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Show your Austrian bikes...

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Show your Austrian bikes...

Old 04-27-19, 04:45 PM
  #76  
Mr. 66
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Originally Posted by 3speedslow View Post
It just might be an Austrian marque. Any frame exploring yet? What colour is the steering tube?
I haven't had the chance to yet.
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Old 04-29-19, 08:29 AM
  #77  
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This is the only known photo of my original Puch Royal X. I believe they were only cataloged in 1976 and used the same frame but less costly parts than the more frequently seen Royal Force. I got mine in 1978, and by the time this photo was taken in '79 I had replaced the stock Normandy Luxe Competition/Weinmann 27-in clinchers with Weyless hubs laced to Mavic Montlhery tubular rims.


And this is the current status of the only 23-in white Royal X I have found for sale after more than 20 years of searching. This bike and its build will get its own thread soon ...

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Old 04-29-19, 09:25 AM
  #78  
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That is quite the long quest! Did it come with a fork?
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Old 04-29-19, 09:54 AM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by 3speedslow View Post
That is quite the long quest! Did it come with a fork?
It was a long quest - I stupidly sold it in '87 to buy an amp, went to buy it back from that friend to learn it had been stolen within a couple of months. When I started riding again in '97 I started looking for one.

It actually came as a complete bike. And it's the damnedest thing - all of the parts I had replaced on my original bike have been replaced on this one, too - but they're not the parts I put on the bike, i.e., there was a 105 rear derailleur instead of the Crane I had on mine, and some 'orrible cutout saddle instead of the Ideale 90 the dealer put on at my request in '78, and KKT pedals instead of the Lyotard Berthet platforms I had installed (replacing stock MKS) - even though the wheels are 27-in clinchers with Normandy Luxe Competition hubs, they're not the stock wheels like the ones I replaced, these are themselves replacements with Mavic Module E rims. Hell, they could be the stock wheels that someone replaced the rims, but there's this scar on the head badge that rings a memory of a similar scar on my old one. It's not inconceivable that it actually IS my old bike; if it turns out not to be, it surely came out of the same shop.

There just weren't that many of them made, so they're kinda rare. Not high dollar rare, 'cause nobody's ever even heard of them, nobody won races on them, they were the down-market version of the Royal Force, itself a down-market version of the Vent Noir, which was itself a down-market shadow of the Ultimas and Super Leichts just as Puchs (at least in the U.S.) were the also-rans behind the Austro-Daimlers.

But now that I have this one, knowing what I know now about bikes, I am struck by how neatly it's put together, how durable the chrome has proven. I'm really eager to get this bike up and running again, and for now I'll settle for a good cleaning, touch-up and build and adjust with period-correct parts. Maybe later I'll have it repainted professionally, but the artwork could be challenging because currently I can't find repro decals. If anyone has Greg's ear at Cyclomondo, you could do the same decals with "Force" and "X" and get both bike patterns ups, covering the '76 Xs and the '76-77 Forces. In other words, all five or so of us who might want them ...


Last edited by rustystrings61; 04-29-19 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 04-29-19, 11:45 AM
  #80  
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Recently acquired. Unfortunately Iíll be replacing this gorgeous DA crankset because a 53-42 doesnít make sense on a brevet bike.
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Old 04-29-19, 11:55 AM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by samkl View Post
Recently acquired. Unfortunately I’ll be replacing this gorgeous DA crankset because a 53-42 doesn’t make sense on a brevet bike.
I've been pondering the same thing with my Puch, which also has 1st gen DA cranks, and considering getting a longer spindle and running a triplizer ring to get 50/46/28 half-step + granny.

And that is a beautiful Vent Noir!
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Old 04-29-19, 01:33 PM
  #82  
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Thanks. And interesting idea. Iíd love to keep the crank with those drilled chainrings. The problem I didnít consider when I bought this beaut is that changing the gearing on a bike of this era is a real challenge. Changing one part means changing pretty much everything.

I need new wheels anyway, so I figure I might as well upgrade to 9 speed and spread the dropouts. Which means a new RD to handle the new cogs.

I can put on a sugino compact crankset and keep the FD. But if I put on a triple or triplizer, Iíll need a new front and rear derailleur to handle the extra capacity.

It pains me a little (for reasons beyond financial), but bikes are meant to be ridden, and if I can improve the gearing then this would be a really ridable, useful bike for a long time.

Oy. The tribulations of being a C&V enthusiast!

Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
I've been pondering the same thing with my Puch, which also has 1st gen DA cranks, and considering getting a longer spindle and running a triplizer ring to get 50/46/28 half-step + granny.

And that is a beautiful Vent Noir!
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Old 05-20-19, 09:34 AM
  #83  
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Here's the Royal X this weekend, reassembled about as close to stock as it's likely to get - unless I get a hornet in my helmet and decide to modify a SunTour Cyclone short cage to take a VXs cage to manage the 28T cog ... and I'm sure there's some cotton bar tape in this bike's near future. I rode it this weekend, including my first decently long ride all year, and I was shocked at how comfortable and familiar it is after all these years. The real surprise, though, is how well those wheels with compromised Normandy Luxe Comp hubs roll. About the fifth or sixth time I passed my riding buddy on a descent, I asked, "Now, why exactly did I stop using 27 in tires at 70 psi?" Love the Paselas! I was also continuously pleased with how well everything on this bike works, especially the Cyclone front derailleur but even the old 600 EX rear unit. By the end of Sunday evening's ride, the noisy front brake was audibly calmer and closer to normal. There are no words for how happy I am with this bike. It needs its own thread soon.

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Old 05-20-19, 09:46 AM
  #84  
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Awesome! I know your summer riding will be spent on this one.
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Old 05-20-19, 10:10 AM
  #85  
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@rustystrings61,

That is such a great story, and it's incredible how good the bike still looks after all those years!

Best of luck with it.
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