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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 04-30-07, 02:58 PM   #1
thebikeguy
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Auto Mini folding bike

Does anyone know who built the Auto Mini folding bike? Headbadge says Executive. Made in Austria. I have a couple of Raleigh Twentys and they are quite a bit heavier than the Auto Minis. The plate that the rear brake and fender bolt to has ESGEE and Pletcher stamped into it. It has a different 2 piece pedal system. Where the one pedal arm unbolts(w/cotter). Just wondering because I have 5 of them and if they're worth fixing up. I have a few other folders as well. No Stridas or anything like that. All older.

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Old 04-30-07, 04:00 PM   #2
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I heard them referred as Norse Auto-Mini if that help. Other than that I have no info.

I may have 2 of them but they don't have any sticker not sure how original state they are. I have one with a 3 speed Sturmey-Archer internal gear except the shifter is missing. I got them from a garage sell and those were my first folder so I don't know much about them but I realy like them so far.
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Old 05-04-07, 06:44 AM   #3
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Hello friends of vintage Auto Mini bikes.
I have got something weird for you... I seriously pimped ma Auto Mini Bike.
I just put all the parts on l had flying around. Now it is a wild hot-rod. It actually rides delightful and is very light and rather stiff.
The part-list will give you a good laugh:
Wheels: Alex Rims Da16, Shimano600 Hubs, Continental Sport Contact Tires.
Breaks: Campagnolo Athena (rear), Campagnolo Veloce Short Lever (front)
Chainwheel: 72T CNC milled.
Crank, Bottom Bracket, Derailer, Levers: Shimano600
vintage 3TTT Handlebars.

How do you like it?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg AutoMini06.JPG (72.3 KB, 270 views)
File Type: jpg AutoMini05.JPG (66.6 KB, 135 views)
File Type: jpg AutoMini04.JPG (90.5 KB, 141 views)
File Type: jpg AutoMini03.JPG (58.7 KB, 86 views)
File Type: jpg AutoMini02.JPG (89.8 KB, 115 views)
File Type: jpg AutoMini01.JPG (58.3 KB, 103 views)
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Old 05-04-07, 07:15 AM   #4
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Looks great, but I dunno about reaching under the seat to shift! Somewhere I have some old Suntour butterfly shifters; I'd put one of those up on the handlebar. Who needs SIS anyway?
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Old 05-04-07, 07:17 AM   #5
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Brilliant - the chainring is nearly as big as the wheels...
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Old 05-04-07, 08:18 AM   #6
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wow!

I thought the 60T on my boardwalk 6 was big! I really like the handlebars are they northroads or moustache bars?
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Old 05-04-07, 08:26 AM   #7
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Wher do you find such a huge chainwheel?? The bike is nice!
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Old 05-04-07, 06:43 PM   #8
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Hey, thanks for your postings.

Switching under the seat is actually not much a problem. The idea on this is to avoid as much as possible to have cables going from the handlebars to the rear. The cables make kind of a mess when folding.

The chainwheel was custom made by a guy in germany. He has some serious machines at hand and does custom chainwheels for fair prices. The 72T on 20 inch equals about a 52T on a 28inch bike. It looks weird but is about normal gear-ratio.

The handlebars are a real treasure. They are vintage racing-handlebars. I love them. Probably they will go on one of my "serious" bikes soon.
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Old 05-04-07, 07:26 PM   #9
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What a beautiful build up on the Mini!
I've read that the Mini used a non-standard bottom bracket - what did you use for your BB?
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Old 05-04-07, 09:04 PM   #10
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Beautiful bike, Zepi!

I've been thinking of doing a similar shifter position with my Crescent separable bike for the same reasons you had (less cables). Did the machinest that made your chainring also do the machining for the triangular piece of metal you've got your rear brake attached to, or did you make it yourself?

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Old 05-04-07, 09:13 PM   #11
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zepi,

Excelent piece of machinery!
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Old 05-05-07, 04:31 AM   #12
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The break-thing is done by myself. It is a simple 10mm aluminum piece. It is not very elegant but working excellent. Sheldon Brown did something similar on his Raleigh Twenty.

I replaced the original bottom bracket with a 40mm BB that is stuck in the tube with a hammer. I don't know the english expression for that. It is doing a good job.
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Old 05-07-07, 09:43 PM   #13
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Those pedals look AWEFULLY close to the ground. Not much clearance. Maybe put a longer set of forks on it to gain some needed space.
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Old 05-07-07, 09:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebikeguy
Those pedals look AWEFULLY close to the ground. Not much clearance. Maybe put a longer set of forks on it to gain some needed space.
bike guy, you are right. Sepi, did you consider using 451 mm wheels instead 406 mm wheels? For sure you would gain 20 mm of clearence.
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Old 05-10-07, 06:01 AM   #15
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Or ,you could get shorter crank arms to increase clearance.
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Old 05-10-07, 06:22 AM   #16
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Clearance is actually not a big problem on this bike. Maybe I will build a pair of 451mm wheels, in order to have one at hand for other projects.
The bigest problem on this bike is: the chain comes off when switching on the higher gears. The reason for that is the huge chainwheel. I fitted an old front derailer to keep the chain in place, but this makes the chain scratch the derailer in some gears. Everything runns smooth with my favourite ratio: 16/72, and I am used to ride my fixed-gear swift folder, so I do not switch much anyway. (The swift folder is ment to ride fixed gear, otherwise it would have been called SWITCH FOLDER... but this belongs to a different topic)
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Old 05-14-07, 08:59 AM   #17
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Cool Auto Mini

Quote:
Originally Posted by zepi
Clearance is actually not a big problem on this bike. Maybe I will build a pair of 451mm wheels, in order to have one at hand for other projects.
The bigest problem on this bike is: the chain comes off when switching on the higher gears. The reason for that is the huge chainwheel. I fitted an old front derailer to keep the chain in place, but this makes the chain scratch the derailer in some gears. Everything runns smooth with my favourite ratio: 16/72, and I am used to ride my fixed-gear swift folder, so I do not switch much anyway. (The swift folder is ment to ride fixed gear, otherwise it would have been called SWITCH FOLDER... but this belongs to a different topic)
Maybe the chain is coming off due to alignment issues with the casette in relation to the chainring. The auto mini wasn't designed to use a derailler. Maybe if you shimmed the back wheel to move it non curb side(away from the derailler) you might find that it works better. Just a thought. Cool bike nonetheless.

Last edited by thebikeguy; 05-14-07 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 05-14-07, 08:17 PM   #18
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Can I add OMG OMG that chainwheel?
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Old 05-20-07, 02:52 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1oddmanout
Can I add OMG OMG that chainwheel?
What is that?
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Old 05-20-07, 03:16 PM   #20
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OMG = Oh My God
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Old 08-26-07, 10:14 AM   #21
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The bike didn't work too well with all the gears and cables, so I came up with something new. It is really much better now. See for your self:
It is not completed yet, but I will post some pictures as soon as it is done.

I changed the rear hub to the legendary TORPEDO Duomatic. This nixes all the cables routing to the rear of the bike and still offers a rear break and even TWO GEARS! WOW!
That TORPEDO DUOMATIC hub originally came with some of the Auto Mini's (not with mine, so I got a NOS somewhere). I had the chance to test one of those hubs and it performed so E X C E L L E N T that I had to have one. As soon as you get used to the back-pedal-switch trick, the ride is PERFECT. Also it is really great, if you do not want to have cables all over your bike but still want more than one gear. It does 1:1 and 1:1.36 on gear-ratio, what really works for me. This hub is in the same league as the Sturmey Archer ASC. Something for the lazy bike-purists.

I also got the cable for the front break routed inside the stem and fork. It was kind of a coincidence that this trick worked out so well, but it is really cool. I can spin the handlebars without twisting the cables. That is also handy when folding the bike. Nothing can be caught up or bang against something.

Last but not least I got slick handlebar that can be cutted real short. This is also convenient when folding the bike and feels kind of sporty. And of course a better looking saddle. An old brooks-style leather sportsman saddle. Also cool on this bike.



Ok, more photos of this wild ride as soon as it is done.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSC04520.JPG (84.7 KB, 86 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04521.JPG (92.9 KB, 82 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04522.JPG (77.2 KB, 67 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04523.JPG (92.7 KB, 64 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04524.JPG (93.0 KB, 66 views)

Last edited by zepi; 08-28-07 at 05:43 AM.
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Old 08-26-07, 12:58 PM   #22
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that auto mini is insane! I see so many of them here in Toronto, never imagined what you have. With the gear ratio, its functional and just MEAN...
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Old 08-28-07, 01:54 AM   #23
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This setup really works. It rides just perfect. Gearing: 19 T on 72 T with a 1:1 and a second 1:1.36 Gear. I just can not stop praising the Duomatic hub.

The ground-clearance is still very tight, but I will put on a pair of slim triangle-racing pedals. That will do the job. Also I thought about re-drilling and shortening the crank. Is that possible?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSC04525.JPG (77.4 KB, 124 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04528.JPG (71.9 KB, 41 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04527.JPG (87.4 KB, 51 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04533.JPG (92.6 KB, 39 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04529.JPG (52.2 KB, 38 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04530.JPG (50.7 KB, 31 views)
File Type: jpg DSC04531.JPG (47.7 KB, 36 views)

Last edited by zepi; 08-28-07 at 05:49 AM.
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Old 09-08-07, 05:16 PM   #24
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I don't think you should mess with that beautiful crank. Try (just as an experiment)putting a set of 26" mtn. bike forks on it. I've used this with some success trying to gain pedal clearance. You'll lose the front brake(unless you can weld a bracket ). It shoudn't take up that much more room folded.Worth a try. Yes the duo-matic is cool. Used to be known as the secret weapon. Is it just my bike or do you find the steering twitchy? Like the steering angle is too sharp. Should be raked out a bit. Must be a wild ride at higher speeds.Cool bike.
Here's a pic of mine......

Last edited by thebikeguy; 09-09-07 at 05:24 PM.
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