Classic Puch Bergmeister Touring, Commuter Bike Restored, by Rideon
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This is a '60's Puch Bergmeister I found on its' way to the scrap metal yard. Covered in rust, rust rigid
chain, bent fork steer tube, bent dropouts, broken stem shifters and corroded copper stem.
Reason for completing this project is a simple appreciation of the frame's unique design including nicely shaped lugs, pump carrier brazing and the inner top tube cable routing for the rear brake.
The fork steer tube needed to be straightened and a couple of stripped threads were carefully removed for the bearing cup nut to thread on properly. During this project I discovered just how difficult it is to find any threaded steerer cable hangers as the original one was very rusted, pitted and I used it on another bike which also needed a cable hanger. Using a dremel tool with a cutting wheel I was able to shape a cable hanger from another frame to fit.
This model of Puch Bergmeister originally had the copper frame but it was way too rusted and corroded to be salvaged, which led to the brushed and polished steel frame pictured here. As a clear coat I used the Ever Brite product Protecta Clear and have had fairly good results for the very reasonable price of $19.95. Anyone who has ever attempted a brushed and polished finish knows how difficult it can be to get good results without a lot of rust. Here on the Texas Gulf Coast the humidity and salt air contributed a bit more of a challenge in keeping this frame rusting. I had noticed some mild rust showing after a couple weeks and went over it with a quality car wax and that has worked very well.
The long wheel base on this bike due in large part to the fork rake certainly doesn't make this the most nimble handling ride, certainly don't see a bike messenger zipping through traffic on this one but it rides straight and true and would make for a nice light touring bike. I had considered a Brooks saddle and maybe even leather bar tape. I liked the original San Marco Toureur saddle and seat post for its' unique proprietary mounting. I would have had to replace the seat post with clamp, glad I didn't. Of course, new bar tape and non aero brake hoods.
Upgraded to 14 speed with 7 speed freewheel as I kept the 27 x 11/4 wheels to preserve authenticity and because I already had a front wheel of that size. Original wing style nuts are a nice touch and they polished up very nicely. Frame cable stops were used with 2 x 7 downtube shifters. Left friction and right indexed, which is the reason for the inexpensive SIS shimano derailleur but hey, it indexes nicely for smooth shifting. Most if not all of the parts and accessories for these types of projects can be found at Jenson USA as they regularly have discount sale prices, fast shipping and reliable service. I have provided a banner link for their site.
Replaced cottered crankset as it was severely rusted and pitted with Sunlite alloy double crankset, new kmc chain, freestyle block pedals and fenders to make this a fun commuter bike in style and functionality. The fenders are off of an old Schwinn Collegiate I found headed to the scrap metal yard along with this bike. The fenders cleaned up very well and painted the fender stays with Rustoleum primer and paint.
I'm very pleased with how the hard work put into this project came to completion and have enjoyed riding it some. However, this bike is for sale so I don't ride it too often.
Pictured is the copper alloy stem I was able to salvage as it was not bent just corroded with mild pitting and in no way effects ride performance or function. An attractive part of the bike's style and era with vintage stem bell as a commuter friendly touch.