Butcher Garage isn’t the first customisation shop to promote the Vespa way of life or to service the classics around these parts of the world. However, they are among the first to dare to take the hammer to a perfectly sound modern model. Where else but in St. Petersburg, the city originally built by Italian architects to represent the very essence of European spirit, could there be a garage that takes pride in preserving and perfecting an Italian legend – Vespa!
Butcher Garage were happy to take the challenge when a friend from the Moscow Vespa club asked them to construct a “Honda Zoomer/Ruckus style custom” based on a Vespa LX. And so began another adventure in twisting metal and engineering solutions!
Usually Butcher Garage is lucky with customers, where they are given carte blanche to design and build to the a rough idea of a customer’s dreams. In the case with this project, the owner quite accurately described what they want to receive at the end of the project. The customer specified that the scooter be stretched to make the axle of the back wheel level with the end of the body, as a result the wheel base has grown up on 240 mm.
To construct the stretch for the project on the basis of a Vespa LX is not a simple task. For starters, a new subframe for the motor needed to be fabricated. To use the stock shock absorber after the stretch would have been impossible, so several options were considered. After some head scratching, the final solution was to use the suspension from a Ducati Monster 400. The body was modified under the seat space in two places for the shock absorber mount, adjustments made to the fuel tank and the under seat compartment was accordingly reduced in size. It will not hold a helmet now, but it still contains a tool kit, gloves and a cover.
The back wheel has been fabricated from three stock Vespa wheels to gain the necessary seven inch width for the new 130/70 rubber to make it look “Japanese”. The new configuration demanded modification of the tail to clear the tyre. Also, a new recessed stoplight was inserted under a repurposed aluminium lattice from a horn cover. A modified exhaust manifold, muffler and air cleaner box complete the modifications at the rear.
At the front of the scooter new clubman style handlebars have been fabricated, changing it from the standard enclosed LX style to a more retro/vintage look. A Bitubo front shock absorber was added and the headlight was moved from the head set to the front fender. Inspiration came from the original Piaggio “Paperino” (shown below) with the light held in a new fibreglass mount integrated into the fender.
About 20 elements including the body have been painted a black opaque. Twenty more elements, such as wheels, handlebar, and subframe are powder coated. The saddle has been fabricated from two different kinds of leather by the upholsterer traditionally used for Butcher Garage projects – Aleksandr Torgashev. Butcher Garage would like to thank the guys from Metal ///DIY for their help with the project.
Unfortunately (or fortunately – depends on your point of view) Butcher build their projects in single copies (in a case with Kaonashi to order). Therefore the stretch will not be available as components or kit to stretch other Vespa LXs scooters, but if you have a look at their webpage they do have other cool merchandise available for sale.
Here’s the finished product. It might not be to everyone’s taste, but it sure was to the now very happy Vespa fan who commissioned it and to the skilled hands of the build team at Butcher Garage!
No-Face (カオナシ kaonashi, lit. “faceless”) is a spirit in the Japanese animated film Spirited Away. He is shown to be capable of reacting to emotions and ingesting other individuals in order to gain their personality and physical traits.
Butcher Garage Contact Details
11 Tsiolkovskogo st., 4 floor
Phone : +7 905 224 76 38