AGE / VALUE:   English Roadster posted by: Sarah Myers on 3/13/2008 at 1:00:06 PM
My father has a vintage English Roadster mens' bicycle. It was made in Nottingham, England. The serial number that i found located behind the seat is: 2342170. it is in almost excellent condition. We are looking to find out the price and year of the bike. Any help you can give us will be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   English Roadster posted by Kevin on 3/14/2008 at 3:15:01 AM
Search "Raleigh," "Humber" and "English bicycle" on eBay, under "Completed Auctions" for an up-to-the-minute report on what they're fetching these days.

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cottered cranks posted by: Ed on 3/11/2008 at 3:06:55 PM
How hard should we drive the cotter into the crank? I think I have been smashing the cotter in too hard with a hammer. The cotters are way too hard to remove. What is your opinion? Ed

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cottered cranks posted by Warren on 3/11/2008 at 4:49:24 PM
The proper way to do it is with a cotter press. A good substitute is a C clamp. This is for both installation and removal. Not to say that I haven't used a hammer (as a newbie) but hit it too hard and you'll start deforming bottom bracket shells, chipping bearings or races and if you miss you can really do damage. Installing it with a clamp or press will also make regular maintenance a breeze. There's a gentleman making his own presses on the a search or someone can help you out.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cottered cranks posted by Ed on 3/11/2008 at 6:15:22 PM
I always support the arm with a pipe to keep the bearings from being damaged so that the force is directed to the floor. How would you know what force is applied to the pin with the press or hammer? My press can crush the pin if i so wanted. I think i will try to just apply enough force to set the pin without deforming it. Easy to say than to do. Ed

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cottered cranks posted by sciencemonster on 3/11/2008 at 9:20:37 PM
I use a piece of wood with a hole drilled in the top for the bottom of the pin to fit in, placed under the crank to take the weight of the bike - as you do - and then alwo use a big old hanging metal punch to drive the pin down and out. Hammering directly on the pin didn't work for me - I might hit the bike.

Without the support under the crank, I cracked a BB axle.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cottered cranks posted by Steve on 3/12/2008 at 2:05:38 AM
Interesting comments and useful advice.

I have on more than one occasion (rightly or wrongly) had to get the flame thrower out just to tickle things along a little.
I'm referring to the little heat gun not the oxyacetylene !

I had been using a punch but will try the other suggestions next time.


   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cottered cranks posted by Warrren on 3/12/2008 at 3:49:10 AM
Slight deformation is the objective because the shear angle and profile on cotter pins vary and won't be an exact match for the axle/crank surfaces. That's why they make the pins so soft. They're really meant to be used once and discarded. However, I have a stash of older pins that are much harder and I find that when installed properly with a press, they can be removed and reused. They just pop out.

You can't measure the insallation with a torque wrench. Install the pins until there's no play when you wriggle both crankarms and cinch it once more and put the nuts on with washers. Don't torque the nuts down too tight.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cottered cranks posted by David on 3/12/2008 at 8:14:30 AM
Don't think you're going to get the cotter in properly by using the nut to tighten it. It must be pressed or driven in tightly before the nut is tightened. And after you've ridden it a ways, you should repeat the tightening process. They will come loose and the cotter (or even non-expendable parts) can be damaged if the crank wiggles on the spindle for a while.

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cottered cranks posted by Thom J. on 3/12/2008 at 1:18:22 PM
Ed- If you're going to do any future work on cottered crank bikes, it's definately worth the investment in a cotter pin press. I purchased mine from Bikesmith Design and can highly recommend it. Thom.

WANTED:   Raleigh Twenty front fork posted by: Kurt K. on 3/11/2008 at 11:09:31 AM
Hello all,

Forgive me for littering the forum with a wanted ad, but I'm seeking a Raleigh Twenty front fork - condition, preferably as ugly and as rusty as possible. Paint color unimportant.

If you've got one...feel free to email me here:

@ a-o-l.(you know what follows)

Take care,


ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by: Steve on 3/11/2008 at 8:40:14 AM
I have this strange urge to purchase two whitewall tyres and fit them to the Raleigh Sports model I acquired last weekend.

Is this the first signs of madness starting to appear (you must remember I have a garage full of black's like a scene from an English industrial town bike shed in the 1950s) or is it a perfectly normal/allowable thing to do ?

1. Is white a real pain to keep clean ?
2. Were whitewalls available for bikes in 1937 ?
3. Did Raleigh ever fit whitewalls ?
4. What bikes traditionally have tended to use whitewalls ?

5. I was caught looking at a frame last night with a magnifying glass - my wife is starting to look at me in a strange way - is this normal ???

5. What is normal ?

Steve - I've had a long day !


   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by David on 3/11/2008 at 11:24:35 AM
Ordinary household cleaners seem to do a good job on whitewalls - avoid oily cleaners, of course. I can't help you on the 30s Q, but whitewalls were popular on American middleweights and ballooners; and they were OE on some Raleigh Sports in mid-60s (I know, I had some). They were often seen on the more flashy Sports models like the chrome-fendered Hercules. When Nashbar had WW 650Bs, I put 'em on my 57 Schwinn T&C tandem (black and chrome) and I think they look very sharp! Go for it!

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by Matthew on 3/11/2008 at 11:31:31 AM
1. Ask a cricketer's wife
2. I don't know - excused on age grounds
3. Oh yes, even on my twenty!
4. Flashy ones.
5. Normal-ish for an Oldroads DB contributor.
5. Numerate is normal!

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by Steve on 3/11/2008 at 4:34:58 PM
Wife has just stated to me that she thinks I'm "fairly normal" !
Is that similar to being a little bit pregnant ?

I was then ordered to stop behaving strangely and go and check her front tyre (the one with the silly non-Woods valve - her words not mine) or else I'll be in the 1950s English industrial town bike shed for the night !


   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by David on 3/12/2008 at 8:15:23 AM
Here's a good example of a flashy Sports with WWs!

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Whitewall tyres/tires. posted by Larry "Boneman" Bone on 3/12/2008 at 10:53:23 AM
Excellent post. Got me wound up for certain. As to whitewalls on a Roadster... here's my 5-speed Sprite in White:

I think it's pretty sharp... but I guess that's all subject to one's personal tastes, eh?


Larry "Boneman" Bone

ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cheap at twice the price! posted by: JDuck on 3/11/2008 at 8:16:07 AM
Check this out. No bids yet!

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS:   Cheap at twice the price! posted by David on 3/11/2008 at 11:29:40 AM
Email the seller and tell him to lower the starting price. I think he's wasting his time at that price, but then you never know when someone will come along who hasn't done his homework or who "just has to have that bike."

   RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cheap at twice the price! posted by Matthew on 3/11/2008 at 11:35:21 AM
There's an old music hall song, 'Never in a month of Sundays'. I think that applies in this case.

Matthew - do I see $700 anywhere?

   RE:RE:ENGLISH ROADSTERS: Cheap at twice the price! posted by Larry "Boneman" Bone on 3/12/2008 at 10:57:26 AM
A fine example... can't tell but methinks it's a Superbe? And yes... a bit overpriced for certain.....

But then... someone (I forget whom) once put forth the proposition that "No politician ever went broke by underestimating the stupidity of the American voter."


Larry "Boneman" Bone - expensive taste... NOT