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Archived: English Roadsters

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Hercules posted by: John B. on 6/13/2001 at 4:36:18 AM
Recently picked up a Hercules (s.n. 712942) at a yard sale. Typical black with white chevron on the rear fender. Has AMF marking on the chain guard. Guess I just felt sorry for this one and had to drag it home. Also figured it was time for an English roadster in my collection. I've had others but they were girls' bikes. Finally found a mens' frame. 3-speed is messed up but I have another good rear wheel. Will make a nice rider. My questions are... Who actually made the bike? When did AMF get into the act? Any idea on age? is it worth anything more than the fun I'll have riding it?

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Hercules posted by Ed on 6/13/2001 at 6:13:26 AM
Hercules was acquired by Raleigh in 1960.The year and month of manufacture should be embossed on the rear hub if the hub is Sturmy Archer.I have heard that pre-Raleigh Hercules had the name spelled out on the chain ring,however I have not seen this.The two 1960s era Hercules I own have Notingham England on them and are aluminum. I have been advised that the original Hercules were where made in Birmingham and had a brass head badge.I'am not aware of a ser.# chart for Hercules so the ser.# does not help me in aging the bike.There is more info on Hercules on Cycle de Oro and I beleive on Sheldon Brown"s Sight. also there are pictures of 1960s and 70s era Hercules on Readers Web Pages this sight under Retrocycles. Good Luck With your Hercules.

FOR SALE:   Raleigh Sprite27 5 speed-Raleigh Sports posted by: Tom on 6/12/2001 at 6:53:02 PM
Raleigh Sprite 27, Tall frame, S/A 5 speed, Brooks B72 saddle w/lg. tool bag, rear spring rack, front light and odometer. Bike is in remarkable condtion! Raleigh Sports, peaked fenders, S/A three speed, Brooks "Matress saddle". This bike is in wonderful shape(albeit,not as nice as the Sprite 27!). I have lots of pics....email if interested. Excepting offers!

   RE-Raleigh Sports & Sprite posted by Tom on 6/17/2001 at 6:16:11 AM
Esteban....I've tried several times to mail you requested pics, but your email address does not work....

MISC:   Cable durability posted by: Albert on 6/12/2001 at 10:23:01 AM
A few thoughts about cable durability: In the 1950's lightroadster brake durability was just awful. These cables seemed to break after a hundred miles or so. At 39-cents a cable, the breakage was more than just an anoyance--- that 39-cents felt like 4-dollars fells today. Today's cables rarely break; mine seem to last for three to four thousend miles. Does anyone know what changes in manufacturing account for this increased durability? At any rate, it is easy to understand why cycles with rod-brakes were popular in underdeveloped and impoverished countries where 39-cents would be seen as a significant sum.

   RE:MISC:   Cable durability posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 6/12/2001 at 5:50:08 PM
I think Albert has a good point. A inner tube was not replaced but rather patched and often many times over until the tube had 8 or 10 patches in it. Today a cable has a plastic type coating on it to guard against rust and to make it easier to glide through the cable housing. I have a article from 1959 Cycling and it gives a brief description and photos of the Phillips factory. The article describes the many bobbins that wound cotton around the metal cable housing skeleton, but no mention is made about the cable itself. Today all cable housing is plastic and I especially hate the white plastic housing that comes with replacement cable. Give me waterproofed cotton any day with new cable inside.
If you were depending on the bike to get you to work and back every day (as many, many people did) and a cable broke or something else went awry you would feel difrently about it then like we do today. A great deal of things have changed, and someone in 1954 would find it astounding to hear how so many companies and models no longer exist. To tell someone that 25 years later many of the bicycle wheels would be 28 inch or a 700 C variation. Not just the old Raleigh rod brake type wheel but a whole new type of wheel and all the new tires and materials. A lot has changed in the cycle shop.

AGE / VALUE:   Roadster/import/midweight/?? posted by: Gary M on 6/11/2001 at 8:07:03 AM
i have a Standard brand bike. Lugged cantilever frame. 26x1.38 tires. drop center rims. single speed hub. was told
it was a 1958 from the guy i bought it from. Brown color, has feathers painted on it, looks sort of western. Has aluminum fenders, aluminum crown cover on fork. has a Delta light from the 40s on the handlebar, and a Delta torpedo backwards on the rear fender. Nice riding bike. anyone seen one?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Roadster/import/midweight/?? posted by sam on 6/11/2001 at 12:05:15 PM
I got one too,I think they were Dutch bikes but not sure.

AGE / VALUE:   Huret deraileurs instead of Cyclo/ Benelux posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 6/10/2001 at 10:55:46 AM
I was told this weekend that I can use a basic Huret Deraileur with the Cyclo 3 cog setup on a Sturmey- Archer 3 or 4 speed hub.The Huret can accept 1/8 chain without any tinkering to it. I have Huret deraileurs and shifters and I will have to try this out and see.
I told a pal that I had found a Cyclo and I was going to use this N.O.S piece and he took the joy out of it by telling me to sell it instead and use a Huret.

It is possible that the Huret is more durable than the Cyclo and parts are easier to get. Jim C.of Cyclart in Vista Ca has a list of things for sale and you can get these Cyclo cogs from Jim. Mine was $30.00 for the cog but that was awhile ago. Sheldon Brown has a article about one of his hybrid gearing projects on his web page. http://www.Sheldonbrown.com

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Huret deraileurs instead of Cyclo/ Benelux posted by Sheldon Brown on 6/11/2001 at 5:52:35 PM
Yes, the Hurét will work with 1/8 chain, but not with a master link. I used this setup in the early '60s. The Hurét replaced the Cyclo Benelux Mark VII that came with the conversion kit. It constituted a rather considerable upgrade, worked a lot better, though I found it took quite while to get used to shifting in the opposite direction. I had to hacksaw the cable slot in the Benelux shift lever to a smaller diameter to make it work with the shorter-travel Hurét derailer.

The Alvit was hot stuff in 1960, the first affordable parallelogram derailer. Those who got into cycling in the mid-'70s bike boom tend to sneer at it, and by 1975 it had been far surpassed by Simplex, which in turn was far surpassed when Sun Tour and Shimano came on the scene.

WANTED:   PHILLIPS FRONT FENDER ORNAMENT posted by: Brian on 6/9/2001 at 10:34:49 PM
I need a front fender tip (ornament) for a 50's Phillips. Also a pair of ladies handgrips for same bike.

   RE:WANTED:   PHILLIPS FRONT FENDER ORNAMENT posted by Cal on 6/12/2001 at 5:00:39 AM
The fender tip from almost any Raleigh, Dunelt, Robin Hood, Hercules, etc etc will work, too.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   broken axle posted by: kimo on 6/9/2001 at 8:12:20 AM
On my way home, a young woman in cut-offs and roadbike breezed by me. So I started to really push the DL-1 and catch her up. As I stood up on the pedals and began to pick up speed, a sickening crunch was felt and heard. I was locked up. No longer thinking much about the girl, I found the hub able to move...barely. I walked it back to the shop. A week later and I heard that the axel is broken. It is the coaster brake version. Thinking in the chinese way, is there an opportunity that this problem offers. I know I need the coaster brake, city traffic demands it. What alternatives are there? Any thoughts? Mahalo!

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   broken axle posted by sam on 6/9/2001 at 5:24:16 PM
I like spring too! ----i think chistopher had some new S/A costers for sale---or you might find an old girls dumelt with a coster.You do need a 40 spoke hub ,right?

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   broken axle posted by Rodney K.. on 6/10/2001 at 4:36:38 AM
Pretty girls have destroyed lots of guys and their axles.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Lotsa bikes/American Roadster posted by: Warren on 6/8/2001 at 10:20:13 PM
I walked into my thrift store today and almost fainted. A pair of Superbes complete... a nice Sprite...a dirty1960 Sports in rough shape...a 70's Aprilia, (Italian) and as I stand there gawking the guy rolls up a decent clean Concorde road bike. I grabbed the womens Superbe (cuz it had a great B72), the Concorde and the Sports. Then I started thinking of how to explain to my wife. I'll offer her the Superbe.

I was disappointed when I found the Sports frame to be tweaked. So I stripped the parts and found that the rims were "SULLOY" aluminum 26 X 1 3/4 rims...32/40 holes front and back and they are Raleigh pattern as well. Huh? Very straight and they seem to be very high quality. Here's the plan.

It's the American roadster theme again with a twist. I've got a very clean early Dunelt frame that is of very good quality. It's stripped and primed. I've got alloy rims, an Ofmega 42 tooth crankset with a decent BB. A short Nitto stem with SR alloy North Road bars, Bluemel lightweight fenders and now I've got the light rims. I'm going to lace the rear rim to an NOS 40 hole vintage Solite track hub and leave the front wheel alone with it's Raleigh hub. All I need is an alloy seat post to go with the B72 seat and I think I'll have a righteous retro roadster that won't quit going up the hills. I'm going to take my time with this one. I think it will be interesting.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Lotsa bikes/American Roadster posted by Warren on 6/8/2001 at 10:22:55 PM
Sorry...26 X 1 3/8 rims.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Lotsa bikes/American Roadster posted by Jim on 6/13/2001 at 10:15:05 AM
I'm riding a lightweight very similar to what you describe. Triumph "Tenerife" alloy rims & seat post from Sheldon, 3+3 Cyclo cogs & Huret Allvit lever & derailleur, alloy GB stem & northroad bar from a late Sprite, alloy AW, and an SR alloy cottered crank. I have never ridden anything better.
Your concept is excellent. My only complaint is that the frame is a bit small at appx 21". I'd really like to transfer everything to a 23", but it would have to be a Triumph...we all have our foibles.

MISC:   Kettler bicycles posted by: Bruce on 6/8/2001 at 5:29:09 PM
Does anybody have any information on touring bikes made by Kettler? I hear they are a German made bike with many touring and city models. I have never seen one myself

   RE:MISC:   Kettler bicycles posted by Tim Powell on 6/9/2001 at 6:09:44 PM
Here is the link, http://www.kettler.net/e_frame_ie.html
Tim Powell.

MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by: Albert on 6/8/2001 at 4:27:02 AM
Has anyone information to share on the results of the Berto study of hub gear efficiency?

   RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Clyde on 6/8/2001 at 3:28:36 PM
I've been waiting for the results too. However, I must say that it appears to me that any efficiency in a derailleur set up is lost on 90% of the casual riders who never shift out of high gear (it was 100 in the old days of 52/14 for a 27-inch wheel)on their indexed ATB fat tired bikes while riding on city streets. Just how hard is it to shift any modern indexed system? OK, we three-speeders (5 or 7, too) have the advantage of shifting while stopped, so why doesn't everybody else join us with internal hub shifting?

On my 3-speed DL-1 clone, I passed many a stuck-in-high-gear derailleur-equipped bike rider on the recent 25-mile around the city BIKE NEW ORLEANS tour.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Albert on 6/9/2001 at 8:10:06 AM
Clyde, I share your views. Too bad that are not many cycles equiped with hub gears are available from retailers. New machines in the shops and sales people who know what they are talking about when it comes to hub gears would go far to increase a deserved popularity. Those of us who appreciate them, are forced to configure our own from components or obtain a machine several decades old.

   wish there was a market for 3-speeds posted by Gary M on 6/9/2001 at 9:38:16 AM
You tell me why nobody uses 3-speeds.. i cant give the things away. i must have 30 of them if not 50 in the back right now. vintage, etc, all working riders. in fact i donated rentals to Big Brothers and Big Sisters last year, and the people that couldnt afford bikes wouldnt use them free. they would rather walk 13 miles. I offered them clean used 10-speeds, same answer. they only wnated my high end used and new bikes for free. they walked.

   RE:3 speed vs. derailleur posted by GL on 6/9/2001 at 12:48:28 PM
I still say all the claims of great derailleur efficiency are bullshit and contrary to the laws of physics. And I would like to see how the 3 speeds would make out if lubed with the latest low friction synthetics, teflon etc.

   RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Robert N on 6/9/2001 at 3:30:08 PM
Forget about the efficiency of one versus the other. There are two factors at work that have nothing to do with efficiency. First is the kewl factor. A cartoonist once pointed out that in the 70's we were all artists and in the 90's we were all athletes. One does not appear athletic, therefore kewl on a bike with a 3 or 5-speed hub. The second factor is the fact that most people don't know what they really want or what best serves their needs. This goes hand in glove with the first factor. It is the same sort of business that causes folk to buy an SUV when what they really need is a Ford Escort.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Oscar on 6/10/2001 at 12:41:08 PM
I like to ride fast. A lycra dude passed me on his 27 gear road bike. I don't like being passed, so I took his wheel for 5 miles. We chatted at a red light, and he looked at my rear hub and did a double-take. Yes, for all his gears, he couldn't shake me with my AW.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Robert N on 6/10/2001 at 8:06:22 PM
You are in more of a hurry and have better legs than me. I enjoyed the image. I suspect the lycra crowd doesn't understand the potential of the AW. I have a 3 and a 10-speed. I can appreciate the differing qualities of both but my first choice is the 3-speed.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Bereto 's hub gear study posted by Dale Oswald on 6/11/2001 at 8:47:45 AM
I was riding with a friend who was always half a mile ahead of me last Sat. (my last ride with him). I was on my 35# recumbent with fat HP tires. I average about 12 mi/hr in flat, no-wind conditions, and this ride was hilly. All the beautiful people were riding around this nice county park on their Serottas and Cannondales, blowing by me. I guess it's a question of why we ride; they ride to go fast and I ride because it's fun and I'm training for touring, and for social interaction. So if my friend (or my daughter or anybody else) always rides half a mile ahead, I just don't ride with them anymore. Ditto for club rides, 'though I don't have this problem with the local or area recumbent groups.

BTW I probably got a better workout than any of them...

   RE:wish there was a market for 3-speeds posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 6/12/2001 at 7:53:27 AM
There is a market for three speeds. Have you offered them on E- bay? I pick these up myself and I meet folks that tighten their grip on the handlebar and glare at me when I ask them if they would ever sell the bike. You see these on the streets of New York as people still ride these. The hub gear will give years of service without much attention whereas the deraileur gets grit in the exposed gears and the jocky wheels get caked up with dirt, the teeth on the multi- speed speed freewheels wear out rapidly too.
I prefer the 28 inch wheel machines but to me the 26 inch cable brake bikes are collectible with all the diffrent badges, decals and colors some with enclosed chaincases some with diffrent styles of hockey stick chainguards. I picked up a Raleigh Sports for $75.00 and sold it for $225.00(after a good overhaul and polishing) The buyer was very happy and rides it to work. They disappear before the garbage truck arrives because there are many folks of all ages who will stop and grab a bike that is out by the kerb.

However on the other hand, I hear from a pal in England that because there are so many cheap Chinese mountain bikes flooding into England that these 3 speeds get thrown out there. This is not a black and white type thing. It probably depends on where you are and wheather or not you are near a interested buyer. Not to go thru the "green eggs and ham" routine, but have these folks who turn up their noses at the 3 speeds ever ridden the thing first? It is a comfortable neat little bike!
Please describe what you have and let us know what you are asking for them.Finding a home for a 3 speed should not be difficult especially here. Put up a sign in the market that says "commuter bikes for sale" Have you any Humber bikes with the cool double blade fork?

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   FG hub cleaning posted by: Edward in Vancouver on 6/7/2001 at 9:22:51 PM
Just got my FG hub laced up to a 40 spoke rim, and immediately mounted on my frame, without the tire, and squirted some oil in it. When freewheeling, it gives a dry, loud, echo-y, metalic click. The gear changes seem to work fine, but after hearing the dry clicking noise, I dis-mounted it and had a peek inside. I only dared to strip it down to the driver, but the oil I had previously squirted inside had turned a pleasant orange colour...
From what I can see, it seeems to be very light rust, no pitting, and nothing's welded together. Since alot of you guys (Christopher Robin included) consider a complete dismantle of a FG a "can of worms", what options do I have?

Is there some kind of substance I can fill the hub with to loosen the surface rust, soak, drain, and then flush out with? Is there a tool available to remove the r.h. ball ring (with the three indentations) so I can get closer to the planet cage for cleaning?

By the way, the thrust ring had a weird wear pattern on it. At first I thought the ring was machined off-center, but when closely examined there were deep scratches on one side, as if the hub had run without the washer inbetween the thrust ring and clutch spring. My grade 9 chemistry teacher once told me the secret of life a long time ago, "for every action there is an equal and opposite re-action". If this applies to the thrust ring as well, I wonder what to expect...

Edward in rainy Vancouver

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   FG hub cleaning posted by Bill Putnam on 6/8/2001 at 1:38:39 PM
I don't consider overhaul of an FG a "can of worms". Service
instructions are available on-line: http://www.hadland.net/
Go to hubs and derailler gears, How to repair old Sturmey-
Archer hubs, and then download the appropriate pages. Be
sure to keep the armature within the magnet when you remove
the magnet, and be very careful not to lose the internal
compensator spring (made out of "unobtanium"). If you
follow the instructions it really isn't a big deal.

There is a special tool to remove the right hand ball ring, however
these are extremely difficult to find and the most common
tool to use is a hammer and punch. I'm curious though that
you say yours has three indentations, I'm only aware of
two on any hub.

You can try flushing the hub with light oil, it wouldn't
hurt to remove the armature/magnet assembly when you do
this. Generally, though, you'll have better results if
you dismantle the hub and clean it. Especially if there's
any debris inside which can get caught between the gear
teeth and break a tooth off.

The FG does make a louder "tick tick" than the AW or AG
due to the nature of the design of the low gear pawls
(the FG having three rod shaped pawls rather than two
of the style seen in the AW).

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   FG hub cleaning posted by Edward in Vancouver on 6/9/2001 at 2:59:53 PM
Bill, if you claim that taking the hub apart is not as difficult as open heart surgery, I'll take your word for it. I downloaded the instructions for re-assembling the FG from Mr. Hadland's site in March. The instructions SEEM to be descriptive enough, but I'll probably need a Guru to guide me (via the 'net) when I re-assemble it. Will you help me if I'm in trouble?

I'm also squeamish about a hammer and cold punch to get the ball ring off, so I picked up a tool at Canadian Tire that vaguely resembles an oil filter wrench, which I can wrap around the ring and twist. Are the threads "normal", or "backwards" on the r.h. ball ring?
Edward in Vancouver

   RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   FG hub cleaning posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 6/10/2001 at 10:54:17 AM
I would still use the hammer and cold punch with a good set of goggles to protect your eyes. Unless you have the special tool Sturmey Archer offered I would use the punch like everyone else does. You can do this if you go slowly. the directions you can download are well written and if you have any questions then do not hesitate to e mail me or anybody else here.

   RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   FG hub cleaning posted by Bill Putnam on 6/11/2001 at 12:19:07 PM
Not having ever performed open heart surgery, nor likely ever to
perform open heart surgery, I can't comment on the relative complexity/
difficulty vs. an FG. As ChristopherRobin2 says you're
welcome to post questions here or e mail direct. I have another
FG waiting to be gone through so if you want I can rebuild mine
while you rebuild yours. It's easier when you're in the middle
of working on one than trying to recollect what you did a year
or more ago.

FOR SALE:   Pair of Raleighs- 27" Sprite and Sport posted by: Tom on 6/7/2001 at 9:09:58 PM
For Sale: 27" Brown and white Raleigh "Sprite" 5 speed w/rack Brooks saddle, Second bike is a Brown and white Raleigh "Sport" 3 speed w/rear bag....email for pics!!!

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Lambert Bicycle posted by: Ed on 6/7/2001 at 8:05:22 PM
I have an opportunity to purchase an English Lambert at a good price.I've read a little of their history and seen some pictures but thats the limit of my experience with them. I've heard that there were problems with their aluminum forks and that their bottom brackets were were not up to par.I would appreciate any imput from any of you that have had any personal experience with them or can provide any information before I spend my money,I'am not trying to put anyone on the spot and I will take full responsibility for my decision to buy or not. Thanks,Ed

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   ROD BRAKE PARTS posted by: MIKE FARRIS on 6/7/2001 at 4:04:54 PM

AGE / VALUE:   phillips posted by: A.J. on 6/7/2001 at 7:22:36 AM
haved picked up a phillips bike,its a compleat bike,gold color,has a really kool headbadge with a matching badge on rear fender,the 3spd hub is dated 53,the chainring has phillips cut out of it,i bout it 4 the hub,if there r any parts someome wants 2 trade for schwinn parts let me know

   RE:AGE / VALUE: phillips posted by dave on 6/7/2001 at 1:14:45 PM
Is the frame mens or womens and how large? Email me off list (dsimmons@fammed.wisc.edu) ... I tried to respond to the address listed and got a bounced message.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   phillips posted by jeff on 6/8/2001 at 7:21:50 PM
I have a 1953 alloy hub that I would consider trading toward the Phillips bike. Your email did not go through. contact me at scuba4bugs@aol.com if you have an interest.