This GS 160 MK 1 is now a world traveller, and in 50 years she is has done a full circle of the globe.
She is was originally imported from the USA (non-battery model GS160)
and brought to Sandy at S.S Scooter in need of a full restoration a year ago.
But now she is heading back with her owner “Obie” to the UK to reside with his formidable collection of Lambretta’s.
Unfortunately, the hard-core Lambretta collector will not have time to be ribbed by his Lambretta riding mates in Oz
about his latest and gorgeous addition to his vintage stable. But I am sure I know a few boys in Blighty that will.
Farewell Graham O’brien you will be sorely missed. Safe travels and GodSpeed.
From a Bondi Beach Bather to PX Street Burner.
Living it’s entire life by Bondi Beach without wearing any protection, this PX was suffering from an extreme case of cancer. With a rusted through frame it was time for me
to overhaul and save this Bondi Beach Bather.
The first job was weld in a new floor to re- strengthen this Vespa’s monocoque chassis .
Once the new floor was painstakingly welded into position, it was time to bring to fruition the tuning and customising concepts the customer dreamed of; from an enormous rear wide tyre conversion, to the 215 cc cylinder which was given the SS treatment flowing through a the stainless expansion pipe hanging off to the left, right down to the subtle CNC calliper to help her stop, are to name a few.
With a luscious coat of gun metal grey, this Vespa has been reborn; and she won’t be lazily sitting around Bondi Beach anymore, as she will be leaving our shores to burn up the winding roads of New Zealand.
Like most Australian imported Vespas and Lambrettas we find a huge discrepancy in our models compared to their Italian mothers.
This Vespa, with its frame number VN2T should be a Faro Basso model (low light or lamp down). In other words, the headlight is mounted on the mudguard, and should also have a 125cc powered cylinder.
But this barn find had neither, the headlight proudly sits atop the handlebars and the cylinder was still at its original 145.5cc bore.
She had either been modified in Australia by the dealer, or she arrived on our shores in her current guise.
I still like to think that the Italians, on a Friday afternoon, would get around to the Australasian export scooters and give them a touch of uniqueness (in other words, they would get rid of excess parts from different models and years and ship them off).
Either way, this bellissima is on her way to a very proud owner in Adelaide. He’ll be riding (not hiding) this uniquely Aussie Vespa, and it will join his vast Vespa and Lambretta collection.
With Team GS completing all tasks and navigating the 1000km to the finsh line in Victor Harbour in South Australia, we cant wait for next year’s Mille in Victoria!
Featured Scooters in the photos:
Mark: GS150 VS5 1961, left
Sandy: GS 160 mark 2 1963, middle
Fleur: GS160 mark 1 1962, right
Photos by: Wolfwerk Photography
We’ve added a easy link to our Terms & Conditions form regarding scooter servicing at the workshop. Check it out here.
Please have a look and have it filled in next time you book in your scooter with us.
The longest ridden to Fremantle is our own Fleur (formerly of the Canberra Swarm). After a service, clutch change and the installation of a very trick intercom system on her trusty PX 200 at S.S Scooter Engineering, she traveled from Sydney to Canberra to rendezvous with her friends Chris and Nikki, to tackle the unrelenting Nullarbor plains.
During her 13 day ride, she encoured many unique Australian characters including a man walking around Australia in a Storm Trooper uniform raising money for the Starlight Foundation (http://www.everydayhero.com.au/troopertrek), and at night she continued to train for the Melbourne marathon she was running the week after.
Along the way, a tire change was all that was needed for her to conquer the rugged Australian landscape and assert herself as a true Australian scooter legend by covering more than 5200km on her voyage. Well done Fleur James!
After many years of passionate Lambretta restorations, Graham O’Brien not only won his category at the National Classic Scooter Rally in Fremantle, but he took out top honours at the Show and Shine event which had over 180 entrants. The best overall scooter at the rally was overwhelmingly awarded to his Lambretta TV175 series one. S.S. Scooter Engineering were as proud as Obie, as we spent hundreds of hours meticulously restoring her to a world class standard.
From the day the it docked in Fremantle, the 1958 Lambretta roared into action with just one kick of the spring-tensioned kick starter. She did not miss a beat all weekend even on the more gruelling rides through the beautiful Western Australian hillsides and great Aussie heat.
One of the worlds most rare, and in our opinion, most beautiful scooters, was not only doing the 100km round trips effortlessly but was leaving some scooters behind in a cloud of 6% 2 stroke mist.
But she was not alone in Lambretta TV1 glory. Ron from Casa Lambretta also brought in not only one but two running unrestored TV1s. A sight that may never be seen again in my lifetime were three TV1s running side by side, and it marked a great moment in Australian scootering history.
For more pictures check out our restorations.
On the 29th of September S.S. Scooter stepped off the plane at Fremantle with the guys and girls from the Ardly Normal Scooter Crew. All 24 of us were anxious to get to the shipping yard to unload our classic scooters from the 20 foot container. The ‘Squadron Leader’ of the Ardly Normals, Oly Ashworth, has spent the past 12 months not only organising the shipment but also accommodation and flights for all of us, and it all was pulled off with military precision. Without Oly’s dedication, commitment, efficiency and his expecting wife Mazza’s patience (congratulations guys) we could not of been there. So a big thank you from all of us.
I had already been missing my SS90 and my wife Fiona could not wait to ride her 22hp VNB street racer on the streets of Fremantle. The SS90 fired up perfectly and Fiona was screaming down the freeway when I encountered my first hiccup. My scooter was starting to misfire going up the bigger hills. But I got to Fremantle safely and had a few beers with the crew to acquaint ourselves to the local brew and forgot about the gremlins that were lurking inside my machine.
The next day we met at the E Sheds on the docks of Freo and a couple of hundred scooters were there to greet us. All I could see were beautiful classic scooters and familiar faces I knew from previous rallies. All I could think was “Wow the boys in Western Australia sure know how to restore these classic machines”. I set off with all the excitement I had when I was a lad going on a run. But only 20km in, I knew there was a problem. My SS90 was misfiring all over the place. I knew it was electrical, but I didnt wanted to miss out on riding the beautiful coastal roads we were on. I knew the smallest hill would kill the day, and it did. With a cough and a splatter the SS90 wound down to a complete stop. All I could do was wait for the back up van to pick me up. With the gracious Carol at the helm of her husband Phil’s van we loaded up the scooter. From the window I could see all the beauty of the Western Australian coastline and I was determined to get her on the road for the next day.
With the help of Ron from Casa Lambretta, Jimmy in back up van and Evo and Roberto from the Vespa Shop, I got the tools out and diagnosed an imminent condenser failure. I quickly replaced and rewired the plate but I knew that I’d had a bad run of condensers recently so I did not hold my breath. No Spark… Dud condenser… I knew it… It must of been the batch made on the Friday before the Italian summer holidays! At 9.45am I got her going, just in time for the ride up to the hills. What a ride! I was in the midst of the Paradise Lost Scooter Club’s street racers,beautifully restored Lambrettas and Vespas, riding up through dense bushland that showed the scars of raging bush fires from a hot summer the year before. My SS90 was blazing down the road keeping up with GP200’s and Fiona was screaming down the road giving the RB240’s a run for their money.
That night the Do was even better than the night before. It was held at a venue used to be a aircraft hanger called the Fly By. The Paradise Lost Club could really put on a great event. On the morning of the Show and Shine we were all feeling a little worse for wear but another 80km ride was in order to a small German brewery in the Swan Valley. At the event S.S Scooter had fun selling our t-shirts, hats and other merchandise and had the opportunity to meet more wonderful people from the scooter community from all around Australia. We were also honoured in taking out the Best Unrestored Vespa with my SS90.
With the rally drawing to a close the Paradise Lost Scooter Club had another ace up there sleeve for the evening’s celebration at Devilles. Ska and garage bands, a volcano in the middle of the dance floor and Go-Go girls fired us up to dance the night away. A huge thank you to the Paradise Lost Scooter Club, not only for hosting one of the best scooter rallies I have been too, but for their generosity, friendship, hospitality and showing us all what a great Australian scooter club can be.
I cant wait until next year’s Classic National on the Gold Coast hosted by the Borderline Nuisance. I have already started on the next projects. My nitrous Vespa Sprint is being rebuilt, faster and badder than ever and a Vespa PE restyled in GS body panels is already underway. Hope to see you all there next year, and be sure to check in with S.S Scooter Engineering if you need any assistance with your classic scooter.