Malaguti Spidermax - how long do parts last

When is the best time to replace used up parts

2012-12-19 Rear Tire

2012-10-24 Brake pads
2012-08-30 Spark plug
2012-08-23 exhaust seal
2012-04-20 Valves

2012-04-12 Front Tire
2012-03-14 Rear Tire
2012-02-09 Rollers
2012-02-02 Belt
2012-01-26 Rollers
Exhaust seal
After 50000 km the Spidermax exhaust was getting louder and louder.
As it turned out, every time the rear tire gets changed the exhaust seal gets more damaged by re-inserting the exhaust into the seal. I tried to do a quick and dirty job with replacing the seal with some exhaust sealing tape but that did not work. So I had to pay the 35 Euro for this little piece of carbon seal.


When I had my front tire changed my mechanic showed me that the valve had a rip in the rubber part. It was only visible when bending the valve backward. It got changed for the first time.
After the installation of the last rear tire one year ago I noticed that the tire was loosing slowly air and it had to be checked and refilled every couple weeks. Now that I got another new rear tire this one was loosing air within 2-3 days. Checking for punctures, nothing was seen. Checking the valve and bending it backwards I noticed a slight sound of air escaping. The rear tire needed to be dismounted again to install a new valve. 21 Euro later my Spidermax has now 2 straight valves what are not so easy to refill but should last longer than the bent valves.


Replaced 4 nearly new rollers at 56250 after only 350 km. While the rollers did show nearly no sign of use, the transmission behaved as if a roller was broken already (higher rpm and lower Vmax) so I installed 4 Dr.Pulley.
Replaced 4 rollers at 55900 after 5650 km. Very bad quality that batch also.
Replaced 2 x 4 rollers at 50250 after 13000 km. Very bad quality that batch.
Replaced belt and rollers at / after 37000 km see:
Inside the CVT - Belt and Rollers
They still functioned flawless until the change, just the V-max dropped a bit because of flat spots.
These rollers were abused much more than in the regular factory setup, read the woody conversion for more info.
Without all the extra abuse they would have passed the 50000 km easily.
Transmission belt still the original after 33000 km and counting. But after the passing of the 30000 km mark the strangled sea lion is back softly on occasion (even with a removed silver transmission cover)

Brake pads

Single front brake (left side - right lever, always seen from sitting on the bike) first replacement at 11000 km with Re-fleX for 35 Euro a pair.
Second replacement at 27000 km with Brembo for 17.50 Euro a pair (might have been a calculating error when they sold me 2 sets)
Third replacement at 44500 km with Galfer FD074G1651  for 28 Euro

Combi brake front (right side - left lever) first replacement with Re-flex at 27000 km
Swapped the pads at 44500 since the outside pad (1 mm) was much more gone than the inside pad (2.5 mm)
2011-9-24 at 49.000km I installed new Brembo pads. 
2012-10-24 at 65.000km I installed new Galfer pads

The rear brake pad was checked at 27400 km and is still quite like new so it should last at least 50000 km

rear brake pads at 49000km I switched the pads with each other, since the wear was a bit uneven
the lower pad has some pad separation what happened when the splint was lost and they dropped into the wheel during lift off and blocked the wheel.

Spark Plug 2012-08-30

Champion 0km - Champion 30000km - NKG 16000km
Changed the Champion with a new one after 18000 km at 64000 because of occasional engine dying at idle. Adjusting the spark plug gap did not fix this problem.

At 46000 changed back from NKG to OEM Champion for 8.60 Euro since even with the gap adjusted NKG the engine died in cold idle once more.

NKG spark plug after 15000 km from a MASTER engine 500cc

Today the engine died just after I went a few meters. Still rolling in traffic a slight press on the brake and starter - and she restarted instantly.
I remembered that I had a similar problem when the original spark plug reached 28000 km. The NKG spark plug has just a bit over 15000 km and after checking her there was much more than the 0.6-0.7 mm gap. So the NKG last much shorter than the Champion before she needs to be changed or adjusted.
Also the two prong NKG is much harder to adjust than the one prong Champion.

Note to self: next time buy Champion again.

Spark Plug
Should be changed every 12000 km.
Around 28000 km I noticed that the motor needed a bit longer to start and that on a cold engine in idle it sometimes went out. The idle rpm were 100 to 200 rpm lower than the normal 1300.
So it was time to check on the spark plug what I so far did not.

Thanks to the smart designers of the Spidermax this is done quick and easy, just remove the black triangle in the alu frame and you have easy access. It is just clipped in so a flat screw driver works well.

The spark plug gap 0.6-0.7 mm was about 1 mm wide (see the 0.8 mm washer to compare.
The color is OK and the grainy stuff is a result from the additives in the gas. A bit cleaning with a spark plug wire brush and good as new.

Here you see the spark plug model number

I just bend the gap back to 0.6 mm and put the plug back in.
Want to know if YOUR spark plug is a happy camper, compare to these guys here.

Replaced the spark plug at 30000 km to see if there was improvement in starting up or millage.

Starting cold still takes around 3 turns (warm only one), millage improved marginally and the seldom dying of the engine when cold and idle is gone.

After less than 8000 km my rear MAXXIS tire is without profile. That is a very bad for just lousy 8000 km. OK more then 50% was with a pillion and it is mostly 20-30 degrees and full sun, so the streets are warm. But 8000 km, what a shitty quality. Now since we have nearly no rain here, I can drive safely without profile for a while, but the tire lost air.
It is interesting that I actually could ride 2 up with the air below 1 bar and the Spidermax still behaved quite nice, just a bit soft in curves.

MAXXIS rear tire at 8000 km

MAXXIS rear tire replaced at 9700 km tire 150 Euro montage 14 Euro
Since the MAXXIS rear tire indicated already the replacement around 8000 km again I wanted to check out how long the the tire would hold before all the rubber is used up.These pictures show when just the top of the cord carcass is exposed. This is the absolute danger zone. I reached it after the tire had run for 17500 km.
More then 50% was with a pillion and it is mostly 20-30 degrees c (70 to 95 f) and permanent sun, so the streets are warm.
So the next tire should last good 16000 km in my "no rain" riding conditions.
Please be aware that depending on your local law the tire needs to be replaced when you are under a certain minimum profile depth.
MAXXIS rear tire replaced at 27300 km tire 178 Euro montage 20 Euro (extractor was needed because the ball bearing was holding onto the axle, same problem I had with the transmission case)

MAXXIS rear tire replaced at 44750 km tire with Pirelli Sport Demon 150/70-16 for 110 Euro plus montage 10 Euro.
This time there was no thread visible. I ordered a new Pirelli tire but they needed 4 weeks because there was not a single tire in Spain and Pirelli needed some time before they had enough orders in to manufacture at least 10 tires. My luck run out two weeks after I ordered the replacement tire when I was controlled and fined 200 Euro for having a tire without profile.
Here in Spain if you pay your fine within two weeks you can knock of 50%, what I did.
10 minutes after the tire change I got pulled over again from the same policeman who remembered the Spidermax to check up on my rear tire.
Well lesson learned and since the Pirelli tires are below 100 Euro I will keep an eye on my profile more closely.
... and checking my new Pirelli tire, it was made in Brazil ...

checking the Pirelli after 10600 km at 55350 it keeps longer than the MAXXIS since it still has visible center profile but it tells you from the way it handles that it is time to change.
Pirelli Sport Demon 150 70 16 after 10600 km

Changed the Pirelli rear tire after 8 weeks of waiting and 3 times patching the same hole at 57200 km and had it running for 12750 km.
While the Maxxis with zero center profile behaved quite neutral the Pirelli did let me know that it really was time to get a new tire.
patch outside

patch inside
Changed the Pirelli rear tire at 66450 km and had it running for 9250 km. This time the center profile was worn out at some spots to the change mark at other spots to 0. The tire pressure was kept the whole time to 2.2 -2.4 bar. Since I ride much more mountains it seems that this eats up the tire faster.
It was a pleasant thing to see the tire needs change and just to pick up the spare I had going to the shop and have it changed. I already ordered a new tire. The changing cost 15 Euro


Front tire MAXXIS still the original tire at 27400 km

Changed the original MAXXIS front tire after 33360 km.
It was still not used to the thread as I did with the extreme rear tire test.

Found a newly opened car part store NORAUTO who could get me tires for my Spidermax. It was always a long wait with my motorcycle shop and was quite expensive.
The prices at NORAUTO were quite good.
Pirelli Sport Demon 120/80-16 for 89.95 €
The rear tire is only marginally more:
Pirelli Sport Demon 150/70-16 for 93.95 €

Where they charged a bit more than usual was with the changing and mounting.
Changing 19.95 €
Balance 7.95 €
getting rid of the old tire 1.17 €

But for 120 € I am quite happy and the people working there were very friendly.



Checking the Pirelli after 22000 km at 55350 it keeps longer than the MAXXIS since it still has visible quite deep center profile.

Pirelli Sport Demon 120 80 16 after 22000 km


Changing the Pirelli after 25640 km at 59000. It would be OK for a couple more 1000 km but the side is wearing and I will ride a bit more where I do encounter rain, so time to be on the safe side. Price was 115 Euro incl montage and I needed a new valve for 5 Euro also.

 Pirelli Sport Demon 120 80 16 after 25640 km 


After 2 years of low bat warning when I was starting (the brighter headlight what I installed took a toll in slow recharging), my original battery quit at around 45000 km and 4 and a half year. Replaced with a cheap Varta what fits in the hole. But I needed to remove some material of the underside from the Malaguti battery cover since the Varta is a bit taller and has 14 Ah instead of 12Ah.

Changed the clutch at 38000km
The old one had still over 80% of material left!
I had to change it since when I did the video clips where you can see the open clutch in action I overstretched the clutch springs and could not get replacement springs.
The material from the clutch springs is not very elastic, when it stretches even a bit more then normal it stays stretched Replacing the stretched springs with some springs from the hardware store what worked as an emergency measure until replacement arrived. Since the springs were not so strong the clutch started to engage at 1600 rpm and did not disengage fully since one of the fly out arms was too stuck to be moved easily. My idle rpm dropped to 1100 and more than once the bike stalled.
BUT it worked without major problems, I could drive very slowly with 10 km/h a little over idle, the slightly stuck clutch made the bike behave like an automatic car what always creeps a bit if you do not hold it with the brake. Accelerating slowly was necessary until the rpm was over 2500.

Now the old clutch will get cleaned and I will use the fly out arms with the pads as a spare, but it looks like this will be not before I pass something in the 150.000 km area.
 The clutch  pads at 31000 km with 3 mm at the thinnest point

The original Piaggio clutch cost me 128 Euro and 10 Euro for swapping the new one with the old one. Since it is not easy to get a 55mm nut here and that is nothing I need more often, I just took the old clutch with the driven pulley to the shop and asked then to swap it for me.


The belt at 31000 km  26.3 mm wide

The belt at 31000 km with much more little cracks and the white inlay is gone totally.
Funny, but the width of the belt got wider the last 13000 km.
So I guess my dealer was right as I brought the replacement belt at 18000 km when he told me that they seldom replaces the belt on the 500cc engined before 45000 km.
Well it is nice to know I have one at home when I might need one in a year or so.

Here a couple pictures from my post "how many rollers are there"

With 26 mm after 18000 km the belt is nearly new.

Checking for cracks and defects I noticed a few threads  missing in parts of the belt.
These are the worst parts, so I think I shall check back in another 5ooo km to see if there is more noticeable  deterioration.

The original belt was replaced at 37000 km. Checked then belt at 56100 after 19000 km and it still looks like new! No micro cracks, no loose or missing thread (see above) no visible abrasions. It can be assumed that the most stress for the belt comes from the flapping around at low RPM (paint shaker) with the original 8 roller setup.
Piagio MASTER 500cc belt after 19000 km with the Colt Conversion = no more low RPM belt flapping

Air Filter

Found a real car parts store had opened on our island, so I tried to find out about the air filter. It looked like a car air filter to me. And right I was. Malaguti uses the VW Golf II air filter. There are just 2 air filters for that Golf a small one for the small engines and that is the one you want.
I changed the air filter at 32.000
And again at 68.000




  1. this is a kick ass blog, the best I have seen ever.

  2. thanks, I try to share all the info so that people in similar situation can do it them self.

  3. Hi, I Malaguti GT 500 of the 2005 mileage 25000 km there is a problem for the oil pan gets out of fuel, did you have a problem with this and what can be the cause if you had symptoms leszek60@op.pl reply to this email

  4. Hi. Excellent blog! I just bought a Spidermax GT500. Year 2007, 13000km on the clock. I will change the tires from original to Pirelli. At low speed there is little wobble if not hold the handles. Hope to get rid of this with the new tires. What do you think? Did not get user manual with the bike, can i get a PDF version somewhere? The service manual would be the best. There is a download for the service manual but there is no preview, so i don't trust that. And i have a engine failure indication...that is all :-)

  5. Hi I have a Malaguti GT500 in Brasil and unfortunately we do not have dealers available anymore since 2009. I am fasing an issue that after the scooter warms up, it shoots down by it self. I wait couple minutes and I am able to start the engine again. A mecanic shop said it could be the ECU. Any idea? Thanks in advance! Rodrigo Stahl

    1. hello. I used to be the owner of spidermax GTfrom South Korea. If your problem is really caused by the ECU, find a second hand ECU on european Ebay. As you know, the engine of spidermax comes from Piaggio master engine. The ECU is compatible with Piaggio Group's bike , for example, aprilia scarabeo 500, atlantic sprint, gilera nexus 500, piaggio X9, even the peugeot satelis 500. Unfortunately, Malaguti do not run a business any more, they were entirely bankrupted but we can get brand new genuine parts in stock from Italy .


If you want to talk to me, use the comments box at the end of the post. No need to register or log in. If you use a name it is easier to answer to you.