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Old 07-01-09, 01:57 PM   #1
jonmar
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Sunbeam cycles

Hello I would like to tell you all about a bike I rescued from the top of a scrap metal pile at my local recycling centre. I know there is a forum or sub forum for saved bikes but this is an old one. The bike is a Sunbeam make I think from 1923. There is stamped into the top of the head tube the following number 606 then letter W and then 23. The Sunbeam identity is as a result of a search on the web.
Brakes The bike is fitted with hub brakes which are operated with levers and rods. They are Sturmey Archer make. The front brake has been adapted in that there has been fitted a Philips make stirrup brake which works on the wheel rim. The rear hub brake works.
Wheels are Dunlop 26x13/8 WO,Sorry do not know at this time what the WO means. They are in poor condition.
Gears The gears are Sturmey Archer three speed hub operated. The gear lever is mounted on the down tube with the wire going down to the bottom bracket where it goes round a wheel back up the seat tube to another wheel then down to the hub. The wire from the first wheel to the hub is plastic coated.
The totally enclosed chain is to allow you to put in about pints of oil so that your chain is continually soaked in oil thereby eliminating wear. I have removed a circular plate to show the chain and it really does seem in good order. The rather white foamy appearance on the chain is because I had just hosed the bike down and the water has mixed with the little oil in the casing.
There was also fitted a rear bag attached to the rear of the Lycett England seat. There are a couple of rips in the canvas but all the leather belts and buckles are in good condition. The bag was made by H W Carradice Leeds road works Nelson Lancashire.
Photographs have been taken and hopefully attached.

Help Question / Has anyone any knowledge of these bikes and in particular the way the front brake rods operated at the hub as I would really like to restore this bike if possible.

I did inflate the tyres and it is a really nice bike to ride.


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Old 07-01-09, 05:52 PM   #2
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I think the Quadrant (spelling?) shifter on the down tubes is from the 1930s. Nice catch. It would have been a shame for that bike to have survived this long just to me smelted down. Be careful in the method you use on cleaning the chrome parts (a few postings here on BF on "how to" ). Black is a pretty easy color to deal with. Post some "after" pix. Should be a fun project.
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Old 07-01-09, 06:14 PM   #3
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I don't know if Sunbeam bicycles were built by the same company that built Sunbeam motorcycles, but they are considered the very best of the 30's motorcycles.
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Old 07-02-09, 05:55 AM   #4
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Oh, a beauty. Oil bath chaincase. Wow.
You'll find a lot of info on your old Sunbeam in our archives:

http://oldroads.com/avq1.asp
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Old 07-02-09, 06:03 AM   #5
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The rear hub probably bears markings that indicate the model and date of the hub, which will give you a pretty good idea of the date of the bike.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:31 AM   #6
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The Sunbeam bicycle company eventually became the Sunbeam motorcycle company, and then, the Sunbeam car company, which produced the Carrol Shelby-designed Sunbeam Tiger.

In its day the Sunbeam bicycle was considered a premium, expensive bicycle.
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Old 07-02-09, 10:41 AM   #7
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Rear hub markings

Hello Thanks to all for interest and further references to follow.
The rear hub markings which normally have model and year I checked Sheldon brown only tells me in this case that the model is AB but instead of a year it is stamped patent applied for.
Normally by this time I would have had the bike stripped but have decided this time to try to find out all I can before stripingThanks again
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Old 07-02-09, 04:12 PM   #8
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Besides rust removal threads here on BF, BicycleTutor.com has a rust-removal section.

http://bicycletutor.com/

Link for rust removal:

http://bicycletutor.com/rust-removal/

Be careful with steel wool, a tooth brush might be less abrasive. Also, Oxylic acid baths seem to be popular amongst some BF members. There is alot of talk about it in different threads.
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Old 07-18-09, 03:41 PM   #9
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Hello all
Sorry no updates re pictures but have been busy with other bike projects but have been using oil and steel wool on wheels which is shifting the rust but I doubt that the wheels will ever be pristine but never mind the bike is quite old.thanks John
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Old 07-18-09, 05:41 PM   #10
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I could be wrong, but the bicycle probably came with rod brakes. The drum brakes/wheels on it could be a later addition. Tim
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Old 07-18-09, 09:15 PM   #11
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I recomend BRONZE WOOL over steel wool. It's harder than the rust but softer than the plating and won't leave teeny little scratches. If the chrome is shot it doesn't make a difference but I've made it a habit.
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Old 07-28-09, 01:53 PM   #12
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Stripped

Found time over a few days to strip the sunbeam. Have included photos of stripped frame,the head tube with built in bearing cups,the top of the fork tube with cuts and the captive lock nut which screws onto the top of the forks. The ball bearings in the head tube were two different sizes with the top bearing having very small ball bearings and the bottom almost twice the size of the top. Also found another number on the rear dropout which is L W R H not to clear in my photograph Cheers.
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File Type: jpg frame 1.jpg (94.4 KB, 42 views)
File Type: jpg frame 2.jpg (78.2 KB, 41 views)
File Type: jpg frame 3.jpg (87.5 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg frame 4.jpg (84.5 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg frame 5.jpg (61.8 KB, 24 views)
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Old 07-28-09, 03:36 PM   #13
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Does the chaincase double as the chainstay?

Ken.
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Old 07-29-09, 01:41 AM   #14
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Yes. There is a raised flange on the drive side of the bottom bracket and when screwing in the fixed part of the bottom bracket it secures the chain casing. There is also a bolt fixing which passes through the chaincase and is fixed onto the last part of the chainstay on the drive side. There is a metal bar inside the chaincase which helps to give the securing points more rigidity. Hope that helps Cheers
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Old 07-29-09, 07:54 AM   #15
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well that sure does make it easy to get the chain off
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Old 08-08-09, 04:08 PM   #16
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Hello I have at last received a supply of oxalic acid and am in the process of treating the wheels sorry to the authors who suggested steel or copper wool there is no comparison and so much easier to soak in solution of oxalic acid to get rid of rust. Have also taken to soaking small parts in laundry bag such as cotter pins cannot believe that the pins are still usable as it only took a small tap with a hammer to remove the pins without damageing the threads on the pins.It is a slow job removing the old crap and gunge from the metal parts and it is still heads or tails for a sandblasting and powdercoating job on the frame,forks, mudguards, etc.for 45 pounds or a rattle can spray what do you think. I have read a few threads on do it yourself but the jury is still out!!!!!!
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Old 08-10-09, 12:35 PM   #17
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Hello thought I would strip the front hub/brake today just to get a better idea of how it works. Went o.k. except for one little point in that I could not remove the balls and race from the small side of the hub as it seems to be held in by a circlip/retaining circle of metal. It is my thought that perhaps pressure from the other side would remove the ring but a few tentative prods did not budge it and as I do not really need to get the race out to grease the bearing then I think it is best left in situ. I know that there is a port to oil the bearing but I would prefer to use plenty of grease in the rebuild. I may just look at a few drawings of the rear wheel hub which has a brake and gearing before I take my tools to strip it unless of course you tell me it is easy peasy?. Cheers
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File Type: jpg hub 1.jpg (62.9 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg hub 4.jpg (86.4 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg hub 5.jpg (81.9 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg hub 2.jpg (69.0 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg hub 3.jpg (63.1 KB, 26 views)
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Old 08-10-09, 01:13 PM   #18
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Edit: I see you're talking about the front. Oops. I didn't read very well. Anyway, for what it's worth. I'm referring below to the circlip/c-ring thing that retains the cog on the drive-side of an SA rear hub. -eric

Original message:

Hmm. If the hub is an AW or its ancestor, the circlip can easily be removed with a couple of very small straight-slot screwdrivers and a small hammer (drive one screwdriver gently between the circlip and the groove in which it lives near one end of the circlip, pry up the edge, and then use the other screwdriver to pry up the circlip, working your way around (rather like you remove a tire with tire levers); the circlip should pop off after you get about halfway around).

However...

While it's probably a good idea to take the hub fully apart to give it a good cleaning, you don't need to remove the cog in order to service the axle bearings (though you do need to remove it in order to service the freewheel bearings, I believe.

This is all contingent upon your hub's being an AW or substantially similar to one. With some research, you should be able to determine exactly what you have.

Be careful!!!!!

http://www.sturmey-archerheritage.com/history.php

http://www.hadland.me.uk/gear.html

http://www.hadland.me.uk/2tables.pdf (this can help you determine the exact model hub you have: look on p. 3 for markings to differentiate the era of the hub; p. 10 for hub shell dimensions associated with different models)

http://sheldonbrown.com/sturmey-archer.html

Looking forward to more!

Last edited by Roll-Monroe-Co; 08-10-09 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 08-10-09, 01:19 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonmar View Post
Hello thought I would strip the front hub/brake today just to get a better idea of how it works. Went o.k. except for one little point in that I could not remove the balls and race from the small side of the hub as it seems to be held in by a circlip/retaining circle of metal. It is my thought that perhaps pressure from the other side would remove the ring but a few tentative prods did not budge it and as I do not really need to get the race out to grease the bearing then I think it is best left in situ. I know that there is a port to oil the bearing but I would prefer to use plenty of grease in the rebuild. I may just look at a few drawings of the rear wheel hub which has a brake and gearing before I take my tools to strip it unless of course you tell me it is easy peasy?. Cheers
That side of the front hub looks similar to the non-drive side of an AW.

I believe that the the little retaining ring in the front hub is just held in place with tension. You might try first some penetrating oil overnight just to make sure you're not dealing with something that's rusted solid, then gently pry the ring out with a straight-slot screwdriver.

In any event, unless you need to change the bearings, you can probably flush the thing out with solvent and then apply new grease without ever removing the retaining ring if you can't get it out.
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Old 08-10-09, 01:21 PM   #20
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Hmm. If the hub is an AW or its ancestor, the circlip can easily be removed with a couple of very small straight-slot screwdrivers and a small hammer (drive one screwdriver gently between the circlip and the groove in which it lives near one end of the circlip, pry up the edge, and then use the other screwdriver to pry up the circlip, working your way around (rather like you remove a tire with tire levers); the circlip should pop off after you get about halfway around).

However...

While it's probably a good idea to take the hub fully apart to give it a good cleaning, you don't need to remove the cog in order to service the axle bearings (though you do need to remove it in order to service the freewheel bearings, I believe.

This is all contingent upon your hub's being an AW or substantially similar to one. With some research, you should be able to determine exactly what you have.

Be careful!!!!!

http://www.sturmey-archerheritage.com/history.php

http://www.hadland.me.uk/gear.html

http://www.hadland.me.uk/2tables.pdf (this can help you determine the exact model hub you have: look on p. 3 for markings to differentiate the era of the hub; p. 10 for hub shell dimensions associated with different models)

http://sheldonbrown.com/sturmey-archer.html

Looking forward to more!
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Old 08-10-09, 01:32 PM   #21
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Thanks for that. The hub is sturmey archer and in the photo showing the small side of the hub the lettering is B F 9 if that means anything.Cheers
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Old 08-11-09, 06:04 AM   #22
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Yes that dates it to 1939 - the whole bike does look as if it from that period....
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Old 08-11-09, 02:14 PM   #23
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Thank you for the date on the front hub I do not suppose you know when the patent was approved on the AB hub which is on the back but instead of a date on the hub it is stamped into the metal patent applied for. I am still bearing in mind that as someone previously suggested that the wheels could have been changed as the difference in the braking system does not tie the bike down to a model.
Believe it or not I was on holiday in Wales earlier on in the year and spent some time looking at the national collection but I spent most of the time looking at road bikes and not the sunbeams they have there. Perhaps I will try emailing them to see if they can help with identification of the bike. Cheers
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Old 08-15-09, 03:21 AM   #24
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Hello stripped the rear hub satisfied my curiosity as to what is in there and have rebuilt both wheels.
I have been in touch with the national cycle museum in Wales and having supplied photos and further info they have informed me that the bike is a Silver Sunbeam Light Roadster dating from 1934/35. The adaption of the front brake obviously they cannot explain. If allowed on this forum my further thanks to Scotford Lawrence from the national cycle museum for the info. Cheers.
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File Type: jpg wheel 5.jpg (43.3 KB, 10 views)
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Old 08-15-09, 03:47 AM   #25
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Lovely old bike and great job so far with the restoration. Looking forward to more progress reports (and pictures!) as it progresses. Well saved, sir!
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