Scooter
Community

Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

Last post 05-17-2012 10:44 PM by Brighton Belle. 33 replies.
Page 1 of 3 (34 items) 1 2 3 Next >
Sort Posts: Previous Next
  • 05-01-2012 06:52 PM

    • Rob
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-02-2012
    • Lincolnshire UK
    • Posts 74

    Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

     I wanted to start a new thread, I know its going to be contentious, I know that it is going to throw up stories of 'my mate has 12K in a Vietnamese bodge job' and the other classic 'its held together by baked bean tins' , or the ever youthful 'if you look careful its wearing sandals and a strawhat'!

    There are most definitely poor restoration jobs out there, but they are not the sole reserve of Asian restorers, there are British, American and yes, God forbid, Australian crap restorers as well.

    It all depends on what you want as an individual and what you are willing to pay. For me personally, I couldnt see the point, paying £4500 out to a 'classic restorer' in the UK, only to have him buy the bike from SE Asia and resell it onto me at a vast profit.

    And its usually these 'classic restorers' who have comments on their web sites which state '80% of all vespa imports are Viet bodge jobs' suggesting that the consumer should protect themselves by buying a 'British restored scoot'. No, what that means is, dont buy your Vespa or Lambretta from South East Asia for £2000 , let us buy it for you, import it, pay the duties, register it and run it through the ministry of transport tests and sell it to you for £4500.

    Looking forward to hearing from you all.

    Cheers Rob

     

    PS - its good to talk!

  • 05-10-2012 12:11 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    Hi all, 

    I think the difference is Rob, you order a bike from a guy who lives in the same country as you and you later discover it's bodged, or it's an asian origin bike, then you can basically ruin that guy's rep in the scooter community. You can get trading standards involved, you can start civil litigation in the small claims court. Basically, you have recourse.

    How do you find out if your bike is originally from Asia? Well just check the V5 or order a heritage certificate for it. The lack of previous owners and date of first registration will give it away. So, a little homework and you aren't likely to fall into that trap.

    Of course businesses may well see an opportunity to flip a bodge, make it look less bodgey and then sell it as a UK bike. But again, if you are going to be paying nearly 5k for a scooter, you are going to want to see restoration photos from their shop, an invoice showing who they bought it from etc.

    Scott

  • 05-10-2012 02:03 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

     Welcome to the forum SGN Scott Smile

  • 05-10-2012 04:24 PM In reply to

    • Rob
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-02-2012
    • Lincolnshire UK
    • Posts 74

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

     Hi Scott, see this is where I disagree completely. You do have recourse, anywhere you are in the world if you are clever about how you pay for an item.

    Any restorer that is worth their salt is not going to insist that you pay by Western Union or Bank Transfer - only a fool and his money comes to mind!

    If any overseas seller of anything said to me, the only way I could buy their good was to pay by Western Union etc. I would simply jog on. There is no way I can claw my funds back (ruining a rep of somebody doesn’t cut it for me - I want my dough back).

    If all I had bought from PV was a box of bits , I would have cancelled the transaction with PayPal, lodged a dispute with the credit card company and I wouldn’t have been out of pocket at all.

    When you say is the bike originally from Asia? Little confused, do you mean imported from Europe in the 50's 60's 70's etc and restored or originally made? for example Vespa under license in Indonesia.

    Checking frame numbers is a dubious business, I wouldn’t go on just written evidence, I want to see a photograph, then off to scooterhelp.com or Bill Drake at Vespa Club GB and ask him to check the serial numbers. If its Italian great, if not, leave alone, that is my opinion. Purely relying on the V5 won’t cut it. It could easily be a barn find in Spain or Ireland and it would not have any previous registered owners (in the UK). I would always suggest go straight to the heritage sites and get the verification from there. Most people would be able to recognise a re-stamp (not to be confused with an overstamp).

    With regards to restoration photos - ordering the scooters provenance is something that anybody who is considering an overseas purchase should insist upon as part of the purchase. Picture of original donor bike, right through to final painting.

    Good points thought Scott about the heritage. Nice to see you are homing in on my posts.

    Cheers Rob      

  • 05-10-2012 11:55 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    Hi Rob,

    I have an Italian made Vespa Sprint, yet it has spent the last 44 years in Vietnam. To me, it's an Asian bike. It has probably covered a few hundred 1000km's easily in its lifetime. I also have a Dan Motors Indonesian PX. Perfectly fine bike to ride, quite rare here as well. 

    My point was really that you can get to the bottom of every bikes import history if you pay a few quid. The shop that claims the bike they are selling you is a UK bike (italian made or Scottish) that later turns out to have arrived from Vietnam has mis-represented the goods to you. Easy follow up in the courts.

    Now, you buy a bike from say Vietnam. When do you pay for it? When it arrives in dock? I doubt it very much. Companies are going to want money up front probably via Bank transfer. I doubt they will want Paypal as they would get hit with the fees. Can you cancel a transaction once you receive the goods? (I don't know as I don't use Paypal)

     

    Lets say you receive your bike and it's a lemon. What do you do? Instruct a Vietnamese lawyer to get your money back? That's going to be $5000 up front before he even puts pen to paper. The shop you bought it from bribes the judge to call it in their favour. It happens in places like this. Who pays wins. I don't know the ins and outs of the lammy situation but I doubt a full refund was offered or even rectification at the sellers expense. 

    My message is to buy from your home market whenever possible unless you really know the people involved and you are confident they will do the right thing should it not be up to standard. 

    Do you have any photos from PV of your frame completely stripped of paint Rob? Would love to see that. I've seen some shockers here! This was my mate's bike partially stripped! 

     

     

  • 05-11-2012 03:14 AM In reply to

    • Rob
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-02-2012
    • Lincolnshire UK
    • Posts 74

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

     Oi, where did you get those photos of my bike!!!! LoL.

    With regards to PayPal and credit / debit card, yes you can call in question goods standards on acceptance. I wouldn’t have ever completed a bank transfer. There is no recourse. It would be the same as the UK or Australia, although you could go to small claims court, you are not going to get your funds back any time soon. However under VISA and most other credit card agreements (internationally) there is distance selling legislation which protects your expenditure.

    If you order a printer from the Philippines , open the box and expect to find a lovely shiny new HP Printer all ready to attach to your laptop you open the box and then see a box of bits and an old lead to a kettle. That isn’t what you paid for. So you can have the credit card company (or PayPal) complete what is called a charge back. They will suspend the amount from accruing any interest. They will look at the invoice you received from the company and what is in the box. If what is in the box is not the same as what you paid, they take the funds (automatically) out of the sellers account and refund you. It’s a wonderful thing distance selling and purchaser protection.

    If Greg had sold me a duff bike, I would have had no hesitation in calling back in the credit card payment. If the restorer says, its Indonesia or Vietnam and I can’t take credit cards, that’s just untrue, I have been lucky enough to visit most of the ASEAN countries and I have always had no difficulties paying with Amex, Visa or MasterCard, (even in the markets) hell they even have ATM's!

    I love visiting SE Asia and just hate that so many restorers get a bad rap, when not necessarily warranted. Anybody is capable of a crap restoration. You can protect yourself from poor workmanship regardless of location. I would say, buy what you want, where you want. Do your research, be happy with who you are buying from and commit, but when you do, PROTECT yourself. Regardless of whether or not you are buying from Johnny Rockets Lambretta Restorers in Lambeth or Johnny Foreigner Lambretta Restorers in Changi Malaysia (if there is actually either one of those companies in existence I apologise profusely and do not advocate the purchase of a scooter or any other product from either LOL).

    Will put up some pictures of my bare frame etc. (Bike not mine, didn’t want to evoke mass vomiting)

    Speak later Scott.

    Rob

     

  • 05-11-2012 09:29 AM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    Rob:
     I wanted to start a new thread, I know its going to be contentious ..  
     

    Hmmm.  A whole debate from offshore ..

    Rob:  You live in the UK and while you say you've spent a lot of time in Asia and know the Asian restoration market, why are you posting this on an Aussie site? 

    Do you know which of the major western-market-oriented Asian operations sell into Australia?  Genuine questions - I know of one, but that's a personal acquaintance - i.e. anecdote not data.  Do the others really sell here? And if you offer names, what's the provenance of that? Have you spent time in the Australian market and classic scooter scene?  Not to deride your opinions, but you have one particular restorer's scoot, so naturally you'd be looking to confirm your obvious wisdom in picking that supplier.  Do you have a financial connection with that supplier? I'd bet you don't, but bona fides are important here.

    Yes, of course you're very very welcome here .. but you're grinding an axe, and so it's as well to make your expertise (or not) and bona fides clear.  No, I an't a moderator, I simply like to see potental conflicts of interest exposed so folk can make their own judgements.

    My bona fides?  I find the garish colour schemes of you scoot almost painful to look at.  I like to see original, or original-like, scoots and I think tose combinations are bastardisations not restorations .. but that's my taste and taste is just that - mine is not better than yours, merely different. Also, I'd never buy offshore like that, but then you've actually spent lotsa time there.  I try to source parts and accessories in Australia, and have done so to upgrade my suspension, pipe, rims, etc.  It's easier now the Aussie dollar is high - when I've asked for competive prices, I've got 'em .. when the part is unavailable here or far too expensive, I do source in Europe, UK or US -- why there? Because they have reasonable regulation (hard-won by consumers, for the most part).  Unregulated supply markets offer neither guarantee nor recourse, and I ain't risking my neck to save a few bucks.  Plus I like chatting to the local guys - I've learned a lot from GPS Imports and from Paul the Bitubo guy, and had a few laughs with them, too.  One of those calls found me my local PX mechanic - pure serendipity that he's super keen and walking distance from my house!

    SGN Scott - welcome too. I'm guessing you're the same as SGN Scott on MV?  Same sane and balanced reasoning, I see.  But beware, we're as mad as any on MV!!!

    Sydney / Vespa PX150 & GTS250ie / BMW R1200R
  • 05-11-2012 10:56 AM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    Caroanbill:

    Rob:
     I wanted to start a new thread, I know its going to be contentious ..  
     

    Hmmm.  A whole debate from offshore ..

     

     Mmmm ???  Wink

    Ride em hard-don't hardly ride em
  • 05-11-2012 11:12 AM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    I for one would like to see an end to this thread and topic...as in the end it's buyer beware as much has already been written and spoken of on this topic....and its each individuals experience when it comes to a restored one off scoot.

    Happy to talk about what unites us as a fellow scooterist ...and sure a classic scooter will always be in a class of its own within the scootering scene....so lets enjoy and share what we luv about the ride and the enjoyment of the ride.

    As I think its foolish talk engaging in a ping pong discussion when the ball is always going to be up in the air with no final fixed position...... with for and against bikes out of Asia....as my experience outcome was not a good one Im sure there are others who have had a good result and the best of luck to them.

    Lay it to rest and move on,speaking for myself.

    cheers Mike

  • 05-11-2012 11:32 AM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    .

     I hear your sentiment Mike and do agree. But and yes there is a but...............

    I believe in openness so the next poor punter doesn’t get stitched up .That is all.

     

    Cheers Nick

     

    Ride em hard-don't hardly ride em
  • 05-11-2012 01:38 PM In reply to

    • Rob
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-02-2012
    • Lincolnshire UK
    • Posts 74

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    1.     I understand from where you are coming from, but I want to make a couple of things clear. I am most definitely not an expert on Asian restorations, I wanted to comment directly on some of the scathing comments that I had read regarding Asian restorers. Almost damning each and every one, simply because they were from Asia. I was trying provide an opinion that buying solely a restored scooter (or interpretation of restoration) from ones home market doesn’t make you a scooter aficionado, or a purist. It doesn’t make one scooter; better than another. It provides choice. I love the enthusiasm of the scooter community, but I dislike the snobbery.

    Bona fides are important and I think at this point to ensure credibility of no connection to the one restorer in particular. My background is Healthcare Recruitment. I have visited SE Asia for the purpose of recruitment, no other reason. If I gave the impression that I have spent significant time there, that is incorrect on my behalf , I wish to clarify immediately that I have visited various SE Asian countries on numerous occasions for periods up to 6 weeks at a time for the purpose of work and leisure (family vacations etc.). The most time spent in SE Asia has been the Philippines and with my connections in recruitment and HR you will understand the obvious connection.

    Why post on an Australian site - simple, it’s a fun site, I believe that scootering; the passion and enthusiasm crosses all boundaries whether they be cultural or geographical.

    Please find my linkedin page for reference regarding my personal background. You will also see a continued attachment to Australia also, maybe that will also explain the connection to Australia.

    You pose the question regarding my personal exposure to the Australian market or classic scene, from a commercial aspect, no most definitely not, I have no experience. On the classic scene front, from a personal prospective unfortunately not, as I have mentioned in other posts, the scene in Australia seems active, vibrant and fun. With the lifestyle and sunshine that Australia offers it seems like the perfect place to enjoy a scooter, whether classic or modern.

    Symposiums which stimulate debate, discussion and dialogue are all elements which I believe invigorate forum sites, I apologise if you mistook 'axe grinding' for what was intended as simply an alternative consideration of the Asian restoration market; that not all restorers were awful and that buying from your home market was not a guarantee of a perfect restoration (or interpretation of restoration).

    Moving on, I am with Mike, it’s a matter of personal opinion. I am happy to move on and see an end to this thread. I feel that I have made my point and importantly stressed and attempted to prove that I have NO connection with any commercial activity or market associated with the scooter industry.

    The only thing on your post which did really hurt was the comments about my bike, however as you say, it’s your personal taste. I love my scooter; I have wanted one exactly like this for a long time. Difference is what makes life and each and every one of us unique - which I believe is a wonderful thing. Sometimes though, descriptions such as ‘garish’, 'almost painful to look at' and 'bastardisations' are not simply observations but personal annotations and observations which could quite easily be taken or meant offend or provoke. A simple response to the appearance of my scooter would have been ' I like to see original, or original-like, scoots and I think tose (sic) combinations are ......... not restorations' , it’s the same sentiment from a personal perspective and observational point of view, but not potentially insensitive to the poster. I felt the comment almost had a ‘troll’ characteristic and was intended to antagonise. I have taken a time to compose a response and do not believe (or hope) that they were your intentions on this occasion

    I happily put this post to bed and promise not to comment on your Scooters appearance!!!!!!!!!! LoL

    Moving on.................

    Rob

    PS, nearly forgot here is my linkedin page. http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/rob-walker/4b/563/473

     

  • 05-11-2012 01:41 PM In reply to

    • Rob
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-02-2012
    • Lincolnshire UK
    • Posts 74

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

     Mike, with you on this completely. Ready to put this to bed.

    I wont be responding to any other posts on this thread. Hopefully Nick will not think me awful if I continue to post on other threads!

  • 05-11-2012 01:56 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    SleepSleepSleepSleepSleep 

  • 05-11-2012 02:00 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    I'm a bit of  forum junkie and the asian threads kind of caught my eye. Saying that, when I was in Perth, I saw a few crotch rockets but no Vespas so I was a bit curious as to what kind of scene you guys have. 

    If anyone is heading over this way in the future, give me a shout. I might even let you borrow the PX for a few beers in return and you can have some fun riding in the chaos of Saigon. Seriously mean that. Also, if you have a problem with something that you order from say ScootRS, then let me know as I have only experienced Randall trying to solve problems. I can always follow it up for you. 

    Next time I'm over in Perth to see my Sis, would be great to meet up with any of you guys in that area. She's actually down in Secret Harbour but I can jump on the train and get to the city. 

    Cheers.

  • 05-11-2012 02:28 PM In reply to

    Re: Classic restorations - being ripped off isnt only the reserve of SouthEast Asians

    Rob:

    Nick ...

    Nick ...

    Nick ...

    ... promise not to comment on your Scooters (sic) appearance

    Hey Rob, give Nick a break!  It was me, not him that made an observation about your scoot.  I think Nick liked your scoot. Me? I stand by my observation - really it's prejudiced (yes, that's a confession) on the fact that original Vespas / Douglas / AllStates were soooooo plain.  But, for some unaccountable and unfathomable reason, I like the 'rust-orations' and some rat-scoots ... and I did leave out that my own taste is restrained to the point of dull dull dull ... and maybe duller yet ... and you can indeed piddle (metaphorically) on my PX or GTS - I won't take offence. I love the white, just white, treatment of my mate's TV175 resto, and my own old bikes were 'original' (even if my current BMW is waaaay overfarkelled, it's aslo restrained / dull). I intend to keep the PX looking original too (and I have all the original bits to return it to stock at any time).  It's just taste, not any sort of judgement. Vive la difference!

    Hey, I'm an economist ferfecksake - you can all take the piss!!

     

     

    Sydney / Vespa PX150 & GTS250ie / BMW R1200R
Page 1 of 3 (34 items) 1 2 3 Next >

 

ADVERTISEMENT

©2007 ScooterSales.com.au