Lario heart transplant

I called in to see Ray last Friday to drop off my Stornello forks to get some new bushes made and seem to have agreed to buy a Lario off him, and I haven’t even seen the bike!!.I recall it has valve problems on one side so can only assume it has suffered the usual fate of so many of these models and has dropped a valve head into the top of the piston.I am assuming spare heads for these are going to be rarer than hens teeth and so the alternative option would be to swap the engine for a two valve motor such as a V50, 650 or 750. There are a couple of motors on ebay, neither are particularly cheap, a 500 motor only for £200 or a 750 with gearbox etc for £350.My question is what will fit with what? I seem to recall reading about differences in the outputs somewhere along the drive train. Does the engine to clutch spline vary?Does the gearbox to shaft splines vary?Do the gearbox ratios vary?It would seem the Lario has 16" wheels so presumably the gear ratio is increased somewhere to account.Basically, what are my optionsOr has anyone got a left hand Lario head in good condition?

if its anything like the v35/50 the drop gear in the bell housing is changed to lower the overall ratiomy 16" t5’s gearing was very low compared to a later t5 with 18" wheels so on the big block 16" the gearing did not appear to be altered

As I recall the v50 II has a different output spline to the v50 III and later models.

I am sure it will be pretty similar to the V50 etc

Hi Brian Thanks for that. Are you talking of the engine to clutch connection or gearbox to shaft drive?

I think I need a read up of Guzziology and have a chat with Rod, the small block guru in Oz.

I do know what Pete had his V50 the drive shaft had 2-3 different options and it drove him nuts trying to get a replacement.

The Lario may not be that trashed there were replacement ss valves made by Raceco The oe valves used to stretch… oncs sorted they are a sweet ride

If you needed to swap the engine the best bet would be a donor 750, (Nevada) but as I found out with the V50 mk 2 Nick had it really is not worth the whole hassle and cost

Ascertain what is the exact problem first, it might be fixable.


I was referring to the gearbox output.

Hi Don
I’ll look out the links/notes from posts I made a while back after buying Deb’s Lario.
All the best

Plenty of advice on the Lario and other small blocks here
It is an article written by Rod (Morrizzi) from Australia that I had the pleasure of meeting a cople of years ago when he did a European tour. I had probably better take a read of it myself.

I was referring to the valve problem.

Might be fixable. (Info is vague.)

I am vague about it, I haven’t even seen the bike myself yet, just some photo’s on Ray’s facebook page. The bike was going to be broken for spares so it seemed worthwhile saving it from that fate.

Fairy nuff, at risk of sounding like a scratched record, when you do finally get mitts on to it, examine valve gear first. Might be something dead simple.

Mike I like your optimism. From what I have read, we are talking about a time bomb with the Lario engine, not if it goes bang, more like when it goes bang.The previous owner reported problems with the valve gear so I am fearing the worst. That way I won’t be disappointed.

To be fair Don the 16" wheels will far more entertaining than a valve dropping

It’s an interesting thought
There’s a lot of preventative stuff to be done (imposing a redline 1500 -2000 rpm lower than on the tacho!)
They are prone to problems and yet there are a few out there giving good service.
Thanks for the link, it’s a great resource which I’ve used when trying to explain that small blocks are much more than smaller big blocks
All the best
Steveguzzibrat2014-03-15 09:29:55

While I owned my Lario it was ridden pretty hard (they rev very easily), often 2-up with luggage (I fitted hard panniers on jome-made brackets), for about 20,000 miles. I routinely checked the valve clearances at 3,000 mile intervals as a precaution, but there was never cause for concern. I believe there was a recall to replace the original valves/springs that were the issue? Or else many were repaired in their early years and subsequently gave no problems.

In any case, a good engineering firm like SEP at Kegworth should be able to weld & reclaim a damaged cylinder head if necessary. Much cheaper and easier than a transplant!

MartinThat is very interesting. They are just up the road from me.Once I get the Stornello finished, I will take a look at it and see just what needs doing. I would like to salvage the original engine if possible.

Do you want to pop over one evening and have a quick look and see how it is

Look at the AIGOR site lario valve springs Suzuki GN250

This is not looking good. Took the left head off today and it is a two valve motor now on that side. There is one valve head embedded into one of the valve seats and one head missing (The head had previously been off so I assume it was floating around loose.To rebuild it will need 8 valves and springs and seats, 2nd hand head, piston and probably a barrel, New cam, as that is almost certainly shot (not taken that out yet). New clutch as the shock absorber springs are shot.Pictures to follow.Is anyone familiar with the later 750 injection motors. I have a possible chance to buy one and slot that in but would need to change it to carbs and points as the motor won’t have the black boxes and all the rest of the gubbins to run the fuel injection. I am wondering how feasible this might be?