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  1. #1
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    The first of two Raleigh Twenties just arrived

    About four hours ago Fedex arrived with the first of two Raleigh Twenties I've bought. I'll post photos tomorrow (I've taken quite a few as I unpacked and assembled the bike).

    I'm already in love with it. I had a neighborhood meeting about a hour after it arrived, so I rapidly assembled it, adjusted everything as best I could in a half hour, and made the five block ride to the meeting its maiden voyage (at least with respect to my ownership). It handled very well, in fact better than any small tired bike I've ridden.

  2. #2
    Raleigh20 PugFixie, Merc LittlePixel's Avatar
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    And there starts the obsession
    Great to hear! Look forward to seeing pic / hearing more tales...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittlePixel View Post
    And there starts the obsession
    Great to hear! Look forward to seeing pic / hearing more tales...
    Yeah, I'm already getting to the obsessive stage. I used the Twenty for my commute in this morning. I posted a brief note on the How Was Your Commute thread on the Commuting forum.

    It was a very fun ride. The low gear isn't really low enough for the hills around here, and I'll need to replace these rims soon for stopping power in the rain, but I could just about live with the bike as it is.

  4. #4
    rhm
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    multimodal commuter rhm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by larryfeltonj View Post
    The low gear isn't really low enough for the hills around here.
    My Twenty came with a 15 tooth sprocket on the hub, which I changed to an 18, which is very easily done. That made a big improvement. But I don't do any hills on it, and still hardly ever use the top gear.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhm View Post
    My Twenty came with a 15 tooth sprocket on the hub, which I changed to an 18, which is very easily done. That made a big improvement. But I don't do any hills on it, and still hardly ever use the top gear.
    I'll think about whether changing off the sprocket will give me a low enough gear. That may be something to look at even if I also change the hub. Atlanta's piedmont, so most areas I ride are hilly.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Here's one of the photos I took immediately after assembly

    Last edited by larryfeltonj; 07-20-07 at 02:09 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Zonker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by larryfeltonj View Post
    I'll think about whether changing off the sprocket will give me a low enough gear. That may be something to look at even if I also change the hub. Atlanta's piedmont, so most areas I ride are hilly.
    Nice looking ride, wouldn't mind checking that out in person. If you want to come out to Smyrna and ride the Silver Comet Trail with me, I have a Bike Friday on the way, was shipped yesterday! Speaking of which: I sold a Litespeed Tuscany today, to make room (physically and financially) for the BF...now I know what this line truly means..."it was the best of times, it was the worst of times!"
    waiting for a (Bike) Friday!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zonker View Post
    Nice looking ride, wouldn't mind checking that out in person. If you want to come out to Smyrna and ride the Silver Comet Trail with me, I have a Bike Friday on the way, was shipped yesterday! Speaking of which: I sold a Litespeed Tuscany today, to make room (physically and financially) for the BF...now I know what this line truly means..."it was the best of times, it was the worst of times!"
    Sure. I'm out that direction several times a week since my fiance lives off Oakdale Road on the edge of Smyrna.

  9. #9
    Bicycling Gnome
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    Quote Originally Posted by larryfeltonj View Post
    Here's one of the photos I took immediately after assembly

    That's a beauty. There aren't that many of these on sale on Ebay UK. Those that do appear are grotty by comparison to that one.

    If I were you I'd keep it original. It looks a perfect example. Shame to mess with such a pristine example.
    Last edited by EvilV; 07-20-07 at 03:50 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilV View Post
    That's a beauty. There aren't that many of these on sale on Ebay UK. Those that do appear are grotty by comparison to that one.

    If I were you I'd keep it original. It looks a perfect example. Shame to mess with such a pristine example.
    Yeah, it's a bit of a dilemma for me. On the one hand it is a beautiful bike as is, and I'd like to keep the appearance as near to it's current state as possible. On the other hand I get my bikes for daily use, and several characteristics make the bike unsuitable for the terrain here.

    For the time being I'm going to ride it without making any modifications while I mull it over. I've already decided not to change the fork, stem, or bars unless something's actively damaged. I'm also not going to convert it to dérailleur or fixed gear or paint or modify the frame.

    The rims and the gears are the areas where I see the most need for upgrade, and I can probably do that without changing the appearance significantly.

    At any rate for the time being I'm just going to ride, tune, and adjust and learn it's quirks.

  11. #11
    Steel,Friction,Freewheels
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    Congratulations on such a nice find. Truely! The painted fenders (not chrome), the one piece pedals, and the one piece bar/stem are all original details not repeated on many of the US imported Twenties. Would be interesting to date this bike. Locate your serial number and visit the Retro Raleigh page.
    Only other detail would be to locate a Raleigh rear white tray rack & bag to compliment all this original equipment.

    I hope your 2nd Twenty is not so perfect. Then you can customize it for your commute and keep this one looking like it belongs on the showroom floor.

    You're lucky to have hills in Atlanta. Enjoy!
    Guy R. - Tampa

  12. #12
    Senior Member Zonker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by larryfeltonj View Post
    Sure. I'm out that direction several times a week since my fiance lives off Oakdale Road on the edge of Smyrna.
    Sounds great, I just found your email address and emailed you my mobile number. I'm about .9 miles from the trailhead at Mavell Road. I should have my Bike Friday delivered by next Thursday, should be ready to ride by....Friday!
    waiting for a (Bike) Friday!

  13. #13
    Senior Member
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    There's really nothing in the article I haven't posted here already, but I've written a blog article on my first few days with the bike at
    http://larryfeltonjohnson.typepad.co...eigh-twen.html

  14. #14
    my nice bike is at home kraftwerk's Avatar
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    Wow, It looks Brand New! is it N.O.S. ?? Mine is a total beater, alas.
    By the way I saw a 20 all original but reealy negleted for 100$ in the neighborhood ( Moving the junk shop on Driggs and N10th approx. Brooklyn) I passed on it , way too pricey, and the one I have should last a lifetime!

  15. #15
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by kraftwerk View Post
    Wow, It looks Brand New! is it N.O.S. ?? Mine is a total beater, alas.
    By the way I saw a 20 all original but reealy negleted for 100$ in the neighborhood ( Moving the junk shop on Driggs and N10th approx. Brooklyn) I passed on it , way too pricey, and the one I have should last a lifetime!
    What does NOS stand for? It took bidding on quite a few to get this one, and at this point the going rate for a Twenty in good shape seems to be a bit over $200. I consider myself lucky, in that I was going solely by the photos on eBay and the word of the seller.

  16. #16
    Senior Member ricohman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kraftwerk View Post
    Wow, It looks Brand New! is it N.O.S. ?? Mine is a total beater, alas.
    By the way I saw a 20 all original but reealy negleted for 100$ in the neighborhood ( Moving the junk shop on Driggs and N10th approx. Brooklyn) I passed on it , way too pricey, and the one I have should last a lifetime!
    $100??
    I paid $30 for mine.


  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricohman View Post
    $100??
    I paid $30 for mine.

    Looks nice. Unfortunately (for me anyhow) Raleigh Twenties on eBay seem to attract a lot of bidders. My best sub-50 dollar
    finds have been at thrift stores when I was just generically looking for good deals, with no particular bike in mind except for broad criteria (as in "70s road bike with good steel frame and horizontal dropouts")

    As for price I've got no regrets. I paid five times as much for my Raleigh road bike, and a quarter as much for my old Peugeot. In each case I paid what I needed to for what I wanted.

  18. #18
    Senior Member ricohman's Avatar
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    I bought mine out of a older lady's garage a month or two ago.
    I had an add in the local paper looking for older bikes for a vintage ride I was organinzing and this is one of the 5 Twentys I looked at.
    All were under $40. Two were in very good condition and the others were decent but not mint condition. I live in an area with little or no demand for older bikes like these. Maybe I should go back and buy all of them?
    BTW I like the color of yours better than the brown color on mine. The green looks very British.
    And is there a masking line on your rear fender where the paint colors are seperated?
    My Twenty is now my official camping bike.
    Last edited by ricohman; 07-24-07 at 03:42 PM.

  19. #19
    jur
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    Wow.
    My folding bike photo essays www.dekter.net/

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricohman View Post
    I bought mine out of a older lady's garage a month or two ago.
    I had an add in the local paper looking for older bikes for a vintage ride I was organinzing and this is one of the 5 Twentys I looked at.
    All were under $40. Two were in very good condition and the others were decent but not mint condition. I live in an area with little or no demand for older bikes like these. Maybe I should go back and buy all of them?
    BTW I like the color of yours better than the brown color on mine. The green looks very British.
    And is there a masking line on your rear fender where the paint colors are seperated?
    My Twenty is now my official camping bike.
    If by masking line you mean the line where the plane of the white coat extends further out than the green coat (where the green portion was presumably masked) yes. If you mean something else tell me what to look for and I'll take a look and let you know. I'm not sure what the overall economics of selling stuff on eBay is, but if you can get Raleigh Twenties in decent shape for under $40 you might want to consider accumulating and selling them. Presumably good specimens are going for over 200, and even the non-folder I'm waiting on was over 100.

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