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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 09-14-18, 03:25 PM
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Pix. NOW!!!
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Old 09-14-18, 04:06 PM
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This last weekend was the St. Paul Classic.

My girlfriend didn't want to do the 30 mile loop so we did the 15 mile instead. But that meant climbing the Ramsey Hill. I was on my 1951 Humber Sports, which is equipped with the FW 4-speed hub. The bike is otherwise stock gears- 46 in front, 19 in back. For those not in the Twin Cities, this hill is notoriously steep! But its only three blocks, so I put it in low and rode the bike up without stopping, which felt pretty good. The Humber is a roadster and not particularly light Considering that the majority of people on the Classic had to push their bikes up this hill, it was nice to find out that the Humber was geared well enough that I could ride it all the way up (and pass others on the way). I really do feel like this bike is well set up for touring.

Next year we should have a British roll-out.

All British Cycle Event this weekend.
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Old 09-14-18, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Salubrious
I was on my 1951 Humber Sports, which is equipped with the FW 4-speed hub. The bike is otherwise stock gears- 46 in front, 19 in back.
Sheldons calculator says that's 41.8 gear inches, not too shabby at all! I'll bet there was more than a few sheepish looks behind your back. Nice work.

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Old 09-14-18, 09:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Salubrious
This last weekend was the St. Paul Classic.

My girlfriend didn't want to do the 30 mile loop so we did the 15 mile instead. But that meant climbing the Ramsey Hill. I was on my 1951 Humber Sports, which is equipped with the FW 4-speed hub. The bike is otherwise stock gears- 46 in front, 19 in back. For those not in the Twin Cities, this hill is notoriously steep! But its only three blocks, so I put it in low and rode the bike up without stopping, which felt pretty good. The Humber is a roadster and not particularly light Considering that the majority of people on the Classic had to push their bikes up this hill, it was nice to find out that the Humber was geared well enough that I could ride it all the way up (and pass others on the way). I really do feel like this bike is well set up for touring.

Next year we should have a British roll-out.

All British Cycle Event this weekend.
lovely to hear from someone riding an FW. I'm still working to get mine installed onto something.
This just makes me more excited for the project.
Do you have any pictures of the humber?
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Old 09-14-18, 10:09 PM
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Finally! Lots of rules! Didn't know you couldn't post more than 5 times in 24 hours. Well, I'll post better pics tomorrow, but here are my black 72 and green 74 sports.


Recently acquired 74. Needs period pedals. I know I need a better pic here. It's in fantastic shape.


72 Malaysian Sports. i've added a large green canvas saddlebag that is not in this picture.
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Old 09-14-18, 10:41 PM
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More pics of the 72. It was in great shape when I found it. $80 garage buy, but I love it because while I'd been riding bikes, I hadn't done much mechanical work. I flipped the bars, changed the tires to these delta cruisers, changed the front axle (I broke the original because I didn't know about the cones!) swapped to a 22T rear cog, found the rack at the coop, purchased the b17 narrow with chrome rails off ebay for $30 and added the bell. I still need to do more cleaning, but I'm more of a good enough type of guy.



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Old 09-14-18, 10:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Salubrious
This last weekend was the St. Paul Classic.

My girlfriend didn't want to do the 30 mile loop so we did the 15 mile instead. But that meant climbing the Ramsey Hill. I was on my 1951 Humber Sports, which is equipped with the FW 4-speed hub. The bike is otherwise stock gears- 46 in front, 19 in back. For those not in the Twin Cities, this hill is notoriously steep! But its only three blocks, so I put it in low and rode the bike up without stopping, which felt pretty good. The Humber is a roadster and not particularly light Considering that the majority of people on the Classic had to push their bikes up this hill, it was nice to find out that the Humber was geared well enough that I could ride it all the way up (and pass others on the way). I really do feel like this bike is well set up for touring.

Next year we should have a British roll-out.

All British Cycle Event this weekend.
Ive already planned to skip Ramsey Hill. Ill take the Grand Ave. bypass!
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Old 09-15-18, 08:14 AM
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Originally Posted by clengman
My wife has been looking for a good bike path cruiser for a while. I came across this Raleigh sport step through at a garage sale today. For $20 I decided to go for it. It has a shimano 333 hub which doesn't seem to be working, but I should be able to get a used sturmey archer hub and shifter at my favorite bike shop (plug for Bicycle Heaven in Pittsburgh, PA!). Everything else seems to be in really good shape! My wife is very happy. She looks good on it, too.
Some after pictures. Not that it needed a whole lot of work, but it's got an AW hub now, that's working and shifting well. Altogether I probably spent about $100. I'm sure I could have done it for cheaper, but I'm always happy to spend some money at Bicycle Heaven.





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Old 09-15-18, 11:45 AM
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That looks great. The tires look good with this color. Nice job and at 100, you're still under the bike's value by quite a bit.
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Old 09-16-18, 02:19 PM
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Another interesting CL ad in Boston. Great looking his (23") her (S5 Sprite) 69-70? pair in bronze green. Nice! Wish the photos were better.
https://boston.craigslist.org/gbs/bi...687006642.html
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Old 09-16-18, 02:45 PM
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What a Find!
Money well spent.
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Old 09-16-18, 08:58 PM
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Went back to the coop today to look for period pedals for the 74 Sports. Went ahead and picked up this 19" Sports and will give it to my son when he's old enough to ride in a few years. I also picked up a black 23" Sports, probaby 60's but I haven't checked the hub yet. Looked to be in decent shape. I planned to use for spare parts for my black 72, but it looks to be in too good a shape to part. Not sure what I'm going to do yet. Ha, I slso grabbed the pedals from a ladies Robin Hood for my 74. Went looking for pedals and got two more bikes...



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Old 09-17-18, 12:33 AM
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Well, I survived the local ABCE (All British Cycle Event) and had a great time! The 30 mile ride should have been really pleasant, but the temp was around 90 and the humidity was in the 70% range. I’m convinced that it was the deep-fried chicken tenders and the two beers at lunch that slowed me down. The great thing about an event like this is meeting so many other nutters who really enjoy their bikes as well as the camaraderie that is built into an event like this. I’m definitely looking forward to doing this again next year! Here’s a pic of my buddy and his ‘64 Robin Hood and me with my ‘63 Sports. If any of you have any qualms about doing a group ride, forget about the fears - it’s A blast!



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Old 09-17-18, 06:04 AM
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I tend to wimp out in the heat, but I would have loved to do that ride with you. I may have to load up my bike and travel to one of these events someday. I only ever ride alone and not a soul I know has any interest in my hobby. That must be fun. Beautiful bikes! Love your Sports.
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Old 09-17-18, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by ddeand
Well, I survived the local ABCE (All British Cycle Event) and had a great time! The 30 mile ride should have been really pleasant, but the temp was around 90 and the humidity was in the 70% range. Im convinced that it was the deep-fried chicken tenders and the two beers at lunch that slowed me down. The great thing about an event like this is meeting so many other nutters who really enjoy their bikes as well as the camaraderie that is built into an event like this. Im definitely looking forward to doing this again next year! Heres a pic of my buddy and his 64 Robin Hood and me with my 63 Sports. If any of you have any qualms about doing a group ride, forget about the fears - itts A blast!
Very nice. I'm sure it was a lot of fun.
Questions, did you by chance take note of what tire most were running in that event? Did anybody have a flat? How many in the group?
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Old 09-17-18, 08:40 AM
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ABCE Highlights

This will only be a teaser, because I'm at work right now and haven't processed all my photos from the weekend yet.

I rode my Super Course light-roadster conversion for this event, and I must admit, we did rather well together.



She performed flawlessly on the 30-mile ride around the Twin Cities on Saturday. Then on Sunday we had bike show judging at the Cycle Jumble in Barley John's parking lot, and a 5-mile Gentleman's Tour with a "Gravity Race (...and Day-Old Pastry Joust)" in the middle of it.

Let me `splain that second one First they give you a weapon a small wooden skewer and you start at the top of a hill. There is no pedaling allowed, and you coast down to the flat section, where you take a left turn. Suspended on a string from a pole over the road is a day-old pastry, which you are supposed to impale with your skewer, and then you roll as far as you can until the bike tips to one side and you have to put your foot down. There they make your mark in the center of your front contact patch, and write your name and competition class (either hub or derailleur gear) on the pavement.

My Super Course won the hub class with her Soma 700c wheelset (Oriental Treachery!), and a rear Sturmey-Archer hub lubricated with chain-and-cable lube from a spray can. I flushed the thing out on Saturday night and refilled with the lightweight lube especially for this event. Then I did the top-tube-straddle descending technique that I learned from watching Chris Froome in the Tour de France earlier this year, and I am convinced that really made a difference. My mark was about half a block distant from second place. But you do suffer a bit over the bumps!



Along with this neat certificate, I was awarded a wooden clothespin and the Joker from a deck of cards. These I will be required to attach to my seatstay for next years event, so the friction of the card snapping against the spokes will act as a sort of Index of Performance Handicap.

Of course, the incredible Mercian tandem blew right past my mark another half-block to win the derailleur class. Gravity loves all that extra weight, punching the same size hole through the air. That bike also won "Best in Show". With your permission, I will be posting a photo of that magnificent machine here sometime this evening.

Speaking of bike show judging, Super Course also won this award for "Best English Custom":


I believe the proper English way to say this is that I was well-chuffed with our results. Now the challenge ahead of me is to build an even better bike for next year's event. At this point, that looks like a tall order indeed. But we shall see what I can come up with.

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Old 09-17-18, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by BigChief
I tend to wimp out in the heat, but I would have loved to do that ride with you. I may have to load up my bike and travel to one of these events someday. I only ever ride alone and not a soul I know has any interest in my hobby. That must be fun. Beautiful bikes! Love your Sports.
While the heat and humidity was pretty bad, nobody seemed to be affected by it enough to drop out. We mostly took it nice and easy (averaged about 10.5 mph) with a lot of stops. There were riders from all over the Upper Midwest - a couple guys from Winnipeg, some people from Iowa and Wisconsin, and others from out of town. If it weren't for my buddy, I wouldn't even own a 3-speed - he's the only one who does this stuff, and we have a nice time talking about and working on our bikes. He and I have other friends with whom we ride road bikes a lot, but they think we're nuts when we start on about the Raleighs. Find a nearby group if you can. Lots of great people and instant friends out there on old steel!

Very nice. I'm sure it was a lot of fun.
Questions, did you by chance take note of what tire most were running in that event? Did anybody have a flat? How many in the group?
I was concentrating so hard on wiping the sweat out of my eyes that I didn't take the time to check on tires, but I didn't see any flats. We estimated around 45 +/- in the group, and we all hung together pretty well until lunch. Then, a couple of us had that extra beer, another group stopped off at Izzy's for ice cream, and a bunch of other riders got lost in downtown St. Paul. By the end of the ride, we were pretty well fragmented.

Check the posts by DQrider for some better pics. Here are a few random shots from the ride and the swap meet the next day.




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Old 09-17-18, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by clubman
Sheldons calculator says that's 41.8 gear inches, not too shabby at all! I'll bet there was more than a few sheepish looks behind your back. Nice work.

Did you have to stand, or dare to stand, ever?
I stood on the cranks until the last half block, then did the traverse for a little bit then got back the cranks . No worries standing on the cranks if you have an FW in good nick and the cable set up properly! The same holds true of the AW FWIW; I've stood on the cranks of my '72 Superbe in second and first with no worries. But usually the only need for that is in first.
IMO/IME the proper way to set the cable tension is to put it in low and make sure the toggle chain is all the way extended but not under excess tension- Just enough to that there is no play. Set up this way I've not had the hub fail me. So far though not much experience with FM hubs- the only one I had mounted on a wheel failed before I could get any time on it- the hub shell cracked and the spokes pulled the crack wide open. I suspect that hub may have been cracked before it came to my possession. At any rate the FM is known for dropping out in low, which can't be good if you are standing on the cranks. As one gentleman at the ABCD said this weekend- 'if that happens, you're knickered'
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Old 09-17-18, 11:46 AM
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@tigervw78, I approve of those improvements! Not that you asked me.
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Old 09-17-18, 11:46 AM
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I wish we had a group of 3 speed enthusiasts in the Memphis area. Visited Lake Itasca, Marcel and Duluth last year and would love to do the Lake Pepin. We have a couple non-profits that have started casual group rides which is nice. From what I can tell it's mainly cyclists and mountain bikers here.

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Old 09-17-18, 11:51 AM
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Thanks @noglider. I've definitely got the bug now. Spent about 4 hours yesterday clearing out the garage to make space for the extra bikes I brought home. Now both my daughter and son want multiple bikes.
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Old 09-17-18, 06:25 PM
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ABCE Continued...

Okay, home at last, and photos processed.

I'm going to split these between this thread - all the 3 speed / internal hub stuff - and "Where Did You Ride Today" for all the rest.

Saturday began in front of Merlin's Rest pub on Lake Street in Minneapolis. They weren't open when we gathered at 9 a.m., but it was a good central location for everyone to meet.



Right away I knew we were going to see some very special vintage bicycles, as this old WW2 paratrooper bike illustrates:


Now, I think this is a BSA, but don't quote me on that...

This old Raleigh Sports belongs to a chap named Julio, originally from Costa Rica, who was very keen on the whole English 3-speed scene.



Apparently, they had a Raleigh dealership in his town where he grew up, and he always lusted after one.

Anyway, once everyone was milling around sufficiently, the signal to start our 30 mile sojourn came in the form of handlebar bells ringing. Soon everyone was off and riding...



We had a wide variety of riders participating as, unlike the Lake Pepin 3-Speed Tour, this event allows any type of bicycle, as long as it is British-built. So the lycra folk mingled with the tweedy set, and everyone got along just fine. Of course, with such a diverse group, the pace by necessity was quite leisurely. There were plenty of stops, and the social aspect of the event came to the fore. I became so engaged in conversation and all the distractions of group riding that I soon forgot I had a camera hanging from my neck, so my photographs from Saturday's long, HOT ride are woefully inadequate.

We ate brunch at a place called the Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery, and proceeded from there to Minnehaha Falls. The light was wrong for any decent photography, so I secured my camera in my saddlebag for the rest of Saturday's ride.

On Sunday we had the 5-mile Gentleman's Tour, as I mentioned earlier, with the Gravity Race and Day-Old Pastry Joust. For this we gathered at Barley John's in New Brighton, and enjoyed a bit of Cycle Jumble before setting off. There were many wares on display, and my Leica was much more active in this venue:









There were some truly magnificent machines on display. This Claude Butler Roadster showed what the English 3-Speed could be at it's best.



But eventually the bells sounded once again, and we were off on the Gentleman's Tour.



Now, I was so keen on participating at my best that I didn't take any photographs during the Gravity Race either. In retrospect, I wish I had, as you really had to see that Pastry Joust setup to appreciate the lengths these fellows go to for a good time. I've already exercised my bragging rights (Bad Form!), so I won't bore you by telling the story again.

And I believe I have bumped up against my 10 photo limit for one post. So please forgive me, but I will have to tell the rest of the tale over at "Where Did You Ride Today"...

.
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Old 09-17-18, 07:26 PM
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At it's best, the three speed could be a track bike with fat tyres?
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Old 09-17-18, 08:19 PM
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Thanks for sharing those photos. Now I can prove to my wife that there's others out there just like me. Looks like a lot of fun.
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Old 09-17-18, 10:28 PM
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Wow! What a cool event! Those bikes are flawless and make me feel like I really need to polish up my sports. Haha
Over here in the Pacific Northwest it's getting rainy again. Frankly I missed it. We had another long dry spell this year and all this rain makes it feel like home again. I'm finding that fall feels more like what summer used to be.
The only sad thing about the rain is that I cant enjoy riding around my sports given it's old steel rims.
Between the grey rainy days we still get some cool sunny ones and this was one of them.
I decided to take advantage of the dry weather and take my sports out for a ride. I got this great little handlebar bag for $15. I really like the way it looks on my commuter and hanging on the rack of the sport its not half bad eithier.


I just love this bike. I really missed riding with no hands. My daily commuter just doesnt feel the same. I still need to get the cranks reset with some new cotter pins but other than that everything is just so smooth. It wasnt a long ride, just down to the hardware store and grabbing some to-go food for me and my partner. I'm trying to keep it stabled untill I get the cotter pins redone, but I just couldnt resist taking it out for a short spin. The weather and the bike made it a really wonderful jaunt though.

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