PUCH 250 SGS

Restoring a barn-fresh 1966 Sears Allstate

CVMG Paris Rally: 2015

Another Paris Rally, great weather – here’s a few pics of what caught my eye this year.

 

 

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Spring in my step

With spring just around the corner, and the annual pilgrimage to the CVMG Paris Rally, I have been working on getting my Puch 250 SGS suspension overhauled. The rubber  seals have long gone brittle and what little oil remains is thick and gooey.

IMG_0003The forks I discovered are bent, not surprising considering the condition of the front fender, the dented fork covers and handlebar into the tank. One is bent more than the other – I will seek out a hydraulic shop to see if they can straighten them out.

I took the shocks and forks apart to assess the condition of the components in case more than consumables are needed. Luckily,  seems all is in order, just dirty, gooey and decomposing or brittle rubber bits. One fork seal was brittle enough to almost cut my hand, the other was fairly supple.

20150218_093335_cThe rear brake lever (part no. 175.4011.2) I ordered from Motor West arrived today, or should I say the envelope arrived. It appears the envelope tore open and the lever fell out.

Packing tape was invented for a reason, Matt. *Update: Matt has graciously offered to send me another at no charge. That’s class.

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M125 – seize the day

I was in the process of ordering parts for my ’66 250 SGS when I thought I “might as well” get fork and shock seals for the M125, save on shipping.

The M125 has languished in the corner of the garage since I bought it. The engine was seized and the kick lever moves up and down – something is broken in there. I have always hoped that a squirt of oil down the spark plug hole and  and a quick fix on the starter mechanism would have em laughing as I bing-batta-binged around.

Starter chain broken.

Starter chain broken.

You know how “while I’m at it” syndrome works; I thought, no point ordering fork seals for a bike that won’t start, so I cracked open the kick starter and discovered a broken chain. Great, not too hard to replace, I hope. I will have to hunt down the owner of the bin seen here.

Next issue was the seized piston. When I first took the head off I was greeted by a gritty, twiggy, sandy sludge sitting on top of the piston. I guess the previous owner let it sit outside without a plug….. explains the seizure.

I let is sit over night with WD40 and tried to move the piston by the rear wheel in gear, no luck. The next day I decided to use a smoky-wrench. I got the barrel up to smoking and then applied some MBH (Mighty Big Hammer).

Actually it was a small hammer (until it connected with my left index finger…) and a long piece of wood. The pine stick eventually shattered so I switched to a steel pipe with a wooden puck on top of the piston.

After I got to BDC, I raised the barrel on wooden blocks and used a combination of pounding and at the very end turning the clutch with a oil wrench. The clutch was protected by a slice of old Norton inner tube.

The bore looks ok, some flaking at the very top and a 6mm strip missing between the exhaust ports, you can just see it in the video above. I figure there is no compression happening there anyway but concerned it may score the rings. I am hoping that I can get away without a re-chroming.

The piston looks ok, the rings are obviously gone! The crank has light rust and the big ends are tight, so I’ll have to crack the cases open and see what’s happening inside.

Alas, it looks like years of sitting under a deck with no spark-plug have taken their toll. I was hoping I could get away with a squirt of, squirt of gas and a good kick as I did with the ’66 250. I literally almost fell off the bike in shock and when it started on the third kick, yes started, not cough or sputter, but started!


fog machine

 

 

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New tires – old Puch

Original Semperit tire.

Original Semperit tire.

The original equipment Semperit tires on the ’66 Puch 250 SGS are getting a wee bit, well, tired. With my current push to get the old girl road legal I’ve ordered tires and checked the brake pads. Really, it’s time I showed the bike some love, especially after several years of being ridden hard and put away wet at Paris, literally.

I’ve ordered a pair of Duro HF319 from a local dealer, the tread pattern looks pretty vintage so they should look right.

DURO_HF-319

Part number : 113113

  • Designed as a general replacement tire
  • Excellent load carrying capabilities
  • Can be used as a front and rear tire
  • Excellent puncture resistance

I mean really, isn’t that the basic description of a tire?!

I will also look into getting a 16″ rim for the Velorex to lower the hack as it is currently wearing a 19″ – then perhaps I’ll need another Duro.

Sears Allstate Puch 175 60_57

click to enlarge

 

I came upon this page from a Sears catalogue a while back, it is a great illustration of the Puch badged as a Sears Allstate, although I think the illustrator didn’t understand how brake and clutch levers worked. I’m pretty intrigued by the brown sack outfit the guy on the left is wearing. Is that rain gear? 

 

 

 

 

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Snow can’t stop a Puch

IMAGE: JOHN CHILLINGWORTH/PICTURE POST/GETTY IMAGES

Photographer John Chillingworth took these photos at the 1953 Motorcycle Skiing championships, held at Ehrwald in Tyrol, Austria. The skiers held on to ropes attached to the backs of motorcycles  — some even with sidecars — which had spiked wheels to grip the snow.

German skier Karl Baier won the championship that year. In four years of racing, his driver had never been hurt.

The pictures were first featured in the UK’s Picture Post magazine, which featured more than 400 of Chillingworth’s photo essays.

Originally posted on Mashable.

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