Ruckus Scooter Love

Ruckus Scooter Love
Scootin' For A Slower Pace of Life...

Sunday, May 6, 2012

New Scooter Blues and Ride Report

Well today I picked up my 2010 Honda Elite 110 scooter. Same date 2 years ago that I picked up my 2009 Ruckus, same dealership, same salesperson.

Anyway, we went over to the Honda dealership and got the Honda Elite 110. The weather was threatening thunderstorms, but it held out until the last ten minutes of my ride home. More about that later.

I rode it from Maysville, Kentucky, over the Ohio River bridge, into Aberdeen, Ohio, and up Rt. 52 along the Ohio River to my access roads up into my county of residence.

Do I sound "unenthusiastic"? I should because I feel "unenthusiastic". And I'm not sure why. Once I get to blathering here I may finally understand why. Or maybe it's just a need for sleep, or the weather, or whatever. But I feel "unenthusiastic".

So here's my ride experience, for what it's worth, which ain't much:

First off, the Honda dealership on a Saturday was swarming with people buying big, expensive motorcycles. If they weren't buying them they were riding them in and out of the parking lot flashing their rides. Everyone was "geared up" to the hilt and most of their attire cost more than my scooter itself.

"Bitter, party of one?" Maybe. It gets worse...

So my partner followed me out of the dealership in the SUV and insisted riding behind me to "make sure I was safe". Hey, I can't complain about that! That is SO sweet, ya know?

I was fine with it because the area was swarming with so many damn cars that my head was spinning. A six lane highway, busy as rush hour, none of which I am used to riding in. (Yeah, ends in a preposition, so shoot me.)

Now the scoot has 6 miles on it (and I put those there when I test rode it) so I am not wanting to "gun it" right away, but traffic is fast and heavy. I am already hating riding like this and I pull over into a parking lot after two miles and have a "hissy fit" (see below).

Before it's all over I am riding on the side of the road because these idiots are doing 60mph in a 45mph zone. We get down the hill to the river and go up over the bridge to Ohio.

Now it's getting better, right?

Should be, anyhow. The road is a scenic 2 lane rural road alongside the Ohio River and cars are once again in great abundance. Not usual for this road, but it's Saturday and it's not raining. Not yet anyway.

Everybody wants to pass my ass. I am up to 40mph and fighting side winds and feel the scoot about to take flight. Every buffet of wind moves me along and not in a good way. I am not having fun.

All I am thinking about is that I want my Ruckus back and that I am really only a slow, solitary, pokey-along sort of rider and why the hell am I out here with these cars?

Then here come the weekend "bikers" in mass quantity. Fully dressed out Harley-Davidsons with riders (once again) wearing gear that costs more than my scooter. Heck, their saddlebags cost more than my scooter. Doctors, lawyers, CEOs out trying to look like Peter Fonda in "Easy Rider", yep. They are getting on my nerves!

"Bitter, party of one?" Shut up, Conscience!

I feel like a worm, like a nerd, like a loser. I am ready to cry and give up this scooter and scootering forever. Any aspirations to ride a motorcycle in the future fade away into oblivious, hollow, laughter.

I just want this ride to be over and I want my Ruckus back!!!

I'm not supposed to feel like this, right? I am supposed to be all happy and excited and enthusiastic about being able to go 53mph now, have more storage room, have more power, have more range on my rides, etc. But I am not.

So we mosey along this road and eventually come to a side road that heads up the grade into the heart of the county. It is 7 miles of twisty ups and downs that snake along a creek bed and farmlands. Very few cars.

It is nice and the Elite is pulling the hills pretty well.

The Ruck would be struggling at 20mph tops and the Elite is staying at my now-average-cruising-speed of 30mph. I can't seem to go faster than that and have to admit that even though it "feels like 70mph" it feels just a tad less like that on the Elite over the Ruckus.

That is not saying much, but there ya go.

Hey, I'm 40 miles into the ride and my butt is not hurting as much as it would have on the Ruckus.

That's something, isn't it?

Once up all this we are into town and heading down the 12 mile home stretch. I get to a particularly steep hill in Amish country and the Elite zooms right up it. I am starting to like her a little. Just a tad.

Then the sky opens up and it is raining like all get out! I am not wearing rain gear and I am getting soaked to the skin. The rain is coming down so hard it feels like little hail stones. I pull over on the side of the road under a big bush to keep some of it off of me. The scooter is easy to manipulate and drag into the bush's protective undergrowth.

Hey, that's something, isn't it?

All right, so 5 miles later I get to the driveway and pull it into the garage. It winds down and shuts off and it smells like a new engine smells. It's black skin is glistening with water droplets and it sparkles like fine jewelery.

That's nice. I like that.

I look at it and I think, there's nothing to do to it. It is "just perfect" and not rough and tumble looking like a Ruckus. I can't even find a spot to hang my Scooter Diva Gremlin Bell!!

I miss my Ruckus. I wish I did not have to sell it to get this scooter too. I know that's it. But I had no choice. So I already have it in my head to save up for a used Ruckus to keep the Elite company.

I want to give the Elite a chance. I really do. I just had a day of fighting traffic, my own inner demons, and the weather. I am miffed that I feel the way I do and I am not sure what it means or why it is.

I don't think it's "buyer's remorse" as this is a really nice scooter!
Right now I think I will like the positive things that the Elite offers. I am going to try to do so.

It's just that this blog is called "Ruckus Scooter Love" for a reason: there's scootin', then there's ridin' a Ruckus!

But tomorrow, if the sun comes out and it doesn't rain like it has been doing all week, I am taking the Elite out for another long spin.

Now, that's something, isn't it?


  1. I feel your pain. I think sometimes we build up the hype of the 'new' bike or scooter and then when we get it, it isn't exactly what we dreamed.

    I experienced this yesterday. We happened across a used 2009 Bonneville SE and it had been a dream bike of mine for so long and the price was so right we bought it. I rode it the 40 miles home and kept comparing it to my Gladius (which is a lot sportier)

    I too can't afford both and will have to sell one. Now I have to weigh the pros and cons of each to see which one to sell. I am not sure what to do. I will feel bad if I sell the Bonneville since we just bought it. Yikes, too much pressure.

    I hope you get out on your elite soon and feel the love.

    I am glad I found your blog through Pam and look forward to following your adventures.

    1. Dilemna is right! I think I will like the Elite A LOT. I did quite a bit of research and some test riding before I selected it. A lot of my story about yesterday was "tongue-in-cheek" humor and it really was "some kind of wild ride" home. Actually, it was awesome!

      Hope you figure out which way to go. I am glad you are connected and I am also checking out your blog!


    2. Trobairitz you bought a Bonny! Holy doodle. Funny how thing you want the most may not be the right one at all. I still love the look of the Bonneville, but kind of like the Ducati Diavel in a big way.

    3. DEB: I am glad you are liking the Elite. I enjoyed reading about your wild ride.

      DAR: When I have time I'll be doing a blog post on it. Suffice it to say Max isn't going anywhere and now I have a Bonnie to sell when the title comes in from the DMV in a few weeks.

      I liken it to hearing about how great a movie is and then when you actually see it, it isn't as great as you thought it would be. Didn't live up to the hype. Although I've ridden it 150 miles or so, so it is things we wouldn't have found out on a quick test ride.

  2. Deb.. Well you've had one heck of a first ride. Sorry to learn of it, BUT - the good news is you've gone through the worst and both of you came through with flying colors!
    Let the "Easy Riders" go... folks like we have nothing to prove. We am, wot we am, and it's better then most. Definitely better than those who need "outside" proof that their inner side is worth some small coins.
    You will love the Elite. It IS snappy on the take off - as many a car at a red light has learned (to their embarrassment) at red lights. Take no prisoners!
    It can take hills too, even with the two of us on, the slowest she's climbed has been 43 - on a steep, long climb. Have faith. Worry not the wind buffets. She'll snap right back. We have to cross a bridge to get into town and 30-35 mph gusts are standard routine - on a metal grate, no less. A snap.
    Go in peace, internally as well as externally.
    It'll all work out great.

    May I give some unsolicited advice re: breaking the scoot in?
    Regardless of what anyone says, for the first 600 miles, always be accelerating or have the throttle closed down. Learned this from old-time mechanics. The worst thing for new parts is to fly around loosely. By continually accelerating, you keep pressure on everything and nothing is flying loose. By snapping the throttle closed, you suck oil up into the cylinders, thereby flushing all the many small particles that need to wear smooth. So - accelerate, close throttle. Slow down. Accelerate, close throttle. My '88 Spider went almost 200,000 without ever starting to burn oil.
    My two, okay, make it three cents worth.

    1. Yeah, it does feel like a bunny rabbit on speed! I am feeling that Elite love! I'd like to know what that rubber thingie is supposed to do in the right side of the glove box. Have you figured it out? I'd like to rip it out now!

      I will post more of my Elite "road test" hoopla soon!

  3. Awww Deb! I think the anticipation of getting the scooter makes it bitter sweet when you finally get it. I felt the same way when I completed my DMV motorcycle ride test, in my class we all celebrated and when I finished the road test it was me all alone thinking well that's that. As for the motorcycle posers PHOOEY to them! They may have all the expensive gear & trillion dollar machine, but that does not make them good riders, in fact most of them only insure their machines when the weather is nice.

    It takes a lot of skill to manoeuvre a smaller cc machine like your stunningly gorgeous Elite out on the road with cagers who don't give a rip about what your riding. I was out on a large group ride today and seriously the Harley's make me annoyed, they are too damn loud and riding behind them sucks, my ears were ringing. I always catch a hint of "Your not riding a Harley so get lost" . Hell I would rather be a year round rider on a secondhand Honda than someone who is too afraid to ride their rig in the rain.

    Once you get out on your little black she-devil for a bit and do some riding you'll fall in love with her and be feeling scooter zen sooner than you know it. Sending you a moto hug - and if we lived closer I would go riding with ya!

    1. My comment boxes are messed guys bear with me here, ok? LOL

      Dar-You are so funny about the Harley riders. I hate to admit it, but it seems to be largely spot on!

      On our route yesterday we stopped at a winery along the river for a break (no sampling!) and about 8 of them were lined up in the parking lot. All brand shiney new. All decked out in new leather luggage. But the thing I noticed most was that the tires were not dirty! Showroom clean! Fair weather riders is right I guess!

      I think with cagers on the superhighway of life-I felt ok pulling over on a 49cc to save my life. On the 110cc I feel sort of embarrassed, ya know? Then past that I don't care because I ride defensively no matter what it takes. Ha!

      Pretty soon I'll be taking the lane on 45-50mph roads if necessary. Most of my riding is on back roads and I think that will always be, no matter what size machine I may be riding. I just love that experience and that's why I ride.

      I am really happy about this scoot and think I will love riding it. I have come to accept that fact that one machine cannot fulfill all riding needs and that's why God made Craigslist and Cycletrader!

      The Elite is a full-fledged, do-it-all classic scooter. Next will come something to fill out the next phase of riding.I know you know what I mean there!

      Yeah, come on over and let's ride! :=)

    2. Deb I love ya girl! That's the spunk I love to see. Hey never be worried about pulling over, because i would rather let them go by and be happy and comfortable on the road. I do it on my bike as well.

      As for the fellows who ride a bike full of farkles, when they can hack riding my daily commute in all weather then maybe I will let the fairweather road princesses into my club -lol. I hate it when people think they are better just because they ride a certain well marketted bike. A few of my friends ride them and they are awesome people and have bought into all of the hoopla.

      Fall in love with your she-devil scooter and think about the 'other' 2wheels for the future.

    3. Should have read: A few of my friends ride them and they are awesome people and have NOT bought into all of the hoopla.

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  5. Deb... The answer to your question is...... Drum roll...... a water bottle holder!!!
    So, do with it what you wish.
    Ciao, Mike.

    1. Goofy place for a water bottle! Think I'll rip it out...

  6. Deb:

    congrats on your new Elite. I let the fools pass, even in the car I don't like to speed as I am always stopping for photos. I would rather the fool be "IN FRONT", rather than tailgating behind. It's just easier that way. Go on a long ride on a country road, bring a snack and find a nice spot to chill out and admire the scenery.

    Riding the Wet Coast
    My Flickr // My YouTube

    1. Yeah, I'm planning to do just that as soon as the rains pass and I can get free from chores!

  7. Damn those chores! The real love affair will start soon enough. Much better to pull over than feel intimidated. Don't let the RUBs (pron. roobs, means rich urban bikers) get you down. They like to get all decked out, 'cause they are trying to play a role, but they usually aren't very good riders. They tend to travel in packs, too. All part of the "look at me, I'm a bad-ass biker" game. Believe me, I've passed my share of them on US-50 in West Virginia. That's not to say all big groups are like that, but here in the Metro DC area, there are quite a few of them.