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  1. #1
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    '54 Raleigh Sports acquired

    A short time ago i bought my wife a '70 Raleigh Sport:


    I found myself jumping on her bike pretty often for all the quick around town stuff instead of my competition. So i decided to keep an eye out for one of my own, and I found one! It's a dated '54 on the hub, has original the brooks(pretty much toast) and a front dynamo hub. shifter was replaced in the 80's, not very good looking imo with the colors, it looks... like its from the 80's lol.







    sure wish i had the original shifter

  2. #2
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Nice snag, RC. I find my (53) Sports is a favorite for short hops too.
    I like the patina. (Your rear fender has even less white remaining on its white-tail than mine! )

    I would invest in a more "proper" trigger shifter for it, as you had mentioned, and maybe a rear (black housing) reflector too, to complete the look.
    - Auchen

  3. #3
    26 tpi nut. sailorbenjamin's Avatar
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    Georgious. I wonder of it has stainless spokes. Those really polish up nice. I bet that paint will shine up too. I love the older ones.
    I have spoken.

  4. #4
    Senior Member PatTheSlat's Avatar
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    If you want to shine it up a bit, that paint will come around nicely with some rubbing & polishing compound. The paint seems to be in about the same condition my 59's was when I got it, and it's shined up pretty nicely. The rubbing compound will probably remove what's left of your decals though.

    The "correct" Sturmey Archer shifter for this would be the "upside down" one, which may be a bit tough to find. I've heard that they were originally intended to be mounted under the left side of the handlebars rather than over the right side, but all old Raleigh catalogs I could find had the shifter in the more common place. The black plastic on the one that's on there should also come right off if you undo that screw, leaving you with plain chrome.

    The 54 (and any '65 or earlier Sports) will have the "snap in" style double ended brake cables, too, which are absolutely impossible to find now, so you'll either have to get comfortable riding with the 60 year old set of cables that's on there now, or change your calipers.

  5. #5
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PatTheSlat View Post
    If you want to shine it up a bit, that paint will come around nicely with some rubbing & polishing compound. The paint seems to be in about the same condition my 59's was when I got it, and it's shined up pretty nicely. The rubbing compound will probably remove what's left of your decals though.

    The "correct" Sturmey Archer shifter for this would be the "upside down" one, which may be a bit tough to find. I've heard that they were originally intended to be mounted under the left side of the handlebars rather than over the right side, but all old Raleigh catalogs I could find had the shifter in the more common place. The black plastic on the one that's on there should also come right off if you undo that screw, leaving you with plain chrome.

    The 54 (and any '65 or earlier Sports) will have the "snap in" style double ended brake cables, too, which are absolutely impossible to find now, so you'll either have to get comfortable riding with the 60 year old set of cables that's on there now, or change your calipers.
    Or make your own cables. IIRC there are several people on here that do just that. Some use bullet molds, others fishing weights.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  6. #6
    Senior Member oldroads's Avatar
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    I'm not a fan of homemade brake cables. If you need new cables it is better to replace the calipers, too. That way you can use standard cables.
    Keep the original calipers of course, they should always go with the bike if you sell it.
    Vinny - Menotomy Vintage Bicycles - OldRoads.com
    BUY/SELL forum (no fees) - Price Guides - 19 years of archives

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    Senior Member oldroads's Avatar
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    Also you've gotta find a reflector with black housing...
    Vinny - Menotomy Vintage Bicycles - OldRoads.com
    BUY/SELL forum (no fees) - Price Guides - 19 years of archives

  8. #8
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    On my '38 Raleigh, I fabricated home-made brake cables precisely because I did not trust the ancient cables, and wanted to keep the original calipers.
    A (big enough) crimping tool (below) is an expense - but the 1/16" Campbell cable stops are cheap (~$1.24/package at Lowes).
    I used the crimped-on stops in combination with the cable adjusters from a scrapped Simplex Prestige DT shifter.

    I have confidence in my work, but Oldroads' recommendation to replace the calipers with more modern ones is probably the best/more conservative tack.



    - Auchen

  9. #9
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    i appreciate the comments, but i know about the rear reflector! haha kinda obvious isnt it? does anyone have a link to some decent look-a-likes or even a little battery powered blinker that looks decent? i like to keep things original if i can, but cost and availability often play bigger roles than desire.

    my front cable has been replaced and has an ugly anchor bolt and nut thrown on it. I feel that there shouldnt be anything wrong with making your own, as long as you use decent quality hardware. Auchen your set up looks nice, though i would personally cut the excess cable much closer. and WOW a '38? i know there are older bikes than that too, but its just awesome that the Sports has been around for so long! more pics of your '38 please?

    Also if anyone has some good links for generator lights, and a frame pump would be pretty sweet too...

  10. #10
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RALEIGH_COMP View Post
    i appreciate the comments, but i know about the rear reflector! haha kinda obvious isnt it? does anyone have a link to some decent look-a-likes or even a little battery powered blinker that looks decent? i like to keep things original if i can, but cost and availability often play bigger roles than desire.

    my front cable has been replaced and has an ugly anchor bolt and nut thrown on it. I feel that there shouldnt be anything wrong with making your own, as long as you use decent quality hardware. Auchen your set up looks nice, though i would personally cut the excess cable much closer. and WOW a '38? i know there are older bikes than that too, but its just awesome that the Sports has been around for so long! more pics of your '38 please?

    Also if anyone has some good links for generator lights, and a frame pump would be pretty sweet too...
    My '38 Raleigh is actually a Golden Arrow - but the Sports models have been around in one incarnation or another from at least '38.
    Here is a link to the catalog on Kurt's "Headbadge" website:

    http://www.kurtkaminer.com/TH_raleigh_cat_us38.html

    My own Raleigh Sports is a '53 (below)



    Regarding the rear reflector, a blinky would probably be an ideal supplemental light, but a black housing reflector would look great. If they're too dear, you might be able to pick up a proper round white on eBay and paint it for a lot less.
    - Auchen

  11. #11
    Senior Member PatTheSlat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RALEIGH_COMP View Post
    Also if anyone has some good links for generator lights, and a frame pump would be pretty sweet too...
    This frame pump looks like the original and will fit the pre-existing frame bosses: http://www.amazon.com/Sunlite-Bicycl...dp/B000M4D6D2/

  12. #12
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    thanks pat! those look like just the ticket, and there are some for as low as 3-4 bucks, 10 shipped. anyone got those? hows the quality and functionality?

  13. #13
    meandering nomad
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    Here is a picture of my 1954 Sports. It is all there except the saddle (period correct Wrghts) and the grips.
    Safety Nanny Checklist
    1.Two headlights major brand 100+ Lumens plus helmet light2.Two tail-lights at minimum but really you need more3.Mirrors on helmet, handlebar and back of glove.4. Reflective vest and tape on every surface5.Disc and caliper brakes just in case6.Horn, bell and train whistle7.Chicken Little’s Phone# 8.Wear a helmet at all times (you might fall out of bed)Because it's scary out there!

  14. #14
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    man why couldnt mine have had the full chain guard!

    bill- i see you scooted the pulley for the shifter up, how does it work from that position? or is it more for looks?

  15. #15
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    That bike should shine up like a new penny... A little light oil on a clean rag can do wonders and polishing up the brightwork can be pretty easy with a homemade aluminium scrubby and some lemon juice.

    The spokes on a Sports are going to be zinc plated, stainless spokes were the domain of higher end models.

  16. #16
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Meguiar's Scratch-X has been known to work wonders on that old black Raleigh paint.

    Some earlier Sports did come with SS spokes,but I think by '54 that was done.


    Last edited by auchencrow; 01-07-13 at 08:33 PM.
    - Auchen

  17. #17
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    My 54 Sports originally had 26 by 1 1/4 Dunlop plated wheels with zinc spokes, I swapped those out for some modern 700c wheels since the originals were in such bad shape.

    My 1955 Lenton has stainless wheels and spokes and my '51 Sports also has plainer wheels.

    My '54... Was originally a drop bar model like my 1951.


  18. #18
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    ...

    - Auchen

  19. #19
    Senior Member adventurepdx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RALEIGH_COMP View Post
    does anyone have a link to some decent look-a-likes or even a little battery powered blinker that looks decent?
    For a battery-powered rear fender light, you can't go wrong with a Fenderbot from Portland Design Works. Looks pretty much like a dynamo-powered rear fender light.
    http://www.ridepdw.com/goods/lights/fenderbot%E2%84%A2

    My girlfriend has one on the back of her '61 Raleigh Sports. While it's not the same as the original rear reflector, I don't feel it looks that much out of place.
    http://urbanadventureleague.blogspot.com/ http://societyofthreespeeds.wordpress.com/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/urbanadventureleaguepdx/

  20. #20
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    For a nice front light, BM Lumotec Classic is a great choice as it works well with the old Dynohub and throws really decent light at 25 Lux which is the equivalent of about 200 lumens. The beam is also crisp and has a nice high cutoff so you won't blind oncoming cyclists.

  21. #21
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    dang i didnt realize that generator lights were so pricey! maybe i should just set the front wheel aside for now and get a regular wheel along with some battery lamps...

  22. #22
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RALEIGH_COMP View Post
    dang i didnt realize that generator lights were so pricey! maybe i should just set the front wheel aside for now and get a regular wheel along with some battery lamps...
    You already have the generator... If it is fuctioning well you are about 60.00 away from a decent quality headlight with a new wheel and decent battery lights being something that will cost quite a bit more.

    Wanted to ask you to check your wheel size to see if your bike has 26 by 1 1/4 or 26 by 1 3/8 wheels, the first size is an EA1 and is more difficult to source than the more common 650A.

  23. #23
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Black surround reflectors are available from Yellow Jersey in Madison, WI. Best bet is to call them. I ordered several from them a while back. Great service.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    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.
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    _krazygluon

  24. #24
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    thanks Aron, those look perfect, and pretty cheap also!

    i ordered up one of those frame pumps from Niagra cycle, 11 and some change shipped, not too shabby.

    sixty fiver- I was thinking i would just keep an eye out for another sports front wheel without the dynamo, I wouldnt buy a brand new one. but you are right, even then the cost is still pretty comparable. not to mention i will have to keep buying batteries!

  25. #25
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    found some hardware around my work, i'm thinking this would look pretty clean if i can get it to work. I want to anchor the cable with two set screws, and hopefully they will be recessed or atleast flush with the outer surface of the sleeve. I just have to think of an excuse to be down in the machine shop since its not my department


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