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-   -   For the love of English 3 speeds... (https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=623699)

1989Pre 11-09-23 05:23 AM

My newest acquisition, a '65 Hercules, was abandoned. It needs a new rear tire and tube, and some tuning of the shifter/cable, but after that, it will be offered for sale as a pair with a ladies '55 Elswick. The bars are narrower (49cm) on the Hercules than they are on my Rudge Sports. Maybe the bike is a juvenile model.
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...852ef2b66f.jpg
The fan is two years newer than the bike.

dedhed 11-09-23 06:43 AM


Originally Posted by SirMike1983 (Post 23064949)
The original version of the S5 hub works fine. The problem points to watch are the original, plastic shifters and the original thin metal bell crank. If you get one with the improved bell crank and pushrod, that's a good start. An improved shifter set up would be a friction shifter non-drive and a 3-speed thumb shifter on the drive side. The original S5 is a little trickier to work on than the 3-speed AW, but it's not overly difficult either..

I had some replacements 3D printed

https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...9f5cf18235.jpg

gna 11-09-23 12:16 PM


Originally Posted by adventurepdx (Post 23065403)
Good to know. But I had that Collegiate over 15 years ago, and doubt I'd seek another bike like that.

I had a 5 speed collegiate as a kid. Schwinn switched to Shimano in the mid '70s, so my bike had the GT120. Worked flawlessly.

tcs 11-09-23 01:23 PM

Clocking in at the Sturmey-Archer factory in 1980: 6-minute film.

https://www.macearchive.org/films/ra...3srenG6fT1UhdY

Cyclespanner 11-09-23 02:21 PM

Hi tcs.
Thanks for the link to the video.

It fairly highlights conditions in a typical component factory of the time.
Frustrated workers on piece work, trying their best operating antiquated and worn out machinery.
I'm amazed the management allowed the film company onto the shop floor.

It's much the same now at the Brooks saddle factory; an outfit sadly reduced in size, getting by with antediluvian equipment, trading as a premium equipment supplier, portraying their products being made by craftsmen and women, which tells the lie of under investment.
From what I can see, it won't be long before they go to the wall too.
Grab 'em while you can.

Just finished reading a fascinating book published in 1975, 'The Story of the Raleigh Cycle', by Gregory Houston Bowen.
As the title implies it gives a (rosy) commentary of the companies development up to their 'hay-day' of the mid 70's.

The last chapters cover the authors tour of 'a thriving' factory, describing manufacturing practices at that time.
An example is Raleigh's chroming methods, which was a 4 part process, which confirms why their brightwork stands the test of time. Also their paint processes, including the 'mystical' 'Bonderising' rust prevention undercoat.

Of paramount interest to you in Canada and USA is a thorough description of how Raleigh established themselves there; alluding to what was done where and when.
Also describes the reasons for selling the 'Shop' brands and marketing of the 'lesser' marques, such as Philips and Hercules etc.

This is as near as the horses mouth as you're likely to get and certainly clears up many of the myths prevalent on this excellent and enthusiastic forum.

As I mentioned, the book gives a very positive take on what was after all, the worlds largest cycle manufacturer, with 'a bright future ahead'.
In retrospect; true irony.

Well worth hunting down a copy..

SirMike1983 11-16-23 09:39 AM

Cleaned and refurbished this 1957 Schwinn Traveler 3 speed recently. It's a nice companion to the 1959 Traveler I rebuilt back in the summer. I might get a shakedown ride or two on it, but serious riding probably waits until next season.

https://blogger.googleusercontent.co...104_201956.jpg

https://blogger.googleusercontent.co...104_202027.jpg

https://blogger.googleusercontent.co...104_202038.jpg

thumpism 11-16-23 06:23 PM

Well, the hub is English. $30 DaHon in TN.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...97071844508104

https://scontent.fric1-1.fna.fbcdn.n...ZA&oe=655AECD5

oldbikeguy62 11-17-23 01:00 AM

I just bought one also. What are you going to do with it.

tcs 11-17-23 08:42 AM


Originally Posted by thumpism (Post 23074698)
$30 DaHon

The weight is unfortunate, but even after 40 years, the folded size is competitive. Alloy rims, upgraded pedals, brakes. Fresh lubrication in the AW. Here we are in Old Town Crumbnik, Lower Slobovia:

https://cimg2.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...c956c58a89.png

The desirable models are the ones with stainless steel frames. These SS ones even have some collector value.

thumpism 11-19-23 05:09 PM

$20 23" '72 in GA.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...60205213200432

https://scontent.fric1-1.fna.fbcdn.n...9g&oe=656011B2

Small cog 11-22-23 12:04 AM

A new member here from the UK who has joined the forum just for this thread, although my cycling interests do extend beyond 3 speeds I spend far too much time thinking about and working on them, I even ride them on a regular basis including along the C & O canal while on holiday in the US earlier this year, no photos yet until I have made 10 posts apparently so I will have to think of something to say without them for now.

Cyclespanner 11-22-23 02:31 AM

Welcome 'Small cog'.

You are entering a world of genteel cyclists, happily sharing a common experience.
I'm from Yorkshire, yet find this thread relevant to my personal views and interests.
I haven't found a comparable UK site with this level of 3-speed enthusiasm, though our US friends have some odd perspectives on 'Blighty' ways of living and history, one can sympathise and forgive them the error of their ways.

Hope your involvement here is just as rewarding as mine has been.

Small cog 11-22-23 08:19 AM


Originally Posted by Cyclespanner (Post 23079343)
Welcome 'Small cog'.

You are entering a world of genteel cyclists, happily sharing a common experience.
I'm from Yorkshire, yet find this thread relevant to my personal views and interests.
I haven't found a comparable UK site with this level of 3-speed enthusiasm, though our US friends have some odd perspectives on 'Blighty' ways of living and history, one can sympathise and forgive them the error of their ways.

Hope your involvement here is just as rewarding as mine has been.

Thanks for the welcome, genteel would describe my riding style, I have never been a fast rider even when younger and with the low gearing I prefer now speed is out of the question, my user name unintentionally reflects the size of the chainrings on my bikes most of which are 34 or 36 tooth.

Pompiere 11-22-23 08:47 AM


Originally Posted by 1989Pre (Post 23066196)
My newest acquisition, a '65 Hercules, was abandoned. It needs a new rear tire and tube, and some tuning of the shifter/cable, but after that, it will be offered for sale as a pair with a ladies '55 Elswick. The bars are narrower (49cm) on the Hercules than they are on my Rudge Sports. Maybe the bike is a juvenile model.
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...852ef2b66f.jpg
The fan is two years newer than the bike.

I was looking through some old pictures and this bike caught my eye. Yours is a much nicer version of the bike my dad owned. He bought it years ago at a yard sale and rode it regularly until he had a stroke and had trouble swinging his leg over. Now that he is gone, I will take it out for an occasional leisurely ride around the block in his memory.

https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...74f10e5fff.jpg

Cyclespanner 11-22-23 10:02 AM

Just popped up on UK ebay, 3 veteran English 3 speeds making my heart ache.
Not expensive either.£395 each (open to offers) All in working order.
A Sunbeam and 2 Rudge's. Pedigree patina, the Sunbeam comes with it's original tool bag and tools and even has the original gold lining.

https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...ffbbc2f8e7.jpg
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...960ec452a0.jpg
https://cimg7.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...91eff3b6b4.jpg

markk900 11-22-23 10:12 AM

That sunbeam has quite the interesting cantilever brake system….

Cyclespanner 11-22-23 10:15 AM

https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...764016053b.jpg

Originally Posted by markk900 (Post 23079542)
That sunbeam has quite the interesting cantilever brake system….

Apparently 'Resilion' cantilever.
Notice the length of the blocks!

Small cog 11-22-23 10:47 AM

I did upload a photo of my Raleigh Lenton restomod before I found out I could not post it, if anyone wants a preview they can apparently see it by going into my profile and looking around but I am not sure how that works.

SirMike1983 11-22-23 11:56 AM

Those Sunbeams are killer. Nice pair of bikes for someone.

cjefferds 11-22-23 01:13 PM

Here is a nice example (my biased opinion) of a 1950s Raleigh “Sports Light Roadster” model 22. Approximate vintage is 1955-1957 based on the excellent visual identification chart available
https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...404ff714a.jpeg
on the headbadge site. The model name variation is also lifted from this chart but can’t independently confirm. Alas, this one has a single speed SA freewheel rather than 3 speed.

cjefferds 11-22-23 01:39 PM

And here is my 3 speed contribution. 1969.
https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...ba6cca5a4.jpeg

Cyclespanner 11-22-23 03:13 PM


Originally Posted by cjefferds (Post 23079699)
Here is a nice example (my biased opinion) of a 1950s Raleigh “Sports Light Roadster” model 22. Approximate vintage is 1955-1957 based on the excellent visual identification chart available
https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...404ff714a.jpeg
on the headbadge site. The model name variation is also lifted from this chart but can’t independently confirm. Alas, this one has a single speed SA freewheel rather than 3 speed.

''based on the excellent visual identification chart available''
Eh, what? where?

tcs 11-22-23 03:23 PM

A "Golden Sunbeam" rang a long unused bell. Yeah, desirable bike. Lotsa info on the web I won't regurgitate here.

cjefferds 11-22-23 03:26 PM


Originally Posted by Cyclespanner (Post 23079806)
''based on the excellent visual identification chart available''
Eh, what? where?

https://www.kurtkaminer.com/TH_ralsport_visID.html

1989Pre 11-22-23 04:33 PM

Pompiere, thanks for sharing that with us. I'm glad you still have and ride it.

gna 11-23-23 10:24 AM


Originally Posted by cjefferds (Post 23079821)

That's our good friend cudak888 's site. Has some helpful serial number info and an excellent catalog collection.

Cyclespanner 11-23-23 10:32 AM

Again, from UK ebay, a Dawn Tourist; ex shop display with minimal use.
£3,500 GULP!
https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...be5ebb3aaf.jpg
https://cimg3.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...576cd0da91.jpg

gna 11-23-23 10:39 AM


Originally Posted by Cyclespanner (Post 23079534)
Just popped up on UK ebay, 3 veteran English 3 speeds making my heart ache.
Not expensive either.£395 each (open to offers) All in working order.
A Sunbeam and 2 Rudge's. Pedigree patina, the Sunbeam comes with it's original tool bag and tools and even has the original gold lining.

The seatposts and saddle mounting are unusual, especially the first one...

John D 11-23-23 12:01 PM


Originally Posted by Cyclespanner (Post 23080449)
Again, from UK ebay, a Dawn Tourist; ex shop display with minimal use.
£3,500 GULP!
https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...be5ebb3aaf.jpg
https://cimg3.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...576cd0da91.jpg

And with a Terry tennis racket clip on the fork!

Cyclespanner 11-23-23 12:17 PM

If my posting of 'interesting' 3 speeds appearing on UK ebay is wanted, I'm happy to bring them to you from the real 'Land of the 3 speeds'.
Hot linking UK ebay items doesn't work but I can copy plum examples which may be of interest.
If this is useful and you want more, please let me know.


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