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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 01-24-23, 10:34 AM
  #26651  
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
Yeah, the asking price is steep, though if it were closer to me, I'd offer $75 or $100 and buy the thing for parts. The wheels / rear hub and shifter are pretty valuable. The rack has a little value too, but some of the other parts are rougher.

There's a segment of the hobby that is obsessed with the S5 hub and throttle shifters though. They have a cross-over interest with some of the road bike people and muscle bike people. Awhile back, I was dealing with a guy who was going through a trove of Sturmey parts for a decedent's estate. He said the first buyer in the door picked all S5 hubs and related stuff. The buyer passed over older AW parts and just wanted S5 stuff. He paid full asking price ($100 per hub, $75 per shifter) for the five speed stuff.
Those throttle shifters are terrible. The S5 is a good unit when properly set up (as it should've been from the factory), with a good strong trigger on the right and a friction puller on the left. Ebay prices for anything vintage and of good quality originally are beyond the pale these days. There's an S5 on there for like $450, which is ridiculous. These are utility bicycle hubs...
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Old 01-24-23, 11:45 AM
  #26652  
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
That's about $100 more than I'd be willing to pay for that rig!
Working S5 hubs go for a lot more than any AW, even alloy ones.

Originally Posted by Ged117 View Post
Those throttle shifters are terrible. The S5 is a good unit when properly set up (as it should've been from the factory), with a good strong trigger on the right and a friction puller on the left. Ebay prices for anything vintage and of good quality originally are beyond the pale these days. There's an S5 on there for like $450, which is ridiculous. These are utility bicycle hubs...
I have a set of those shifters, free to anyone that asks if they pay shipping. PM me.
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Old 01-24-23, 09:58 PM
  #26653  
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Originally Posted by Ged117 View Post
Those throttle shifters are terrible. The S5 is a good unit when properly set up (as it should've been from the factory), with a good strong trigger on the right and a friction puller on the left. Ebay prices for anything vintage and of good quality originally are beyond the pale these days. There's an S5 on there for like $450, which is ridiculous. These are utility bicycle hubs...
What kind of friction shifter do you look for when doing the set up? I have a 5-speed I may be converting later this season if I continue to get occasional skips with the stock shifter.
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Old 01-25-23, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
What kind of friction shifter do you look for when doing the set up? I have a 5-speed I may be converting later this season if I continue to get occasional skips with the stock shifter.
Hey Mike. I have a cheap friction thumb shifter on there now (a cheap solution to test out Sheldon's recommended set up for the S5), but I'm going to switch it out for a nicer looking / better quality alloy unit at some point, likely once I get the rebuild of the S5 finished. With the friction shifter, you just pull until the indicator gets the mechs where they need to be and the shift is clean. It works very well (this bike came to me with a trigger shifter for the left side, and it worked poorly).

PXL_20221215_131835788.MP

After the hub rebuild, I plan to replace the worn '60s right-side trigger with a new unit (below). The Triumph is an everyday commuter, so I don't mind using new kit mixed with old.
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Old 01-26-23, 09:24 AM
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I appreciate that. Going to an improved shifter set up is on the table for the Sprite this year. The only think that has held me back is the very high degree of originality on the bike. I replaced the tires and the rubber brake blocks, and the front hub cones. I replaced the original dried B72 saddle with a rider B66. I added a light set, bell, and saddle bag. Even the original, plastic shifters and the early sheet metal type bell crank were intact.

The shifting is not 100%, particularly on the bell crank side. The stops in the shifter are still good and crisp, but it will sometimes slip out of ultra high or ultra low. If it were a project bike that was parted together, it would be a no-brainer to replace it. But when they're in a kind of time capsule condition like this one was... I drag my feet on replacing stuff. But the conversion is on the table if the gear slips enough and I get sufficiently pissed off at it...
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Old 01-26-23, 12:07 PM
  #26656  
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
I appreciate that. Going to an improved shifter set up is on the table for the Sprite this year. The only think that has held me back is the very high degree of originality on the bike. I replaced the tires and the rubber brake blocks, and the front hub cones. I replaced the original dried B72 saddle with a rider B66. I added a light set, bell, and saddle bag. Even the original, plastic shifters and the early sheet metal type bell crank were intact.

The shifting is not 100%, particularly on the bell crank side. The stops in the shifter are still good and crisp, but it will sometimes slip out of ultra high or ultra low. If it were a project bike that was parted together, it would be a no-brainer to replace it. But when they're in a kind of time capsule condition like this one was... I drag my feet on replacing stuff. But the conversion is on the table if the gear slips enough and I get sufficiently pissed off at it...
My stepdad has a 53 Indian chief.

He keeps the 6 volt Lucas system on it for the same reason.

It has a hard time dealing with the headlight and the spark plugs at the same time.
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Old 01-26-23, 10:03 PM
  #26657  
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Originally Posted by Salubrious View Post
Lauterwassers turn up on occasion too...
Well, if you mount them upside down.
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Old 01-27-23, 12:24 AM
  #26658  
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Just picked up a basket case Sprite 27.
Decent paint, straight frame, but both rims have severe side wall rust/wear and the front hub has a loose flange.
Normally I only mess with the 26" models but it looks the part and I have lots of spare parts.
The rim choices I have on hand are either a set of 35mm wide Araya chrome steel rims in 27", or a set of Weinmann 519 alloy rims in 700c.
I've got zero experience though with the Weinmann 519, which is usually found on modern comfort bikes from the early 2000's or so.
It seems to be a rather stout rim with a brushed finish. The set I have even came with a set of semi slick 700-35 whitewall tires
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Old 01-27-23, 12:08 PM
  #26659  
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Originally Posted by rustymetal View Post
Just picked up a basket case Sprite 27.
Decent paint, straight frame, but both rims have severe side wall rust/wear and the front hub has a loose flange.
Normally I only mess with the 26" models but it looks the part and I have lots of spare parts.
The rim choices I have on hand are either a set of 35mm wide Araya chrome steel rims in 27", or a set of Weinmann 519 alloy rims in 700c.
I've got zero experience though with the Weinmann 519, which is usually found on modern comfort bikes from the early 2000's or so.
It seems to be a rather stout rim with a brushed finish. The set I have even came with a set of semi slick 700-35 whitewall tires
Just be careful there's at least 4mm left in the brake caliper slots to accept a 700c rim if you go that route. Weinmann Vainqueur brakes did for my Raleigh Supercourse, but I'm not sure if they used a different sidepull on the Sprite or a centerpull.
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Old 01-27-23, 12:24 PM
  #26660  
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At work this week, a component of a very old machine failed and caused some equipment damage. No person was hurt, thank Gord.

In the discussion of what caused the event it was suggested that the failed component was probably not original to the equipment, but had been replaced at some point in the decades since the machine was installed.

The best parallel to this situation I could think of was Sturmey Archer 3-speed hubs - It is my understanding that if you have a SA hub from the 40s or 50s, it is likely to keep working forever with minimal maintenance, but that a SA hub from the eighties is likely to fail under regular use - earlier models were made like a piece of farm equipment and had similar reliability, and 'improvements' to the manufacturing process were likely designed to decrease cost and/or build in some 'planned obsolescence'.
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Old 01-27-23, 02:10 PM
  #26661  
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1970 Raleigh Tourist in nice condition.






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Old 01-27-23, 04:38 PM
  #26662  
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Originally Posted by 1989Pre View Post
1970 Raleigh Tourist in nice condition.
'78-82.

-Kurt
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Old 01-27-23, 05:31 PM
  #26663  
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Shiny Sportsette for $100 in KY.

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Old 01-27-23, 06:16 PM
  #26664  
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
'78-82.

-Kurt
Ah. Thanks for the correction. I should have noted the downtube font.
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Old 01-28-23, 08:11 AM
  #26665  
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Originally Posted by 1989Pre View Post
Ah. Thanks for the correction. I should have noted the downtube font.
Just FYI - the decal set only puts it at 1973+; it's the teardrop chaincase and reflector that says 1977+, while the all-black rear fender pushes it up to 1978.

-Kurt
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Old 01-28-23, 09:20 AM
  #26666  
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Snaps to the director of this American cell phone TV commercial for putting "Einstein" (actor Paul Giamatti) on a rod-braked three-speed.



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Old 01-28-23, 11:08 AM
  #26667  
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ClydeClydeson : my understanding (and not direct experience) is that the higher level of unreliability in the later hubs was due to the machine tools used to manufacture the hubs not having been renovated, so the parts being made were sloppier. By the time SunRace bought out the factory it seems the machinery was pretty spent.

Having said that, my lower level of use has proven that all my hubs (from 40s through 80s) all work very well indeed.
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Old 01-28-23, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by markk900 View Post
My understanding (and not direct experience) is that the higher level of unreliability in the later hubs was due to the machine tools used to manufacture the hubs not having been renovated, so the parts being made were sloppier.
I was also told that the earlier production cyanide surface-hardening process was outlawed. Plus, in the 70s~90s, more and more cycle production moved from Europe to Asia, and Sturmey hubs bore the additional cost to OEMs of transportation from England, yet had to be cost-competitive with Asian-produced hubs, leaving little margin for new machine tools, more expensive alloys & processes and R&D. Once Shimano replaced the 3.3.3 with the Nexus, the writing was on the wall.
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Old 01-28-23, 01:25 PM
  #26669  
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Just FYI - the decal set only puts it at 1973+; it's the teardrop chaincase and reflector that says 1977+, while the all-black rear fender pushes it up to 1978.

-Kurt
That is all good information. I'll think twice about quoting Craigslist item titles in the future.
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Old 01-28-23, 02:17 PM
  #26670  
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Originally Posted by Unca_Sam View Post
Just be careful there's at least 4mm left in the brake caliper slots to accept a 700c rim if you go that route. Weinmann Vainqueur brakes did for my Raleigh Supercourse, but I'm not sure if they used a different sidepull on the Sprite or a centerpull.
I had a '72 Sprite here and although it had the self-adjusting levers, the calipers were the same as a 26" wheel Sports.
I swapped the calipers and levers with a pair from an older Sports and for a while ran a set of modern 700c wheels with a Nexus 7 speed hub.
There were plenty of room for proper brake pad alignment with the smaller 700C wheels.

(I didn't stick with that set up though, the Nexus 7 hub was just too heavy and really didn't show me any serious benefit. I eventually just built up a set of Araya w/o rims with an AW hub. The Nexus hub, with a 20t rear cog basically gave me two gears that were far too low to use, and three that were too tall for me 99% of the time, I found myself using it as a two speed in 3rd and 4th gear with those ratios feeling pretty much like a stock AW set up in 1st and 2nd gear. I sold the wheelset along with the rest of the set up after only a few months).
I did like the wider tires though, which were slightly wider than most 590 sized tires found on the 26" wheel models.
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Old 01-28-23, 06:08 PM
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Dos Turistas for $450 in NJ! These look really nice.

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Old 01-28-23, 06:22 PM
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It's a Huffy that took English lessons.

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Old 01-29-23, 11:59 AM
  #26673  
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Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
It's a Huffy that took English lessons.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...34393361340855

$15? I'd buy that if i were closer, even with a TCW hub.
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Old 01-30-23, 09:47 AM
  #26674  
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Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
It's a Huffy that took English lessons.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...34393361340855

Well, $15 and local to me, I couldnít resist. Contacted the seller through FBM and made arrangements to meet her at 7 pm last night at a local transit station. At around 7:15, it seems she was going to be a now show, but just then a city bus pulled up with a blue ladyís 3-speed on the front rack. Ends up that was the seller, but the Phillips she retrieved from the bus rack was her regular commuter. She needed to bike home and retrieve the Huffy. About 10 min later she was back, and the deal was done. I removed the crate to find an English-made Huffy Sportsman in decent shape and ready for a rehab.



Bonus for Kool Stop Continental brake pads though thatís quite a creative solution to securing the double-ended cable:


This saddle has more brackets attached than I can make sense of:


TCW hub dated Dec. 1961:


In case you were wondering where it was made:


Rear rack is the most corroded part and will likely get removed. Chrome fenders should clean up well. Itíll be a winter project, and in the spring Iíll give it away to a work colleague.
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Old 01-30-23, 10:23 AM
  #26675  
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I've got one of those tcw hubs. Are they pretty failure prone?
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