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Late 80s Puch Mistral Leader

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Late 80s Puch Mistral Leader

Old 08-13-19, 08:44 AM
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BFisher 
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Late 80s Puch Mistral Leader

I hesitated to create a thread for this bike as it's not really all that special. It's a mid-range model for sure. But, I have only seen two others like it online, and I did score it new in box. This is a Piaggio-built Puch, made from Columbus Cromor with "Quattro" branded components. Here's the breakdown:

∑ Frame/Fork: Columbus Cromor, 55cm ST, 55cm TT, 40cm chain stay, 105cm wheelbase, Gipiemme forkends and dropouts.

∑ Headset: Ofmega Master

∑ Crankset: Ofmega “Quattro” 52/42

∑ Bottom Bracket: Ofmega

∑ Pedals: Ofmega Master Pista w/Ale clips & white leather straps

∑ Derailleurs: Suntour “Quattro”(Cyclone 7000)

∑ Freewheel: Suntour 7 speed 13-26, w/ Suntour chain

∑ Shifters: Suntour Accushift downtube

∑ Rims: Ambrosio Extra Elite Durex 19 36h

∑ Hubs: Quattro (Ofmega?)

∑ Brakes: Modolo “Quattro” (Mach 1?)

∑ Handlebar: Puch 39cm (ITM?)

∑ Stem: Puch branded ITM, 80mm

∑ Seat Post: ITM fluted, 27.2

∑ Saddle: Iscaselle, white

∑ Wrap: Bike ribbon, white

There are also the following identifying characteristics:

S/N: 2698 9 - L
Markings on the box: PD937 Leader 55cm Pearl wt. PH29xx27523 BUS
"The Sports Authority" (red and black rectangular sticker)

From what I've been able to gather, this seems like a near exact match to a 1989 Bianchi Campione D'Italia. The pearl white paint is really nice! Ride-wise, it is an absolute joy! At 55cm, it is as small as I can comfortably go. The bike is stable at speed, and corners really well. With 253 miles on it, I am really happy with it and will hopefully enjoy it for many, many years. I may switch to a longer stem at some point. We'll see. I have posted photos of it elsewhere in this forum, but here it is again.


Just after initial assembly




Trying to capture the paint



During a ride on 8/12.
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Old 08-13-19, 09:48 AM
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New in the box? Cool. Yeah some later ‘80s Puchs were built by Bianchi so the probably the same as the CdI except color and decals.
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Old 08-13-19, 09:57 AM
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This bike looks great. The parts group is good and those are quality rims. Enjoy your new old bike!
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Old 08-13-19, 09:59 AM
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WOW! that is super clean.
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Old 08-13-19, 10:13 AM
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How delightful! Kudos.
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Old 08-13-19, 11:03 AM
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As someone said about one of my bike frames recently -- for nothing special, that's pretty special! Very nice!
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Old 08-13-19, 11:56 AM
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Thank you all kindly.

As far as the rims, as a wheel set they ride really well. I like them a lot for that. But, their reputation for tire mounting difficulty is well deserved. The bike came with wire-bead Michelin Select Sport 700x20 tires. My initial plan was to swap them for some new, kevlar-bead lightweight Panaracers. The Panaracers would not go on the rims without severe struggle. No way was I gonna get stranded with a flat on tires I couldn't mount. So, I put the original tires back on and have been riding them. Surprisingly, those NOS tires ride really, really well. They shocked me, and are holding up well so far. On these rims they actually measure 22mm wide.
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Old 08-13-19, 05:42 PM
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Like it just came off the factory line!
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Old 08-13-19, 06:24 PM
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Here are the instructions and 3 year guarantee that came in the box. It appeared that the little green and white label was a sticker that had been attached to the seat tube, but the glue has since dried up and it fell off at some point.

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Old 08-13-19, 10:13 PM
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Pretty! Those Mistrals always have sharp paint schemes.

I've got an early 80s 56cm 531 Puch and enjoy its ride.
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Old 10-01-19, 06:00 AM
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I made some changes to the Puch recently.




I changed the 80mm ITM stem for a 100mm Nitto Dynamic.

It's a beautiful stem, and I really could use a bit more reach on this bike.

The other change was to the brakes. I swapped out the Modolo "Quattro" (Mach 1)
for Ultegra 6500 calipers w/BL-R400 levers.

I do not have a positive opinion of the Modolo levers or calipers that came with this bike.

There is no comparison to the new setup. Braking is excellent now.

Last edited by BFisher; 10-01-19 at 10:01 AM.
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Old 10-01-19, 08:39 AM
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Do you have any pictures of the box and packaging? It was really unique.
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Old 10-01-19, 10:00 AM
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I don't have any pics of the packaging. It came in a standard bike box - brown cardboard with green lettering, I believe. Small parts were in bags and a small white box.

On the outside of the carton there was a "Sports Authority" sticker. I assume that's where it was bought way back when.
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Old 02-09-20, 08:03 AM
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Tire width

Hello I actually just got my hands on the exact same bike. Not in as nice shape as this one but want to make it more modern. So I was wondering how wide of a tire would fit on this frame.
Thank you.
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Old 02-09-20, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Mastrofrancesco View Post
Hello I actually just got my hands on the exact same bike. Not in as nice shape as this one but want to make it more modern. So I was wondering how wide of a tire would fit on this frame.
Thank you.
Just took a check and it looks like there'd be 3 or 4 millimeters of clearance at the chainstays with a 28mm tire. Of course, tire widths often vary from stated size, and rim width plays a role too. If I wanted to go wide on this bike, I'd try 28's. Personally, I have no desire to go wider than 25 on it.
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Old 02-09-20, 08:28 AM
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Thank you BF. I have some nasty roads to get through on my way to work so thatís why Iím asking. Iíve got some conti ride tour 32ís that are really only 28ís when installed so that sounds like it should work. Now I have to see if I can also get some fender/ mudguards on as well. Iíll post some picís when it finally comes together. Thank you so much for your help.
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Old 03-18-20, 01:23 PM
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Mastrofrancesco , Did you ever get it together?

Well, I continued on with the upgrades and decided to go with a triple/ 9 speed setup. The inspiration for the triple came from the Box O' Crap by way of an Ultegra 6503 front derailleur, so many thanks to the person who put that in the box. Got the 6500 triple crankset, and long cage derailleur to match, Ultegra 12-27 cassette, KMC X9.93 chain, and Dura Ace 7700 downtube shifters. Wheels are Mavic Open Pro laced to 105 R7000 hubs from Velomine. DA SL-7700 with Ultegra 6500 works excellent! I had a very nice 25-mile shakedown ride today. Smooth, fast, quiet - a better bike than the rider, and prettier too!

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Old 03-18-20, 04:12 PM
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BF,
Wow that Italian Puch looks great. Once I have enough posts I can post some pics. I got myself a parts bike that had Tiagra 9 speed triple and Iím hoping to put that on but with brifters. When I get the chance Iíll get it together. Seeing the work you did is a real inspiration so thank you.!
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Old 03-18-20, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Mastrofrancesco View Post
BF,
Wow that Italian Puch looks great. Once I have enough posts I can post some pics. I got myself a parts bike that had Tiagra 9 speed triple and Iím hoping to put that on but with brifters. When I get the chance Iíll get it together. Seeing the work you did is a real inspiration so thank you.!
Thanks, and I look forward to seeing your build.
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Old 03-20-20, 12:07 AM
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Re that sticker that was left off or fell off your bike @BFisher, here's a pic of a Puch Mistral I own (and it's for sale, folks, check out the "for sale sub-forum") with same exact sticker. As I noted in another Puch thread there was a Bianchi importer headquartered in South City (as we in the Bay Area call So.S.F.). Back in the day (late 1980s early '90s) a Design firm I worked for made a pitch to them to try to get some work...after pitching to Specialized in Mountain View and striking out! We did a company group photo shoot of all employees in our best cycling gear posed with our best bikes...to show how cycling-centered we were. Neither firm bought it, and we went back to designing beer, food packaging and corporate ID graphics. Nothing with wheels.


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Old 03-20-20, 07:18 AM
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That's a cool story, and unfortunate that the effort didn't close the deal.

Good luck with the sale.
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Old 03-20-20, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by unworthy1 View Post
Re that sticker that was left off or fell off your bike @BFisher, here's a pic of a Puch Mistral I own (and it's for sale, folks, check out the "for sale sub-forum") with same exact sticker. As I noted in another Puch thread there was a Bianchi importer headquartered in South City (as we in the Bay Area call So.S.F.). Back in the day (late 1980s early '90s) a Design firm I worked for made a pitch to them to try to get some work...after pitching to Specialized in Mountain View and striking out! We did a company group photo shoot of all employees in our best cycling gear posed with our best bikes...to show how cycling-centered we were. Neither firm bought it, and we went back to designing beer, food packaging and corporate ID graphics. Nothing with wheels.


Cool SSF story! My work city for almost 20 years.
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Old 03-20-20, 11:14 PM
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I bought a NOS lugged, made in Italy frameset. HiTen. 8 lb frame and fork. Handles well, sure is pretty.
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Old 03-20-20, 11:56 PM
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Just here to say that if these are your not that special bikes you should post more of them 😂

In fact, I just changed around many of the vintage bicycle accounts I was following on Instagram in order to be able to see more mid range builds and restorations as I started to realize I was mostly only seeing one exotic italian racer after another. Hell, itís nice to even see some nice UO-8 or similar restorations every once in awhile. It doesnít really get old to me when itís pretty and done well.

Last edited by polymorphself; 03-21-20 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 03-21-20, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by polymorphself View Post
Just here to say that if these are your not that special bikes you should post more of them 😂

In fact, I just changed around many of the vintage bicycle accounts I was following on Instagram in order to be able to see more mid range builds and restorations as I started to realize I was mostly only seeing one exotic italian racer after another. Hell, itís nice to even see some nice UO-8 or similar restorations everyone once in awhile. It doesnít really get old to me when itís pretty and done well.
I appreciate your compliment. Thank you.

It is nice to appreciate the full spectrum of the bike world. The members here post some incredible builds and collections, from low end to high. It really is amazing. Something for everybody, really. And while this Puch was not a high end bike in its day, and therefore not all that special to many, there sure is something special going on when this rider takes it for a spin. It's a keeper for sure.
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