by Stephen Heller
The Symba has arrived in dealerships and I had a chance to take one out for a short test ride. For, those unfamiliar with the Symba, it is a remake of the venerable Honda Cub, a moped that has sold more units than any other vehicle in the world and is still being sold by Honda today. Compared to the other Cub clones that have been brought into the US recently, the Symba is by far the best. The front suspension has been upgraded from the leading link design to a telescoping front fork. The body panels are made of a high grade plastic, and the paint is very nice. I have personly seen the red, but the other colors, black and light blue, should also look great. The seat is very nice looking, although the grab rail for the passenger seat (a metal tube) sticks up right where the best place to sit would be. As for the riding, it is pretty nice. It is a clutch-less, four-speed with a foot shifter, just like the old Cubs and Passports. Still not having a clutch lever to grab is kind of weird. It has a neutral, but because there is no clutch to operate, it will idle in 1st gear until you hit the throttle. There is a heel-toe shifter; which was a bit difficult with tennis shoes on. The 101cc 4-stroke was very peppy and took me up over an indicated 50mph pretty quickly, and had more left if wanted. The drum brakes on the front and rear were adequate for stopping the Symba. Overall, the Symba is a great bike and a pleasure to ride. Thank you Blue Cat Motors for providing the Sym Symba for the test.
Los Vesparados, the scooter art show, is over and from what I saw on Saturday night in the gallery and in the parking lot outside, it was a success. The art ranged from silver jewelry and bandanas, to limited run prints. Much of the art was extremely affordable. Eric and Michael Dregni, authors and local scooterists, donated their archive of vintage scooter posters, advertisements and other ephemera; most of which can be found in their books. It was very cool to see the scooter art and all of the different bikes and odd cars driven by those that attended the show. If you missed it, some of the art will soon be on sale at losvesparados.com, and you can listen to the podcast that was recorded live on Saturday night at twaamshows.com. There are also plans for another Los Vesparados next year so get out your paint.
Rattle My Bones
Rattle My Bones, the Twin Cities largest scooter rally is taking place August 13th- 16th. It is always a fun time. Check out rattlemybones.com for the full schedule. Last year over 300 scooters were in attendance. It is great to be riding in a group of over 100 scooters and see other motorists and pedestrians go from amusement to bewilderment as the ride goes by.