Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

For the love of English 3 speeds...

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 02-15-22, 07:23 PM
  #25726  
swampyankee2 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: RI
Posts: 320

Bikes: '08 Specialized Sirrus, '92 Trek 820, '72 Raleigh Sports, 60? Fongers single speed, '72 Dawes Galaxy, '67 Robin Hood Lenton Sports

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 84 Posts
So I brought home a $25 Robin Hood donor bike and started stripping parts and comparing with my Sports. The RH is a 69 by the hub, my Sports is a 72. I'm mostly swapping chrome bits, which are pretty rusted on the Sports. In comparing the brake levers, i see a big plastic hood over the fulcrum end of the lever of the Sports. In dismantling it, I discovered the hood conceals a self-adjuster mechanism. I was going to opt for the simpler, solid steel levers of the RH but I may have to retain the self-adjusters. Do they actually work? Worth keeping as an example of Raleighs advanced technology?
swampyankee2 is offline  
Old 02-15-22, 08:53 PM
  #25727  
nlerner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 15,521
Mentioned: 394 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2875 Post(s)
Liked 3,445 Times in 1,564 Posts
Those "self-adjusting" brake levers are a good example of Raleigh's failed technological innovations--they were terrible! Of course, if they're currently working, keep 'em until they fail, but with any repeated use, they will likely fail.
nlerner is offline  
Likes For nlerner:
Old 02-16-22, 02:05 AM
  #25728  
oldspokes
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 118

Bikes: more than 20

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 57 Post(s)
Liked 15 Times in 13 Posts
How much time to most here put into a bike their fixing up, either to keep or just to flip?

Last summer I picked up a pair of 1969 Raleigh Sports bikes, the his version was rough, but the ladies version was pretty clean. Both had likely sat for at least 40 years unused in someone's garage.
The chrome overall was fair, but both rear wheels had a bad hop to them and both AW hubs had pretty much dried up and locked up from oil turned to paste.
The tires were flat but pumped up, complete with the custom cracks showing their age.
The original intent was to redo the 'too small for me' 21" men's model to flip, and to part out the ladies model to make the other one a better bike.
That went out the window when someone talked me into selling the men's model 'as-is'.
A lady friend said she liked the look of the second bike so I started going over it a few weeks ago.
I first worked on the rear wheel, I got the flatted spot straightened out, then found that most of the spokes were frozen and couldn't be adjusted. Spoke nipples were snapping off one after the other. I dug through my pile of spare parts and came up with a good set of spokes and relaced the rear wheel.
The cables were functional, so I cleaned them up and carefully lubed each one.
I had a good set of used Kenda tires, so they went on too.
The BB was as dry as the rear hub, but luckily all it needed was some cleaning and new grease. The bars, levers, and stem were decent but I took all of it apart for a good polishing job, I also stripped down and relubed the headset. I then cleaned and polished the whole frame, cleaned and lubed the OEM kickstand, cleaned and tapped out all and any dings in the fenders, and polished those as well. Last night I started to clean up the calipers, that's when I realized how much time I have in this thing. I spent three hours just taking apart both calipers, cleaning and polishing the chrome, and putting them back together. The paint is decent, (it looks good from 10 ft away, but has its issues, but its not bad for being 53 years The original pedals were junk, one was missing a bushing so i dug around in my parts boxes and found a nice pair of ball bearing Raleigh scripted block pedals from the early 70's, I then tore them apart and cleaned and relubed the bearings and adjusted each one just right. after scrubbing and polishing all four rubber blocks and polishing the chrome bits.
I'm still not done, and likely won't be for a while yet. The saddle was a padded vinyl Brooks that had long since given up and split in two places, so I dug around and found a pretty decent Wright saddle in the spare parts bin.
I notice two things about this bike, first off there's no shifter cable pulley wheel, just a solid cable housing from the shifter to the chainstay stop.
Second, the chainguard has an odd red SKF Ball bearing decal just after the Raleigh script that I've not seen before?

By the time I'm done with this, it will be 100% mechanically, but I'll end up with far more time in it than the thing will ever be worth. (Especially when I see these only selling for $50-$100 on CL these days.
Worse yet, I get told today that she no longer wants a bike like this, she wants a ten speed. She has her eyes on a minty clean Peugeot Mixte I just picked up now. (I can't wait to tell her that my plan is to make that a three speed as well).

With a 50 something rider in mind, I switched the 17t rear sprocket for a 20t, anyone know off hand how many links I need to add to the chain? Its looking like I need quite a few. .
oldspokes is offline  
Likes For oldspokes:
Old 02-16-22, 06:31 AM
  #25729  
swampyankee2 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: RI
Posts: 320

Bikes: '08 Specialized Sirrus, '92 Trek 820, '72 Raleigh Sports, 60? Fongers single speed, '72 Dawes Galaxy, '67 Robin Hood Lenton Sports

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Those "self-adjusting" brake levers are a good example of Raleigh's failed technological innovations--they were terrible! Of course, if they're currently working, keep 'em until they fail, but with any repeated use, they will likely fail.
I'm guessing this bike spent far more time entombed in the cellar than it ever did being used. The one self-adjuster I dismantled looked virtually new inside, aside from the rust and grime. I'll just clean them up and use them. It's a period-appropriate piece for the age of the bike.
swampyankee2 is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 06:40 AM
  #25730  
FBOATSB 
Senior Member
 
FBOATSB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Central Indiana
Posts: 2,031

Bikes: Old Stuff

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 809 Post(s)
Liked 312 Times in 218 Posts
Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
I'm guessing this bike spent far more time entombed in the cellar than it ever did being used. The one self-adjuster I dismantled looked virtually new inside, aside from the rust and grime. I'll just clean them up and use them. It's a period-appropriate piece for the age of the bike.
For what it's worth, if you don't like the way those brake levers work, you can just take out the little spring inside there to disconnect the self adjusting mechanism.
FBOATSB is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 07:11 AM
  #25731  
swampyankee2 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: RI
Posts: 320

Bikes: '08 Specialized Sirrus, '92 Trek 820, '72 Raleigh Sports, 60? Fongers single speed, '72 Dawes Galaxy, '67 Robin Hood Lenton Sports

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by oldspokes View Post
How much time to most here put into a bike their fixing up, either to keep or just to flip?
By the time I'm done with this, it will be 100% mechanically, but I'll end up with far more time in it than the thing will ever be worth. (Especially when I see these only selling for $50-$100 on CL these days.
Although I just paid $25 for a step-thru frame Robin Hood that needs work (got it for parts). Most all the ads for 3 speeds for sale here in New England are asking $150-300 (depending on how much of the bike was dipped in gold I guess). What they actually sell for is another story.

Last edited by swampyankee2; 02-18-22 at 06:17 AM.
swampyankee2 is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 09:03 AM
  #25732  
nlerner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 15,521
Mentioned: 394 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2875 Post(s)
Liked 3,445 Times in 1,564 Posts
Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
Although I just paid $25 for a set-thru frame Robin Hood that needs work (got it for parts). Most all the ads for 3 speeds for sale here in New England are asking $150-300 (depending on how much of the bike was dipped in gold I guess). What they actually sell for is another story.
I guess I'm lucky as I've had good luck with finding old 3-speeds in the Boston area for a lot less than that. Back in December, I picked up a fairly pristine (other than the original tires, which need to be replaced) 1970 Raleigh Sports, 23" men's frame for $60 (that was the asking price, which I gladly paid). I'll likely be one of those CL sellers trying to get $150 for it come spring!
nlerner is offline  
Likes For nlerner:
Old 02-16-22, 09:11 AM
  #25733  
SirMike1983 
On the road
 
SirMike1983's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: New England
Posts: 1,818

Bikes: Old Schwinns and old Raleighs

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 238 Post(s)
Liked 192 Times in 86 Posts
Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
I guess I'm lucky as I've had good luck with finding old 3-speeds in the Boston area for a lot less than that. Back in December, I picked up a fairly pristine (other than the original tires, which need to be replaced) 1970 Raleigh Sports, 23" men's frame for $60 (that was the asking price, which I gladly paid). I'll likely be one of those CL sellers trying to get $150 for it come spring!
Combination of a university town and the old headquarters of Raleigh USA on Boylston Street. I'd wager the northeast, and particularly the corridor starting at NYC and up through the Boston area is the best hunting ground mile-for-mile for old Raleigh three speeds in the US.
__________________
Classic American and British Roadsters, Utility Bikes, and Sporting Bikes (1935-1979):
https://bikeshedva.blogspot.com/

Last edited by SirMike1983; 02-16-22 at 09:23 AM.
SirMike1983 is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 12:05 PM
  #25734  
Salubrious
Senior Member
 
Salubrious's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: St. Paul, MN
Posts: 1,483

Bikes: Too many 3-speeds, Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 296 Post(s)
Liked 107 Times in 61 Posts
Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
So I brought home a $25 Robin Hood donor bike and started stripping parts and comparing with my Sports. The RH is a 69 by the hub, my Sports is a 72. I'm mostly swapping chrome bits, which are pretty rusted on the Sports. In comparing the brake levers, i see a big plastic hood over the fulcrum end of the lever of the Sports. In dismantling it, I discovered the hood conceals a self-adjuster mechanism. I was going to opt for the simpler, solid steel levers of the RH but I may have to retain the self-adjusters. Do they actually work? Worth keeping as an example of Raleighs advanced technology?
I get rid of those brake levers whenever I can.

That requires a bit of fiddling, since the cable and thus the fittings on the brakes are a bit different. But in the end it proves worthwhile- the 'feel' of operating the brakes is so much better! BTW you can get Fibrax replacement pads that fit the brake pad holders of the Raleigh brakes. Sometimes you have to do a bit of bending of the holders to convince the new pads to stay put. But they have otherwise the same shape as the John Bill pads and so look the part. You can find them on ebay. I recommend taking the brake cables apart if you can so as to clean rust off the cable and out of the sleeve. Then a bit of spray lithium grease thru the sleeve really doe the trick for getting that 'feel'. When you get it right is a pleasure to operate the brake.

BTW also grease the round cable end in the brake lever- if not greased it can break off of the cable which is quite disconcerting!

The little screw that holds the lever into the brake lever bracket on the handlebar should also get some attention. Grease it so the lever moves freely and then adjust it so it does not allow wiggle of the lever but doesn't restrict it either.
The brakes themselves can use a bit of grease on the main screw that holds the caliper pieces together- and on the bushing for the front half. You'll find that the brakes are very easy to set up. You're better off having them well away from the rim when at rest; this will allow you to really be able to squeeze the lever properly when braking. This has to be adjusted to the rider as everyone has different size hands.
Salubrious is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 12:58 PM
  #25735  
swampyankee2 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: RI
Posts: 320

Bikes: '08 Specialized Sirrus, '92 Trek 820, '72 Raleigh Sports, 60? Fongers single speed, '72 Dawes Galaxy, '67 Robin Hood Lenton Sports

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 84 Posts
Great advice, thanx!

Last time I fiddled with English 3 speeds was when I was a kid, and back then brakes were optional.

BTW, is there any good sources of 3 speed parts? I will probably need a cable (caught my thumb on a rusty meat hook), and grips, etc.
swampyankee2 is offline  
Old 02-16-22, 01:11 PM
  #25736  
Salubrious
Senior Member
 
Salubrious's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: St. Paul, MN
Posts: 1,483

Bikes: Too many 3-speeds, Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 296 Post(s)
Liked 107 Times in 61 Posts
Originally Posted by swampyankee2 View Post
BTW, is there any good sources of 3 speed parts? I will probably need a cable (caught my thumb on a rusty meat hook), and grips, etc.
Usually another 3-speed; also if you have any co-op style bike shops with used parts in the area I've found them to be a source. Ebay can be a source too, and when it comes to cables I've often made them up myself depending on the cable.
Salubrious is offline  
Likes For Salubrious:
Old 02-17-22, 03:37 AM
  #25737  
dirtman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: NJ/PA
Posts: 136
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 30 Posts
Originally Posted by oldspokes View Post
How much time to most here put into a bike their fixing up, either to keep or just to flip?
....................... ............................. .................................
With a 50 something rider in mind, I switched the 17t rear sprocket for a 20t, anyone know off hand how many links I need to add to the chain? Its looking like I need quite a few. .
Time wise its hard to say, I started this one back in Nov. But I've been bouncing between projects at the same time. (Last post was #25385 pm 11/13/21)

For this one I also replaced there rear hub, it came to me with an S5 but someone offered me far more than the whole bike was worth for the hub some time before so the hub was gone. I laced in a minty clean, fresh gone through same date code AW in its place. At the same time I increased the sprocket size to make up for the S5's lower first gear. I was expecting to need to add a few links but somehow the same chain worked just fine. I think the chain was likely too long before, and I fixed that by going to a 20t rear sprocket. The change also centered the wheel better in the fender.
I didn't originally intend to put this back together, I had earmarked the rims for a men's Sports I have hanging on the wall, but I had been using this bike for a while to run around the neighborhood and for some reason, even though its only a 21" frame, it fits me well, even though I'm 6ft 3in tall. It sits taller than my 23" frame 1978 Sports, and the riding position is better for easy dismount.
I also had someone who kept bugging me to keep a loaner ride in the fleet that she could fit on, so it may end up filling that spot too.
I may toss a set of rear saddle baskets on it instead of the original Prestube rack.

The bike was far worse off than I thought it was before tearing it apart.
Time wise, its hard to say, but its hard to figure time spent polishing chrome, cleaning and polishing spokes, soaking and repacking all the bearings, and straightening fenders and forks and spending time making sure the frame is 100% as well. The result is a really nice old bike but there's no way anyone would ever pay for the amount of work it took. Most average folks don't want to pay even to fix what's broken let alone pay for what it takes to erase some of the years on it.
If I had replaced the tires and cables the cost would be even higher. Since it was for me, I wasn't worrying about the few nicks in the cable housing and just put some heat shrink over it. I reused the tires figuring that even though they have some cracks starting, they'll likely be fine for a long time to come. Since it never goes far buying an expensive set of tires wasn't necessary. I put the better tire in the rear. I also lost the dry rotted cruiser saddle and old Schwinn grips. The saddle was comfortable but it was raining powdered foam padding all over the place. It's destined to be repaired and put back on a 50's balloon tire bike where it belongs.

It really cleaned up nice, with excellent chrome and decent paint. The fenders have some paint issues and the fork needed to be straightened but it turned out pretty nice.
Its nothing special but it shows what just a little cleaning, polishing, and regreasing can do for a crusty old bike.
The pedals, saddle, grips, and rear hub were changed, all else was reused.
Here's a few before and after pics.





dirtman is offline  
Likes For dirtman:
Old 02-17-22, 06:39 AM
  #25738  
markk900
Senior Member
 
markk900's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ontario
Posts: 2,326
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 351 Post(s)
Liked 290 Times in 170 Posts
dirtman That turned out great! I am surprised you didn't keep those iconic green grips though

As to the question about time spent: all of the bikes I work on I do so for the enjoyment, so I don't keep track of hours. Since I don't sell them anyway (I either give them away to people who need them or keep them for myself), the "labour rate" is irrelevant. I see it more as a zen activity that allows me to pass time doing something productive and meditative....except when the OCD kicks in and then its a different story!
markk900 is offline  
Old 02-17-22, 06:55 AM
  #25739  
swampyankee2 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: RI
Posts: 320

Bikes: '08 Specialized Sirrus, '92 Trek 820, '72 Raleigh Sports, 60? Fongers single speed, '72 Dawes Galaxy, '67 Robin Hood Lenton Sports

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by markk900 View Post
As to the question about time spent: all of the bikes I work on I do so for the enjoyment, so I don't keep track of hours. Since I don't sell them anyway (I either give them away to people who need them or keep them for myself), the "labour rate" is irrelevant. I see it more as a zen activity that allows me to pass time doing something productive and meditative....except when the OCD kicks in and then its a different story!
I feel the same. Whether it's cars or houses, I don't keep track of the time for the most part. If I did, I would probably hire someone to get it done faster, but I know I wouldn't be happy with their work. Plus, as you say, there's something zen about just fiddling with things. And of course, there's always the OCD!
swampyankee2 is offline  
Old 02-17-22, 07:19 AM
  #25740  
dirtman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: NJ/PA
Posts: 136
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 30 Posts
Originally Posted by markk900 View Post
dirtman That turned out great! I am surprised you didn't keep those iconic green grips though

As to the question about time spent: all of the bikes I work on I do so for the enjoyment, so I don't keep track of hours. Since I don't sell them anyway (I either give them away to people who need them or keep them for myself), the "labour rate" is irrelevant. I see it more as a zen activity that allows me to pass time doing something productive and meditative....except when the OCD kicks in and then its a different story!
The Schwinn grips belong on a Schwinn, which I had that needed them. The rear rack will likely end up on my '65 Robin Hood, and I converted the headlamp from two D batteries and a flashlight bulb to two four Li-Ion 18500 cells to power a single LED bulb at a nominal 7.4v. It will stay lit at just about full brightness for well over 24 hours.
The best part is that the battery style light can be taken from bike to bike and it doesn't require the drag of a generator or a Dynohub.
If i decide I don't like the bike anymore, I'd likely take the wheels and use them on a men's frame, I've got far more frames than I have Raleigh pattern wheels.

Pretty much at this point I've only got time invested in this bike. I sold the S5 hub for fare more than I had in this thing in time and I really don't think I'll miss it. I only really used the lowest gear and second gear around here. If I need to go fast, I'll hop on something with a motor.
dirtman is offline  
Likes For dirtman:
Old 02-18-22, 01:00 AM
  #25741  
oldspokes
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 118

Bikes: more than 20

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 57 Post(s)
Liked 15 Times in 13 Posts
on FB....
Both are a bit rough though

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/422195056300158/



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/230376865746019/


oldspokes is offline  
Old 02-18-22, 05:38 AM
  #25742  
dedhed
SE Wis
 
dedhed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 8,813

Bikes: '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400, 2013 Novara Randonee, 1990 Trek 970

Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2049 Post(s)
Liked 1,990 Times in 1,238 Posts
Originally Posted by dirtman View Post
I converted the headlamp from two D batteries and a flashlight bulb to two four Li-Ion 18500 cells to power a single LED bulb at a nominal 7.4v. It will stay lit at just about full brightness for well over 24 hours.
The best part is that the battery style light can be taken from bike to bike and it doesn't require the drag of a generator or a Dynohub..
I have a couple of the Elite lamps. What did you use for a bulb and how did you address recharging?
dedhed is offline  
Old 02-18-22, 08:27 PM
  #25743  
dirtman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: NJ/PA
Posts: 136
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 30 Posts
Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
I have a couple of the Elite lamps. What did you use for a bulb and how did you address recharging?
The lite came on the green ladies model Sprite, the batteries had leaked all over the inside pretty badly so i scraped out the mess and used some hydroflouric acid to clean it all out.
I then painted the inside of the can to prevent any rust.
The original bulb was blown, but I couldn't find a suitable LED bulb in a threaded base so I took the bulb apart and attached an LED marker lamp bulb to the threaded base just to see what happens.
The result was a very direct, but fairly bright beam. The LED was running at the low end of its ability to light at 3v with two D batteries. The ideal voltage would be 6-12v without changing the internal resistor in the bulb.
My next step was to just take two 18500 Li-Ion batteries, which I made to fit using two adapters made from PVC tubing and a couple aluminum slugs to adjust the length. The batteries just slide down into the tube and the tube with the battery slips into the battery holder. This gave me a steady 7.5v and better light.
I was going to make up a four battery pack and shoot for closer to 12v but figured if I do that I may as well go with an LED H4 bulb instead and have real light.

As far as recharging, I just pop the batteries out and charge them as I would any other Li Ion battery. They last a long time, so if after every ride I return the batteries to the charger, it works out fine. With the small bulb, battery life would likely be longer than one full night with the 18500 batteries. Maybe several nights of good lighting. My test using two used D batteries kept the homemade bulb lit for 3 days straight and it was still lit but flickering by the fourth night.

18500/18650, and 26650 batteries are all nominally 3.7v, with a charge limit around 4.2v or so on a smart charger.
26650 batteries would have been ideal but they're too tall to fit in place of the D batteries, but if in a holder, they could be made to work sitting sideways with two leads.

I didn't take any pics of the bulb apart because I really didn't think it would work, but it did.
The downfall to an LED bulb like this is that its directional and it doesn't take full effect of the reflector that well.
A COB circuit with multiple LEDs would work better, I was thinking about maybe a set of LED fog light bulbs but my thought there is that I may has well just use a fog light and make a proper mount for it.
I am working on putting an LED H3 bulb into a vintage headlight for an old balloon tire bike. The key with more or brighter lights is being able to run modern batteries and more voltage.

Below is a pic of the homemade LED bulb lit with two D cells in the original configuration. (I call it sufficient lighting, and its likely twice as bright as the original bulb ever was but it could be better.)



dirtman is offline  
Likes For dirtman:
Old 02-18-22, 09:53 PM
  #25744  
dedhed
SE Wis
 
dedhed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 8,813

Bikes: '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400, 2013 Novara Randonee, 1990 Trek 970

Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2049 Post(s)
Liked 1,990 Times in 1,238 Posts
Originally Posted by dirtman View Post
18500/18650, and 26650 batteries are all nominally 3.7v, with a charge limit around 4.2v or so on a smart charger.
26650 batteries would have been ideal but they're too tall to fit in place of the D batteries, but if in a holder, they could be made to work sitting sideways with two leads.
The key with more or brighter lights is being able to run modern batteries and more voltage.

Below is a pic of the homemade LED bulb lit with two D cells in the original configuration. (I call it sufficient lighting, and its likely twice as bright as the original bulb ever was but it could be better.)
Got it. Rather than a "battery pack" you modified them to insert in the D battery slots and just remove & recharge.
I did put in a screw base LED flashlight bulb in one but as you say the directionality doesn't make good use of the reflector and voltage. I basically use it for the "vintage accessory look" and a "be seen" light and mount a magicshine when riding at night where I need to actually see.
dedhed is offline  
Likes For dedhed:
Old 02-21-22, 05:32 AM
  #25745  
dirtman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: NJ/PA
Posts: 136
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 30 Posts
That's pretty much the deal here too.
If i want to see where I'm going at night, I've got a modern flashlight that uses two 26650 batteries that lights up things like it was daylight. It'll stay lit for about 6 hours before recharge.
I rarely ride at night, if I do, its not likely going to be for very long. Those days are long gone.
The Elite light conversion was more or less just to get it working, I didn't have the correct bulb and I had a box of LED bulbs for marker lights. A simply small reflector facing down on the bulb would likely make it very usable but its just as easy to put a better bulb in there, but that would mean cutting up the reflector and there would be no turning back to original. Not that those lights are anything special its still likely 50 years old or more.
I have a Lucas light that was on an old Dawes I bought years ago. it originally used a #63 bulb. The inside of the light is shot, someone tried to rig the wrong bulb into tit before for more light and failed, so anything I do is an improvement. I was thinking about modifying an LED fog light bulb to work. but they also make a bulb that will fit the original socket that's meant for vintage 6v cars.
They're cheap, but I'm not sure if they'll do any better since there's no reflector element with a flat face LED.
dirtman is offline  
Old 02-21-22, 04:11 PM
  #25746  
SirMike1983 
On the road
 
SirMike1983's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: New England
Posts: 1,818

Bikes: Old Schwinns and old Raleighs

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 238 Post(s)
Liked 192 Times in 86 Posts
I'm also a big fan of LED conversions for vintage and retro lights. I have a B&M Lumotec Classic and dynohub on one bike, and another has the Reflectalite conversion for dynohub and original lamps to LED. I also have a bunch of bikes with the Soma/Kiley retro headlight and taillight LEDs that take batteries. Unless you are set on going dead-stock with original bulbs and all, the modern LED conversions and bulbs offer a huge improvement in being able to see and being able to have cars see you on the road. This is a big deal not just if you ride at night, but also in the morning and in the evening when there's daylight, but you really want to stand out so drivers can see you.
__________________
Classic American and British Roadsters, Utility Bikes, and Sporting Bikes (1935-1979):
https://bikeshedva.blogspot.com/
SirMike1983 is offline  
Old 02-21-22, 08:12 PM
  #25747  
thumpism 
Bikes are okay, I guess.
 
thumpism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 8,134

Bikes: Waterford Paramount Touring, Giant CFM-2, Raleigh Sports 3-speeds in M23 & L23, Schwinn Cimarron oddball build, Marin Palisades Trail dropbar conversion, Nishiki Cresta GT

Mentioned: 58 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2344 Post(s)
Liked 1,431 Times in 1,018 Posts
$15 for a 23" Rudge frameset and parts in RI.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...36347837198068

thumpism is offline  
Old 02-21-22, 08:55 PM
  #25748  
clubman 
Youngman Grand
 
clubman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 8,063

Bikes: roadsters, club bikes, fixed and classic

Mentioned: 117 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2026 Post(s)
Liked 1,322 Times in 858 Posts
Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
$15 for a 23" Rudge frameset and parts in RI.


It hurts my brain trying to unravel that hot mess!
clubman is offline  
Old 02-21-22, 10:06 PM
  #25749  
nlerner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 15,521
Mentioned: 394 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2875 Post(s)
Liked 3,445 Times in 1,564 Posts
^ That’s kludgalistic!
nlerner is offline  
Old 02-21-22, 10:11 PM
  #25750  
Chuck M 
Butted Hi-Tensile
 
Chuck M's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 890

Bikes: Hi-Ten bike boomers, a Trek Domane and some projects

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 290 Post(s)
Liked 709 Times in 366 Posts
What the hell is going on with the water bottle on the seat tube?
__________________
"It is the unknown around the corner that turns my wheels." -- Heinz Stücke

Chuck M is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.