old old bike

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by MadMaxed, Mar 20, 2015.

  1. MadMaxed

    MadMaxed New Member

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    Not sure what to categorize this bike as but found it. Figured it would be worth sharing.

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    Anyone know what I might have came across
     
  2. Motojoe2492

    Motojoe2492 New Member

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    That thing is classy! I think it would make a cool rat bike!
     
  3. MadMaxed

    MadMaxed New Member

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    Thats exactly what I was thinking joe. Just have to get all of the lever working and pedals. Look at this break system
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  4. MadMaxed

    MadMaxed New Member

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    20150320_191957.jpg
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    As far as I can tell no welds
     
  5. Motojoe2492

    Motojoe2492 New Member

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    Wow, so cool! That brake is quite the concept hahahah
     
  6. Intrepid Wheelwoman

    Intrepid Wheelwoman New Member

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    It's a rod braked gents Raleigh Sports from the 1950s. I used to own the ladies version until somebody made me an offer on it which was too good to refuse.
    It should clean up very nicely and be a really good sound bike. Thanks to the Chinese all the rod brake parts are totally available and quite cheaply too. I prefer rod brakes as when they're properly set up they are a darn good brake.

    The rear rim is the correct Westwood type and is most probably original. Somebody has fitted a later 1960s front wheel to it though which is the wrong rim type for rod brakes. The pedals are modern replacements too as the originals didn't have reflectors.
    If that is a three speed hub on the rear wheel it should have a month/year stamping on it which should help to more accurately date the bike.
    The mudguards are originals too which is good because those particular ones aren't easy to find.

    Look after this bike and treat it nicely or I'll have to come over there and box your ears for you ;)
     
  7. bairdco

    bairdco a guy who makes cool bikes

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    it may be newer than that. raleigh made rod brake bikes into the 70's. it has a front reflector mount, too, so the pedals might be original (reflectors became mandatory in the US in the 70's, so if it's an import model it would come with them.)

    it has "no welds" you can see because it's a lugged frame. the tubes are brazed into the lugs..

    cool bike. not exceptionally rare. they made that style for 50 years.

    tires are an odd 26x1 -1/4 or 1 -3/8. which can be hard to find. schwinn used the same numbers, but the tires are different diameter.
     
  8. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Active Member

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    When I was a kid, those were called lightweights. They were lighter than a beach cruiser but not as light as a racer. That lugged Raleigh frame is sweet.
     
  9. Ludwig II

    Ludwig II Well-Known Member

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    One of my two ongoing projects uses a 1940s Raleigh. Their "lightweight" is still a lump of very high quality metal. The rim for the front should be reasonably simple to find, and if the guards haven't rotted, they will be substantial enough to demolish small buldings :)
     
  10. Intrepid Wheelwoman

    Intrepid Wheelwoman New Member

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    True enough bairdco, that's why it would be a good idea to check out the date stamps on the rear wheel hub.
    Tyres in those sizes can be purchased from China by the way.

    Lugged frames are the best :D
     
  11. MadMaxed

    MadMaxed New Member

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    Im looking to restore to to original as possible i love the vintage look it has. I am going to check it for cracks. as far as painting it i think i will just leave it rusted. Then eventually motorize it. For sure a sweet ride and got it for only $20
     
  12. kevyleven007

    kevyleven007 Active Member

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    What you have is a real English racer. Those bikes were built to last a hundred years. I would say you scored bigtime.
     
  13. Nashville Kat

    Nashville Kat Active Member

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    Call the Midwife!

    I wouldn't worry about restoring it to original- It should be a good motor anyway-

    I'd use a 50cc for less weight and vibration , on a vintage lugged and brazed frame like that. The 3 speed frames are fairly beefy compared to a vintage road frame

    I'd set it up with some modern alloy rimmed 700C wheels and go with about some 32mm wide tires (approx. 1 1/4 inches) with a good road pattern, not gnarly, for a smooth roll. I think three speed hubs can be hard to sprocket, and even then, an old one like that might be the weak link for problems later. Use the search engine here to research the topic if you are thinking of using the rear hub- I'd urge you not to, and to dump the fenders- they'll just be a clearance problem on this frame.

    With a 36 sprocket rear gear- it would get you up to 25 mph nicely and yet still be lightweight
    A smooth sided fixie hub can be drilled and directly bolted with some titanium bolts for ultimate weight savings

    You may be able to eliminate the motor chain tensioner by matching the chains with half-links, but diamond frames have a little less chain clearance than cruiser frames, so keep the tires narrow.

    I'd probably also try to get a new bottom bracket and spindle and a lightweight single sprocket alloy three piece crank. Those are usually about 46-44 teeth, so you'll need a 22 tooth rear pedal sprocket to give you a nice easy pedal,

    a shock seat post is nice too and not that expensive, and with a good padded cruiser saddle it should be a fairly comfortable ride.

    I'd use a smaller tank- pedaling can be a problem on a diamond frame, with the tank in the way
    and they quit making an underbar tank years ago now.

    You may want a rear rack tank or some other place like under the saddle.

    There's also electric hubs, if you are determined to restore it as original otherwise.

    good luck
     
    #13 Nashville Kat, Mar 27, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2015
  14. Intrepid Wheelwoman

    Intrepid Wheelwoman New Member

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    The Society Against Cruelty to Old Bicycles will be knocking on your door any moment Nashville Kat!

    Grrrr........ some folk don't deserve the honor of owning such a fine machine.
     
  15. boxcar

    boxcar New Member

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    You go girl.......



    And when you'r all done you will have a modern fixy or single speed diamond framed bicycle to motorize. Available at any retailer for just over $100.....

    Not meaning to offend or be argumentative here BUT:
    If it were me. Which it is not.....
    And I was going to motorize a fairly rare rod brake roadster bike.
    I'd figure out a way to do it without removing everything that makes it a fairly rare rod brake roadster bicycle.
    After all, that's why it is so cool.....
    I'm not a bicycle purest or snob.
    I wouldn't be motorizing bicycles at all
    if I were.
    But there are limits to my insanity....
     
  16. sboricic123

    sboricic123 Member

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    There may be a serial number stamped on the bicycle too.
     
  17. Nashville Kat

    Nashville Kat Active Member

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    Well, I even assembled and sold some Raleigh 3 speeds back in the early 70's- there's certainly nothing that is sacred about STEEL 1 3/8 x 26 tires. They are harder to find, offer no choice of width and STEEL rims that are obsolete otherwise. The blessing here is that 700c wheels and tires WILL fit, and allow more modern and shorter lightweight alloy brake calipers. The spokes and nipples probably have their fair share of rust. Like I said- mounting a sprocket on a three speed hub is an extra affair, and if you succeed, you've spent time and effort on very old hub with complicated internal parts more prone to fail.

    Fenders on motorbikes are nice only if you plan on riding in the rain- I avoid that myself, and mainly for the bikes sake. On a motor build they are usually in the way clearance wise and often have to be cut up for the chain to clear.

    That only leaves the frame and bars and cranks- cotter pins were a hassle back in the 70's even when all three sizes were available, and the tend to go bad quickly again, leaving the VERY heavy steel 3 piece cranks to do that irritating slipping bit when the pins wear. A modern single sprocket crank is much much lighter and not that expensive, plus you won't have to adapt the bottom bracket otherwise to replace. The old steel chain wheels were oversized for the 3 speed hub- 48 teeth or more, so without the hub it's going to be heavy hard peddling. The rubber pedals are HEAVY and wear out quickly- there's a world of alloy pedal choice that's come along since

    These are the changes that people seriously still riding internal hub bikes usually opt for these days. The hubs can have 8 internal gears- but I've never ridden one.

    With a small 50 or electric motor, you could set up a bike that appears similar to the original 3 speed, but is significantly lighter beyond the original, before motoring. Maybe 20 25 less weight.

    alloy bars and stem would help too and be similar otherwise. Personally I've always gone with alloy BMX bars and stems for even more height, and still get great speed to have a lightweight and very peddable moped otherwise.

    the rod brakes are quaint and cool for an antique, but better and lighter brakes and levers are available , and your life may be riding on them otherwise

    It's a good frame otherwise and if you just want a restored 3 speed bike, then do that.

    If I could do a dream machine- I'd put a 33 cc China girl on it - for even LESS weight and LESS noise- with an under bar PLASTIC TANK and cap- one liter MAX- for weight reduction., so the kit would add no more than 15 pounds and the bikes final weight would be about 40-45 pounds Total. Not an off road thing by any means, just an efficient communter as this was designed to be originally with the best technology they could muster back in the 1930's or there about when the 3 speeds were designed.

    The basic idea is still the same- go as far as you can with the least effort..ride9
     
    #17 Nashville Kat, Mar 31, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2015
  18. boxcar

    boxcar New Member

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    We used to say the same thing about 55 Chevy's and 49 Fords in the 70's.
    **** the damn thing only cost me $500 why not cut it up after all it's just a Belair.......
     
  19. Intrepid Wheelwoman

    Intrepid Wheelwoman New Member

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    Nashville, I don't know where you were buying your old three speed bikes from, but they must've been real rubbish. The English made bikes I ride regularly are 60-70 years old and they don't give me any trouble at all.

    1 & 3/8 x 26 tyres are easy to get from China by the way.
     
  20. Nashville Kat

    Nashville Kat Active Member

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    I don't buy old 3 speed bikes generally- but I did a Huffy sportsman a couple years back- didn't like it much.

    I grew up racing full Campy Nuovo and Super Record Gitane, Colnago Exxon Graftek and Masi road bikes, and a Paramount track bike.

    Thank god for 700 c tires and rims, but anything not made of alloy is just dead weight. We used to have a saying racing "An ounce off the wheels is worth two off the frame".

    To me the game is always the same whether pedaling, motorized biking or even in my car: Go as far as you can with the least effort or energy.
     

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