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Old 06-12-11, 07:15 AM   #2051
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I think the Sports is a fantastic city bike. The semi-upright position is great for looking around. I feel safe that way, and I take advantage of being able to turn my head often. On a bike with drop bars, I don't look around as often. And there's something about the handling. I just can't put it into words.
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Old 06-12-11, 07:32 AM   #2052
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I'd pick up a Sports sight-unseen for $10. I wouldn't care if it was a total rusty piece of crapola. Just the AXLE for the Sturmey-Archer hub runs over $15 and I'd be 99.99% sure the axle is OK on a bike. I have an AW hub right now with a worn axle (very many miles) and every time I find a spare hub it's in too good of shape to cannibalize for one part like that. Sooner or later... I'd pay $10 for a SA hub right now sight unseen!

Many other parts on the bike too. There aren't many parts on these bikes that you can buy for $10. Heck, just a cheap greenfield kickstand costs me $10 when a bike comes to me missing one. I've never bought an old Raleigh that the tubes weren't good on them. 2 tubes are almost worth $10 right there. And the tubes on many of these older bikes are heavy-duty tubes that you can't hardly even FIND today and when you do they are around $10 each anyhow. Every once in a while I have to re-tap and then ream the valve stem innards or they slowly leak the the stem but after that they are like new. Wash the tube and shake-n-bake it in a 2-quart ziplock back full of baby powder and it's like new.

$10... You can't even find lunch in Chicago for $10!
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Old 06-12-11, 09:17 AM   #2053
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Amesja: so you think he should pick it up then?

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Old 06-12-11, 09:28 AM   #2054
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I did pick it up. Plus, I'm a she.

For the record, the question was less the $10 than the drive, more than an hour each way. That, plus the fact that the person selling it didn't know the frame size -- she said 'my Dad says it's 26 inches', which even I recognized as the wheel size, not the frame size on a Ladies Sport. Also, I am deeply not the sort of person who would be able to realize a profit by selling its parts. This is a first project, the one on which, hopefully, I will *learn* how to deal with bikes. I can see that if I were an experienced flipper, or even the sort of person for whom "keep it around for the parts" would make sense, things would have been different.

At the moment I'm wondering whether it would make sense to replace the tires.
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Old 06-12-11, 09:30 AM   #2055
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It depends on what you're after. What kind of riding will you do? If it's any significant amount of time, new tires would improve the ride. I'm using Schwalbe Delta Cruisers, and they're very nice. There are better tires, too. I wish I had gotten the Col De La Vie tires.
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Old 06-12-11, 09:35 AM   #2056
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Bumping around the city, mostly. Lots of potholes, glass, etc. Also, hills, though I don't imagine that matters for tires.
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Old 06-12-11, 10:20 AM   #2057
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I drove an hour each way for a $30 Bendix Kickback coaster hub and paid $15 worth of tolls and probably $25 worth of gas 2 weeks ago.
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Old 06-12-11, 10:22 AM   #2058
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djkashuba View Post
Could those that have experience with DL1's, Sports/ Superbe's please describe which ride they prefer and why?

I am lusting after a DL1 for apperence sake (never have ridden one) and would probably have to pounce if one became available in my area. I do have a Superbe and
a Sports.

Thanks.
I've got one of each right now (DL-1, Superbe, Sports), and several others have passed through my hands.

The DL-1 is my favorite bike to ride, period. Nothing else is as smooth, stable, and (even, sort of) fast. The really upright seating position puts me up above the traffic (even SUVs, usually). The riding position is much more comfortable than an American beach cruiser, and the bike is WAY lighter and faster. I find that on the DL-1 I hardly touch the handlebars -- I just sit on top of it and it cruises along. As others have said, that makes it way easier to look around in traffic -- on a drop-bar road bike I had to train myself to check over my shoulder without swerving, but on the DL-1 that's not an issue. And I just love the really big 28 x 1 1/2 wheels -- they seem to roll over pretty much anything with no trouble.

There are a few downsides: 1) it's not good on hills (fortunately, my current city doesn't have any) -- the extremely slack headtube angle means that if you stand up on the pedals, you'll hit your thighs on the handlebars; 2) the rod brakes are adequate, but only adequate, when it's dry, and don't work at all in the rain (but I'm hoping that the new rod-brake compatible Kool Stops will help with that). 3) with rod brakes, the roundness of the wheels matters a lot more than it does with caliper brakes, and I find that radial truing is much more difficult than lateral truing. Oh, and there's another minor downside: with rod brakes you can't use a normal kickstand, and the double kickstands are really expensive. But that's not a biggie.

The Sports and Superbe are really nice bikes, but they feel more "normal." The Dynohub on the Superbe isn't necessarily a good thing; I find that the resistance is noticeable, and the stock lights aren't really useable under 21st-century US road conditions. I'm working on ways to make them brighter (and you could probably just pay up for fancy German lights), but that gets into extra trouble and expense. My wife rides the '57 Sports, and she finds the stock gearing to be a little high even without hills (which may be a matter of preference; I don't find the gearing too high on the DL-1 or Superbe). On the plus side, the Sports/Superbe is probably the most solid, durable, unfussy bike ever -- once you get the brakes and shifter chain adjusted properly, you can pretty much leave the thing alone and it will just keep going for decades.
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Old 06-12-11, 10:50 AM   #2059
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hbok@mac.com View Post
I did pick it up. Plus, I'm a she.

For the record, the question was less the $10 than the drive, more than an hour each way. That, plus the fact that the person selling it didn't know the frame size -- she said 'my Dad says it's 26 inches', which even I recognized as the wheel size, not the frame size on a Ladies Sport. Also, I am deeply not the sort of person who would be able to realize a profit by selling its parts. This is a first project, the one on which, hopefully, I will *learn* how to deal with bikes. I can see that if I were an experienced flipper, or even the sort of person for whom "keep it around for the parts" would make sense, things would have been different.

At the moment I'm wondering whether it would make sense to replace the tires.
Hbok welcome to the forums, and the hobby. Congrats on getting the Raleigh, you're in for it now, better be careful or soon you'll have a fleet of old bikes.

For your tires, there are several considerations. Is this bike a bike you plan on riding a lot? What condition are the current tires? If threads are poking through the cracks you're tires are dangerously bad. If the tires are just weather checked they should be fine for some light riding, but depending on age can deteriorate quickly. You'll want to keep an eye on them. If you plan on keeping the bike and putting a lot of miles on it, you're going to need new tires sooner or later anyway as regular riding will wear them out. Me personally, I like the grip and peace of mind that new tires bring, but I have old tires on my bikes that only get ridden once-in-a-blue moon.
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Old 06-12-11, 01:04 PM   #2060
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Thanks for the welcome, and (to everyone) for the advice. I just ordered new tires -- Schwalbe, the Panaracer seems to be unavailable. Also, Koolstop brake shoes -- my operating assumption is that I should err on the side of replacing things that are rubber, and of not replacing things that are steel. I'm still in the midst of the First Big Cleaning Job, which should be done just about the time the tires and brake shoes arrive.
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Old 06-12-11, 02:22 PM   #2061
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Follow-up on a prior tire question:
- Are gumwall tires period-correct for 1930's Raleighs?
- How about post-war Raleighs?
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Old 06-12-11, 03:11 PM   #2062
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djkashuba View Post
Could those that have experience with DL1's, Sports/ Superbe's please describe which ride they prefer and why?
As others have stated, they are very different bicycles. I rode a Hercules Sports copy daily for a few years before finding a DL-1, and I much prefer the DL-1 for daily riding in traffic in normal clothes. It puts a big grin on my face every time I rid it and is very different than any other bicycle-riding experience, while the Sports is not unlike riding a road bike or hybrid with a relatively upright position.

One thing about the DL-1, while its easy to bomb along once it gets up to speed and is not "slow" in the same way that a cruiser or mountain bike is, I also find it easy to get get around (usually ~5 miles one way) without arriving drenched in sweat (summer in New Orleans). The high gearing and comfortable seating position seem to help me take it easy when I might otherwise push harder and work up a sweat.

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Old 06-12-11, 03:30 PM   #2063
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Much thanks to all regarding DL1 information. Now to wait and watch....

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Old 06-12-11, 03:44 PM   #2064
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Follow-up on a prior tire question:
- Are gumwall tires period-correct for 1930's Raleighs?
- How about post-war Raleighs?
All black tires are what I've ever seen on 1930s Raleighs, at least the ones with EA1 and EA3 wheels. Of course, I don't think too many of those tires were original! On post-war, it depends how "post" you mean--late 1940s? I have feeling that tubular tires with gum/skinwalls have been around a long time.

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Old 06-12-11, 03:52 PM   #2065
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Check out this 3 speed build on Rat Rod Bikes. I don't know if it qualifies as a Rat Rod, but it is a sweet ride.
http://www.ratrodbikes.com/forum/vie...st=0&sk=t&sd=a
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Old 06-12-11, 03:52 PM   #2066
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All black tires are what I've ever seen on 1930s Raleighs, at least the ones with EA1 and EA3 wheels. Of course, I don't think too many of those tires were original! On post-war, it depends how "post" you mean--late 1940s? I have feeling that tubular tires with gum/skinwalls have been around a long time.

Neal
Thanks Neal - I was just trying to figure out what is "correct" original equipment on my '38 GA or 53 Sports. I know it would be a rarity indeed to see one with original tires, but you would think that most of the guys here would remember when they were new.
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Old 06-12-11, 06:54 PM   #2067
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Thanks Neal - I was just trying to figure out what is "correct" original equipment on my '38 GA or 53 Sports. I know it would be a rarity indeed to see one with original tires, but you would think that most of the guys here would remember when they were new.
I ain't THAT OLD....yet.

Look for old catalogue pictures and Raleigh Ads. I know for quite a while they came with Dunlop tyres with a white strip on them, the Schwalbe Marathon with the reflective stripe looks decent from a distance.

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Old 06-12-11, 08:07 PM   #2068
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I ain't THAT OLD....yet.

Look for old catalogue pictures and Raleigh Ads. I know for quite a while they came with Dunlop tyres with a white strip on them, the Schwalbe Marathon with the reflective stripe looks decent from a distance.

Aaron

Aaron -
I took your advice and searched for old Raleigh ads and catalogs. This is what I came up with:


Raleigh 1937 Golden Arrow Catalog Page - (Can't tell what color of tires they had).


Aaron - I took your advice and did some searching- here is what I came up with:


'34 Advert with gumwalls


Dated '32 parts catalog - with gumwalls


30's Raleigh poster - with gumwalls


c. 1940 Advert - STILL with gumwalls



1954 Raleigh Sports advert - NOW WITH BLACKWALLS!



What I conclude from this little study is that pre-War Raleighs used gumwall tires, and by rights, my 38 Golden Arrow should have Panaracer Col de Vie's, to look as period correct as possible.

Post war - (or at least by around the time my Sports was built), black walls were being spec'd.

- My only remaining dilemma is that I am so used to seeing all black tires on all old Raleighs, that I half-wonder if they will look strange.
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Old 06-12-11, 08:40 PM   #2069
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I think it would look really good with the white/cream schwalbe tires. No idea how correct they would be though. The col de vie's would be a nice choice too.
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Old 06-12-11, 09:02 PM   #2070
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Auchencrow, how are you determining they are gum walls in the B&W add copy? All it says is Dunlop Tyres.
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Old 06-12-11, 10:23 PM   #2071
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Auchencrow, how are you determining they are gum walls in the B&W add copy? All it says is Dunlop Tyres.
There appears to be a marked transition in shading on all the adverts up through 1940: This could be construed merely as the artists' rendering of the tire tread, but that does not explain why in the post war ('54) advert the shading suddenly runs clear to the rim! My guess is that black nylon came into it's own in the post-war era.
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Old 06-13-11, 03:50 AM   #2072
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I wonder if there was a shortage of carbon black prior to the war? Of if that was just the style of casings that were being made? And the nylon came into common use after the war?

FWIW I run either one and both look fine to me. I have one Sports that has a blackwall in the front and a gumwall in the back probably due to it was what I had on hand at the moment.

Aaron

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Old 06-13-11, 05:08 AM   #2073
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1939

tyres added 2010, however. But don't it look good?
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Old 06-13-11, 08:09 AM   #2074
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Old 06-13-11, 09:20 AM   #2075
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^ very useful picture with which to compare, Aaron, thank you.
On my Sports, I am definitely going black then, in part because it's correct (and it's what I am used to seeing).

I am on a fence about the Golden Arrow though. I think I prefer black, but it's incorrect.
Oddly, I didn't deliberate on tires for my Armstrong, opted for gumwalls, and am happy I did.
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