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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 08-04-16, 01:13 PM
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Raleigh sports with Hercules Birmingham hub?

Hi all,
I'm a newbie here and just beginning my old bike hobby.
Just picked this up yesterday. Starting to dust it off, I looked at the hub to attempt to determine age/date.
What I found was a bit of a surprise.
Have you seen this on a Raleigh Sports?
Unable to upload pic of bicycle frame, will try again later.
Thanks for any response.
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Old 08-04-16, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by tgwinn
Hi all,
I'm a newbie here and just beginning my old bike hobby.
Just picked this up yesterday. Starting to dust it off, I looked at the hub to attempt to determine age/date.
What I found was a bit of a surprise.
Have you seen this on a Raleigh Sports?
Unable to upload pic of bicycle frame, will try again later.
Thanks for any response.
Maybe a previous owner swapped wheels from a Herc?
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Old 08-04-16, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by tgwinn
Hi all,
I'm a newbie here and just beginning my old bike hobby.
Just picked this up yesterday. Starting to dust it off, I looked at the hub to attempt to determine age/date.
What I found was a bit of a surprise.
Have you seen this on a Raleigh Sports?
Unable to upload pic of bicycle frame, will try again later.
Thanks for any response.
Hub date is 1955.
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Old 08-04-16, 02:09 PM
  #11279  
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Originally Posted by BigChief
Congratulations!!! I love this bike. Looks like you will have to deal with the bottom bracket though. If reversing the spindle doesn't work, I see all sorts of NOS spindles on eBay. I think, with patience, you could find one that fits with a longer drive side. I'd be interested to see the measurements of the existing spindle when you have it apart. I have a couple spindles around here that don't fit my Raleigh Sports or Roadsters. Ya never know.
Thanks BC!
I think reversing the spindle is the way to go. There's excess clearance on the ND side.
I just need to straighten the crank....
I think you posted about that a while back.
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Old 08-04-16, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by arex
I like those old brake levers.
It's an interesting bike.
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Old 08-04-16, 05:58 PM
  #11281  
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Originally Posted by DQRider
I had no idea Schwinn made such beautiful 3-speeds. I see they did not use lugged construction. Is that fillet brazed? Or some other process?
Originally Posted by SquidPuppet
"Electroforged". It was Schwinn's attempt to imitate (successfully?) a filet brazed join. I call it a Faux Filet.

The first paragraph here explains the process in basic terms.

Chicago Schwinns

Then this article on the Varsity (same construction) goes into detail and includes picture and drawings.

Inside the Varsity

That head tube join, the flat forged forks, and the seat stay-seat-seat-tube join are my favorite quirky features on older Schwinns.



Correct-- this 1954 Traveler is electro forge welded. The late 30s to late 40s bikes (New World, Superior, Continental) are fillet brazed.
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Old 08-04-16, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983
Correct-- this 1954 Traveler is electro forge welded. The late 30s to late 40s bikes (New World, Superior, Continental) are fillet brazed.
Correction. The Continental is welded, not brazed.

And the filet brazed lineup continued all the way to 1978. Most people didn't know they were brazed because they were painted the same colors as the low level bikes.


For 41 years, from 1938 to 1978, the Schwinn Bicycle Company of Chicago offered a unique but little-known line of specially constructed lightweight bicycles: The fillet-brazed chrome-molybdenum models, which were tucked into Schwinn's model lineup between the lugged Paramount and flash-welded models like the Varsity and Continental.
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Old 08-04-16, 07:58 PM
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That Schwinn stuff is a whole new line of research for me. I think I'm going to save it until winter. Eventually I want to build one, but I want it to be the right one. Those lightweight chrome-moly models sound interesting. What were the model names for those, and how would I recognize one? For instance, is the Voyageur 11.8 one of them? (edit: Wait, no, dummy. That one is lugged... )

Here's a little eye candy from my ride tonight:





I've changed his name from "The Roadster" to "His Majesty, King of Bikes", or simply "The King". Why? Look at that regal carriage! He really stands out in the midst of my humble stable.

Last edited by DQRider; 08-05-16 at 03:09 PM. Reason: added photo
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Old 08-04-16, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by gster
Thanks BC!
I think reversing the spindle is the way to go. There's excess clearance on the ND side.
I just need to straighten the crank....
I think you posted about that a while back.
Yes, but I've never had to bend an arm in. It's always been bent in and I've bent them back out with a pipe right on the bike. I'm thinking this drive side crank would best be worked off the bike. Maybe clamped at the center of the crank onto a work bench. Something like a small socket wedged in between the chainring and arm at the point you want to bend. Then you could hit the top of the arm with a rubber mallet. Or perhaps the arm could be chucked into a bench vise and the bend could be worked with a husky steel bar through the crank hole. Just random thoughts, never done it. The good thing is that these steel crank arms aren't very hard to bend.
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Old 08-04-16, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
Yes, but I've never had to bend an arm in. It's always been bent in and I've bent them back out with a pipe right on the bike. I'm thinking this drive side crank would best be worked off the bike. Maybe clamped at the center of the crank onto a work bench. Something like a small socket wedged in between the chainring and arm at the point you want to bend. Then you could hit the top of the arm with a rubber mallet. Or perhaps the arm could be chucked into a bench vise and the bend could be worked with a husky steel bar through the crank hole. Just random thoughts, never done it. The good thing is that these steel crank arms aren't very hard to bend.
turns out both cranks are a bit funny so I may swap out the whole BB if I can.
Good reverse engineering on the fix.
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Old 08-05-16, 04:22 AM
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That may be the best idea. Especially since the DS arm is cut away. If you end up having a problem with the spindle length, I have a parts bike in my barn that appears to be a 50s Birmingham bike of some sort. I have no need for the BB spindle. If you run into trouble, let me know. I'll take it apart and measure.
old bike001.jpg
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Old 08-05-16, 04:59 AM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet
"Electroforged". It was Schwinn's attempt to imitate (successfully?) a filet brazed join. I call it a Faux Filet.

The first paragraph here explains the process in basic terms.

Chicago Schwinns

Then this article on the Varsity (same construction) goes into detail and includes picture and drawings.

Inside the Varsity

That head tube join, the flat forged forks, and the seat stay-seat-seat-tube join are my favorite quirky features on older Schwinns.



I meant to comment on this bike, but it wanders a bit off the reservation in here. What a beautiful machine! Who knew beige could be so classy? It makes me rethink my plan of repainting another beige bike that just landed in my lap.

The other thing that strikes me about this Schwinn is that they did the "triple triangle" seat stay thing long before GT started trumpeting that in their ads. I didn't know that either. That's what I love about this hobby: The deeper you go, the deeper it gets...
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Old 08-05-16, 06:58 AM
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Originally Posted by DQRider
Here's a little eye candy from my ride tonight:



I've changed his name from "The Roadster" to "His Majesty, King of Bikes", or simply "The King". Why? Look at that regal carriage!

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Old 08-05-16, 07:19 AM
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^^^ Okay, that one made my day. Thank you, thankyouverymuch!
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Old 08-05-16, 07:55 AM
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Originally Posted by DQRider
That Schwinn stuff is a whole new line of research for me. I think I'm going to save it until winter. Eventually I want to build one, but I want it to be the right one. Those lightweight chrome-moly models sound interesting. What were the model names for those, and how would I recognize one? For instance, is the Voyageur 11.8 one of them? (edit: Wait, no, dummy. That one is lugged... )
This article will answer all those questions and much, much more.

Fillet-Brazed Schwinn Bicycles 1938-1978

The most desirable fillet-brazed models in the 1962-78 series are probably be the 1971-1975 Sports Tourer and 1976-1978 Superior. Their frames are CrMo throughout with forged rear dropouts and a threaded bottom bracket for cotterless cranksets, and they have a chrome plated CrMo fork.
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Old 08-05-16, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by DQRider
That Schwinn stuff is a whole new line of research for me. I think I'm going to save it until winter. Eventually I want to build one, but I want it to be the right one. Those lightweight chrome-moly models sound interesting. What were the model names for those, and how would I recognize one? For instance, is the Voyageur 11.8 one of them? (edit: Wait, no, dummy. That one is lugged... )

Here's a little eye candy from my ride tonight:



I've changed his name from "The Roadster" to "His Majesty, King of Bikes", or simply "The King". Why? Look at that regal carriage! He really stands out in the midst of my humble stable.
These pictures are always so nice. I used to have a real camera back in the film days. Maybe if I take a break from spending my money on old broken bicycles I could afford a real camera again...probably not
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Old 08-05-16, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
These pictures are always so nice. I used to have a real camera back in the film days. Maybe if I take a break from spending my money on old broken bicycles I could afford a real camera again...probably not
You really should consider it, Big Chief. The two hobbies complement each other so well.

This is what I use:



I've had to post an image from the makers of the bamboo hand-grips (J&B) because I haven't done the cliche'd "Photographer selfie in mirror with camera" shot.

This is the best digital camera I've used, for a whole variety of reasons. Mainly because it operates like a high-end film camera, with all of the manual settings, if you want.

But it did set me back about twelve-hundred bucks, with the bamboo hand-grip. The good news is that you can buy a Lumix with the same lens and mechanism for about four-hundred less. I got the Leica for a 50th birthday present, because I've never had the top-of-the-line before, and I've always wanted one.
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Old 08-05-16, 10:30 AM
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It was a hobby of mine back in the 70s. And it did go well with the bicycle and motorcycle touring I did back then. I used a Canon SLR with all manual controls. It would be fun to get back into it. I do enjoy the beautiful photos on this thread.
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Old 08-05-16, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
That may be the best idea. Especially since the DS arm is cut away. If you end up having a problem with the spindle length, I have a parts bike in my barn that appears to be a 50s Birmingham bike of some sort. I have no need for the BB spindle. If you run into trouble, let me know. I'll take it apart and measure.
Attachment 533270
Thank you for the offer but I think I've found and fixed the problem.
I took the bike apart today and found the chain case was not centred on the BB.
I tried swapping the spindle but it just made matters worse and the original was installed the right way.
I loosened the case and nudged it forward to centre it.
I re installed a spare chain wheel and it now clears the case...
The full story of today's work here:
https://threespeedmania.wordpress.co...rcules-update/
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Old 08-05-16, 04:59 PM
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Looking good. Glad you got the chaincase clearance problem sorted. I was worried that someone rebuilt the BB with the wrong spindle. This is going to be one sharp bike. Thanks for posting the pictures. I love seeing projects like this come along.
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Old 08-05-16, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
Looking good. Glad you got the chaincase clearance problem sorted. I was worried that someone rebuilt the BB with the wrong spindle. This is going to be one sharp bike. Thanks for posting the pictures. I love seeing projects like this come along.
Thanks again , BC.
The good news was that the cotters came out like butter and the chain was fairly new. It had a master link.
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Old 08-06-16, 08:53 AM
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Although I like the look of the enclosed chain case it seems to offer more problems than solutions...

Feeding the chain through was a lesson in physics. Gravity was used to install and then there's so little space to work at the hub to attach the master link.



Once the chain was installed it was rubbing on the inner guard! Even after adjusting it again there's no way to see if the chain tension is correct. I'm not sure why the British were so obsessed with keeping the drive line enclosed and running in an oil bath....
It just seems overly complicated and fussy to me.



I've made do with some less than perfect cables that were on hand for the time being.

With luck I'll find some NOS ones to complete.

Speaking of cables, these old style brake cables are equally annoying. Once installed and adjusted there's hardly any room left to adjust them/ The front one was NOS and it's close to being maxed out at the barrel.



I replaced the fulcrum cable stop with a standard SA version.

Despite my complaints it's still a nice bike.
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Old 08-06-16, 09:16 AM
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Yes, enclosed chain cases do make maintenance much more difficult, but that's the price for that extra level of civility. You don't have to worry about oil splatter on your argyle knee socks.
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Old 08-06-16, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
Yes, enclosed chain cases do make maintenance much more difficult, but that's the price for that extra level of civility. You don't have to worry about oil splatter on your argyle knee socks.
It also makes them almost maintenance free, and oiling should be done with almost all of the chain case left on. It's the idea of the oil bath that is overly complicated and fussy. Normal fully enclosed chain cases are a blessing for lazy people, but you don't want to take a the wheel out or something unless necessary, because it is always a fiddly job to get the chain case back on.
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Old 08-06-16, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by gster
Feeding the chain through was a lesson in physics. Gravity was used to install and then there's so little space to work at the hub to attach the master link.



Once the chain was installed it was rubbing on the inner guard! Even after adjusting it again there's no way to see if the chain tension is correct. I'm not sure why the British were so obsessed with keeping the drive line enclosed and running in an oil bath....
It just seems overly complicated and fussy to me.
Agree with the above - and the other thing you might find (I did anyway) is that its much noisier in use (the chaincase echoes a lot in my experience). I ran one of my bikes without a guard or case and it was the quietest riding bike I ever had - put on the chaincase and lots of road noise. Looks cool though...
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