Ever since he rode Stuart Owen’s Lambretta demonstrator, Tim Mason had always wanted a Targa Twin powered Lambretta – and now he has one in his collection…
Tim is no stranger to scooters and we’ve featured bikes that he’s had a hand in restoring in previous issues of Classic Scooterist – remember the American-spec SX200 we featured last year? Or Spencer Coe’s brown/cream S-Type, featured in the issue before last? And it’s not just other people’s scooters that he’s been associated with – he has a shed-full of interesting bikes of his own.
But in this feature we’re looking at one of his most recent projects – his Lambretta Targa Twin; it was completed in 2015, but because Tim isn’t really into the rally scene, it hasn’t been seen publicly at many (if any) events. And although only finished last year, he’s actually owned this scooter for about 13 or 14 years since he originally purchased it for around £600 (it was so long ago now, his memory has gotten a little hazy).
FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS
Tim’s scooter originally started life as a Lambretta Li 125 Special, but it has since come a long way in its lifetime. It has been lovingly built by his brother, Eddie, with Tim’s assistance, and has taken about six months to finish it off. At a quick glance the deep red paintwork might appear a little understated to some, but it’s subtle finish was carefully crafted by Mark at Jubilee Scooters, who has had a hand in spraying many of Tim’s scooters over the years – and what a good job he’s made of this one.
Street Racers are Tim’s favourite style of scooter; and of course the heart of any Street Racer is the motor (Targa engine #48 in Tim’s case). “All Targa’s are supplied with a twin coil and the leads are too short” says Tim; “So I welded a bracket to the frame (as race riders do) and neatened things up a bit. The engine is married to a CS Engineering hydraulic clutch, which to be honest, I’ve had a few problems with getting the correct set-up, as the engine was supplied with the wrong clutch plate steels. This was the hardest part of the project to sort out”.
One ‘must’ with having a Targa Twin engine fitted to your scooter (or to any highly-tuned scooter for that matter) is to being able to know what temperature the engine is running at, so Tim has an EGT (Exhaust Gas Temperature) gauge fitted in order to monitor for any overheating that may occur. Another ‘must’ for any highly tuned scooter is to have plenty of stopping power available – in Tim’s case, this comes courtesy of a Frank Sanderson double disk setup. Elsewhere, other finishing touches enhance the scooter’s looks, from simple things like a headlamp grill, through to a Trailtech digital speed/tacho unit complete with gear shirt lights. There’s even a split seat to make the scooter more user-friendly.
As already mentioned, Tim doesn’t do mainstream scooter rallies, so you’re unlikely to see him or his scooter in the flesh at any of those events. He does like his scooter sport though, so you may have the opportunity to admire his scooter at some of these race meetings – or even at local rallies in Derbyshire (which is where he’s based). Keep an eye out for him…