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From Moa point - Capital Adventures
April 26th, 2008
07:23 pm
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From Moa point



41deg 20'30" S, 174deg 48'34"E, facing  west.

My primary mode of transport is a 50cc two-stroke motor scooter. It gets me to work and back without too much drama, costs around about $5 a week to run (keeping the whole carbon footprint down too) and is really easy to find or occasionally invent a parking space for. It's a bit limiting in some respects - foul weather will keep me off it and if I need to go somewhere in costume it's not so great - but that's why buses and taxis were invented.
Being a tiny wee two-stroke engine, it can get really gungy and refuse to start if it only goes on short trips and never gets really warmed up properly. So today I went for a bit of a blat 'round the peninsular, something I haven't done on the scooter before.

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From:wcg
Date:April 26th, 2008 01:14 pm (UTC)
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Gorgeous scenery.

I don't think I could get a 50 cc two-stroke scooter even if I wanted one. But I remember a time when they represented great freedom.
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From:dianavilliers
Date:April 26th, 2008 01:49 pm (UTC)
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Are they just not available there?
They're becoming more and more common here - I think it's a combination of petrol price, environmental awareness and congestion/parking issues.

Edited at 2008-04-26 01:53 pm (UTC)
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From:wcg
Date:April 26th, 2008 02:10 pm (UTC)
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The US outlawed 2-stroke engines about 10 years ago. Even my lawnmower is a 4-stroke.

I could get a little scooter, but it doesn't go fast enough to make the minimum speed on the highways I have to drive on to get to work. If I'm just going somewhere local enough that a scooter would make sense, I may as well either walk or ride my bicycle.
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From:dianavilliers
Date:April 26th, 2008 02:27 pm (UTC)
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In Christchurch I was quite happy to get around by bike, but my legs just aren't up to the hills in Wellington. My poor old bike is mouldering in the porch.
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From:wcg
Date:April 26th, 2008 02:30 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, those hills you have would knock me flat if I tried them on a bike. Back in my wayward youth I used to ride hills like that when I was on Okinawa, but that was several decades ago. Now I'd get there faster by walking.
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From:micheinnz
Date:April 27th, 2008 08:48 am (UTC)
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What on _earth_ were 2-strokes outlawed for? Bloody useful little things.
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From:dianavilliers
Date:April 27th, 2008 10:03 am (UTC)
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They are somewhat grubby, particularly when they're cold. I'm just surprised that they were outlawed over the whole US.
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From:wcg
Date:April 27th, 2008 02:52 pm (UTC)
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Air pollutants. 2-stroke engines have to include lubricating oil in the combustion mixture, but the oil itself doesn't burn. So you get little clouds of oil smoke. 4-stroke engines don't do this.
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From:micheinnz
Date:April 27th, 2008 07:51 pm (UTC)
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Ah, that makes sense. Thanks.
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