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  1. #51
    ---- buzzman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike
    Funny, that is completely different from my experience. I commuted on a Raleigh for years. I put on at least 6,000 miles per year on that bike for about five years. The Sturmey Archer hub required very little maintanance other than oil. IF the shifter cable tension got out of whack like when I changed a tire, then yes, it was a pain in the ash, but once it was dialed back in, it remained faithful and reliable.

    I still marvel at the efficiency of those old steel machines. It was not uncommon to average 19 to 22 mph on longer trips and even around 16 to 18 mph in the city when commuting. That is not much less than the averages I get on my modern road bike. All the while, your body is in a comfortable cruising position.

    Many great bicycle touring trips have been done by millions of folks on English 3-speed bicycles in addition to the daily transportation provided for a generation that was less dependant on motor vehicle transportation than we are today.
    Agreed. I did thousands of miles on my Raleigh 3 speed. Including touring with panniers and tents. We'd pop a little bigger rear sprocket on the back and a few extra chain links and have a lower geared set up and spin like crazy down hill. Given the current love affair with FG and SS bikes we had three times the choices of gearing.

    And the 28" Raleigh 3 speed I'm rebuilding. I loved riding it in Florida and have to admit to getting a real charge out of rolling by cyclists on their Ti and Carbon Fiber frames decked out in their lycra finest as I pumped away on Rt. 1A on this big old bike with bermuda shorts and a t-shirt. Nothing slow about that bike in the right conditions.

  2. #52
    Never get out of the boat Gabbo's Avatar
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    I suppose the issue differs from place to place. Where I live, the classic utility bike would be nasty to get around on. Way too hilly where I live. So I get around via road bike.

    And I'm the odd man out when it comes to bike commuting. There are a lot of weekend warriors in my neck of the woods, but not too many road bike commuters.

    BUT, there are a ton of Latin American immigrants who get around by bike or a combo of bike and bus where I live. Their bike of choice? The cheesy, discount store mountain bikes, which seem to take a pretty good deal of abuse seeing as how they're daily transportation for these folks.

    PS: I forgot to mention that back in the 70s, when I was growing up in Ohio, my dad commuted by a good ole Raleigh with an S.A. three speed hub, and I'm in the middle of rebuilding a Schwinn stardust for my daughters that has an S.A. three speed. God lub 'em!
    Last edited by Gabbo; 01-10-07 at 02:02 AM.

  3. #53
    Senior Member mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc
    +1

    I got it back it had been wrecked, the fork replaced and the offside crank arm, the oil cap was missing off the rear hub and it was making a grinding sound. I stuck in the shed until a couple of months ago, put a new oil cap on it, added a couple good squirts of oil readjusted the cable and rode it 3 miles, it shifts just fine and still rides just like it used to. I don't know of too many other bike that you can do that with.
    Aaron
    Nice rescue. Sounds like the bike suffered from inconsiderate abuse. That is a shame.

    Do the bike a favor and at least rinse the hub in solvent to get any grit out. You semi-disassemble the hub and that will be good enough. Just take off the hub cover. Be careful with the spring that is just inside the cover - don't lose it and make a note of how it goes back.

    Thoroughly rinse the inside of the hub from both sides. Use a petrolium based solvent that will evaporate easily and cut the crud. Gasoline would work, but it is dangerously explosive. Paint thinner and kerosine would work OK too. You should be able to flush out some grit.

    Let the hub dry completely so that all the solvent is gone. Wipe some new grease on the bearings and re-assemble. Then, of course, add oil through the oil hole in the hub. Phil Woods makes a nice oil for this purpose.

    Thanks for keeping the old British racer alive.
    Mike

  4. #54
    Senior Member mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabbo
    BUT, there are a ton of Latin American immigrants who get around by bike or a combo of bike and bus where I live. Their bike of choice? The cheesy, discount store mountain bikes, which seem to take a pretty good deal of abuse seeing as how they're daily transportation for these folks.
    That is cool. I admire the immigrants for bicycle commuting, although most of them bicycle because they don't have automobiles - same as any red blooded American.

    I worked at a factory that had a lot of immigrant labor. Many of them bicycled to work. I was the only executive that bicycle commuted and they got a kick out of seeing me park my bike next to theirs on the bicycle rack while my assigned parking spot near the building entrance was left empty. I would peel the gaitors off my legs, take off the balaclava from my melon, turn into office superman, and walk to the office.

    I would keep my eyes on the bikes on the racks and give parts to the guys that needed them. I have a huge parts supply from my years of collecting bikes, so I have plenty of parts to keep their old machines working. I alway got a kick out of giving a guy a new saddle. Nothing brought more appreciation than replacing a torn up old saddle with a plush new springer saddle. I would also give reflectors, brake pads, handle grips or whatever else I noticed where I could help out.

    I also gave bicycles to immigrants so they could commute to work. I gave a husband-wife pair of Raleigh 3-speeds to... you guessed it a husband and wife immigrant couple. They used the bikes to go everywhere together until, sadly, someone stole the man's bike while they were picnicking at a park.
    Mike

  5. #55
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike
    That is cool. I admire the immigrants for bicycle commuting, although most of them bicycle because they don't have automobiles - same as any red blooded American...
    I would keep my eyes on the bikes on the racks and give parts to the guys that needed them. I have a huge parts supply from my years of collecting bikes, so I have plenty of parts to keep their old machines working. I alway got a kick out of giving a guy a new saddle. Nothing brought more appreciation than replacing a torn up old saddle with a plush new springer saddle. I would also give reflectors, brake pads, handle grips or whatever else I noticed where I could help out.

    I also gave bicycles to immigrants so they could commute to work. I gave a husband-wife pair of Raleigh 3-speeds to... you guessed it a husband and wife immigrant couple. They used the bikes to go everywhere together until, sadly, someone stole the man's bike while they were picnicking at a park.
    I admire your helping out some REAL Real Cyclists. Keep up the good work.

    BTW, I assume none of your biking coworkers moan or groan about not being able to put out 400 watts at all times when commuting.

  6. #56
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by -=£em in Pa=-
    This has been posted before so please forgive the redundancy, but this
    comes pretty close except for the corner cutting exposed drive train.
    At about 180.00 it seems like a good deal.

    www.pakebikes.com
    Now there is something in the right price range for 'normal' folks of modest means who don't want to spend a month's pay for a bicycle.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  7. #57
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Mike,
    The whole bike is scheduled for a tear down and overhaul this year. Cudak888 and I have been trying to pin down the exact model of it. It is a bit of an anomaly it is definitely a early 70's vintage Sports, but it came with Endrick rims. I think it maybe a Sports Standard vs a Sports Deluxe. The AW hub has no date stamp on it. (need to check the front one) I have ordered a new left crank arm for it. I am looking for a replacement fork. My brother was definitely the one that wrecked it, but I think his roomate was the one that ran it without the oil cap But it is back home to stay I am torn between a full restoration vs a clean it up and keep it as a shaggy dog. I have very nice Superbe (courtesy of a fellow board member) that I use for my weekend cruising. I just wish I still had some of the ones I have had in the past, like a Phillips and a Popular Special, and my dad's 63 Sports. I have other bikes (some even have derailleurs ) that I do ride on occasion but my first love will always be the internalled geared English 3 speeds. I guess there must be some truth to the saying that "there'll always be an England"

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  8. #58
    Senior Member dynodonn's Avatar
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    I know this doesn't pertain to English 3 speeds, but since I owned a Indian Chief 3 speed many years ago, I would like to know if anyone has some info or know of a website that has info about this bike. I'm just doing some remeniscing.

  9. #59
    Senior Member mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
    I admire your helping out some REAL Real Cyclists. Keep up the good work.

    BTW, I assume none of your biking coworkers moan or groan about not being able to put out 400 watts at all times when commuting.
    You are correct, no mention at all about wattage from our imported bicycle commuting brothers. Getting from point A to point B is the main concern. If they can do it with a little more comfort by having a grandma sponge saddle with springs, all the better. You know, I remember once when it rained, I grabbed a bunch of plastic bags from the drawer and ran out and covered all the bicycle saddles. I knew that the guys working in the factory had no chance to get out to cover their bikes and would have to ride home with wet fannies, so I covered their saddles for them. I wasn't there when they came out, but they probably wondered what stranger had thought of them during the day and I bet they felt warm and fuzzy about it for the ride home. Maybe things seemed just a little brighter for them that afternoon.

    After work on Fridays, I would see some of them go next door to the Cantina, buy a couple of 20 ounce Cervesa, hold on to the brown bag and start the journey homeward. I would see that and say to myself, "I gotta get that guy a bike basket so he can carry more beer..."
    Mike

  10. #60
    Rather-be-riding... Mr_Finster's Avatar
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    Why hasn't anyone mentioned the Bianchi Milano with an 8 spd internal hub? Rode it last year and thought it made a nice commuter option. Kind of pricey, but a decent alternative.
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  11. #61
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Finster
    Why hasn't anyone mentioned the Bianchi Milano with an 8 spd internal hub? Rode it last year and thought it made a nice commuter option. Kind of pricey, but a decent alternative.
    Most likely because of the cost. Unless you can build one yourself or bring one back to the states after living in Germany like ILTB did, bikes that are equipped with 7-8 speed hubs tend to be expensive. Now, I bought a Breezer and I'm glad I did. It was pricey, but I have not developed much in the way of mechanical skills yet, and it has had very few problems for the mileage I've put on it since April. I plunked down a big chunk of change at once and I'm seeing the savings throughout the year. If you're living paycheck-to-paycheck, that's not going to be possible.

    The Chicago Schwinn 3-speeds are all over the place where I live. They really seem to stand the test of time, and are generally less expensive than the vintage Raleighs I see for sale.

  12. #62
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike
    You are correct, no mention at all about wattage from our imported bicycle commuting brothers. Getting from point A to point B is the main concern. If they can do it with a little more comfort by having a grandma sponge saddle with springs, all the better.
    What a concept! Who wudda thunk it?

    Again Mike, You are doing the right thing by your co-workers/biking colleagues.

  13. #63
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    I have a Schwinn World Tourist from the early 80's that my mother had when I was a child. I swapped the "sit-up-and-beg" bars for a pair of drops, mounted the shifter like a bar-con, swapped the platforms for clipless, and moved the basket from the bars to the rack. With a drivetrain I don't have to worry about, fenders & chain gaurd, and the ability to carry stuff, it is the perfect nasty weather commuter for me. I can't think of a better fit.

    I think the idea of a bike with fenders, an internally geared hub and a chain gaurd has certainly gone out of vouge. Fashion is a fickle thing. I still wear inch thick wool sweaters though.

    -Rob.

  14. #64
    Chief Chef BearsPaw's Avatar
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    I've not ridden one, but Electra's Amsterdam seems like a decent modern version of this type of bike. Steel frame and fork equipped with a generator for lights, a rack, a bell, internally geared with a coaster brake and a chain and skirt guard. They are $550, but now that the minimum wage bill just passed that's less than half a month's wages for minimum wage workers.

    I've never really looked at this type of bike because I always thought they would be really slow. This thread has piqued my interested though.

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by smurfy
    I like to take older '70s road bikes and "3-speed" them. I think they are better than the original 3-speeds since I use more modern parts and better brakes. Lighter aluminum stuff like h/bars, stems, rims, etc. (none of those awful cottered steel cranks). They are more fun to ride and they weigh alot less while retaining the charm and character of the originals.

    Here are a couple of them in my stable:
    I've always wanted to create a 700cc bike with a Sturmey Archer AW3. I had a bike with 700cc wheels and a Nexus 7 but I never really used it and sold that bike practically brand new. I never really liked the Nexus 7 because of the weight but I do like the AW3. I abused my Dahon Piccolo to death putting thousands of commuting miles and the hub was still working pefectly one the day it was sold.

    People still think the AW-3 does not have enough gears and that's simply not true. I've been able to ride 60 miles on my Dahon Piccolo with 16' inch wheels because the bike came with a 40' inch direct drive and 1st gear was a low 30' inches! I could ride that bike (slowly) all day long in 2nd gear. The trick to designing a 3 speed is to make 2nd gear (direct drive) a low 48 - 52 inches.

    The Raleigh was overgeared from the start because it came with an 18 tooth cog giving it a high direct drive of 66 inches. Since the bike was over 30 pounds, that high gear would leave you exhausted after a short ride. All they had to do was replace the cog with a 22T and direct drive would drop to 54 inches. Perfect for city riding.

    http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~hadland/elegy.htm

  16. #66
    Senior Member skyrider's Avatar
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    Somewhat related I read that bike sales in Australia (1.2 million ) outdid car sales 850,000 last year.

  17. #67
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    I've seen that Electra Amsterdam in a lot of shops. The only gearing option offered on it is a 3-speed.

    Electra also offers a 3-speed on several of their Townie models.

    Trek offers it on their new 2007 Pure Deluxe bikes at $459 list:
    http://www2.trekbikes.com/bikes/bike...d=1218600&f=28

    Schwinn offers them on some of their cruisers, like this one in the mid-$300's.
    http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/...ail.php?id=770

    Giant has one on one of their Suede models, also in the mid-$300's.
    http://www2.giant-bicycles.com/en-US...yle/600/24445/

    And the "English" three-speed still lives in the form of the Raleigh RetroGlide NX3:
    http://www.raleighusa.com/items.asp?deptid=8&itemid=328

  18. #68
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
    I've always wanted to create a 700cc bike with a Sturmey Archer AW3.
    +1! I have been thinking along the same lines, I have been looking for a 60-62cm frameset to do just that. Closest think I have in my current collection is an old Moby Nomade 25"...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
    People still think the AW-3 does not have enough gears and that's simply not true. I've been able to ride 60 miles on my Dahon Piccolo with 16' inch wheels because the bike came with a 40' inch direct drive and 1st gear was a low 30' inches! I could ride that bike (slowly) all day long in 2nd gear. The trick to designing a 3 speed is to make 2nd gear (direct drive) a low 48 - 52 inches.

    The Raleigh was overgeared from the start because it came with an 18 tooth cog giving it a high direct drive of 66 inches. Since the bike was over 30 pounds, that high gear would leave you exhausted after a short ride. All they had to do was replace the cog with a 22T and direct drive would drop to 54 inches. Perfect for city riding.
    Best kept secret for years, I still don't understand why Raleigh cranked out all those bikes with the high gears. I discovered gear inches/ratios back in the mid 70's, the first thing I did when I bought my commuter Raleigh back in '82 was swap the factory cog out for a 20t. My Superbe came with a 17t I put a 20t on there because it was what I had in the parts box, went from a 73.2" direct to a 62.2" which is much more ridable on flat ground. For "touring" rides I will put a 22t on the there and lower it even further to a 56.5" which I can spin all day long at 12.5-13.5mph.
    FWIW my fixed gear bike is currently set up with a 65" gear...I ain't as young as I used to be

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  19. #69
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
    Schwinn offers them on some of their cruisers, like this one in the mid-$300's.
    http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/...ail.php?id=770
    I should have noted that while the other bikes that I cited use a Nexus 3-spd, Schwinn is still employing Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hubs.

  20. #70
    The Other White Meat BroMax's Avatar
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    There is some enthusiasm for these. I've also heard them called "junk."

    http://www.yellowjersey.org/EASTMAN.HTML

    In England there's:

    http://oldbiketrader.co.uk/

    I was looking for my link to a shop in New England that makes new English style bikes (and if I remember correctly) used English bikes too. The link was there but now it's gone. I probably deleted it one late night.
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  21. #71
    Fossil Lurch's Avatar
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    Last Oct. I bought a Bianchi Bergamo for commuting. It is a 2005 model which resulted in a substantial discount. The total at a LBS was about $480 plus tax. It has a three-speed SRAM hub combined with a 7 speed cassette and a single 32 tooth chainwheel with a disc type chain guard. It came with full fenders and a rear rack. The chain guard could be better but it has been a great commuter on my hilly 7-mile commute to downtown. It is everything my old 3-speed Hercules was, plus it is lighter, has more flexible gearing and much better brakes. It requires more frequent chain maintenance than the Hercules, but has been a great commuter so far.

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    Would it be heresy to replace the three speed hub with an internally geared hub like a Shimano Alfine/Nexus 8-speed or a SRAM 9-speed?

  23. #73
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    I was looking up something on WallyWorld's web page and checked out their bike section. Sure enough, they have a 3-speed too, a Sturmey Archer one. For all of $109.

    http://www.walmart.com/catalog/produ...uct_id=3596787

    I wouldn't be surprised if someone could get a lot of miles out of a bike like this.

  24. #74
    The Other White Meat BroMax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlts22
    Would it be heresy to replace the three speed hub with an internally geared hub like a Shimano Alfine/Nexus 8-speed or a SRAM 9-speed?
    It's your bike. I'd do it with my Raleigh if I could obtain a 32 hole hub that fit within my 118mm drops.
    I'm going to gear the three speed down with a bigger cog.
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  25. #75
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    Don't sleep on Pashley cycles--there are available through a North Carolina distributor (they say there will be more widely available soon). http://www.pashley.co.uk/

    They're beautiful bikes but given the shipping, etc. they're expensive. I'm just now getting hip to the English 3 speed thing and scored a Raleigh Sprite ('78 model) that should be arriving shortly from ebay. I'm going to get rid of the drops and go for the traditional WWII bike look just like the Pashley--all black, upright handlebars, brooks. My one nod to modernity will be a internally geared hub. I'll post pics when it's ready (next year )
    Last edited by russian fighter; 01-14-07 at 11:53 PM.

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