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

SirMike1983 07-28-18 09:30 AM


Originally Posted by RobbieTunes (Post 20474295)
I am a complete newb when it comes to an old 3-speed, but I've picked up a 1959 Raleigh Sports, and I've decided to give maybe 100 hours to it.

It's burgundy with white trim on the fenders, has a dyno front hub and a headlight and tail light. Grips, pedals, chain, wiring, etc are all original. I'm sure the tires/tubes are not.

My plan is a painstaking tear-down, clean, and reassemble without touchup or replacement of items...UNLESS

1-Will it hurt the bike's "cache" if I run new wires? The older ones, to be frank, look a little brittle. It's preferable to use the dyno (since it's working) but the original off-white wiring (maybe it was white) looks like, well, 59 years old. On the same topic, I'd like to try a regulator and LED bulb replacement. Bad or not?

2-I"m a bit worried about the grips. They're old, and worn shiny and hard. A proper treatment of the handlebars, etc would be to remove them, but surely this may cause damage. How "bad" is it to replace them? I'm a Schwinn "root beer" grip fan, and would love to use some of those.

3-Galvanized spokes are in good shape, but the bike will clean up pretty well, and stainless would look so good. Is this a bad thing?

4-The original B66 is on it. Pretty stiff, and a couple tears near the front bolt. No doubt I can Proof it and make it more flexible, but worries about it's ability to be oiled and then ridden remain. Of course, I can get a new B66 but this is a '59 and I'd prefer an rhm re-cover if anything, but would prefer not to have to go that route if possible. Thoughts?

I know there are purists here, and I rarely go that route. On this bike, though, I'd kind of like to stay more "true" than all-day functional. My plan is to restore it, get some tweed, and go have a fun day somewhere, somehow.

Any decent condition Raleigh made before the early 1960s is a higher cachet Raleigh because it pre-dates the Tube Investments consolidation and will exhibit the older construction methods before production economies cheapened the bikes over the course of the 1960s. The Early 1960s bikes are "transitional" in the sense they exhibit some older methods and some newer. The more "common" bikes are mid-1960s and later.

Original wiring should be left in place unless it's broken/not working. If you choose to remove it, save it somewhere as an original part. Swapping to LED won't hurt anything and will make the bike safer in darker conditions. Save the old bulb. Adding a regulator is fine as long as your work is reversible to original condition - avoid permanent modifications.

Original grips should be left in place unless broken or totally worn out/useless. Removing original grips is a gamble because some of them will not come off intact (they break up or split at the mouth usually). If the grips are already loose and easy to remove, then go with whatever grips you want but save the originals. If the originals are locked in place, I suggest leaving them unless they're totally cooked.

If the original galvanized spokes are in good shape, leave them in place. If they're unsafe and rusted-out, then there's no choice but to remove them. But if they're alright, leave the wheels original and build a separate, second set of wheels and use the second set. Set the originals aside in a safe place if you do that.

If the original B66 is torn at the nose rivets, then replace with a new B66 as a rider saddle. Save the original.

This is how I would do it at least.

BigChief 07-28-18 09:56 AM


Originally Posted by Cute Boy Horse (Post 20474267)
Police model would have an X-frame (until they stopped doing those), never a "girls" bike. That headlight looks crazy.



I've never, ever seen curved rod brake block holders, on any age of bike or in any condition. I thought you'd found something aftermarket. Pity.

I was surprised to see the straight Fibrax pads when they came. I thought they would be curved like the originals. I figured that you were expected to let them wear into a curve in time. I diddn't try to shape them. I mounted them on the bike and found them to be wildly inefficient. I was wrong about the holders. The original holders are straight. It's the Kool Stop pads that have a curved top surface.

Johno59 07-28-18 10:22 AM


Originally Posted by RobbieTunes (Post 20474295)
I am a complete newb when it comes to an old 3-speed, but I've picked up a 1959 Raleigh Sports, and I've decided to give maybe 100 hours to it.

It's burgundy with white trim on the fenders, has a dyno front hub and a headlight and tail light. Grips, pedals, chain, wiring, etc are all original. I'm sure the tires/tubes are not.

My plan is a painstaking tear-down, clean, and reassemble without touchup or replacement of items...UNLESS

1-Will it hurt the bike's "cache" if I run new wires? The older ones, to be frank, look a little brittle. It's preferable to use the dyno (since it's working) but the original off-white wiring (maybe it was white) looks like, well, 59 years old. On the same topic, I'd like to try a regulator and LED bulb replacement. Bad or not?

2-I"m a bit worried about the grips. They're old, and worn shiny and hard. A proper treatment of the handlebars, etc would be to remove them, but surely this may cause damage. How "bad" is it to replace them? I'm a Schwinn "root beer" grip fan, and would love to use some of those.

3-Galvanized spokes are in good shape, but the bike will clean up pretty well, and stainless would look so good. Is this a bad thing?

4-The original B66 is on it. Pretty stiff, and a couple tears near the front bolt. No doubt I can Proof it and make it more flexible, but worries about it's ability to be oiled and then ridden remain. Of course, I can get a new B66 but this is a '59 and I'd prefer an rhm re-cover if anything, but would prefer not to have to go that route if possible. Thoughts?

I know there are purists here, and I rarely go that route. On this bike, though, I'd kind of like to stay more "true" than all-day functional. My plan is to restore it, get some tweed, and go have a fun day somewhere, somehow.

Stainless steel rims and spokes were an option for Raleigh Sports long before 1959. You can buy original Raleigh /Dunlop SS rims 20 years older. Wiring is wiring, it wasn't meant to last 50 years and is unlikely to be original. The loom was made by Lucas and they were always appalling.
The Brooks seat has nothing to do with Raleigh - it's just as likely to have a Wrights on it.

Brooks refuse to provide new leather for their seats at any price, so get a new one or refurb- but the rails and springs do break and Brooks still sell those bits - just not the most perishable part - the leather. Go figure.
IMHO it's a bomb-proof bicycle that was meant to be ridden hard in all weather's over any terrain, not
some exotic trinket meant for strutting around like a peacock.
Git Som!

Lawrence_S 07-28-18 10:34 AM


Originally Posted by Cute Boy Horse (Post 20474267)
Police model would have an X-frame (until they stopped doing those), never a "girls" bike. That headlight looks crazy...

Thanks CBH. The headlamp is Raleigh branded. It's a monster, isn't it? ;)

https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...81db7f6398.jpg

Cute Boy Horse 07-28-18 10:50 AM

Now you've got me curious, which Dynohub is that? Might be one of the earlier 12 volts?

clubman 07-28-18 11:44 AM


Originally Posted by RobbieTunes (Post 20474295)
I've decided to give maybe 100 hours to it.

...Of course, I can get a new B66 but this is a '59 and I'd prefer an rhm re-cover if anything, but would prefer not to have to go that route if possible. Thoughts?

Interesting way to look at a bike restoration by allocating hours to it. I should try that.

Unless the B66 is horrible looking, try to just ride it. The comfort is mostly built into the springs so softening the leather will just reduce it's longevity.

Before pics? :)

browngw 07-28-18 05:48 PM


Originally Posted by RobbieTunes (Post 20474295)
I am a complete newb when it comes to an old 3-speed, but I've picked up a 1959 Raleigh Sports, and I've decided to give maybe 100 hours to it.

It's burgundy with white trim on the fenders, has a dyno front hub and a headlight and tail light. Grips, pedals, chain, wiring, etc are all original. I'm sure the tires/tubes are not.

My plan is a painstaking tear-down, clean, and reassemble without touchup or replacement of items...UNLESS

1-Will it hurt the bike's "cache" if I run new wires? The older ones, to be frank, look a little brittle. It's preferable to use the dyno (since it's working) but the original off-white wiring (maybe it was white) looks like, well, 59 years old. On the same topic, I'd like to try a regulator and LED bulb replacement. Bad or not?

2-I"m a bit worried about the grips. They're old, and worn shiny and hard. A proper treatment of the handlebars, etc would be to remove them, but surely this may cause damage. How "bad" is it to replace them? I'm a Schwinn "root beer" grip fan, and would love to use some of those.

3-Galvanized spokes are in good shape, but the bike will clean up pretty well, and stainless would look so good. Is this a bad thing?

4-The original B66 is on it. Pretty stiff, and a couple tears near the front bolt. No doubt I can Proof it and make it more flexible, but worries about it's ability to be oiled and then ridden remain. Of course, I can get a new B66 but this is a '59 and I'd prefer an rhm re-cover if anything, but would prefer not to have to go that route if possible. Thoughts?

I know there are purists here, and I rarely go that route. On this bike, though, I'd kind of like to stay more "true" than all-day functional. My plan is to restore it, get some tweed, and go have a fun day somewhere, somehow.

I might as well throw in my two cents worth as I have a 1972 Root Beer Raleigh Sports waiting for a teardown and refurbish as well. Considering the time and love that goes into a project like this, I want to be pleased with the appearance and reliability of the final product. Ratty old wiring and cables and chains can be changed easily and enhance the look of the bike. Same with tires, grips and saddles if required. I know some keep the old parts as I once did, but I sold five vintage bikes last month and had saved some of the original parts and offered them to the buyers.(drop bars, pedals cables etc.) No one wanted them. I have two older Brooks saddles in the fleet but would not use one with a rivet tear for safety's sake. The galvanized spokes can be carefully cleaned with fine scotchbrite and waxed. Unless they are rusted they are likely fine. When upgrades or accessories are desired I try to keep it "period correct". Always try to save original paint and decals where possible. I must admit that it would be more like 150-200 for a complete project Raleigh that I intended to keep for myself. Have fun with it and we hope to see all your trials and tribulations.

BigChief 07-28-18 08:20 PM

Each project bike brings it's own questions of how to handle the balance between preservation, restoration and modification. They all have different limitations and possibilities. At this point, I would lean heavily on the preservation side for Pre TI Raleighs (1960) because they are becoming more rare and represent a high point for the design. About grips, original 1950s grips on English roadsters are very rare. Most every 50s roadster you find will have black Hunt Wilde aftermarket grips. Originals would be highly prized by someone. I have first hand experience here! Looking forward to seeing this bike.

Buellster 07-28-18 09:41 PM

Ross armstrong?
 
I imagine this is the thread to ask about this.
Does anyone know anything about the Brand Ross Armstrong?
this bike
https://portland.craigslist.org/mlt/bik/d/vintage-50s-armstrong-3-speed/6649940780.html
seems like a good deal.
Any guesses on size? I'm hoping it's at least 23" or so. If the rear wheel is 27" or so it should be near that right?

Buellster 07-28-18 11:45 PM

https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...f796d8c0a4.jpg
Pic assit (no drive side pic)

gster 07-29-18 04:10 AM


Originally Posted by Buellster (Post 20475482)

That looks to be a 21" frame w/ 26" wheels.
A smaller bike can be quite comfortable if you raise the seat and bars,'
English made, likely a Raleigh sub brand.
https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...38c4aeb638.jpg

gster 07-29-18 04:18 AM

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...9178a4c64f.jpg

Doohickie 07-29-18 07:39 AM


Originally Posted by gster (Post 20475577)
A smaller bike can be quite comfortable if you raise the seat and bars,'

True. My 24" frame DL-1 was much better when I moved the seat up. A few pics from Friday's ride (about 20 miles)
https://cimg2.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...367f4dab6d.jpg

Grand opening of a new coffee shop

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...4226cb070d.jpg

Houston Street, downtown Fort Worth
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...1965c77f8a.jpg

This sculpture recreates the final picture of the Hole in the Wall Gang before Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kit left for Bolivia. (The real picture was taken here in Fort Worth)

scale 07-29-18 07:40 AM

Raleigh Twenty Fenders
 
Are the cheap 20" fenders on epay workable on a Raleigh Twenty? Has anyone tried them? I have a twenty that needs fenders and i am thinking these will fit nicely. It is hard to find 20 inch fenders. These run about $20 per set so they cant be great but really.....its a muguard/fender.

gster 07-29-18 08:15 AM


Originally Posted by Doohickie (Post 20475754)
True. My 24" frame DL-1 was much better when I moved the seat up. A few pics from Friday's ride (about 20 miles)
https://cimg2.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...367f4dab6d.jpg

Grand opening of a new coffee shop

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...4226cb070d.jpg

Houston Street, downtown Fort Worth
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...1965c77f8a.jpg

This sculpture recreates the final picture of the Hole in the Wall Gang before Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kit left for Bolivia. (The real picture was taken here in Fort Worth)

Your bike is tall to start with!
Here's a 21" Hercules that I worked on a couple of years ago with a high seat and bars.
A good city bike and curb jumper.....
https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...2a43a93806.jpg

Buellster 07-29-18 08:59 AM


Originally Posted by gster (Post 20475577)
That looks to be a 21" frame w/ 26" wheels.
A smaller bike can be quite comfortable if you raise the seat and bars,'
English made, likely a Raleigh sub brand.
https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...38c4aeb638.jpg

that's beautiful! I'd love to fix this one up and have something unique, but I'm 6' 2".
I know the seat and bars could be moved but I fear I'd be pushing it. If its within reason I dont mind putting a tall stem and jacking the seat post up though.

Buellster 07-29-18 09:43 AM

I'll be picking up one of these I'm posting about in the next few days and then I'll be posting about repairs and such like this thread is meant for. I dont mean to spam all your lovely posts with appraisals, but I dont want to get something I regret since I only have room for one more bike so its gotta be a good one. This will be my last appraisal post as I'm down to these 3.
Anyway...
First I found an AMF Hercules 3 speed with dyno lights and tail light. Its 23" according to seller and between this and the Armstrong posted above I'd lean towards the armstrong. With only an inch of difference I just like the character of the Armstrong more. That one inch could be a big a difference though.
I also found a bike on the taller end. It is a swedish 3 speed and I frankly dont like the sound of that given the price and rarity of swedish bottom brackets and quills. I know crescent has a bad reputation in the road biking community for being heavy, but that's not the worst thing for a 3 speed.
seller says its a 25" frame, which may even be too tall for me.
what was the reputation of crescent for 3 speeds? He only wants 35 dollars and if it would be a good starter bike I'd be happy to ride it around, but I fear is be biting off a lot to chew.
https://cimg7.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...28b335371c.jpg

23\" AMF
https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...9019db3fa3.jpg

MCB Crescent 3 speed

BigChief 07-29-18 10:03 AM

I'm 6' tall and I made a 21" frame work for me by using a Sunlite Touring stem. It's a good 3 1/2" longer than the Raleigh stem and is available in 22.2mm to fit the Raleigh fork. It also has a longer neck than the Raleigh stem which makes up for the loss of reach you get from raising the bars higher. It does have a 1" clamp so you need a 1/32" or so shim to hold the 15/16" Raleigh handle bars. And you need to make all new custom length cables. Here's mine.

https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...d07e58d9ea.jpg

Buellster 07-29-18 10:08 AM


Originally Posted by BigChief (Post 20475940)
I'm 6' tall and I made a 21" frame work for me by using a Sunlite Touring stem. It's a good 3 1/2" longer than the Raleigh stem and is available in 22.2mm to fit the Raleigh fork. It also has a longer neck than the Raleigh stem which makes up for the loss of reach you get from raising the bars higher. It does have a 1" clamp so you need a 1/32" or so shim to hold the 15/16" Raleigh handle bars. And you need to make all new custom length cables. Here's mine.

https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...d07e58d9ea.jpg

good to know!
as it stands I'm looking to check out and likley get the Armstrong tommrow. I just found the two above and wanted to ask about them just to have some comparison points.
did you ever have any luck with your dyno hub?

Buellster 07-29-18 10:17 AM

Ouch... Armstrong sold.
looks like its between the herc and the crescent

BigChief 07-29-18 10:20 AM

I sent away for the LED bulbs and the xgen2 regulator. Wow, expensive. At least I'm in love with the bike. Everything in the circuitry is working and with solid continuity. Now I can tell that the switch is left/on middle and right/off. The 3rd position must be for the battery pack option they offered back then. One last bug to fix. The plastic lens on the tail light won't thread securely into the shell. The threads don't look too bad. Can plastic shrink? For whatever reason it won't hold. It had a bit of falling off electrical tape on it. Lucky it diddn't get lost. So now I need to devise some method of securing the lens onto the shell.

https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...cf17001144.jpg

Buellster 07-29-18 10:34 AM


Originally Posted by BigChief (Post 20475957)
I sent away for the LED bulbs and the xgen2 regulator. Wow, expensive. At least I'm in love with the bike. Everything in the circuitry is working and with solid continuity. Now I can tell that the switch is left/on middle and right/off. The 3rd position must be for the battery pack option they offered back then. One last bug to fix. The plastic lens on the tail light won't thread securely into the shell. The threads don't look too bad. Can plastic shrink? For whatever reason it won't hold. It had a bit of falling off electrical tape on it. Lucky it diddn't get lost. So now I need to devise some method of securing the lens onto the shell.

https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...cf17001144.jpg

yeah they aren't cheap but from what everyone says it's quite worth it.
as for the lens a little trick I've used on plastic covers is to wrap electrical tape around the ridges. The tape compresses and fills the threads while pushing up on the raised points. A few layers, maybe even just one, is sometimes enough to get the threads to work with each other. Sometimes it stays in good as gold, but it's good to check on it because if it's more of a compression fit than a threaded one itll pop off on bumps.
also the electrical tape isn't conductive so it wont burn up.

Lawrence_S 07-29-18 12:44 PM


Originally Posted by Cute Boy Horse (Post 20474504)
Now you've got me curious, which Dynohub is that? Might be one of the earlier 12 volts?

I'm sniping these photos from the Craigslist ad. Unfortunately, I'm the last person that would know about such esoteric things, being such a Noob. However the seller said in his ad the bike was fitted with front and rear drum brakes and I assumed he had it wrong and they were rod brakes, but I'm not seeing any brake stirrups. Could the headlamp have been totally battery powered at some point? He says the headlamp works. Such a thing as dynamo hub with drums? So much to learn...

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...57822b892a.jpg

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...b0b6d93ddd.jpg

gster 07-29-18 01:30 PM


Originally Posted by Buellster (Post 20475953)
Ouch... Armstrong sold.
looks like its between the herc and the crescent

I'd opt for the Hercules.
I had a Crescent through here a couple of years ago and didn't care for
the bottom bracket. It also had a bent frame so that project was abandoned.
https://threespeedmania.wordpress.co...another-bitsa/
At 6'2" I think you should hold out for a taller bike.
They're out there, you just have to find one.

Buellster 07-29-18 01:32 PM


Originally Posted by gster (Post 20476216)
I'd opt for the Hercules.
I had a Crescent through here a couple of years ago and didn't care for
the bottom bracket. It also had a bent frame so that project was abandoned.
https://threespeedmania.wordpress.co...another-bitsa/
At 6'2" I think you should hold out for a taller bike.
They're out there, you just have to find one.

thanks!
bottom bracket is my biggest concern with the Crescent.
I think a 24" is just right. So i may be able to swing the 23". But its likley a good idea to hold out...

BigChief 07-29-18 02:49 PM


Originally Posted by Buellster (Post 20476219)
thanks!
bottom bracket is my biggest concern with the Crescent.
I think a 24" is just right. So i may be able to swing the 23". But its likley a good idea to hold out...

I think at 6'2" a 23" Sports would have enough adjustment in the standard seat post and handlebar stem to fit you. With the stem, you can raise it until the expander is just below the threaded section of the fork tube. These fork tubes don't have a keyway cut into them so they are quite strong. The seat post is even less fussy, plenty of adjustment there. There's plenty of 23" roadsters out there and you can spot them in the ad photo easily.

ascherer 07-29-18 04:20 PM


Originally Posted by DQRider (Post 20471737)
It was a beautiful day down by the Saint Paul waterfront.

https://i.imgur.com/dm2TgPN.png

I rode my Super Course Sturmey-Archer conversion about 40 miles through the parks along the river. This bike draws a lot of attention whenever I stop to photograph it. Kind of like dating a super-model. :p

.

Another admirer. I love mt Sports, but I would like to make me one of these from a Super Course or Gran(d) Sport(s) or even a Fuji S10 or S12.

Cute Boy Horse 07-29-18 04:51 PM


Originally Posted by Lawrence_S (Post 20476143)
I'm sniping these photos from the Craigslist ad. Unfortunately, I'm the last person that would know about such esoteric things, being such a Noob. However the seller said in his ad the bike was fitted with front and rear drum brakes and I assumed he had it wrong and they were rod brakes, but I'm not seeing any brake stirrups. Could the headlamp have been totally battery powered at some point? He says the headlamp works. Such a thing as dynamo hub with drums? So much to learn...

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...57822b892a.jpg

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...b0b6d93ddd.jpg

Ahaha I should've spotted that was a drum brake! Saw the handlebar rods, didn't bother to follow my eyes down.

I know Raleigh had some headlights with bottle dynamos built in, early on, as a complete unit. I think this might be one of those, but I've never seen one before. It'd explain the looks.

BigChief 07-29-18 07:16 PM

Looks like this bike may have a KB hub. I'd love to have one of those to tinker with. Here's a shot of the 1934 catalog.

https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...087b1394cd.jpg

Lawrence_S 07-30-18 04:45 AM


Originally Posted by BigChief (Post 20476831)
Looks like this bike may have a KB hub. I'd love to have one of those to tinker with...

It can be yours, BigChief! It's for sale on the Charleston Craigslist (not my ad, not my bike.) See my link to the sale in the initial post about this bike. Very pricey though. I've asked the seller for the approx. age, but he's not responded.


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