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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 07-28-21, 04:15 PM
  #24801  
dirtman
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983 View Post
Yes, it was a GM company. A portion of it continued to operate in Bristol into the 1990s (2000s maybe?). A large portion of the bearings business went to Ohio in the mid-1960s, but a portion of the company continued operating in Bristol, Conn. making certain parts for the GM cars into the 1990s. The surviving portion of New Departure and Torrington Company pressed on longer than most of the medium scale manufacturers here. They both closed around the turn of the millenium when years of gradual outsourcing by the parent companies caught up with them. My older brother worked at the Torrington Co in the 1980s and a couple of family friends worked at New Departure starting from the 1970s to the time it closed. New Departure's hubs were among the best in the world prior to WWII, but the designs did not receive a lot of development post-war. There was more money in cars.

New Departure also made some interesting two-speed and three-speed designs. The multigear hubs and hub parts are expensive today. I've seen a few American-made light roadsters that were 2 speeds or 3 speeds because of New Departure hub upgrades. The balloon tire bike guys tend to harvest the multispeed hubs from the roadsters because they want them for high-end ballooners.
I've got a few twin streak hubs here, and a couple Bendix 2 speeds from the 50's, they came from a lot of stuff I bought a little over a year ago. The Bendix hubs are complete with cables, the ND hubs are both missing their cables. I opened a few of them up just out of curiosity and they looked like new inside, just needed some fresh grease. I doubt I'd ever build one into a wheel for anything though. I thought one bike I have would have taken one but it turned out that the right hub for the later 50's was a kickback 2 speed. I hunted one down, built up a new old stock set of wheels and didn't like it when it was all done, so it got sold. The gear ratios of the yellow band two speed didn't work for me on a heavy Schwinn cruiser. Its more fun with a straight single speed coaster brake.
I had a friend list the ND Twin Streak on fleabay back in the spring, it went off at $118 but the buyer never paid and the second place bidder didn't respond. She was going on vacation so it never got relisted.
I've got a bunch of Sturmey Archer S5 hubs and some complete internals as well. They were going for good money for a while but it seems to be hit or miss on ebay, the last few went super cheap. I've also still got a few ladies Sprites with those hubs, one of which has become my personal beater bike this summer. Not because of the S5 hub, but because of he baskets all over it.
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Old 07-28-21, 07:59 PM
  #24802  
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Man I wish I was closer I would totally pick this up fro my wife.

Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
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Old 07-29-21, 03:43 AM
  #24803  
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I've been watching this bike all summer now, I didn't realize it was the same seller who was selling tires on CL here as well.
I went to pickup a pair of Michelin tires the other day for another bike and he had the Sports right there as well.
I was in my company car, so there was no way i was buying a bike on the spot, but I'm seriously thinking about going back and trying to make a deal on it.
The thing is by far the cleanest one of these I've ever seen in recent years, probably since they were still being sold new.
Its all original, right down to the tires, and even they don't feel bad. No rust, no dents, its not all scratched up, and its a 23" frame.
I remember looking at one just like it back then and not having the cash to buy one new back then.
I figured if i can get it for $200, I'd be doing pretty good considering its condition. If not, maybe I can get the seller to throw in a new set of tires for it.
I'll be back down that area in two weeks, I can take my personal car that day instead of a car from work. .
Not that I need another bike but I wouldn't mind having a really clean one in the garage.




https://southjersey.craigslist.org/b...346835436.html
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Old 07-29-21, 12:54 PM
  #24804  
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I just picked up this 1971 triumph. I would have been 14 when the hub was made. 2-71. First time I have ever found a reasonably priced English 3 speed in my size.
23" for 35 bucks and while rusty and with a loose headset, everything works. Unfortunately I lost the oil cap to the hub. It was a plastic one so if anyone knows where replacements are, that would be great.


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Old 07-29-21, 02:35 PM
  #24805  
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I don't see many Triumph bikes around my way, the only two I've seen over the years were 50's era bikes, one was rusted beyond repair, the other one had a bent frame and had 10 coats of house paint on it. All that was really salvageable was one headbadge and a crankset.

Your bike looks like its got one Raleigh pattern (Westrick), rear rim and one Dunlop Endrick front rim?
The bike looks older than 1971, and a quick guess is that the rear wheel has been swapped out.
I can't speak for Philips in particular but most of my bikes with that front sprocket are mid 60's or older.
Your bike also has the older style pedals on it, which of course could have also been changed but
when looking at various models back then, both in catalogs and my own bikes, it appears that they started switching to reflector pedals around '68-'69.
I have a 1969 Raleigh Sports and a a 68 Sprite 5 with reflector pedals,a 69 Robin Hood Sports with them as well. My 1962, 65, and '67 Robin Hood bikes do not. My 1965 Robin Hood has the newer three spoke front sprocket, but all my older non-Raleigh TI bikes have the snowflake pattern like yours.
All have the rubber rear reflector mount on the rear fenders.

Overall though it looks like with a little elbow grease and some fresh lube it looks like it'll clean up nicely.
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Old 07-29-21, 03:15 PM
  #24806  
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Originally Posted by 2fat2fly View Post
I've been watching this bike all summer now, I didn't realize it was the same seller who was selling tires on CL here as well.
I went to pickup a pair of Michelin tires the other day for another bike and he had the Sports right there as well.
I was in my company car, so there was no way i was buying a bike on the spot, but I'm seriously thinking about going back and trying to make a deal on it.
The thing is by far the cleanest one of these I've ever seen in recent years, probably since they were still being sold new.
Its all original, right down to the tires, and even they don't feel bad. No rust, no dents, its not all scratched up, and its a 23" frame.
I remember looking at one just like it back then and not having the cash to buy one new back then.
I figured if i can get it for $200, I'd be doing pretty good considering its condition. If not, maybe I can get the seller to throw in a new set of tires for it.
I'll be back down that area in two weeks, I can take my personal car that day instead of a car from work. .
Not that I need another bike but I wouldn't mind having a really clean one in the garage.




https://southjersey.craigslist.org/b...346835436.html

I've seen that ad listed for a long time, along with several others in that area and none of them ever seem to sell.
I keep hearing about how there are no good bikes or that folks can't find bikes period these days and bikes like that just sit
unsold for months. I suppose if that bike was 20 miles farther north or so it would have sold a long time ago.
I've answered ads for far lesser bikes in areas closer to the city and not once gotten there in time over the past three years.
People also want a bike like that for $20 not $200. Lately it seems they reserve the big money for department store bikes.
Getting more than about $80 for a bike these days is tough, regardless of what it is. Most simply don't know the difference between
a Raleigh and a Walmart bike with many preferring the Walmart bike.
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Old 07-29-21, 04:47 PM
  #24807  
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Originally Posted by dirtman View Post
I don't see many Triumph bikes around my way, the only two I've seen over the years were 50's era bikes, one was rusted beyond repair, the other one had a bent frame and had 10 coats of house paint on it. All that was really salvageable was one headbadge and a crankset.

Your bike looks like its got one Raleigh pattern (Westrick), rear rim and one Dunlop Endrick front rim?
The bike looks older than 1971, and a quick guess is that the rear wheel has been swapped out.
I can't speak for Philips in particular but most of my bikes with that front sprocket are mid 60's or older.
Your bike also has the older style pedals on it, which of course could have also been changed but
when looking at various models back then, both in catalogs and my own bikes, it appears that they started switching to reflector pedals around '68-'69.
I have a 1969 Raleigh Sports and a a 68 Sprite 5 with reflector pedals,a 69 Robin Hood Sports with them as well. My 1962, 65, and '67 Robin Hood bikes do not. My 1965 Robin Hood has the newer three spoke front sprocket, but all my older non-Raleigh TI bikes have the snowflake pattern like yours.
All have the rubber rear reflector mount on the rear fenders.

Overall though it looks like with a little elbow grease and some fresh lube it looks like it'll clean up nicely.
thank you so much. I was seriously thinking about building wheels since these dont match. I have some some 650a sunrims and a 1954 aluminum cased aw. I would also use a modern Dyno hub on front. Does that seem a reasonable thing to do?

Also, would this bottom bracket be the Raleigh only threading?

Last edited by 52telecaster; 07-29-21 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 07-29-21, 06:22 PM
  #24808  
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Originally Posted by 52telecaster View Post
would this bottom bracket be the Raleigh only threading?
Sheldon Brown offers this advice: "Almost all Raleigh-threaded bikes have the rear fender eyelets located directly behind the axle, instead of above it."



Of course, the definitive answer is only obtained by opening it up and actually checking the threads.
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Old 07-29-21, 06:39 PM
  #24809  
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Originally Posted by 52telecaster View Post

Also, would this bottom bracket be the Raleigh only threading?
Almost certainly, yes.
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Old 07-29-21, 06:54 PM
  #24810  
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It has the eyelets so the bottom bracket must be the Raleigh spec.
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Old 07-29-21, 07:55 PM
  #24811  
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So I may be able to snag a pair of British 3-speeds for my mom and dad. Are these nice to ride? I would guess so, haha. The samples I found are surprisingly inexpensive too.
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Old 07-30-21, 12:36 AM
  #24812  
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Originally Posted by molleraj View Post
So I may be able to snag a pair of British 3-speeds for my mom and dad. Are these nice to ride? I would guess so, haha. The samples I found are surprisingly inexpensive too.
they will probably need a larger rear sprocket and the need to be close to the right size. If they fit they are great for tooling around the neighborhood.
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Old 07-30-21, 12:57 AM
  #24813  
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Originally Posted by dirtman View Post
I don't see many Triumph bikes around my way, the only two I've seen over the years were 50's era bikes, one was rusted beyond repair, the other one had a bent frame and had 10 coats of house paint on it. All that was really salvageable was one headbadge and a crankset.

Your bike looks like its got one Raleigh pattern (Westrick), rear rim and one Dunlop Endrick front rim?
The bike looks older than 1971, and a quick guess is that the rear wheel has been swapped out.
I can't speak for Philips in particular but most of my bikes with that front sprocket are mid 60's or older.
Your bike also has the older style pedals on it, which of course could have also been changed but
when looking at various models back then, both in catalogs and my own bikes, it appears that they started switching to reflector pedals around '68-'69.
I have a 1969 Raleigh Sports and a a 68 Sprite 5 with reflector pedals,a 69 Robin Hood Sports with them as well. My 1962, 65, and '67 Robin Hood bikes do not. My 1965 Robin Hood has the newer three spoke front sprocket, but all my older non-Raleigh TI bikes have the snowflake pattern like yours.
All have the rubber rear reflector mount on the rear fenders.

Overall though it looks like with a little elbow grease and some fresh lube it looks like it'll clean up nicely.
When I look at that bike I see what appears to be a plastic jockey wheel, which if original puts it after 1962.
I agree, the Snowflake crankset is usually older, but the three point style was also around in the late 50's, however, every 50's era Triumph I've seen had a Triumph only fork crown cap with a small T on each side.
I've also seen the snowflake pattern chainring on later bikes, but whether or not they were replaced or original is unclear. I don't put much weight on the style of the chainring other than the fact that I tend to see more with that ring in the early 60's models.
I also do not see any pump pegs, unless they are cut off, I believe the Triumph models lost the pegs in or around 1970/71 or so.
When a bike gets to be 50 or more years old, its hard to say what was original or not, only the selling dealer and the original owner can say for sure, and there's a good chance they're not here to tell use anymore.
From a replacement parts standpoint, over the years, I've found a good many of those snowflake cranksets sitting unused on dealer shelves over the years, but never found a three spoke pattern set.
My guess is that was the common or go to replacement. Also keep in mind that mid 50's and back, Triumph also used a chainring that spelled out TRIUMPH in the pattern.

If it were me, I'd save the alloy 54 hub for something older, they look cool but really weren't as strong as the steel hub shell models.
The lack of pump pegs, boxed Triumph logo, later style fork crown cap, say its after 1970 or so,
The old pedals say pre 1969.
I believe Triumph could have had Raleigh pattern rims from the factory but I don't recall ever seeing any on original bikes newer than the mid to late 50's.
A 50's era frame will also have the oil port on the BB shell.

What it all amounts to is that unless you find a serial number that someone can translate, likely on the seat lug or seat post, you may never know for sure what year it is. I've had dozens of Raleigh built off brands like that which proved basically impossible to figure the year or date. Its often just a matter of using what parts are at hand, be as period correct as possible and enjoy the bike.

If it were me, and you already have the Sun rims, I'd build it as you see fit, its not a super rare bike, and pretty much anything you change is reversible down the road.

For me, I only go to aluminum rims if I can't find any decent original rims to build. So far though I've always come up with either a good used wheel set or a clean enough set of rims to use.
If I had a spare set of Sun rims laying around, I'm sure I'd likely find a home for them on one of my bikes just to try a set, but I really like the look of chrome steel on my older bikes.
I reserve the Raleigh pattern rims for bikes I know came with them, but that's my preference and in most case a matter of saving the Westrick rims for the Raleigh branded bikes because I've always just found more Dunlop Endrick rims than anything else around here.

If neither of the rims are perfect, it makes sense to build a new wheelset.

From what I recall, I think 1954 was the beginning of Triumph being built by Raleigh, in Nottingham. So that hub under a Nottingham badge isn't completely out of place

Make sure your alloy AW hub has the correct spoke count for the Sun rims you have, I believe they made those in 32/40 and 36h versions. If they match, go for it.

(I have a 52 Schwinn Traveler with a 36h Alloy AW rear hub and back in the 90's. I also had a 1956 alloy hub (40H), with stainless Raleigh pattern (Westrick) rims and an original Dyno hub, on a Triumph 'Jack of Clubs' model, with drop bars and a brooks saddle. (It ended up being a casualty of a bad break up, a station wagon and the garage wall). All I have left from the latter bike is a damaged dynohub and rim from that bike hanging on the wall in the garage.

The BB threading will be Raleigh threaded.
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Old 07-30-21, 01:53 AM
  #24814  
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Originally Posted by oldspokes View Post
When I look at that bike I see what appears to be a plastic jockey wheel, which if original puts it after 1962.
I agree, the Snowflake crankset is usually older, but the three point style was also around in the late 50's, however, every 50's era Triumph I've seen had a Triumph only fork crown cap with a small T on each side.
I've also seen the snowflake pattern chainring on later bikes, but whether or not they were replaced or original is unclear. I don't put much weight on the style of the chainring other than the fact that I tend to see more with that ring in the early 60's models.
I also do not see any pump pegs, unless they are cut off, I believe the Triumph models lost the pegs in or around 1970/71 or so.
When a bike gets to be 50 or more years old, its hard to say what was original or not, only the selling dealer and the original owner can say for sure, and there's a good chance they're not here to tell use anymore.
From a replacement parts standpoint, over the years, I've found a good many of those snowflake cranksets sitting unused on dealer shelves over the years, but never found a three spoke pattern set.
My guess is that was the common or go to replacement. Also keep in mind that mid 50's and back, Triumph also used a chainring that spelled out TRIUMPH in the pattern.

If it were me, I'd save the alloy 54 hub for something older, they look cool but really weren't as strong as the steel hub shell models.
The lack of pump pegs, boxed Triumph logo, later style fork crown cap, say its after 1970 or so,
The old pedals say pre 1969.
I believe Triumph could have had Raleigh pattern rims from the factory but I don't recall ever seeing any on original bikes newer than the mid to late 50's.
A 50's era frame will also have the oil port on the BB shell.

What it all amounts to is that unless you find a serial number that someone can translate, likely on the seat lug or seat post, you may never know for sure what year it is. I've had dozens of Raleigh built off brands like that which proved basically impossible to figure the year or date. Its often just a matter of using what parts are at hand, be as period correct as possible and enjoy the bike.

If it were me, and you already have the Sun rims, I'd build it as you see fit, its not a super rare bike, and pretty much anything you change is reversible down the road.

For me, I only go to aluminum rims if I can't find any decent original rims to build. So far though I've always come up with either a good used wheel set or a clean enough set of rims to use.
If I had a spare set of Sun rims laying around, I'm sure I'd likely find a home for them on one of my bikes just to try a set, but I really like the look of chrome steel on my older bikes.
I reserve the Raleigh pattern rims for bikes I know came with them, but that's my preference and in most case a matter of saving the Westrick rims for the Raleigh branded bikes because I've always just found more Dunlop Endrick rims than anything else around here.

If neither of the rims are perfect, it makes sense to build a new wheelset.

From what I recall, I think 1954 was the beginning of Triumph being built by Raleigh, in Nottingham. So that hub under a Nottingham badge isn't completely out of place

Make sure your alloy AW hub has the correct spoke count for the Sun rims you have, I believe they made those in 32/40 and 36h versions. If they match, go for it.

(I have a 52 Schwinn Traveler with a 36h Alloy AW rear hub and back in the 90's. I also had a 1956 alloy hub (40H), with stainless Raleigh pattern (Westrick) rims and an original Dyno hub, on a Triumph 'Jack of Clubs' model, with drop bars and a brooks saddle. (It ended up being a casualty of a bad break up, a station wagon and the garage wall). All I have left from the latter bike is a damaged dynohub and rim from that bike hanging on the wall in the garage.

The BB threading will be Raleigh threaded.
man are you guys helpful. I like the cottered crank and I may get a press just to service this one.

I have built many wheels and have several aw hubs to choose from so something will surely work. I also run dynamo hubs on my bob Jackson and most of my other bikes. My real goal with the triumph is a reliable cross town bike that can do grocery runs. To that end I'll need lower gears. A top gear of 70 inches would be fine. I have some hills to deal with.

On a side note, the first good bike I regularly rode was an English 3 speed with 24" wheels. My grandfather and dad kept a stable of old bikes we 6 kids could ride. Always wanted to revisit that time.

The depth of knowledge on this site is really wonderful.
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Old 07-30-21, 07:11 AM
  #24815  
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Originally Posted by 52telecaster View Post
they will probably need a larger rear sprocket and the need to be close to the right size. If they fit they are great for tooling around the neighborhood.
Larger rear sprocket? You mean a gear with more teeth? Are you saying by default it will probably be too low a gear and too strenuous?
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Old 07-30-21, 10:22 AM
  #24816  
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Originally Posted by molleraj View Post
Larger rear sprocket? You mean a gear with more teeth? Are you saying by default it will probably be too low a gear and too strenuous?
almost everyone prefers a lower gear on them if you have any inclines.
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Old 07-30-21, 02:37 PM
  #24817  
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1035116 is the serial number I am seeing on my triumph....
if I'm not mistaken this would roughly indicate 1970. Sounds reasonable.

Last edited by 52telecaster; 07-30-21 at 02:49 PM.
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Old 07-30-21, 03:36 PM
  #24818  
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Came across this at a sale today. They say itís a 55. Asking $125. I wasnít looking for one, but seems like a fun bit of tinkering. Would you 3 speed lovers snap this up?

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Old 07-30-21, 04:13 PM
  #24819  
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
Came across this at a sale today. They say it’s a 55. Asking $125. I wasn’t looking for one, but seems like a fun bit of tinkering. Would you 3 speed lovers snap this up?
It could very well be a 55. White mudguards were found on many models around that time. The trigger and the rear hub will help zero in on it. IMO, that's in sweet condition and worth the asking, pending a test drive of course.
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Old 07-30-21, 04:19 PM
  #24820  
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
Came across this at a sale today. They say itís a 55. Asking $125. I wasnít looking for one, but seems like a fun bit of tinkering. Would you 3 speed lovers snap this up?

Around my way that wouldn't have any chance of selling at that price. I can't get that for a minty clean 3 speed men's model that's been stripped down and gone through with new tires.
I see ladies bikes as parts, thus they're worth the sum of their parts when you really need them, if they're in pristine condition.

I listed a 55 Sports right after Christmas last year, it as a tall frame, with a perfect wheel set, two new black wall tires, and a clean original Brooks saddle. I had it up for $150 and didn't get a single reply after two months.
I finally parts it out and sold the wheels, saddle, pump, bars, stem, and crankset on fleabay, I saved the tires for my own bike.
Along side it on CL I listed a rusty Sears three speed from the 60's, it was a lug frame, Austrian model but it had been kept outside for years. It was not rideable The rear hub was clean, and the cranks were decent, the rest was rusty.

It sold for my $100 asking price the following morning. The guy saw the Raleigh Sports when he picked up the Sears bike, asked how much, I told him $150, he said '"Too bad its not from Sears" and walked away from it.

I personally know a few dozen guys who are very into old English bikes, they each likely have a dozen or more bikes, a few have over 50 of them. I've never known any of them to pay more than $20 or $30 for any bike, but they'll spend ten times that for one part while trying to revive some old rusty mess of a bike that likely wouldn't sell here for a fraction of what they spent in parts.

I think its a matter of three speed bikes appealing to only folks that are primarily on a fixed income these days.
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Old 07-30-21, 04:28 PM
  #24821  
anotherbike
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Originally Posted by 2fat2fly View Post
I've been watching this bike all summer now, I didn't realize it was the same seller who was selling tires on CL here as well.
I went to pickup a pair of Michelin tires the other day for another bike and he had the Sports right there as well.
I was in my company car, so there was no way i was buying a bike on the spot, but I'm seriously thinking about going back and trying to make a deal on it.
The thing is by far the cleanest one of these I've ever seen in recent years, probably since they were still being sold new.
Its all original, right down to the tires, and even they don't feel bad. No rust, no dents, its not all scratched up, and its a 23" frame.
I remember looking at one just like it back then and not having the cash to buy one new back then.
I figured if i can get it for $200, I'd be doing pretty good considering its condition. If not, maybe I can get the seller to throw in a new set of tires for it.
I'll be back down that area in two weeks, I can take my personal car that day instead of a car from work. .
Not that I need another bike but I wouldn't mind having a really clean one in the garage.




https://southjersey.craigslist.org/b...346835436.html
I passed on one just like this at the fleamarket last week, they wanted $50 and said they'd take $40 but I just didn't have room for another bike and I doubt if I'd get away with keeping one in the house.
They said I was the first to ask about it. It wasn't quite as clean as the one here but it wasn't bad and it was rideable. (I took it for a quick test ride but I was there to buy some produce not another bicycle. I feel pretty confident it'll be there again this week, and next week as well unless they give it away.. For $10 I'd drag it home and part it out I suppose.
It used to be a place where people spent money, but now folks walk around with maybe a two or three dollars in their pockets looking for super deals. Most never buy anything.
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Old 07-30-21, 05:02 PM
  #24822  
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Originally Posted by molleraj View Post
Larger rear sprocket? You mean a gear with more teeth? Are you saying by default it will probably be too low a gear and too strenuous?
Too high and too strenuous (too hard to pedal). Yes, a larger rear sprocket than you have will reduce the pedaling effort in all gears. Most are in the 18T range and you can find Sturmey cogs up to 22T. I'm using a Shimano Nexus 24T that works just fine for me.
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Old 07-30-21, 05:53 PM
  #24823  
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Originally Posted by anotherbike View Post

I think its a matter of three speed bikes appealing to only folks that are primarily on a fixed income these days.
What I'm suggesting is that if the OP wanted to delve into a 3 speed as a project, that one is ripe. Sure, we've all found flocks of $25 Sports that are clapped out but a 50's model with quality chrome, little to no rust, pinstripes, decals intact and looking at the rear mudguard, you can see light reflecting off of the paint. It's a garage queen. Apart from the Schwinn grips, it's appears original and will outlast all of us. The fact that it won't sell to a largely uninformed public means nothing if you want a clean example of a quality bike.
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Old 07-30-21, 07:44 PM
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JacobLee 
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
What I'm suggesting is that if the OP wanted to delve into a 3 speed as a project, that one is ripe. Sure, we've all found flocks of $25 Sports that are clapped out but a 50's model with quality chrome, little to no rust, pinstripes, decals intact and looking at the rear mudguard, you can see light reflecting off of the paint. It's a garage queen. Apart from the Schwinn grips, it's appears original and will outlast all of us. The fact that it won't sell to a largely uninformed public means nothing if you want a clean example of a quality bike.
Thatís a great way to look at it. Well said. I drove by at the end of the day and it was still there. Maybe Iíll go by tomorrow and see if theyíll take less. I sort of want another Whitworth wrench anyways.
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Old 07-30-21, 08:18 PM
  #24825  
SirMike1983 
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Oh, it depends on the model at hand in terms of what kind of collector you'll get. I know a couple guys who will pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars to import whole groups of bikes from England because they have spotted a couple rare models. The people who collect 3-speeds run from yard sale bargainers all the way up to high-dollar collectors who focus on pre-war road and racing bikes. And on top of that you have collectors of early 3-speed and similar bikes. Veteran Cycle Club has many members as well, from people looking for cheap stuff right up to high-end collectors. "Takes all types", as they say.
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