in trouble.

    AZBuck

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Leeds, England
    Posts
    527

    Default If you do go ahead ...

    I'm not qualified to join in the suitability debate but there is what appears to be sound advice for long-distance scooter-based touring here on Vespa.org

    The list of recommended tools and spares at the foot of the page would certainly have me thinking twice but then I've never pulled a flywheel in my life.

    Peter

  8. #8

    Default

    I ride a Vespa GTS 250. It sits comfortably at 82mph and can go all day. I have taken many long-distance trips on my scooter. This past summer I rode from San Diego, CA to Prudhoe Bay, AK and camped most of the way. I followed that by riding from Vancouver, B.C. to Portland, ME. In all, it was about 12,000 miles in 56 days. (If it matters, I'm female and usually ride solo.) I am not "uniquely qualified" or mechanically gifted.

    My point is this: a scooter can take you anywhere you want to go.

    As far as choosing between the GTS 300 or the BV 500, I'd recommend you try to test ride each. The comfort and handling are different and only you can decide which fits best.

    It's true that a scooter is not a motorcycle. In my opinion it is much more comfortable to ride long distances on a scooter. 300 - 400 miles per day is quite common. More than 400 and I get a little stiff and need more frequent breaks to remain alert.

    Please don't let the nay-sayers discourage you. In my experience, the ones who say it can't be done are often the ones who haven't tried.

    Have fun and keep the shiny side up!

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