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Archived: English Roadsters

AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by: Roxy on 2/1/2004 at 12:55:23 AM
A friend just gave me a Dawes Echelon Bike.It seems to be very nice.It has reynolds tubing.The derailleurs and chainrings are shimano .Other than that the bike seems to be original.I'd like to know how old the bike might be and what it might be worth.I'm about to put 200 dollars into it to get it roadworthy again.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by Dick in FL on 2/1/2004 at 7:46:40 AM
Hi Roxy
I don't have any information for you. But I do have a lady's 23 inch Dawes Shadow, and I hope the local Dawes expert can help us both. My brother acquired this bicycle simply for the nice plastic fenders, and turned the remaining carcass over to me because of my affection for tall lady's bikes. This bicyle, in addition to being taller than any other lady's bikes I have run across, is meticulously finished with script engraving on most of the components and paint highlighting on the lug edges. It is very rigid for a step-through bicycle. Just what I like for on-and-off urban errands. I am puzzled about the target market for this model. I would think that any woman serious enough about cyling to purchase a fine machine with drop alloy handlebars and downtube shift controls would go for a man's model. ??

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/1/2004 at 10:41:01 PM
Er.. well... maybe because Dawes is an English make and English ladies (well some at least) are just that and they ride a lady's frame. The idea of a lady riding a classic British machine with a gent's frame is an appalling prospect. Simply not done. Now some of your rather "husky" lasses did ride gent's club bikes starting in the '40s as did the great British woman cyclist Beryl Burton, but that was in competition.

My British wife is adament.. has to be a lady's frame. She has a DL-1L and I just got her a lovely 1957 Raleigh Lenton Sports with a lady's frame after a surprisingly long search. And no one looks better on a DL-1L than my wife... She's now in search of classic '50s ladies cycle kit so I shall have the incentive to lag behind and admire the view..

P.C. Kohler, happy to consign "unisex" to the ashcan of trendy nonsense.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/1/2004 at 10:55:33 PM
If you want to read a truly inspirational story about the great Beryl Burton, check out this site:


   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by Dick in FL on 2/2/2004 at 5:58:01 PM
Thanks for the link; I was particularly impressed with her achievment of 23 mph average speed for 12 hours. Here I am fretting about averaging 14 mph for 7 hours in order to beat the SAG wagon home in the Florida Bicycle Safari century rides.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/2/2004 at 9:08:09 PM
She was pretty amazing. I think I'm doing great averaging 22 mph over a 12-mile course on my Clubman! Doing 23 mph AVERAGE for 12 hours is impressive... then and now. And she did this without all the high tech nonsense of today of course. In her early days, Beryl used to feature in Hercules ads and they may have sponsored her. And yes... top of the Herc racer (lovely machines) and yes... a gents frame!

This site has some other wonderful and largely unsung British cycle champions. Worth checking out.

P.C. Kohler

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by Roxy on 2/4/2004 at 4:49:39 AM
I guess my post got hijacked.
I simply was trying to find out some info on the bike I have.Were Dawes bikes considered good bikes?Is anyone familiar with the Dawes Echelon.When was it made?War it a top of the line racer at the ime or just a mid level bike.I just put 250.- into the bike to get it into proper working condition did I waste my money? It seems to be a very nice bike.It has a reynolds frame suntour shifters and weinmann brakes.Can we get back to what my original question was?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/5/2004 at 7:38:27 PM
Hmmm.. well Roxy I don't know about your "post being hijacked". This is, afterall, a "discussion site", not a "tell me what I want to know and now" forum. If we all stuck to a topic, we'd never learn anything! At least not around here.

I don't know about later Dawes, mostly their 1950s roadsters and club bikes. Dawes was a good, mid-market, production bike and the last independent still making bikes in England after Elswick-Hooper packed in during the late 60s (think). Dawes is best known for their '70s and '80s bike boom lightweights... nothing exceptional but they were of a good quality, as good as mid-range Raleighs, Peugeot, Gitane etc.

If you put $250 into a bike you enjoy riding it's worth it. What can you buy for $250 nowadays? As for resale value, think on... Dawes simply do not attract great sums on eBay or charity shops. Nor do most of the bike boom bikes. There are simply too many of them.

P.C. Kohler, Post Hijacker Extraordinaire

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by Jay on 2/7/2004 at 10:54:38 PM

I have a Dawes Echelon that I purchased used in 1987. They guy I bought it from used to tour with it in Europe back in the late 70's, early 80's, so I consider it a road racing bike and used it as such until I outgrew it. It is a solid bike, and I really enjoyed it. I think the $250 is a worthy investment, and you could probably cover your costs if you tried selling it used at a bike shop.

Good luck, and enjoy the ride!

Jay "The non-hijacking Dawes answer guy"

   RE:AGE / VALUE:Dawes Echelon posted by Roxy on 2/11/2004 at 5:46:38 PM
Thank you for the info Jay and PC.After my first ride where the brakes did not work well at all and the front derailleur cable slipped,I wasn't so happy.But now I have a set of modern brake pads on and the derailleur is fixed.I went for a ride yesterday and the bike feels great.Part of the 250.- I spent went to a new seat, a Bontrager seatpost and a headset(I think that is what you call it) that is a little taller and more forward reaching than the original.I'm 6'1" so whith the old headset Iit would have felt a bit tight.I'm moving to Coeur D'Alene Idaho in a month and that is bike heaven.There is a 74 mile paved bike trail that leads all the way into Montana.I can't wait!

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by: Mark Rehder on 1/31/2004 at 7:34:16 PM
Last Fall I was riding my lovely 1971 Superbe and noticed that the lights were not as bright as they had been the night before. I got the bike home and spun the cranks and sure enough, the light output had dropped by half. I have not been able to figure out what caused this. It worked just fine for a few months, and then poof. I took it into the bike shop where I work part-time, as my boss Peter has the same make of bike and knows these Dynohub systems, but after poking around and getting me to clean up some of the electrical contact points, he was stumped. Any advice on how to get my old Superbe shining brightly again would be appreciated! Oh, and you can see it at http://www.drumbent.com/superbe.html

Cheers, Mark

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by Stacey on 1/31/2004 at 9:41:01 PM
Mark, I'd take a CLOSE look at all of those crimp on terminals. I rescued a DH/DBU system from a derilict Phillips to mount on my Folding 20. In the course of handling the harness & connectors, I had two of the connectors just fall off. My cure was to open up the lazy crimp and brighten up the metal, re-crimp the connection and apply a touch of sodier to the all the connectors save for the slip fit joints in the headlight.

You could always try running a jumper wire (alligator clips on each end) to shunt one wire at a time. A return of bright lights will instantly indicate if you have found a wire with high resistance.

A question of the dumb... You say you "spun the cranks". From the picture (stunning ride I might add) it looks like the bike has a GH6 front dyno, yes? If that's the case spinning the cranks won't produce any light. Just an observation :-)

Maybe Peter could shed some light (pun intended) as to why a DH system in conjunction with a DBU burns brightly when running off the genny, yet a candle is brighter than the lights while running on the batteries? Serious question. That's the problem I, and some others are having.

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by James on 2/1/2004 at 5:42:50 PM
What type of battery are you two using? Does it match the dynohub's output?

   RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by Stacey on 2/1/2004 at 8:49:15 PM
I'm using a trio of D cells as called for in the DBU, rated I believe at 1.5 volts each. Doing the math I realize this totals 4.5 volts... 1.5 v below the bulb rating.

The difference from genny to batteries seems as though the spread is far greater. It would be GREAT to find some similar sized batteries rated at 2v. Ideas?

   RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: problem with Dynohub lighting posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/1/2004 at 10:48:13 PM
Gosh, Stacey... I can't even get my GH6 on my '49 Rudge to stop cutting out when she's out in the cold for 20 mins!!

And you're lucky...riding my '51 Rudge my bulb is dim (sounds rather a personal problem) running on both the dynohub and on the batteries. A faint if not unattractive murky amber light.

Hmmm... are British "D" cells of a different voltage rating perhaps?? Something is clearly amiss but alas I am inadequate to the task here.

P.C. Kohler

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by James on 2/2/2004 at 12:11:36 AM
One solution might be to find a better battery that fits in the battery tube, maybe I modern rechargable that takes up less space. I have no idea what the inside of a SA battery tube looks like, but I imagine it could be rewired to take a different type of battery.

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by Stacey on 2/2/2004 at 12:58:34 AM
James, picture a flashlight that takes 3 D cell batteries. Now cut off the bulb, reflector & lens part... you have a cylinder that holds 3 D cells. That's a DBU... not much latitude :-(

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   problem with Dynohub lighting posted by James on 2/3/2004 at 9:39:06 AM
Does the dynohub tube contain a bridge wave rectifier to turn the batteries DC into AC? I read that these things typically can't handle large voltages. It's possible that the 4.5 volts produced by the 3 batteries is all it can take.

AGE / VALUE:   Age of Canadian roadster posted by: Mark Rehder on 1/31/2004 at 7:23:39 PM
(Warren, this may be one for you!) I have an old ladies frame roadster, and the name badge reads "Cyco". It also has "Weston, Ontario" on it in small script, which is where the big CCM plant was located. So I'm presuming it's a re-badge of some sort. My question is its age; the guy who I got it from said he thought early 1950s, but upon looking at a few pictures in the database here at Old Roads I think it may be a war-time machine. Please have a look at http://www.drumbent.com/ccm.html (Does it look like the forks are bent back just a bit?) Any feedback is appreciated. I think I'll overhaul it this Spring. New bearings, maybe even new 28" tires.

Cheers, Mark

   RE:AGE / VALUE: Age of Canadian roadster posted by Warren on 2/1/2004 at 12:11:05 AM
The Cyco was a joint project with a central European country...maybe Checkoslovakia where the frame, forks and other components were sent offshore, assembled and then distributed. I don't know the date but can likely find out. These are the only CCM bikes made after the late 20's through the 60's that didn't have the CCM cranksets.

I'm sending you the date codes for bikes up to 1960...I hope that it applies to yours. It certainly looks like early 50's to me, but they didn't change much from the 30's to the 60's...they always carried a womans roadster that looked much like that.

MISC:   Bicycle Identification Project posted by: VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc. at OldRoads.com on 1/31/2004 at 6:35:21 PM
We've just finished the first month of the Bicycle Identification Project.
The initial reference tables have been identified and populated, and around 600 cycles have been entered.

The next phase is to pump in as many bicycles as possible.
Click on the "Bicycle Identification Project" notice above and check it out, and add your cycles!

Vin - VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc. at OldRoads.com

   RE:MISC:   Bicycle Identification Project posted by Stewart Ennis on 2/2/2004 at 11:54:36 PM
Sorry if this is ot right place to post this question. I am tryig to date an old Raleigh English Roadster. It is Black with Black mudguards (white strip at bottom), leather straps on pedals, sturmey archer rear hub(can't find two digit date), /front dyno hub(with 32R engraved) hub cable brakes, brooks saddle. The serial number on frame below the saddle is 13913 J (the J is below the number). Can anyone help me? Or post this on to someoe who can?
Glasgow, Scotland

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Reynolds Comfort Moustache Bars posted by: Max M. on 1/31/2004 at 4:25:49 AM
Just in case you want them but haven't been looking...Ebay Item number: 2220393043
Perfect for restoring your Raleigh Lenton Tourist.

Why did Raleigh not make many US models with these bars? I understand they are quite comfortable.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Reynolds Comfort Moustache Bars posted by Larry "Boneman" Bone on 1/31/2004 at 11:33:20 AM
$76?!?!? OK, is this realistic or just another example of ebay madness? (no offence to anyone bidding of course!)

There's a fellow that rides a "roadster" of japanese manufacture at work that has all aluminum parts such as that. I believe it's an Akubi or something. Neat bike, though I've not hefted it to see if it's considerably lighter. Kind of reminds me of a 5-speed Sprite. Though his does not have mudguards and I've not had the opportunity to ask if it once did.

Neat bars though and I would presume that in fact if they are dated correctly (40's) then yes, probably worth a fairly handsome sum.

Nice find nonetheless!


Larry "Boneman" Bone

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Reynolds Comfort Moustache Bars posted by: Max M. on 1/31/2004 at 4:25:49 AM
Just in case you want them but haven't been looking...
Perfect for restoring your Raleigh Lenton Tourist.

Why did Raleigh not make many US models with these bars? I understand they are quite comfortable.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   stipprd threads posted by: Charles Ellis on 1/30/2004 at 6:56:31 PM
Has anyone tried a die to restore stripped axle threads? Or would an axle for a dyno hub be available somewhere?

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   stipprd threads posted by Steve Ringlee on 1/31/2004 at 4:20:10 AM
Tough: how many threads per inch on your axle? Mine is in the garage and it's about -8 out there, else I would measure it. If it's a British standard, then you will have a tough time finding a die. One solution might be to use a small Swiss triangular file to re-shape each thread enough to secure the nut.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   stipprd threads posted by Edward in Vancouver on 1/31/2004 at 4:29:17 AM
Don't risk re-tapping the threads, it's not worth it. If it wasn't for the S/A cones, you could use any axle, but S/A cones are unique. I've had good success in finding hollow Tiawanese BMX front axles that have the same 26 tpi threading for the S/A cones, and you get to use a q/r to boot! I've also had some success in grinding the sun ring off an AW axle and then using the AW cones and axle in a GH6 hub--however you'll have to add on 1/4" more threading on the axle which is easier said than done. For this you'll need a good supply of pitted AW cones, spin them on the axle and use them as a die, they're good for about 1-11/2 threads, and then you have to replace them with a fresh (albeit pitted) cone to continue threading. A lot of work, but hey, when it's time to replace the cones (for some reason the GH6 is very hard on cones) you can use regular AW cones.
Edward "been there,done that,got the T-shirt" in Vancouver

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   stipprd threads posted by Matthew on 1/31/2004 at 9:42:57 AM
Careful chaps! This not an easy area to work in. Many if not all threads on roadsters are British Standard Cycle Thread which does appear on some thread charts. BSCT is generally a finer thread than UNC more like UNF but not the same and nothing like Whitworth or Metric. Sorry if this sounds like an engineering lecture but even this little bit of information might help if you went to your local machine shop (the guy with lathes and milling machines etc)to get a thread restored or a new axle made. you could try your local Model engineers club, you know the guys who make quarter scale replicas of the Robert E Lee or a Union Pacific loco, they tend to be enthusiastic about threads per inch and pitch angles enough to get you put right. The quickest alteranvie is to find anothe hub with the correct axle and use it for spares.

Take care, Always wear safety goggles and steel toe capped boots. (It makes reading the pages on eBay much safer!)


AGE / VALUE:   Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by: Kimo on 1/28/2004 at 1:21:06 AM
Check out these wheels.

The old sod is the source I guess. I'm headed there next weekend anything, any shop, any ? worth seeing?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by David on 1/28/2004 at 11:57:53 AM
Love those valanced fenders! Do you think they're aftermarket? (It seems like the old sod is a bad speller, though!)

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by P.C. Kohler on 1/28/2004 at 4:05:21 PM
No, this machine appears to be entirely, gloriously original.. this is a mid '30s (not '20s) Rudge Roadster in all-weather black finish and the wonderful motorcycle valanced mudguards pecular to this model. Simply put, one of the best examples of the Classic English Roadster ever offer on eBay. If I weren't so gun shy after my recent 'orrible experiences with getting bikes from England (well getting them "restored" there I should say) I'd be sorely tempted. This one will fetch a packet and it's worth every penny. Simply magnificent!

P.C. Kohler

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by Matthew on 1/28/2004 at 9:32:57 PM
I'm with PC on this one.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by Larry "Boneman" Bone on 1/28/2004 at 10:10:20 PM
Yeah, me too. Being a real fan of valanced fenders (I ride a Vulcan Drifter... same full-valanced fenders as the old Indian motorcycles), that's a pretty machine.

I've pondered adding valances of that nature... or a similar nature to one of my sports machines. Just for "fun".

I would bet P.C. is on the money here though... that bike is going to command a good price.


Larry "Boneman" Bone

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by P.C. Kohler on 1/29/2004 at 12:26:41 AM
Well.. she fetched "only" £180 or about $308 and only 8 bids. That's the price of two dark, crummy photos, a high reserve and zero description. Someone has a bargain. It even appears to have the original pump!! Amazing.

This is, from those two lousy photos, a Rudge-Whitworth no. 78 "Roadster" (yes that the official model name!), looks to be a 22" frame, 28" wheels, S/A three-speed hub, the wonderfully superior Rudge gearcase, all-black finish. This machine cost a whopping £7.0.6 in 1938... no wonder they are rare!! You could buy two Hercules roadsters for that.

I have only seen one or two "real" Rudges, i.e. Coventry-made, prior to the Raleigh takeover and the quality and finish of these is simply outstanding. As good as any Sunbeam, better by the '30s actually.

Imagine, a bike of this quality for what you'd pay at K-Mart for some Chinese-made piece of **** with 21 gears and spray on chrome!

You gotta love eBay especially when it's too cold to think much about cycling!

P.C. Kohler

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by Ralph on 1/29/2004 at 5:40:43 PM
What too cold? I ride to work every day. None of that Florida or California stuff either. Ohio! Cleveland! Snow belt!

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by edgarecks on 1/30/2004 at 3:51:44 PM
I used to ride every day in Cleveland too! Going down Broadway from Slavic Village to Downtown was especially fun, one thing I don't miss is the daily shouts of "get the @#$% off the road" and the bottles being thrown at me at least monthly - Edgar ecks from sunny, sunny Tucson where riding every day is a pleasure, not a chore.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by David Poston on 2/1/2004 at 5:32:33 PM
Wow, now this is a real machine! PC--Are you sure that this one is 1930s and not 20s? When did they discontinue those wonderful, Sunbeam-like gearcases without the gap in the middle? It is very reminiscent of the c. 1920s Sunbeam which I am (hopefully) to acquire from H. Russell this month. The bars, the gearcase, everything but the weird mudguards. Perhaps my Sunbeam is a c. 1930s machine after all.


   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Rudge Whitworth on EBAY posted by P.C. Kohler on 2/2/2004 at 3:09:13 AM
Now David, say anything you want about a Rudge-Whitworth, but don't compare it to a Sunbeam!! The Rudge patented gearcase was leagues better than a Sunbeams because it was fully hinged and with the flick of a spring clip, the entire bottom bit came down, allowing easy access to both the chain and also to permit easy tyre removal. Try that on a Sunbeam!! And it was much superior to the Raleigh with that damn fiddly endy bit and those sodding plates..!!

Valanced mudguards are wonderful, not weird and are a great motorcycle like accessory that reminds us that Rudge made Britain best motorcycles.

I sure hope this splendid bike found a worthy home.. love to see some really good photos of her all cleaned up and road worthy. I suspect it won't take much.

Good luck with your Sunbeam... I know it's been a "project"!

P.C. Kohler

   Gearcases posted by David Poston on 2/2/2004 at 10:32:40 PM
Hinged gearcases? That must have been wonderful. Why couldn't bicycle manufacturers have implemented that in later years? Or was it Raleigh that brought down the rest of the cycle industry with their brand of gearcase post-1940s?

I have always loved the look of gearcases, but hated to fiddle with them. Seems like the early Rudge-Whitworth ones would have been way more practical.


AGE / VALUE:   KIA Boy's 3-Speed Spider Bike posted by: Geoff on 1/27/2004 at 2:03:31 PM
I'm looking for info on KIA Bicycles. So far, no luck, but no doubt this is the same Korean company no making cars. I have a Boy's 3-Speed Spider in very nice condition, and I would love to know the age/value. I bought it because it looked very familiar to me (especially a color-bar stripe sticker on the top tube) and I think my first single-speed spider *may* have been the same brand (E.J. Korvettes, circa 1967), but this may be a newer bike. Serial # A5005750 It is Metallic Gold with a black "banana" seat. I also would be interested in buying a new front tire the bike (20 x 1.75) with white pinstripe. Thanks, Geoff

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   KIA Boy's 3-Speed Spider Bike posted by geoff on 1/27/2004 at 3:27:52 PM
Sorry, wrong discussion area! :-)

AGE / VALUE:   Very nice... but I wonder? posted by: Larry "Boneman" Bone on 1/27/2004 at 1:11:49 AM

I'm still kicking myself for not bidding on the 1933... now this one turns up but I'm not so sure about the shipping. 150 pounds to ship to US? Is that realistic?

Either way, a very sharp Raleigh, indeed!


Larry "Boneman" Bone

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Very nice... but I wonder? posted by Mike on 1/27/2004 at 2:57:43 PM
A couple years ago it cost me $191 to have a bike FedEx'd air from England to Boise, Idaho (it only took two days!). In light of today's collapsing dollar, $272 isn't too far out of line.

AGE / VALUE:   Fixed gear ASC hub posted by: James on 1/26/2004 at 11:51:20 PM
I found this today, thought it was interested. A fixed gear three speed hub. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2220781449&category=420&sspagename=STRK%3AMEBWA%3AIT&rd=1

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Fixed gear ASC hub posted by Edward in Vancouver on 1/27/2004 at 3:13:18 AM
Yeah, they pop up from time to time, Hillary Stone usually seems to offer them, but I've yet to see one in the flesh. These hubs need a special trigger, the regular 3 speed won't work, something to do with the amount of cable played out. Unfortunately this one didn't come with all the "goodies", alloy hub, special wingnuts, trigger, although it did have the quick-release toggle chain.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Fixed gear ASC hub posted by David on 1/28/2004 at 11:52:38 AM
Seller replied that his supplier looked and looked for the trigger but found nothing.

MISC:   What do you read? posted by: Matthew on 1/26/2004 at 6:07:24 PM
Along the lines of the 'other interests' message, what does everyone here read? For cycling I read 'Richrad's New bicycle Book' which I feel is better than the original or the subsequent versions, also The Lucas Cycle Handbook circa 1949. Otherwise I enjoy biographies of ordinary folk, like William Woodruff's 'Road to Nab End' & 'Beyond Nab End' or Billy Hopkins 'High Hopes'. I'm a real bookworm with no TV so have plenty of time to indulge, books are better than telly, the pictures are clearer!

So folks, what do you read?

Matthew, nose in a book.

PS. I also read Mountain Biking UK, my son's regular mag.

   RE:MISC:   What do you read? posted by MR on 1/27/2004 at 1:42:50 AM
Civil war history books, and science fiction.

   RE:RE:MISC:   What do you read? posted by Edward in Vancouver on 1/27/2004 at 3:06:54 AM
Nope, no TV either, not since our 5 yr old blew the set up this summer, but I digress. Lots of cook books, especially historical ones, lotta fortunes made and lost on spices. Just picked a neat oddball, a cheap english translation of a 1 st century Roman cookbook, might want to try something but I dunno if I can ever get mastic or fresh caught anchovies here in Vancouver...

   RE:MISC:   What do you read? posted by Ric Sona on 1/27/2004 at 4:41:43 PM
Talking about spices, Indian curry is my first love. Reading is not my cup of tea, only when I need to refer to some bicycles related repairs....."Kong Xi Fatt Choy"

   RE:RE:MISC:   What do you read? posted by Edward in Vancouver on 1/28/2004 at 12:21:30 AM
Gong Xi, Gong Xi, Ang pau (red packet) Please!...

   RE:MISC: What do you read? posted by Rif on 2/1/2004 at 3:11:08 AM
Hi All,
As far as that goes:
Across America on a Motor Bicycle 1903 (chuckle), mostly Science Fiction and Horror, but also Terry Pratchet's 'Discworld' series (funniest thing to come along since Hitchhiker's Guide and the M.Y.T.H. series by Robert Asprin), also poetry, historical accounts pertaining to motorcycling and bicycling, some adventure stuff, and I still occasionally drag out the ol' Hardy Boys series, Tom Swift Jr. series, the Three Investigators series , and the Mad Scientist Club series. Humorous essays Such as 'In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash" which the film 'A Christmas Story' was based on. I dunno, I read a lot of stuff...

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by: Shreve on 1/21/2004 at 2:45:08 AM
Does anyone know how to get transmission fluid into a sturmey archer hub and whether or not this is an acceptable alternative to the special Sturmey-Archer grease? Also, do most Raleigh Sprites have a grease/oil nipple for the crank(where?) or do you have to take them apart? What sort of oil/grease should I put in a rank on a 67 Sprite?

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Steve on 1/21/2004 at 2:55:33 AM
SA oil is, I believe, a straight 30W mineral oil. I can imagine that any reasonable oil would suffice, including 10-30 engine oil or transmission fluid, since the operating environment does not include high heat. It does require a good film strength. I've thought about using Mobil 1 5-30.
Add the oil using an oil can through the small oil port on the hub shell. About two tablespoons is max. If it leaks out the side, then you've added too much (use rubbing alcohol on a rag to clean it up and especially off the rim braking surface before you apply the brakes.) If the bottom bracket has an oil hole port in the top of the shell, then use that (you can add more oil there using the oil can). Most don't and they must be disassembled and greased using a quality bicycle grease (Park, Phil Wood, Finish Line, etc.) and new bearings. Ditto the headset.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Dick in FL on 1/21/2004 at 7:09:35 AM
If the bottom bracket is not making any metallic noises but is just sticking in spots, it could very well mean that the 37 year old grease it was originally packed with has congealed to the viscosity of maple syrup. This is certainly not worth the travail of a bottom end rebuild. What has worked for me is to withdraw the seatpost from its mast and pour a few tablespoons of something like Marvel Mystery Oil down the tube. In effect, you have coverted the lubrication system from grease back to oil. You will have to spin the crank a few dozen rotations to penetrate the old grease. Expect leakage out the ends.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by David on 1/21/2004 at 5:49:24 PM
I haven't dealt with automatic transmission fluid in quite a while, but I believe it is NOT lubricating oil; rather a type of hydraulic fluid. I would not use it in a SA hub. There are always arguments here about whether or not it's best to use "Sturmey-Archer" oil. There seems to be agreement, though, that 20 or 30 wt motor oil is good. (I use 10W-40, though, with perfectly acceptable results.)

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/21/2004 at 6:23:31 PM
To Dick in Fl,

The bottom bracket does not appear to be sticking at all but I am having serious problems getting the pedals off the crank (maybe internal rust). I don't want to much force either because I'm afraid I might damage something. I like the idea of oiling from the seat post but I am having the same problem with taking off the seatpost (Internal rust). Can I just take the seat itself off and pour the oil down the hole?

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/21/2004 at 6:29:12 PM

Thanks for the help. There seems to be some dispute on transmission fluid but general agreedment on 30 wt motor ooil.

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/21/2004 at 6:38:07 PM

It looks like I have no port access to the crank so my two options are 1) take it apart or 2) do what Dick in Fl said (see above post) which was to pour oil down the seat post tube. Any thoughts on that? The crank turns well, though, no sticking at all; I am just being cautious. Replace the ball bearings?

As for the Sturmey-Archer hub, sounds like 30 weight motor oil is the consensus?

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/21/2004 at 6:52:57 PM

Does anyone have suggestions on restoring a Brooks saddle? I've heard that soaking it in Mink oil brings the leather back to origianl condition, but it leaves a stain on your backside when you ride. Any one have any alternatives on that one or any idea whether soaking in Mink oil works?

   RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Dick in FL on 1/21/2004 at 11:00:58 PM
Remember .... the left side pedal has a *left*-handed thread.

As long as the seatpost is open at the top, you have the access you need. Getting the seatpost free should be a priority, though. Try a product called PB. (Never fails me!) Then use some leverage on vise-grips (A chain link fencepost comes to mind.)to extract the post by twisting back and forth.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Steve on 1/22/2004 at 12:03:07 AM
If the bike has no oil port on the bottom bracket, then it is designed to be greased. Best to pour a penetrating lube down the seat tube to loosen up the threads (PBlaster or LiquidWrench), wait a couple of days, then:
-pull off the left cotter pin and crank arm. The pin can be hammered out (supporting the crank with a block of wood); get a new pin.
-carefully loosen the lock ring using a punch and hammer
-unscrew the left removable bottom bracket cup using a large adjustable wrench to grip it. Clean it carefully and make sure the wrench does not slip and round the flats.
-pull out the shaft and the right crankarm. Get some new bearings from a bike store (quality chrome only); you'll need 22 balls in 1/4 inch size.
-clean everything up with rubbing alcohol and a rag
-Place generous quantities of grease in the cups. Use Phil Wood, Park, or good quality bike grease. Stick 11 balls in the right cup and 11 in the left.
-Re-assemble. Tighten the left cup and lock ring so that there is no play in the axle but it spins freely. The lock ring will loosen the cup when it is punched home, so adjust the cup firstly a little tight and then tighten the lock ring while holding the cup. You will need extra hands.
-reinstall the crank arm and cotter pin. The nut side of the cotter pin is up when the crank is facing forward.

This will keep you going. No need to add oil to the bottom bracket; just disassemble and regrease according to use (I do mine every two years).

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/22/2004 at 12:30:23 AM

just to add some information. The bike has only been ridden once since it was made, seriously. Do I really have to pull everything apart and put in new ball bearings? Or can I just get by with some liquidwrench down the seat post? Everything seems to be turning perfectly!

   RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Shreve on 1/22/2004 at 12:34:35 AM
Dick in Fl,

Sorry for the confusion about the pedals. I meant I'm having trouble getting the crank arms off. The cotter pins won't budge.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Steve on 1/22/2004 at 1:59:00 PM
Unfortunately, you do. My experience (and I once rebuilt a 30-year old Raleigh Pro that had been sitting in the attic after being ridden only 50-60 miles) is that grease hardens into a tar-like substance that is very hard and tough to remove. Oil will eventually soften it, but certainly will not renew the lubrication since the soap separates from the oil base. Best to disassemble, clean thoroughly, and renew it.

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Edward in Vancouver on 1/22/2004 at 8:45:46 PM
In Regards to the Brooks seat (B72 or 66?)stay away from Mink or Neates foot oil. Yes, these do penetrate and soften, but they soften in the same way Papaya enzymes "tenderize" meat, they turn into mush. The use of these oils will "tenderize" the leather and weaken it at the stress points (ie copper rivets).
Nope, best thing to use is Brooks Proofide. Sit in front of the TV, and take your time massageing it in.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Patrick on 1/23/2004 at 11:44:50 PM
I have something cool to inject oil into the S-A hub and BB oiler. After I took my dog to the vet for a checkup and to get dewormed I kept the special syringe for injecting the worm medicine in Fido's mouth. After I cleaned it out I put 10w30 motor oil in it and I can measure exactly how much oil I can inject since it's marked in CC's. The end of the syringe is just the right size to fit the end of the oilers.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Steve on 1/24/2004 at 5:52:57 PM
To remove stuck cotter pins:
-first make sure you have a new set on hand
-install the fixing nut flush with the threaded end of the pin
-soak the pin/crank in PBlaster or Liquid Wrench for a day
-support the crank arm with a block of wood
-use a ball-peen hammer to knock the cotter pin loose
-If still stuck, try heating the pin with a torch, then while it is cooling spray more PBlaster penetrating oil. Apply an ice cube to the end of the pin to shrink it as much as possible and hit it again.
-It will eventually come out. Just make sure your blows are transmitted through the crank arm to the wood and not to the bearings.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by GMS on 1/25/2004 at 11:58:59 PM
The cotter pin removal is an age old topic here. Theres always the cotter pin press, and the hammer. Usually the pins are stuck, and the press is the best way. But not everybody has the tool(i dont) So just put some good penetrating lube on them. Let it soak in for a good while. Then try tapping them out. If this doesn't work. Use a torch and carefuly warm them up. Heat is actually the best way to get out hard bolts and even cotter pins. Hey. this worked for me, but other people may have other ideas for you, just be careful not to damage your precious bike;)

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:  No! No dissemble! posted by Chris on 1/26/2004 at 6:55:14 PM
Raleigh Sprite, very good parts bicycle! Yum!

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Working on a Raleigh Sprite posted by Lincoln on 1/27/2004 at 5:00:13 PM
I used to use gear oil,and it worked fine for many miles, but I guess that's heavier than it needs to be.

On the cranks, if it was my bike and everything felt smooth, I think I'd just dump some heavy oil down the seat post, unless I was doing some kind of fancy restoration. But I'm no expert.

If I had to remove cranks, I think I wouldn't try to do it without the proper tools, but close to me, in Cambridge, MA a shop called Broadway Bike School has the tools and will let people use them for a fee. Advice too. Maybe there's a good shop close to you? MUCH easier with the right tools (whose names I don't know). But I still dislike cottered cranks.

MISC:   Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by: James on 1/20/2004 at 8:12:59 PM
I found an interesting EU comission chart showing per capita bicycle use in km/year in EU countries

its near the bottom of the page.

Notice how Holland leads with over 1000km/year, Denmark also scores high. These are countries where internal gear hubs dominate and the local Raleigh subsidiaries still make Roadsters with AW hubs. France, the land of the derailleur, scores low with 87km/year. Evidence that there is a posiltive correlation between bicycle use and the use of Internal gear hubs.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by Phil Deaves on 1/21/2004 at 8:32:17 AM
Regrettably also in the UK. The general public tar the sensible riders with the same brush as the idiots. Granted, sensible riders are a minority.



   RE:RE:RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by David Poston on 1/21/2004 at 6:13:16 PM
Yes, but here in the US the government doesn't respect cyclists, only automobiles, in terms of road construction, etc., so I have little remorse when people do break the laws.

Here in Houston, we have almost zero places for cyclists to ride, so we end up on sidewalks and freeway feeder roads.


   RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by Warren on 1/21/2004 at 12:00:46 AM
Countries who've embraced cycling into their everyday cultures have gravitated to using low maintainence gearing systems. Single speeds, internal hub gears and enclosed chaincases are "de rigeur". I've toured in both Denmark and Holland and it's remarkable the extent to which their governments have integrated cycling into the transportation networks, allowing everyone to ride safely, sharing the roads with pedestrians and cars, trains, trams etc. North America could use a little more socialism in it's democracies.

   RE:RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by P.C. Kohler on 1/21/2004 at 2:51:43 AM
And dare I also add that these very same cycle champion countries are ones in which cyclists respect and obey the law and the traffic code. Unlike in the USA where 97.87 per cent of cyclists flout the law yet expect the same "rights" as bona fide road users.

P.C. Kohler

   RE:RE:RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by Ken on 1/22/2004 at 6:59:22 PM
David et al, please note the correlation between safe cyclists and those who behave correctly in traffic, rendering both respect and and a sense of belonging which are reflected in drivers' behavior. See
(Note also the positive correlation between cycling on sidewalks and accidents with injury.) Respect can be earned but cannot be stolen.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC: Bicycle Use and Gear hubs posted by P.C Kohler on 1/22/2004 at 7:59:54 PM
Exactly Ken..

As a cyclist and a pedestrian (I do not own a car and do not know how to drive either!), I have been far more imperiled by rude and immature cyclists than motorists. It just amazes me how many cyclists think the law applies to everyone but them yet they are always the ones crying for "respect". As you say, earn it.

P.C. Kohler

AGE / VALUE:   miller generator light set posted by: marc on 1/19/2004 at 10:39:32 PM
would anyone care to speculate how much a nice miller light set is worth. Its from the 60's I think. Front lens is glass with the miller logo on it, the rear is plastic. Chrome is near perfect. I got it off of a 67 schwinn varsity.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:���miller generator light set posted by Warren on 1/20/2004 at 12:14:04 AM
It's an item that appears with regularity on ebay, often NIB. They rarely get more than $20. They made millions of these and I think that's no exageration.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:���miller generator light set posted by Chris on 1/23/2004 at 10:01:26 PM
True. However these are still very cool and they have a ting of magic to them. Miller made bells and a wide variety of lights and I suggest collecting everything made by Miller. I have! As you come across more cool old British bicycles you will see more Miller sets here and there and some of them will go higher than $20.00 on e- bay.
Happy hunting, good luck. Please save these from destruction. Yes, it is true thay made a lot of these, but still, they are getting scarce and rare. No longer made and rarely found unless you go onto e- bay.