My naieve hope starting out was that I could just repair the existing parts of a barn-find VBB, so that it was 100% original. However the Vespa I ended up getting for my restoration had a number of problems (that I knew about going in). For one, the engine was totally frozen -- it wouldn't even kick over. For another, the headlight was gone and the reflector too rusted to restore. And to make things interesting, the throttle and the shifter were both totally wedged. Evidently this poor Scooter sat out in a grassy field for 20 or more years, and every moving part on it, with the exception of the wheels, was siezed up.
So the revised plan was to repair what I could, and replace what I had to. I conceived of it in two phases:
- Rebuild the engine, to be sure that it can be made to work.
- Rework the suspension, replace the tires and lights, so it is street legal.
- Put it back together, get it registered, and ride it for a bit!
- Take it all apart again, do the body work, dip it, prime it, repaint it.
- Put it all back together and voila!
- Take it to a ralley and win lots of awards.
In my next post I will explain why the above plan will need to be modified a bit...