Classic: Moto Morini 3 1-2 Sport



Moto Morini 3 1/2 sport

He was beautiful anyway. And technically, Morini’s little twin lined up seamlessly between those from Ducati and Moto Guzzi. Typically Italian – as a proud V..

W.hen Philippe de Paoli wears a jet helmet, a very special day begins. Nobody who could force him to run errands in his Audi, nobody on whom the threat of bad weather would suggest that he pick up the good BMW R 80 R.. No, with a jet helmet he welcomes a bright blue sky over the industrial town of Dudelange in Luxembourg, and the anticipation with which Philippe opens his garage signals that he will escape this Dudelange as easily as possible today: on small paths, with a slim motorcycle . Today is a Morini day.

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Classic: Moto Morini 3 1-2 Sport

Moto Morini 3 1/2 sport

Moto Morini 3 1/2 Sport is on their Borrani high-shoulder rims. Not even 150 kilograms of full tank come together, and in the Italian, i.e. the bel canto version, they can be spurred on by a fairly sprightly 39 SAE PS.

Although the silencer inserts that were extended for Germany released only 28 DIN horses, they staged an almost unbelievable fireworks display in 1975 and duped the entire competition. After all, the Japanese threw all sorts of designs around in the 250 to 350 cubic centimeter class, from the diaphragm-controlled two-stroke twin to the whispering four-stroke four-cylinder. And then there was a bumper V-Two and hissed around the ring faster than a Yamaha RD 350, went over 170 km / h with a long-lying rider and did not shy away from more than 9000 tours. Whether the 28 HP of the MOTORRAD test machine were real?

So be it. The story of this little miracle began at the Milan Salon in 1971, this first modern mid-range machine from Italy in many years. Admittedly, the overall appearance of the tour version presented there remained in the down-to-earth attitude of the house. Regardless of all the successes that Tarquinio Provini had achieved on a 250 double-cam single up to the mid-sixties, regardless of the fact that a certain Giacomo Agostini had started his racing career on a 175 Morini, trusted Alfonso after the war Morini founded companies in the series always on simple constructions. Single-cylinder bumper with 125 to 175 cubic centimeters, for the way to work, reliable, frugal – and extremely successful commercially. But in order to participate in the motorcycle boom of the seventies, a multi-cylinder had to be produced, in a configuration that was as conspicuous as possible.

The traditional and civilized two-cylinder V-engine seemed just right to the Bolognese engineers – with a transverse crankshaft, because the chain was recommended as rear-wheel drive in this class, and with a strikingly large cylinder angle of 72 degrees. Construction costs and height could be reduced if one did without overhead camshafts, arranged parallel valves, short bumpers and a camshaft arranged high in the cylinder V, but still guaranteed speed stability. For the first time in motorcycle construction, the camshaft was moved by a toothed belt; its end opposite the drive side carried one of the first contactless ignitions. Other innovative solutions were a six-speed gearbox and a ten-plate dry clutch. Finally, another special feature: the Heron combustion chambers, which are not housed in the cylinder head, as usual, but in the piston crown and are therefore extremely compact. Together with the inlet ports, which already give the mixture a certain swirl, they should ensure favorable turbulence and good combustion. In fact, the little V, which was later joined by variants with 250 and 500 cubic centimeters, was just as powerful as it was economical: always on the Sport, which dictated a sporty stance with its flanged stubs, it took more than six liters to achieve more than six liters to consume.

When Philippe de Paoli tours from Dudelange towards the Moselle, he usually gets by on five liters. Then he doesn’t feel like trying hard, then the former machinist is completely retired. In view of the wine-blissful river, thoughts will occasionally wander to his Italian homeland, and then the Morini has to thump a little more dully to alleviate the longing. “Downhill, with the gas closed, it just sounds wonderful,” enthuses the owner, proudly referring to the typical ingredients: from Borrani to Dellorto and Lafranconi to Marzocchi for the fork, Ceriani for the mutes and Veglia for the instruments. He discovered them at an Italian gas station attendant in Dudelange. He had taken it over from his father, and it took three visits to convince the good man that only an enthusiast like Philippe could properly appreciate the heirloom. Not a lie.

The 3 1/2 was stuck for five years, but after some cleaning it was as new as it was in spring 1975. This makes Philippe’s sport one of the first ever, because according to common Italian practice, some rumors passed between rumors (from 1973) and series production Time. The friends of light athletes, especially the Italo faction, now abandoned by Aermacchi, Motobi and Gilera, had stewed long enough. It was all the easier to note that with only a few changes compared to the slightly bizarre touring model that had been delivered since 1973, an attractive eye-catcher had emerged: clip-on handlebars, one-man humps, black-red paint, high-shoulder rims, a double simlex instead of a duplex brake at the front and a sharper one Camshaft. Done – as if from one piece.

Nothing too much – apart from the steering damper maybe. Nothing too little. When you sit up, you first notice how delicate this motorcycle really is. Anyone who drives off soon discovers the impressive solidity. Tight bends, fast bends, undulating bends: the 20-year-old Marzocchi and Ceriani parts put everything away with ease. The pretty drum brakes take some getting used to, especially because they can only tolerate high braking forces in a finely dosed manner. The transmission is a bit stuck, the idle is sometimes hidden.

So what? The Morini always inspires with its stability and ultra-easy handling. Something comparable is missing today, this form of active driving fun has probably been conveyed recently by the singles from Honda and Yamaha. They had a little more weight – and a little more power. The fact that the Morini testers still attested it in 1975, no one wants to attest to it today. Sure, it is not weak, but usable performance is only achieved at 3500 rpm, 1000 revs later the flat slide carburetors can also be brutally ripped open. But if you want to keep up with a modern half-liter, you shouldn’t let the speed drop below 5000 rpm. There is no point of no return. It doesn’t tear from the seat. But it’s always astonishing how this old twin turns up and up unmoved.

He never denies his culture, he always proves his excellent condition, and only downhill, with closed sliders, he sometimes slaps angrily. In view of all these endearing qualities, the following ranking has emerged in Philippe de Paoli’s stable: “You definitely drive better in a BMW. But you prefer to drive on the Morini. “

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