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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 05-24-08, 11:40 PM   #476
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Sianelle - If the sun is shining tomorrow I'll snap a few new pics as the old bike is looking mighty pretty now that she's had some loving... the new Brooks B66 didn't hurt either.
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Old 05-25-08, 06:26 AM   #477
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Oooooooo yes please!
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Old 05-25-08, 07:38 AM   #478
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Well I love the idea of of an old school (or close to it) 3-speed/IGH bicycle for the practicality and utility. I also love a lot of the ideas on bikes from Europe in general since so much of the market there is geared towards a bike as viable transit. So with that in mind, the screwed up little project in my head would be something like:

Using a Mixte frame (kind of an old school throw back to the new step-through bikes that are coming stateside), converting it to a 650b wheel set (not hard considering the French mixtes out there) and an IGH (either 3-speed or something more modern like a 5 or 7). Now to be really adventurous, see about using an IGH set up for disc brakes to avoid some issues with 650b and make a more reliable bike. Throw in a front dynohub and 1-2 (modern) generator lights, Wald front basket and a really awesome rack produced here locally.

What can I say, I want a unique ride. I know I could probably just buy something pretty darn close. I would just love to see the looks to be honest. For me it would be the challenge of designing the thing, scrounging the parts and getting it together.
Have you seen the Velo-Orange website? (duck and cover)

He is offering a lot of stuff that is right along with your way of thinking. I am in the process of accumulating parts to build up a Gentleman's City Bike on an old Moby frame that I have lying around....like I NEEDED another project at the moment.

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Old 05-25-08, 07:54 AM   #479
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Actually I have seen Velo-Orange. There are a few parts from there that will probably go on this frankenbike of mine.
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Old 05-25-08, 06:18 PM   #480
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I am still playing with the idea of a 3spd but based upon a more recent road frame--like my now-retired Panasonic. I've got a hub that needs pawls, and a friend has a 40 hole 700c rim for me. Now I just need lots of other parts--like chainguard, better saddle, spokes, North Road bars... ! I also need to go find those old threads about conversions. In the end, I'm hoping for a bike that I can easily wrench on (no strange English threading!) and can give a relaxing ride for short, fun trips.
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Old 05-29-08, 08:28 PM   #481
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Lengthier post in C&V, but trying to figure this out since searches (everywhere-even Sheldon's site) are bringing up nothing. Anyone have info on a "Cavalier" 1950's English 3-speed?

More than likely grabbing this one over the weekend as good, true, classic 3 speeds seem to be rare in my area. Or I am not looking hard enough. Looking mostly at fair value, as there is no price listed and the owner has no clue.
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Old 05-29-08, 10:34 PM   #482
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Oooooooo yes please!
For Sianelle...

The sun was shining and the lilacs are in bloom so when it came down to choosing what I was going to ride there was really no choice... one had to Rudge it...not trudge it.

Riding this bike invokes a sense of calmness and peace... it can go quite fast but why would one want to do that when the ride is so incredible ?




1948 Rudge Whitworth
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Old 05-30-08, 06:38 AM   #483
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Earlier quote: "Unless something breaks in the BB, you never have to take it apart. Just squirt oil down the seattube at regular intervals. Older 3spds had oil ports in the BB, the oil down the seat tube is the same principle."

The idea of oil lubrication for bottom brackets has long intrigued me. John Forrester explores the concept in Effective Cycling, and I can appreciate some of the benefits of oil lubing.

But oil mixed with grease will thin out the grease, so wouldn't oil introduced into a greased bottom bracket bearing tend to actually result in less lubrication?

I have two Raleigh Sportses that have oil ports on the front hub, bottom bracket and, of course, the SA hub. (Clearly, the hub needs oil for its non-bearing mechanism, regardless of one's thoughts on oil lubing in general.)

Why not, instead of having an oil port, have a zerk fitting so you could squirt pressurized grease into the bearing? That would really keep the bearing crud flushed out, be cleaner (no drips of oil), and provide longer-lasting lubrication.

I read about some guy who made a bike for beach/surf cycling and he used zerk fittings to basically fill the bike's tubes full of grease. Kinda heavy on land, but I guess grease is buoyant in water.

One of the interesting things about old Raleighs is how well thought out they are, and I really haven't been able to, in my mind, reconcile oil lubrication issue.

Mark
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Old 05-30-08, 08:39 AM   #484
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I have 3 "oilers"... the Rudge is one of them as is my '55 Raleigh Lenton Sports and '54 Raleigh Sports (road bikes).

Despite their advancing years, these are some seriously smooth running bikes as oil is a better lubricant than grease but unlike greased bearings, does have to be topped up pretty regularly.

The oil also flushes out contaminants quite well.
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Old 05-31-08, 01:43 PM   #485
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May be posting my own 3-speed by next week. Seller is holding it for me and I am waiting to hear back on my offer.
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Old 05-31-08, 02:47 PM   #486
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But oil mixed with grease will thin out the grease, so wouldn't oil introduced into a greased bottom bracket bearing tend to actually result in less lubrication?

Grease is a mixture of oil and a soap base. It is the oil in the grease that does the lubricating, the soap is just to keep it in position. When the oil is depleated, you end up with just the soap, and that is the "hard grease" you have to clean out when repacking bearings.

So the answer is NO, you don't reduce the lubrication by thinning grease with oil. You loose the property of grease that holds the oil in the bearing, so you have to service the bearing more frequently.
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Old 05-31-08, 08:00 PM   #487
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For Sianelle...

The sun was shining and the lilacs are in bloom so when it came down to choosing what I was going to ride there was really no choice... one had to Rudge it...not trudge it.

Riding this bike invokes a sense of calmness and peace... it can go quite fast but why would one want to do that when the ride is so incredible ?




1948 Rudge Whitworth
Oh my word! What a beautiful Rudge! Thankyou very much for posting this photograph

On the subject of oil lubed bicycles I have a Hercules Roadster and a Raleigh Sports that are 'oilers' and they are waaaaay smoother bicycles to ride than a 'greaser' bike. Both bicycles are rolling around on their original bearings and a touch of the oil can is all they need from time to time to keep them rolling smoothly (I have this nice ex-NZ Railways steam era oilcan which is perfect for the job ).
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Old 06-05-08, 09:01 PM   #488
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Oil lube

I can't think of any current mainstream cyclemakers that use oil lubrication and that's probably because most people are sold on sealed bearings. Do any of the exotic manufacturers feature oil lube? If it's that great, you'd think somebody[/i] would be doing it today.

Do you think that instead of an oil cup a zerk fitting and frequent greasing with a grease gun (grease forced in so that the old, dirty grease would ooze out) would be better than frequent oil lube? At least it would be cleaner; I recall someone who tried oil lubing found it kind of messy.

Regards,

Mark
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Old 06-05-08, 09:49 PM   #489
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My oilers are like old Harley Davidson motorcycles after they are serviced and I lay a cloth beneath them to catch any excess oil.

The oil that does run out is just as clean as the oil that goes in and any bike with an open seat post and a three piece bb can be oiled... hubs will of course need oil ports.

It's also an old race technique to use oil instead of grease as it reduces friction and makes things spin much smoother.
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Old 06-06-08, 05:06 AM   #490
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Yes it's true an 'oiler' bicycle can get messy if you let it get that way, but not if you wipe up the excess oil with a clean cotton rag. Modern bike makers don't do the 'oiler' thing anymore because most folk wouldn't have a clue about basic maintenance and keeping a bicycle properly wiped down and clean. Besides the cost of machining out hubs, BBs & etc for oil fittings and the cost of the oil fittings themselves has proved by time to be a target for the bean counters who run most bicycle manufacturing plants these days.
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Old 06-06-08, 11:04 PM   #491
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I do believe paraffin is the wax, I think paraphine is what they call kerosene over there. Also since the book I was talking about mentioned melting it in a can on the stove, I think we can dispense with with the idea they were talking about kerosene.

I also recall that the book had a lot about the old British style touring in it. Of course I was all of ten back then and may be misremembering.

Did I mention that I LOVE old three speed bikes?

Yes, neat pictures of British cyclocross and club rides and the like, and even photo of a recumbent, and ads in the back for Simplex gears and Lucas headlamps and Sturmey Archer and other very British paraphernalia. I love those old three speed "English racers" too!
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Old 06-06-08, 11:07 PM   #492
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One thing I never knew about was the trick that's mentioned here about lubing the bottom bracket by dropping oil down the seat tube. I never read anything about that in the old Cycling & Mopeds manuals, or anyplace else, either.
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Old 06-07-08, 04:32 PM   #493
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Old 06-07-08, 04:50 PM   #494
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Their classic pathracer is just sooooooooo sexy
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Old 06-08-08, 07:58 AM   #495
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Yes it's true an 'oiler' bicycle can get messy if you let it get that way, but not if you wipe up the excess oil with a clean cotton rag. Modern bike makers don't do the 'oiler' thing anymore because most folk wouldn't have a clue about basic maintenance and keeping a bicycle properly wiped down and clean. Besides the cost of machining out hubs, BBs & etc for oil fittings and the cost of the oil fittings themselves has proved by time to be a target for the bean counters who run most bicycle manufacturing plants these days.
I also suspect that the quality of grease has improved a bit over the 1908 stuff. Also as machining has become more precise...

I love my "oilers" but really don't want to bring them in the house.

Aaron
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Old 06-08-08, 08:02 PM   #496
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I have read this thread on and off all day and have not finished it yet . First off Elkhound I used to ride over coal mountain On a huffy three speed. I left the 3 speed at moms house and had a schwinn 10 speed at dads
I was more worried about not getting to fast going down the other side I took a few white knuckle rides down hills on that schwinn (fast enough that I pasted several cars) this was when I was mid teens and 100# lighter I would have a hard time doing it now
second you nay sayers on the three speeds need to realise not every one is into the lightest, fastest, thing out there for some of us riding an old school bike is more important than light and fast I most bikes made in the last 20 years just don't inspired me to want to ride. the dutch style bikes excluded
all though I don't have an english bike I have a schwinn 3 speed and a german made bike that looks like the paschley(sp?) step through frame that is currently tored down for painting and going though and find them enjoyable to run to the store or cruise around on for exercise
Roy
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Old 06-09-08, 04:55 PM   #497
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I am in love with three speeds. Just picked mine up today. Other than a few minor changes, she'll stay the same and be a great city bike. Anyone have an idea on what I have here? As posted earlier, numerous searches have turned up nothing.





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Old 06-09-08, 05:49 PM   #498
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It could be a 'B' range bicycle by Raleigh in Nottingham. If you placed an order of a certain size with Raleigh for bicycles they would put any name you liked on them.

Nice bike though and definitely worth keeping and enjoying
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Old 06-09-08, 05:57 PM   #499
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I have seen one other post about this type of bike here on BF. I also have seen reference to a "Cavalier Bicycle Company" here in the states founded 1890s. The SA date on the hub is '52, very light surface rust and mostly to the wheels. I have a vintage pump that fits right into the frame that came with it.

Thinking of having an alloy set of wheels made, either cleaning up and reusing the existing hub or using a newer model. Also a dyno hub and lights and maybe wider upright handle bars with shellacked cork grips.

ETA

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Old 06-09-08, 06:59 PM   #500
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Just dropped some oil on the chain and took her for a nice evening ride through the apartment complex property. Brakes need work, new tires and tubes, either need to true the wheels or get new ones made. Awesome, though. 3 speeds are the epitome of what a bike should be: practical, elegant in its simplicity and bomb proof. No other bike has ever brought a smile to my face like this one.
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