Matt’s Moped Madness

So I was moping the other day how I have 12 mopeds in my shed and they are pretty much all in a state of disrepair, but fortunately most are fairly straightforward projects and I have most of the pieces to get them done. The key element I currently lack is time to wrench.

Now on the other hand, super-cuperteen, mr. matto, has a lot of really big, mostly very scary projects. Matt came from building race cars and has been a life-time tinkerer (lego constructions consuming rooms, or so I’m told). His first moped was a Puch AD, but he quickly dropped that and built a mean old magnum.

You’ve seen it in old posts, but this bike really is impressive. It wasn’t quite so pretty when it first hit the streets back in 2008, but it was FAST. Remember back when Tommy hit 70 on his metra 80 magnum? That was back at the Mopedheads first rally, and Tommy was gps’d, but Matt was not. His motor has survived every rally since (except Seattle and SF where he rode Gerbi) and it has been right up there at 70 the whole time. The MB-5 wheels and forks make the bike a beast, but whatever, it goes. I wish I had some original photos of it with the simo and hero-gizmo tank and uncovered seat. Not nearly as nice, but still fast.

Like any builder progression is natural. We all got excited about Derbi motors a few years ago, and after I got my original variant, he put a wanted ad on MA and got a real nice flat reed motor for $100. He built it up and was out on the track at the 2nd polini cup. It was fast but it seized due to a pinched fuel line. He wanted something cooler so he grafted the motor and swingarm onto a Garelli SSXL frame with the help of one of our buddies, another dude into building cars. You’ve seen this bike and its been equally as rad. Its loud and its fast. Its also reliable, that is except for cracked seat mounts and just recently a blown seal.

Now his new projects continue the ingenuity. Another Gerbi, this time a piston-ported giladerbi has been made to fit another SSXL frame. Who would have know the mounts all align perfectly, just the cases need some trimming?

With the help of Tom and others, he is building a 50cc moby. He was going to go the whole GR1 route, but some creativity means a stock crank and cases pumping out 15+ hp. Its obviously early, but it has potential.

We all got into the mini-moped dirt-bikes a year ago, and he followed suit by picking up this rad pink magnumX frame. I don’t know what he wants to put on it, but I recall hearing about cheap monoshock swingarms and rad pitbike forks.

Also seen on the boards is his AR50. Much like the AR80, but with less displacement, this guy is rad. It has slicks, race-ready rear suspension and a cool custom seat. He showed me an English site that has big kits, CDIs and pipes, and how the power will far exceed that of an AR80. This is a blast to ride now, and it’ll be crazy with some more power.

Lastly is this death-trap he is constructing. I want to say its a honda frame and some big single cyliner 2 stroke. Apparently the motor will put out something like 30 horsepower and should weigh in less than 150 lbs. He has a cool fiberglass tank and other bits. I don’t support this, but its cool nonetheless.

Yep, Matt has a lot of bikes. All are rad and constantly pushing moped tech to new levels.


coming soon (long time)
November 1, 2009, 6:10 pm
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So I picked up a NOS garelli ssxl frame from a fellow out in Ohio (thanks for the tip brandon!). It’ll be here soon, then its going to chillax for some time. It may be nos, but that won’t stop me. Expect to see a gerbi later on. Probably won’t really begin to happen until summer, but I’d getting all the bits lined up. Its going to be radical regardless.

2 coolest builds you haven’t seen
October 24, 2009, 7:57 pm
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Well maybe you have, but whatever, these are probably the coolest 2 bikes, both built by Matt. He worked as a mechanic for Skip Barber racing school for a few years, then came back to cupertino to hang out with us losers.

His first build is this magnum. MB5 forks and wheels, Unported Gila’d e50 with HPI, custom simonini pipe, 17×36 gearing. He was clocked at about 68 in sac, but went even faster in LA. He was pulled over on our ride last night blasting a line of cars, but turns out one was a cop! She looked at the bike and gave him a warning. The bike is a tank, and has survived countless rallies, and has gone strong for almost 2 years now.

His other bike is the Gerbi. Garelli SSXL frame paired with a derbi flat reed motor. 75cc metrakit, zen pipe, lomat 4-petal, 24 mikuni, HPI, and some stiff polini clutch springs. This thing is finally done (conveniently after race season), but its rad. Its got a 17″ puch 5 star with the 16″ puch 5 star hub (derbi owners take note, a good rear wheel solution).

And here is the (grumpy) man, fixing yet another derbi.