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"Maxwell Silver Line" garbage or gold?

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"Maxwell Silver Line" garbage or gold?

Old 10-12-19, 07:03 PM
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Electricquad
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"Maxwell Silver Line" garbage or gold?

Apologies if this is in the wrong thread, I'm new. I came across a "Maxwell Silver Line" at the local thrift store here in Oklahoma for $20 today. It looks to be a British or Dutch immigrant probably mid 80s (decals rather than painted lettering), but I have no clue what this bike is beyond a hub brake planetary gear 3 speed. Inspecting it, the components, build, and finish look high quality (looks black until the light is on it then it is a beautiful royal purple).

A separate question is what do you call the valve on this (see pics)? They resemble presta, but they are the width of schraeder and I have no idea how they inflate.

Mostly I got it because it is in great shape and I have never worked on hub brakes and planetary drives

P.S. I'm new so apparently can't post pics yet?
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Old 10-12-19, 07:28 PM
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Ok, so mid 80s was off, the hub marking would suggest April 1996 is the approximate age.
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Old 10-12-19, 08:35 PM
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Ok so those are woods/Dunlop valves... Interesting....
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Old 10-12-19, 11:43 PM
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Get 10 posts and show us some pictures! Everyone but me might be experts on these bit as sort of a newbie compared to some of the folks here I am wanting to see what it looks like. I love 3 speeds even if 96 isn't really that old.
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Old 10-13-19, 09:07 AM
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Pic assist

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Old 10-13-19, 09:16 AM
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Why thank you! That would be the bike. I guess the rest of the photos I tried to upload are in the same place!
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Old 10-13-19, 10:09 AM
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So the Dunlop valves were a little stiff. I had to out a lot of pump pressure on them before they would allow air to pass. Once the accepted the air they inflated and held pressure no problem. I still want details on who Maxwell was.
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Old 10-13-19, 10:11 AM
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Link to OP's photo album.; https://www.bikeforums.net/g/picture/15487757

Yes, it does appear to be a relatively modern, retro-style bicycle based on the steel cotterless crankset, ATB style brake levers and Nylon pedals. It's nice to see a three speed with what appears to be aluminum rims. Based on the valves, I assume it's from one of the developing countries, possibly in Asia. There was also a Maxwell bicycle brand in Mexico but I would have assumed Schrader valves for that origin. While it's a good buy, I wouldn't call it gold.
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Old 10-13-19, 11:20 AM
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No idea, but now I have a Beatles song stuck in my head.
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Old 10-13-19, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by CO_Hoya View Post
It looks like a nice cruising around town bike and is nice shape. I think you did good!
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Old 10-14-19, 06:10 AM
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@T-Mar I am pretty sure the origin is somewhere in Europe. The bike components amount to an ode to the EU. Selle Royal Italy seat, Sturmey Archer hubs, sugino cranks, Axa Holland frame lock, Soubitez Dynamo, Seloa Slovenia pump, Rodin 'made in Europe' wheels. The frame was the only thing I couldn't find a country of origin for. The painted highlighting around the joints on the top tube are reminiscent of my Motobecane Grand jubilee. For the 1990s it just seems like a lot of EU components for that bike not to have been made in the EU somewhere.
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Old 10-14-19, 06:20 AM
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Some suggested graphics inspired by the boys from Liverpool.

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Old 10-14-19, 06:29 AM
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It reminds me of our fair city's bait-and-switch bus/subway hybrid, infamously stranding travelers in rush hour traffic on the way to Logan airport since 2004! You get on at south station thinking it's a subway. Then it goes aboveground and gets stuck in traffic and you miss your flight. Most days between 3pm and 8pm, the bike would be faster!

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Old 10-14-19, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Electricquad View Post
@T-Mar I am pretty sure the origin is somewhere in Europe. The bike components amount to an ode to the EU. Selle Royal Italy seat, Sturmey Archer hubs, sugino cranks, Axa Holland frame lock, Soubitez Dynamo, Seloa Slovenia pump, Rodin 'made in Europe' wheels. The frame was the only thing I couldn't find a country of origin for. The painted highlighting around the joints on the top tube are reminiscent of my Motobecane Grand jubilee. For the 1990s it just seems like a lot of EU components for that bike not to have been made in the EU somewhere.
Given the additional component information, you're probably correct. My Asian suggestion was based solely on the S/A hubs and the Woods valves. While the latter still has some popularity in some areas of Europe, they are most prominent in developing Asian countries.
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Old 10-14-19, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
My Asian suggestion was based solely on the S/A hubs and the Woods valves. While the latter still has some popularity in some areas of Europe, they are most prominent in developing Asian countries.
No biggie. The S/A hubs are stamped "4 96 Made in England" or April 1996. S/A was sold to Sun Race in 2000 (according to some sites the quality improved significantly after this), so I assume it became more popular in Asia post 2000?

However, your main point: 'it isn't garbage but it isn't gold' is still accurate. But, I still want to know its origin! I feel it is fairly uncommon to come up with a bike brand that no one recognizes.

Also, I should note, it is "Maxwell (R)", which suggests to me that Maxwell is the registered trademark name of a different manufacturer.

Last edited by Electricquad; 10-14-19 at 10:39 AM.
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Old 10-14-19, 08:17 PM
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Another tidbit, there serial number is numeric, 6 digits (1515xx ) and is located on the left side of the seat tube about 3-4 inches from the top. None of the number pairs are consistent with likely year (1996).
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Old 10-15-19, 04:37 AM
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There is a Maxwell Fietsen company in the Nethlands ( https://www.maxwellfietsen.com/ ) that could be related. While their current product line is solely e-bicycles, that could have have been a strategic, marketing move. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any company history on their site.

Also, from a Dutch Wipedia entry:

"Maxwell is a historic Dutch brand of bicycles, transport tricycles and motorcycles.

A. Druyf & Co., later Maxwell Rijwielfabriek A. Druyf & Co., Amsterdam.

This Dutch brand made transport tricycles with Gillet blocks in the 1930s and also sold complete motorcycles. These were probably Gillet products that were provided with other transfers. From 1954 to the early 1960s, mopeds were made with Austrian HMW blocks.

The bicycle factory was located at Oudezijds Voorburgwal 131"
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Old 10-15-19, 06:29 AM
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@T-Mar you win the prize! Looking through picture results turned up several Maxwell Fietsen bikes that look like this one. This does move it up to gold for me. My wife and I had been desiring a Dutch cargo bike. While not cargo, it is by a Dutch cargo bike company... and was only $20. Tragically, it might by be 1.5 cm too big for her.
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Old 10-15-19, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
There is a Maxwell Fietsen company in the Nethlands ( https://www.maxwellfietsen.com/ ) that could be related. While their current product line is solely e-bicycles, that could have have been a strategic, marketing move. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any company history on their site.

Also, from a Dutch Wipedia entry:

"Maxwell is a historic Dutch brand of bicycles, transport tricycles and motorcycles.

A. Druyf & Co., later Maxwell Rijwielfabriek A. Druyf & Co., Amsterdam.

This Dutch brand made transport tricycles with Gillet blocks in the 1930s and also sold complete motorcycles. These were probably Gillet products that were provided with other transfers. From 1954 to the early 1960s, mopeds were made with Austrian HMW blocks.

The bicycle factory was located at Oudezijds Voorburgwal 131"
Correct. For future reference, prominent clues that this bike is Dutch are:
  • the white paint on the rear fender (minimum of 30cms) was mandatory until 1995, a few years after the rear reflector had become a legal requirement
  • the rectangular rear reflector, introduced in 1979
  • the sidewall reflection on the tires. Side reflection was a requirement from 1987 onward
  • the Dunlop valves, standard on almost all Dutch bikes
  • the ring lock - the standard lock for Dutch bikes
  • the coat protectors. Dutch ride their bikes in the rain, wearing their rain coats ...
The aluminum rims and fenders are a bit out of character. Most bikes like these had painted steel fenders and indestructible stainless steel rims (Van Schothorst!)
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Old 10-15-19, 10:02 AM
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Thanks @non-fixie, the fenders are steel and fully painted. When I first looked at it in the store, the coat protectors, ring lock and fully enclosed chain guard made me think it might be a Dutch bike. The Sturmey-Archer hubs and drive are what led me astray. Now I wish could talk to the person who went to the trouble of importing it to the middle of Oklahoma. Obviously it was someone who really wanted a bike that was from the Netherlands, not just a Schwinn gussied up to look like a Dutch bike. Sadly it really doesn't look like they ever rode it once they got it here.
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Old 10-15-19, 11:05 AM
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My guess is it belonged to a Dutch person, who moved to the States and brought it along as a matter of course, before realizing that cycling in the US is very different from Holland.

Unless you live in Portland, owning a bike like this seems pretty pointless to me. But then again, I'm Dutch and these bikes are common as muck around here, so YMMV.
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Old 10-15-19, 02:05 PM
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