1978 Puch Maxi Luxe Questions???

Herman Kantz /
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After having two motorcycle shops and a "number" of motorcycles in my 73 years I ended 54 years of motorcycle riding last fall when I sold my last bike (a 2017 Kawasaki Z1000).

In June of this year a great friend and Christian brother gave me a 1978 Puch Maxi Luxe High torque 2 HP that he had bought over 21 years ago and had never started it.

He had bought it from a guy who had bought it from a doctor whose son had ridden it. From the mileage when I got it (327.5 miles) I suspect that it hadn't been started since the kid parked it the last time.

Before I spent any time cleaning and detailing it I wanted to get it running.

The engine was locked up and before I pulled the head and jug I "strung up" the bike by the top triple tree from one of the shop girders to get the cylinder in a vertical direction.

I pulled out the spark plug and pumped in some Kroil. After letting it sit a few ours I took of the mag cover and putting a socket on the crank nut with a breaker bar gently rocked it back and for a few times and the piston freed up and turned over easy.

Everything in the mag area looked pristine which was good to see and spinning over the engine showed a nice spark.

I disassembled the carb and gave its parts several hours in the heated ultrasonic cleaner using SafetyKleen.

I then reassembled the carb with all new gaskets from the jug back.

The original petcock fill tube had to be cut to get it out of the tank and then the remaining tube and filter were fished out with a flexible gripper.

I pressure washed the tank until I couldn't get anything else out of the petcock attachment and then used compressed air to blow out any remaining debris, blowing in both directions (from filler neck and from petcock attachment).

I then used the electrolysis method to remove all the rust.

Pressure washing (from both directions) and then high pressure dry air (from both directions) left the tank acceptably clean.

Knowing it would be awhile until I got back to it I immediately topped of the tank with diesel.

When I got back to it I drained out the diesel and using dry compressed air I blew out the tank from both directions.

This was followed with a fill up with straight gas which was then drained and the tank blown out from both directions with dry high pressure air.

A new petcock was installed and the tank was topped off 93 octane non-ethanol with a 50:1 mix using Stihl HP Ultra.

After tickling the carb and putting on the choke it started after a couple of revolutions of the pedals while holding the starting lever.

The Kroil left in the cylinder produced a nice fog so that the bugs in the shop were persuaded to leave.

After riding it around the yard a little I took it out on the road for a few miles.

It ran very well and when I brought it back into the shop I set the idle to about 1,350 using the GTC TA100 Smartach.

Since it was warm I drained what little ATF was in it and replaced it with about 170ccs of fresh type F.

I was disappointed that there were a significant number of “shinnys” in what little ATF was in it.

I took the muffler off, disassembled and completely cleaned it and replaced it.

Depressing the horn button killed the engine so I tracked down that the horn ground had come out of its connection and was shorting out against the frame. Cleaning both terminals and applying a coat of dielectric silicone compound fixed that.

The next ride was about eight miles to continue to check it out and things were working well.

I again drained and refilled the ATF fluid and it was MUCH cleaner with only a faint trace of “shinnys”.

Satisfied with its starting and running I began cleaning and detailing it.

With it on the center stand while standing on the left side I bring the left pedal to its highest position. I turn on the fuel, depress the choke, tickle the carb for a few seconds, and while holding the starting lever give the left pedal a swift downward kick.

That routine rewards me with a start and after letting it run with a little throttle a minute or so I take off the choke and head out.

An 11 mile ride pretty much finished checking it out.

I’m well pleased with how it starts and runs and also very pleased with how it looks after a clean-up and detail.

I've got about $65 in it with the biggest expense being the CNC side cover bolts.

The original ones are somewhere in my friend's shop and the "bargain" ones I bought pulled apart with only a very light finger / thumb torque.

Two questions for all you Puch folks.

1.) I know that Puch sold out to Hero Motors several years after this bike as made (02/1978) so the Lemmi stickers are a puzzle to me. One moped parts dealer believes they were added by a previous owner.

2.) Under the 2 HP decal it appears like something else was there and has been removed.

Thanks in advance for any info.


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