Red Dog and Me

This is an on-going dialog between me and a certain motor scooter, namely a 2009 Piaggio MP3 500 that came to live with me in October of 2009. I've named the scooter Red Dog and as yet have not determined its gender. In the past when I've named boats, bikes, and other like characters I've thought of them as feminine due to their behavior characteristics. Red Dog I'm not so sure about...we'll see. Update: OK, Red Dog's a girl...with an attitude

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

April 4, 2011 The Elusive Cruise Control farkle…

When it comes to cruise controls for motorcycles there seems to be no limit to design and function. For years there have been several “flip-over” models, all of which do little more than lock the throttle in whatever position it’s in when you set it. They’re inexpensive and for the most part seem to work pretty well; I’ve got one on my sidecar outfit and it’s been a blessing on long rides.
Releasing or cancelling the flip-over’s grip on the throttle is achieved by thumbing the control lever to the off position. For the most part these work OK but when it comes to hilly terrain they’re not much good. Imagine if you will the excitement of cresting a hill with the control set full on and suddenly you’re accelerating downhill with the throttle maxed…. Canceling the cruise setting can be a bit unsettling if not downright scary during those times.
Other types have come along that do a better job by incorporating easier shut off actions. Sadly all of those manufacturers warn against using their products on bikes equipped with heated grips. No one seems to know exactly why that is but I suspect it has something to do with liability, maybe those devices wear through the heated grips or something.  Of course that’s one of the most desireable options so naturally Red Dog is outfitted with Hot Grips.

Go Cruise Throttle Control

Recently  one of the MP3 forum members posted a link to, suppliers for a product called Go Cruise Throttle Control. Like many designs it’s simple as can be, works sort of like a clothes pin gripping the bikes throttle control. 

Mounted on Red Dog
The thing that sets it apart from the flip over type is part of the unit sticks out over the front brake lever so when you pull the brake it slides the throttle control back to a reduced speed.

Hey it even works when you're not on the bike!

This concept sounded like a good idea and I figured for the relatively low price of $27.94 delivered I had to have one. It turned out to be a slick device that seems to work pretty well. About the only drawback I’ve encountered on Red Dog is it’s possible to set the throttle and then start the engine. On an MP3 that's not a good practice as the front end unlocks at certain speeds…

Those who are familiar with that model will appreciate what might happen to anyone not paying close attention. I didn't drop Red Dog but I was fairly busy for a few seconds. Woo Hoo!


  1. Wow, no posts for a long time....hopefully the Red Dog hasn't been "put to sleep". (?)

  2. Hey Doug,
    Nah, not to sleep but she's sure been neglected for awhile. There's a remote possibility I may take a run back to TN in late spring but only if my plans to ride the Ninja to Mexico get put on hold. Film at eleven as they say...
    Good to hear from you,

  3. Have you heard of a pulse scooter? They are the best, super fast and handle great.

  4. No, haven't heard of that model but I've sure heard a lot about spammers who use other people's blogs for their own crooked purposes. If I'm wrong there's probably a legitimate reason for your lack of a personal profile. Take a hike.