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Old 06-12-13, 02:29 PM   #1
smallwheeler
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an unusual old english shopper..

no, this is not a thread about elvis shumaker window-browsing in the local high street. instead, it is a thread about this little charmer:



i happened to find one of these purely by accident. which is to say, i wasn't actively looking for a bike at the time. the first thing i noticed of course, was the 16" 349 wheels! i had never seen a bike like this previously. i immediately thought of the 60's Moultons. and on closer inspection i noted that the cranks (nicklin) and wheel set (rigida) are in fact the same as Moulton. unfortunately, the condition of all the moving parts on this bike were toasted: apparently, someone had decided to replace the bottom bracket bearings with balls of compressed mud. the rims, both front and rear, had numerous dents and a tendency to wobble and bounce dramatically (if i had replaced the wheels with pieces of square sheet metal, i imagine the ride quality would have been similar). to top it off, the sturmey archer 3 speed hub (dated 71) was permanently stuck in "F.U." gear.



i decided to completely disassemble it and see if the bike could be salvaged. i wasted a lot of time trying to repair the wheel set and clean and rebuild the SA hub. eventually, i gave up and started looking for modern wheels. slowly, (very slowly) i had the frame glass bead blasted. amazingly, there was no deep rust or corrosion to the frame. the massive lugs at the bottom bracket and head tube make for a very strong and stiff bike. i had the frame and all the bits powder coated gloss black ( insert datglossblack.jpg here). i suppose i had been thinking about doing a vintage restoration on this bike, but at some point abandoned that idea and decided to modernize it. i wanted to convert this slow shopper bike into a modern 349 mini velo.

i got lucky. i was able to find, in the same week, both a brompton BWR rear wheel and a front wheel from a recumbent bike (100mm hub needed for this fork). to complete the drivetrain, i installed a brompton/stronglight 50t crankset and a good quality shimano sealed bearing bottom bracket taken off an old bike friday llama.

the rear wheel is from a 6 speed brompton, so it has two sprockets. this bike has no derailleur hanger (i wouldnt use it anyway), so the extra sprocket sits there dormantly acting as a spacer. if i wanted different ratios, i could simply swap the sprocket positions.





more to come later..

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Old 06-12-13, 02:36 PM   #2
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Yay!! Beauty Well done.

Keep it comming
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Old 06-12-13, 02:45 PM   #3
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i hemmed and hawed about the handlebars.. i finally decided to go with an old school chromed 1" quill stem and a nitto b123 track bar that i chopped and inverted. tektro bar end levers and brakes seemed like the way to go.

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Old 06-12-13, 02:49 PM   #4
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i'm fairly pleased with the finished result, but there a few changes i'd like to make to make this baby primo.

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Old 06-12-13, 02:56 PM   #5
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i spec'd the brake calipers incorrectly. they are unnecessarily long. meh, i guess that's just an aesthetical nitpick.

i also replaced all the old rusty philips and flat head screws with stainless hex drive bolts. the fenders and rear rack look great all glossy black. the chain guard has some historical dents.. if i'd thought about it at the time, i would have bondo filled those dents prior to painting..




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Old 06-12-13, 02:58 PM   #6
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the seat post is a little short for my needs. that will be my next fix. my old (new) brooks imperial seemed to match the bike perfectly.

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Old 06-12-13, 03:05 PM   #7
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i really like the new sturmey archer shifter. not only does it function so smoothly, it is really nice looking and sturdy. the headset is an old school 1" tange type threaded number.

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Old 06-12-13, 03:09 PM   #8
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anyway, there it is:



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Old 06-12-13, 03:15 PM   #9
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there are a few other ideas i was considering. brazing on a top tube would be cool, but probably completely unnecessary. mounting a brompton carrier block is more likely.

as it is, the bike is super nimble and quite fast. the BWR hub gives me a hill gear, and cruiser gear, and a speed gear. it feels... intentional..

I'm pleased with the project. it looks cool, but more importantly, it is awesome to ride (minus a few minor adjustments). incidentally, the final weight, with rack and fenders is 22 lbs.

vapor:


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Old 06-12-13, 03:52 PM   #10
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that is ....... supercool ...no doubt excellent work
Congrats
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Old 06-12-13, 04:07 PM   #11
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Super cool! Mod of the year (so far). Great to hear about that shifter, Been thinking of maybe buying one or two of them..
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Old 06-12-13, 04:13 PM   #12
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Spectacular concept and execution... now I actually might find myself wanting one of these.
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Old 06-12-13, 04:22 PM   #13
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thanks, guys. that's high praise from three people who know their sh*t. if i could find another one of these i would do it again.
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Old 06-12-13, 04:29 PM   #14
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thanks, guys. that's high praise from three people who know their sh*t. if i could find another one of these i would do it again.
You might need to give up your day job.

Have to point out that the brazing work should usually be done before the powdercoating...
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Old 06-12-13, 04:42 PM   #15
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You might need to give up your day job.

Have to point out that the brazing work should usually be done before the powdercoating...

exactly. but, that's precisely why i shouldn't give up my day job. most of my "ideas" come at the end of a project...
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Old 06-12-13, 04:51 PM   #16
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exactly. but, that's precisely why i shouldn't give up my day job. most of my "ideas" come at the end of a project...
Tell me about it... you finish a job and then think damn... I should have added this or that.

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Old 06-12-13, 04:57 PM   #17
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right! now is the time to think about panniers, not WELDING. haha.

badmother, now i need to review your methodolgy for mounting brompton front carrier blocks...
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Old 06-12-13, 11:24 PM   #18
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Exactry .

One more thing that is best done before powdercoating but no problem.

I remowed some paint around the area before welding and some melted becouse of the welding. I would guess that powdercoating can take the heat better. If you you touch it up and ten add the luggageblock ontop it should look good.

You can of course try a no-welding method but I like welding on steel. Tell us how you do it if you do it . Wery important to measure right so you get it where it should be..

http://www.flickr.com/photos/77836183@N08/7531445422/

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Old 06-13-13, 12:15 AM   #19
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What a fantastic job you've done on that - very pretty skinny frame too, looks far finer in black. Nice touch that you kept the original chainguard.
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Old 06-13-13, 04:13 AM   #20
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thanks, elvis.
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Old 06-13-13, 04:15 AM   #21
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Tell us how you do it if you do it . Wery important to measure right so you get it where it should be..

http://www.flickr.com/photos/77836183@N08/7531445422/
i will. measure 5 times, weld once.
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Old 06-13-13, 04:17 AM   #22
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...Great to hear about that shifter, Been thinking of maybe buying one or two of them..
The SLS shifter is an little gem, inexpensive but beautiful finish and function.
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Old 06-13-13, 05:36 AM   #23
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"Littlepixel likes this"
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Old 06-13-13, 06:08 AM   #24
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N ... ICE (cool)
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Old 06-13-13, 10:08 AM   #25
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Nice work smallwheeler! It's projects like this that made me want to learn how to do bike maintenance. So far, all I've done is clean up my old mountain bike. Once I get the courage, I want to take it apart and put it back together, so one day I will be able to do a "restoration" project on a vintage bike. Good thing I'm practicing on my unused mountain bike instead of my actual current bike, my Brompton raw lacquer I've only had since April 2012.
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