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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 04-15-11, 06:29 AM
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Very nice, the color looks great with the tires, saddle and grips. The front rack is a nice touch, Perfect to haul the Sunday Paper home.
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Old 04-15-11, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by sekaijin
I finally took my restored Hercules out for spring!
Beautiful... just beautiful.
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Old 04-15-11, 09:40 AM
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Great work!

I'm learning to use the handling of my 3-speed. With practice, I can make tight turns at very high speed. It's different from my more modern bikes. This is no slug when it turns! I probably gave the pedestrian at the corner a heart attack. He was on the curb waiting for a light. I turned the corner, inches from the curb, at high speed. I bet he didn't know someone could do that. Oops. Sorry, Mr. Pedestrian.
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Old 04-15-11, 09:45 AM
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Gorgeous Hercules !
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Old 04-15-11, 10:56 AM
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I finally took my restored Hercules out for spring!
Wow. And that's the cleanest looking 42 year old hub I've ever seen.
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Old 04-15-11, 11:04 AM
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So i have a question, I was going to replace the self adjusting brake levers on my wife's raleigh with some regular diacompe levers. well i noticed on the brake arms there is no adjustment screw. can i still use the set up that im wanting to use, old brake arms with different levers. Or am i stuck using the self adjusting levers. Hopefully that makes sense.

here is the self adjusting brake lever that im talking about, i read somewhere that these brake levers are not to good, and these were no exception they just didnt seen to run correctly.


and here are the brake arms with no self adjusting screw. and i also read that these brakes were not the best either. I would go ahead and replace the brake calipers but i have nothing that will reach.
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Old 04-15-11, 03:04 PM
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You can certainly use ordinary levers with no adjusters. You just won't be able to make adjustments quickly with your fingers. You'll have to make them with a wrench.

I don't like the vintage Dia Compe levers, though. Get vintage Raleigh levers. Mafac levers for upright bars are impossible to find, but I love them. But your best bet is some new Tektro levers. They're very good.

Oh, and you can add barrel adjusters to the calipers. It's easy, if you can find them. Your best bet is cannibalization.
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Old 04-15-11, 03:21 PM
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You can add an adjuster to the brakes, but you will have to canablize a set from somewhere. They go in place of the upper cable stop on the brakes. I will have to look, I have two or three Raleighs with that type of brake on it.

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Old 04-15-11, 04:38 PM
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This thread never ceases to amaze me. Such beautiful bikes!
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Old 04-15-11, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by ftwelder
This thread never ceases to amaze me. Such beautiful bikes!
If there was any money in it I'd be building roadsters but with all of these beautiful vintage bikes still rolling around there's no point in that.

Might build one for the lady as she has some unique fit issues and has always wanted a classic roadster with some modern touches.
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Old 04-15-11, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver
If there was any money in it I'd be building roadsters but with all of these beautiful vintage bikes still rolling around there's no point in that.

Might build one for the lady as she has some unique fit issues and has always wanted a classic roadster with some modern touches.
Mike Flanigan with ANT seems to be doing okay with it...

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Old 04-15-11, 05:16 PM
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thanx noglider and wahoonc for the help. I wanted to use the raleigh levers that are on it now, i might have to try them over again and really mess with them. and I think my wife would dread tektro's she likes the vintage stuff.


this thread is one of the best on the forum.
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Old 04-15-11, 05:45 PM
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new levers

I don't like the vintage Dia Compe levers, though. Get vintage Raleigh levers. Mafac levers for upright bars are impossible to find, but I love them. But your best bet is some new Tektro levers. They're very good.
noglider, I've been wanting to use modern/tektro levers, but the ones I've seen do not fit "northroad" bars; they are for mountain bike bars

What tektro model did you have in mind?

thanks, nick

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Old 04-15-11, 09:38 PM
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How about the VO city bike levers?
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Old 04-15-11, 10:26 PM
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How about the VO city bike levers?
I have a pair; they are much the same design as the dia compe/weinmanns; they work well enough, but I would like to find levers similar to mountain bikes, but that fit the larger road bar diameter
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Old 04-16-11, 05:34 AM
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I've just picked up a 1977 Raleigh Cameo for my wife - no pics of the bike yet, but here's one she took from the car on the way back:

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Old 04-16-11, 05:37 AM
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nick22, I'll have to check. There are some Tektro levers I've been buying. They have two settings, one for linear pull brakes and one for all the others. They're about $15 or $20 per pair.

ftwelder, I agree. It is amazing.

What's amazing also is that in Manhattan, cycling for transportation has increased like nothing anyone would have predicted. In some parts of the city, there are several bike racks on every block. There are about four bikes per rack. That's like 15 bikes per block parked outside. And the old English 3-speed is very well represented. Consider that they haven't been made since about 1979 and they're still prominent here. It blows my mind, but think about it: these are one of the most reliable models this country has seen over the last 50 years. That's because we don't have many single speed coaster brake bikes, at least in this part of the country. Anyway, 3-speeds rock, and I've finally started riding one regularly, and my love for them has increased from deep to unfathomable.
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Old 04-16-11, 05:39 AM
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And jamesj, let me see if I have any generic steel levers. If I do, they're old or old-esque, so your wife will like them. If I don't, I bet you can find them cheap. If your LBS will let you poke through their junk bin, you might find a pair there.
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Old 04-16-11, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider
What's amazing also is that in Manhattan, cycling for transportation has increased like nothing anyone would have predicted.
I've seen a number of beat-but-working vintage Raleighs locked up on the streets. And there's a C&V shop:https://landmarkbicycles.com/index.html
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Old 04-16-11, 10:16 AM
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There was a time when I rarely saw a bike like my old Raleigh Superbe cruising the streets but now their popularity is such that getting one is a little harder and very nice examples are fetching decent sums of money.

Some are pristine and some are battered and beaten but they are all beautiful... I think I prefer the much loved and ridden one's more than the ones that look like they have spent their lives in a garage.
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Old 04-16-11, 11:25 AM
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Beautiful plunging neckline

Okay, so I know this isn't a three speed, but I'm interested in getting a three speed with a frame like this (a loop frame?). Any thoughts about these? I'd love a Raleigh, Rudge, or Dutch (okay, not English, but from the other side of the pond) bike. I gather that the sports and tourists were not made with this type of frame. Was it just the DL-1?

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Old 04-16-11, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Buikema
Okay, so I know this isn't a three speed, but I'm interested in getting a three speed with a frame like this (a loop frame?). Any thoughts about these? I'd love a Raleigh, Rudge, or Dutch (okay, not English, but from the other side of the pond) bike. I gather that the sports and tourists were not made with this type of frame. Was it just the DL-1?
Nope some late model UK bikes were made with the loop frame.

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Old 04-16-11, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by sekaijin
I finally took my restored Hercules out for spring!




I hope you didn't take that out in today's weather! Nice work again.
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Old 04-16-11, 08:36 PM
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I rode my Rudge to the train yesterday to see a concert in New York. I locked it at the train station.

I met my wife in the city. She had driven in. When we got back home, we were too darned tired to pick up the bike or for me to ride it home, so I left it at the train station overnight. I picked it up today in the driving rain. I hope the rain didn't do more damage to the B72 saddle. It's 50 years old and cracked, and I guess I should put some oil or Proofide on it.
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Old 04-16-11, 08:54 PM
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Or in hind sight, a plastic bag.
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