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Old 07-01-07, 07:28 PM   #1
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Some nitpicking questions for someone who really know Raleigh Sports

I finally completed the first of those three Raleigh 3-speeds I was given (don't ask, picture to follow in the next 48 hours, however, it's awful common). Now this one has a sticker on it that claims it was built under license in Thailand, the SA hub says 71, and it's a little different from the Sports model as I remember them.

First off, there's no 2030 tubing decal. No headlight spade. The rims are definitely not the fluted cross section Raleigh rims, just a heavy gauge cheaper looking things. No Brooks B-66/72, a plastic covered cheaper Brooks model instead. No cable adjusters on the brake levers.

Actually, despite the proper Raleigh Sports decals, this thing comes off a lot closer to a mid-70's LTD-3, or even an early 70's Triumph/Dunelt in equipment. Anyone have a clue on this, was it common? When I worked at the shop, the only Sports we got in were Nottingham built models.

Happily, the coffee girl's bike, proper Nottingham built, while too far cosmetically gone to bother refurbishing still has cleanable chrome, so the headlight spade and front wheel have already been replaced, and once I finish cleaning the rear wheel, it'll go on, too.

By the way, for those of you privy to the discussion of turning this bike into a clubman replica: I gave it a shot and found out that the frame geometry was all wrong for drop bars and a racing stem. I did get the three cog gear for the SA, and found a nice Huret Svelto, so I'll still be doing the conversion sometime in the future, but first off I want to get that LTD-3 finished. These bikes are going to be our paddock transportation for the Superbike races at VIR next month.
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Old 07-01-07, 09:55 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by sykerocker
I finally completed the first of those three Raleigh 3-speeds I was given (don't ask, picture to follow in the next 48 hours, however, it's awful common). Now this one has a sticker on it that claims it was built under license in Thailand, the SA hub says 71, and it's a little different from the Sports model as I remember them.

First off, there's no 2030 tubing decal. No headlight spade. The rims are definitely not the fluted cross section Raleigh rims, just a heavy gauge cheaper looking things. No Brooks B-66/72, a plastic covered cheaper Brooks model instead. No cable adjusters on the brake levers.

Actually, despite the proper Raleigh Sports decals, this thing comes off a lot closer to a mid-70's LTD-3, or even an early 70's Triumph/Dunelt in equipment. Anyone have a clue on this, was it common? When I worked at the shop, the only Sports we got in were Nottingham built models.

Happily, the coffee girl's bike, proper Nottingham built, while too far cosmetically gone to bother refurbishing still has cleanable chrome, so the headlight spade and front wheel have already been replaced, and once I finish cleaning the rear wheel, it'll go on, too.

By the way, for those of you privy to the discussion of turning this bike into a clubman replica: I gave it a shot and found out that the frame geometry was all wrong for drop bars and a racing stem. I did get the three cog gear for the SA, and found a nice Huret Svelto, so I'll still be doing the conversion sometime in the future, but first off I want to get that LTD-3 finished. These bikes are going to be our paddock transportation for the Superbike races at VIR next month.

The easiest way to date a Nottingham Raleigh is to check the Sturmey Archer hub. If its original, that's certainly the year the bike was built. I have the high end version, the Raleigh Superbe.
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Old 07-02-07, 02:28 AM   #3
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Skye,
Don't know about the made in Taiwan sticker. I do know that the 1971ish Raleigh's did not have the big black brake adjusters. IIRC those came out in 1974. I have a bike of similar design including the non Raleigh pattern rims that dates from the same era. However mine has no hub date. There was a Sports Standard listed in the catalogs around 1970 and it came with the Endrick rims which are the smooth centered. It apparently was a very base model. Pictures will help when we can see the decals.

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Old 07-02-07, 05:36 AM   #4
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Here's a quote from Tony Hadland's history of Raleigh article:

"In the USA between 1970 and 1972, demand for lightweight ten-speed cycles increased forty-fold. Raleigh Record and Grand Prix models, based on Carlton designs, sold there in massive numbers. At one point they were being made in Nottingham, at Worksop (by Carlton), in the Netherlands by Gazelle, by Raleigh Ireland and possibly even in Malaysia."

So if those models were being made in Asia, why not the Sports? And as Aaron noted, the Sports in those years would not have had the black plastic self-adjusting brake cable gizmos.

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Old 07-09-07, 09:03 PM   #5
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OK, I finally got around today to taking a few pictures of the bike. Here's a general view:



and a mid-shot that shows all three decal groups:



Now, I've done a few upgrades from the original bike-as-found: The front wheel is now the one that came from the genuine Nottingham coffee girls bike, the rear will follow as soon as I figure out why the hub isn't shifting. The headlight spade was also added. I'm looking for a B-66 or B-72 to finish it, as well as some better, Nottingham grips to replace the cheapies it now has.

OK, any further guesses? As a quick reiteration, the bike is stickered as made under license in Malaysia (not Thailand as I originally incorrectly listed), rims, grips lack of a headlight spade, and lack of the '2030' tubing label indicate LTD or possibly Triumph/Dunelt, yet the bike is clearly labeled Sports.

I don't remember ever seeing any of these back when I was at the shop. We either got the genuine Nottingham article, Triumph/Dunelts, or, about the time I drifted out of the business, LTD-3's.
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Old 07-10-07, 10:05 AM   #6
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That's an early 70s style crankset (with those three V-shaped cutouts), brake levers, and decals. I would expect the gear cable to be routed on the downtube rather than the top-tube. Looks like a Sports, smells like a Sports . . . must be a Sports!

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Old 07-10-07, 10:12 AM   #7
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I still think it is a "Sports Standard" read the fine print at the bottom of the page...

Aaron
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Old 07-10-07, 10:25 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nlerner
That's an early 70s style crankset (with those three V-shaped cutouts), brake levers, and decals. I would expect the gear cable to be routed on the downtube rather than the top-tube. Looks like a Sports, smells like a Sports . . . must be a Sports!

Neal
Neal,
IIRC that is the same place the cable on my Sports is routed...and my Superbe. The only ones I have ever seen routed on the down tube are on the ladies frames.

Aaron
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Old 07-10-07, 10:31 AM   #9
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Here is a picture of mine, the fork and one pedal are not original. But as far as I know the rest is, it was purchased from a pawn shop in 1982 for $25, and has had not had a gentle life. It spent 15 years as a general purpose commuter for both me and my brother. Probably racking up over 30,000 miles.

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Old 07-10-07, 11:03 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by wahoonc
Neal,
IIRC that is the same place the cable on my Sports is routed...and my Superbe. The only ones I have ever seen routed on the down tube are on the ladies frames.

Aaron
Woops! My bad, Aaron. I'll blame it on a lack of sleep (rather than early senility).

Neal
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Old 07-10-07, 05:38 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by wahoonc
I still think it is a "Sports Standard" read the fine print at the bottom of the page...

Aaron
Yep, that seems to describe it very well. It's funny I never saw one in all those years at the shop. Then again Merle, the boss, LOVED the Sports, considered the 10-speeds a very unfortunate fad, and probably wasn't all that interested in carrying a mid-line 3-speed. No doubt we were doing as well as could be expected with the fancy Sports and the B-line bikes. Add in a cheapo Japanese copy of the B-line bikes with Shimano 3-speed (called a Kent, if memory serves), and we were set. Start at $60.00, end at $95.00 or so, and the Raleigh Record and Sprint 10 came in at $100.00.
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Old 07-10-07, 05:41 PM   #12
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Took yesterday off from work (my birthday) loaded the Sports in the pickup and headed over to Ashland, VA for a pleasant afternoon's riding. The town is one of those perfect places for a 3-speed roadster, both in terrain, appearance and attitude. Had a pleasant day for about an hour, then I punctured the rear tyre. Of course, this was the first time I went riding without patch kit and essential tools. Fortunately the truck was only parked an hour away.

Once I got used to the different handling, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I'm now started on the LTD-3 (hopefully) for the wife.
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Old 07-10-07, 05:46 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sykerocker
Took yesterday off from work (my birthday) loaded the Sports in the pickup and headed over to Ashland, VA for a pleasant afternoon's riding. The town is one of those perfect places for a 3-speed roadster, both in terrain, appearance and attitude. Had a pleasant day for about an hour, then I punctured the rear tyre. Of course, this was the first time I went riding without patch kit and essential tools. Fortunately the truck was only parked an hour away.

Once I got used to the different handling, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I'm now started on the LTD-3 (hopefully) for the wife.
That is a very nice area to ride in...haven't been up that way in a couple of years. Now you can see why many of love the old classic Raleigh 3 speed

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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

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Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 07-10-07, 05:59 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by wahoonc
Neal,
IIRC that is the same place the cable on my Sports is routed...and my Superbe. The only ones I have ever seen routed on the down tube are on the ladies frames.

Aaron
I've been paying a lot of attention to cable routing on Raleigh three speeds lately because I'm building my take on a Clubman and that's just not true. I've seen down tube routing of the shifter cable on both early and late Raleghs.

Here's a for instance:

My Raleigh Roadster - Repaint, or what?

I think the down tube routing is neater, but I kind of like the pulley at the top of the seat tube.
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Old 07-10-07, 06:09 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirtdrop
I've been paying a lot of attention to cable routing on Raleigh three speeds lately because I'm building my take on a Clubman and that's just not true. I've seen down tube routing of the shifter cable on both early and late Raleghs.

Here's a for instance:

My Raleigh Roadster - Repaint, or what?

I think the down tube routing is neater, but I kind of like the pulley at the top of the seat tube.
I said "all that I have seen"...maybe check out the pictures of all the bikes from the various ABCE Tours I don't doubt some have been routed differently but I think that they came from the factory with the cable routed along the top tube. On the very old ones (not sure of the year >1950? ) they actually had a stud brazed on the frame for the jockey wheel. Then they switched over to the clamp on. Of the 9 three speeds that I have here all of the mens frames have the wheel at the top, the womens all have it run along the down tube with the pulley at the bottom. Personally I prefer it along the top tube keeps it cleaner. The one men's bike with the low routing in the thread you referenced appears to be a bit of an anomaly. In the ABCE archives there is a 1954 similar to that one and the cable is run along the top tube.

Aaron
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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
_krazygluon

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Old 07-10-07, 06:37 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by wahoonc
I said "all that I have seen"...maybe check out the pictures of all the bikes from the various ABCE Tours I don't doubt some have been routed differently but I think that they came from the factory with the cable routed along the top tube. On the very old ones (not sure of the year >1950? ) they actually had a stud brazed on the frame for the jockey wheel. Then they switched over to the clamp on. Of the 9 three speeds that I have here all of the mens frames have the wheel at the top, the womens all have it run along the down tube with the pulley at the bottom. Personally I prefer it along the top tube keeps it cleaner. The one men's bike with the low routing in the thread you referenced appears to be a bit of an anomaly. In the ABCE archives there is a 1954 similar to that one and the cable is run along the top tube.

Aaron
That's not the only one I've seen, but I won't bother finding more examples. Your mind is obviously made up.
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Old 07-10-07, 06:48 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Dirtdrop
That's not the only one I've seen, but I won't bother finding more examples. Your mind is obviously made up.
My mind is not "obviously" made up, but you have given me one example. I just went and ran thru about 60 pictures of different 3 speeds produced in England from around 1935-1984 and could only find one men's frame that might be routed on the downtube it was a Red Dunelt, but I couldn't tell for sure because the picture was taken from the non drive side. I think it would be safe to say that the bulk of the English built 3 speed men's framed bikes had the shifter cable routed along the top tube. There may be exceptions to that or possibly an owner chose to re-route the cable that way for some reason. Also the one referenced in the thread does not have a pulley it has the long casing cable similar to what was used on the RSW of the same era. It is a full housing cable that is clamped near the rear axle.

Aaron
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Old 07-10-07, 07:01 PM   #18
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Old 07-10-07, 07:21 PM   #19
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That is two...and I have actually ridden that bike...

Aaron
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Old 07-10-07, 09:58 PM   #20
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Here is 2 more both are factory originals, the 74 Raleigh is made in Canada. The 71 New Hudson Made in England.
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Old 07-15-07, 02:46 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sykerocker
Yep, that seems to describe it very well. It's funny I never saw one in all those years at the shop. Then again Merle, the boss, LOVED the Sports, considered the 10-speeds a very unfortunate fad, and probably wasn't all that interested in carrying a mid-line 3-speed. No doubt we were doing as well as could be expected with the fancy Sports and the B-line bikes. Add in a cheapo Japanese copy of the B-line bikes with Shimano 3-speed (called a Kent, if memory serves), and we were set. Start at $60.00, end at $95.00 or so, and the Raleigh Record and Sprint 10 came in at $100.00.
Guess what I found today...I dug my old Raleigh out of the shed and it does have the made under license in Malaysia sticker on it...I had not take a close look at that bike in a quite a while...So it looks like perhaps the Sports Standard was made in Malaysia with the regular Sports and Superbe being made in Nottingham?

Something else for Kurt to add to the data base

Aaron
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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

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RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 07-15-07, 10:20 PM   #22
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Thanks for the addition - it goes a long way towards explaining why I never saw one in the shop. Merle take on a bike that was built in the east? No way. We didn't start dealing Japanese 10-speeds until early in the 70's, and then only begrudgingly because we couldn't keep up with demand on our other lines. Back then, he still considered Toyota's and Datsun's poorly built Asian trash. OK, he was a designer for Ford in the 50's before coming back to take over the family business . . . . .

This could also explain why the Sports Standard sorta disappeared and was seemingly replaced by the LTD-3. Which had identical specs, but seems to have been built in England. At least I never saw one with an Asian license sticker on it.

Anyone have any information/guesses on that one?
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Old 07-16-07, 03:22 AM   #23
wahoonc
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Originally Posted by sykerocker
Thanks for the addition - it goes a long way towards explaining why I never saw one in the shop. Merle take on a bike that was built in the east? No way. We didn't start dealing Japanese 10-speeds until early in the 70's, and then only begrudgingly because we couldn't keep up with demand on our other lines. Back then, he still considered Toyota's and Datsun's poorly built Asian trash. OK, he was a designer for Ford in the 50's before coming back to take over the family business . . . . .

This could also explain why the Sports Standard sorta disappeared and was seemingly replaced by the LTD-3. Which had identical specs, but seems to have been built in England. At least I never saw one with an Asian license sticker on it.

Anyone have any information/guesses on that one?
I have asked the same question over on another list that is populated with English 3 speed owners, so we shall see what comes of that.

Aaron
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