Tuesday, June 10, 2008
A fellow in Argentina went into the basement and found a colony of Ants which had lain undisturbed for many years... but, since these were Rumi Formichini (Italian for Ants), it attracted my interest!
Rumi was well-known in the 1950's and 60's for their beautifully constructed two-stroke twins of 125-200cc, which had distinctive laid-down cylinders. Their sporting motorcycles are the most famous, but they also made this unusual scooter, which uses cast aluminum body parts instead of pressed steel, forming a monocoque chassis with the engine as a stressed member. The engine is 125cc two-stroke twin cylinder, with twin 18mm carbs (22mm on the Sports Model - yes!), and chromed cylinder bores; it was the fastest scooter available at the time. The Formichino won its class in the Bol d'Or 24 hour race at Montlhery, 3 times - 1957/8/60. Of course, you could then buy the 'Bol d'Or' version of the scooter - painted gold, with a whopping 9hp. The Rumi factory ceased motorcycle production in 1962. There is a nice website devoted to the scooter here.