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Feb 05

played around last week with my hasselblad. still figuring out how best to meter for this camera. i’ve been using an app on my phone but that seems a little too hit or miss for me. we had done this epic group shot that took about 15 minutes to setup but it didn’t turn out. i was using a cable release and I didn’t have it hold the shutter button down when i used the timer…so the rear “barn doors” were closed while the shutter on the lens opened…bummer. but at least i figured it out for next time


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1
Oct 10

gettin there! made a rear seat support bracket out of an old exercise bike seat post (thanks jordan) and have been welding my own projects finally (thanks for teaching me jordan).

things left to do:

-make top mounts for rear shocks and attach them
-cut head tube so forks fit properly
-find front fender
-paint general 5 star side covers
-get headlight situation figured out
-paint frame and subframe
-get gy6 rear variator on transmission (the toughest one by far, and financially may never happen)


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Aug 24

been riding my ciao a fair amount this summer. still got more tuning to do to get those last few mph out of it. my goal is to break 60 on it. right now it’s at 55.8 mph and i need to put in some heavier weights to make it variate more.

i rode to the farm i work at today to put the cash boxes from the holland farmer’s market and fulton street farmer’s market stands away. behind my ciao is brassicas 1, or at least what’s left of it (6 kinds of kale and 2 kinds of collard greens).

in other news i got this wacky giannelli excel pipe in the mail the other day. they made two versions of this pipe, one to fit a ciao and one to fit other vespa models. this one is made for ciao but also fits at least a SI, possibly more models. it’s pretty wildly shaped. the baffle mounts to the opposite side than usual.  the chamber looks smaller than my polini top one so I decided it should go on my friend, adam weiler’s, bike.

adam and his wife, jenna, run the screen printing extravaganza that is Ambrose  picked up this black and maroon vespa SI off craigslist. dude did a ton of work to it and I don’t think he ever got it running after he took it apart to put a malossi 70cc kit in a stock case. seemed like he knew what he was doing when it came to machining parts but not so much in the world of moped tuning. kit looked brand new.


dumbest thing about this moped is the carb. I think he bought some knock off 12:12 and it has this oil derrick style throttle top on it. SUPER complicated and equally SUPER annoying to work with. 


fortunately I have a spare olympia stock vespa carb top. problem solved! now all i need to is get a side stand and a decomp cable for this puppy and it’s gonna rip. and by rip I mean i’ll be able to finally start it and tune and it and when i’m tuning it i’ll be able to lean it on a sidestand instead of the wall…


it will rip though, it’s got a 64cc malossi kit.


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1
Aug 12
Not quite…

Not quite…


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2
Jun 17

remembering

i was working on this bike today and got me thinking about my wedding day.

remembering


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May 20

lazer top tankin’

finally got the ball rollin on frame hacking and welding so i can actually put the simo engine on a bike again. jordan and ben showed me their new warehouse shop (the old ghost rider’s shop) and we got down to business.

i’m using an old general 5 star frame (motor mounts were busted) and a bravo subframe for this bike.  i had cut the bravo subframe mount off my old bike before i moved back from pittsburgh. we cut it and shaped it and probably could have used a level when positioning it on the frame…

3 sets of eyes later and it was in the vise to be welded. “yeah, that looks pretty straight!”

it’s just tack welded for now, and now that i’ve had some time to look at it I think i’m going to move the subframe forward more.

i put it so far back because on my magnum/bravo build i was using the original bravo wheel base and all the weight was over the back tire making it kinda squirrelly (especially with two people). so i think i’m gonna move it forward two to three inches and make some new suspension mounts on the general frame as neither the original ones or the rigged up ones in this photo are gonna work.


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Mar 28

new crank, new reeds, fresh bearings and seals

definitely the best rebuild job i’ve ever done. i didn’t have to trim any of the gasket once the case was together. crank movement is really smooth and the engine just popped together really easily.

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i’ve been making a lot of progress on my mopeds now that i’m inbetween jobs (a whole month till I start on the farm).

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i couldn’t get all the red spray paint off the case, but i’m ok with that. i would have had to get some really intense paint stripper or have it bead blasted.

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another thing i’m really excited about with this rebuild is my reed upgrade. I did a lot of poking around online to see if the vforce reed block was worth the money and got mixed reviews. I’ve ridden plenty of hobbits with dual stage boyesen reeds before and I read this review that someone posted on treats and selected the pro series.

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other things in the works:

finishing my HPI mounting plate

adapting a kinetic plastic fan or possibly an echo leaf blower fan if it doesn’t work out

and on my ciao i’ve got to clean up a transmission and replace the brake pad, mount the wheels and reattach the cables and touch up the electrical. then it’s off to goshen to get a people’s pipe! (thanks devin!)


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Mar 19
I moved again. Took me 3 days to clean out the basement in Pittsburgh. I have learned a valuable lesson however, I will never let my workspace get that messy again. My new place in Zeeland, MI has a garage but for now it’s too cold for that so I brought my ciao and some parts in my basement.

I moved again. Took me 3 days to clean out the basement in Pittsburgh. I have learned a valuable lesson however, I will never let my workspace get that messy again. My new place in Zeeland, MI has a garage but for now it’s too cold for that so I brought my ciao and some parts in my basement.


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Feb 12

Booka-booka-booka-booka-booka-booka

this…

plus this…

plus this…

[long awaited] treats order

it’s simple mathematics, check it out, i revolve around science…what are we talking about here?

got this sprocatti stator plate that bolts to a CDI case to allow you to mount and adjust the timing of a points setup. with a little grinding it should accept HPI…

I’m also replacing my crank as my simo crank’s weights were starting to come loose. i looked into a crankshaft rebuilding service but it just didn’t see very cost effective compared to just buying this new one.

in about 3 weeks i’m moving back to west michigan and am really gonna hit the general 5 star vespa build hard


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Jan 20

Rimz

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I popped open the single speed gearbox that came with these mags to give it a good cleaning and once over and ran into something really strange.  It’s a variated gear box with a (longer than usual) single speed shaft and that has angled teeth to interact with the variated gears.  The shaft on the right is from a standard single speed transmission with the one big gear in the middle.  I’m really puzzled.

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I counted the teeth on the gears and they all matched with the olympia stock gear set count

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Basically you’re stuck with a torquey set of internal gears that you can make taller by putting on a smaller drive pulley. Strange.


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