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Archived: English Roadsters

AGE / VALUE:   Hercules - Birmingham, England posted by: Gralyn on 5/12/2001 at 7:23:49 PM
I have an old Hercules...from Birmingham, England. The old man I bought it from said it dated back to the 1920's. I don't know how much of the bicycle is original....The serial number on the frame is 1728157. How could a person determine it's date of manufacture?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Hercules - Birmingham, England posted by Gralyn on 5/12/2001 at 7:47:37 PM
It has 26" tires.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Hercules - Birmingham, England posted by ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 5/13/2001 at 10:01:16 AM
What happened to the serial number charts for Hercules? We don't have it here or anywhere else on the net. At least not yet. I think it is cool that you have this asa it is origonal Hercules and from the 20's too! Prewar even. Enjoy!
A more detailed look at Hercules is in order.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Hercules - Birmingham, England posted by ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 5/13/2001 at 10:06:39 AM
I have a green rod brake model that is Origonal Hercules and the badge is silver(alloy) and it is very thick whereas the Raleigh ones are silver with green paint on the H and the badge is very thin. There is a diffrence in lugs too.

AGE / VALUE:   Sprite overhaul(yes, another one) posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/12/2001 at 8:28:06 AM
Most of the bikes I find and overhaul have never had it done since they were new. I never find newer grease anywhere in these bikes. bearings are dry, bottom bracket bearings are stiff and barely turn. Chains are long gone, gears need soaking and major cleaning but with some attention soon everything is working smoothly. After getting past the evil cotter pins I get into the fun part the bottombracket. It takes some time but having everything working like new is cool. Finding a rear reflector where I can get the bolt undone and therefore being able to put it on another bike is great.A lot of the times these bolts rust solid.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Sprite overhaul(yes, another one) posted by Tom on 5/13/2001 at 3:41:57 AM
I agree with you, over 30 bikes in the last 2 months and only 2 that were serviced properly. Some had sand in the bb and most had no grease. Most people that ride bikes don't know about maintaining a bike.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Sprite overhaul(yes, another one) posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/13/2001 at 10:21:40 AM
I would think they would look down at it one day and get tired of the way the cables look and tire of the way it handles and turns and sit down with a 5.00 book from a used bookstore and maintain it.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Sprite overhaul(yes, another one) posted by Ben on 5/15/2001 at 9:11:25 AM
Would you all agree that most folks don't have the aptitude or fortitude for this? Then there are the people who as children, learned to amintain their bikes from the moment their parents would let them touch tools.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Sprite overhaul(yes, another one) posted by Dale Oswald on 5/16/2001 at 10:14:29 AM
When I went away to college, I took my toolbox. Everybody asked why I had a toolbox at school. Next week they were at the door asking, "Can I borrow a screwdriver?"

When my (bike salesperson/mechanic) daughter went away to school, she took her toolbox...

AGE / VALUE:   ANYBODY COULD HELP ME WITH THE YEAR? posted by: Mario Romano on 5/11/2001 at 4:03:27 PM
I have an Humber made english roadster and I will give you more informations about it. If you could help to find the year it was manufactured, I will be sincerely happy...
Well, my bike have 28" tires front and rear, 3-speed on hub, rod brakes front and rear, original saddle seat, a fork with two tiny tubes by side (two bladed or bifurcated?), total chain cover, and a lock sited behind the saddle (lock the rear tire), it´s an export model for Brazil and his serial number begins with a "B" letter. In the hub, we see: "A TYPE 1 - HERCULES CYCLES AND MOTORS - BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND", the gearshift lever is "Sturmey Archer". The paint (black) and everything in the bike is original and a friend already told me it could be an Humber Cobb Tourist model. Somebody could told me the model and probably year of this bike?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   ANYBODY COULD HELP ME WITH THE YEAR? posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/12/2001 at 8:06:37 AM
I do not see how wer can determine the year it was made. The serial number chart we currently have does not cover Humber. It least I do not think so. The Hercules Hubs had a variety of stampings like B type four and so on. Yours perhaps is an earlier one. This style fork makes it more interseting and perhaps valuable. This is a nice machine! These are not being made or copied anywhere today. I have exploded diagrams I can send to you,and we have some here at Oldroads.com under Raleigh, Rudge, Humber exploded diagrams.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   ANYBODY COULD HELP ME WITH THE YEAR? posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/12/2001 at 8:46:51 AM
Come to think of it, I have not seen any catalog literature with these shown. It would be nice to one day have some Humber sales literature showing the various Humber models. I will have to keep my eye out for it. Colors were black, a luscious royal blue, a Robins egg blue on the ladies frame models and perhaps other colors I have not seen yet. If you bend the steer tube on these Humber bikes do not throw away the fork because unlike a Raleigh fork with their tubular fork crown the Humber fork can be repaired by a competent framebuilder. I had a steer tube replaced and it is good as new. Furthermore, the frame builder enjoyed doing the job!
These had special rod brake clips for the fork.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   NY Service for Rudge? posted by: Susan on 5/11/2001 at 3:53:31 PM
I have a ladies Rudge with a 1964 Sturmley-Archer AW hub that I rescued off a garbage pile two years ago. I haven't ridden it and it needs a tuneup before I try.
Does anyone know of a shop in the Westchester Rockland Putnam Poughkeepsie Danbury NY/CT area that can service this bike knowledgably? Thanks for any info. Susan

AGE / VALUE:   531 db Dunelt posted by: Albert on 5/11/2001 at 12:12:58 PM
I recently obtained a db 531 Dunelt fram and would appreciate hearing from anyone with knowledge of such machines. I t seems odd that a "b" grade brand from TI would be so constructed. Could it be that Dunelt had an existance before being purchased and that I have a pre-purchase specimen? Or, could this cycle have been made at Raleigh's Carlton workshop. The frame has semi-wrap-around rear stays and had been equiped with Campy gearing and Williams cranks. I plan to configure it as a 1950's clubman using an SA hub and contemporary alloy components. Cheers!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   531 db Dunelt posted by Warren on 5/11/2001 at 9:49:40 PM
It is roundly accepted that all Dunelts were B-grade and it's a bit of a myth.. That may be the case when Raleigh took it over, sometime in the late fifties. Previous to that, their bikes were completely up to snuff, as far as sport bikes and roadsters go. At least mine is. Having said that, your bike is an anomoly to me. The wrap around seat stays were common to many of the seventies "Records" and their ilk. Not to be confused with anything like a double butted 531. Or am I out to lunch here? And wasn't there an odd Dunelt on e-bay lately with a mish-mash of componentry on it? This could be it's not so distant cousin, sporting a Williams crank and Campag gear.

Club bike sounds good.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   531 db Dunelt posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/12/2001 at 8:50:25 AM
A much closer, more exact,look at "The deal with Dunelt" is needed.
I think whomever built this one thought good of the Dunelt name because they chose it over other names like Raleigh,Humber or Rudge.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   rod braked bikes posted by: Esteban del Rio on 5/11/2001 at 8:16:28 AM
I have a Raleigh Sports and a 72 Phillips, but I don't know much about rod-braked bikes. My brother has a Tourist with a SA hub dated 81 - when did Raleigh stop making these models? Also, do all rod-braked bikes have 28" rims? Or is this a case of "no necessary correspondence"?
This discussion area is quite a resource! I've enjoyed riding my english bikes for several years. I'm not into restoration work -- these bikes constitute my means of transportation! Anyway, if anyone has info, thanks in advance

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   rod braked bikes posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/11/2001 at 9:32:10 AM
These were stoped being brought into the states in 1980. Production stoped in England in 1987. Bikes with rod brakes were the Winkie childs tricycle, a 24 inch wheel, 26 inch wheel and the 28 inch wheel model was made. Raleigh stoped making the 26 inch wheel rod brake bike way before they stoped the 28 inch Raleigh Roadster. When they stoped the 26 inch wheel machines I do not know.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   MS 150 posted by: Bruce on 5/10/2001 at 7:45:10 PM
Greetings, My wife has mentioned more than once that I liked to tinker with my bike but hardly ride it. So when a group from work mentioned the MS 150 ride for last weekend I decided to go for it. I had a ball, the food was great, the band was great, I didn't camp out as i thought for sure it would rain, also I was afraid after 88 miles in a day I needed a soft bed, the second day we went the final 62 miles on hilly terrain. I took my 59 Raleigh Superbe with the 4 speed, and it turned out it was all the gears I really needed. I recently had the back gear changed to 20 teeth for the hills and it was good that I did. I put a few drops of oil in the hub and a few for the shifter and had no problems at all except the bullet on the front fender rattled on the bumps so I put a piece of tape on it. I am very happy with this bike, I felt like we were one machine after I got rolling.I was tentative as the farthest I've ever gone in a day was 30 or so miles. I'm afraid I'm hooked now, but worse things could happen couldn't they?

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Warren on 5/11/2001 at 6:33:26 AM
You did 150 miles on a Superbe 4-speed?

Bruce, you the MAN!

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/11/2001 at 5:05:42 PM
That's the response I got from the other cyclists, I was the only rider on an "upright" bike.I kept a moderate pace averaging 13 m.p.h. the first day and just over 12 m.p.h. the second day ( it was pretty hilly. I'm looking for a 7 speed roadster type. I hear Kettler makes one, I may end up with a new one for these longer rides. I'm going to start training for the "Hotter than hell" ride in August in Wichita Falls Tx., they claim they have over 8,000 riders on this one.

   RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Walt on 5/11/2001 at 8:45:17 PM
I assume the 150 was Houston to Austin, I did it a lot when I was in Texas and my hat is off for doing it on a four speed, particularly the second day through the park. Hotter than Hell is flat but it is windy and hot and yes there are 8000+ riders. Have fun and maybe I'll see you there.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/12/2001 at 6:51:10 AM
I rode the MS 150 Red River Challenge-Denton to Lake Texoma-with the overnight at Lake Texoma. I think I better do some preparing for the one in Wichita Falls as I've been in Texas for 4 years and still haven't gotten used to the extreme heat-maybe I'll see you on the ride.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by JOEL on 5/17/2001 at 2:28:56 PM
Did you pass a guy on a Phantom?

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/19/2001 at 7:48:02 PM
I'm not sure if I passed a Phantom or not, every time i came to a long hill I tried to look at the countryside to get my mind off the road ahead, I had the bike with a large Schwinn bag hanging off the seat, I brought extra inner tubes etc. thinking they might be short of my size. I did take the pump and the battery tube off to lighten the load, but in hindsight I don't think it made much difference really. I caught my picture coming across the bridge on the first day (85 miles) I'm going to keep a copy for my incentive to get back into shape, I'm 25 lbs overweight in this picture, and need to lose it for the upcoming ride in Wichita in August. I'm on the MS150.com under the timeframe of 5 to 5:15 picture 21 of 22. There is a group of us riding on the collin classic in June, I'll take the Raleigh Superbe again, as it's my only bike at this time anyway. Does anyone know anything of Kettler bikes, I spotted a 7 speed touring bike on their site, are they quality bikes etc.? I'd love to have a 7 speed touring bike, although I'm happy with the 4 speed.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/19/2001 at 7:54:01 PM
Correction: that site for the picture of the bike is ms150.org

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/19/2001 at 7:57:45 PM
Correction: that site for the picture of the bike is ms150.org

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: MS 150 posted by Bruce on 5/19/2001 at 7:58:58 PM
Correction: that site for the picture of the bike is ms150.org

WANTED:   Looking for RALEIGH SPORTS, MENS, posted by: rich on 5/10/2001 at 7:00:21 PM
looking to buy a raleigh sports for my dad who is 6'1".

must be in excellent condition and from 1955-65. preferrably black.

will pay cash.

please email me directly at


ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Chrome Raleigh pixx posted by: Jeff on 5/10/2001 at 7:16:02 AM
I finally got some newer pictures of it posted on the readers' pages.

FOR SALE:   ladies Raleigh Superbe posted by: Jim on 5/10/2001 at 7:02:44 AM
Locking fork w/ 2 original keys, Dynohub, Brooks B-72 saddle, very complete & original w/ exception of rear wheel, original hub was stamped '69. Raleigh pattern rims, forest green, good chrome, average paint, a few small dings in the mudguards, picture to be posted on my reader's web page "Retrocycles" on Sunday. $130

WANTED:   Odd tire size needed posted by: Brian Hayes on 5/9/2001 at 8:16:05 PM
Sorry for this non-English question, but you folks are the experts for a lot of other bikes, too it seems. I just picked up a Mercier small-wheeled bike with 400A (37-340) tires. This size is not even listed at Sheldon's Harris Cyclery site. Anybody know where I might find a set?



   RE:WANTED:   Odd tire size needed posted by Brian Hayes on 5/9/2001 at 8:43:30 PM
Never mind! I found them available from St. John Street Cycles in the UK.


   RE:RE:WANTED:   Odd tire size needed posted by Norman F. Birnberg on 5/9/2001 at 9:57:08 PM
Brian, the size is listed at Harris Cyclery: the French 400A size was made for small wheeled European Juvenile bikes. If you haven't seen specific tires in the size listed at Harris Cyclery, its because Sheldon Brown hasn't had the time to get all the sizes up on the web yet. It would be a good idea to phone or e-mail him in the future so he can help you get what you're looking for.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Any visual resources for 1920-30 Raleighs? posted by: Tamara on 5/9/2001 at 5:20:58 PM
Hi all!

Does anyone happen to know of any information -- photos, drawings, websites, etc. -- that features Raleigh bicycles from the 1920s and 30s? I have acquired what looks to be a late 20s to early 30s women's roadster and have been scouring the web and local libraries for information. No success yet, so I figured I'd go to the experts. :)

Incidentally, the k-7 hub indicates the 1930s, but the serial number on the frame under the saddle starts with AB, which would date it more to the mid 1920s...

I realize dating these bikes from this era is more of art than a science, but it's fun to play gumshoe and do some investigating. :)

Any suggestions or urls you can provide would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks much!


AGE / VALUE:   Thomas Wasdell Mudguards posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/8/2001 at 5:51:38 PM
Somre of these mudguards I have were made by Thomas Wasdell L.T.D. Farm Street Birmingham, England. These are a brand and style of mudguards I have neder seen before. What did these go on? What brand of bike? What happened to this company? I have never heard of them before. Raleigh and Phillips made their mudguards in house. They are nice and are in wrappings, they take a wire type stay.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Thomas Wasdell Mudguards posted by Warren on 5/8/2001 at 8:09:15 PM
Funny thing Christopher...I just picked up some post-war, NOS CCM mudguards made by the Birmingham Mudguard Co. Ltd on Tame Rd in Birmingham. I guess CCM started to import them from England...they use the solid stamped steel stays with rivets. Great quality. I guess this serves to reinforce how enormous the bicycle industry was in England. Have you seen the size of the Raleigh plant on the Sturmey Archer 50 years comemorative page via Sheldons site?
For instance, I've seen many Raleigh made frames, rebadged with Canadian names...Supercycle and Glider come to mind. Yet these bikes never have the identical peripherals ie; fenders, reflectors, grips. It seems likely that Raleigh sourced this stuff out, if not because of production capacity but it would also maintain brand identity. I've got a beautiful men's Supercycle single speed roadster with bent top tube and unusual oversized steel fenders but I've never seen anything comparable in the Raleigh lineup from the period. It's not like the "generic" marketing we see these days where the identical product is labelled "no-name"...marketed on a massive scale at reduced prices. How many companies could survive making just mudguards today.

   "Favorit" alloy mudguards made in Czech posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 5/10/2001 at 10:10:03 AM
Perhaps one day I will learn what these go on. These appear to be for a 26 inch wheel bike. Nice but I do not like the stay arrangement.

AGE / VALUE:   German roadester posted by: sam on 5/8/2001 at 8:30:30 AM
I like the paint job on this bike ebay #1142665226 (not mine etc.)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   German roadester posted by Oscar on 5/8/2001 at 12:19:38 PM
Very nice. I like the firehat on the front fender, too.

FOR SALE:   Raleigh RSW 16" posted by: degallina on 5/7/2001 at 9:12:00 PM
Check out this really nice original condition Raleigh for sale on eBay!