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New (to me!) Humber Sports

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New (to me!) Humber Sports

Old 06-12-22, 11:11 AM
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pottyguy
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New (to me!) Humber Sports

Hi folks! Been lurking around these parts for months and found loads of useful info but finally posting myself. As a noob I can't post pictures yet or links yet unfortunately, but happy to share images in a creative way if anyone is interested.

I just came into an old Humber Sports that used to belong to my partner's father, who passed away earlier this year. I'm a daily commuter with a couple modern hybrids but until recently had zero experience with anything remotely vintage. It's been a bunch of fun getting it back into riding shape, and in the process learning a bit about the history of Raleigh (and related) 3-speeds, and trying to figure out some of the history of this particular bike. What I've learned so far is that hubs are usually a good way to date a bike, and this one indicates November 1971. I've no way of knowing if this is the original hub but I've also no indication it isn't, so this bike was probably made around then.

Some mysteries remain, though. My understanding from a ton of Googling is that Raleigh bike frames can often be dated by the location and format of the serial numbers. However, the seat lug on this bike has not one but two serial numbers stamped on it. One is prominently stamped on the side (19525AH), the other more faintly stamped across the top (3351756). Why would the same piece have been stamped twice? There's a label near the bottom bracket that says Made in Republic of Ireland. Does that make a difference?

Finally, I've also read that some Brooks B72 saddles can be dated by markings underneath. This one has only one prominent X on the right side.

Interested in what you folks think.
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Old 06-12-22, 11:29 AM
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Welcome! Pic assist:
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Old 06-12-22, 11:34 AM
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pottyguy
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Appreciate the assist and also how did you do that?? Haha.

I did upload some pics in attempting to post (and also a whole "album") but I can't see how they're attributed to my username at all.
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Old 06-12-22, 11:41 AM
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Even if you just attempt to post pics they are automatically captured by the bikeforums overlords and put in your personal Gallery. Where we can see them.
When you get to 10 posts you can post them yourself.
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Old 06-12-22, 11:44 AM
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Your user profile has a six digit number that also corresponds to your gallery.
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Old 06-12-22, 11:45 AM
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Got it! Thanks much. The full "album" i managed to add appears to be unassociated with my (or any?) username but its number is 25293608 for anyone curious enough to track it down.

Last edited by pottyguy; 06-12-22 at 11:49 AM. Reason: adding album number
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Old 06-12-22, 11:53 AM
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Welcome!

For more info you can do a general search, upper right corner, or you wade into the depths of the “For the love of English 3 speeds” thread. There are people there that have forgotten more than I’ll ever know.
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Old 06-12-22, 12:00 PM
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Your gallery: https://www.bikeforums.net/g/album/25293996.
Take some good close ups of the headbadge and any graphics on the frame and chain guard, etc. Many municipalities required registration stamps on bicycle frames in the past; could explain the extra stamping.
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Old 06-12-22, 12:04 PM
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This deserves a bigger photo

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Old 06-12-22, 12:06 PM
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Clean bike! That front chainring is AMAZING!
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Old 06-12-22, 12:10 PM
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Thanks all, I uploaded more pics to the gallery linked above by FBOATSB . In a couple of them you can see kinda clearly at least part of both serial numbers on the seat lug. And yes, I love the chain ring too!
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Old 06-12-22, 12:59 PM
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‘71 seems likely to me based on the components. They went with a very plain chainring not long after. Is that an extra-long stem? If not, it’s likely raised beyond the safe limit.
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Old 06-12-22, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
‘71 seems likely to me based on the components. They went with a very plain chainring not long after. Is that an extra-long stem? If not, it’s likely raised beyond the safe limit.
Thanks for this note. It was actually quite a task to shimmy the stem out to a comfortable height for myself; it had been set as low as possible for probably the last 50 years. I haven't pulled it out all the way to see how long it is but I guess I should before I do any more long rides! Any tips on how to do this? Even with the lug fully loosened that thing is crazy tight.
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Old 06-12-22, 02:17 PM
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If you were able to pull the stem up to that point, it will come all the way out with a bit more twisting and turning. Just some WD40 sprayed at the point where the stem comes out of the headset will help a lot. I assume you didn’t just loosen the stem bolt, but also gave it a whack? That knocks the wedge out of the bottom of the stem, making removal a far easier task!
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Old 06-12-22, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by pottyguy View Post
Thanks for this note. It was actually quite a task to shimmy the stem out to a comfortable height for myself; it had been set as low as possible for probably the last 50 years. I haven't pulled it out all the way to see how long it is but I guess I should before I do any more long rides! Any tips on how to do this? Even with the lug fully loosened that thing is crazy tight.
When you say lug, it sounds like the headset nut. Don't do that...just follow the above instructions to loosen the stem top nut, spray some lube, screw it out a half inch and then smack it back down with a mallet.
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Old 06-12-22, 06:49 PM
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Looking at the paint, decals,components, etc I'd agree the 71 date seems likely original.
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Old 06-12-22, 07:59 PM
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And it's a nice, pristine bike with proper crank to boot. Congrats.
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Old 06-12-22, 09:06 PM
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Very classic.
How does it ride?
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Old 06-13-22, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
Very classic.
How does it ride?
it rides so darn beautifully. Stopping power isn't what I'm used to from a modern bike but I'm adjusting and taking it nice and easy.

Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
Looking at the paint, decals,components, etc I'd agree the 71 date seems likely original.
Thanks! Yeah it basically had to be, I've done image searches for 1971 Humber sports and seen two other bikes with same color scheme and components. Just still mystified by the multiple serial number stamps, one of which seems to indicate an earlier vintage.

Originally Posted by clubman View Post
When you say lug, it sounds like the headset nut. Don't do that...just follow the above instructions to loosen the stem top nut, spray some lube, screw it out a half inch and then smack it back down with a mallet.
So...I have to confess here that when I responded on this I was talking about my seatpost, which I did pull out a decent amount without checking how much was left in the tube so my mind just went there. I realized my mistake right after I responded but was then locked out of posting again, or even editing my post, because of the 5 posts in 24 hours limit. So embarrassing.

I haven't touched the stem at all, but now that it's been suggested I certainly will to make sure it's safe.
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Old 06-13-22, 03:45 PM
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That is a beautiful classic 3 speed!
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Old 11-08-22, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by pottyguy View Post
. . .

Some mysteries remain, though. My understanding from a ton of Googling is that Raleigh bike frames can often be dated by the location and format of the serial numbers. However, the seat lug on this bike has not one but two serial numbers stamped on it. One is prominently stamped on the side (19525AH), the other more faintly stamped across the top (3351756). Why would the same piece have been stamped twice? There's a label near the bottom bracket that says Made in Republic of Ireland. Does that make a difference?

Finally, I've also read that some Brooks B72 saddles can be dated by markings underneath. This one has only one prominent X on the right side.
Hello pottyguy and welcome to the forum.

The two serial numbers: Over the years of collecting Raleigh serial numbers I have seen several Raleigh manufactured bicycles with two serial numbers. Most if not all of these bicycles are from the time between 1960 (when Raleigh Industries was purchased by Tube Investments) and 1973-74 when Raleigh changed most of the serial numbering to a more uniform system.

Here is another Robin Hood with the same two types of serial numbers as your (edit Humber. not Rudge) :

Robin Hood from ketchupbikes

The Brooks B72: Generally Brooks saddles have a three character code stamped into the leather. Sometimes there is a code stamped into the metal frame


Photograph is from ebay.

This B72 frame is stamped A 73.

Last edited by Hummer; 11-08-22 at 10:21 PM. Reason: fix brand name
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Old 11-08-22, 07:03 PM
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Thanks Hummer , appreciate your insight on the serial numbers!
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