Lambretta Love Affair
From a young age, I had always yearned for a Lambretta. Maybe my love affair of all things Italian drove this affair, along with growing up within the Mod generation.
My first of many decisions was made, I wanted one, buying one finished or in need of restoration was the next big decision. I actually wanted a project to do with my dad, he had the spare time, mechanical experience and the all important empty garage to fulfil this dream.
Finding one at the right price, and a thoroughbred Italian one was a tough find, but eventually I located one in Wembley with the help of an Italian guy called Nicola who regularly rescued forlorn ones from Italy.
The above Lambretta was the one in question, an Italian 1963 LI 125. It was in need of some tender love and affection. I met Nicola and monies exchanged, into the back of the van squeaked the Lambretta. What on earth had I just bought. Just to reiterate I had never done a project like this.
Arriving home and inspecting the Lambretta, it suddenly dawned on me just how much work would be needed. It was a total non runner! Maybe looked ready for the knackers yard. Full of optimism and enthusiasm, naively I started the strip of the scooter. Cans and cans of WD40 were required along with every tool available to undo this wreck.
Once stripped to its bare bones, it did not look good.
This really was going to be a labour of love, with lots of hard earned money spent. With all the correct paperwork and registered, it was time to get the Scooter back to its original colour of Iseo (Duck Egg). Off to the spray shop went my beloved rust bucket to start bringing the scooter back to life.
The rebuilding is the exciting bit, and the bit that empties your wallet, as you search for the pieces to restore this old lady back to life. This is where you realise how rare original parts are and the price tag attached to them reflects this.
The old lady in question was originally registered in Brescia in Italy.
Now came the conundrum of could we get the original engine stripped, rebuilt and running.
It took a good year to get the scooter to the level required for its MOT and roadworthy. A lot of that time was spent sourcing more original pieces.
Would I do a project like this again? Most definitely. The father and son time spent rebuilding this old lady was time well spent that I will never forget.
Yes I need to get out on the scooter more, and the ultimate dream has to be riding this 59 year old lady along the Amalfi coast under blue skies and Mediterranean sun. (Maybe with a young Sophia Loren as my passenger).
She may even spend the summer as a decoration in HQ.
I know exactly the feelings you have gone through restoring the lambretta, I finished my Vespa 150 sprint project middle of 2021. as my old friend Steve said they are addicted and I’m looking for my next project and this time I will to be going down the Lambretta route.
all the best and I’ll take a ride over to the shop before the rains kick in
I can sense a Lambretta duck egg polo shirt in the making.
Be very Careful those things are addictive..
Before you know it you’ll have a garage full of the blumming things …
It’s the never ending question of " if I did another what model would I choose and how would I do it differently – the paint scheme – the engine – maybe a few NOS accessories 🤔 …
Enjoy the Ride
Great read, anytime you fancy a ride out you’re more than welcome with us at Warcop Syndicate Scooter Club