Kits, again.....

Hey Everyone.

I'd like to tackle the old chestnut of Kits for the PX 125 yet again. I'd like more power from my px for scooting around London town and the occasional ride-out. Ideally I'd like to avoid porting for now as the deconstruction of my engine is not something I am willing to attempt right now. My options as I see them are:

  1. Genuine Piaggio 150 kit. Pricey but as reliable as it gets.
  2. LML 150 5 port kit. Greater potencial than Piaggio if I want to take it further later on.
  3. DR 177 Cheap, cheerful, looked down on by my club (as all kits are)
  4. Pinasco 177 ally. Pricey but more reliable. Potentially bigger bang if it does seize though. 
  5. polini/malossi High performance kits with corisponding levels of TLC to make good.

I realize I may have to do a little filing with an engineers file on all of these and have heard that even DR kits need this as they foul the flywheel, is this right?

I just want to plug in and play basically.

BTW running SIP Road exhuast and PX200 drilled filter

Any help appreciated.






The attraction of a px200 is that (if my understanding is correct) they can provide a different level of performance with corresponding tuning. Put in another way, a PX with 20hp should be able to cruise at 60+ if it is set up for torque, and possibly hit 75+ in short bursts. All of a sudden a mountain based tour, even allowing for oxygen starvation due to altitude (am I getting ahead of myself here?) becomes much more attractive. Thinking about it though, a Parmakit ain't that far away from that as it stands! Will your scoot pull these kinda numbers? One thing I will do is ask around my club to see if anyone will help me, though I've already divulged their attitudes to kits!

Brakes, well, I've ridden two T5's, one with a semi-hydraulic disc on the front, the other with Drums. Neither had the 'feel' of the disc on my PX, which is pretty good in comparison (and probably an element of personal preference). Yet riding in central London I have had at least a couple of 'Oh My God, Am I Going To STOP In TIME!' moments due to truly inconsiderate/aggressive/'must get ahead of the bloke on the hair-dryer' driving. I would like to boost the stopping power with better pads (cheap, will do this anyway over the next month or so before season kicks off) and possibly a better disc and calliper eventually, though I don't know the scale of the improvement.

Tubeless rims are great, though I have heard that it can be tricky fitting tyres on them. SIP do them with performers pre-fitted, though it is my understanding that these are a low-mileage tyre and that after a season (3000km's) I would be needing to get them changed. I saw in Scootering Magazine that Pinasco are trialling tubless SPLIT rims! These seem like a much better arrangement, though won't be cheap and probably won't be without teething troubles (maybe?).

The jump from a Pinsaco to a Parmakit is £70. The problem (as I see it, with my limited experience) is getting the rest of the components to deal with such a large power hike (12-16hp). Granted the chassis would be the same as a PX200 or T5 milenium, so theoretically OK(ish) but the crank, clutch and tranny would need upgrading too. 

I think for this season it's a case of DR or Pinasco cast iron, probably the three port cast iron pinasco as it's 'designed to work without porting' (their words, not mine), 22tooth clutch cog and SI24 and see where it gets me. Upgrade chassis of bike next season (Shocks, rims, brakes) then possibly look for yet more of the fruity stuff the season after.  

The ferry to Spain is £400+ though, better through that into the equation too!

By all means let me know if this seems doomed to failure/mediocrity in your honest opinion!



As I've got practically the same setup with a P2 carb (apart from having the alloy cylinder), I'd recommend BE3, 160 a/c and a 118-122 main jet, runs sweet on mine with a 120. Can't remember if I've got a standard 55/160 idle or a 52/140.

Good luck with the test…

Opinions are always divided when it comes to kits but one thing I would say is don't bother with a piaggio 150 kit as you won't notice a huge amount of difference for the cash and effort. I went down this route and regretted it.

I was pondering the same thing 2 years ago as I use my PX to commute and the occasional ride and ended up not going with a Pinasco alloy 177… plenty of pull, don't need to change gear that often around town and can sit at 60 all day. I've got a SIP road too (although I do have an SI24/24 but this isn't essential). The ports are a little bigger than the stock cases, but not ridiculous and can bolt straight on once you grind off the bit that catches on the starter ring. All the ports on the cylinder are pre-chamfered, so that's one less job to do. If you run a kit like this in properly, it should give you no problems at all.

If you don't want to split your cases and match transfers, I'd go Pinasco or DR/Olympia any day, but fit any of the cylinders you've mentioned (over 150) and you'll notice a big difference!



Anyone know of a tuning friendly scooter club in the London area?


As you rightly mentioned, reliability is theoretical and depends on jetting, riding style etc.

Theory has it that alloy cylinders are a little more forgiving and less likely to heat seize, but I'm sure if you jet correctly and look at your plug regularly, any iron one is equally as effective.

Your proposed setup should be great, although i can't vouch for the Pinasco iron personally. I'd fit the kit and see how that runs before up-gearing, you might find you'll like it as it is.

Keep us posted


I'll put the word out! 

My guess it their getting kinda pricey now, I'll see what's happening on the grapevine, my mechanic had a T5 engine afew months ago, for £400, should have gone for that really.

I'll see what turns up, if nowt turns up for less than £400-500 then i'll do the DS177+dellorto 24+ 22clutch cog.

Cheers Matt




I'd get both. And most people with a bike aren't in a club - they're just naturally sociable.

A big bike would be perfect for crossing France, wouldn't it? The faster, the better..


If you can afford to chuck a few hundred quid at your existing engine, the more modern kits (Parmakit and Quattrini) are well worth a look. With a small carb and your SIP pipe, you can be pushing over 16hp. You'd need a new crank and primary drive though (easy changes) and an uprated clutch.

Mildly more expensive than a DR kit. But considerably more capable too.


Options, Options.....


I like your point about the high end kits, though you are right they do require a 'collection' of parts as their outputs are impressive. My mechanic recommended the parmakit by name, and it would be adding a big fat dollop of extra welly from the outset! With that kind of power hike I'd go for beefier shocks, tubeless sport tyres and a brake upgrade also, 'cos I do like to ride. Pretty soon you're looking at a £1000 upgrade (though a rather nice scoot also, it has to be said)


Thinking about it, I'll go for a simple beginner kit like the DR or a Pinasco at a push, with the clutch cog and a carb as a 'beginner' kit so I can feel my way in. If it goes bang for whatever reason it's £150 not £300+. 

Faster is faster, as they say and I'm sure i'd get used to what ever power 'd chuck in there. Also i would not be as committed if a 200 disc came up at good money.

Any thoughts on the Pinasco over the DR? Is it worth the extra if you are not (initially) going to port it?


If kits, per ce, are looked down on by your club, you could do worse than find a different club.

What's your budget? Any engine is reliable if you set it up properly. Jet it properly, and don't leave any obvious weak links in, and it'll be fine.

A DR kit is barely more powerful than the top end you've got. However, you can go up one (easily) on your clutch, thus getting you a few more mph. It'll last for years if looked after. Same with a Pinasco. The Malossi kit is a revvier kit - the power is higher up. Benefits from a bigger carb and an expansion.

If you're not going to take the rest of the engine to bits, I'd stick with something simple like a DR kit.

If you can get your head around taking the rest of it to bits (it's really not difficult), I'd put a better crank in it, up gear it to 23/65 gearing, put the short 4th in, match the cases, and get a better kit than the DR. And, get a 24/24 carb, matched.
You go faster either by making more revs, or upgearing. With more torque/power, there's no reason you can't achieve both.

How long do you plan to keep the bike?

Yeah you're right, opinions are divided on Kits!

Your set-up sounds ideal for reasonable touring, 200-300 miles per day, which is what I am looking for for now. 55mph at around 5500 revs is the ideal. 

Point taken on the 150 kit. To be honest I was thinking the same thing, and the prices for the genuine piaggio stuff are pretty steep, for a modest 1hp doesn't seem like good value at all and would make the larger clutch cog (which, if my assumption is correct, the thing that will really, modestly, increase cruising speed) an experiment into the realms of wild optimism.

So, Pinasco iron or ally? That's the question. Ally has greater theoretical reliability, cast iron cheaper and shouldn't be quite as prone to the dreaded solid seize. 

BTW I have witnessed a solid seize on a T5. 40mph, rear wheel locked. Bloke was lucky as it was a quiet bit of road, not Marble Arch, for example. Caused by faulty oil input coming from separate reservoir. 

I am leaning, as previously mentioned to Pinasco Iron Cylinder, Si24 and 22tooth cog.

Any comments? 

Hi Guys,

So next month looks like it will be Pinasco Cast Iron 177 with 24mil PX200 carb and suck it and see (passing full bike test permitting, blush), as it were. Is the T5 carb worth the extra pennie (and £'s) on the air filter? (or the Polini K&N stlye induction jobbie?)

Then doing the 500miles or so at 'Beige Rover' speeds running in (Hope to finish by May for season!)

Point taken about clutch, it does make sense to hang back a bit and see what the score on the bike is once run in. 

I think my riding style is somewhere between cruiser and thrasher, I'll cruise religiosity at 50mph, but do occasionally use full throttle between the bends. For example I cruised to Box Hill on Monday very sedately, but once going up the hill between the hairpins I gave in the beans. 

When I say beans, due to my standard PX125 set up they definitely weren't Heinz beans, more kinda Happy Shopper, or 'Heritage' as I think they are now know. I would be gutted to raise the final drive only to take the zing out of the thing. 

Suck in as see I think is a wise move.

Cranks, porting and flywheels will be phase two in my engine adventure, it would be nice to improve the pick up a bit. Hope to get to Picos Mountains in spain in 2014 so we'll see.

Any idea of the range that I should be looking to jet? (what should I work down from, basically)

Nice one




Cheers Matt,

Thanks for your sage advice. Presuabably I'm looking at a 22 teeth clutch cog.

Budget is more down to £ for Bhp/realiability

Will probably go DR route as it's simple, bolt on and probably the best bang for buck.

I've read that the DR usually needs a little 'tweaking' i.e a bit of filing around the ports and around the clutch to clear the flywheel. I presume that one thing in favour of the Ally pincanaso is the fact that it will be better basis to the further tuning you discribe. While I would like to do the basics now, I haven't ruled out going further later on.





Your best bang for buck is probably to get a 200 engine. Simple swap over. And flog the 125 engine on to recoup some of the money.

I've never seen a Pinasco kit. They look alright.. what's the jump from that to a Parmakit though? I hear the Polini kits are good.

My Parmakit puts out 16hp. Pulls a 4.8 final drive well. And that's with a 60 mil crank, Worb5 crank and a fancy clutch. It's not the fastest thing in the world, but feels like a fast 'standard' bike.

A DR kit will put out more power than a standard 200, if it's well put together.

And there's no reason any of them would go bang unless you've done something wrong.

The more power you've got, the less effort it is to ride, as you can up the gearing.

A well set up drum brake is fine on a Vespa. They're certainly better than the disc on the front of my indian one. I'd get the tubeless rims for any bike.. regardless of the engine in it. In the big scheme of things, they're a minor expense.

You can fit all the bits yourself quite easily. Just put a weekend aside to do it, and make sure you've got all the bits. They're not rocket science. I did mine, including the porting work (dremmel) and I've never had one in bits before.

I'd start at 130 and work down. But.. the key to jetting them is the air corrector.

Do you have a dyno near you?

You're limited, a bit, with the T5 carb. The jets are a different length. I've got one on mine, but the pilot jet isn't ideal - tad rich.

Hey Guys,


Thanks for the info ElectricSun. that should put me in the ball park and I should be able to work it out from there (start at 122 and work down?). Will go for the P2 Carb as I already have the filter (saving forty nicker in the process). Info has been logged. Will get my mechanic/tutor (lovely guy shows you how to do it and insitists you do it yourself, and cheap into the bargain) to help/supervise.

There is a dyno near me, and I can see the point, but have a feeling that in London it will be £££££'s, which on a simple set up may be overkill(?) Accepted this may have alot to do with the relative skill of my mechanic, though he is used extensively in my club, charges around £60 and has made a good job of DR's before. (Was quoted £250 to fit a kit from a local 'scooter specialist'. They said that fitting kits could run to as much as £1500 if i was unlucky) 

The test, well 600's are fun :) ( Apparently i'm 'not afraid of the throttle') 

Did a lesson on a T5 before rules changed. All things considered would want to have had my own T5 and ridden it on a regular basis to get used to the engine and the clutch. A big 'ol Honda 600 is more forgiving and may actually be cheaper to do the test on.

Just hope the weather changes!

Anyway, I'm off to Lisbon at the weekend, if the weather holds I might hire an LML for a day to explore (30 euros) but we'll see how wrong the weather forecast is.

Nice 1 guys











Cheers Matt,

Thanks for your sage advice. Presuabably I'm looking at a 22 teeth clutch cog.

Budget is more down to £ for Bhp/realiability

Will probably go DR route as it's simple, bolt on and probably the best bang for buck.

I've read that the DR usually needs a little 'tweaking' i.e a bit of filing around the ports and around the clutch to clear the flywheel. I presume that one thing in favour of the Ally pincanaso is the fact that it will be better basis to the further tuning you discribe. While I would like to do the basics now, I haven't ruled out going further later on.





Hey Matt,


Was thinking of keeping it indefinitely, however the lure of 800cc's of Triumph/Moto Guzzi/Honda goodness will no doubt get me in the end....

Not so sure about bike clubs though, hence may hang on to the scoot.


The clincher is touring, Northern France is a bugger to cross on a big bike, never mind a scooter. Planning to go to Barcelona via the Santander ferry and the pyrennes in a couple of years. Your point about a px200 engine is a good one as it provides an excellent base for further, if expensive fun.

Figure on keeping the bike at least two more years, if not 5.