There's a niche in the scooter world that people like us can fit into pretty well. Somewhere in the neighborhood of five years ago I started noticing that one can buy scooters directly from online retailers. They were intriguing because they tended to be nice looking machines at a very low price. About $600, at that time, for a 50cc and nearing $1000 for a 150. They'd ship it directly to your door. I might have placed an order then and there except that I, naturally, wondered about quality. So I started looking into reviews by people who had bought these things and was scared away immediately. There were very, very few people who said, "My scooter showed up right away and it's been great!" There were far, far more who had pretty big complaints. Quite a few said that the scooter they got was not the one they ordered. I suppose that wouldn't be the worst thing in the world as long as the scooter actually worked. But so many of these complaints were of a scooter that wouldn't run or had some major component not working on delivery. Plus they all agreed that the seller was of no help at all in getting these matters fixed. My interpretation of all of this was that these retailers were buying shipping containers of low quality scooters from you-know-where. When stock ran low they'd order more. Not necessarily from the same supplier. The new batch would be completely different. Different components, etc. Quality control would be terrible in all cases. And you'd have zero chance of getting parts. I wanted nothing to do with pieces of cheese like this. So I decided that when I did buy a scooter I'd better pay the price for a name-brand with a dealer network. And last winter I bought my wife a Honda. I hadn't actually planned on buying myself a scooter until this winter. But then a deal came by that was too good to pass up. So now I've got one too. A brand with respect in the scooter community and a local dealer. That's fine. But in researching these things I have found that my interpretation of the really cheap scooters was wrong in a couple of important respects. The componentry appears to be quite standard from cheap-o factory to cheap-o factory. Something like our happy time engines. Plus parts and components actually are available. Not from the retailers, but from vendors who are not so different from the vendors who we turn to for motorized bicycle parts and components. This makes better sense, actually, than the notion that major components are constantly being re-engineered in these cheap bikes. Or that individual no-name facilities have proprietary parts and components. I should have thought of that. This changes things a bit. The cheap scooters are workable for guys like us. They're something like happy time engines and components; not great by any means. But someone who knows what he's doing can make them work pretty well. I'll still fault these retailers on one matter. They are leading potential customers down the garden path by talking about their great warranties and fully stocked parts warehouses. Horsefeathers! But I can understand their point of view as well. At such a price point the sale must be final. They'll lose their shirts if they have to deal with returns and such. I'd respect them more if they said openly, "If you buy one of these, you're going to need to be resourceful. This low price point won't support us holding your hand." But maybe that would make sales tank. Such an argument doesn't excuse their dishonesty. But as long as I understand the situation, then I can choose whether or not to deal with them. I can't afford to take up too much time pondering their morality. I came across a really good youtube tutorial. This guy received one of these cheap scooters and filmed his post delivery inspection/improvements. These bikes come to the buyer in a semi-open shipping crate, partially dis-assembled. The assembly that the buyer must do is not all that much. But this guy recommends stripping it down much further and fixing the mistakes caused by poor quality control at the factory. And on this particular bike there was plenty that needed to be done. But at the end he had on hand what appeared to be a pretty nice little scoot for the money. Here's a link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VkNHOAOyK8 It's very interesting. I'm reminded an awful lot of motorized bicycles. Personally, I plan on having both as long as I'm able to ride. My MB will be my 12 mph ride with a limit of, say, 10 miles. My scooter will be my 25-30 mph machine with a somwhat higher distance limit. And in the not too distant future I just might start getting into monkey-wrenching on these cheap scooters. It actually does look like fun.