SW Virginia safe for MB'S

Discussion in 'Laws, Legislation & Emissions' started by geebt48cc, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member

    Hey room,

    I've been riding around the very back roads here in SWVa. So, I'm riding a 26", 48cc Skyhawk with front and rear lights. My helmet has mirror attached ........................

    So, question is, should I be prepared to be bothered by the Blue-Boys?


  2. Al.Fisherman

    Al.Fisherman Active Member

    Weather legal (as here in AL) or not, be prepared. Read up on your laws and then when you (notice "when" and not "if") are stopped YOU know the rules. I'd bet less then 10% of LEO's might know them. Here in Calera none that we talked to did and after we hit the road with the bikes have we educated them.


    How I read it they are legal...others may say no.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  3. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    ""Motor-driven cycle" means every motorcycle that has a gasoline engine that (i) displaces less than 150 cubic centimeters; (ii) has a seat less than 24 inches in height, measured from the middle of the seat perpendicular to the ground; and (iii) has no manufacturer-issued vehicle identification number."

    that sounds like an unusually generous and forgiving definition of a motorized bicycle. The article at the link doesn't seem to specify the licensing, insurance, and registration required above and beyond this: "Moped operators must be at least 16 years old and must carry some form of identification that includes name, address, and date of birth." Based on that, it looks like one just needs to have an ID to operate a moped. If so, I would say that's the same for a MB.

    I haven't done this yet myself, but it's not a bad idea to carry a hard copy of whatever statues and provisions apply to you and your bike.

    I've not yet been approached by police even though at one stoplight I was stopped near three bicycle cops and I've passed at least a dozen in patrol cars. The laws in Wisconsin state that one has to possess at least a driver's license, but it does not have to be a moped/motorcycle license and the bike itself does not have to be registered or insured-- as long as it's not capable of more than 30 mph. I've got head- and tail- lights that exceed bicycle requirements/recommendations and will soon have motorcycle grade brake light and turn signals.
  4. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member

    Thanks Red...

    So, can I ask you where you found a brake and turn signal assy. I too, would like to have something like that as long as it wasn't to big.


    Glen:idea: PS: You guys really hit the Viking last night!~ Poor Bret!~
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  5. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    I laughed out LOUD when Brett fell all on his lonesome in that last play! It was an exciting game the whole way, too.

    anyway... everything is off eBay:

    Master switch with turn signals I am going to attach the running lights to the HI-LO beams where HI = on and LO = off

    Turn signals I am going to mount these together by sticking them into the ends of a piece of copper or PVC piping that is just long enough.

    Brake lights this is brake light and running light in one.

    Head Light I don't have this YET, but I will be getting it to replace the halogen light I got. a completely LED system will draw less power than halogens.
    Brake/Clutch lever with brake light switch Granted, this will activate the brake light when I pull the clutch, but that's OK since pulling the clutch probably means I am slowing down... It also has a "parking brake" latch as the stock clutch levers do. Not mandatory, but too convenient to skip.

    SLA Battery system is powered with this battery, which is rechargeable (though I recharge it in the house, not through the magneto)

    I don't have everything hooked up-- heck, I don't even HAVE everything. I've got the halogen headlight and the brake light hooked up to the battery in a way where disconnecting the battery is the only way to shut everything off.
  6. sangesf

    sangesf New Member

    The pertinent section is this......

    Moped" means every vehicle that travels on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground that has (i) a seat that is no less than 24 inches in height, measured from the middle of the seat perpendicular to the ground and (ii) gasoline, electric, or hybrid motor that displaces less than 50 cubic centimeters. Moped operators must be at least 16 years old and must carry some form of identification that includes name, address, and date of birth. A moped is considered a vehicle while operated on a highway. Mopeds can not be ridden on sidewalks or bike paths. Some localities in Northern Virginia may impose restrictions on the operation of mopeds. Localities can require additional safety equipment for moped operation.

    Very nice... Moped = Bicycle

    Just remember a town may enact it's own laws..

    Look up every town you are planning to travel through and check their laws..

    Place to go is...

    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  7. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    My understanding of Virginia laws is that motorized bikes are OK. I have ridden extensively in Northern Virginia and around Lexington VA with no trouble at all.
  8. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member

    Hey there,

    So, I wanted to know what kind of riding do you do in Va.? I mean, always road, speeds, other cars, lights, do you just wave people by when they are on your back? See, I'm just trying to get off the very back roads...............just a little scared that the police will just use that as a reason to kill some of there shift time and curiosty of the bike. Then you would have to go into a long spill all about the bike?

    Anyway, that was my reason for going with just a 48cc for legal time on road.

    Appreciate your time
  9. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    From what I read, our bikes are generally considered mopeds in VA (those with 50cc or smaller engines, that is,) and can be ridden at speeds up to 35 mph, but cannot be ridden in bike lanes. Unfortunately, motor driven cycles (motorcycles with engines between 50cc and 150cc,) are not allowed on the roads in VA.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  10. arkives1

    arkives1 Member

    I grew up in Tazewell, Va. and I remember very clearly the steep hills and sharp curves. I used to wish I had a motor on my bike in the days of 50's era schwinns. How the heck we rode those things all over the mountains including the goat paths called dirt roads is beyond me. We must have been in incredibly good condition as kids. I don't recall ever having a close encounter with cars on those roads and never had an accident that wasn't my fault....usually too fast down hill on a curve that I under estimated. I went over a steep hill side once and ended up in a tree several feet off the ground. Barbed wire fences were memorized as places to slow down on curves. I still have family there but none of them ride anymore.
  11. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    I have biked over 3200 miles since I got my MB in March on all types or roads in VA, MD, and DC. I have had no problems with police or cars so far. I just hope my luck holds.

    In Northern VA, I ride in built up areas. The inner suburbs (inside the beltway) are most bike-friendly. There are lots of connecting streets through residential areas with light slow-moving traffic and wide streets. At full throttle, I can ride at about 32 mph, which is faster than most cars go. Usually the cars slow me down rather than vice-versa. My typical average speed for a trip is about 22 mph even though I exceed 30 mph on clear straight sections of road. Usually cars don't pass me, but they generally have lots of room if they want to pass. I feel completely comfortable riding in these areas.

    I have gone through several police radar speed traps exceeding the speed limit by as much as 10 mph and never been waved over (although I have gotten dirty looks.) I have rolled through stop signs where the police had set up a trap and not been pulled over. And I have passed many other traps while riding completely legally. The police have looked at me but never bothered me.

    I have ridden on bike trails with signs prohibiting motorized vehicles. Sometimes these trails are the only good way to get from one area to another. On these trails I usually turn off the motor and pedal. But if there is a long straight section and no one in sight, I will cheat and turn on the motor.

    The outer suburbs are less bike friendly. They developed as housing developments with no through streets where all the traffic has to go on big multi-lane, high speed, heavy traffic roads. I have ridden on those. Cars can pass by moving to another lane or by squeezing by. I don't like them, but they are usually the only alternative.

    I have ridden west of the metropolitan area almost to the Blue Ridge mountains. Roads are very narrow and winding. Passing zones are almost non-existent. It is almost impossible for a car to safely pass and they almost never try. All in all I have found the drivers to be courteous and patient. When a car is behind me on those roads, I look for a spot to pull over so they can pass. I like to be as courteous as possible.

    I have also ridden near Lexington VA. There the back roads have almost no cars.

    I have ridden in Garrett County in western Maryland. That is desolate. I can ride for hours and encounter only a few cars. There is also little cell phone coverage and houses are miles apart. I hate the thought of a breakdown there.

    Glen, where are you located in VA?
  12. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member

    Larry, nice to talk to you.

    I'm here in Abingdon,Va. and there can be some very tricky places here and there to ride. See, that's the reason why I just need to get on out and just go with the traffic in this area. I do somewhat, but I've always have been unsure of how that would go over? I'm riding a 300 mile 48cc Skyhawk that has really been taken care of.....both preformance and overall hardware. So, my point being that I wouldn't have any problem riding out on a good day trip. The longest I've gone is about 15 miles (Very early last Sunday) round trip, but see, I road the very back roads to stay away from the boys in blue. ...........Average speed 18.4 top was 30.7.............

    I road the German K bikes and boxers.......but wanted more hands on with this little China Wonders!~ Scary, but true.....Uno, love only using a couple of gallons every 4-5 months.

    You can take a look of bike on first page of picture gallery. (Geebt48cc)

  13. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    I believe the section you are referring to has been repealed:

    Sec. 46.2-911.

    Repealed by Acts 1994, c. 51.

    My understanding of the VA laws is that a motorized bike is considered a "moped" and is legal on the roads:

    46.2-100. Definitions

    "Moped" means every vehicle that travels on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground that has (i) a seat that is no less than 24 inches in height, measured from the middle of the seat perpendicular to the ground and (ii) a gasoline, electric, or hybrid motor that displaces less than 50 cubic centimeters. For purposes of Chapter 8 (� 46.2-800 et seq.) of this title, a moped shall be a vehicle while operated on a highway.

    I believe that if the engine displacement exceeds 50cc, a motorized bike is covered by the regulations for motorcycles.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2015
  14. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member

    Thanks Larry,

    See, that was my reasoning for doing the 48cc.......Hey, thanks for sending.

    LoL, I'm a little to big for the 48cc, but uno it's a bike. It's not going to kill me to peddle up a few pretty good sized hills. But see, I still averaged around 19MPH on up and down country road last Sunday. Cruise mid 20's.

    Glen PS-Can you send me a picture of your bike?
  15. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    Glen, I've got a lot of family in your area, (but I haven't been there in nearly 10 years. ) It's beautiful country, but I'm sure the hills aren't any shorter than I remember! A motor would be just about essential for a bike in your neck o' the woods.
  16. geebt48cc

    geebt48cc Member


    That's the understatement of the year!!!!!!!!~ True, the topography here can be quite a challenge at times. See, given that, I still can average a good clip up and down country roads around 20mph for average, and 30+ on sraight. You would still consider it a good cruising speed.

    What a power house this 48cc is..........................:)

    PS: Hard to even keep up with the handlebars at times!~