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Old 02-11-19, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Road Fan View Post
Anybody here have good results putting a square taper spindle into the OEM Raleigh/Brit 26 mm BB cups of a 1952 Rudge Aero Special? Are there combinations that do not work? I'm daydreaming of a vintage TA spindle with a Stronglight 49D or a vintage TA Cyclotourist crankset. I'd either use 48 tooth single chainring or a some kind of granny crankset, 48/32 or 48/28, perhaps. I would need to add a front derailleur, and some sort of chain tensioner in the rear.

Another opportunity might be an Avocet spindle with an Avocet crankarm set with a single or double (big with granny).

Known BB incompatibilities: 71 mm width versus 68 mm standard; 26 threads per inch original theading versus 24 threads per inch "modern" threading.

get clean bearings into the BB,
eliminate the future hassle of non-destructive cotter extraction,
save some weight,
target 170mm crank arm,
option to provide for a granny gear with AW or FG hub.
You've already got the Bikesmith cotter press. In the future (once you have the cotters removed initially) you will find that working with cottered cranks is easier than square taper cranks. Far less possibility of creaks! The trick to removing a stubborn cotter if its been in the cranks a few decades is to remove the nut and washer and treat it with a bit of penetrating oil, let it sit for a day and then gently heat the crank with a torch. At that point you can apply a bit more pressure with the press and the cotter will come out intact.

With a 46 tooth sprocket in front and low of a four speed like the FW or FG, low is actually good for some serious climbing even with the stock sprocket in the rear. I'm no spring chicken (63) but last fall I took my '51 Humber Sports (set up with an FW) up the Ramsey Hill here in St. Paul which is a pretty steep climb- did it without stopping. If you need a crankset with a 48 in the front I have one (cottered of course) free for cost of shipping.

If you absolutely have to change out the BB, Phil Wood makes a bottom bracket square taper with threading designed for Raleighs.
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