June 12, 2015
Hey, 2SB readers! Bryan here…
As you know, 2strokeBuzz has been pretty dead for a while now, I got kinda disillusioned with scootering a few years ago and even with the addition of Matt and Brooke, we’ve only been posting sporadically. Ironically, in the meantime (with a lot of help from friends and mechanics) I’ve got two running vintage bikes and I’ve been riding more than ever. Turns out, for all I’ve spoken up on behalf of modern scooters and modern scooterists, I’ve realized over time that my true love is vintage scooters, and I miss talking about and riding vintage scooters just as much as I don’t miss arguing with clueless importers and feeling compelled to write about uninspiring new scooters.
So the point is, 2strokeBuzz is not dead, but we are taking it easy in our old age. The first issue of the ‘zine came out nearly TWENTY years ago, so you can be sure we’re going to celebrate that milestone in January 2016. In the meantime, I’m thinking about what we are, and where we want to be. This blog is maybe no longer the right format, not everyone’s on Facebook, I still don’t really ‘get’ Twitter, but I want to keep making 2SB happen. The focus will definitely be reverting to vintage scooters and silly fun, minus the pressure of keeping up with modern scooter/breaking industry news kinda stuff that was bringing me down. If you have suggestions or would like to contribute something, please let me know.
Your reward for reading so far into this blather? We’re going to PVSC next weekend and we’re going to have our first new print issue for sale there (only $2!). It’s going to be super-lame by the standards of the old days, but it’s our first step in getting things going again. If you’re coming to PVSC, track us down! We’re only printing 40 copies, it’ll include a special bonus item, and it’ll ONLY be available at the PVSC rally, so if nothing else, you can sell it on eBay and maybe make your two bucks back.
I’m setting aside 9 of the 40 copies to give away online to the first three commenters on this post here on the site (remember your login? me neither!), on our Facebook page, and on Twitter (if I remember to check Twitter). Remember to comment on this post, not just anywhere. If you win and you’re at PVSC I’ll give it to you there, otherwise I’ll track you down and mail it. Thanks for supporting 2strokebuzz for ALL. THESE. YEARS.
April 1, 2015
It’s been more than a year since our last (non-CWC) post, and i’m sick of dumb April Fools’ pranks, so here’s something real, and awesome: Motorliebe, aka Lars, Dani, Blumi, and Mariuz, rode across the U.S.A. last summer on Vespa P200s, and I know a lot of 2SB readers had the pleasure of meeting them along the way, especially at PVSC Band Camp. They were self-sufficient, organized, and ridiculously fun to be around, and I think we were all a bit bummed out to see them go back to Germany. Meeting them was a highlight of my summer and reminded me why I love scootering, and it certainly made a certain Thomas Müller goal a little easier to swallow.
Be sure to check out their great video!
Anyway, point being (when did 2sb ever get to the point quickly?) Motorliebe’s photo book about their trip is coming out soon, and was previewed in a great photo gallery and interview with Dani in German newsmagazine Der Spiegel. It seems to be available for preorder from the publisher and amazon.de but I’m a lame monoglot and can’t figure out shipping. I’ve asked the guys if it will be available in the U.S., I’ll let you know when I hear back.
March 13, 2014
Veloce books, the British motorsports publisher responsible for at least half of the decent scooter books available out there, has published a Vespa Buyer’s Guide mobile app. The last thing I need is more vintage scooters so I’m too cheap to drop $2.50 on it, but if it’s anything like their books, it’s probably useful, worth the money, comfortingly Anglocentric, and
<snark>not as well-designed as it could be.
April 30, 2013
Haynes just released their Lambretta Repair Manual covering the series I, II, and III models from 1958 – 2000 including Servata and obviously SIL. The book comes in a nice hardcover with some color and plenty of black and white photos chronicling a complete tear down and rebuild. Who will be the first to put it to the test to see how accurate it is? Makes me wonder if the sales of Sticky’s manual had anything to do with the decision to finally release a Lambretta manual?
January 9, 2013
Hodgespeed let us know that SIP is currently in the process of making tooling to produce Vespa smallframe PK-style engine cases. Great news in itself, as they’d gone out of production, but to me, the interesting part of the post is the CAD drawings of the mold for one side of the case. You hear a lot of people saying “Why don’t they just make….” Here’s the answer, look at the complexity and SIZE of that mold, and that’s just for one case-half (engine cases having two halves, you see.) So knowing that SIP has invested tens of thousands of Euros already, with all the machining and production costs to come, and testing, and the concern that the demand might be less than anticipated, or any tiny mistake in engineering or quality control could be disastrous, it’s a wonder they’ve taken on the project, though I’d wager most scooterists are certainly glad they did.
Now, a note, because everytime I post something like this, I get emails once a month forever from non-english speakers: 2strokebuzz does not sell this or any scooter parts. If you are interested in this product, please contact SIP in Germany.
April 10, 2012
The main shop-keep of this blogeteria is a self-denied master of many media. Another good pal of mine, John Britton, is also an artist and craftsman and has made a few cool works he has available. The one that caught my eye was the spark plug and scooter print. In the past he has done several fantasttic pieces as rally artwork and branding support for Brookespeed Scooter Disposal Service.
You couldn’t throw a rock into gaggle of scooterists and not hit a few people who are professional artists, designers or generally crafty by trade. Some take it to the highest levels of commerce and others may rely on Etsy or booths at scooter rallies to turn their creative product into bread on the table or spare cables in the glovebox. So if you are a 2StrokeBuzz reader and want to share your scooter shaped potholders that you knit yourself and sell on Etsy or anything else you are proud of drop a line via email to me at brooke at 2strokebuzz (and you fill in the rest).
DO NOT POST A LINK TO YOUR STUFF IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. YOU WILL END UP WITH A LUMP OF COAL IN YOUR STOCKING! (But feel free to comment on anything else!)
March 22, 2012
The women behind Go Go Gear will be appearing Friday night (March 23, 2012) on ABC’s Shark Tank. ScooterGirls, Inc. out in L.A. make safe AND fashionable (at the same time!) women’s (and men’s) riding gear and we can’t imagine the investors on the show won’t jump at the chance to get involved in their plans for world domination.
I generally run screaming from “reality TV,” but Shark Tank is a fun, well-done show, and I’ve been hooked on it since friend-of-a-friend Steve Gadlin talked Mark Cuban into investing $25,000 towards his internet-based cat-drawing business. Things are looking great for Steve, and we hope Arlene and her cohorts can score an equally attractive deal. The 2SB HQ Tivo is set and fingers are crossed, ladies!
February 29, 2012
We generally dig Veloce Publishing, they have several great scooter and microcar books. They’re a bit more expensive than we’d like, but March 1 is World Book Day and Veloce is offering 50% off any book.
February 15, 2012
Piston Ported has just come out with their own line of sporty seats for both the Vespa and Lambretta. Of note is the Ancillotti seat for pre-P series large frames, which is ideal if you have a GS, SS, or Rally with the hump for the larger gas tank – or those looking for a seat that a bit more curvy than the squared off P-series version. Now if only he would hire a one legged busty model he’d sell a million….
February 14, 2012
Once again I’m drinking alone and reading Facebook. I just read about the new service offered by Jet 200 to re-magnetize Lambretta flywheels. I inquired if it was open to Vespa flywheel re-magnetization. The reply of ‘no’ was soon delivered. So I guess if you are one of the ‘cool kids’ with a Lambretta you are set for getting back good spark and bright lights before the next season starts. If not, you’ll have to rely on Motorsport Scooters (aka ScooterWest). How about everyone get on this before Memorial Day weekend when you call your buddy who’s a crack scooter wrench to try and get your scooter running for the first time in 8 months. It’ll probably help.
Any other scooter shops out there have one of these magic magnetizers?
February 7, 2012
Jen points out that Heritage Helmets now offers Trojan Records helmets to go along with their Consortium-approved Lambretta helmets. They even offer one with both Trojan and Lambretta logos, which is kind of surreal. Beautiful stuff, but, once again, they totally forgot the part that covers your chin and face. If you can afford an extra helmet for parades and photo shoots, pony up!
October 25, 2011
A few years back, Lambretta Clothing teamed up with The Who to reissue some of the band’s Mod-est attire, including the famous parka from the cover of Quadrophenia, pre-stenciled for your convenience. Apparently Lambretta marketing contracts aren’t worth much these days, so with a new Quadrophenia CD/DVD “Directors Cut” box set coming out, they’ve switched alliances to Vespa. Mancunian twit Liam Gallagher will display a new PX125-based Quadrophenia scooter, film memorabilia, and Who-insipired fashions–including (again) the Quadroparka–at his Pretty Green clothing store on (where else?) Carnaby Street.
In other news, Noel Gallagher has installed turnstiles at Easington Colliery, charging punters £5 to urinate on a lump of concrete.
Quadrophenia, aside from its obvious charms to scooterists (and I admit a compulsion to watch it occasionally), isn’t much of a film and is even less of an album, so it’s interesting to see it repackaged yet again. Confusingly, (“Director’s Cut?”) this new 6-disc set doesn’t include the film at all (the DVD is surround mixes of the album), and omits all the great music (by the Who and other R&B greats) that appeared on the original soundtrack, which was re-released in 1993 and 2000.
The album (as opposed to the soundtrack) isn’t horrible, it’s just neither the Mod music that’s the subject of the film, nor the Mod revival music that sparked its release. It’s exactly the noodly late-’70s stadium rock that Revival Mods and Punks were rebelling against at the time. It may be sacrilege (and completely against the point), but I’ve always felt, aside from a couple tracks, the film would have been better off with all music from the mod era. The book included in the box set is the most compelling component, I’d be far more interested in the backstory and Townshend’s memories than hearing demos and gimmicky 5.1 mixes. Townshend calls it “…the best album that I will ever write,” but it says a lot that the album was blocked from #1 on the charts by Pin Ups, David Bowie’s great ’60s cover album… containing two early Who songs.
Via Scooterism, of course.
September 13, 2011
“If you’re one of those people who find James Joyce’s “Ulysses” too long and lacking in pictures” of vintage scooters, Alister Kitchen’s Scooters of the Apocalypse comic book is available now from Createspace or Amazon. It looks great, we’ll definitely be stocking a copy in the 2strokebuzz bathroom library.
September 8, 2011
…have a new uniform. Good to see the Jets back, especially at the expense of Atlanta, but this better not pull the Wings out of the Western Conference.
July 12, 2011
Vivo Scooters in Edinburgh, Scotland is selling parts and kits to convert P-series Vespas and the LML Star (Genuine Stella, 4T or 2T) to a vintage-looking style. A chintzy-looking fiberglass kit was available from another manufacturer a few years ago, but this one features (mostly) metal parts and seems to be better-designed. Vespa purists may scoff that these kits could be used to fool inexperienced consumers, but considering the cost of a Stella plus $1500 for a painted kit, it doesn’t seem cost-effective as a ‘scam.’ I like the Stella the way it is, and I certainly don’t get the point of disguising a vehicle as something it’s not (especially when the real thing is readily available at a lower price) but I can accept Stella owners wanting prettier cowls and maybe ditching the ugly P-series-type horncast, and it’s always nice to see options like this available.
Check out Eric’s Modern Buddy thread for all the pros and cons arguments you’d expect.