Advice on my first moped purchase

Howdy, I'm Guthrie, somewhat new here and I had a couple questions.

I live in NYC, am 17, and am looking to buy a moped for commuting throughout college and the upcoming years. I've done some research on Craigslist, ebay, and even here, but I'm having some trouble finding anything I'm sold on. I have about 1000~ I'm willing to spend all in all, but that includes the cost of renting a van/pickup and registration fees, so it's more like 800~ buckaroos for the bike. Everything I've found has been a bit pricey, not my type, or too far. I guess I should also mention I don't have a garage or workshop to do any serious repairs, though I am mechanically handy and have an auto shop near me. So here are my questions, no need to answer all, but I appreciate what you can help me with!

1.) Should I be looking for bikes with or without a title? I know about the M51 and M51B, but is that not ideal?

2.) Will a standardish sized moped fit upright in a minivan? If not, what's a good way to secure it to a pickup (never transported a cycle before);.

3.) Are there any good resources for inexpensive, pre-owned but otherwise running mopeds (other than craigslist, ebay, and here)?

4.) Does it make sense to just bite the bullet and get something not running? My fear is that while I'll think it's just a carb that needs cleaning, it'll actually be a different issue, i.e with electricals or more in depth engine stuff, and I'll be f*cked,

5.) I've been somewhat frantic as none of the mopeds I've seen have had signals, presumably because they don't have a battery, so therefore I probably couldn't even add them if needed. Does it really matter for a class C? Or in your experience are hand signals okay? Note I live in a pretty dense city, and I want to prioritize my safety to spare my sweet mother a heart attack.

Thanks again all, hope to be back with some cool moped pics!

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

Charles McCusker /

1) i don't know your laws in NY, i'm sure it's on the web. here in ohio i don't need a title, i can register a bike with the vin written on a napkin.

2) it absolutely will if you dont have a third row. hell you can probably fit 3 or 4.

3) local facebook community? maybe go hit up second stroke mopeds and they can help you out in more ways than just getting a bike.

4) This is wildly dependent on both how your brain works and how much mechanical experience you have. You will absolutely learn a ton rebuilding a non runner, but if you are desperate to get it running and/or keep it running for transport reasons, that's probably going to be a rough experience. This is a bravery/confidence call on you. A solid stock runner is a good place to start.

5) you can have them without a battery, most dont have them, hand signals work great because you can wave about like a mad man. ALSO no oppinion, it's turn signals, ask el pollo.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

Charles McCusker /

OH also for #2, you can secure a bike in a truck bed upright with a single tie down run through the forks and tensioned down. just look up "motorcycle truck bed" on google and there will probably be multiple articles showing how to do it. add a second one for extra peace of mind.

OH also, you don't need a garage or shop space to rebuild a moped. you could rebuild one in your bathtub. One nice thing to consider is you can take it up the stairs and store in your apartment for security. can't do that with a motorcycle.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

I would highly recommend something other than a moped of your looking for reliable transportation...

If your dead set I'd recommend a non running bike. After fixing it up you'll have a basic understanding of how to fix it when your stranded. You will break down. Most likely often until you get to know what you need to carry to keep it running.

DO NOT BUY A FRENCH BIKE! Get a Puch, tomos or minerelli v1 powered bike. You can move on to the self harm of frenchy's once your love of mopeds makes you a dumdum.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

> Aaron Blair Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> I would highly recommend something other than a moped of your looking

> for reliable transportation...

>

> If your dead set I'd recommend a non running bike. After fixing it up

> you'll have a basic understanding of how to fix it when your stranded.

> You will break down. Most likely often until you get to know what you

> need to carry to keep it running.

>

> DO NOT BUY A FRENCH BIKE! Get a Puch, tomos or minerelli v1 powered

> bike. You can move on to the self harm of frenchy's once your love of

> mopeds makes you a dumdum.

I’ve been working bicycles for about 3 years now, have about a years experience at a shop, and a little experience with cars and motorcycles. I guess part of my interest is in being able to eventually fix it & upgrade it when needed, but really I’d just like to get riding first which is why I’d prefer something running. Trying to build a mini bike in a nyc apartment left a bad taste in my mouth, so I want to avoid any MAJOR work, and I’m not sure I’m willing to take a 4-6 hundred dollar risk.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

> Charles McCusker Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> 1) i don't know your laws in NY, i'm sure it's on the web. here in ohio

> i don't need a title, i can register a bike with the vin written on a

> napkin.

>

> 2) it absolutely will if you dont have a third row. hell you can

> probably fit 3 or 4.

>

> 3) local facebook community? maybe go hit up second stroke mopeds and

> they can help you out in more ways than just getting a bike.

>

> 4) This is wildly dependent on both how your brain works and how much

> mechanical experience you have. You will absolutely learn a ton

> rebuilding a non runner, but if you are desperate to get it running

> and/or keep it running for transport reasons, that's probably going to

> be a rough experience. This is a bravery/confidence call on you. A solid

> stock runner is a good place to start.

>

> 5) you can have them without a battery, most dont have them, hand

> signals work great because you can wave about like a mad man. ALSO no

> oppinion, it's turn signals, ask el pollo.

Thanks for your advice, appreciate it!

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

> Guthrie Mass Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Howdy, I'm Guthrie, somewhat new here and I had a couple questions.

1.) Should I be looking for bikes with or without a title? I know about the M51 and M51B, but is that not ideal?

Mv51 and Mv51b are for non-titled vehicles which mopeds apply under if you don't have one. It's a common practice to need to submit these.

2.) Will a standardish sized moped fit upright in a minivan? If not, what's a good way to secure it to a pickup (never transported a cycle before);.

Depends on the van, but you can fit a moped in most moderately sized vehicles by only needing to take the front wheel off, I've managed to cram my derbi into a ford fiesta.

4.) Does it make sense to just bite the bullet and get something not running? My fear is that while I'll think it's just a carb that needscleaning, it'll actually be a different issue, i.e with electricals or more in depth engine stuff, and I'll be f*cked,

Depends on how skilled mechanically you are, cheap non runners tend to be filled with goblins if you are unfamiliar with common issues

5.) I've been somewhat frantic as none of the mopeds I've seen have had signals, presumably because they don't have a battery, so therefore I probably couldn't even add them if needed. Does it really matter for a class C? Or in your experience are hand signals okay? Note I live in a pretty dense city, and I want to prioritize my safety to spare my sweet mother a heart attack.

Signals can be added, but for class B/C they are not required, hand signals do just fine

Thanks again all, hope to be back with some cool moped pics!

Dont talk to me or my son ever again

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

So you are considering a non runner, but don't want the risk of it being more than a carb clean? You want to learn how to fix a mopeds, but don't want any major work? Do yourself a favour, buy the best you can for your money. Get a runner with a title. Only buy modified if you can see it actually running, ideally ask if you can see the starting process from a cold engine. You're going to need quite a security budget if you plan on keeping it outside. Stick with a Puch: more parts from more places, so you can get knowledge and fix in super quick time. Hit up a moped shop near you if there is one, even offer to sweep up and make the coffee for wrench experience. Mopeds break down, plan for that.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

> Ryan Graeme Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> So you are considering a non runner, but don't want the risk of it being

> more than a carb clean? You want to learn how to fix a mopeds, but don't

> want any major work? Do yourself a favour, buy the best you can for your

> money. Get a runner with a title. Only buy modified if you can see it

> actually running, ideally ask if you can see the starting process from a

> cold engine. You're going to need quite a security budget if you plan on

> keeping it outside. Stick with a Puch: more parts from more places, so

> you can get knowledge and fix in super quick time. Hit up a moped shop

> near you if there is one, even offer to sweep up and make the coffee for

> wrench experience. Mopeds break down, plan for that.

It’s not that I don’t really want it, it’s just impractical for my situation. I love working on things, and would be disappointed if I never had to do any work on my future moped, but I’d like to at least have a little bit of fun riding, and repairing as I go, piece by piece, rather than being stuck with a bedrooms worth broken moped. Thanks for your advice, I think I’m pretty set on running right now, but I’m comfortable with a little TLC.

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

Charles McCusker /

you probably have the right attitude, get something you can ride that's stock-ish (pipe and filter are probably fine), learn to keep that running well. Just don't modify it too much if you want to put lots of reliable mileage on it. Don't be afraid of getting a second moped that is a backup runner...trust me, that's a good idea...buy more mopeds. ONE OF US ONE OFUS

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

Personally, I prefer a titled bike, but your laws out there are a lot more complicated than those in my state. I would get a runner, don't just listen to it idle a minute, RIDE it for 10-15 minutes. Shut it down and start it a few times. If you are in a low speed area, I would recommend a Yamaha QT-50, a no-ped, and again not sure what that qualifies as in your state, but it is a simple rugged design, small enough to fit in most cars, shaft drive and directional signals, also CDI ignition, keep a battery in it so you don't burn up your charge coil. Easy parts availability, performance parts are avail as well. Easy to carry up stairs. Oil injected, but many take it off so make sure you know if they did, one downside, small fuel tank. Another favorite of mine is the Honda Hobbit, I've owned a stock one since '98 and never any major issues. My 2cents.(edited)

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Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

find a honda, puch, tomos, or motobecane. plenty of info out there on em

i got a Honda Hobbit as my first bike and since i've probably had near 10 of em,, currently have 2 at the moment and love em!! hope you can catch the honda hobbit habbit

hahaha

naw but good luck, stay persistent and keep at it - they're going to piss you off from time to time but when running and riding it makes it all worth it

Re: Advice on my first moped purchase

Lots of goodly answers to the legal and transportation questions so I am not going to guess on the legal stuff and add to the transportation part.

One thing about the turn signals though - if you have them, even if they are add ons, you have to use them and they have to be 100% serviceable - cops fave reason to stop and issue tickets in many jurisdictions is failure to signal lane changes and turns.

Do you have the facilities to wrench your own bike is something to consider. You can save yourself a lot of future troubles if you have the time and mechanical inclination to work on your own ride.

ALSO do some research here on MA in the Repair and Performance sections, look at the troubles people have with Puch or Honda or Tomos or Moby or Peugeot (etc) and see what sort of troubles folks have and compare that to mechanical and electrical aptitude. It might be a bit obvious which bike I favour, but that might not be your first choice or even a good fit.

KEEP IN MIND. while you do a bit of research, there is a ton of help already posted here on MA and a bunch of really goodly folk who can help you figure out snags before they become frustrating or a nightmare.

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