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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 04-04-21, 09:36 PM
  #24226  
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The 1970s-era vinyl bags are a nice accessory to have for completeness, but as bags go, they're kind of mediocre. If you could get it fixed conveniently, do it because it's nice to have original stuff around. Don't be afraid to change bags though if it gives you trouble. In the luxury range, I prefer a Carradice bag, and in the more budget range, I like Banjo Brothers canvas bags.
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Old 04-04-21, 09:48 PM
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
The 1970s-era vinyl bags are a nice accessory to have for completeness, but as bags go, they're kind of mediocre. If you could get it fixed conveniently, do it because it's nice to have original stuff around. Don't be afraid to change bags though if it gives you trouble. In the luxury range, I prefer a Carradice bag, and in the more budget range, I like Banjo Brothers canvas bags.
You wouldn't happen to have a suggestion for a compact, round bag like this one, would you? I love the shape and the look, but it's an utter POS with no strength to the sides (it's off a Wal-Mart Panama Jack Huffy, so I shouldn't be expecting anything out of it in the first place).



-Kurt
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Old 04-05-21, 01:59 AM
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Originally Posted by gster View Post
I think its fair to say that these bikes that we collect/restore have a limited appeal to the general public and they'd rather go to Wal-Mart etc and buy a shiny piece of junk that will barely last 2/3 years.
My neigbour gave me her not so old box store bike last week and I said I'd fix it up and find a suitable home for it.
What a piece of junk! Rusted fasteners/chain, cables all seized, front suspension seized , seat post stuck etc.
She did leave it outside.
The quality of British chrome is amazing.
The new/crap bikes are already rusting on the showroom floor.....
I have a guy down the street who buys and sells bikes as a hobby and to make extra money, he does only what's needed to make it a usable bike.
I make out great because he won't touch English bikes, he wants nothing to do with them and says they won't sell and there's no money to be made. He prefers Schwinn, Huffy, or Murry beach cruisers or any road bike.
He says he can take a quality bike, go all through it and list it for sale and it won't get a single email, yet if he lists a Walmart bike or an old Huffy or Murray, they're gone in a day.
To me, it sounds like brand recognition, the generation today who is buying back the bikes of their youth never knew good bikes, they were all gone by the time they were old enough to ride a bike.

One of the biggest problem around this area is a lack or real bike shops, most sell either department store type bikes, or super high end road bikes. None stock parts anymore.
The pandemic actually seems to have shut down many bike shops who won't return, I know of several shops that closed up their doors for good last summer.
Walmart here isn't a player in the bike market here anymore. For whatever reason, they seem to have stopped selling adult bikes and now only have small kids bikes. They cut back on the size of the bike rack and moved the bikes to a rear corner of the store. Prior to 2018, they had two full rows of bikes of all types. One Walmart about 30 miles or so from me still has big bikes, but they're not yet undergone the redesign that many have gone through here. They removed the tire and parts section in 2018 and sold off all the parts in the clearance isle. No more tires, tubes, parts, nothing. They have tire pumps on the end of one isle in the sporting goods section. Target however still sells a full array of cheap bikes. I've not been in Target in a few years so I can't say what they do or don't have in stock.
We lost the last real bikes shop about 8 or 10 years ago, a shop that had been around since the 50's, the owner simply got old and retired, when he sold the building, it became a dollar store.

There's a few sellers on CL with parts, I just bought a dozen 26x1 3/8" 590mm size tires from a guy who's a regular seller. He mostly does motorcycles but his tire source also has bike tires. I paid $12 per tire for MIchelin World Tour tires in black, and $8.99 for Kenda gumwalls back in Nov. He's had them listed all year but said he got only one other buyer all year.
There's certainly seems to be more bikes than buyers, and those who do call expect to buy for nearly nothing.

I've watched pretty much the same bikes listed for the last couple years, some good, some not so much but I don't see any big rush to buy up bikes.
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Old 04-05-21, 05:19 AM
  #24229  
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
You wouldn't happen to have a suggestion for a compact, round bag like this one, would you? I love the shape and the look, but it's an utter POS with no strength to the sides (it's off a Wal-Mart Panama Jack Huffy, so I shouldn't be expecting anything out of it in the first place).



-Kurt
There was a member that sold two over a year ago in the C&V sales section. I bought the black one and I'm very happy with it so far. https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-v...ddle-bags.html
I'm not sure if he's open to making more though.
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Old 04-05-21, 08:00 AM
  #24230  
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Department Store Raleigh?
Listed as Made in England/Assembled in Canada

1970's Fleetwing 3 speed.
Fleetwing was a house brand for Simpsons and later the Hudson Bay Company.
Canada had some complicated tariffs re imported bicycles in the 70's to shore up domestic CCM production.
I've often suspected that Canadian made Raleighs were really just assembled/painted here.
My Canadian Superbe has a different green paint that it's English counterpart.

Canadian version/Forest Green

English version/Olive Green
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Old 04-05-21, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by gster View Post
DMy Canadian Superbe has a different green paint that it's English counterpart.
Can you post a larger picture? Is it the same brighter green as used on the US 1977+ models? I notice the CA version has silver panels instead of black.

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Old 04-05-21, 08:44 AM
  #24232  
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I've had a least a half dozen of these brighter greens from the 70's. This pic shows the colour best in my mind's eye.
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Old 04-05-21, 08:48 AM
  #24233  
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For a small, barrel-type bag, I use the Banjo Brothers Minnehaha canvas barrel bag. The Minnehaha has a hard plastic interior liner that is kind of a half-log shape that prevents it from getting too deformed. It's good for an afternoon ride type thing - wallet, keys, cellphone, etc. It won't hold a ton of stuff, but it's enough for me to go riding for a couple hours on a nice day. I have one bike with a Carradice "Zipped Roll" bag, which is a little bigger but similar sort of thing. It's a better bag, but it's also more expensive. I like both.
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Old 04-05-21, 08:50 AM
  #24234  
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Originally Posted by oldspokes View Post
Walmart here isn't a player in the bike market here anymore. For whatever reason, they seem to have stopped selling adult bikes and now only have small kids bikes. They cut back on the size of the bike rack and moved the bikes to a rear corner of the store.
We have a thriving lbs in town who tripled their sales last year. Now they're in trouble with an inventory of 7 adult bikes. They won't get any new stock in 2021 so I don't know how they'll survive. Maybe double their shop rate for repairs.
I think big box stores have the same issue. Costco has one tenth of the number of bikes on the floor this spring. Supply chains are broken.
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Old 04-05-21, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
We have a thriving lbs in town who tripled their sales last year. Now they're in trouble with an inventory of 7 adult bikes. They won't get any new stock in 2021 so I don't know how they'll survive. Maybe double their shop rate for repairs.
I think big box stores have the same issue. Costco has one tenth of the number of bikes on the floor this spring. Supply chains are broken.
Both of our small town local shops are having problems getting stock as well. Fortunately they have survived this long by being part of a diversified business and will survive. One is part of a local Home Hardware store and the other has Sporting Goods and is a Purolator agent. Both sell name brand bikes, Norco and Giant respectively. Surprisingly, the owner of the Giant shop told me last week that if someone in our area orders a Giant online he gets credit for the sale and a payment. He feels the company is being very fair. I had already sold all of last years rebuilt bikes including a lovely root beer Sports and have sold a Sekine step through last week. I have three more for sale but one will be shown today.
When at the Giant shop (ex CCM and Raleigh) I picked up these goodies with my tire purchases.
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Old 04-05-21, 09:43 AM
  #24236  
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This is my Tourist. My first Raleigh and my first 3-speed. From the markings on the hub, it looks like a 1974.
I was on a long-term assignment down in Melbourne, FL, and the hotel I stayed at was only about 1 mile from where I was working. As I knew i was going to be there for quite a while, I got on Craigslist and found this advertised. I'd always had a secret longing for a three speed, so this fit the bill perfectly. Everything was original, but the saddle and tires had dry-rotted away, so new tires and a new Brooks saddle. A new chain, it was ready to go. I absolutely love the "Patina" just enough rust and discoloration. I use this bike now to make runs to the store, and local restaurants for takeout. Great bike to ride, so comfortable, but I sure wouldn't want to do any hill work on it!

And, yes, I do know that the headlamp is in the wrong place, but I haven't been able to find a bracket to attach it.
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Old 04-05-21, 11:10 AM
  #24237  
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Originally Posted by Ghostknife View Post
Question for you English 3 speed Guru’s. I have the original seat bag for the Sports but both leather straps for closing the top were brittle and broke off.

Is it worth it to get some new straps sewn on or just get a new bag?
The suggestion to bring it to a shoe shop is a great one! I did that with a bag of mine and it turned out great. They used the original buckles- the bag looks great.

Originally Posted by FSOG Rich View Post

This is my Tourist. My first Raleigh and my first 3-speed. From the markings on the hub, it looks like a 1974.
I was on a long-term assignment down in Melbourne, FL, and the hotel I stayed at was only about 1 mile from where I was working. As I knew i was going to be there for quite a while, I got on Craigslist and found this advertised. I'd always had a secret longing for a three speed, so this fit the bill perfectly. Everything was original, but the saddle and tires had dry-rotted away, so new tires and a new Brooks saddle. A new chain, it was ready to go. I absolutely love the "Patina" just enough rust and discoloration. I use this bike now to make runs to the store, and local restaurants for takeout. Great bike to ride, so comfortable, but I sure wouldn't want to do any hill work on it!

And, yes, I do know that the headlamp is in the wrong place, but I haven't been able to find a bracket to attach it.
You can change the rear sprocket from the stock to something larger, like 22 teeth and it will do reasonably well on hills. You'll have to lengthen the chain slightly and that might require a new chain unless you can find the right kind of chain from a junk bin. You don't have a chaincase so you could go a tad larger to a 23 tooth (your gear ratio is slightly higher on account of the larger wheel diameter of the rod-brake machines). Alternatively there are 44-tooth cranks.

It would be a good idea to service the bearings in the crankset (you'll need a cotter pin press to do this right, but they are not crazy money; see https://www.bikesmithdesign.com/CotterPress/ ) and headset. They have probably not been lubricated since 1974. This probably goes for the hub bearings as well. There are new brake pads available that stop far better, and the brake levers are made of soft steel and over time, bend a bit upwards with use, causing you to loose braking power. You can fix that by gripping the lever at its hinge point on the handlebar with one hand (this is to prevent you from putting too much pressure on the hinge and separating it from the bar) and carefully bending the brake lever down with the other hand, so that you have greater travel of the lever.
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Old 04-05-21, 11:22 AM
  #24238  
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Originally Posted by Salubrious View Post

You can change the rear sprocket from the stock to something larger, like 22 teeth and it will do reasonably well on hills.

It would be a good idea to service the bearings in the crankset .
Thanks, Salubrious. As I am now in AZ (Phoenix area), there really is not much in the of hills, and when I do hills, I use a different bike.

The first thing I did after buying the bike off of Craigslist was take it to a bike shop that had a mechanic that really knew his stuff and had the bike gone over and lubed, etc. So it's in good shape.

Bob's Bicycle in Melbourne, FL, if your interested. Can't recommend them more highly! The staff at Bob's treated me very well. In fact, the few times I took the Raleigh into the shop, the mechanic would come out and talk to me and tell me how much he enjoyed working on the bike.
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Old 04-05-21, 12:32 PM
  #24239  
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Originally Posted by browngw View Post
Both of our small town local shops are having problems getting stock as well. Fortunately they have survived this long by being part of a diversified business and will survive. One is part of a local Home Hardware store and the other has Sporting Goods and is a Purolator agent. Both sell name brand bikes, Norco and Giant respectively. Surprisingly, the owner of the Giant shop told me last week that if someone in our area orders a Giant online he gets credit for the sale and a payment. He feels the company is being very fair. I had already sold all of last years rebuilt bikes including a lovely root beer Sports and have sold a Sekine step through last week. I have three more for sale but one will be shown today.
When at the Giant shop (ex CCM and Raleigh) I picked up these goodies with my tire purchases.
Around here all the 'real' bike shops have closed up, there hasn't been a Giant, Trek, Raleigh, or any name brand dealer here in at least 10 years now. They all either went bankrupt or retired. There's one shop that opened up about 5 years ago,, they don't sell parts, don't do repairs and they sell department store bikes and one line of 'over $3k road bikes. The next nearest dealer is an hour away and its the kind of shop I just never felt welcome in if you know what I mean.They seem to despise do it yourself types and hate to order parts. They have a full inventory of new bikes, but most are pretty high dollar bikes, nothing under $600 on the racks with most being over a grand.

I think its got a lot to do with why you don't see bikes on the street here. No one I know rides a bike, most don't know how, which is something I have a real hard time understanding because when I grew up in the 60's and early 70's every kid had a bike, sometimes two or three. No one I grew up with didn't know how to ride a bike.
On my road here, I have two older guys who collect and fix old bikes as a hobby and for spare cash, but no one else here even owns a bike, and I've been told more than once by neighbors they don't understand why a grown man would mess around with bikes, bikes are for kids. There's at least a dozen houses with kids, none own a bike or have any interest in getting one. When they get older, they have no interest in driving a car or getting a license either. This isn't an area where you can walk places either, the nearest store is 5 miles away, Its mostly rural and outskirts of the suburbs here.

I don't think its a matter of it being the type of bike because newer stuff don't sell either. There's a guy about 10 miles from me here who bought up a container of adult 'Walmart' bikes last summer, he got the whole lot cheap, as Walmart bikes go, they were decent models, mostly beach cruisers, IGH hub models and a few comfort type bikes. Most were Mongoose or Schwinn branded. He did the assembly himself and listed them two or three at a time. He was listing them for $50 each, all brand new,
He listed on CL and in one free paper that gets delivered to every resident here, I talked to him last week and he said he was surprised that he's only sold two bikes all year. He gets no calls, and those who do call want the bikes for half of what he's asking. Most want him to ship them, which he won't do. The shipping would be as much as the bike is worth or more.
He gave me two bikes because they wouldn't sell, both are single speed road bikes. They were new in the box. I took the time to assemble one of them, and found the two biggest issues with the bike were that the factory didn't use any grease or lube in the bike at all, and the frame was really heavy for its size, but fit and finish otherwise were fine. It was on par with most 60's and 70's American bikes like Columbia or Rollfast. It had three piece cranks, a threaded BB, with steel crank arms and chainring, the single speed freewheel was decent and from a known manufacturer of BMX parts, the wheels were alloy with SS spokes. The tires were crap, completely unbranded with tubes that wouldn't even hold air over night. I replaced the tires and tubes with a $50 pair of decent road bike tires and name brand tubes. After proper lube and assembly the bike isn't bad. Its a bit heavy but no more so than an old Varsity or any of these English three speeds we all have here. I suspect the second bike will be the same but that one is a beach cruiser, similar to an old Schwinn. I would have never gone out and paid money for any such bike but with proper assembly and care it went together just fine. I've also considered installing an AW hub in it since its got two 40 spoke 700C rims.

He's does pretty much the same with that same model when he lists them, he tosses the cheap tires and tubes and installs which ever tire he was able to find for a good price and lubes the whole bike properly. He had listed most under a $100. When they were last sold in the stores about two years ago they were $189.99.
He's 20 minutes from the shore, and lists a lot of beach cruisers, but in the last two years, none have sold. The one he gave me is a Huffy Santa Fe coaster brake model in red. I think he's got like 30 of them in all. He bought a 40 ft shipping container that was abandoned for some reason at auction. It was full of bikes,
He's at the point now that he's ready to just scrap the majority of them and just use the container for a shed. He owned a bike shop many years ago but sold it in the 80's and took a 9-5 type job with a pension. He's had a few people offer to just buy the whole lot for nearly nothing, I think the one guy was trying to buy them all for $200. I think he'd dig a hole and bury them before he did that.

One of the problems I see here with any bike shop is that store front rent is insane. the average storefront costs $10k/mo, plus licenses and some insanely expensive liability insurance, and then you sell only one or two low end bikes a month. Certainly not a good recipe for any business.
Buying a retail location is out of the question as well, with most highway locations here selling for upwards of $900k or more, with extremely high property taxes. Small businesses don't stand a chance. I'm even surprised that the few places we have left are still here, with a year of basically no income, I don't know how they covered their rent or mortgages for all this time. They will likely never recover or make up what they lost if they survive at all.
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Old 04-05-21, 12:36 PM
  #24240  
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
I've had a least a half dozen of these brighter greens from the 70's. This pic shows the colour best in my mind's eye.
I think that's still mostly derivative of the '60s Bronze Green, even if it's a different shade. This is the later "Emerald Green" I was thinking of. Can't tell if it's the same color as the aforementioned Superbe.



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Old 04-05-21, 03:03 PM
  #24241  
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
I think that's still mostly derivative of the '60s Bronze Green, even if it's a different shade. This is the later "Emerald Green" I was thinking of. Can't tell if it's the same color as the aforementioned Superbe.



-Kurt
That looks about right.
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Old 04-05-21, 03:09 PM
  #24242  
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Originally Posted by browngw View Post
Both of our small town local shops are having problems getting stock as well. Fortunately they have survived this long by being part of a diversified business and will survive. One is part of a local Home Hardware store and the other has Sporting Goods and is a Purolator agent. Both sell name brand bikes, Norco and Giant respectively. Surprisingly, the owner of the Giant shop told me last week that if someone in our area orders a Giant online he gets credit for the sale and a payment. He feels the company is being very fair. I had already sold all of last years rebuilt bikes including a lovely root beer Sports and have sold a Sekine step through last week. I have three more for sale but one will be shown today.
When at the Giant shop (ex CCM and Raleigh) I picked up these goodies with my tire purchases.
I always like to have a good supply of cotter pins on hand.
I could use a pump valve as well!
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Old 04-05-21, 03:37 PM
  #24243  
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Acorn Bags

Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
For a small, barrel-type bag, I use the Banjo Brothers Minnehaha canvas barrel bag. The Minnehaha has a hard plastic interior liner that is kind of a half-log shape that prevents it from getting too deformed. It's good for an afternoon ride type thing - wallet, keys, cellphone, etc. It won't hold a ton of stuff, but it's enough for me to go riding for a couple hours on a nice day. I have one bike with a Carradice "Zipped Roll" bag, which is a little bigger but similar sort of thing. It's a better bag, but it's also more expensive. I like both.
Carradice make great bags. Another option is the lovely cottage industry out of California - Acorn Bags. They nicely compliment English bicycles. But, their inventory goes FAST once they restock.
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Old 04-05-21, 07:12 PM
  #24244  
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Seeing as things get lost in ISO, and since this thread is right up the alley of this subject, would anyone happen to have one or a pair of decent Sturmey AW drivers? I've had two FW rebuild projects stagnating because of these thrashed ones:



I know the left one isn't half bad, but I'm trying to do the hub quite nicely:



-Kurt
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Old 04-05-21, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
The 1970s-era vinyl bags are a nice accessory to have for completeness, but as bags go, they're kind of mediocre. If you could get it fixed conveniently, do it because it's nice to have original stuff around. Don't be afraid to change bags though if it gives you trouble. In the luxury range, I prefer a Carradice bag, and in the more budget range, I like Banjo Brothers canvas bags.

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Old 04-05-21, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by paulb_in_bkln View Post
I've noted this before, but here in Glorious NYC $120 wouldn't get you the one.
From what I've seen here, that only seems to hold true for NYC and maybe the other big cities. I saw a slight increase for a bit about a year ago but it died out fast and now nothing sells at all. There's plenty of bikes for sale and the shops that I've been to are overstocked because they over bought due to all this talk about a bike boom. I was at one shop today and they had at least 50 bikes waiting to get put together. A few shops have gone to stocking different brands than they usually would, even if they're department store bikes
Walmart here also dropped adult bikes, but that began long before the pandemic, the started piling bike items in the clearance isles 3 or 4 years ago. Now they have nothing but small bikes with training wheels. No parts, no tires, just small bikes.
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Old 04-06-21, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by barnfind View Post
From what I've seen here, that only seems to hold true for NYC and maybe the other big cities.
The situation that you and oldspokes have described is pretty consistent with what I've read in other places. Bike advocacy Twitter, BikesnobNYC, Peter Walker in the UK, they all note that few kids ride their bikes to school anymore and lots of kids have no interest in bikes at all. I think it's a shame, for several reasons (health, fitness, happiness, feeling of independence) but when I leave the city and see how the surrounding counties are laid out, traffic-wise, I don't see how you can use a bike to get around. The commercial corridors that have all the businesses and stores and sometimes schools are often four-lane roads with fast heavy traffic, and no room for someone on a bike. Route 9 upstate here, for example, in the vicinity of Poughkeepsie, or Rte 110 in Suffolk county. Now in NYC it's an interesting difference: many inner city kids have rediscovered bikes in a big way and in their own original fashion have started "rideouts" with 10 or 20 kids going on joyrides together, whooping and hollering, popping wheelies, and in general mildly misbehaving and outraging middle class prigs (like me). I took the subway home from the north Bronx a couple weeks ago because I didn't feel like the 20 mile ride back back to Brooklyn, me and my bike at the back of the last car, and a couple stops into my ride three teenage boys got on with their fat tire bikes and spent the ride into midtown with one boy describing to his friends the details of the purple metallic fade paint job he'd done on his bike. I was eavesdropping myself for tips!

My local LBS guy is a longtime Jamis dealer, and although he's no longer interested in selling new bikes (his overhead is low and he does fine with repairs), he did ask could he get bikes if he needed a few and he was told, no, with supply constrained, only the shops placing big orders are being served. He used to fix up old bikes for sale, but now the supply of cheap old bikes has dried up, too. Yeah, it's quite different here.
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Old 04-06-21, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Seeing as things get lost in ISO, and since this thread is right up the alley of this subject, would anyone happen to have one or a pair of decent Sturmey AW drivers? I've had two FW rebuild projects stagnating because of these thrashed ones:



I know the left one isn't half bad, but I'm trying to do the hub quite nicely:



-Kurt
I might have a couple. I'll look.
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Old 04-06-21, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
I might have a couple. I'll look.
Thank you, thank you! PM me if something works out.

-Kurt
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Old 04-06-21, 09:44 AM
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Is there any consensus on how bad the races on the drivers have to be to basically dump them? I've got a pair of drivers that look kind of like the one on the left in Kurt's picture. They're not pristine, but I hesitate to trash them. I mean, how much do the driver races really slow down the hub? I've never been clear on that. The bearing balls I see no problem replacing because I can just order a tray of bearing balls in bulk and replace as needed, but the drivers are a purpose-made part and I hate tossing them.

Same with the cones, though my experience is cones tend to go bad faster than the drivers and hub cups.
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