These days most of my writing and riding centers on my big scooter. It's my main ride and has taken me to work, the doctor and Bike Nights at Gilligan's. Resting peacefully in the garage is the scooter that started it all, my 150cc scooter from GSMotorworks. It's time for maintenance came due the other day and I hauled it out of the garage to change the rubber belt that makes it move.

About six years ago I replaced the original drive belt with one made by Gates, an American company. It was made with the latest fibers and rubber compounds and promised a long life. What made me laugh was that when I received it in the mail I noted that it was stamped “Made in China” on it. Geez, what isn't these days?

The scooter was beginning to make noises that pointed towards the belt slipping so I decided that it was time to be changed. After six years since I put it in I was a little afraid that the rubber had become brittle and would begin to crack. After that a belt might possibly break and leave me stranded so I felt the prudent thing to do would be to put the belt I had in storage for it into the scooter.

Without getting into the tedious steps involved with installing a belt I can tell you two things. One, you can't have enough tools if you're going to work on a scooter. I had to involve my electric impact gun, Craftsman Torque Wrench and a special puller I had bought to work on the big scooter a few months ago. Two, despite the claims not all things out of China are trash. I inspected all the pieces inside that make the scooter move and despite their age and mileage they are in good working order.

I can confidently predict another six years of usage from this scooter and am looking forward to every mile. Not only is it useful but it makes me smile when I use it. I want to have it around for a good long time.