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Old 19th November 2009, 21:56   #1
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Default Hello BHP from Yorkshire

Hello everyone, I first visited this site via a link from a British motorcycle forum. I have two, Indian built Lambretta scooters and found the restoration posts very interesting.

Great site!
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Old 20th November 2009, 01:50   #2
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Welcome aboard, pal. The Lambys you have, did you do the restoration yourself, are they in running condition, or are you planning on remodeling the same? Lots of Lambys from India are being exported since they now have vintage value. What has been your experience with the Lambys thus far?

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Old 20th November 2009, 10:48   #3
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Hello Mitch.Welcome aboard Team BHP.
I have lived in Leeds for few years in the past and we have profound memories of this city and Yorkshire.I used to live on York St.,just opposite to the Leeds Train station.
Lambrettas in Leeds was a surprise for me.How did you acquire Indian Lambrettas.
Im a die hard fan of Vespa and Lambretta scooters.Take a look at my garage.
Do post some pics of your beauties in the Vintage section.Cheers.
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Old 23rd November 2009, 15:41   #4
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Hi guys,
For the last decade or so, Indian Lambrettas have been imported into the UK as 'wrecks'. I understand these are vehicles which have been stockpiled in lockup warehouses in India, then shipped to the UK in containers, each container holding hundreds of Vijays, Allwyns, some Kelvinators, in fact all manor of previously owned, Lambretta style scooters.
The reason for this happening is due to trends in the UK going back to the late 1950s and 60s. In those days, everyone had a scooter. I got my first Lambretta in 1970, it was a Series II Li 125. The scooter scene has continued ever since then, however, when Innoccenti was sold to SIL in 1972 the Italian source ended.
After 1975, when SIL finally managed to start manufacturing, a couple of UK Lambretta dealers decided to source the Grand Prix (Italian DL) (Vijay) from India and sold these into the UK market but soon found quality a real issue.
I understand the UK dealers had to receive the new scooters and totally strip down and reassemble them before they were suitable to sell.
After much cajoling, the GP was available and began to become alive again in the 1980s.
When SIL finished manufacturing scooters in the 90s, then began the importing of 'wrecks' as we call them.
The UK scooter scene is now as vibrant as ever and on our first run of this spring from Knaresborough to York we counted 900. Attendances like that are the norm and every week there are scooter meets, rallies and 'rideouts' with huge numbers.

I purchased my first 'wreck' five years ago and have noticed since then a drying up of supplies. Now the only scooters available are very poor quality but still fetch decent prices, however, Indian Lambrettas will never be worth as much as the absolete, Innoccenti built ones.
Once the source dries up completely then the Indian versions will become obsolete and prices will rise.
Maybe then will UK scooterists start restoring Vijays and Allwyns to original and not 'italianifying' them as is the current trend.
I have to hold my hands up and say I have restored my Vijay as a GP but the Allwyn, although it is not as you would expect it, still has the turning front mudguard, single seats and spare wheel carrier it arrived with. (The mudguard is not its original though). I even use the wire shopping basket. Scooterists see this as more of a novelty scooter than a 'proper' one!
The engine, however, I have uprated to a 184cc Mugello, made in Italy and it is a lot more powerful than the original 150cc.
In the UK, tuners have completely changed the Lambretta engine and some reach ridiculously high levels of power. Most, I think, are unsuitable for this type of vehicle in terms of safety. Hydraulic front brakes are the norm.

Over the coming winter I will post the resto of my Vijay including all photos, just so you can get an idea of what happens here, however, I only spent a modest sum on mine whilst a lot of restorers really go to town!

Hillram, we had a 'rideout' through Leeds City centre this summer. The Police stopped the traffic and pedestrians whilst we went through, however, a dozen or so of us had to help marshalling it and my particular job was stopping traffic in City Square, right where you lived!
It was a fabulous event. About 300 scooters.

One scooter that is VERY rare here is the MAC175. I have never seen one (or maybe I have seen one but as its Series II metamorphosis).
That is a scooter I would love to get hold of.
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Old 23rd November 2009, 19:14   #5
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I used to live in leeds too for about 4 years...kirkstall, headingley areas..
used to love Majestyk and Creations..nice.. ( sorry about going OT, its just that leeds brings back some fond memories )
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Old 23rd November 2009, 19:31   #6
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A few years back, Lambrettas that were sold for scrap in Chennai used to be "parted" and exported abroad for 6-digit figures.
So, these Lambrettas in the UK came from Chennai-pudupet, Mumbai-Kurla,etc. junkyards.

Welcome to the forum, Mitch.
My connection with Leeds is that I have a special friend working "onsite" there.
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Old 24th November 2009, 01:51   #7
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Hey Mitch,
Welcome to the forum. I am sure people are excited about u opening a restoration thread of your 'wreck'.
BTW I am in Leeds since 2 months. Stay near the city center. Next time there is a similar event happening in Leeds, do let me know.

You know, your special friend could be working with me at onsite. Why dont u ping me about ur friend. I may be knowing.
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Old 24th November 2009, 11:27   #8
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Hey Mitch !

Welcome Onboard, i have been in leeds for about four weeks in Feb 2009. I am surprised about the lambretta's being used there. Unfortunately i have not spotted one when i was there.

Very Vibrant place to live. Especially on Weekends, Visited lots of places like, Kirkstall Abbey,Temple New Sam, War Muesuem. Shopping Arcades. After seeing this posts i quickly ran through the photos which i have taken.

Keep Revvin,
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Old 24th November 2009, 11:33   #9
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Hiya Mitch,

Welcome. I spent 40 years in Lancs after a few years in Huddersfield. Moved to India last year. Good luck with your restores.

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