If you’re looking for a fast kick scooter, check our guide on Lucky Pro Scooters, but if you want a faster moped, what should you do? Most mopeds could go faster but they are actually limited from the factory, so you will have to check if your moped has restricted exhaustion, carburetor, or if the CDI is limiting performance.
Derestricting your moped
Mopeds would go faster if they weren’t restricted for certain purposes. Coming straight out of the factory, the speed of a moped is at its maximum but then it’s limited to comply to some situations, and one of the things a moped needs to follow is legislation. Thus, different countries come with different speed limits, and if you live in a state where the speed limit is higher than your moped can reach, you can modify it to get to higher speeds.
However, you should know that when de-restricting your scooter without having the appropriate driving license for that power and speed will be illegal. It’s not all about the fines that you can get, but you also risk getting in accidents and seriously injuring yourself, so before you modify anything to your moped make sure it’s safe and legal.
When you get a moped it already comes with some parts installed by a third party. This is usually a kit containing many electrical parts. But there can also be removed parts, and if that’s the case, you also need to get them from your vendor when you first buy the moped, because they’re also yours.
The speed limit laws are the most common ones and most people that want to modify their scooters are doing that because they want to get past this issue. When producing the moped the manufacturer needs to be sure that the vehicle doesn’t exceed the country’s speed limit. But manufacturers also want to create mopeds that accelerate well.
As you might notice, that is something contradictory, because mopeds that accelerate fast are usually capable of getting to high speeds as well. So, in order to let a moped accelerate fast and also keep it within law limits, there are restrictions put in place on the vehicle so that it gets the validation that it can run in the country it’s sold.
There are different ways in which the manufacturer or third parties can modify scooters and these can be either through adding new parts or removing and replacing older ones. If your moped has added parts then it’s easier for you to modify it.
Some examples of added restrictions are exhaust dummy pipes, variomatic rings, and carburetor restrictions. However, when pieces get removed or replaced, it’s harder to modify them. When you’re dealing with something like that you need to purchase a new part that’s not restricted and you need to tinker a lot.
One of the hardest things to change is an electronically limited CDI, but things like increased length exhaust manifolds will also cause issues with performance. Managing to modify these restrictions will allow your moped to get to higher speeds and higher acceleration. You will observe that fuel consumption increases, but that is to be expected.
Modify the exhaust
Most mopeds come with this sort of restriction, where the exhaust doesn’t allow you to catch much speed. Stock exhausts usually have a dummy pipe that won’t work or a little piece welded on the downpipe so that the diameter is decreased.
To remove the dummy pipe you have to cut it off using a precise tool like a micro grinder. Furthermore, you need to cut it off right close to the manifold, and the hole that’s left behind it has to be closed. Most people weld a washer onto the hole to cover it. You can also choose the option to buy unrestricted manifolds. They are a bit more difficult to install but you will just need to bolt them on.
Some people prefer to do all of that in disguise, so they weld the dummy pipe back. When it comes to diameter restrictions, you will often find that on after-market exhausts. Removing such a restriction is easier and you won’t have to weld anything.
But you still need to grind off the welding spot where the restriction is placed, so it can come off easily. You also need to make sure the piece doesn’t fall into the manifold, and to avoid that from happening, build a hook out of wire and keep it in place.
There are also other types of exhaust restrictions that manufacturers apply. Some prefer to use a manifold that is too long and that degreases the gas flow. This will, in turn, reduce the performance, and it will also consume too much fuel. So you can get a shortened exhaust manifold that will do wonders for your moped.
You can also find restrictions in the exhaust silencer, usually on aftermarket exhausts. You can just disassemble the silencer and remove the restriction.
Change the carburetor
Being the piece that’s responsible for giving the needed mix of gas and air to the cylinder, the performance of the carburetor will also influence how the moped works. Some mopeds have a weak carburetor that doesn’t give the proper mix to the engine, or it is restricted from doing so.
Some mopeds have air supply restrictions and throttle opening ones that don’t allow the moped to get to high speeds. If you think that’s the case with your moped too, the air supply restriction can easily be found.
You just need to remove the hose from the air filter and see if there are any plates there preventing air from flowing smoothly in the carburetor when you’re opening the throttle.
When dealing with a throttle opening restriction, you need to know that it prevents the carburetor from fully opening. This is done with the help of a limiter that blocks the slider inside and stops it from moving. You just need to remove the limiter and the slider will then move freely.
Don’t forget to always wear protective gear, and to do the job right. Furthermore, make sure that what you’re doing isn’t violating any laws in your state.
Another thing to consider is that when changing the carburetor or its capabilities, you also need to change the intake manifold because it isn’t able to cope with the more powerful carburetor. Furthermore, in some cases, the manifold is too small for the initial carburetor, so it needs to be replaced anyway.
Carburetors come with a stock diameter of 12mm, and that means you will need the manifold to have the same diameter in its narrowest point. If the manifold is smaller than that the carburetor won’t be able to work at its full capacity. Fortunately, you can find cheap manifolds that work with carburetors that are 22mm wide.
Changing the CDI
The Capacitor Discharge Ignition (CDI) is a piece of electronics used for handling the ignition of a moped. This piece of electronics, when it’s designed to limit the power of the engine, will stop the engine from revving any higher, when the engine power hits a certain value. It does that by not providing the ignition of the spark plug furthermore.
You thus have to change this piece with one that isn’t restricted, and fortunately for you, it’s not the kind of modification that will damage the overall performance of your moped’s engine. You won’t be able to modify the existing CDI by yourself so you will have to purchase another one for about $50.
Remove the catalyst
Most of the times a moped is restricted from going faster than it could and that is due to many factors. One of these is to protect the environment better and to do that, scooters use a catalyst that is used on the exhaust.
This catalyst doesn’t directly restrict a moped’s power but those that tune mopeds say that you should remove it anyway. That is because catalysts have to operate at high temperatures to do well, but these temperatures will have to be avoided when you’re increasing the performance of your vehicle, and as a result, the catalyst will be useless.
It will be a difficult task getting rid of the catalyst because you need to cut the exhaust, remove it, and then weld the exhaust back together. That is why you could think that removing it is not that useful, but you can do it if you want to get even more power.