General 5 Star rim interchangeability

If you are here, hopefully you already know that a General 5 Star moped was made in Taiwan. Since most all the main brands of mopeds from the 70's were made in Europe, that should tell you something about buying and rebuilding a Taiwanese bike--they are unique--not bad, just not easy to fix or rebuild certain things compared with the Euro brands.

For example, the General 5 Star ST with the Sachs engine has special rims and hubs. Nothing like them on any bike I own and have studied. The forks and swing arm require a bolt instead of a stud, so the hub has to accept a bolt sliding through from side-to-side. The Euro bikes with loose bearings have studs and bearing cups so no way to use a bolt unless you convert the rims to sealed bearings. Generals had sealed bearings, so that's a clue to retrofits--but beware that the tabs that hold the brake plates on the forks and swing arm won't just allow you to bolt up other wheels without modification. The tab holding the brake plate on the fork is offset--not centered like other brake plates, so modification can work if you use a Puch rim, for example, but re-use the General Brake plate. It will fit.

The rear wheel and brake plate on a General with the Sachs engine also has a special part that fits between the brake plate and the swing arm to hold the brake plate still. A rear rim and brake plate from a more typical Sachs bike won't fit with the General part/spacer between the brake plate and the swing arm. Might require welding or some crazy hack to get it to work--hasn't happened for me so far.

I won't buy another General with a Sachs unless it has straight wheels. Period. Replacement is way too difficult for a Sachs-powered bike to make the effort worthwhile.