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Holly GoSpritely arrives (‘69-70 Raleigh Sprite Derailleur 5-speed)

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Holly GoSpritely arrives (‘69-70 Raleigh Sprite Derailleur 5-speed)

Old 05-26-24, 08:23 AM
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Holly GoSpritely arrives (‘69-70 Raleigh Sprite Derailleur 5-speed)



I didn’t expect on picking this up, but the price was right and the condition of this one made it too good to pass up.

This is one of those oddball Raleigh Sprites offered between ‘69 and 70 as a derailer 5-speed, but based on the 26x1-3/8” architecture of the Sports - prior to the Sprite evolving onto a dedicated 27”-wheel platform by ‘71-72. As such, these bikes are essentially a Sports frame with a wider rear triangle and normal 10mm dropout slots to accommodate the Huret Alivit drivetrain and Atom “I would like to kill you via chainskate” freewheel, and an equally French looking chainguard. Very odd looking duck as far as British bikes go, which is all of what makes it interesting.

With exception to a loose BB and front hub cones, there’s basically nothing else to do on it to make it perfectly ridable. It’ll get some repop Kool-Stop pads of course, and I would like to put a proper B.72 back on it. Full disclosure - I probably won’t prioritize this one given everything else in the pipeline, so this thread will probably go zombie before I have any more updates. Nevertheless, it’s too nice not to share now, so here we go:















-Kurt
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Old 05-26-24, 12:23 PM
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Very nice! You’ve seen this one before, Kurt, but my old Manse replica bike was a 5-speed Sprite:




What was most surprising is that it handled really well on the several miles of dirt path I traveled (as shown in that last pic) to go from Bedford to Concord, better than some “gravel” bikes I’ve ridden on that same segment.
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Old 05-26-24, 03:00 PM
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slightly surprised not to see an anniversary headplate at this date...

...but then am no wading avian maven


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Old 05-26-24, 03:19 PM
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Odd duck indeed. Here’s mine
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Old 05-26-24, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner
Very nice! You’ve seen this one before, Kurt, but my old Manse replica bike was a 5-speed Sprite:

What was most surprising is that it handled really well on the several miles of dirt path I traveled (as shown in that last pic) to go from Bedford to Concord, better than some “gravel” bikes I’ve ridden on that same segment.
Thanks for reminding me of that. Honestly, I didn't remember offhand (or which thread I originally saw it in), but the photos brought back the memory. Beautiful example too - I wouldn't have said no had this been a 23" men's model...

There's something special about the right EA3s.

Originally Posted by juvela
-----

slightly surprised not to see an anniversary headplate at this date...

...but then am no wading avian maven

-----
Did the anniversary headbadges ever feature on the Sports/Superbe/Sprites? I've never seen it, nor are they reflected in the always-curious catalog bikes ('69 and '70).

Originally Posted by Slowride79
Odd duck indeed. Here’s mine
Beautiful example. Slightly different Huret shifter lever?

-Kurt
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Old 05-26-24, 06:38 PM
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Nice! Is the RD cable routing original?
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Old 05-26-24, 08:18 PM
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Hello Kurt, yes shifter looks different. I believe bike to be all original.



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Old 05-27-24, 09:45 AM
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"Did the anniversary headbadges ever feature on the Sports/Superbe/Sprites? I've never seen it, nor are they reflected in the always-curious catalog bikes ('69 and '70)."

thanks for the response, a most excellent point


upon reflection, have never seen one on a model below Gran Prix

have not paid much attention to models Sports/Superbe/Sprite so always possible may have missed something

certainly have not looked at as many Wallies as you must have...

---

shift lever -

here is the Freres Huret catalogue page showing the lever on Kurt's example, 1969




Freres Huret catalogue page showing lever on SlowRideLXXIX example, 1969 -




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Old 05-27-24, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888



Did the anniversary headbadges ever feature on the Sports/Superbe/Sprites? I've never seen it, nor are they reflected in the always-curious catalog bikes ('69 and '70).


-Kurt
The only Raleigh Sprite that I know of that had the anniversary badge is the 1962 version. I do realize this early version is much closer to the Gran Sport of 62 and not like the Sprite you have from the late 60s but it existed. (Not my catalog)

Though it’s listed on this image, not every Gran Sport from this era has the badge, mine doesn’t. I’ve only seen a couple of 62 Sprites in my life but they both had it. The anniversary badge seems to have had a more limited supply in it’s early years.

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Old 05-27-24, 09:59 PM
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was 'lxii the nominal launch annum for the emblem?

it seems like it was employed randomly/intermittently up through 'lxx

be that correct or does there seem some rhyme/reason to its usage?


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Last edited by juvela; 05-27-24 at 10:02 PM. Reason: spellin'
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Old 05-27-24, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by juvela
-----

was 'lxii the nominal launch annum for the emblem?

it seems like it was employed randomly/intermittently up through 'lxx

be that correct or does there seem some rhyme/reason to its usage?


-----
Yes, as far as I can tell, 1962 with some Gran Sports and the Sprite was the launch year. Can never say for sure with Raleigh but it seems to have been used on drop bar road bike models only, which is why I think Kurt’s later Sprite doesn’t have one. For some reason it was used only intermittently from 62-67. As everyone knows it was used with much more regularity from 68-70. I’ve got a 69 Raleigh Record that has one so they did go all the way from the top of the line to the bottom. Interestingly, on one forum or another, I’ve seen member Kohl57 explain this badge as “75th” anniversary. Raleighs founding was 1887 so he’s probably correct.

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Old 05-28-24, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Reynolds
Nice! Is the RD cable routing original?
I've been thinking about it ever since I saw it, and only had time to check it right now.

The '70 catalog - the only one that shows the ladies' model - demonstrates the shifter cable dipping down just before the end of the top tube. I'll re-route it accordingly.



Originally Posted by juvela
shift lever -
here is the Freres Huret catalogue page showing the lever on Kurt's example, 1969
Freres Huret catalogue page showing lever on SlowRideLXXIX example, 1969 -
Interesting. I've never seen the plastic "stick shift" handle on a Sprite before - I bet stock ran out and Raleigh ordered whatever was the closest substitute.

-Kurt
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Old 05-28-24, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888


Interesting. I've never seen the plastic "stick shift" handle on a Sprite before - I bet stock ran out and Raleigh ordered whatever was the closest substitute.

-Kurt
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wonder if it could be something they had in the barn for use on one of the muscle bike, or other juvenile, models and when they ran short of the bare metal ones they just substituted to keep the line moving...

'69-'70 certainly predates CPSC so that would not have been an issue


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Old 05-28-24, 06:48 PM
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I rode all over Tokyo in the mid-1980's on my father's yellow Raleigh Sprite. It is still in the top of the barn, waiting for me to find a replacement rear (yellow) fender.

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Old 05-28-24, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by balindamood
I rode all.kver Tokyo in the mid-1980's on my father's yellow Raleigh Sprite. It is still in the top of the barn, waiting for me to find a replacement rear (yellow) fender.
Beware, there were two yellows used on the 27" Sprites. Never found fenders for this one, so I went full malaise-era-McDonalds:




-Kurt
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Old 05-28-24, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
Beware, there were two yellows used on the 27" Sprites.
I think you have the earlier yellow which is much nicer than the later "lemon yellow"
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Old 05-28-24, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by branko_76
I think you have the earlier yellow which is much nicer than the later "lemon yellow"
Yes, this is the mustardy color.

I have the frameset of a later Lemon Yellow Sports and I'm on the hunt for the fenders and chainguard. Been hoping to find someone in Chicago willing to part this one out: https://www.ebay.com/itm/14579109081...424.m570.l5997

-Kurt
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Old 05-28-24, 08:10 PM
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My 5-speed "Sprite", not nearly as nice or interesting as the others in this thread but it's been getting me around town since about 1999...


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Old 05-28-24, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
Beware, there were two yellows used on the 27" Sprites. Never found fenders for this one, so I went full malaise-era-McDonalds:




-Kurt
I have the older yellow.
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Old 05-28-24, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
Yes, this is the mustardy color.

I have the frameset of a later Lemon Yellow Sports and I'm on the hunt for the fenders and chainguard. Been hoping to find someone in Chicago willing to part this one out:
Funny you should mention yellow fenders and Chicago in the same post.

I found a yellow Sprite lying in the street with no back wheel so I threw it in the back of my F150. It's been in my garage for 15 years, it's the later yellow like the one in the link but it has the same chainguard as my maroon Sprite which is basically a chrome disk covering the chainwheel.

I'd be willing to part with the fenders for shipping. Will dig them out and send you some photos later this week
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Old 05-28-24, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
Yes, this is the mustardy color.

I have the frameset of a later Lemon Yellow Sports and I'm on the hunt for the fenders and chainguard. Been hoping to find someone in Chicago willing to part this one out: https://www.ebay.com/itm/14579109081...424.m570.l5997

-Kurt
My yellow Sprite is a 5-speed with 27" wheels. The one in the link looks to be 3-speed and possibly 26" wheels
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Old 05-28-24, 08:42 PM
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the images of yellow examples posted thus far are all all-yellow

have a recollection of seeing one or more yellows with a black head tube

wonder if i may be confusing it with a model of Record in what's left o' me "memory"...

here are the catalogue pages for the Sprite 27 of 1972 -




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Old 05-29-24, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by branko_76
Funny you should mention yellow fenders and Chicago in the same post.

I found a yellow Sprite lying in the street with no back wheel so I threw it in the back of my F150. It's been in my garage for 15 years, it's the later yellow like the one in the link but it has the same chainguard as my maroon Sprite which is basically a chrome disk covering the chainwheel.

I'd be willing to part with the fenders for shipping. Will dig them out and send you some photos later this week
That's very kind of you, and though the color is a match for the Sports I've dug up, the larger Sprite fenders won't fit the 26x1-3/8" frame. I intend to shove 650B's under it too, so the original fenders are a bit of a must:



Originally Posted by juvela
have a recollection of seeing one or more yellows with a black head tube

wonder if i may be confusing it with a model of Record in what's left o' me "memory"...
Definitely a Record. They had the two-tone look that one would associate with the upright-bar Canadian models and US 1978+ bikes. The Record lasted in the Lemon Yellow color longer than any other model, if I recall correctly.



I wouldn't be surprised if there may be a few Records out there masquerading as Sprites with upright-bar conversions done at the point of sale. There's always the possibility that a shop with an overstock of drop bar road bikes (I hesitate to call the Record a road bike, any more than a Schwinn Continental) might have converted one or two brand-new bikes to upright bar at a customer's request.

One can easily take a Lemon Yellow Record frame and install the fenders and handlebar off a Sprite. With exception to the lugs, the frames are virtually identical. Not that there'd be anyone to amuse with this stunt except us lot

-Kurt
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Old 05-29-24, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
That's very kind of you, and though the color is a match for the Sports I've dug up, the larger Sprite fenders won't fit the 26x1-3/8" frame. I intend to shove 650B's under it too, so the original fenders are a bit of a must:





Definitely a Record. They had the two-tone look that one would associate with the upright-bar Canadian models and US 1978+ bikes. The Record lasted in the Lemon Yellow color longer than any other model, if I recall correctly.



I wouldn't be surprised if there may be a few Records out there masquerading as Sprites with upright-bar conversions done at the point of sale. There's always the possibility that a shop with an overstock of drop bar road bikes (I hesitate to call the Record a road bike, any more than a Schwinn Continental) might have converted one or two brand-new bikes to upright bar at a customer's request.

One can easily take a Lemon Yellow Record frame and install the fenders and handlebar off a Sprite. With exception to the lugs, the frames are virtually identical. Not that there'd be anyone to amuse with this stunt except us lot

-Kurt
-----

thanks so much for the reply!

at least me "memory" not completely daft

one Sprite - Record difference to remember is that there were a great many Records produced which came with a nice Vagner forged crown

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Old 05-29-24, 05:45 AM
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Kurt, are you on the hunt for this saddle?

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