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

vintagebicycle 07-26-20 03:38 PM


Originally Posted by barnfind (Post 21604536)
  • Clean rims here are non existent unless the bike was never used. I've owned several of these bikes for over 40 years and never had one wear through the chrome on the rims or get rusty spots, even with high miles on them.
  • In 40 plus years I've also never run across a single bike with a leather saddle, either new or used. I've found a few new one's on shelves, but never found one on a bike. Back in the day, I don't even remember ever taking a bike out of the box with one with the exception of a few Peugeot PX10's. I bought a new Raleigh Super Course in 1977, it came with a padded Selle saddle with two rear springs, not the B17 that they advertised. I personally unpacked and assembled that bike myself, along with many others and none we saw had B17 saddles.
  • Original pumps are like hen's teeth here, basically only the Raleigh branded bikes got them, and only the deluxe model. Frame pumps were popular on road bikes, everyone HAD to have one, but not on three speeds, most didn't care.

Here's an example of what's in the trailer, this one came out of the trailer apart, it still needs cables, a shifter, some grips, and the chain installed. The rims are very pitted, they look okay from a distance but they're rough. They are straight and true though. The tires are old, maybe original but they hold air. The BB, HS, and rear hub are mint, I relubed the BB, HS, and front hub, I opened and checked the rear hub as well. I have good used cables, a good used shifter, used pedals, everything to make the bike perfectly servicable, it just won't be cosmetically perfect. A new set of rims, and new bars and the chrome situation is solved.

I'll likely go so far as making it ridable and either keep it as a family loaner or if something better comes along I'll list it but being so small it'll likely be here for a while. The last small frame like this sat on CL for sale for four years at $250 and it was also a good bit cleaner than this one overall. I finally let it go for $225 so I didn't have watch the new tires dry rot just sitting there. I had run it on Facebook too but it got no interest there at all after 6 months. It sold to the first guy who came to see it, he drove 6 hours to get it.

What I'm finding with the 'Apart bikes' is that he took each bike apart and gave every part a code, for example this one was 677, every part on the bike had a tag with that number. I've not found a matching chainguard and the calipers were also not marked for this bike.
There are three of these frames two are identical. This and one other have no model decal on them, just a Robin Hood headbadge and a coat of arms decal on the seat post. It may well still be here but it wasn't in the box with this bike's number and it wasn't in the barrel with the other Chainguards I found. I do have a black one though off an older bike but I likely just leave it off for now.
https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...d8684f8632.jpg

I have to agree, that bike doesn't look that bad to me, it just small. You gotta remember that these things are getting to be 50 or so years old and original rims in any sort of usable shape are rare, if not all gone. The last set I saw on eBay with nice chrome went for over $180. Spend that on a bike and you'll never get your money out of it.
The bottom line is a bike that presents as a clean, original bike is the most desirable. I for would likely shy away from a bike with a new wheelset or modern rims as well.
If the rims are still true, and the rust is just cosmetic, I'd clean the chrome the best you can and call it done. I haven't seen a perfect set of rims in more than 30 years now for one of these English three speeds, and I don't suppose that's going to change anytime soon. I have seen a few 36h rims listed on fleabay from Europe but that means going even further and having to change the hubs too.
I just sold a black 19.5" Hercules that was very similar to that bike, I went through it top to bottom, cleaned and polished everything and listed for $450 OBO on CL, the ad went up on Friday around 2pm, it was gone at 8pm. The buyer wanted it for his wife to ride, he said he'd been searching for a 'clean' one like that for a year. It was likely not as clean as your Robin Hood, and in my experience, Robin Hood is a better name than Hercules when it comes to being able to find a buyer.
That candy apple red they used was a real eye catcher too.

thumpism 07-26-20 09:08 PM

A couple of oldies out in the boonies, two for $50!. M23 Sports with a Brooks and just look at that top tube shifter on the Hercules!

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...12469379168609

https://scontent.fric1-1.fna.fbcdn.n...49&oe=5F447875

barnfind 07-27-20 01:09 AM

In digging through some of the parts and bikes from one of the recent clean outs I did I came across what had originally been sorted into the Raleigh Sports lot of bikes.
After looking closer I realized its marked Sprite on the downtube. What got it put in the 26" bike trailer was the fact that its got 1 3/8" wide tires, Dunlop rims, north road bars and an SA trigger shifter, and the fenders are not like most Sprite 27 fenders in that they're ridged and peaked like those on a Sports model.
The bike is complete minus the rear wheel, and the front wheel is likely not fixable either. The front tire is a Raleigh Record 27 x 1 3/8" black wall with twin reflective white stripes on the sides. The tread is the common block tread found on the Sports model.
The cranks are single speed Raleigh Heron style as on a Sports model, the headset and BB is the same as a Sports, its got a tubular crown fork, and is dark brown in color.
Chances are the bike won't go back together due to a dented down tube, it looks like the caliper came around and dented the dt pretty bad. The saddle is a Brooks mattress style. The frame has two brazed on pump pegs on the downtube as well, just like a sports.
I looked through all the old catalogs I've got and it likely has to be a 1971-72 model, it doesn't have an Anniversary headbadge, so 1970 is ruled out.
The decals on the frame are identical to a 1971 Sports I've got, but the paint is a darker brown than what was used on the Sports model.
The bike is half buried in the trailer right now, but I'll try and get it out for pics later this week.
My question is, did they build an internal geared hub Sprite in 27" or is this someone's creation from back in the day?
I've never seen this tire in 27" before, and I've never seen a Sprite 27 with ridged fenders like a Sports. I also found a red woman's model that other than the Dunlop wheels and 27x1 3/8" tires and AW hub, looks like a common Sprite 27 with flat top fenders. It too though has North Road style bars not the typical semi straight riser bars they usually come with.
That bike has bent frame, but two good wheels and a hub dated 1972. Both bikes have self adjusting brake levers.
The rear frame of both bikes measures 110mm, but that could well have been respaced.
I had always sort of looked at the Sprite 27 as basically a Grand Prix with upright bars but this is different, the lugs are like those of a Sports, not one of the lesser road bikes, the lugs are those long, square cut lugs you see on a Sports model. The frame is also heavier than that of a 70's Grand Prix of the same size. A GP also didn't have a tubular crown fork nor did it have the more extreme rake to the front end these two have. The rims are also spoked 40/32, I don't think any of the road bikes were built with anything but 36h rims? (Even if I were to try to fix this Sprite, I'd likely have a hard time finding new 27" rims to build in 40/32, I'd likely have to find another hub and use a more common 36h rim).
Something that I'm finding is that some of these bikes may have been sold overseas originally, the ladies Sprite had a receipt for a 'rattle in headset' repair from a bike shop in Brighton, East Sussex dated 1977. How it got here I have no idea. Another ladies Sports model had several packages of brake shoes in a saddle bag with price tags marked in not $. I suppose there's a chance a few of these are models or variations we never saw here in the states.

thumpism 07-27-20 09:35 AM

The Sprites I've seen have all been 27" wheeled and derailleur-shifted, not to say they might not have made some IG bikes over the years with that name. The non-peaked fenders also seems to be a Sprite thing, but I might not have noticed other variations when I've seen them. I also never measured this but would be curious to know the distance from axle slots to brake mounting holes on the front and the rear of the Sportses and Sprites; I suspect the Sprites measure greater for 27" clearance.

Narhay 07-27-20 09:48 AM

Close this loop. Before and after. 1969 Raleigh Superbe.

https://i.imgur.com/GjYF3B1.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/uqzqwlK.jpg

hdkct 07-27-20 11:47 AM

To file or not to file
 
My old Raleigh DL-1 rims are in reasonably good shape, but a couple of spokes are protruding far enough on the inside of the rim that they push through the rim tape and cut into the tubes. I am considering filing those spoke nubs down until they are smooth. I'm looking for opinions regarding this. Will I be causing any potential problems, especially if I need to true the wheels later?

dweenk 07-27-20 12:05 PM


Originally Posted by thumpism (Post 21609403)
The Sprites I've seen have all been 27" wheeled and derailleur-shifted, not to say they might not have made some IG bikes over the years with that name. The non-peaked fenders also seems to be a Sprite thing, but I might not have noticed other variations when I've seen them. I also never measured this but would be curious to know the distance from axle slots to brake mounting holes on the front and the rear of the Sportses and Sprites; I suspect the Sprites measure greater for 27" clearance.

I have a 1969/70 Sprite step through with the S-5 hub. It had plastic S/A downtube shifters that were broken when I bought it. I put two standard shifters on the bars and put it away as a future project. It seems to have the same frame dimensions as the Sports, no way 27" wheels would fit. Oh, it came from Richmond courtesy of a friend.

Narhay 07-27-20 02:19 PM


Originally Posted by hdkct (Post 21609613)
My old Raleigh DL-1 rims are in reasonably good shape, but a couple of spokes are protruding far enough on the inside of the rim that they push through the rim tape and cut into the tubes. I am considering filing those spoke nubs down until they are smooth. I'm looking for opinions regarding this. Will I be causing any potential problems, especially if I need to true the wheels later?

There are spoke end snippers. You should be fine to file them down as the nipple when unscrewing should clean up the threads on the way out.

arty dave 07-27-20 04:15 PM


Originally Posted by Narhay (Post 21609418)
Close this loop. Before and after. 1969 Raleigh Superbe.

https://i.imgur.com/GjYF3B1.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/uqzqwlK.jpg

That cleaned up really nicely! Great choice with the whitewalls. Alloy seatpost? A lot of these old 3 speeds seem to look saggy (all that droopy cable) and depressed before their facelift. I can appreciate how much work you've put into this, seeing the little things like tweeked fender stays etc. Yours looks like it's now eager for another lifetime of riding.

Narhay 07-27-20 04:51 PM


Originally Posted by arty dave (Post 21610159)
That cleaned up really nicely! Great choice with the whitewalls. Alloy seatpost? A lot of these old 3 speeds seem to look saggy (all that droopy cable) and depressed before their facelift. I can appreciate how much work you've put into this, seeing the little things like tweeked fender stays etc. Yours looks like it's now eager for another lifetime of riding.

Thanks, that is really quite high praise. I did take the stays and squeeze them in a vise.

At 6'2" the stubby little OEM steel posts just dont have enough length so I upgraded to an alloy pillar. I was going to go for alloy bars as well but these cleaned up nice enough that I didn't feel the need to replace what was still good.

jackbombay 07-27-20 05:04 PM


Originally Posted by barnfind (Post 21608988)
My question is, did they build an internal geared hub Sprite in 27" or is this someone's creation from back in the day?

From 1968 to 1973 or so the Sprite had a 5 speed IGH from the factory, it will say "% speed" on the down tube if yours was one of the IGH models, I think all the later ones were 10 speeds?

I have a 5 speed model, 1968 model, I did a "resto mod patina" build on it, 650b wheelset, bunch of aluminum bits, Ti BB, Campy crank... This bike is a super nice townie!

https://i.postimg.cc/zX8TWjm6/8-C2-D...2-D24-AE63.jpg

barnfind 07-27-20 05:14 PM


Originally Posted by thumpism (Post 21609403)
The Sprites I've seen have all been 27" wheeled and derailleur-shifted, not to say they might not have made some IG bikes over the years with that name. The non-peaked fenders also seems to be a Sprite thing, but I might not have noticed other variations when I've seen them. I also never measured this but would be curious to know the distance from axle slots to brake mounting holes on the front and the rear of the Sportses and Sprites; I suspect the Sprites measure greater for 27" clearance.

The forks on the 27" Sprite in question are roughly 1 1/4" longer than those on a Sports with the same bend and width. While I didn't measure them exactly, they're hanging side by side on the trailer. (my one trailer has 2" bars across the top running both side to side and front to back, I use them to hang bikes from above the rest of the load, and I've got pieces of cardboard, (sides of old bike boxes cut to hang in between each bike for those I'm concerned about scratching.
Right now its about 110 degrees in that trailer, so I didn't get in there today to take any measurements. The two things that stand out that are different are the ridged fenders and the AW hub. The brake calipers are the same as on a similar year Sports model, so the fork and rear triangle have to be made to place the rim at the right point to work with those calipers.
I have a couple of later Sprite 27 models, and those have decals saying just that, those all have stamped crown forks, not even as nice as a Grand Prix, flat top or round top fenders, and short, 3" riser bars that barely turn back at all. They resemble the bars used on many mixte frames.
They also do not have DT pump pegs.
The decals on the brown Sprite are exact to a similar year Sports I've got, only the DT decal is different.
I do have a few earlier Sprites, that are early 60's models that are also 27" with the same forks, but those are derailleur bikes with half step cranksets and 27x1 1/4" tires.
They also have far less rake to the fork angle, alloy brake calipers, drop bars, etc.

The one reason I found this bike is that I went into that trailer the other day looking for a donor bike for a brown fork, I've got a 21" Sports with a mismatched fork and needed a brown fork. Otherwise it may have hung there unnoticed for a long time.
I looked all over that frame but found no serial number, its not anywhere on the top seat tube lug, its not on the bottom bracket, its not on either rear dropout and its not on the headtube. The only marking I found on the whole frame is an 'X" stamped in the middle of the bottom of the bottom bracket shell.

Like I mantioned before though, the frame isn't a fixer upper, the DT is dented from being hit by the caliper, its got some kickstand indentations in the chain stays, and the top tube paint is pretty beat up from having a rusty 1/2" cow chain wrapped around it. Its most likely ridable but no one would want a bike with a dented tube.
The nearly 10ft of 1/2" grade 70 chain is likely worth more than the frame.
The chrome bits are minty clean, with no rust pitting, the crank arms are 5mm longer than those on a Sports model. but with the same chainwheel.
If its matters, the chainwheel has the extra V shape webs inbetween the herons. The chain is 1/8" with no brand on the links, The seat and post are identical to a Sports model as are the bars, stem, and brakes. The grips however are not the typical Raleigh ribbed style grips, they're the older style round grips sort of gray/white in color with Raleigh Industries in fine print around the edge.
The lack of serial number also has me wondering but I don't think its the first bike I've not found a serial number on. For whatever reason, the guy who had all this stuff saved this bike, and he had very little 27" anything at all. Only a dozen or so Raleigh's in all.
Another reason this bike slipped by me noticing it at first is that it likely got loaded by one of my helpers that day, I had pretty much instructed them to load anything they were told to by the woman there and we'll sort it out later, which is what I'm slowly getting around too now in this heat.
I just found out I've got another huge lot to clean out in a few weeks, the same broker tells me its a definite but their just waiting for the papers to be finalized. I'm told its packed to the ceiling too. At this point I have no idea if its all bike parts or not but its a paying job that I'm told will take four trailers at the minimum. So I'm sort of rushing through a lot of the stuff here now trying to free up at least one of the two remaining trailers so I don't have to rent or borrow too many trailers when the time comes.
I'm not sure what's going on this year but its been one after the other since around last October. In the past, I maybe found one big lot every year or so.




Originally Posted by dweenk (Post 21609647)
I have a 1969/70 Sprite step through with the S-5 hub. It had plastic S/A downtube shifters that were broken when I bought it. I put two standard shifters on the bars and put it away as a future project. It seems to have the same frame dimensions as the Sports, no way 27" wheels would fit. Oh, it came from Richmond courtesy of a friend.

I've got at least two of those here myself, there's one pretty clean light green ladies Sprite with the S5 hub, and another in so-so shape with two baskets on it in an extra tall ladies frame. I think I only found one men's model from those years. I think all of mine are 1967 models judging by the hub dates.
The Sprite forks are definitely different, the 26" forks and frames will not take 27" wheels, and the 27" bike with 26" wheels would pose a caliper issue. I don't think even the longest reach caliper would make that work.

There is one 28" wheel bike, which has similar fenders but the wheels are marked Barrett, Made in Italy, the tires are brick tread much like a Schwinn middleweight, and marked 28x1 1/2" and ISO 635-40 on the sidewalls. The tires are made in Thailand. Its got Endrick style rims, fairly wide with steel calipers, and Raleigh Sports type fenders and frame. There's also another single speed in the same lot, its a gold color frame, its got a fancy headbadge that reads Palm City Cycles with all other script on the bike in Japanese writing. The wheels are steel, the tires are 26x1 1/2" ISO 584-40, or 650B-40 with a Maeda three speed hub, ridged top and peaked fenders, and DNB brakes. The frame measures about 23" tall. Its old, by the look of the decals and style I'd say its from the late 60's or so. The hub appears to be a rebadged SA AW, but the shifter is smaller, more like that of a Torpedo three speed but marked Suntour. I'm not sure about the wheels or why they went with 650b, but the bike appears to be build for them. I may save this one just because its an oddity here. I doubt its anything high end but the headbadge is pretty well made, not just a chunk of printed aluminum riveted on or a plain decal.

gster 07-27-20 07:26 PM


Originally Posted by Narhay (Post 21609418)
Close this loop. Before and after. 1969 Raleigh Superbe.

https://i.imgur.com/GjYF3B1.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/uqzqwlK.jpg

well done.

thumpism 07-28-20 05:18 AM

Austrian, Puch-ish. Overpriced for the condition but plenty quaint.

https://richmond.craigslist.org/bik/...166566320.html

JC Higgins Vintage - $350 (RICHMOND)

https://images.craigslist.org/00e0e_...iP_600x450.jpg

bicycle frame material: steel
bicycle type: cruiser
brake type: u-brakes
condition: fair
electric assist: none
frame size: Medium
handlebar type: cruiser
make / manufacturer: JC Higgins
model name / number: Bike
serial number: Cannot locate
suspension: none (rigid)
wheel size: 700C
Vintage JC Higgins built in Austria. 2- speed hub and original paint. Probably a 1961 model, but I am no expert. This was a great cruiser for college and it runs great.

thumpism 07-29-20 05:51 AM

Trifecta! Looks taller than your "usual" 23" men's frame, 700C wheels and drum brakes.

https://richmond.craigslist.org/bik/...167668598.html

61cm Mens Union Viking 3spd Bike For Sale - $325 (Mechanicsville)

https://images.craigslist.org/00j0j_...MM_600x450.jpg
bicycle frame material: steel
bicycle type: road
frame size: 61cm
wheel size: 700C
I have a 61cm mens Union Viking 3spd bike for sale. This bike has front and rear drum brakes, 3spd Sturmy Archer internal hub and shifter. This bike has steel frame, 700c wheel, 3pc crank. This bike has been serviced and detailed and is ready to ride. If interested please contact me.

gster 07-29-20 10:11 AM

Recently, I've been working on some modern kid's bikes as a favour and I am
truly appalled at the complexity and poor quality of the components.

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...39f020b7f5.jpg
Both came out of the trash and are fairly new.
They both have ridiculous/complicated grip shifters and massive brake leavers.
It makes me appreciate the elegant simplicity of
our classic 3 speeds.

Narhay 07-29-20 11:05 AM


Originally Posted by gster (Post 21613233)
Recently, I've been working on some modern kid's bikes as a favour and I am
truly appalled at the complexity and poor quality of the components.

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...39f020b7f5.jpg
Both came out of the trash and are fairly new.
They both have ridiculous/complicated grip shifters and massive brake leavers.
It makes me appreciate the elegant simplicity of
our classic 3 speeds.

It is an exercise in frustration. Try adjusting the hubs - about 1 degree between complete binding and the wheel flopping around.

Narhay 07-29-20 11:06 AM

Do any of you while freewheeling have your cranks continue to spin? There isnt drag but the cog seems to like to spin every now and then on all the 3 speeds with AW hubs I have had.

gster 07-29-20 11:15 AM


Originally Posted by Narhay (Post 21613385)
Do any of you while freewheeling have your cranks continue to spin? There isnt drag but the cog seems to like to spin every now and then on all the 3 speeds with AW hubs I have had.

Yes, most hubs will do that occasionally.
Some more than others.
I find running through all the gears will sometimes calm it down.

Narhay 07-30-20 06:43 AM

https://i.imgur.com/HWsF6Dj.jpg

I've ridden the '69 Superbe about 40km over the past week. Quite nice. I think the only downside is the too high gearing even with an 18T cog (48T front) and the rims could probably stand to be replaced. It looks like the 590 Sun CR18 rims are very hard to find these days, not to mention the 32/40 drilling variant. I guess this size is going the way of the dodo for modern replacements.

The other option would be to find a ladies model that was ridden twice and hung in the garage for 50 years and harvest the rims off that.

jackbombay 07-30-20 10:03 AM


Originally Posted by Narhay (Post 21614741)
It looks like the 590 Sun CR18 rims are very hard to find these days, not to mention the 32/40 drilling variant.

Its not too bad to lace a 40 hole sturmey to a 32 hole rim, https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-v...-hole-rim.html

JaccoW 07-30-20 10:22 AM

Spotted a rod operated drum brake Raleigh last week and what looked like a modern replica of a rod operated rim brake model. I thought it was cool. :)
The weird thing about the black bike is that it had a sticker head badge but still used cottered cranks.

I think it says Ly-Bike but nothing shows up.

http://i.imgur.com/wVs2waXh.jpg
(Direct link to full-size original)

JaccoW 07-30-20 10:42 AM


Originally Posted by thumpism (Post 21612780)
Trifecta! Looks taller than your "usual" 23" men's frame, 700C wheels and drum brakes.

https://richmond.craigslist.org/bik/...167668598.html

61cm Mens Union Viking 3spd Bike For Sale - $325 (Mechanicsville)

https://images.craigslist.org/00j0j_...MM_600x450.jpg
bicycle frame material: steel
bicycle type: road
frame size: 61cm
wheel size: 700C
I have a 61cm mens Union Viking 3spd bike for sale. This bike has front and rear drum brakes, 3spd Sturmy Archer internal hub and shifter. This bike has steel frame, 700c wheel, 3pc crank. This bike has been serviced and detailed and is ready to ride. If interested please contact me.

Looks like a Dutch model, especially with the white fender bit. The chain case and lights make me think it is an 80's model, especially compared to the varnished cloth chaincase on the 1977 model.
These usually go for around €50 to €80 here in the Netherlands but I know US prices are a lot higher, especially for rarer models.

The company is still in business.
Their Uniun Flow model (aluminum frame, steel fork) is used by Swapfiets for a fixed monthly price bike rental service.

gster 07-30-20 12:58 PM

Iverson!
This bike came back today for a quick fix.
It was slipping in second gear.
Japanese frame with a S/A drive train.
It was a gift to a young lady across the street in return for house sitting and cat feeding.
https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...0bf2c123d5.jpg
https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...04059bab8a.jpg
https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...742423b1c8.jpg

gster 07-30-20 01:00 PM


Originally Posted by Narhay (Post 21614741)
https://i.imgur.com/HWsF6Dj.jpg

I've ridden the '69 Superbe about 40km over the past week. Quite nice. I think the only downside is the too high gearing even with an 18T cog (48T front) and the rims could probably stand to be replaced. It looks like the 590 Sun CR18 rims are very hard to find these days, not to mention the 32/40 drilling variant. I guess this size is going the way of the dodo for modern replacements.

The other option would be to find a ladies model that was ridden twice and hung in the garage for 50 years and harvest the rims off that.

There's a bike down the street from me that hasn't moved in a year. I'm going to offer the
owner $30.00. I just want the wheels and some other parts.


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