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Sunbeam W3 Wayfarer No S48571 1949/50

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Sunbeam W3 Wayfarer No S48571 1949/50

Old 11-22-19, 04:10 AM
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Sunbeam W3 Wayfarer No S48571 1949/50

I recently obtained this Sunbeam Bicycle at a bike jumble. This is my second Sunbeam I obtained a Wartime Production one a while back which needs restoration (elsewhere on Bike Forums) but this one is rideable so will not be restored but I will strip and rebuild it replacing any worn bearings (brake blocks too!) so it is in really good riding condition. It is a BSA made Sunbeam and has a BSA 3 Speed Hub but someone has replaced the Trigger Shifter with a Raleigh one at some point. I have sourced a NOS BSA Trigger Shifter to replace the Raleigh. The brakes are the Sunbeam pattern Centre-pull type unique to these bikes and I particularly like the Flat North Road Handlebars. The bike is virtually completely original apart from the Trigger Shifter, Handlebar Grips, and perhaps the pedals (not sure about these) . It has a Lucas Cyclometer with 2,695 miles on it. The front forks are partially chromed so that apart from the BSA 3 Speed it is almost identical to the Wayfarer in the AMC Sunbeam 1939 Brochure, so it seems the only change made by BSA initially was to use their own 3 Speed Hub. By the time of the 1951 Catalogue the Wayfarer was modified to have Straight Handlebars and the saddle changed from Brooks to the Terry Tri Spring Saddle but otherwise still the same bicycle.

You can see other post regarding this rebuild at: Sunbeam W3 Wayfarer No S48571 1949/50 Part 2 & Sunbeam W3 Wayfarer No S48571 1949/50 Part 3



General view of bike, drive side.


General view of bike, non drive side.


Front Centre-pull Brake.


Front Forks with Lucas Cyclometer.


Flat North Road Handlebars.


Iconic Sunbeam 'Little Oil Bath" Chaincase. Unique to Sunbeams, the Chain Case forms the drive side chain stay, there is no chain stay tube extending to the rear drop out, thus the chain case is a structural part of the frame.


Original Brake Levers.


Original Terry Extra Coil Saddle. (see 1951 catalogue extract below).


Sunbeam 1939 Catalogue Reference. From VCC Library.


Sunbeam 1951 Catalogue Reference. From VCC Library.
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Last edited by PeterLYoung; 01-29-20 at 06:56 AM. Reason: Add Photographs
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Old 11-22-19, 12:05 PM
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That's a heckuva bike for 9 pounds seven and six! Guess that was a lot of money back then.
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Old 11-23-19, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Lascauxcaveman
That's a heckuva bike for 9 pounds seven and six! Guess that was a lot of money back then.
Sunbeams were one of the top makes, They were originally extremely expensive but they had to reduce their prices to become competitive prices went a lot higher after the war with increased taxation. That price of 9-7-6d was getting on for one and a half weeks wages in 1939 for the average person where average wages were around 7.00/week. You could buy a brand new Austin Seven Ruby Car for 137.00.
So in fact the bike was quite expensive for what was a utilitarian item, most people cycled all the time as the only practical way to commute to and from the workplace.
For example a BSA Roadster bicycle started at 5-10Shillings whereas their top Racing Opperman was 12-12Shillings.
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Old 11-23-19, 08:31 AM
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This is a very cool bike and I like the old ads as well. I'm looking forward to reading the ride report on this one.
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Old 11-23-19, 09:59 PM
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Very cool ride. Hope it sees many more miles
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Old 11-25-19, 07:14 AM
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1904 Catalog



In 1902 this Sunbeam would have cost a skilled worker nearly 6 months pay.
The old lady who inherited from her Mum rode it for 80 years. I rode it home a year ago.
Attached Files
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Old 12-04-19, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Johno59


In 1902 this Sunbeam would have cost a skilled worker nearly 6 months pay.
The old lady who inherited from her Mum rode it for 80 years. I rode it home a year ago.
I guess someone removed the Oil Bath Chain Case to install the Derailleur, two speed epicyclic on Chain Wheel!!
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Old 12-04-19, 11:06 AM
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That ladies Sunbeam looks like it has a 3 speed hub and a cyclo derailleur. It also looks like the missing chaincase was replaced with a Raleigh sports chainguard.

That Sunbeam Wayfarer is nice. Thanks for posting.

Last edited by Velo Mule; 12-04-19 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 12-04-19, 11:24 AM
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Peter Gunn from Gunn and Co in the UK recently had a 6 speed Sunbeam hub repair on his instagram. Pretty cool stuff.




Edit: cool, BF is doing Insta image previews now!
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Old 12-04-19, 01:15 PM
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Fascinating company, if I remember correctly they built motorcycles, firearms, and I want to say typewriters? VERY cool bike! And the 23 size too! Im jealous!
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Old 12-06-19, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Chr0m0ly
Fascinating company, if I remember correctly they built motorcycles, firearms, and I want to say typewriters? VERY cool bike! And the 23 size too! Im jealous!
Are you talking about BSA?

AFAIK, Sunbeam did bicycles and cars. Wouldn't be the first time I've been wrong though.
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Old 12-07-19, 04:34 AM
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1903 epicyclic 2 speed

Originally Posted by Velo Mule
That ladies Sunbeam looks like it has a 3 speed hub and a cyclo derailleur. It also looks like the missing chaincase was replaced with a Raleigh sports chainguard.

That Sunbeam Wayfarer is nice. Thanks for posting.
Originally Posted by PeterLYoung
I guess someone removed the Oil Bath Chain Case to install the Derailleur, two speed epicyclic on Chain Wheel!!
This one did not have an oil bath. On all Sunbeam oil- bathed bikes the casing enclosing the drivetrain was part of the drive side chainstay, it would be impossible to remove it without major frame building skills.
I fitted the 4 speed SA and the Resilion derailleur. I believe a 3 speed IGH hub was an option in 1906 to go with the epicyclic 2 speed.

Last edited by Johno59; 12-07-19 at 04:37 AM.
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Old 12-07-19, 04:44 AM
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Sunbeam epicyclic ball bearings

Originally Posted by tricky
Peter Gunn from Gunn and Co in the UK recently had a 6 speed Sunbeam hub repair on his instagram. Pretty cool stuff.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B5kkhsql1G4/



Edit: cool, BF is doing Insta image previews now!

110 ball bearings this side

60 ball bearings the other side.
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Old 12-07-19, 06:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Johno59
This one did not have an oil bath. On all Sunbeam oil- bathed bikes the casing enclosing the drivetrain was part of the drive side chainstay, it would be impossible to remove it without major frame building skills.
I fitted the 4 speed SA and the Resilion derailleur. I believe a 3 speed IGH hub was an option in 1906 to go with the epicyclic 2 speed.
Yes, The Little Oil Bath Chain Case formed part of the frame replacing the drive side Chain Stay but the photo below shows a Sunbeam with a removable Chain Case and some models in the early catalogues look as though the drive side chain stay is present inside the chain case. Of course many Sunbeams did not have a Chain Case. I have one with Chain Case and one without.

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Old 12-07-19, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Johno59

110 ball bearings this side

60 ball bearings the other side.
Beautifully engineered!!!
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Old 12-07-19, 09:02 AM
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116 years on the road

Originally Posted by PeterLYoung
Beautifully engineered!!!
The extraordinary thing was neither the bearing, bearing racers, gears or selectors showed iany sign of wear.The oiler holes were more than enough to keep all those parts good for more than a century of riding.
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Old 12-07-19, 09:20 AM
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1948 Sunbeam


Same year as the Wayfarer but with Resilion cantilever brake's
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Old 01-12-20, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Chr0m0ly
Fascinating company, if I remember correctly they built motorcycles, firearms, and I want to say typewriters? VERY cool bike! And the 23” size too! I’m jealous!
Sunbeam was name given to the companies set up by John Marston. There was the Sunbeam Bicycle & Motor Cycle business, see a history here:- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunbeam_Cycles, and separately the Sunbeam Car Company which also made Buses and Trolley Buses. During WW1 they made Aero Engines for the war effort. See a history here:- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunbeam_Motor_Car_Company.
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