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Archived: English Roadsters

AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by: Scott Smith on 12/17/2002 at 6:31:10 PM
Hi guys, I just purchased the Kenda 26x13/8 tires from VVVintage for my '67 Raleigh Superbe and they just got here. I was concerned because they are so narrow. My old crumbling square block treaded tires are much wider. Does anyone have any experience with the Kendas on their 3-speeds? Are there other sources for the square block tread tires? Thanks.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by Fred on 12/17/2002 at 9:35:39 PM
I have a bunch of 3 speed bikes that I put Kenda tires on. I think that they are a good tire for normal use. They always mount easily with no problems seating on Raleigh rims.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by P.C. Kohler on 12/17/2002 at 10:33:14 PM
If I EVER get my long languishing "why did I buy this" 1948 Raleigh Dawn Tourist on the road, she has a pair of new Kendas awaiting her. They look good to me. Not Dunlop Roadsters, "Made in Gt. Britain", of course, but even I am running short on those...

P.C. Kohler

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by David on 12/17/2002 at 11:10:01 PM
I'm convinced the Asian 26 x 1 3/8 tires are skinnier than the old English ones. The old 50s whitewalls just look fatter to me than the Kendas I'm riding on. I guess the best way to measure would be to roll the bike and measure the circumference.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by Chris on 12/18/2002 at 1:39:40 AM
You have to really compare and shop around. The local shop has 26 X 1 3/8 tires but they are thinner. The local hardware store has 28 X 1 3/8 tires and they are more balloonish. Depends on what style rim. There is a variety here with the thinner tires probably are going to be all you can get in the future. I'd stock up.
For a Westwood rod brake rim, the thinner tires will not do. For your bike they will work but the ride will be harsher. Good Luck

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by Edward in Vancouver on 12/18/2002 at 2:26:11 AM
Kendas, eh? I've got them on my Superbe and Sports. They're cheap, easy to get, and don't look too bad. Not a bad combo.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by Edward in Vancouver on 12/18/2002 at 2:26:22 AM
Kendas, eh? I've got them on my Superbe and Sports. They're cheap, easy to get, and don't look too bad. Not a bad combo.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by willieL. on 12/18/2002 at 3:07:04 PM
I had purchased three Kenda 26X1-3/8 gumwall tires from NYC bike shops for a Raleigh rim and discovered that all were a bit small in diameter or out of round. The annoying result is a flat spot on the mounted tire. I will never buy another Kenda.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Tires for my '67 Superbe posted by willieL. on 12/18/2002 at 3:07:07 PM
I had purchased three Kenda 26X1-3/8 gumwall tires from NYC bike shops for a Raleigh rim and discovered that all were a bit small in diameter or out of round. The annoying result is a flat spot on the mounted tire. I will never buy another Kenda.

   Those bloody tyres! posted by David Poston on 12/18/2002 at 9:54:35 PM
I posted the same thing not long ago. Are you guys referring to the blackwall Kendas or the whitewalls? I got the whitewalls from Harris Cyclery and they were quite a bit narrower than my original 55 Dunlops. Even the TUBE was MUCH NARROWER than the original Airseal tubes. I am awaiting some blackwall Kendas from Harris; these are supposed to have block tread. I'm hoping these will look a bit more appropriate.

The widest 26 x 1 3/8 tyre is on my 72 Rudge Sports. I don't think these are Dunlops, because they say "made in Belgium." These have the two thin white lines. They are hefty!

Now how about 28 x 1.5"? Are the repro roadster-sized tyres also narrow? I'm thinking I'll stick with my 70's Raleigh Roadsters for my DL-1's.


AGE / VALUE: posted by: Mark R. on 12/17/2002 at 5:49:38 PM
I ordered up a full chain case from Yellow Jersey. It was kinda expensive, but I've wanted one for my old bike for years so I figured: "what the hell?" I will let you all know how it looks when it comes in.
By the by, they have others, and I guess he's gonna get more. Check 'em out.

   RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by Ed on 12/17/2002 at 6:33:15 PM
Hi Mark: I have a couple of old Sports with hockey stick guards that I would like to replace with ful chain cases. How can I contact Yellow Jersey.
Thanks, Ed.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by P.C. Kohler on 12/17/2002 at 8:16:27 PM
CAUTION.... These Indian gearcases are ALL (to my knowledge) ONLY, repeat ONLY for cycles with bolted on backstays and chain adjusters like DL-1s. Not for Sports type machines with brazed on backstays and drop-out rear lugs. There's no way getting around this; it's a completely different back section etc.

I am hoping to get an Indian supplier to give me an estimate on remanufacturing the Raleigh special gearcase used for Sports type machines. It's nothing but pressed steel and spot-welding so we'll see what can be done.

P.C. Kohler, just back from England laden with stainless steel rims, old Brooks saddles and some wonderful catalogues...

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by Marko on 12/18/2002 at 3:06:19 AM
All too true.
Scroll down the page a bit and you will find their URL. I forgot to bookmark it. I suppose you could use the serch engine as well.
Up date to follow as soon as my case comes in.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by Mark R. on 12/18/2002 at 12:58:06 PM

Here you go! I DID bookmark it!! Yea for me!!!
Hopefully they can help in your search for a chaincase.

   RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by Tim Powell on 12/18/2002 at 1:42:59 PM

   RE:AGE / VALUE: posted by Tim Powell on 12/18/2002 at 1:45:40 PM
I have bought Indian Chaincases for bolt on stays and re-fettled the back end to fit brazed stays. It's a bit of a fiddle and you must make a wooden former before you start. But it can be done.

AGE / VALUE:What Brand is this Roadster? posted by: Max M. on 12/16/2002 at 2:40:22 PM
I hate posting EBay items on the discussion group but I was wondering if anyone knew what brand roadster this person is selling?

It has Phillips style linkages so I know it is not a Raleigh. Logo was a large W? The only thing that makes me agree it is British is that it has a Dynohub.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:What Brand is this Roadster? posted by Tim Powell on 12/16/2002 at 3:26:38 PM
Looks like a CWS to me. English pre 1930. It would be easier if you had a better picture of the head badge.


   RE:AGE / VALUE:What Brand is this Roadster? posted by Matthew on 12/17/2002 at 8:06:08 PM
I agree with Tim the supersize photo of the head transfer clearly, or not so clearly, says CWS Co-op Cycle works. However it is almost exactly the same as a 1930's Hercules that I own. I know that CWS were made in Tydesley near Manchester and this particular example is at least 65 years old.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:What Brand is this Roadster? posted by Chris on 12/18/2002 at 1:53:34 AM
My CWS bicycle has a different badge but it is a 1960's bike and this thing looks older and not being familiar with all that CWS was I would not know for certain.
Notice the B.S.A. style head clip!

AGE / VALUE:Shimano Nexus Dynohub posted by: Chris on 12/15/2002 at 8:52:54 PM
This Shimano Dynohub is just a tad too wide for my Raleigh Tourist D.L.1 fork. Well, the old style front fork from the early 30's anyways. Perhaps I'll put it in the 1960 model Dl1 Tourist. I will probably have to trim a tiny bit of metal to get this in and spread the forks a wee bit. I hate spreading forks. I was thinking... "Why did I want this?"

Then the young shop helper guy asked "What is that in that wheel?" Well, that is part of the answer! People will be looking and wondering what it is,and some crazy part of me likes that mysterious air. Also the fact that these are hard to find. A little too much friction for my liking,it is not as free as the Sturmey- Archer either but for short jaunts or with a future motorized project it'll be cool!

It was not cheap, and this is not something I'll do again.
My Raleigh Reg Harris Road Model with the lightweight rims and the F.C. hub sits impatiently. My mechanic friend talks news events and the political scene and it's like all the escape-ism has drained away. The ugly and modern kid' bike with those aweful pegs was the savior bike for Huffy, that and those scooters,he said.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Shimano Nexus Dynohub posted by David on 12/16/2002 at 3:41:59 AM
Why not use a SA Dynohub in the roadster? Do you really need 3W?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Shimano Nexus Dynohub posted by Chris on 12/16/2002 at 5:49:21 PM
I prefer the 12 volt dynohubs actually. The Nexus, I look forward to riding and seeing how it works in use.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Shimano Nexus Dynohub posted by humberchristopher28@hotmail.com on 12/19/2002 at 9:33:31 PM
Am I the only one who has one of these in their Raleigh Tourists?
Any other Nexus users out there?

MISC:SA service manual dating posted by: David on 12/15/2002 at 3:29:52 PM
I have a xerox of a Sturmey-Archer service manual. It has info on the AB, AC, AG, AM, ASC, AW, BF, BR, FC, FG, FM, FW, and GH6 models. The cover sez "Ref. No. A.D. 1498." Is this most likely from the year 1948? (A crossword puzzler involved in its production?)

AGE / VALUE:a good site to check out posted by: sam on 12/15/2002 at 3:49:29 AM
check out this site--I liked bike parking 101 http://www.jimlangley.net/index.html -----sam

   RE:AGE / VALUE:a good site to check out posted by Ken on 12/15/2002 at 6:52:54 PM
Another great call, Sam. Langley is the author of most of Bicycling Magazine's tech articles for years, and shows his love for every aspect of the cycling world.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:ebay sports and superbe posted by: David on 12/14/2002 at 2:14:19 PM
NMA - very late Sports and vg 70s Superbe - not my size!


ENGLISH ROADSTERS:20-inch Roadster style posted by: Clyde on 12/14/2002 at 2:09:38 AM
Need a Roadster for the kids? Check out:


Not my auction, etc. etc.

MISC:Chain case parts? posted by: David on 12/13/2002 at 11:42:07 AM
I'm slowly transferring the components from a 50s ladies' Sports to a larger men's frame. The chaincase is missing a bracket that fastens the part to the chainstay. As usual, the smaller the part is, the greater the chance that it's gone! The exploded diagrams on this site indicate that two similar brackets make up the whole assembly, one tapped for the screws that hold it all together. I'll have to make these or adapt something similar. What color should they be? Both black? Or is the outer one chromed?

   RE:MISC:Chain case parts? posted by Mucus on 12/13/2002 at 4:20:39 PM
Mine is painted black.

   RE:RE:MISC:Chain case parts? posted by Chris on 12/13/2002 at 5:05:02 PM
Depends. Sometimes the outer one is chrome and the inner one which is tapped to take the threads is black.
Sometimes thay are both black. Sometimes the screws that the rod brake fork clamps are attached with are this very same thread size.
Sheldon Brown recently updated his Raleigh web page and he tells that these get tapped out to a modern thread size.
Where exactly this is at Sheldon's page You'll have to look up. But if you go to SheldonBrown.com Raleigh bicycles care and feeding and look around from there you'll find it. It is an article so it will be in that section.
Good Luck

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:Chain case parts? posted by Mark R. on 12/13/2002 at 5:08:00 PM
i think that if you make a reasonable close copy, what difference will it make which thread it has? Just do your best, and ride happy.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:Chain case parts? posted by Chris on 12/13/2002 at 5:09:49 PM
Sometimes the outer one is chrome and the inner one is not painted at all but is black in color as it is Japaned or some type rust resistent finish.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:Triumph Bike posted by: Tom on 12/13/2002 at 6:07:20 AM
I saw this on ebay and thought you guys might want to bid on it. It is a very rare and nice looking bike.It has the original looking whitewalls. The T on the top of fork is nice also. Rod brakes and fully enclosed chaincase. 26" wheels. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=745437836

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:sprite posted by Claudio on 12/15/2002 at 2:18:46 AM
Does anyone know if Sprite's came in 3 speeds. I always thought they were 5's and thenm some 10's were built, but very rare.....

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:sprite posted by David on 12/15/2002 at 2:58:50 AM
In my 70s Raleigh catalog, the Sprite is available in 5 and 10-speed versions (derailleur gears). Earlier ones used the SA 5-speed hub. I haven't heard of any Sprites besides these.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:Triumph Bike posted by Dennis on 12/16/2002 at 3:13:28 AM
There is a 3 speed sprite on ebay but i have never seen anything like it. The seller claims it is an English made bike. but i wonder. When and where was this made? Here is the link: Peter, maybe you better not look at this.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:Triumph Bike posted by David on 12/16/2002 at 4:16:26 AM
That "Sprite" is extremely new (when did SA start making the black plastic triggers?) and the seller's claim that it only has 20 miles seems very strange given that the front and rear tires don't match. I think it's a very late product, from the time Raleigh used the names of the old 531-framed bikes on heavy bottom-of-the-line lightweights.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:Triumph Bike posted by Marko on 12/18/2002 at 5:47:18 PM
WOW! It went for $401! Rightious spendola! Beautiful bike.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:Hercules Sign posted by: Tom on 12/13/2002 at 4:35:28 AM
Here is a very nice Hercules sign on ebay. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=420&item=746847952&rd=1

MISC:Stoker post for English Tandem posted by: Robert Bailey on 12/12/2002 at 9:22:41 PM
I am rebuilding an English racing tandem my father brought home almost 40 years ago. I can't afford a full restoration...yet, so I am using some modern parts to get it up and running. The seatpost for the Captain's saddle/Stokers bars is beyond use. Anyone know of one? I need it for 26.8 post. Y'all would love this old bike. I have never measured the wheelbase, but it is waaayyyy out there.

   RE:MISC:Stoker post for English Tandem posted by Oscar on 12/13/2002 at 4:56:26 AM
This is a seatpost size that was used in a lot of different road bikes. Schwinn Supersports used this size, as well as some Japanese road bikes.

AGE / VALUE:New Roadster grips available posted by: Pete on 12/12/2002 at 2:06:22 PM
Hello All I have just got in some new handlebar grips, that
have been made for the original mould by the original company. The are 5" black rubber and are 7/8 dia with a lovely grip pattern. also two dimonds with "Britainnia" and
"British made". Perfect for your old bikes $18 inc post
less for bulk. I will have a pic soon on my website www.oldcyclebits.co.uk

MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by: J. M. Vernooy on 12/12/2002 at 4:42:22 AM
Wanted to thank VVVintage and all of you who post here. Until I found this site, Sheldon Brown's site, and a few others, I thought I was alone in my facination for 3 speed bikes made in England that use the Sturmey Archer hub. I have worked as a bicycle mechanic for 33 years and I don't get as excited about the new bikes as when I'm working on or riding a vintage Raleigh, Rudge, Robin Hood, Hercules, Triumph, etc., bicycle equipped with a Sturmey Archer hub. I have used the tip about Kiwi natural color boot polish for polishing the paint on Raleighs and other bicycles. Even used it to clean up some blackwall Dunlop tires and to shine up and clean some scratches out of a record player turntable dust cover. About two months ago a customer of mine told me that at another bike shop in this town he had been ridiculed for still using a 3 speed bicycle. The customer also found out that the mechanic who ridiculed him didn't know how to work on a Sturmey Archer model AW hub anyway. I asked the customer why he was at that other shop, took care of his hub problem in less than 30 minutes, and reassured him that he was right about 3 speed bikes and most of the rest of the country was wrong. Couldn't charge much to repair the hub as it didn't take long and used only a $2 part. I've been working on Sturmey Archer model AW hubs since I was about 10 years old. So I started to compare the cost of upkeep between the roadsters or light roadsters and the cheap mountain bikes that many here ride for basic transportation. Roadsters and light roadsters won by a great margin, much less expensive to maintain. Plus the roadsters and light roadsters are lighter, smoother running, faster, easier to pedal, have greater immunity to inclement weather, and look better. Mountain bikes have their place but it is not usually on roads. Sorry about rambling on. Thank you for restoring my faith that there are still many people who know what bicycles are not only the best for transportation on the roads but are the most fun to ride, repair, or just plain look at.

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Brian on 12/12/2002 at 11:45:26 AM
You sir, hit the bullseye & the proverbial nail-on-the-head.
Only a handful of bicycle designs can match the British Sports/Roadster three-speed for form/function perfection. They look pretty damn good too! On this list you are among friends of the English three-speed.

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Mark R./Mucus on 12/12/2002 at 12:44:27 PM
Welcome, wecome, wecome! thank God there are still people like you in this modern lousy world! You are definately amounst friends, and allies here old man! Please add any comments you can think of! Where do you live/work? I would bring all my bikes to you if you are near by.
Best wishes!!!

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by David Poston on 12/12/2002 at 8:35:05 PM
Thank you, good sir, for keeping the tradition alive. There are few mechanics who know how to work with (and appreciate) the Sturmey Archer 3-speed.

Once I took my Rudge (my very first English cycle, in fact) to a mechanic to get overhauled. When I got it back, it wouldn't stay in gear and kept slipping in 2nd. He said, "There's something wrong with that hub. It's that (no-good) hub." Well, after reading Sheldon's site and hanging out here, I figured out all that was wrong was the cable adjustment. I eventually discovered how to get the proper gear cable tension, and I solved the problem completely.

I have yet to see proof as to why the mountain bike is nothing more than a marketing gimmick which foolish consumers have swallowed hook, bait, and sinker. They are ugly, and they are uncomfortable to ride. Why, I ask. Why?


   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Michael K. on 12/12/2002 at 9:34:19 PM
That's about how I felt when I found Sheldon's site and Oldroads...like I washed up on a beautiful tropical isle in the middle of nothing but hostile ocean...wonderful post to read! Yup, you're in the Right Spot!!

   RE:RE:MISC:   Hello and Thank You posted by Chris on 12/12/2002 at 10:35:54 PM
You are welcome. Please pass the word along about this web site and the others that you have seen.

   RE:RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Lincoln on 12/13/2002 at 3:15:28 AM
Marketing apart, mountain bikes can be very fun, OFF ROAD. ON the road, it certainly is tough to beat the English 3 speed for comfort and practicality.
David wrote:
>I have yet to see proof as to why the mountain bike is nothing more than a marketing gimmick which
>foolish consumers have swallowed hook, bait, and sinker. They are ugly, and they are uncomfortable to
>ride. Why, I ask. Why?

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by William on 12/13/2002 at 2:01:06 PM
Hi guys,
This IS THE DISCUSSION SITE for English Roadsters,and I mean 'THE ONE'.Yeah,this is THE site we all talk about,discuss,exchange and share ideas,opinions,tips and advice regarding Roadsters.I'm learning stuff from you guys here and I thank you all very much.Can't seem to find anyone as enthusiastic as you guys back here.

Mountain bikes?? Yeah,they give lousy rides on macadams,you just can't beat the silky smoothness of an English Roadster.Long Live English Roadsters.Take care and Happy Riding.

William Soon,Malaysia.

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Tom on 12/13/2002 at 4:25:04 PM
This is a great site for English Roadsters. I have learned a lot from you guys. I check daily for the new stuff. I see a few postings putting down the mountain bikes. I know they are a marketing gimmik to most people. A lot of them are junk bikes. I don't think they are bad for the future of cycling. They do get the kids out riding and away from the TV. What bikes would the kids be on now if there was no mountain bikes? Muscle bikes, roadsters, road bikes or balloon bikes. In the years when I grew up I had single speed CCM and Eatons Gliders. In the 30's came the balloon tire bikes. Then the middle weight. The 60's and 70's came the muscle bike scene. Those bike were also a marketing gimmik. Then came the bike boom with all those road racers, also a junk era. We now have the mountain bikes. What will be next. I think the roadster started the multi speed bikes. Roadsters have had gears since the turn of the century. Still the roadster lives on but not in North America where there is so much money. It seems like they are great for a small crowd like us on oldroads. The bikes are now made in the East where there is little money. Why is it that they are not made here. Maybe we follow the leader in North America and ride what is "in style". I love my roadsters still. I don't have a mountain bike but I did have one a few years ago. I rode it off road a lot. My roadster would not put up with what I did on that bike. I am lucky to live next to a large park where there is paved roads and trails for bikes. They also have many miles of off road trails. The park also has horse trails. I ride quite often on the paved trails with my roadsters and balloon tire bikes. I get looks when ever I am out and get stopped to ask how old the bikes are. I love to ride them. I do miss the off road riding I used to do. I will get another mountain bike just for that. I think there is a market for all bikes old or new. I am sure that a few of the people on here on oldroads English Roadsters that have other bikes like balloon, mountain, muscle and road bikes. Maybe after this the mountain bike gang will turn to the Roadster. Long live the bicycle and I believe the Roadsters will live on for ever. Greatest bikes made (roadsters).

   RE:RE:MISC: Hello and Thank You posted by J. M. Vernooy on 12/15/2002 at 4:17:15 PM
Thanks to all for the welcome.
And in answer to Mark R./Mucus,
I live/work in New York State, U.S.A.

   RE:MISC:Hello and Thank You posted by Nigel Land on 12/17/2002 at 6:24:13 PM
Great to hear such enthusiasm for roadsters, living in England, as I do. My everyday bike is a BSA Sunbeam, 1950, but my main interest is in Elswick-Hopper machines as I am researching the company for a history book. I have a 1937 Hopper Sports in original paint with a K S-A hub. S-A really had it figured out, which isn't surprising as they started in 1902. So, how many Elswicks or Hoppers are there in the USA? I know they sold quite well so there must be some left!
Nigel Land

AGE / VALUE: Time travel back, pay them for the wagon, they need the money posted by: Chris on 12/12/2002 at 1:48:54 AM
This story on T.V. shows the great depression and the Dust bowl shows these people sitting around with nothing. Then they show this awesome childs wagon with aero wheel covers!
This wagon would be worth perhaps $500.00 today.
I thought: Fat lot of good it did them then, they were starving and broke. Leave it to me to notice the bikes, wagons or tricycles. They would have had to wait 70 years before it was worth money and by then they are all dead or really old and the dust bowl and the Great Depression was over. It was just strange seeing that wagon in the midst of all that poverty.