Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Flattery Will Get You Somewhere

I'll start by saying that the quote "Imitation is the highest form of flattery" is true. And folks, I'm feeling pretty darned flattered right now.

A few months back, a retired gentleman named Hal dropped in at work looking for me. He had been sent to meet me by Bill Rowland at P.A. Power Equipment to talk about my Big Ruckus scooter. We ended up in the parking lot with me running the best sales pitch that I could about this style of scooter. Hal seemed interested, but would have to "clear it with the wife" before making a purchase. One of his main questions was about leg room, since he's about 6 inches taller than me. I pointed out that a great feature of this scooter was the adjustable seat. He could simply pull a lever and slide the seat back to where it would best suit him.

Now, I had heard that a BR had been sold with a set-up like mine, but I wasn't positive that it was the same guy that I had spoken with, so when I saw him ride in to the Honda dealership parking lot today, I was pleased.

I had run out this morning to talk with the owner of P.A. Power Equipment about linking them to my blog site, and after talking with the salesman for a while, I saw the scooter turning into the parking lot. Bill said that it was indeed Hal, and that he was coming in for servicing.

Now mind you, I had only met this guy once, and to my surprise, as he got off the scooter, he walked over and called me by name while shaking my hand and told me how much he loved his Big Ruckus. I was impressed that he remembered my name. He had the doggone thing looking just like mine, with the exception of a different tint to the windscreen. I was flattered to say the least.

It seemed funny that I had to work a little trial and error to get Mule set up the way that I like it, and that by using my scoot as an example, someone else was able to add the same components to theirs, and "wha-la" they have something that works well for them. It seems so simple now when I look at it.

I didn't let on though, that I'm going to be adding leg shields, and some mirror mount hand guards soon, because I didn't want to get beaten to the punch. I won't mind the trial and error approach now that I've seen that what I do works. And for sure, when I'm done with my add-on's, I will call Hal to let him check it out. I might even gain a friend while I'm at it.

But first, it's time to get out to the shop and start cutting out leg shield templates.

Have fun,


Blogger CodyandMichelle said...

That's pretty cool Bill! One thing I like about the bikes I see on the Modern Vespa website, though many are the same bikes and same colors, almost every scooterist puts their own personality into it, with bling and/or modifications. Which makes each scooter unique to that individual. I have a buddy with the same GT as me up in OK, we do a lot of the same things to our bikes, but put them side by side and there is still plenty of differences. It would kind of bug me if someone copied me to the letter, hopefully with your new additions it'll separate the looks of your bikes.

1:24 PM  
Blogger Sarch said...

One thing about bikes...even if his resembles yours right now (and you are right Bill, it IS a huge form of flattery) it won't for long. Bikes just take on too much of their owner's personality for them to match one another for long.

7:10 PM  
Blogger Combatscoot said...

I like the legshield idea. I got turned-onto them when I was riding Russian sidecar bikes. Really cut the cold wind and splashing water off the legs.

6:50 AM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

It won't take much to create a look that is distinctly mine. My Sportster is definitely "me".

I'm aiming for ultimate "utility scooter" look. It's going to be a fun project.

To see a carbon copy of what I own was cool, but in a way, it lit a fire under me to get busy with my upgrade project.

Fabricating the leg shields will be fun, especially if I get the look that I want. That should put some serious personality into my scooter's look.

The look that I want leans heavily toward the military bikes and hacks from way back in the day.

I'll lay this project out in detail in a future post.

Have fun,

6:17 PM  
Blogger CodyandMichelle said...

You know Bill, I was reading your answer to my comment, when it dawned on me,....I've never seen pics of your scoots!?! So i went a searching. There i see the bookends, Nov 06. All i can say is I LOVE YOUR VESPA!!. That's the shizzle, nothing against the Ruckus, but I luv Vespas, old/modern, makes no diff, and i think the color rocks. You need to add some more pics on your blog dude! especially for us newbies to your blog.

3:34 PM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

Will do! I hope to get some shots of all of my projects up soon. Stay tuned.

Have fun,

6:41 PM  
Blogger Biker Betty said...

Bill, once you finish your add-ons, I hope you will have "before" and "after" photos of the mule. Those leg shields sound neat. I've told my husband just recently that I want hand shields for my motorcycle. I have to do research, as I'm not sure they are available for my bike. I'm betting there is something generic though.

It gives a person warm fuzzies to help another get into a loved hobby. While Hal's scooter looks a lot like yours, I bet over time he will add his own ideas. When a person is first venturing out into something new, most like to initally copy what works and then experiment once their feet are wet.

I look forward to seeing your new improvements,

Betty :)

9:53 PM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

You are so right. I'm not the first to add these types of farkles to my bike, just the first to do it around here.

Before long, Hal's scoot will have a look of it's own. I just helped to create a base for him to work from.

Have fun,

6:10 PM  

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