I got a call from Roberto (the Vespa Wizard) about an interesting/rare Vespa Postie scooter he'd found. It'd been garaged since the mid 1980s but had suffered considerable corrosion to it's monocoque, especially the floor pan and underneath the central tunnel. It also had myriad holes drilled every where. Interestingly, after minimal attention the engine fired up and ran very sweetly. Being such a rare find Roberto was enthused and of course keen to restore it. The primary issue was the corrosion in the frame...so after a call to me we decided on a course of action. Just a little bit of cut & shut!
If you ever wanted to see the internals of a scooter monocoque here's your opportunity.
Hi Jeff. Yes the SA postie scooters were 150 VBC Supers with 8" wheels. I've got one. Not a postie scooter but a private import. The VBC was introduced in 1965. It has the same backbone as earlier models but was fitted with more squared off cowls and front fender like those on the SS180 (the successor of the GS160). The frame Vincent is working on can't be any earlier than late 1967 when the new octagonal Piaggio badge first appeared. It's mounted just below the headlight. A link to Scooter Help:
Yours might have been one of the special light weight projects for a more speedy delivery of telegrams........ ;-)
Fantastic pix Greg. It's great to see what one actually (physically) looked like...albeit though, in black and white.
I like the way the spare wheel is bolted underneath the rear rack
Yes, it's good use of the available space...not that there's a lot of it though. The riding and handling quality of the scooter could be a bit of a concern with that parcel tray and a decent load at the front.
Hi John, yes molasses is fine if you've got the patience for it and a bath tub or something suitable for the immersion process. As for lead loading, it's still used quite a lot in the vintage, classic and custom restoration fields. It's more permanent than plastic fillers, is not porous and also strengthens/reinforces thin panels.
A friend of mine restores vintage cars and uses 'electrolysis' as a method to clean components. You just have to be aware that the process can produce a range of volatile gases. http://www.rickswoodshopcreations.com/miscellaneous/rust_removal.htm
Day 6. Postie Scooter Monocoque Rebuild.
Note: (Day 5. Can be found on p.2 of this blog)
The work carried out today finalizes the major repairs to the scooter body. There are 2 small 1/8" holes remaining near where the number plate attaches...no big deal just something I missed amongst the myriad of holes on this scooter. The only remaining part needing physical repair is the front mud guard attachment holes which have torn. Once this is done, it's ready to return to Roberto who'll undertake all the mechanical refurbishment whilst the body is passed onto his panel beater and painter.
Here are the final pictures of my work.
Hi Jeff...I'll drop it over to Roberto's workshop early next week. If you live locally why not drop over briefly for a chat and I can show you the areas you can clean/prep on the body (if you're desperate to see it) and are still interested in doing this work. None of it's very technical but should save the panel beater/painter valuable time. Roberto has my contact details (or PM me)...I live quite close to his workshop.