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Garage Finds: Peter Mooney, Woodrup Cycles, Puch & Nishiki

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Garage Finds: Peter Mooney, Woodrup Cycles, Puch & Nishiki

Old 03-21-23, 01:21 PM
  #26  
gazman22
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
-----

Puch -

if curious, it might be of interest to see if there is/was a parallel A-D model

recall the A-D line as launching 1977-78...may be off slightly

Puch looks as though it may be slightly earlier than this so possible there may no be a close parallel

-----
This is the Puch Royal X, there was also a Puch Royal Force. I do not know the time and feature differences between the two. One of them paralleled the A-D Vent Noir.
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Old 03-21-23, 02:12 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by unworthy1 View Post

BITD we used these "rub-downs" a lot for what we called "comps" (not for complimentary but for comprehensive) and by a brand name "Cromatec". They were made with a process that shared some aspects of screen-printing but also different, and the finished product was too. But liquid inks used were said to be lacquers and adhesives could be a sticky wax (default) or something more aggressive if you spec'd that.

My coworkers did our own informal "weather test" by applying rubdowns to a Honda Civic the owner promised to never wash. We were surprised with how well and long they held up to wind, rain and direct sunshine but NOT to abrasion.
What you refer to as "rub-downs" are really nice, because they apply without the typical carrier film used in decals. And yes, they're pretty robust, and even have a bit of a raised surface, so the "Phil" logos on the example hubs felt similar to Braille letters. Never had them long enough to know if they'd hold up against UV or repeated wet-weather riding, but I'm pretty sure the use of anything abrasive would wipe them out double-quick.

Btw, my photo represents the newly-applied "Phil" logo on the rear hub in the foreground, and the front hub beyond just prior to addling its replacement logo.

My intention was to show how boring the hub shells appear when logo-less - and how cool they look with a bright, shiny, and new logo

DD
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Old 03-21-23, 02:48 PM
  #28  
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Man what a day! Everyone a gem!
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Old 03-21-23, 03:19 PM
  #29  
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At least a week's worth of projects there.
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Old 03-21-23, 03:51 PM
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Ahh...'full Campy'.


Nice score, and super fun projects to keep you busy. I hope they are your size!
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Old 03-22-23, 12:00 AM
  #31  
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Great score on the Mooney as by Peter's own admission, there are fewer than a thousand of those in the world. I've had the privilege of riding four of his bikes: #688 and #716 which met unfortunate ends. I currently have and still very much enjoy #729 and #763 which live in my BF photo albums. The example here seems to be very early in Peter's career. Would you mind telling the serial number? I know that on his bikes, at least from 1999 when I first retained him as a builder, it was stamped on the underside of the bottom bracket downtube insertion.

I last spoke with Peter on the phone this past September, and the first thing he said to me was "if you're looking for a new frame, I'm not your guy." I don't know when he's leaving Belmont Wheelworks, but I suspect, from what he told me, he shares Richard Sachs' disillusion with the direction of the bike industry. It must be quite crushing to spend a life perfecting the craft of building heirloom bike frames only to have an industry that rejects the concept altogether. I hope he understands the respect that the few who have and admire his frames have for his dedication to the craft.
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Old 03-22-23, 12:53 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by gazman22 View Post
Does your Mooney have a serial number? I have not located one yet but it could be hiding under dust and crud.
If he stamped them like mine, the SN is on the underside of the bottom bracket downtube insertion.

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Old 03-22-23, 06:56 AM
  #33  
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The Puch Royal X was, to my knowledge, a 1976-only model sold in the U.S. Mine was purchased new for me by my father c. April 1978 from George Crook at Bikeways of Atlanta, who noted there was apparently quantity in a warehouse that remained unsold. It is the same frame as the better known Royal Force, which sold for a few more years. The frameset is full Reynolds 531 DB throughout, and Puch advertised their precise mitering of tubes and that these were silver-brazed in Graz, Austria - and that they were brazed by the same people who built up the Austro-Daimler bikes, which were pricier and nicer.

The Royal X was kind of an oddball. The Royal Force came spec'ed with full black anodized Dura-Ace components and tubulars and was a nice racing bike, roughly comparable to the original matte black and gold Austro-Daimler Vent Noir. The Royal X came with an oddball parts spec - Dura-Ace 42/52 crankset and BB and headset, SunTour Cyclone (short 24T cage) rear and front derailleurs with power ratchet downtube shifters, Weinmann Carrera sidepulls (the nice deluxe version!), Normandy Luxe Competition high flange hubs laced to bog-standard Weinmann 27 x 1 1/4 rims with Vredestein gumwall tires, SR World Champion bars, stem and SR LaPrade seatpost. Pedals were some KKT or MKS thing, and the stock saddle was a Gillux something or another plastic saddle. The relatively heavy clincher wheels and the stock 14-22 5-speed Regina Oro freewheel made no sense - mine was changed out to a 14-24 before I left the shop, and late that year I swapped out the wheelset for Weyless sealed bearing hubs laced to Mavic Montlhery tubular rims. It made more sense then.

They came in two colors, the salmon of the OP's bike, and the white like mine -



The only literature I have ever seen featuring the Royal X was a small poster - it was meant to be folded out, and the rear of the poster had panels featuring the different Puch models and their specifications. The only copy of that I have ever seen was the one I got when I got the bike, and that copy is long lost, so keep your eyes out for one! The 1977 catalog, when the only full 531 Puch was the Royal Force, is out there online if you search.

The previous owner's modifications are all similar to what I did with mine when I was riding it most - I replaced the narrow-range freewheel with the then-new SunTour Ultra 6 Winner 13-28. I switched to a Shimano Crane for the same reasons this bike's owner did, it was comparable to the Cyclone but could handle more teeth. The Phil hubs and racks point to the other direction these bikes can easily be adapted towards. Geometry wise, they're not too far away from a Raleigh Competition Mk. II or a Gran Sport, but with arguably nicer construction and fewer braze-ons. A little more trail, like 52 mm vs. the 41 or so of the Raleighs - and oddly enough, all of the ones I have seen had 57cm-ish top tubes, kinda like Raleighs.

The Weinmann Carreras like these are my favorite single-pivot sidepull. They were Weinmann's last shot at competing with Campagnolo, and when cleaned up they are very smooth and work nicely. I have a set of the slightly later, slightly cheaper looking version on my favorite Gitane fixed-gear, and they work as well but aren't quite as pretty.

There really aren't very many of these out there. I foolishly sold mine to a friend of mine in Macon, GA, in 1987, because I just HAD to have that Fender Vibroluxe amp - then realized I missed it, went to buy it back, and learned it had been stolen. When I got back into bikes in '97, I started searching, but I could never find a white 23-in example for sale, only the 21-in like the OP's. By pure freakish chance, one day on a trawl of FB marketplace, I typed "Puch" into the search engine, and this bike popped up in Stone Mountain, GA. A few messages and a phone call to an area bike shop and I got it for $100 plus boxing and shipping. It wasn't until I was hauling it out of the box that I took a long look at the scars on the headbadge and freaked out - it was MY long-lost Royal X.
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Old 03-22-23, 05:36 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by MooneyBloke View Post
If he stamped them like mine, the SN is on the underside of the bottom bracket downtube insertion.


Thanks!

Given the 40+ bikes in my garage I painfully left all but the Nishiki (which I will rebuild and sell) in my mothers garage (5 hours away) for future retrieval. But now that I have this info I will have my sister take a look. I did inspect the BB but really only its underside and it was very dusty and grimy down there. I will report back. Nice to be a part of a club of 1k and I am also curious to roughly date the bike. It is a very simple but beautifully executed frame. A keeper for me. I look forward to riding it and finding out more.

Last edited by gazman22; 03-22-23 at 06:47 PM.
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Old 03-22-23, 05:43 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
There really aren't very many of these out there. I foolishly sold mine to a friend of mine in Macon, GA, in 1987, because I just HAD to have that Fender Vibroluxe amp - then realized I missed it, went to buy it back, and learned it had been stolen. When I got back into bikes in '97, I started searching, but I could never find a white 23-in example for sale, only the 21-in like the OP's. By pure freakish chance, one day on a trawl of FB marketplace, I typed "Puch" into the search engine, and this bike popped up in Stone Mountain, GA. A few messages and a phone call to an area bike shop and I got it for $100 plus boxing and shipping. It wasn't until I was hauling it out of the box that I took a long look at the scars on the headbadge and freaked out - it was MY long-lost Royal X.
Great write up and awesome story about ending up with your original bike! I will have to do some soul searching at some point to decide which of these stay and which go. Fortunately those decisions are down the road. I look forward to rebuilding all of them, getting them in riding shape, and knees willing, enjoying them all for a while.

Thanks for the input!
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Old 05-30-23, 04:18 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by MooneyBloke
Great score on the Mooney as by Peter's own admission, there are fewer than a thousand of those in the world. I've had the privilege of riding four of his bikes: #688 and #716 which met unfortunate ends. I currently have and still very much enjoy #729 and #763 which live in my BF photo albums. The example here seems to be very early in Peter's career. Would you mind telling the serial number? I know that on his bikes, at least from 1999 when I first retained him as a builder, it was stamped on the underside of the bottom bracket downtube insertion.

I last spoke with Peter on the phone this past September, and the first thing he said to me was "if you're looking for a new frame, I'm not your guy." I don't know when he's leaving Belmont Wheelworks, but I suspect, from what he told me, he shares Richard Sachs' disillusion with the direction of the bike industry. It must be quite crushing to spend a life perfecting the craft of building heirloom bike frames only to have an industry that rejects the concept altogether. I hope he understands the respect that the few who have and admire his frames have for his dedication to the craft.
It took me a while to get back to the bike. I was back in Oregon this past weekend and now have the bike home. I did speak with Peter once and he said the serial # would be where yours is located but perhaps it is to filled with paint on my bike. He also said it would be on the steerer tube which turned out to be a much easier find. So, with out further ado, this bike is #146. I look forward too riding this one!

And to keep the streak of purchased bikes while visiting my mother alive, I came home with a nice XO-2...




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Old 05-31-23, 12:30 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by gazman22
And to keep the streak of purchased bikes while visiting my mother alive, I came home with a nice XO-2...

Alright, alright, I'll give mine a call...





Wonderful bikes, what a great set to find.
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Old 05-31-23, 06:57 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by gazman22
Definitely what I thought but absolutely no branding on them. Are there Phil hubs with no branding?
I had a set of similar Phil hubs that I purchased in 1972 for my first set of wheels I built. Eventually the red 'Phil' logo kinda disappeared after 3 or 4 decades as the center part increased in rust.
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Old 05-31-23, 10:18 AM
  #39  
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Do you have a side-on pic of the Woodrup, full bike?

Edit: Sorry finally found it - it's my size!

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Old 05-31-23, 11:03 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by gazman22
So, with out further ado, this bike is #146. I look forward too riding this one!
Were you able to call back and find out anything about #146? That sounds either late seventies or early eighties to me.
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Old 05-31-23, 11:06 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by MooneyBloke
Were you able to call back and find out anything about #146? That sounds either late seventies or early eighties to me.
Peter is only in on Sundays. I plan on reaching out this Sunday. I will let you know what I find out.
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