The Puch is Ready!
February 22, 2010, 4:52 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

old puch ready for spring

We bought this Puch mixte from the mid 70s off craigslist 2 years ago. We modified it pretty heavily to make it an extended rider for weekend trips.

The way it sits, it has the following modifications:

repurposed cruiser-style bars

shellacked cork grips

VO brass bell

VO Croissant bag from a few years back mounted on the bars.

Planet Bike black plastic fenders

Brooks B17S Saddle

Suspended Seatpost rear rack from parts bin

New tubes and 27″ Schwalbe white wall tires

I have been using the basement workshop to spruce up the bike a bit. The metal parts had a coating of neglect and in some areas some surface rust. I used Simichrome to rub out the metal and make it shine. The brake levers, stem and cranks probably show the most improvement. Yesterday, I got out some McGuiers Cleaner Wax, and put a light coat of wax on the frame and the chrome bars. Waxing an old bike frame sure can make a world of difference! Angie plans to repurpose an old bag to mount on the back rack. This will be the perfect cruiser for heading to Evanston!


Chain Cleaning-Raleigh Grand Prix
February 8, 2010, 4:20 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

grand prix driveline

Looking at my Grand Prix project from 2008, that I haven’t ridden for a year or so, it appeared that it could use a good once over. In my spare time, I have been using Simichrome on parts of the bike that appear dull or have surface rust. That has worked out.

Yesterday, I decided to tackle the driveline. This bike is close to 40 years old, and I don’t think that its’ chain, or derailleur have been freshened up for quite some time.  I picked up some Simple Green at the store and grabbed a juice bottle from the recycling container.

First, I put the bike on the VO simple work stand on top of some old newsprint. I then got out my Park all in one tool to remove the chain. I have not removed a bike chain in a while, so I am glad that I had a decent tool to help with the job. I made sure that I looked at how the chain was set through both the front and rear derailleur so that the reinstall would go smoothly.

grand prix rear derailleur

I used the chance to get at the sprockets on the rear derailleur with some Simple Green on a rag so remove the dust, dirt and other gunk that had collected over the years.

After I removed the chain, I put in in the juice bottle that had some diluted Simple Green and hot water. I shook the bottle up for good measure and let it sit for an hour or so. The gunk was definitely turning the cleaning solution a dark gray color. I then drained the bottle and put in a fresh hot water and Simple Green Solution and repeated the process.

simple green doing its' thing

After it looked like the bottle cleaning was complete, I made a hook out of a coat hanger and fished the chain out of the solution. I set the wet chain on some newspaper. I then spent 20 minutes or so with a rag and cleaned between the links. It is not perfect, but quite an improvement.

Then I reinstalled the chain on the bike, carefully re threading the chain as it was originally. I then got some Finish Line Dry lube and moved the pedals and applied the lube to the chain. After that, I spin the pedals a bit to work the lube through. I am pretty happy how it turned out. Now I need to find a saddle for the bike.