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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 11-29-20, 07:23 PM
  #23426  
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
They both appear to be Sports frames. Dawns?
Dawn is pretty much a moniker for a rod-brake Sports. Neither of Neal's are.

Look closely at the geometry of the earlier bike. It may be built like a Sports (brazed stays, dropouts), but the frame angles are much slacker. Here's my 23" 1952 Sports for comparison. Note the seattube and headtube angle. The seatstays on the '52 are also a lot slacker than Neal's acquisition, which correlates the difference in seattube angles between a usual Sports and the 1930's/40s machine that Neal has.




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Old 11-29-20, 07:25 PM
  #23427  
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Yup. Can't remember and far too lazy to look it up.
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Old 11-29-20, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
Yup. Can't remember and far too lazy to look it up.
It's a Sports Tourist. This '38 catalog shows it, and the '39 and '40 catalogs correlate it:

https://threespeedhub.com/wp-content/...og-1939-UK.pdf
https://threespeedhub.com/wp-content/...og-1940-UK.pdf
US catalog also has it:
https://threespeedhub.com/wp-content/...og-1940-US.pdf




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Old 11-29-20, 08:13 PM
  #23429  
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Thatís interesting. Given the quadrant shifter, I was expecting to find a 1930s hub on the menís (havenít cleaned the ladyís rear hub off yet to see the date, and the trigger plate is completely devoid of any markings). The frame angles donít look particularly slack to my eye, but I can measure them.

I also just realized that the stems might be a clue. They match and are definitely rounder in profile than the 1950s ones Iíve seen (and that usually have Raleigh Industries stamped everywhere).
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Old 11-30-20, 12:32 PM
  #23430  
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Thatís interesting. Given the quadrant shifter, I was expecting to find a 1930s hub on the menís (havenít cleaned the ladyís rear hub off yet to see the date, and the trigger plate is completely devoid of any markings). The frame angles donít look particularly slack to my eye, but I can measure them.

I also just realized that the stems might be a clue. They match and are definitely rounder in profile than the 1950s ones Iíve seen (and that usually have Raleigh Industries stamped everywhere).
Obviously someone changed out the hub. The Alloy hubs didn't show up until after the war. That is clearly a part worthy of restoration!
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Old 11-30-20, 01:21 PM
  #23431  
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Isn't the men's version one of those oddball 1930's models with slack DL-1 geometry on EA3 wheels? Might be worth giving that one a new life.

-Kurt
Well, here's some definitive evidence that these Sports are from the 1930s. Rear hub on the lady's model:


That's a K-series hub from 1935 or '37 (stamping makes it hard to tell).

Here's that front stem that I mentioned. Note that the lamp bracket attaches at the stem bolt, rather than as part of the headset. I've only seen this on 1930s models:
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Old 11-30-20, 02:17 PM
  #23432  
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You're going to need some Kroil! But yes, that's a 30's style stem.
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Old 11-30-20, 02:39 PM
  #23433  
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Well, here's some definitive evidence that these Sports are from the 1930s. Rear hub on the lady's model:

That's a K-series hub from 1935 or '37 (stamping makes it hard to tell).

Here's that front stem that I mentioned. Note that the lamp bracket attaches at the stem bolt, rather than as part of the headset. I've only seen this on 1930s models:
The headset is also the earlier variant, as are the sidepulls. For some reason, I didn't realize the ladies' model is from the 1930's too at first, as it has the more common frame angles of later models. 1937 Sports "C" Tourist?

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Old 11-30-20, 02:48 PM
  #23434  
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Possibly. I have a 1935 Sports and can confirm it has more slack frame angles.
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Old 11-30-20, 03:39 PM
  #23435  
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Before-
1930s Raleigh Sports. In a damp shed never ridden since 1945.


After,
fitted with Resilion brakes and fixed wheel


Before,
1933 Sports stored since 1945 in damp garage.


After,
fitted with pannies for touring , only needed new seat and new rims.


Both your bikes are prewar. These bikes are wonderful to work on. The steel is high quality. The rims need replacing after 70 years service. The frames can handle a blowtorch if need be with no ill-effects. The K7 hub is a great find. They are tough but spares are impossible to get, so go easy with the indicator springs.
Check out 'How a Bicycle is Made' on Youtube. Both your models feature. I'm certain these bikes will give more satisfaction than any other your work on.
Lloyds Decals UK do period correct nylon decals as well as the crazy fragile water decals for the purist.
Great find- have fun. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 11-30-20, 03:39 PM
  #23436  
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I can confirm that both bikes have EA3--26 x 1 3/8" wheels (with the men's rear, at least, not original) with Dunlop tires all around. Perhaps the originals?!

I find it interesting, too, that while the men's frame certainly has more slack angles than later models, they are still a fair amount more upright than an early 1930s Sports that I had for a while:


Last edited by nlerner; 11-30-20 at 03:44 PM.
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Old 11-30-20, 03:42 PM
  #23437  
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Originally Posted by Johno59 View Post
Both your bikes are prewar. These bikes are wonderful to work on. The steel is high quality. The rims need replacing after 70 years service. The frames can handle a blowtorch if need be with no ill-effects. The K7 hub is a great find. They are tough but spares are impossible to get, so go easy with the indicator springs.
Check out 'How a Bicycle is Made' on Youtube. Both your models feature. I'm certain these bikes will give more satisfaction than any other your work on.
Lloyds Decals UK do period correct nylon decals as well as the crazy fragile water decals for the purist.
Great find- have fun. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks for those inspiring examples! I was actually able to unscrew the left-side indicator of the K-hub, pull out the right (the indicator is quite rusted to the gear cable) and remove the rear wheel. Interestingly, the chain looks to be in quite good shape. I guess those full chaincases really do keep things tidy!
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Old 11-30-20, 04:37 PM
  #23438  
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Seats, chains, indicator chains, rims and tires are all replaceable with new, Don't sweat the little ****. If your gears aren't shifting squirt some WD 40 down the filler and leave for a few days. K7 parts - especially the indicator rods - are impossible to replace. But the good news is the ones you have are made of high quality steel and once freed up can be cleaned and good to go,
BITD the steel had a lot of chromium mixed during the forging so the rust tends to be surface and superficial. After the 1960's steel quality went to crap and everything rusted like hell. But both your bikes are in the sweet zone. So with a bit of patience and TLC nothing will snap and you will have two bikes built in the the 1930s being ridden by your grandkids in the 22nd century.
And it doesn't get better than that!

Last edited by Johno59; 11-30-20 at 04:43 PM.
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Old 11-30-20, 08:04 PM
  #23439  
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Blast from the Past


Vintage decals.
Humphry was later absorbed by CCM but did make SA equipped 3 speeds.
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Old 11-30-20, 08:30 PM
  #23440  
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I bought this '53 Rudge Whitworth last spring, and have been loving it! I do have a question regarding the "deluxe" decals on the forks and seat tube. I haven't seen anything like these on any of the Rudges I have seen (which I admit is a small number). Are any of you familiar with them? Also, are any of you familiar with an online 50s Rudge catalog like the Raleigh one recently posted here?




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Old 11-30-20, 09:11 PM
  #23441  
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That’s a remarkably well-preserved Rudge! I have the 1956 catalog, which offers some explanation of the “De-Luxe” models:


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Old 11-30-20, 09:30 PM
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Thanks for that information, It certainly sounds like my bike, except for the Burgundy part. That being said some areas where the black is more worn do appear burgundy. I believe my bike was restored. I bought it from a very nice Pakistani man in Loudoun County Virginia, who explained that they are still regularly used in Pakistan. He had some other British three speeds mostly Raleighs in various states of completion.

Cheers,
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Old 12-01-20, 02:35 AM
  #23443  
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Originally Posted by Johno59 View Post
loyds Decals UK do period correct nylon decals as well as the crazy fragile water decals for the purist.
They have an impressive collection of Reynolds decals too! I think I see virtually all kinds of versions that I haven't seen before.
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Old 12-01-20, 10:35 AM
  #23444  
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Raleigh vs Hercules, Robin Hood, or others

I spotted this on Phila CL last night, the seller said the hub has a 71-10 date code so I'm guessing its a '72 model.

https://philadelphia.craigslist.org/...238702588.html

Its an hour drive or so from me here but looks worth checking out.
What was the AMF connection I see on so many Hercules models?
What are the main differences in say a Raleigh Sports and a Hercules like the one on CL?
The rims are Endrick vs Westrick style, and only the Raleigh models have the tubular fork crown, but otherwise they look like the same bike?

Who sold the Hercules models? I remember seeing Raleigh bikes in local bike shops in the 70's, but I don't recall ever seeing Hercules, Robin Hood, or any of the other sister brands back then. Were they sold through department stores?

The stem, bars, brakes, and crank arms on the Hercules models I've seen all carry the Sir Raleigh logo.
I'm seeing some pretty high prices on these lately if they're even remotely clean, the one on CL above looks pretty minty in the pics. The seller sent me a few close ups and it almost looks new. Considering its nearing the 50 year old mark, that alone I suppose is worth something.
There's plenty of well used or neglected models, in all brands but this one really caught my eye.

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Old 12-01-20, 10:50 AM
  #23445  
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You're correct, it's a Raleigh frame with different options and like crankset, rims, pump fittings, mudguard and fork crowns. AMF bought Raleigh - Hercules bikes and rebranded them again with AMF decals. I can't speak for the US but independent bike shops here in Canada could usually pick whatever brand they wanted from the distributor's catalogues.

It's in great shape but that's top dollar, which is fine as long as it's a turnkey bike with no issues. Personally, I'd hold out for a 50's/early 60's model with more patina and less cost. The chrome and build quality were just that much better as you go back to the war.
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Old 12-01-20, 12:38 PM
  #23446  
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
You're correct, it's a Raleigh frame with different options and like crankset, rims, pump fittings, mudguard and fork crowns. AMF bought Raleigh - Hercules bikes and rebranded them again with AMF decals. I can't speak for the US but independent bike shops here in Canada could usually pick whatever brand they wanted from the distributor's catalogues.

It's in great shape but that's top dollar, which is fine as long as it's a turnkey bike with no issues. Personally, I'd hold out for a 50's/early 60's model with more patina and less cost. The chrome and build quality were just that much better as you go back to the war.
I agree with Clubman
Nice bike but overpriced unless all the work's been done
i.e. new tires
repacked bearings
new brake pads etc.
Those rims look really clean
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Old 12-01-20, 01:13 PM
  #23447  
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I would avoid these 1970s bikes. Raleigh was fast losing interest in its own bikes leave alone some down - market model with a different badge. Hercules made great bikes and their own hubs, selectors, brakes etc. but like Phillips, Whitworth -Rudge, Sunbeam, BSA etc. that was pre- war and maybe a decade or so later. The pre-war bikes are much better made in every aspect. Hercules had a well-earned reputation for being really tough in an era where bikes were built to last for a 50 years easy, doing 10 thousand miles a year and very little maintenance.
Hold out for a real one.
The real ones look pretty ratty and thus rather cheap to buy but that is no problem the steel is very high quality. The one in your photo looks like a very small frame. One feature of the two 1940s Hercules I had was they used 1 inch tubing for the frames but the quality of the steel made them bomb-proof.

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Old 12-01-20, 04:10 PM
  #23448  
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Originally Posted by Johno59 View Post
I would avoid these 1970s bikes. Raleigh was fast losing interest in its own bikes leave alone some down - market model with a different badge. Hercules made great bikes and their own hubs, selectors, brakes etc. but like Phillips, Whitworth -Rudge, Sunbeam, BSA etc. that was pre- war and maybe a decade or so later. The pre-war bikes are much better made in every aspect. Hercules had a well-earned reputation for being really tough in an era where bikes were built to last for a 50 years easy, doing 10 thousand miles a year and very little maintenance.
Hold out for a real one.
The real ones look pretty ratty and thus rather cheap to buy but that is no problem the steel is very high quality. The one in your photo looks like a very small frame. One feature of the two 1940s Hercules I had was they used 1 inch tubing for the frames but the quality of the steel made them bomb-proof.
What you say is true, but I wouldn't necessarily avoid all the '70s models. Yes, I've taken to dissing them myself, but only because I've been lucky enough to snag a pair of 1950's Sports. A 1970's model is not bad to start a newcomer on and much more accessible. The later ones also lend themselves to upgrading without the "should I / shouldn't I" dilemma one might have with a 1950's model.

But $300 - that's waaay out of line for a mid-1960's AMF Herc-badged Sports. It's out of line even for a bone-stock 1965 Sports. $150 in minty-minty-minty shape, but not a penny more.

-Kurt
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Old 12-01-20, 06:23 PM
  #23449  
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Philly 3 speeds

Iíll join the chorus, $300 is too much for a 70s AMF. There is someone close to philly, that sells rebuilt 3 speeds that look to be nice bikes in that price range. I have a 50ís Hercules listed on Lancaster CL for $250. That is a bike that I actually ride.
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Old 12-01-20, 10:26 PM
  #23450  
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The year doesn't bother me at all, I've looked at a couple dozen bikes lately, there's at least 10 of these listed locally for everywhere from $75 to $750, but each and every one is well used and in need of major restoration. Most are all around the same year. The only older one I've seen was a '57 with an SW rear hub that wouldn't turn.
I've found rusted up rims, missing spokes, and worn or rusted paint.
Regardless of what condition or whether or not its been taken apart and gone through or not, the first thing I do to ALL my bikes is a complete tear down.
I did a five state search and didn't find a single Raleigh built three speed bike in better condition, regardless of year.
The hardest thing to find is good wheels, even bikes I've looked at that were described as being perfect had rusted rims.
I've got a spare stems, bars, seat posts, and cranks, but rims and good original tires are the problem.
I don't think anyone is reproducing original Dunlop or even period correct tires yet. The newer tires are too skinny, they look more like 1 1/4" tires then original the 1 3/8" tires that these came with when new. The best I've been able to do is running Michelin World Tour tires on my two daily riders. I'm not a fan of white wall tires on this type of bike.
There's a 53 Superbe in PA right now with new tires, fair paint, for $725, and its not in a fraction the condition that the Hercules in NJ is in.
While I'd love to find one for $100 in mint condition that doesn't seem likely since I've not found anything cleaner in the last 20 years or so. The last minty clean bike I found was a 1967 Robin Hood but it turned out to have a bad rim. It took me 9 years to find a single perfect rim for that bike.and ended up paying more for the rim than I did for the bike. I missed a set of wheels on eBay over the summer that sold for $200 and only one rim was decent. the other had some pitting.
We had a number of bike shops around here and none carried Hercules, but they seem to be all over lately. There was a dealer who sold Raleigh, and there's a ton of 70's LTD models and plenty of low end road bikes with the occasional Super Course.
There was a mid 70's Raleigh LTD listed nearby for $350, I went to look at it and it was in decent shape but far from perfect. It had been sitting for years in a barn, the paint was ok, the rims had some pitting, and the bars and stem also had rust pitting. I looked at, decided I didn't want to spend that much for a bike plus buy all the new old stock parts it would take to make it perfect again. I called the seller a few days later to see if he'd take less and he said it had just sold.

Here's a few I've watched:

1970-72 a bit rough, similar to the one above but not nearly as clean and over 150 miles away Only $75 but at 12mpg my truck would eat up a good bit of the savings, then I'd still have to deal with finding non-pitted rims and anything else it needs. The I don't answer emails seems a bit odd to me too. Its likely why he still has it after more than a month.
https://lancaster.craigslist.org/bik...220125591.html
Gumwall tires? Missing some decals and ok paint Seat also looks wrong Sold for $699
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Original-1950-039-s-AMF-Hercules-3-Speed-Bicycle
Non original tires, non original pedals, and looks like a repaint Sold for $695
https://www.ebay.com/itm/1971-Antique-AMF-Hercules-Bicycle-Tourist-Bike-Cruiser
1966, very small frame, mismatched tires, fair paint, $399
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-English-Red-1966-AMF-Hercules-3-Speed-Sturmy-Archer
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