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Antique Brandenburg Bicycle. 1910s? 1920s? 1930s?

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Antique Brandenburg Bicycle. 1910s? 1920s? 1930s?

Old 10-28-19, 05:47 AM
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JoshCattermole9
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Antique Brandenburg Bicycle. 1910s? 1920s? 1930s?

Hello,

Thank you for letting me on the forum. I am a young bike enthusiast who loves the really old stuff. I saw a bike for sale online which looks really old. It has one frontal spoon brake. It has ''Brandenburg'' on one of the crossbars. Has anyone heard of this company? Is it possibly German from between the wars? I really wish I could post pictures, but since I am a new member I am not allowed to post pictures, which is a shame.

Sorry that there are no pictures, but maybe someone will have heard of the name of this company. Cheers.
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Old 10-28-19, 05:58 AM
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I know nothing of it, but will watch and learn.

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Old 10-28-19, 06:16 AM
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Thanks. Hopefully some answers come out of this (or I manage to get 10 posts so I can then post pics or a URL!).
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Old 10-28-19, 07:22 AM
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Link to the OP's photo album: https://www.bikeforums.net/g/album/15648185

Given that it's German, it probably has a Fichtel & Sachs rear hub. If so, these do have date code stamps on them. From 1920-1957 they used a two number, open format code on the shell. However, don't confuse a '36' for a year, as this could also represent the spoke count. 1958+ there was a letter stamped on the shell or brake brake. Pre-1920, numbers were stamped on the axle and may require hub disassembly.
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Old 10-28-19, 08:09 AM
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Wow, that is cool. What are your plans for it?
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Old 10-28-19, 08:24 AM
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Man, that is a wife and all the kids rear rack.

Do post your restoration pictures, and amazing that it looks to be still intact, a missing part the older a bike gets is often instant restoration crisis.
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Old 10-30-19, 02:46 PM
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Cheers for your replys guys. I haven't actually bought the bike yet. But it's not cheap so I wanted to try and get some info on it before potentially buying it. The seller has yet to get back to me regarding possible markings on the rear hub. I'll keep you updated if she replies.
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Old 10-30-19, 03:22 PM
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Old 10-30-19, 03:34 PM
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Before dumping a ton of money into something like that, you really need to decide what you wish to do with it.

It would be a cool display bike as-is. Is that a new inner-tube? Perhaps keep the old tires, but basically do nothing but cleaning and lube.

The other option would be a full restoration. Nickel plating what needs plating. Rework the saddle. Etc.

Or, you could judiciously modernize certain aspects of the bike.
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Old 10-30-19, 03:59 PM
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I'd use it as a runner on a regular basis. I'm at university and bike home at the weekends (about 7 miles each way). But i'd keep the bike as is, but just make it so that it actually works without falling apart on me. I'm a strong believer in keeping things original to when they were made, so I wouldn't modify it.
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Old 10-30-19, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by JoshCattermole9 View Post
I'd use it as a runner on a regular basis. I'm at university and bike home at the weekends (about 7 miles each way). But i'd keep the bike as is, but just make it so that it actually works without falling apart on me. I'm a strong believer in keeping things original to when they were made, so I wouldn't modify it.


University student, or University staff?

I don't think you mentioned where you are at. Are you British?

This will work for you, but that wouldn't be my choice, depending on how many miles you expect.

You'll need either a new seat or to rebuild the old one. I'm not sure I'd trust the spokes, but new Stainless may look odd.

I assume it is 1-speed, which may or not work for your needs.

I realize the uniqueness of that bike, but for a commuter, I'd select one of the Nottingham bikes. The Raleigh and Robin Hood 3-speed bikes from the 1950's show up regularly around here. Not a lot of them, but regularly, and usually around $100 for a "fixer".

Of course, your needs and desires can be different.
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Old 10-30-19, 04:46 PM
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I'm a student in Britain (Leicester). I don't mind the seat. I have a 1948 Raleigh with the original seat and it does nothing worse that rub off on my trousers a bit. I don't actually think it has any gears, so would be a 1 speed. That might be good as it limits the speeds I can go on it. The 40s Raleigh was terrifying at 40mph downhill so I don't want a repeat of that. But the 40s one keeps giving me gear trouble, so a 1 spear might be a simple option.

Last edited by JoshCattermole9; 10-30-19 at 04:47 PM. Reason: forgot to add something
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Old 10-30-19, 04:58 PM
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Postwar GDR product, if I'm not mistaken. Late forties to early fifties would be my guess.
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Old 10-30-19, 05:17 PM
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I'm not so much into the "antique" bikes sort of thing- but that crank is interesting to me.
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Old 10-31-19, 12:27 AM
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Ugh. It's a very cool crusty old relic, but seven miles on that bike with that saddle sounds like sheer hell to me. If it's exactly the right size for you, maybe not too bad, but I'd immediately start wishing for some extra gears and nice vintage Brooks Professional in like-new condition. If there were any hills on the route, I'd want much better brakes, too.
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Old 10-31-19, 03:41 AM
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Looking at that saddle again, I thought it was one of the vintage big spring saddles, but it appears to be similar to a more modern Brooks or Ideale saddles.

Is it missing the tension part on the nose?

Show and Tell: Recovering a Brooks Saddle

@cdmurphy, a bunch of image links appear to be broken, but the images open up when one right-clicks on them and selects "open in a new window".

Extraordinary work. I can't remember if someone else had posted saddle making, or if this was it.
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Old 10-31-19, 04:29 PM
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I can’t help with any information, but since my last name is Brandenburg your post peaked my interest. Now I guess I need to look for one in the States.
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Old 10-31-19, 06:33 PM
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Thanks for your thoughts and advice guys. I'll probably pas on it it then, if it's potentially a post war bike. And yeh, might be hell to ride 7 miles on a regular basis. Cheers.
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Old 10-31-19, 06:37 PM
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I don't think I've taken apart a Sturmey Archer hub. I have taken apart other 3 speeds, as well as coaster brake hubs, and with some care, they're pretty straight forward.

I presume you can buy most of the Sturmey Archer parts you need, perhaps on E-Bay.

Other brands?
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Old 10-31-19, 06:43 PM
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Oh, as far as fast descents. There are a lot of factors including good roads tight corners, and cross traffic.

Good maintenance and truing of wheels will help.

I regularly hit 40 MPH on some descents. Fast, but not too bad.
50 MPH was mighty fast on my 1960's Colnago Super.
54 MPH is so far my max. And, pretty snappy. There is a world of difference on a little stiffer bike.
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Old 11-01-19, 04:11 AM
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There's a website on DDR bicycles - of course - and this bike does look to be a first series Brandenburg from the early fifties.

Here's another one:

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Old 11-01-19, 04:36 AM
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Oh wow. Yeah, that looks like a match. Looks really nice in that picture. Almost makes me tempted to get the one for sale. But I have such little space in my dad's shed, and I wanted to get a really early bike, like pre-1920. It's a lovely bike, but I'll have to pass simply due to lack of space. but cheers again for all the advice you guys have given me. It's really appreciated.
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