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  1. #1
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    raleigh twenty ?s

    i've just started working on an old raleigh twenty (actually it's a philips twenty, but i'm pretty sure it's the same thing under a different name that raleigh used... correct me if i'm wrong). i'm making it into a fixed gear machine and i've got a couple questions for those who came before me.

    #1 the steerer on the forks has this weird cut-out thing on the threads, used originally for the quick release stem, i reckon. is it possible to use this fork with a regular headset? it came with a weird little plastic bushing instead of bearings.

    #2 bottom bracket... is there a cheap, reliable sealed cartridge that i could easily install?

    thanks folks. i'm sure i'll have many more queries before this project is completed. learning the ins and outs of old folders is like starting from scratch again...

  2. #2
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Not sure about the fork. I found one website that seems to say you can use the stock fork with a bearing headset. I use a suspension fork on mine.

    From http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~hadland/twenty.htm :
    "Following in their footsteps, Chris Slydel, a British ex-pat who lives in the USA, has built a high performance Raleigh Twenty ... Chris re-threaded the bottom bracket shell, which allowed him to fit a standard thread titanium BB. He also threaded the top section of the fork at the top, to allow the fitting of a standard headset, and not the solid nylon top bearing that Raleigh initially put on the machines."

    Sheldon Brown has some info on options for the bottom bracket at http://sheldonbrown.org/raleigh-twenty.html . I use a Shimano UN72 and Phil Wood bottom bracket rings (expensive) in mine. Unfortunately he UN72 is out of production, though they still show up on ebay and in LBS's sometimes.

    For more info, see:
    http://sheldonbrown.org/raleigh-twenty.html
    http://home.comcast.net/~cheg01/r20.html

  3. #3
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    thanks. did you find that one of your bottom bracket cups was welded in place? i can't get the left side out and the guys at my local bike shop say that all old british bikes tack welded the cups in there. how much did you end up spending on the whole bottom bracket, if you don't mind me asking? i think i'll probably go for the sheldon brown approach with the modified bmx fork.

  4. #4
    Shiftless bum cavit8's Avatar
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    Without going out and measuring mine, I'm not sure you would have a lot of room after threading the steerer tube on the stock fork.

    The tube is ISO so you can use a 1" threaded fork, though you may have a time finding one with a long enough steerer tube. I've found mostly 6 1/8" or so for stock BMX forks, which is too short.. I'll likely end up cutting down the head tube (from the top) to fit a shorter steering tube on the fork. You may find one long enough, stock, from someplace like gaerlan's in the parts section.

    I'm in the process of costing out rebuilding mine for touring and I'm rapidly getting discouraged. I'll try to post more as the process proceeds...
    Quote Originally Posted by operator
    truneo that tuned park internal nipple wrench work ??

  5. #5
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    There is no sign of tack welding on the cups I took out. I might have filed it off, I don't remember.

    The total cost of the bottom bracket was:
    $44 Phil Wood Rings
    $24 Phill Wood Ring tools
    $15 UN72 sealed bearing
    ______________
    $89

    This bothered me at the time when I had recently bought the bike for $104 including shipping. Since then I stopped counting at around $850 invested and that was before the last redesign. I don't doubt it's over $1000 by now. Probably could have bought a used Bike Friday for that. I get a lot of fun out of the bike though, it's worth it to me to have one that's unique that I built up myself.

    Spending on a bike is like the frog sitting in a pan on the stove. If you turn it up slowly enough he'll be boiled before he notices the heat.

    For the fork, the steerer has to be almost 240mm for a threaded headset, even longer for threadless. I bought one with a 240mm threadless and could not get the stem clamped on properly. I had to get it threaded at a local bike builders shop.

  6. #6
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andy_is_me
    i've just started working on an old raleigh twenty (actually it's a philips twenty, but i'm pretty sure it's the same thing under a different name that raleigh used... correct me if i'm wrong).
    Pictures?

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    I doubt that the fixed cup is welded in. It's an old bike so it might take serious muscle to get it out, and when you do, it's a non-standard thread and width. You can try to salvage the cups and replace the axel, or rethread the shell, or use a Phil Wood BB, or Phil Wood rings with a Shimano UN72. Biketoolsetc.com has an inexpensive sealed BB that doesn't use any threads, but you may need to make the shell narrower to use it.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheg
    Pictures?
    i took a couple with the trusty 35mm instamatic, no digital photos here. once they're developed i'll scan them and you can have a look. the bike looks just like a raleigh except where you'd expect to see "raleigh", it says "philips".

    i think i'm going to go the easy, cheap route with the bb and keep the old cups with a new spindle. it's been a long time since i've messed with a bb that wasn't the cartridge type... i can picture the loose balls rolling across the basement floor as i speak.

  9. #9
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    the old BB is a real pig to get out..if the bearing surface is OK leave it in just a little longer...C M Grange (an English company) is planning to release later this year square taper axles in the correct shell size for the 20 and also the Moulton Mk III, in the meantime find some old steel 5 pin cottered cranks ( i got a pair of 6 1/2 " BSA 5 pin racing cranks fora tenner) and run a TA ring (loads of sizes /easily available both new and second hand) this works well.


    Steve... ,Chesterfield,England

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheg
    There is no sign of tack welding on the cups I took out. I might have filed it off, I don't remember.

    The total cost of the bottom bracket was:
    $44 Phil Wood Rings
    $24 Phill Wood Ring tools
    $15 UN72 sealed bearing
    ______________
    $89

    This bothered me at the time when I had recently bought the bike for $104 including shipping. Since then I stopped counting at around $850 invested and that was before the last redesign. I don't doubt it's over $1000 by now. Probably could have bought a used Bike Friday for that. I get a lot of fun out of the bike though, it's worth it to me to have one that's unique that I built up myself.

    Spending on a bike is like the frog sitting in a pan on the stove. If you turn it up slowly enough he'll be boiled before he notices the heat.

    For the fork, the steerer has to be almost 240mm for a threaded headset, even longer for threadless. I bought one with a 240mm threadless and could not get the stem clamped on properly. I had to get it threaded at a local bike builders shop.
    Not to throw sand on anyone's chain, but you can buy a new Dahon coaster brake bike with a chromoly frame, V-brakes and alloy rims for under $200. You can get a Dahon with 21 gears for under $1000. Raliegh 20s were good bikes, but if you are taller than 5'10" you'll need an extended seat post, the handlebars will still be too close and it will still have those weak caliper brakes.
    Maybe it's time to give up on those old Ralieghs.

    Eddy

  11. #11
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    "Not to throw sand on anyone's chain, but you can buy a new Dahon coaster brake bike with a chromoly frame, V-brakes and alloy rims for under $200. You can get a Dahon with 21 gears for under $1000. Raliegh 20s were good bikes, but if you are taller than 5'10" you'll need an extended seat post, the handlebars will still be too close and it will still have those weak caliper brakes.
    Maybe it's time to give up on those old Ralieghs."

    of course there is the idea that fixing up old things, like obsolete bicycles, is a fun, rewarding hobbie. or the notion that an interesting and unique bike is a work of art. understandably, buying a brand new bike is going to be easier but as motorhead once said (and i'm certain they were referring to restoring old raleighs...), "the chase is better than the catch".

  12. #12
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Sure, you can do that. Why build a hotrod when you can buy a PT Cruiser or Chrysler Prowler for less? Probably more practical too.

    Or you can have something unique that you built yourself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chambo
    .C M Grange (an English company) is planning to release later this year square taper axles in the correct shell size for the 20 and also the Moulton Mk III
    Steve... ,Chesterfield,England
    Steve,
    Would it be possible for you to provide contact info for CM Grange?
    I'd love to put shorter, lighter cranks on my wife's MkIII.

  14. #14
    Shiftless bum cavit8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eddy m
    Not to throw sand on anyone's chain, but you can buy a new Dahon coaster brake bike with a chromoly frame, V-brakes and alloy rims for under $200. You can get a Dahon with 21 gears for under $1000. Raliegh 20s were good bikes, but if you are taller than 5'10" you'll need an extended seat post, the handlebars will still be too close and it will still have those weak caliper brakes. Maybe it's time to give up on those old Ralieghs.
    Eddy
    All very true, depending on the intended use. Apart from the re-use/conservationist view expressed by Andy (which I also subscribe to) I'm looking for something for loaded touring. The price range pickin's get a lot slimmer. I don't have the $ to drop on Dahon Speed TR or Bike Friday. What also mystifies me, is that many contemporary folders use a vertical hinge. Bikes like the Dahon Helios use an additional strut, but I wonder about the stability of a vertical hinge when loaded. No experience for that, just that an oblique hinge seems much more rationale. There are many other downsides to the 20 (short chainstays is the biggest one in my application), but as much as I've sunk into it, it will still be a fun ride if nothing else.
    Quote Originally Posted by operator
    truneo that tuned park internal nipple wrench work ??

  15. #15
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    C M Grange number is 01279758718, they also stock 16x 1 3/8" alloy rims drilled 28 or plain to drill yourself and may stock some 20" alloy rims too as well as a host of other axles hub bits etc..note the twenty /mk3 axles should be available later this year though not as yet.


    Steve, Chesterfield,England

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    [FONT=Arial Narrow]Hey there seems when i got my little tommy twenty project i didn't think anyone else had ruded one up before. Obviously been banging my head in a locked barn for a while i see.... Wonder if you could tell me the lenth of the shimano bottom bracket you used ? Some nice looking conversions out there have you seen the one with mag wheels floating around the net ... If I find it again i'll pop a link on
    Cheers in advance Timbob

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    To answer one of Andy's original questions... I have just updated my page http://www.rhizomes.nl/twenty.html

    And in it i include my solution for the bottom bracket, namely a different/other solution than most people (even experts) recommend for Twenties. And it is affordable. My local bike store explained that *** (yes that's what the brand is called) make some excellent cartridge bottom brackets, that are even used on some Koga Miyata bikes. The shells are made of hard plastic and some of the versions don't even have threading. Those versions are made to be hammered into Thompson brackets and since the moving parts are in the cartridge the outer part of the shell doesn't need to be mounted rock solid in the frame. As long as it is stuck in fairly good.

    Philipsen recommended installing a BSA *** Bracket with standard 24 TPI threading and a 137 mm axle. He knew from experience that the bracket would go in just fine and that the plastic threading of the shells might be mangled a bit but my bikes metal threading would be just fine (meaning that in the future i could always install other brackets, even with 'proper' threading if desired). The end result was a cheap, durable bracket replacement that feels very stable and smooth.

    I hope that makes some sense.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by v1nce; 08-26-05 at 10:47 PM. Reason: fix

  18. #18
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    That's very nice. Do you have a part number for the *** bearing? What kind of fork did you get?

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    Hey Cheg,

    Thanks for your reply. I was beginning i made some 'faux pas' or something since my other posts remain(ed) without replies. I don't have a part number for the *** but could get it for you if you like. As for the page/Twenty, you've seen nothing yet ha ha. I updated it again today. Hopefully i will be adding new pictures soonish which will properly show off the many new parts. It has turned into a remarkable machine indeed. As for the make of fork. I could find out as well if you'd like. It is just a chromed replacement fork with a very long tube that you have to cut to size. It has a sticker with a gold 'H' logo on it, but that is rather obscure i know. It is of much sturdier construction (fits fat tires) than the original raleigh but not super light (not too much more than the stock fork) or fancy metal. It has less rake than the stock and with the new super smooth headset i can now ride without hands without much difficulty. The new fork is definately good enough and cheap!

    I can also really recomend the Tioga tires! What great speed and comfort!

    My Twenty has cost E 370 total which to me seems like lots of cash but i guess it is very relative. Not so much for the amazing parts it now sports/in comparison with what some other people spend.

    If anyone else has feedback, i would digg that.

    V.

  20. #20
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by v1nce
    Hey Cheg,

    Thanks for your reply. I was beginning i made some 'faux pas' or something since my other posts remain(ed) without replies. I don't have a part number for the *** but could get it for you if you like. As for the page/Twenty, you've seen nothing yet ha ha. I updated it again today. Hopefully i will be adding new pictures soonish which will properly show off the many new parts. It has turned into a remarkable machine indeed. As for the make of fork. I could find out as well if you'd like. It is just a chromed replacement fork with a very long tube that you have to cut to size. It has a sticker with a gold 'H' logo on it, but that is rather obscure i know. It is of much sturdier construction (fits fat tires) than the original raleigh but not super light (not too much more than the stock fork) or fancy metal. It has less rake than the stock and with the new super smooth headset i can now ride without hands without much difficulty. The new fork is definately good enough and cheap!
    It's a threaded steerer tube on the fork, right? I have not found any with steerers long enought, over 250mm long. I had to buy a threadless and have the threads cut at a bike repair shop.

    Quote Originally Posted by v1nce
    I can also really recomend the Tioga tires! What great speed and comfort!
    I have not tried Comp Pools but as you say they are famous for low rolling resistance. I use Primo Comets right now which are the next best thing and much easier to find here.

    Quote Originally Posted by v1nce
    My Twenty has cost E 370 total which to me seems like lots of cash but i guess it is very relative. Not so much for the amazing parts it now sports/in comparison with what some other people spend.
    Don't worry, I probably have about $1000 US invested in mine. I have changed it several times and have enough parts to build two if I can find another frame.

  21. #21
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    Yeah i am almost sure it was threaded but i'll ask my bike shop. It being a replacement fork means it has a crazy long steerer with thread running for most of the length. You just saw it to size. Good stuff. I got a 24 inch version on my ATB/City Tank bike as well (i wrecked the original fork in an accident) for about 8 months now and i am happy with it. Very sturdy, just bit heavier than a more expensive (tend to be double or triple the cost here) version. The 26 version has cantilever option the 20 inch can be bought with braze ons or without i think.
    Last edited by v1nce; 09-02-05 at 10:42 AM.

  22. #22
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    good news about that bottom bracket. my next payout for my 20 was going to be sending away for the phil bb cups and tool. i've been putting it off in hopes that i'd find some other, cheaper solution. here's to procrastination!

    now, let me get this straight. you just jam the cups in? or do you screw them into the wrongly threaded bb threading? i'm sceptical to say the least, although i'm willing to try.

    anyone know if these bbs can be ordered in n.america (prefferably canada)?

  23. #23
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by v1nce
    Yeah i am almost sure it was threaded but i'll ask my bike shop. It being a replacement fork means it has a crazy long steerer with thread running for most of the length. You just saw it to size. Good stuff. I got a 24 inch version on my ATB/City Tank bike as well (i wrecked the original fork in an accident) for about 8 months now and i am happy with it. Very sturdy, just bit heavier than a more expensive (tend to be double or triple the cost here) version. The 26 version has cantilever option the 20 inch doesn't.
    So is the crown drilled for caliper brakes? Too bad about the cantilevers. It would be cool if it had a disk brake mount. Does your local bike shop sell international mail orders?

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    I'll try to find out the model numbers/brands of both parts soonish.

    @ Andy. No no you don't jam the cups, you just screw them in and as the TPi is not so very different (26 and 24) it goes in quite easily, towards the end the going gets a bit tougher but that's it. My local bike store has never told me any BS yet (far from it) and he seemed very confident about this solution. If you can't find the *** and if you'd like we could work something out, i could buy it for you and send it. Trying shouldn't be a big risk as the *** is cheap (see my page for details). Lemme know. Oh yeah i also have some Red Alert LED's (amazing things, no batteries ever, sadly out of production) for sale. Maybe i should start a mail order here ha ha. Holland has amazing parts/deals sometimes.

    @ Cheg. Same for you, if you can't find it i could send it. I am not even sure about the caliper thang, will chk though i would be very amazed if it didn't have the hole. The cantilever thing, well you could have it brazed. Disk brake,.. uhm no afraid not, it really isn't that high end. But more than servicable and cheapo.

    As for mail orders, i am sure my 'Olde Shoppe' does not, i know for a fact they don't even have a website. But perhaps i will get into the mail order bizz

    Hey by the way, you guys know of a place or site to date your Twenty. Mine has a real clear serial NR on the drops outs.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by v1nce; 08-28-05 at 06:13 PM.

  25. #25
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by v1nce
    Hey by the way, you guys know of a place or site to date your Twenty. Mine has a real clear serial NR on the drops outs.

    Cheers.
    This might help:
    http://retroraleighs.com/dating.html

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