Motorized scooters for adults are really picking up the pace when it comes to fashionable ways of transportation right now. They are quick and easy to use, don’t crowd the streets, and they also help with those problematic CO2 emissions.
If you’re one of those people who like to follow the trends, you’ve probably often wondered how exactly does a motorized scooter work? How strong is its engine to be able to withstand that amount of movement and usage? Since we were also pretty curious, we did some digging and here’s some information we came up with.
A scooter overview
Scooters are motorized two-wheel vehicles which come very handy in crowded cities or whenever you need to be able to move with the fluidity that a car does not possess. A typical scooter usually has a 250-cubic-centimeter engine or any size smaller than that. Unlike a motorcycle, one of these bad boys has a solid one-piece frame called a step-through frame.
They are widely regarded as civilized means of transportation and rewarded with parking advantages due to their size. Since the engine is not particularly strong, many states across the U.S. allow them to be ridden without a motorcycle license as long as it’s limited to about 35 miles per hour.
Scooters are the cleaner, sound-free version of motorcycles. For most models, the engine is concealed in a shell that prevents oil from leaking onto the rider’s pants. The cowl covered motors act as a significant barrier against sound pollution. Another advantage is that a scooter battery can be quickly and quietly charged with a 12-volt battery from an automobile.
How do they work?
As we said, 250 cubic centimeters are about the maximum you can expect from a scooter. Typically, they operate through a rear axle and the minimum engine that qualifies as a scooter engine is the 50-cubic-centimeter one. Any engine smaller than that is referred to as a Go-Ped and makes up another category.
You have to remember the fact that new scooter engines will not work well at consistent speeds. The rider of a new scooter should alternate the speed about ten or twenty minutes on a highway to break it in. As long as you won’t go full throttle on the engine, those valves will work like new for years to come.
The battery will be great for a couple of years then fade or simply terminate altogether. A good prevention method would be to store the scooter in a warm place to prevent it from getting very cold.
The spark plug is another item that will tell you how the scooter works or why it does not work eventually. Spark plugs and scooters are not really the best of friends as sometimes a spark plug can die in an instant and at a time when the scooter’s operator is least expecting it. Make sure to replace the spark plug every fifteen hundreds miles just to be on the safe side.
Since a scooter’s engine works in a smaller capacity, the oil should be changed earlier than you would for a car. The recommended distance after which to perform an oil change is about five hundred miles.
How does CVT work?
Most of you have heard of CVT when researching a gearless scooter or an automatic car. The term stands for “Continuous Variable Transmission” and is one of the forms of automatic transmission which can be used on a two-wheeler as well as a four-wheeler.
After Leonardo Da Vinci drafted its first ever sketch in 1490, you simply need to fast forward for about 450 years and the first CVTs are seen on DAF cars in the 1950s. This characteristic got involved in the world of scooters in the 2000s.
Instead of using a traditional automatic transmission system which makes use of gears, CVT has two pulleys with variable diameters and connected by a belt or chain. One end of the pulley is connected to the engine while the other one stays attached to the wheels, where the power is delivered. As they come closer and closer, the belt or chain rides higher and higher in the air.
If that’s a scooter engine, what’s a moped?
A moped is classified as a bicycle-type vehicle used as an economical mode of transportation. Most states will classify any two-wheeled vehicle with an engine displacement that’s lower than 49 cubic centimeters as a moped. Other states will require mopeds to be equipped with pedals.
Engine-wise, mopeds and scooters make use of the same type of small motors for propulsion. However, there’s also a slight difference between them. A moped’s motor is designed to assist the rider with the pedaling part and it makes up for just a portion of the locomotive power. A scooter engine, on the other hand, will provide all of the propulsion, all the time.
This is because it uses an electrical charging system that has the ability to power both the ignition system and the lights, as well as provide fuel for the depleted battery. On the other hand, mopeds may be equipped with a basic electrical system but they lack the technological features of a scooter, many of them still requiring pedals to be ridden.
This difference in engine sizes and capacities also reflects on the wheel size. While scooters only use smaller-diameter wheels, the largest one being a maximum of 12 inches, the mopeds can even go for a maximum of 36-inch bicycle wheels.
What to expect from riding a scooter
If you have ever driven a stick shift car, you’re probably ready for the challenges that come with riding a scooter for the first time. The engine plays a big role in this due to the many steps you need to take in perfect order to start it.
We’re sure you’ve had this happen to you, right? You confidently put the car into gear, slowly release the clutch, give it a little gas, feel the engine coming to life then, in a split second, the car jerks aggressively and you feel powerless to stop it.
Now, imagine this would happen in a smaller two-wheels vehicle. While you don’t necessarily need to feel scared, you could probably end up dropping and scratching your brand new scooter. The thing you need to remember is that scooters are really built for efficiency, not for speed. This is great for new riders as limited power can make them feel more in control.
Ultimately, a scooter engine can provide a very good and safe riding experience for a beginner. Besides, more power typically comes at the cost of more fuel so this will end up costing you more money. Scooters are known for being very fuel-efficient, somewhere around the tune of 70+ mpg.
Another part that most people don’t know is about the way in which a scooter’s transmission works. They don’t rely on the motors’s RPM to increase and decrease their speed, so that’s why even though you twist the throttle, the sound of the engine doesn’t change. That’s what leads many people to think that the scooter has a power issue.