1956 175cc Moto Guzzi Zigolo

This bike has an interesting history but I don't know all of it. My friend Mike participated in an Italian Giro event on his 175 Americano. He was riding with my friend and noted racer Frank Scurria. Frank crashed hard into a pickup truck and Mike was the first on the scene. Frank spent the next 6 months in the hospital. Because of the seriousness of his injuries, a benefit fund was set up for for him. Along with this effort, a generous person put this bike up for auction on ebay. The money would go to Frank. Mike was the highest bidder.

Mike brought the bike to me because it had shifting problems. It turned out the shift return spring was broken. My work was cut out for me.

The body shell on this bike is one piece and I had to remove it. The way it comes off is to lift it directly upward. Access to the transmission required body removal. There was much to take apart before lifting it.

I decided to remove the engine for the frame was still preventing me from getting to the transmission. Finally I was able to get to the problem. The next problem was replacing the broken spring. I managed to modify a brake pedal return spring from a 450 Ducati RT to work.

The bike is fun to ride but because of the large flywheel, it takes time to get up to speed. The 4 speed transmission is as clunky as any classic Guzzi twin I have ridden. The friction suspension on the rear is controlled by how tight you turn the dial. The rebound is supplied by a big rubber plug under the sub frame where the swing arm bashes against it. At least it has "modern" upside down forks!

A baby bacon slicer!

A rotary valve two stroke single with exposed kick start assembly

Magneto ignition above and straight cut primary to the left.

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