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Hills and cog size

Old 03-21-22, 12:05 PM
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swampyankee2 
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Hills and cog size

Having a tough time traversing the hills which surround my home cycling area (I live on the side of the largest hill in RI). I can do it - with some exertion - on my modern 21 speeder, but the 52-42 crankset on my Dawes is just not enough reduction to "get there". Are smaller cogs available for my Stronglight cottered crankset or do I need to move on to a cotterless set, which I'd rather not spend the money on.
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Old 03-21-22, 12:13 PM
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Back in the days when men were iron and bikes were steel.... I just don't know.
There are a lot of Stronglight guru's here.
I can only recommend the muggleBay site, and if I remember, a lot of Stronglight rings on Bikeinn.

I remember a coupla hills in Newport, a few on the way to Barrington via the New Hope Bridge,
and maybe one or two near URI....but RI is not flat, that's for sure.

BCD is your gotta-go-to number.

Last edited by bamboobike4; 03-21-22 at 12:21 PM.
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Old 03-21-22, 12:18 PM
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I don't know the answer. You have 6-spider chainrings of BCD = ? (BCD - bolt circle diameter.) TA made (And I believe still makes) 6-bolt chainrings and that many of the Stronglight and TA cranksets used the same BCD but not all.

Measure your bolt to bolt distance. (Often far easier to get accurately than finding the BB spindle center.) Post it here and quote me. I can easily tell you the BCD since I have a CAD program.
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Old 03-21-22, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by bamboobike4 View Post
Back in the days when men were iron and bikes were steel.... I just don't know.
I remember a coupla hills in Newport, a few on the way to Barrington via the New Hope Bridge,
and maybe one or two near URI....but RI is not flat, that's for sure.
I used to live in Rehoboth, MA closer to Barrington. I now live out in the western part of RI in between the highest point in RI and the Scituate Reservoir basin. Nowhere to go but down - and back up again!
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Old 03-21-22, 12:36 PM
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You could get the inner chainrings as small as 36T. Whether or not you can still find them, at a reasonable price, is another story.
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Old 03-21-22, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
I used to live in Rehoboth, MA closer to Barrington. I now live out in the western part of RI in between the highest point in RI and the Scituate Reservoir basin. Nowhere to go but down - and back up again!
Seekonk, Swansea, and "Wooster" had some killer mom/pop restaurants. I have no doubt I entered into Rehoboth unwittingly.
Papa Brillo's, Jade Tree, Salas's, and the Fri night fundraising dinners at some Catholic schools were better than a lot of restaurants.
Where else can you get crab cakes and stuffed quahogs for the Lenten meals on Friday nights, right?

Newport had the pricey good stuff.
Heading inward found the reasonable great stuff.
Knowing someone revealed the truly amazing.

I don't think everyone was a Mayflower family, but many claimed it so.
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Old 03-21-22, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by bamboobike4 View Post
Seekonk, Swansea, and "Wooster" had some killer mom/pop restaurants. I have no doubt I entered into Rehoboth unwittingly.
Papa Brillo's, Jade Tree, Salas's, and the Fri night fundraising dinners at some Catholic schools were better than a lot of restaurants.
Where else can you get crab cakes and stuffed quahogs for the Lenten meals on Friday nights, right?

Newport had the pricey good stuff.
Heading inward found the reasonable great stuff.
Knowing someone revealed the truly amazing.

I don't think everyone was a Mayflower family, but many claimed it so.
Although Providence's Federal Hill is known for it's Italian restaurants, I have always found the best food at the lesser-known places in the surrounding cities of Cranston and Johnston. RI is the only place to get stuffies (stuffed Qoahogs) and chowder. My wife has a killer recipe for stuffies. And our local fire station is selling fish and chips on Fridays during lent. Supposed to be good. I could ride my bike down to get some but it'd be cold by the time I made it back up the hill to my house (house that for segueing back on topic)

Sounds like I just need to keep an eye out on eBay for Stronglight chainrings. 79pmooney, I can work out the BC since I too work with CAD daily. I'll post the size here.
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Old 03-21-22, 01:38 PM
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Coupla CADS.
Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
79pmooney, I can work out the BC since I too work with CAD daily. I'll post the size here.
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Old 03-21-22, 01:56 PM
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If you like your Dawes - and I can understand having trouble knowing if you like it with your gearing and your hills - I think your best bet is to look for something like a TA Cyclotouriste/Pro 5 Vis crankset or a Japanese triple. You can still buy brand new chainwheels from TA, though they no longer make the crankarms. Velo-Orange sells the arms, though they're pricey. That's if you can't find something used. Since I like the Reynolds 531 bikes I've ridden, I think it's worth the investment, but it's your bike. (From what you've written elsewhere, you may be more comfortable on a smaller frame, though.)

At one point, I rode up College Hill on my Raleigh Sports; that was maybe 1958. Later, I rode from East Providence to Newport on 49-46 up front and 14-26 on the back, maybe 1984. Today I ride 45-42-28 up front and 14-28 in the back, and most of my riding is in flatland. Some is in RI and NY; hence the triple. Oh to be 30 again! Or even 50.

The best place for clam chowder ever in RI or any other place was my house, when my mom was alive and cooking.

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Old 03-21-22, 02:06 PM
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Climbing gear from that era:

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Old 03-21-22, 04:00 PM
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I think it will be cheaper to get a crankset than a chainring for that particular crankset...
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Old 03-21-22, 04:51 PM
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Those 3-arm cranks were also made by Nervar, Solida and others and were often used on cheap French bikes. I got me one of those once for a handful of euros, which enabled me to go from this ...



... to this:



Granted, the cheap 50/38 set is nowhere near as pretty as the original 52/49, but mated with a 14-28 FW it gave me a much more useful gear range.
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Old 03-21-22, 04:52 PM
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Cheapest solution is likely to be a large freewheel. You could put a WTB for a 14-32 freewheel on the C&V for sale forum and see what shows up. You will likely need a different RD though plus a bit longer chain.
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Old 03-21-22, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
Having a tough time traversing the hills which surround my home cycling area (I live on the side of the largest hill in RI). I can do it - with some exertion - on my modern 21 speeder, but the 52-42 crankset on my Dawes is just not enough reduction to "get there". Are smaller cogs available for my Stronglight cottered crankset or do I need to move on to a cotterless set, which I'd rather not spend the money on.
Those steel three-pin cranks were cheap as chips, they were everywhere, and a lot of them were 36-52. Get thee to a bike co-op (or a real bike shop) and dig in the bins.
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Old 03-21-22, 07:44 PM
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The 42T front ring is fine.

Buy an Ultra-6 freewheel in the 14-34T version, or something similar.

Get a wide range (long cage) rear derailleur. Even if intended for a mountain bike, it will get the job done.

You might need a new chain, too.

A 42T front into a 34T rear should get you there.

This is an inexpensive and easy conversion.

That freewheel also has a lot of good cruising cogs in the rear, so don't worry about that.

This is what I use when I know I'm getting into some steep, long mountain roads.
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Old 03-22-22, 01:18 AM
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Climbing gear from that era:
>snip pic of man going wrong way on a lovely downhill<



Please sir -

Where is that lovely downhill?
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Old 03-22-22, 06:22 AM
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Suntour SProCompe 5 Speed, 14-16-18-24-32.
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Old 03-22-22, 06:44 AM
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The 3-arm, 116mm BCD crank was pretty common BITD.
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Old 03-22-22, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by oneclick View Post
>snip pic of man going wrong way on a lovely downhill<

Where is that lovely downhill?


That's the Bwlch Y Groes in central Wales, UK.

"It averages 12% for nearly two miles with a long unrelenting section of 20%."
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Old 03-22-22, 06:49 AM
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Would it be possible to convert to a triple to give you some more options when climbing?
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Old 03-22-22, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
You could get the inner chainrings as small as 36T. Whether or not you can still find them, at a reasonable price, is another story.
This was going to be my point. Growing up in Chicago it was fairly flat, but many French plain steel bikes like the UO-8s came with cottered steel 52/36, with 14/28 5sp freewheels. Perhaps some smart product manager in France decided "there's wind in the Midwest, all those normal people riding our bikes will need lower gearing than 45/28." I think the design of those bikes was pretty smart!

I don't remember the chainring bolt layouts, however, for the French cranks or the British ones. Brits like Raleigh and Dawes were more commonly 52/45 and such, but with a lot of variation among models, years, and ... the phases of the moon?

As long as you get a replacement chainring with plain teeth and the screw holes in the correct place, the choice of steel or aluminum should not matter very much, so if perhaps Peter White or another shop has the correct ring you have some flexibility.

Caveats: 1. With a smaller small ring and no other changes, you might need a few more links in the chain. 2. With a smaller small ring and no changes, you might need a front derailleur with a deeper cage, in case the chain drags on the tail. 3. If your rear derailleur is near it's wrap-up limits, you might need one with a longer cage.

Something, maybe the craze for valid Eroica bikes, is driving up the market for vintage derailleurs which can handle wide gearing. I'm amazed at the prices for formerly disrespected items such as Huret Allvits, Simplex dual-pivot rear derailleurs, and Campagnolo Valentino and Tourismo, especially the longer-cage versions (the Valentinos do not have the range to be valid replacements for your original). If your original derailleurs are not at their limits, it's probably smart to limit your gearing upgrade to what the existing derailleur can handle without being stressed. The issue with stress is that these are nearly 50 year old parts and they were not the highest-end availalble in the day. If one breaks it can be hard to replace for less than the value of the bike.
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Old 03-22-22, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
The 3-arm, 116mm BCD crank was pretty common BITD.
I measured across hole centers and it looks like I have the common 116 BCD, 3 arm crankset. It would be nice to simply swap the 52-42 for a 52-38 or something. I just upgraded the derailleurs from the worn out Simplex to a nice set of Huret Challengers and I'd hate to spend yet more money on different derailleurs..
Although as discussed elsewhere, the Dawes frame will do, size-wise, It was a cheap-bike first attempt at fixing up a vintage 10-speed and not in the best shape cosmetically so I'd hate to put good money after bad. I was thinking I could keep it for flatter terrain and buy a slightly more modern, yet vintage bike with cotterless crankset that is more readily upgraded.
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Old 03-22-22, 07:44 AM
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Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
I measured across hole centers and it looks like I have the common 116 BCD, 3 arm crankset. It would be nice to simply swap the 52-42 for a 52-38 or something. I just upgraded the derailleurs from the worn out Simplex to a nice set of Huret Challengers and I'd hate to spend yet more money on different derailleurs..
Although as discussed elsewhere, the Dawes frame will do, size-wise, It was a cheap-bike first attempt at fixing up a vintage 10-speed and not in the best shape cosmetically so I'd hate to put good money after bad. I was thinking I could keep it for flatter terrain and buy a slightly more modern, yet vintage bike with cotterless crankset that is more readily upgraded.
This is the info you need on the challenger; it should work with your proposed gearing.

https://velobase.com/ViewComponent.a...B8E8D&Enum=108
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Old 03-22-22, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
I measured across hole centers and it looks like I have the common 116 BCD, 3 arm crankset. It would be nice to simply swap the 52-42 for a 52-38 or something. I just upgraded the derailleurs from the worn out Simplex to a nice set of Huret Challengers and I'd hate to spend yet more money on different derailleurs..
Although as discussed elsewhere, the Dawes frame will do, size-wise, It was a cheap-bike first attempt at fixing up a vintage 10-speed and not in the best shape cosmetically so I'd hate to put good money after bad. I was thinking I could keep it for flatter terrain and buy a slightly more modern, yet vintage bike with cotterless crankset that is more readily upgraded.
Don't underestimate the Galaxy. I believe it was actually meant to be upgraded. Buying a good frame with entry level parts was common practice BITD. It would get you started on a budget and offer a nice upgrade path as funds became available.

AFIK the "Super Galaxy" was the same frame, but with high end parts.
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Old 03-22-22, 09:58 AM
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I donít know the specifics on that frame, but if it can accommodate a square-taper bottom bracket, your local community bike shop may have options for cranksets that will either just work or will at least have BCDs that allow trying different chainrings (maybe also available at the community bike shop). I went down a similar route for my vintage road bike that had a three piece crank and very tall gearing. I ultimately put a Sugino triple on it that I think was made for replacing stamped steel chainrings on older mountain bikes and hybrids. It did the trick for me.
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