How to get the Lambretta gear changing work perfect and smooth?
We take a close look at the controls and what can be done down from the headset thru the cables to the gear swivel and gear selector arm on the engine casings.
Let’s face it the last Lambrettas have left the Innocenti factory half a century ago. And not everyone has been maintained and serviced regular and as it should be done. One of the many beauties on the Lambrettas is that they are very simple to work on, especially with the right tools, right parts and the right hints (Sticky). There are three areas to look at:
- Handlebar / headset
- Engine casing
Lambretta handlebar / headset
Thru the Li family there had been different changes on the internals of the headset. On well- maintained bikes most of the time taking everything apart, cleaning and put it properly greased and lubricated can do the job. When you are up the job, it won’t do no harm to renew all the bushings in the headset. These are the guides for the gear and throttle rods. Available as handy sets from Casa Lambretta:
- Li Tv Series 1 and 2: https://www.scooter-center.com/product/8800050
- Series 3 up to 1965: https://www.scooter-center.com/product/8800051
- Series 3 from 1965*: https://www.scooter-center.com/product/8800052
*also dl / GP range
If you need additional spares a nice way to find them are our exploded views, that are online for all Lambretta scooters. Here you see the dl / GP headset:
Once everything is properly rebuild and any slack is taken out –especially of the gear change housing and the gearchange rod- you are done with the headset and can have a look at the cables.
Lambretta cables and routing
Essential are Teflon / PTFE lined cables. These run super smooth and are maintenance free. The bgm cable sets are especially made for the Li family Lambretta and have some unique features. The right inner and outer cable lengths are granted. Here you find additional info about how good these are: https://blog.scooter-center.com/en/cable-sets-bgm-pro-for-vespa-and-lambretta/. Back to the plot: Once you have routed the outer cables in the right way as can be seen on the bgm’s fitting instructions:
- Cable set bgm PTFE inner liner- Lambretta DL, GP | BGM6401N
- Cable set bgm PTFE inner liner- Lambretta LI, LIS, SX, TV (Series 2-3) | BGM6400N
It’s time to fit the inner cables. On the brake and clutch levers use a good blob of grease to keep everything well lubricated. Especially the lever screw, the trunnion of the inner cable and all operating and moving parts.
A run-down of the inner cables with Teflon spray does no harm and especially the operating of the clutch is much more easy:
Topp Tipp: If the bolts of the clutch and brake lever are not properly greased they can wear off the holes in the light switch housing and gear change housing. These can easily been repaired with the oversize bolt:
Lambretta engine casing
The most important thing is to avoid any unwanted slop in the gear swivel, tie rodgear change and the the selector arm. Luckily there are many different choices for everyone’s tasting available.
Like the made to original specs Casa Lambretta gear selector set:
Or the high grade CNC machined set from bgm Made by JPP Tuning for us:
Paired with the bgm trunnions you really have a perfect and long lasting set:
This is the full bgm trunnion set:
Lambretta Tool & Tool bags
For sure the bgm trunnions have the original 3.5 mm allen key size as found on original machines as well as on original toolbags supplied with your brand new scooter:
Something we went not original is the allen key for adjusting these. The bgm one comes with a ball end. This makes adjusting the gear change trunnions a cakewalk as you come across the clutch cable easily:
Topp Tipp: For all the rusteration freaks out there that want to keep their Lambrettas as original as possible we have over size trunnions made for preserving worn out gear swivels:
The oversize makes the trunnions fit perfectly in used gear swivels. If necessary, grind out new shifting paddles minimally.
These compliment perfectly the inner cable sets: