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Enfield Coventry Cross ??

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Enfield Coventry Cross ??

Old 07-23-11, 02:58 AM
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svton
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Enfield Coventry Cross ??

Hello all, trying to find a little information on these bicycles but not turning up an awful lot in my search. I've been passively watching for an English 3 speed that was mostly ready to go or may need a little TLC overall. Came across this bike today.

Head badge reads: Made by the Enfield cycle co. ltd. ******ch England. Has a cross symbol in red in the center with blue background and I can barely make out Covenant Cross that is above/below the cross.

Has a Sturmy Archer hub. Persons leather saddle is a bit beat but looks quite usable. Someone attached a basic wicker basket to the bars that contain a couple leather saddle pouches. One of them being a Brooks full of spanners.

Is this something I should be considering picking up? Is there a certain price range or ceiling I should have in mind? This is at an estate sale... whether it makes it to the third day and has it's price slashed is all up to chance. It looks quite original aside from tires from what I can make out. It's definately seen better days. Front fender is a little tweaked but should be able to be corrected. Could use a good cleaning, work on getting rid of some light surface rust, and should have a good re-grease of everything. Most worried about hardware stripping and being able to find replacement items if need be.

Thanks for looking and would love to hear any comments or suggestions. Just looking to bum around on this a little in the neighborhood that is great for lazy rides or just quick runs to the grocery store.
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Old 07-23-11, 05:32 AM
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Not so different from, and most likely manufactured by Raleigh. A good thing altogether, as Raleigh spares aren't hard to come by. Raleigh bikes are nice riders, ideal for your purpose. The rear hub, if original to the bike, will have a month/year stamped on it that will help to date the bicycle.
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Old 07-23-11, 07:04 AM
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I'm not sure Enfield was ever bought out by Raleigh....the motorcycle company was separate until around 1968 when Norton/Villiers/Triumph bought them. In any case, its an interest marque and would definitely suit your purpose.....I'd get it! Regardless of who made it parts were pretty standard and the unique bits are all there it appears...

Mark
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Old 07-23-11, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by svton View Post
Is this something I should be considering picking up? Is there a certain price range or ceiling I should have in mind?
Yes, most definitely. Consider it for $250, don't hesitate for too long $200, start kicking the tires and looking for flaws at $150, but if the price gets below $100 just give the nice man some money and go. The brooks bag full of tools is worth nearly that much by itself.

Seriously, I think non-Raleigh three speeds like this are a cut above Raleigh in terms of quality &c. The tubing tends to be a little lighter, and replacement parts are the standard threading rather than the Raleigh proprietary threading. And to me anyway, this looks like a very nice bike.

The head lugs don't look like Raleigh lugs to me, and if the headbadge says ******ch, England, then most likely it was not made at Nottingham. We'd need more photos to confirm that it's not a Raleigh, but I'd say the signs are good. And even if it is a Raleigh, well, that's not such a bad thing either!
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Old 07-23-11, 09:08 AM
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Interesting! Lots more to this than I first thought.
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Old 07-23-11, 10:47 AM
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They had it marked at $195 yesterday. I plan on swinging by in a bit again to see if it's still there with a pump and small toolkit in hand. Swing a leg over to give it a short shake down. Have to be extremely careful though as I just had my broken clavical plated/screwed less than two weeks ago. =(

Are there any specific photos that would help in identifying whether it's Raleigh or not? I'll be sure to take a look for a date on the hub.
Thanks for the info thus far !! Now that I've got a little fire in my belly the thing will likely be gone.

Stopped by and could see through the fence that it was still there so I tried to scurry through the house to get to it ASAP. Good news !! Was stopped and told everything was 50% off. Guess you can figure out where it is now. =)

When I get some time I'll get it cleaned up a little and snap some new pics.

Quick ride feels... mmmm okay. Wheels looks straight but front might be slightly out of round?? Will start with some new tubes and tires even though these highly distressed pieces are holding air thus far.

Cleaned up the hub... '55

Last edited by svton; 07-23-11 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 07-23-11, 01:12 PM
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Best single photo for identifying a Raleigh is the rear dropout. If the eyelet for the fenders is below the axle it's a Raleigh. If above, it isn't.

Congratulations, I hope we did not steer you wrong! I don't think we did.
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Old 07-23-11, 01:45 PM
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This sits directly behind where the axle is in the dropout. Maybe 1/4 - 1/2" from top of drop out slot. LH rear dropout has 71958 stamped into it.
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Old 07-23-11, 07:43 PM
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Like this? This is a Raleigh dropout. Photograph of a 1960 "Popular Special" step-through frame 3-speed.

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Old 07-23-11, 10:02 PM
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Don't think it's a Raleigh... Check here:
https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/wiki/Enfield_Cycle_Co

I'd buy it.
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Old 07-24-11, 11:03 AM
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I couldn't find anything about Royal Enfield bicycles on that page; just the motorcycles. Some of the English bicycle/motorcycle manufacturers separated into bicycle and motorcycle divisions that were sold off separately; Triumph bicycles became part of Raleigh even while Triumph Motorcycles remained independent. Others went together: Raleigh continued using the Norman name for both bicycles and Motorcycles after the Ashford factory closed.

There is/was a Royal Enfield bicycle at the Bike Exchange that was a strange steed. A kind of U-frame, non-folding, 24" wheels, I think it was made for an adult as a shopper-type bike. Late 70's by the look of it. I have never seen another like it, which is my point: had this been made by Raleigh, then the odds are good that the design would be familiar to me. The fact that I hadn't seen another suggests it came from a small independent factory. Alas I did not note any country of origin labeling; might be made in India or something.

___________________________________________________

Edit!

Oh, wait. Now I see this blog, complete with a photo of a Royal Enfield tricycle version of the bike I just described.



According to that, "When Royal Enfield went out of business in ******ch, England, in 1967 the name was sold to a bicycle maker in Birmingham. This probably explains why many Royal Enfield bicycles seen in the U.S. appear to be newer than 1967."

Which means Royal Enfield was never a Raleigh brand.

Last edited by rhm; 07-24-11 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 07-24-11, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
I couldn't find anything about Royal Enfield bicycles on that page; just the motorcycles.
There's general info about cycles in there. Scroll down--there are some pictures. This is from 1953:
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Old 07-24-11, 06:00 PM
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I've got some more pictures coming. But yes, the dropout eyelet is identical to the Raleigh you've posted. One bad note... and not sure how I overlooked this although I am admittedly not a crazed bike nut but should have caught it... the fork is bent in a twisted manner. It rides just fine up front but the riders RH side crown sits back further than the left. No idea if this can be fixed or not. Might have to find a replacement which would stink because it would not match the original, especially with the highly distraught gold pinstripe work.










Last edited by svton; 07-24-11 at 06:23 PM. Reason: photo's added
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Old 07-26-11, 08:45 AM
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Updates and questions

Ok, so looks like I need to get the fork issue sorted first and foremost before spending money elsewhere on this thing. Need to find someone who may be able to cold set it or recommend getting another fork. Beyond that the hub could use some work. Is there supposed to be some play when first pedaling before they actually kind of set into gear?? I've been able to play with the adjuster some and actually got it to go to all three gears just once. The upper part of the line that runs from the trigger below the top tube is a mess so there's no way to keep consistent tension on this line. I'm hoping the hub I can put something in (WD-40? others) to loosen it up a bit and then oil it up. Problem is I really don't know how much of each I should be doing. When I was playing around with the barrel adjuster I would have times that I would find what I would refer to as a false neutral... it would spin freely until I would adjust the trigger enough to have it catch gear. Any recommendations on this would be greatly appreciated as for are what to replace and adjustments. From what I gather... new cable, some type of cleaner then oil in the hub. I've heard 10 drops mentioned?? Hard to tell as I'm just searching through various threads.



My next biggest concern is getting a little brake action working. As mentioned the fronts are very grabby, though only initially. At first there was play withing the caliper arms... though found out quickly if you tighten them too much they have no spring return action. Getting them set to what seemed tight enough to still spring return they still have the grabbiness. The headset I had tightened up a bit enough to take if for a spin but I might need to tighten it up just a touch more still... might be adding to that very grabby feel. I think the front brake may also be slightly tweaked because of the fork.



I'd love to keep this thing as original as possible but I also need it to stop decently which means minimaly new Kool Stops. Worst case, a new wheelset from Harris with hub if things don't go well with what I have.... or if the hub turns out okay, having a "new" wheel built around that.



The headset and BB seem to feel okay. I'm sure a service wouldn't hurt as I should probably pull most things apart for cleaning anyway to try and remove the surface rust. Need to do some re-reading to find out what products have been recommended for this. The BB has an oil port. If it's feeling okay I could probably just add some drops of oil for the time being I'm assuming... leaving this towards the end up the freshening up. Again, any comments or suggestions are welcome and greatly appreciated.
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Old 07-26-11, 06:33 PM
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Couple of things - I would have sworn that Enfield was not part of Raleigh, but the photos sure look like a Raleigh to me: dropouts, the thimbles in the forks, etc.....perhaps that sale to a "bike maker in Birmingham" was a false lead!

On the fork: I am pretty sure that can be set right. For the bike to track ok like that the wheel must have been twisted sideways.....have you tried just twisting it back (I mean with the wheel on)?

For the gears, setup is important - small adjustments can make the SA hub hard to shift into various gears. Look up the myriad of threads on the interweb for adjustment....but the most important one is that the flat end of the indicator rod (that threads into the hub and has the chain on it) should just be emerging from the end of the axle when in 2nd gear position. Even a half thread in either direction can make things unpredictable.

Oh, and yes there is often quite a bit of rotation of the crank when you first start to pedal.

Brakes are also interesting to set up: I had the same issue with the ones on my Glider. Remember the bolt that passes all the way through both adjusts the tension on the caliper arms as well as holds everything on the bike. There are lots of threads on the interweb for adjusting them as well (start with Sheldon Brown's site), but in this case often centering needs to be done by banging the spring on the side you want to adjust rather than by loosening the bolt, centering the arms, and tightening....

I found I had to do quite a bit of adjustment on the headset to get things working smoothly and without shudder from the brakes. Also make sure the wheel is true, and replace the pads with something decent.

Good luck - keep the photos coming.

Mark
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Old 07-26-11, 07:42 PM
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I don't know the history, but it is perfectly possible that after closing their own factory and before selling the name to "a bike maker in Birmingham" Enfield had the bikes made by Raleigh. Huffy had theirs made by Raleigh, for a while, so there's no reason someone else couldn't do it. At any rate, yours is definitely made by Raleigh. Nothing wrong with that.

It does indeed look like your fork is bent. But if the bike rides okay, you don't have to fix it. If it just bothers you, I can understand; but really, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Bending steel repeatedly tends to weaken it; so if your fork works as is, you won't make it better by straightening it. But note: I just said "if" three times. The important word here is "if."

Your bike probably hasn't been ridden in a while. That being the case, the thing the hub needs most is some exercise. Put some air in the tires, put some oil (lots of it) in the hub, and try riding. Coast, pedal, coast, shift, coast, backpedal, shift, and so on. Put it through the paces. I wouldn't expect it to behave very well at first, but once everything inside is loosened up it will be fine.
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Old 07-27-11, 12:26 AM
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You seem to have purchased a bike that's a bit on the rare side, but common as far as design and parts availability. Best of all worlds! It is certainly a good looking specimen. Best of luck.
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Old 07-27-11, 01:31 PM
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Thanks for the feedback !! Trying to clean it up a little here and there. A lot of what looks like light surface rust is coming up with just a good wet microfiber towel and some moderate elbow grease. Hoping with a little product it will really clean up and maybe shine a little. =) I'll get the new cable for the hub, some new brake pads and see what I can do as far as getting the hub working a little better. The fork I'll just ride it some more and see how I feel about it. I love how laid back the riding experience is. It's a little jaloppy-ish now I think mainly to do with some lose bits and the crusty old tires but I can tell the inherent ride is great. Takes me back to riding all the old 3 speeds my grandparents had in their barn full of antiques as a kid. I notice where there are nicks in the paint, at least the ones that don't go down to bare metal, have a reddish tint. Is this a typical Raliegh thing? Kinda adds a nice added visual to it's battle scars. =)

Oh yeah, with the BB can I just add a little oil? There's a screw on the top side of the BB case where it looks like you'd add. I'm still trying to figure out what tires to go with too. A part of me wants the cream Delta Cruisers, another part wants straight black. Another likes the Deltas with the white/cream sidewall but the sidewall looks too new. Not sure what I'll do. Pretty much none of the LBS's have anything for it (worth while to me anyway) here and I was looking for something a little nicer than the Kenda like varieties. The nicer tires seem to have some supply issues going on at the moment too.
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Old 07-28-11, 06:32 AM
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For tires, look on ebay. A number of sellers have pretty decent nylon gumwall tires that go up to 85 psi and they sell them in a set, two tires, two tubes, and two rim strips, for one price. These are not deluxe tires, but they look fine and hold up well.

Sure, put some oil in the BB, it may rejuvenate the 50-year old grease a bit. Don't expect miracles, and don't put in so much that it starts leaking out, which will be messy. That oil port indicates a pretty old bike; early 60s I guess. It's a holdover from an earlier age when cyclists were irrationally concerned about the inefficiency of greased bearings.
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Old 07-29-11, 11:10 AM
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Still cleaning up here and there. I think the fenders misalignment is playing games with my perception when it comes to the fork. May not be bent nearly as much as I had thought. Pulled the chain off and gave it a good clean with kerosene which allowed me to get a better sense of the BB's condition. Definately could use some service ! That and the hub or at least the cog back there feels gummed up decently. When you pedal backwards it's enough to make the rear wheel spin back when off the ground.
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Old 07-29-11, 12:22 PM
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All of the above is not surprising.

If you feel up to a hub overhaul, go for it. It's kinda fun. You don't need special tools, though I have found a bench press vise is very helpful when working at the kitchen table. I also use the same bench press vise as a cotter press, which you kinda need for BB overhauls.
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Old 07-29-11, 01:44 PM
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The cotter part I guess is what concerns me most with the bb. You typically need a new cotter after getting the old out correct? Suppose I could give the hub a try. Trying to manage my time with a young toddler limits my time a bit. I also have a motorcycle I have to spend some time with to get back in order to hopefully race again the end of Sept... which is priority #1 of my hobbies. The hub for whatever reason looks daunting from the illustrations though probably not as bad as it may seem. I have no clue as far as the wear and tolerances for the parts but I'm sure I could get a little help here with use of photo's. =) While it's tempting to try it myself, it might be better use of my time to have it done by someone local and have the wheels trued at the same time.
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Old 07-29-11, 01:54 PM
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You don't need to replace the cotters if you get them out without destroying the threads. Just file them a tiny bit to remove any marks from being installed.
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