This is the story of my '64 Vespa 150 - how it became mine and how it has given me a new vespatude.  I'll be recording the neat places I visit, the different things I do to make the Vespa my own, and - oh yeah - those reactions I get from both friends and strangers.

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Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Happily scooting along!
Tonight I came home from work after a kind of frustrating day. I felt a huge load on my mind and I was just plain tired. My wife let me go off for a few minutes while she fixed dinner. The Vespa needed gas, so I put some 2 stroke oil in a bottle and headed out to the gas station.

I put the fuel in the tank and dumped the oil in. Shaking the bike back and forth got it mixed up good and then it was time to hit the road. Because my time was limited, I headed downtown. I wanted to see how the scoot would do in the stop and go traffic of Main St.

The idle is still not right, so I did end up stalling at a couple of the red lights. If I don't hold the throttle open just slightly, the bike will choke. I have tried to tighten and loosen the idle screw to find the right adjustment and it just won't work. Any ideas what might be causing it?

Overall though, it was great! I went all the way down Main St. to Augusta Rd. I then turned onto Church St. to head home. I opened it up and sat back on the seat and cruised down the road. No problem feeling like I was in the way with my new 177cc purring beneath me.

As I neared the main part of downtown the rain began to fall. The few drops that were falling smacked my helmet and stung my face. I almost felt like laughing. It felt so good. The light was green at the sweeping intersection where Church turns into Wade Hampton. I leaned into the turn and headed up the boulevard to my street.

Oh, what a feeling. The wind and rain blew away the load. What a joy to be happily scooting along...

Congrats! I knew you could do it! I have following you since you began! I really admire your patience. I would have given up last year. Your wife is a saint, my wife would have left me. your blessed that your family backs you up a cool project.p.s. Check that all springs are in place on the carb idle area. good luck. walt

Regarding your idle problem- there are two adjustments you need to check.

First, there should be a screw that sets the height at which the throttle slide sits when you close the throttle. If you're having to keep the throttle cracked, this screw is probably set too far out.

Not sure exactly where this screw is (the last time I was on a Vespa was back in 1960, a bizarre story in itself) but I've been working on motorcycles since the late 1970s and there are only so many places it can be- since it determines where the slide settles, it pretty much has to be on the side of the carburetor near the base of the tubular section where the slide lives.

Once you've got the idle speed set, you should set the idle mixture. This will be another screw that essentially meters a controlled fuel leak into the carburetor at idle. Once the bike is warmed up and idling, back the idle mixture screw out 1/4 turn at a time. In most cases the idle speed will increase with each 1/4 turn, until the mixture gets too rich- at that point, further opening will cause the idle to bog down. Once that happens, turn the screw back in by 1/4 turn and you should be good to go.

All of this is, of course, contingent on getting the bike to start in the first place.

Best of luck. And keep posting. I've really enjoyed following your Vespa adventures.

Bill Metz

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