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Raleigh Sports New IGH Conversion?

Old 05-16-19, 12:46 PM
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Raleigh Sports New IGH Conversion?

Has anyone converted their Raleigh Sports to a modern SA 8 speed IGH hub? I have a 70 Superbe and Im intererested in getting more steps at less than a 33% increase between gears. I suppose a 5 speed conversion would be easier (use the existing crank and chainring) but it looks like only advantage is an extra gear on the top and bottom end and the middle 3 gears are approximately the same as what I have now. Already have been using Sheldons gear calculator and have converted to a 22 tooth rear sprocket. Any insight is appreciated. Cheers.
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Old 05-16-19, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Bomarc
Has anyone converted their Raleigh Sports to a modern SA 8 speed IGH hub? I have a 70 Superbe and Im intererested in getting more steps at less than a 33% increase between gears. I suppose a 5 speed conversion would be easier (use the existing crank and chainring) but it looks like only advantage is an extra gear on the top and bottom end and the middle 3 gears are approximately the same as what I have now. Already have been using Sheldons gear calculator and have converted to a 22 tooth rear sprocket. Any insight is appreciated. Cheers.
I wrote up a reply which disappeared, so I'll try again. The 8 speed SA uses 1st gear as direct drive, so you will have to change out the Crank and chainring, as you indicate. Finding the right spindle/crank/chainring could be tough. Can you fit the 8 speed in the rear drop outs? The OLD is listed at 120. Those would be my concerns.

I have an S5 in my Sports, and it is more finicky than an AW, but one does get 5 evenly-spaced gears. The guts can also drop into an AW shell, making it an easier conversion.
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Old 05-16-19, 02:13 PM
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You can do it! See?

Went to 3 x 3 x 9 with it.
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Old 05-16-19, 02:47 PM
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I think the OLD is 116mm for my AW hub, so I think bending to 120mm should not be too stressful on the frame. I also have an S5 hub from a ‘67 Sprite which I guess is worth a try. gna - thanks for pointing out that it fits in the AW hub. Just need to find some better shift levers than OEM Sturmey Archer!

Seems like finding a suitable crank with crankring under 30 teeth and bottom bracket bearings is the problem with retrofitting an 8 speed SA IGH. The chain guard would also need to be modified to fit the smaller crankring to complete the conversion.

Maybe be just use the AW hub and get in better physical condition? In any case, I appreciate your input on my dilemma.

Last edited by Bomarc; 05-16-19 at 03:40 PM.
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Old 05-16-19, 02:54 PM
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USAZorro - Your use of the 3 speed derailleur hub is something I hadn’t considered. It’s a really intriguing idea, so I’m glad to see you got it to work. I think they put 2 speed derailleuers on AW hubs back in the 1960’s but more gears are better! Thanks for the link and providing another path to solve my problem.
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Old 05-16-19, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Bomarc
I think the OLD is 116mm for my AW hub, so I think bending to 120mm should not be too stressful on the frame. I also have an S5 hub from a 67 Sprite which I guess is worth a try. gna - thanks for pointing out that it fits in the AW hub. Just need to find some better shift levers than OEM Sturmey Archer!
I've seen two kinds of levers, some that are so-so and some that are awful. I kept my regular 3-speed trigger for the right hand side, and I use an old SA-copy trigger for the bellcrank, with #2 position tight and #3 loose. Some people put a spring in line to help it shift. It takes a little while to work out the shifts but when you get it dialed in it's fine.
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Old 05-17-19, 05:07 AM
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Thanks for the tip gna. I’ll install the S5 internals in the AW hub and control the high and low range with another trigger shifter on the left handlebar - setup like you described. I’ve had the S5 apart for cleaning and it’s clear why the spring on the cable will improve shifting. Hopefully only 2 more gears does the trick.
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Old 05-17-19, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Bomarc
Thanks for the tip gna. Ill install the S5 internals in the AW hub and control the high and low range with another trigger shifter on the left handlebar - setup like you described. Ive had the S5 apart for cleaning and its clear why the spring on the cable will improve shifting. Hopefully only 2 more gears does the trick.
I love the S5. It's better than two extra ratios. I use a regular 3 speed trigger on the right and a handlebar mounted SunTour power shifter on the left for the bell crank.With the left side bell crank disengaged, you have a medium spread 3 speed. The trigger shifts through these just as smoothly as an AW. When you engage the bell crank, you have a super wide ratio spread with a nice granny in 1st. 2nd stays the same. It is a little tricky to engage the super wide ratio mode, but you get used to it. It's not that bad and disengaging back into medium ratio mode is smooth.

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Old 05-17-19, 08:49 AM
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Thats a slick setup on the left bar BigChief. Obviously the hi/low range is either in or out so cable pull length isn't that critical - I'll probably have to try both types of shifter for the bell crank.
Just trying to match my wife's speed on the rail trail. I'm either lagging or pulling away which is a great incentive for me to get some more gears!

Sheldon's gear calculator is lots of fun. Checking out SA CS-RF3 ratios like the one Zorro used - its "the answer to the question nobody asked" but still fun to contemplate how to install 24 (or more) gears on a Raleigh Sports.
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Old 05-20-19, 08:47 AM
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Here's how my friend Troy has his S5 set up, with a spring for the bellcrank:



He used to use the stock levers, but gave up on them. I believe he uses two trigger shifters now.
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Old 05-20-19, 10:54 AM
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Count me as another one to trumpet the virtues of the S5. Now that I've got the bell crank side working (off the original white plastic lever), my Sprite has completely replaced my Tourist as my daily commuter. The only downside is that getting into under/overdrive is infinitely more fiddly than switching between the middle three gears. And, if you've got a nasty climb ahead of you, you're going to want to start shifting into first way earlier than you'd expect. Of course, give yourself plenty of time and it snicks right in, leaving you spinning the last 50 meters before the hill starts. Try to wait until the last minute and you're guaranteed to be spinning in false neutral and the gear will not click in until you've put your foot down.

Think I need to go to handlebar levers on both side. Reports I'm reading here indicate its a big improvement, especially helped by not having to worry about the lever snapping from too much pressure.

I rarely use the 5th/overdrive gear. That's got me going 20mph+ downhill, and at that point I'd just rather coast.
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Old 05-20-19, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by gna
Here's how my friend Troy has his S5 set up, with a spring for the bellcrank:



He used to use the stock levers, but gave up on them. I believe he uses two trigger shifters now.

Does that help the shifting at all? Would love to get mine to act somewhat near the efficiency of the right side.
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Old 05-20-19, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Bomarc
USAZorro - Your use of the 3 speed derailleur hub is something I hadnt considered. Its a really intriguing idea, so Im glad to see you got it to work. I think they put 2 speed derailleuers on AW hubs back in the 1960s but more gears are better! Thanks for the link and providing another path to solve my problem.
I had a three speed freewheel, powered by a Huret Allvit on my Raleigh Twenty back in 1973. It worked wonderfully once the bike shop I worked at moved south to the outskirts of Erie, while I still lived on the flat lake basin in the old part of town. Don't remember it being overly fiddly at all . . . . . . once I got the initial setup done right.
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Old 05-20-19, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by sykerocker
Does that help the shifting at all? Would love to get mine to act somewhat near the efficiency of the right side.
Mark Stonich, aka Bikesmith, recommends the spring to help "snap" it into the overdrive. He posted a pic of his setup somewhere but I couldn't find it.
I've found it's hard to get into overdrive when I'm not pedaling, but gently pedaling forward (or reverse) seems to help.
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Old 05-20-19, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by gna
Mark Stonich, aka Bikesmith, recommends the spring to help "snap" it into the overdrive. He posted a pic of his setup somewhere but I couldn't find it.
I've found it's hard to get into overdrive when I'm not pedaling, but gently pedaling forward (or reverse) seems to help.
Will give it some consideration. At present, I haven't used the left side all that much, so I don't have the feel of getting it into gear. Using the original lever probably isn't helping much, as I'm scared to death of snapping it, like I did on the right lever.
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Old 05-20-19, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by sykerocker
Does that help the shifting at all? Would love to get mine to act somewhat near the efficiency of the right side.
I have run my S5 both with and without a spring at the bellcrank, and the spring makes a dramatic improvement in the shifting. To shift I use the Sturmey trigger and a bar-end shifter. Both are on the right side of the handlebar.

If you are using a fully housed cable, you might also consider using a second Sturmey pulley and fulcrum stop to run the cable bare for most of its length.

-Carl
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Old 05-20-19, 12:52 PM
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Here's my setup with a fully-housed cable, cable stop and the spring/bell-crank combo from Mark Stonich. I'm actually usually a drill bit for the pushrod. Works great!

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Old 05-20-19, 04:48 PM
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I appreciate all those that replied with their personal experiences an recommendations for setting up the shift cables on the S5 hub.

When I went for the first ride on my rebuilt Superbe, I got a real BIG surprise when the AW popped out of gear. I understand its inherent in the AW hub - I assume its also the case on the S5? While l shift much more carefully and deliberately now, are there any shifter styles that minimize popping out of gear?
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Old 05-21-19, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Bomarc
I appreciate all those that replied with their personal experiences an recommendations for setting up the shift cables on the S5 hub.

When I went for the first ride on my rebuilt Superbe, I got a real BIG surprise when the AW popped out of gear. I understand its inherent in the AW hub - I assume its also the case on the S5? While l shift much more carefully and deliberately now, are there any shifter styles that minimize popping out of gear?
If it's popping out of gear, you need to adjust your right side cable. It's slightly off, usually about a half turn to a turn on the barrel.

I've found AW's and S5's to be incredibly reliable (on the three speed side) once you've got the adjustment dialed in.
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Old 05-21-19, 11:32 AM
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Yes, it certainly could be the shift cable adjustment - thanks sykerocker, I’ll give it another try. Seems to get all 3 gears fine but sometimes needs a 1/2 backpedal to complete an upshift or downshift.
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Old 05-24-19, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by sykerocker
If it's popping out of gear, you need to adjust your right side cable. It's slightly off, usually about a half turn to a turn on the barrel.

I've found AW's and S5's to be incredibly reliable (on the three speed side) once you've got the adjustment dialed in.
Seems to shift OK now, Sykerocker’s tip that it was cable related is what I focused on. Lubed the trigger shifter internals and noticed that the shifter cable was hanging up on the curved tip of one of the top tube cable clips.
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