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

desconhecido 03-27-18 09:57 PM


Originally Posted by Salubrious (Post 20247954)
Yet another candidate for a cotter press!

If you whack them out, you run the risk of damaging the bearing cups, bearings and bottom bracket axle, the crank arm(s), plus the cotters themselves. If your whack is unsuccessful, drilling might become the only option, and the resulting damage to the axle can be heartbreaking- they are not that common any more. The original cotters are usually much harder than the new ones you find these days, and if your bike has the 'Raleigh nuts' retaining the cotters, they probably won't be usable with a replacement.[...]

After my first adventure trying to extract original cotters from an old Raleigh Sports I bought a cotter press from the BikeSmith guy. It's a bit older design than his current, but works fine. I hart my cotter press.

The first ones I had to drill out after having smashed them attempting removal. Even with the press, I've found it tough to remove the old cotters without bending them. I've ended up drilling a couple sets. I am fortunate in having a drill press which makes it easier, but it's still sort of an adventure with the drill press quill rotating in close proximity to the chain ring. Anyway, if they must be drilled, it's not too bad. A 6mm or 1/4" bit will find the softer material of the cotter and won't damage the spindle. That's my experience, anyway.

Cheap cotters can be had, but the R nuts won't work on them -- or any new cotter, as far as I know. The cotter material is really quite soft and easy to file. Just file them to about the profile that bikesmith shows for Raleigh cotters and if they press in about the same amount on both sides, well, Bob's your uncle.

If you're trying to save the old cotters, I've found that applying heat helps. Put the press on and crank it down so there's a bit of force on it but not enough to bend anything and while the press is in place, heat that puppy up with a heat gun and it's likely to come free.

Chaser95 03-27-18 11:02 PM

I made a cotter press from a top beam clamp and an old machine nut. I put the nut on the back side of the cotter to give it a space to go as the clamp is putting the pressure on the cotter. Works great!

gster 03-28-18 04:01 AM

3 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by boattail71 (Post 20249209)
Thanks, Club. So Gliders are not common here in the States. Yes? Hence my ignorance as a life-long Coloradoan. I'll try to be happy with my limited knowledge of my shy English stable including Raleigh, Hercules, Robin Hood, and Western Flyer (Norman), and I think I have a Sun somewhere. Regardless, I'll try to glide over arcane brands I'm likely not gonna see anytime soon. Logic appreciable? Gliding info is appreciable of course - don't wanna sound callus. Thanks all! And keep informing me/us.

--Ignorant but trying.

Here's a recent Glider project of mine
Attachment 604942
And another
[ATTACH]Attachment 604944[/ATTACH]

gster 03-28-18 04:13 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by gster (Post 20249494)
here's a recent glider project of mine
Attachment 604942
and another
[attach]Attachment 604944[/attach]

Attachment 604946
Using the inflation calculator, $31.50 in 1933 works out to $588.00 today.

BigChief 03-28-18 06:17 AM


Originally Posted by desconhecido (Post 20249367)
After my first adventure trying to extract original cotters from an old Raleigh Sports I bought a cotter press from the BikeSmith guy. It's a bit older design than his current, but works fine. I hart my cotter press.

The first ones I had to drill out after having smashed them attempting removal. Even with the press, I've found it tough to remove the old cotters without bending them. I've ended up drilling a couple sets. I am fortunate in having a drill press which makes it easier, but it's still sort of an adventure with the drill press quill rotating in close proximity to the chain ring. Anyway, if they must be drilled, it's not too bad. A 6mm or 1/4" bit will find the softer material of the cotter and won't damage the spindle. That's my experience, anyway.

Cheap cotters can be had, but the R nuts won't work on them -- or any new cotter, as far as I know. The cotter material is really quite soft and easy to file. Just file them to about the profile that bikesmith shows for Raleigh cotters and if they press in about the same amount on both sides, well, Bob's your uncle.

If you're trying to save the old cotters, I've found that applying heat helps. Put the press on and crank it down so there's a bit of force on it but not enough to bend anything and while the press is in place, heat that puppy up with a heat gun and it's likely to come free.

I haven't yet had to drill all the way through a cotter to remove it. Hope I didn't jinx myself here! The important thing I've found is that if the threaded end of the cotter starts to bend from pressing, there's no point in pressing or driving it any further. It's like trying to drive a bent nail. I file a flat on the end of the cotter, center punch it and drill into it a little bit so I have a good center to keep the force in the right direction. Then I use a husky pointed center punch and hammer to drive the pin. It also makes a lot of sense to support the crank with something solid while you drive the cotter. Like a piece of 2x4 with a hole for the cotter against a cement floor.

Chaser95 03-28-18 08:46 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by Ballenxj (Post 20249312)
Western Flyer? Were some of those made in England? I always thought they were all built in the U.S.?

Yes.......mine has the remnants of the familiar "Made in england" script on the top.

paulb_in_bkln 03-28-18 08:49 AM

Will be replacing a stripped AW hub axle (early 70s) with a NOS one. A kit of replacement parts came with four axle washers, the ones that prevent the axle rotating in the slot in the dropout. Two pair, slightly different in size and detail. Anyone know the reasons for the two different types? For different hub models?

desconhecido 03-28-18 09:06 AM


Originally Posted by paulb_in_bkln (Post 20249874)
Will be replacing a stripped AW hub axle (early 70s) with a NOS one. A kit of replacement parts came with four axle washers, the ones that prevent the axle rotating in the slot in the dropout. Two pair, slightly different in size and detail. Anyone know the reasons for the two different types? For different hub models?

If I'm understanding correctly, you have two different anti-rotation washer sets -- one for each of the possible dropout widths you may encounter.

Look:
https://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/...her-parts.html

I think you are talking about part #20 Part# HMW155 and HMW494.

browngw 03-28-18 09:30 AM


Originally Posted by browngw (Post 20247990)
While at a Sports/ Bicycle(Giant) shop in a neighbouring town this morning, I spied these in an old drawer while looking for a brake hanger for centre pull brakes. I picked up some tubes and pedals and the springs were thrown in for free. Looks like a lifetime supply of both SA and Shimano pawl springs. Must be more than a 100.

Actually, I counted them last night and there are 87. If anyone needs a few let me know. I will take some to the Canadian Vintage Bicycle Show in June to share with my Canadian 3speed colleagues.

thumpism 03-28-18 09:33 AM


Originally Posted by boattail71 (Post 20249209)
Thanks, Club. So Gliders are not common here in the States. Yes? Hence my ignorance as a life-long Coloradoan. I'll try to be happy with my limited knowledge of my shy English stable including Raleigh, Hercules, Robin Hood, and Western Flyer (Norman), and I think I have a Sun somewhere. Regardless, I'll try to glide over arcane brands I'm likely not gonna see anytime soon. Logic appreciable? Gliding info is appreciable of course - don't wanna sound callus. Thanks all! And keep informing me/us.

--Ignorant but trying.

Gliders pop up occasionally in the States. There was one here on CL several months ago. Maybe they come south for the winter and like the longer riding season.

boattail71 03-28-18 10:58 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by Ballenxj (Post 20249312)
Western Flyer? Were some of those made in England? I always thought they were all built in the U.S.?

I have a men's/women's Norman built Western Flyer purchased new by my folks in 1958 from a Western Auto in Wyoming. The men's bike has the much maligned Sturmey SW hub. I also have a more common US made Western Flyer one-speed probably built by Murray.

paulb_in_bkln 03-28-18 11:18 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by desconhecido (Post 20249925)
If I'm understanding correctly, you have two different anti-rotation washer sets -- one for each of the possible dropout widths you may encounter.

I think you are talking about part #20 Part# HMW155 and HMW494.

Yes, two different anti-rotation washers. One is like HMW155. The other doesn't show in Sheldon's list, the tabs that fit in the dropout slot are straight, not curvy, and the washer's outside diameter is slightly bigger. But they fit the same size slot and axle. I could use either but HMW155 is a snugger fit. My real confusion was whether both sets are supposed to be used, one inside the dropouts, the other on the outside. But now I think no--either type could go inside or outside the dropout, but if used on the inside, I'd want to have a plain flatwasher under the axle nut. (The photo shows the difference.)

desconhecido 03-28-18 11:43 AM


Originally Posted by paulb_in_bkln (Post 20250240)
Yes, two different anti-rotation washers. One is like HMW155. The other doesn't show in Sheldon's list, the tabs that fit in the dropout slot are straight, not curvy, and the washer's outside diameter is slightly bigger. But they fit the same size slot and axle. I could use either but HMW155 is a snugger fit. My real confusion was whether both sets are supposed to be used, one inside the dropouts, the other on the outside. But now I think no--either type could go inside or outside the dropout, but if used on the inside, I'd want to have a plain flatwasher under the axle nut. (The photo shows the difference.)

BTSOOM. I don't think I've ever seen one of those. Unless there is a difference in thickness to adjust for sllightly different dropout spacing, I don't know. Can't find a matching picture in the SA stuff from SJS, which seems to have the most complete selection of SA.

BigChief 03-28-18 12:49 PM

I use the anti rotation washers on the outside of the dropout. Easier to install that way. I prefer the type on the left. They allow more room to adjust chain tension.

paulb_in_bkln 03-28-18 01:15 PM


Originally Posted by desconhecido (Post 20250297)
BTSOOM.

Ha! I don't think it will make a big difference which I use. Just glad I found a NOS axle so I'm not clapping on another old clapped out one. Just for the record, I love the English bikes with these 3-speed hubs and it bothers me to see so many unappreciated, abandoned here on the sidewalk, getting beat up by the elements until eventually there's nothing left. The open frame (girls) models especially get no respect. Also I'm glad after all these years to have an excuse to rebuild one. I've never tried that before.

Ballenxj 03-28-18 02:48 PM


Originally Posted by Chaser95 (Post 20249864)
Yes.......mine has the remnants of the familiar "Made in england" script on the top.

Thanks for the answers Chaser5 and Boattail71. :thumb: Are there a lot of these still around?

dweenk 03-28-18 02:58 PM


Originally Posted by browngw (Post 20249991)
Actually, I counted them last night and there are 87. If anyone needs a few let me know. I will take some to the Canadian Vintage Bicycle Show in June to share with my Canadian 3speed colleagues.

If you need any more Shimano parts, let me know. I have a small box of various parts that I have not bothered to catalog. I think all of them are for 333 hubs. Free for mailing cost.

Chaser95 03-28-18 04:12 PM


Originally Posted by Ballenxj (Post 20250686)
Thanks for the answers Chaser5 and Boattail71. :thumb: Are there a lot of these still around?

I can't say. I live in a rural area and all 3 speeds are scarce. However, two Western Flyers popped up on here in a short time. Seems to me like all the bikes are in Canada and New England. I am learning that Raleigh made bikes for many companies and why not? That factory was huge! Hey Boattail71........is that a Buick?

Ballenxj 03-28-18 04:18 PM


Originally Posted by Chaser95 (Post 20250827)
Hey Boattail71........is that a Buick?

edit, you may be right. https://www.buick-riviera.com/

boattail71 03-28-18 09:48 PM


Originally Posted by paulb_in_bkln (Post 20250495)
Ha! I don't think it will make a big difference which I use. Just glad I found a NOS axle so I'm not clapping on another old clapped out one. Just for the record, I love the English bikes with these 3-speed hubs and it bothers me to see so many unappreciated, abandoned here on the sidewalk, getting beat up by the elements until eventually there's nothing left. The open frame (girls) models especially get no respect. Also I'm glad after all these years to have an excuse to rebuild one. I've never tried that before.

Open? I appreciate the "open?" frame. This baby boomer calls them "women's" or "ladies" bikes. Millennials call them "step-through," for some reason but I digress. These classics are cherished by (some) co-eds in my college town so I aspire to resurrect derelict 3-speeds, especially the "women's" bikes, and get them back on the road for less than the cost of a new bike. We all win.

BigChief 03-29-18 03:09 AM


Originally Posted by boattail71 (Post 20251362)
Open? I appreciate the "open?" frame. This baby boomer calls them "women's" or "ladies" bikes. Millennials call them "step-through," for some reason but I digress. These classics are cherished by (some) co-eds in my college town so I aspire to resurrect derelict 3-speeds, especially the "women's" bikes, and get them back on the road for less than the cost of a new bike. We all win.

I'm glad to hear that, although in my experience I have trouble giving away old English ladies 3 speeds. For some reason that I don't understand this particular nitch of C&V cycling is almost totally dominated by grown men. I hope your experience is a new trend and more women will come into the fold. It's a fun hobby and the old bikes are still practical and certainly better looking than most modern bikes. Most of the time, I use the term stepthrough because it makes more sense to modern cyclists, but the old fashioned ladies and gents is nice in a vintage context.

paulb_in_bkln 03-29-18 07:15 AM


Originally Posted by boattail71 (Post 20251362)
Open? I appreciate the "open?" frame. This baby boomer calls them "women's" or "ladies" bikes. Millennials call them "step-through," for some reason but I digress. These classics are cherished by (some) co-eds in my college town so I aspire to resurrect derelict 3-speeds, especially the "women's" bikes, and get them back on the road for less than the cost of a new bike. We all win.

I'm chastened. I also wish I could legally emancipate all the forsaken ones locked to parking signs here and send them on to you for rehabilitation. What's college for, anyway?

BigChief 03-29-18 08:35 AM

Well, at least they are good for parts to rescue the more wanted gents 3 speeds. Something I've wondered about but don't know is whether one of the ladies size forks will work on a gents 23" frame. Everything but the frame is usable and ends up being about a tenth of the price of buying the parts separately.

nlerner 03-29-18 09:32 AM

When I've had to source fenders and chainguards for men's 3-speed builds, I've ended up buying a couple of lady's 3-speeds to harvest those parts and then re-selling at low prices with non-original fitments. Similar to @BigChief's experience, in this market, there are usually lots of lady's 3-speeds available at low prices.

desconhecido 03-29-18 11:42 AM


Originally Posted by BigChief (Post 20251867)
Well, at least they are good for parts to rescue the more wanted gents 3 speeds. Something I've wondered about but don't know is whether one of the ladies size forks will work on a gents 23" frame. Everything but the frame is usable and ends up being about a tenth of the price of buying the parts separately.

We've got a couple step throughs -- ladies, if you prefer. Also have a Raleigh Grand Prix step through from about 1971. Haven't measured the steerer on either the ladies Sports or Superbe, but I did measure the steerer on the Gran Prix and found it to be real close to 2" longer than the steerer on a 21" "Gents" Sports. I think that the fork from a 21" step through would probably be pretty close to the same as a 23" "Gents."

Salubrious 03-29-18 12:00 PM


Originally Posted by BigChief (Post 20251519)
I'm glad to hear that, although in my experience I have trouble giving away old English ladies 3 speeds. For some reason that I don't understand this particular nitch of C&V cycling is almost totally dominated by grown men. I hope your experience is a new trend and more women will come into the fold. It's a fun hobby and the old bikes are still practical and certainly better looking than most modern bikes. Most of the time, I use the term stepthrough because it makes more sense to modern cyclists, but the old fashioned ladies and gents is nice in a vintage context.

I took my GF on the Lake Pepin 3-speed Tour last year.

After that she bought a 3-speed on her own- a 1972 'step through' Superbe. The finish was in very good condition as was the chrome; I took it home and redid all the bearings while she watched (she actually wanted to see how it was done; I don't have a reason to think she was humoring me...). I found a key for the fork, now we have matching 1972 Superbes in green. She has troubles with getting over the top tube of regular frames so the step through has been a real boon.

Bring on a friend on the Lake Pepin 3-speed tour... comin' up in 6 weeks!

BigChief 03-29-18 01:20 PM

@Salubrious That's great. There's no reason that riding old English bikes should be a (guy) hobby. I'm sure we would get more women involved if they knew it about it.

browngw 03-29-18 01:42 PM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by dweenk (Post 20250703)
If you need any more Shimano parts, let me know. I have a small box of various parts that I have not bothered to catalog. I think all of them are for 333 hubs. Free for mailing cost.


Thanks for the offer but I think I'm good for now. I have only one bike with a Shimano 3speed and its is missing parts (front wheel) and is well down on the list of projects.


It would be nice to have a registry of all these parts out there (like 87 pawl springs!) that we could share. I have other SA parts I know I will never use but hate to toss them in the scrap steel bin.

paulb_in_bkln 03-29-18 02:35 PM

I just finished rebuilding the hub. I should have inspected the axle under better light; it was indeed the nut, not the axle, that stripped. But everything inside was quite crusty (AW hub, 1972), so not a bad thing to do. And I've always wanted to take one of these apart.

Like many others, at the very end of the 60s I caught the 10-speed bug and ignored three speeds for many years. I'm sorry about that, now. I also think about the few grownups I'd see on three speeds then and how some of them had modified the bikes slightly for a sportier look. First things: flip over the handlebars and change to rat trap pedals. Also lose the chainguard and fenders, or switch to plastic fenders. I'm not sure if aluminum wheels were available in the stock size then. And I don't think anyone did a cotterless crank conversion. CCs were expensive.

boattail71 03-29-18 05:39 PM


Originally Posted by desconhecido (Post 20252213)
We've got a couple step throughs -- ladies, if you prefer. Also have a Raleigh Grand Prix step through from about 1971. Haven't measured the steerer on either the ladies Sports or Superbe, but I did measure the steerer on the Gran Prix and found it to be real close to 2" longer than the steerer on a 21" "Gents" Sports. I think that the fork from a 21" step through would probably be pretty close to the same as a 23" "Gents."

I've long wondered where the term "step through" came from. My guess is that it helps a flipper sell them to a wider market. That is, a younger man might not ride a bike termed "womens/ladies" but might ride a "step-through." In fact I've run across college guys who look at my women's bikes and have no clue that they were originally marketed to girls.


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