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Old 01-05-14, 01:36 PM   #1
arex
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700c tires on an old Raleigh Sports

I've run into a tire-size problem with this Raleigh Sports build I'm working on.

I thought I measured things adequately, and thought I could put tires as large as 700x42, but I guess I'm mistaken. Clearance isn't an issue on the back, just the front fork, and it's a matter of tire height rather than width. The Continental Eco Contact tires I'm working with just lightly rub against the top of the fork...strangely, the 700x38 Schwalbe Marathons that I was originally going to mount are narrower, but significantly taller, and they're pressed pretty firmly against the fork. Fenders aren't an issue, I won't be using them.

My question is, how big of a tire can I go with, when there appears to be a lot of variation between brands and models? What are everyone else with a Sports and 700c rims using? Are there other considerations I need to be thinking about?
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Old 01-05-14, 01:48 PM   #2
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My 1954 Raleigh Sports that was originally fitted with EA1 (597mm rims)... running 700:32 tyres, short reach Dia-compe brakes, and the fenders are Bluemels which have some pretty close clearance.
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Old 01-05-14, 01:52 PM   #3
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Every English 3speed I've encountered takes 590mm (26 x 1-3/8 ) EA.3's, or 597 mm (26 x 1-1/4 ) EA.1's.
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Old 01-05-14, 02:30 PM   #4
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.. @arex, if your goal with a Sports is fatter tires, your best option is to lace
your wheels to 26" MTB rims, and look around for long reach brakes.

I think at this point you're pretty much gonna have to be happy with
whatever 700's you can fit in there, maybe 700x32's ?



These are 26 x 1.5
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Old 01-05-14, 02:36 PM   #5
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Every English 3speed I've encountered takes 590mm (26 x 1-3/8 ) EA.3's, or 597 mm (26 x 1-1/4 ) EA.1's.
Later models run 26 by 1 3/8 while older British bike have the EA1 which was also used as a performance wheel.

With the availability of nicer 590 tyres and some decent rims you can get some very nice performance and a very nice ride quality to boot.

My 1951 Sports has rebuilt wheels with Mavic hoops and Schwalbe Delta Cruisers... it came with 26 by 1 3/8 wheels which were probably replacements.

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Old 01-05-14, 02:58 PM   #6
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...

My 1951 Sports ..

There's some old English eye candy. Almost makes up for the absent C&B butterscotch.
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Old 01-05-14, 03:03 PM   #7
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There are pretty good 650A (590mmbsd) rims and tires Sun makes an aluminum rim, and the Col de la Vire tire is probably the best 650A tire available in the US.
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Old 01-05-14, 03:11 PM   #8
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There's some old English eye candy. Almost makes up for the absent C&B butterscotch.
Last summer I decided to swap the bars between the '51 and '54 and this worked out well as the '51 is a little smaller and did not need the reach the Special bars offered and the '54 looks splendid with them, the '51 got a set of Raleigh steel bars with white tape that compliment it nicely.



I ride the '54 a good deal and plan to re-home the '51 in the spring... it was originally sold here not more than 5 minutes from my current shop.
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Old 01-05-14, 08:05 PM   #9
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So, then...700x32 with fenders. I'll try a 35 without fenders, and see what happens.
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