Reader, Steve, has sent me some photos of his latest project.
“This started out as a 1976 Raleigh Superbe that had been stored in the basement for years by original owner. The Paint was excellent, tires rotted, rims rusted inside d pitted outside. Bought Sun rims & new tires but it just kept going.”
Trash or Treasure? You Decide!
A neighbour dropped off this rough Supercycle frame last night. I suspected that it was another Raleigh re-brand. The small Made in Canada sticker is the same as the one on my Canadian made (assembled?) Raleigh Superbe. The serial number, RN851730 decodes as R (Canada) N (October) 8 (1978).
Supercycle Gran Sport
I’ve probably finished up with this one for the time being.
Blog reader B. Smith has kindly shared some of his current projects with me.
The first attachment shows my ’71 Raleigh Superbe. This has become my “daily driver” I got out twice last week, and I’m thinkin of going again today. This mild weather has really been kind, if you dress for the wind. we ride out at Beaverdams next to the canal in Thorold.
I bought this one in a package deal last summer at the Brantford swap meet. I’ve sent you pics when it was ROUGH. In addition to having the original dyna-hub and lights working, I got some nice L.E.D. lights for Christmas. The coffee cup holder is still a little sketchy as to my NEED for it, but I’ve had it a while. the Schwalbe delta cruisers are the finishing touch for a nice ride. This one has a 20 tooth rear sprocket.
The second shot is my ’74 Glider I bought at the summer vintage swap meet, same package deal as the Superbe. Over the holidays, I was in the mood to get going on this project, so up it went on my Park Tools stand. I re-packed the dry headset and went through the guts of the Sturmey Archer AW rear hub. I graced her hub with a 22tooth sprocket.
The ’71 Superbe originally came with these funky green brake handle grips. I cleaned and tuned it, and gave all the chrome a good rub with fine steel wool and chrome polish on the nasty spots. There were lotsa nasties! The crank had the pedal arm welded to it in a previous life, so it got my spare Raleigh “Heron” style crank and block pedals. It came with the rear rack. I have one of those crank pin remover tools. That is the ONLY way to remove these cranks!
Attachment three: The green brake grips were orphans till I ran into a guy at the Toronto vintage swap meet who sold me the matching handle grips. I love these so much , I may slide the whole package onto my Superbe, but then, I’d just be riding another Glider, now, wouldn’t I?
Attachment four: The rear shot is with the ’70 and ’74 Gliders slumped up together. The ’74 had a trashed taillight, so I modernized it with a pixeo L.E.D., even though there’s a generator for the headlight.
I started riding the ’70 earlier this year, because I had built up this project when I finally got around to respoking the rear of the ’71 Superbe. I fit this girl with a 21 tooth sprocket. This Glider was originally a 40 spoker, and it is trashed. I just swapped the wheel assembly for something newer, and fit some crappy used gumwalls. I got flat after flat and swore something was in the tire, but the last tube I put in stayed up. It was one of those projects that I got to use up some spare parts, and keep busy in the evenings.
ANYWAY, I got to liking the way the Glider rode. The handlebars are more “North Road” shaped, and the Superbe’s are flat and straighter, identical to the ones YOU have…(which is what prompted me to type this LOL)
The smaller frame still seemed to fit me, and I felt “nimble” on the tighter dimensions. There’s not a lot of differences, really, and I’m six ft, 200 pounds, I like ’em both. Only a long ride would tell me if the larger frame was more suitable.
I’d be more impressed if I had some nice Panamerica tires to test on this lady.
Attachment five shows all three sisters lined up and posing like happy girls. Each one is a different shade of olive green, each one has a different rear sprocket, so the range is slightly changed on each. The tires are vastly different on each one, too. The “70 and ’71 are made in Nottingham, and the ’74 numbers check out as Canadian built. I can’t tell unless I decode the serial numbers. I feel the Quebec factory did a great job building these bikes for Raleigh.
The Tree Sisters…
Thanks B. Smith for the contribution and I encourage other readers to do likewise!
This one has become my main everyday bike. The saddle bags are very handy for visits to the grocery or beer store. The mattress saddle was badly split so it’s been replaced with an old Wright’s composite saddle. The paint is rough on this one so it’s a good working bike.
I’m not sure what bike these bars and stem came from originally. I bought them from George at Parts Unknown, but I quite like them.
Record breaking high temperatures here in Toronto have extended the riding season.
This 1972 Eatons Glider started off as a 3 speed but now sports a 1967/68 Torpedo 2 speed Kick Back hub with a coaster brake. I’ve added a caliper up front for safety.
I’ve inverted some shortened north road bars and a vintage Speedic saddle.
The tires are inexpensive Chao Yang brand from China supplied by George at Parkdale bikes.
All in all an interesting ride but I do prefer a 3 speed.
Jon A., the owner of the modified DL-1 has sent me some photos of a couple of other bikes in his collection. A very clean and correct 1973 Raleigh DL-1 and a 1970 model.
He’s also directed me to the Brothers Rich and the modified version of the DL that they make and sell known as the Charleston.
BrothersRich sells self-branded luxury items, leather goods, etc. The BrothersRich Charleston goes for around $1800 US, not cheap, but it’s essentially a new bike, because Paul Eric Rich hunts down straight DL-1s on their last legs, takes them completely apart, repaints them and puts all new components in them, including modern bottom brackets, headsets and Shimano hubs. His main competition is the Pashley Guvnor, also around $2000, but the Guv is a 26″ bike. I think probably most of those bikes spend their lives on display (kind of a shame IMHO).
Despite the fact that I had just told myself “no more bikes”, this one appeared on my neighbour’s lawn yesterday with a for sale sign. I paid full price, $40.00! It had several nice parts on it that have already been harvested and installed on my 1960 Norman.
There’s a small threaded lug behind the chain ring for attaching a full chain case.
- Below, a Raleigh Sports version of the same bike.
Jon A. writes:
Yet another bicycle purchase. A 1960 Norman 3 Speed with a AG Dynohub. Rough but workable. I didn’t pay much for it ($75.00 CDN), so I don’t mind spending a bit to get it back on the road. I spotted this one in the spring at a used clothing/stuff store. The original asking price was a whopping $350.00 but obviously, there were no takers. I offered $60.00 and we settled on $75.00.
I stripped the bike and repacked all the bearings. I gave the frame and forks a quick cleaning and sanding and spray painted mat black. Other than 55 years worth of dirt and grime it was in good shape.
I recently read that you can clean chrome with tin foil and water…. I can tell you that it really works!
These brake calipers came out looking almost brand new.
I was pleased to discover that the Dynohub still works!
George from Parts Unknown was able to supply some parts including this Hercules chainring and chainguard from an old Eatons Glider. He also let me use his cotter pin press. These cotters were the toughest ones I’ve ever encountered.
Pedals are MKS 3000 from West Side Cycle on Roncesvalles.
George at Parkdale Bicycle on Macdonell supplied a new chain and cotter pins.
So the work is mostly done for now. There’s still some fine tuning and adjustments to be done.
The bike has a 23″ frame, but due to the loose geometry, the stand over height is an inch lower that my newer (1973) Raleigh Superbe.
Total cost to date:
Bike purchase $75.00
Chainring/guard /press $40.00
MKS Pedals $30.00
New chain $10.00
New cables/pads/oil/supplies $10.00
Perhaps the arrival of this Norman in 1960 had something to do with their demise…
It turns out that this bike is indeed a Bridgestone Youngway.
The store that I bought it from decided to remove all of the lights and horns etc and threw them in the garbage!
Although I quite liked this bicycle It was too small for me so I gave it to a young woman I work with who will get more use out of it.
The bike below just showed up on Kijiji Toronto.
The same bike re-branded as a Supercycle for Canadian Tire.
Not a 3 speed but still an interesting bike. Year unknown (to me) but this bike has a lot of vintage accessories.
I’m not sure what this thing on the front wheel is….There’s a generator on the back wheel.
says it’s a wheel driven bell.
I found this one on another good Three Speed Blog
Jon, the builder of this custom Path Racer writes:
HEY! That’s MY path racer replica. I built it in my apartment while living in South Carolina. It’s based on a ’78 DL-1 Tourist frame, but I wanted to get an English ‘path bike vibe’ with the look. This frame geometry dates from the early 1900s, but it needed drop bars, no fenders and the elaborate brake linkage gone. To do that, I used a big-diameter 53-tooth Williams chainwheel with cottered Williams crank arms (someone suggested they might be from a British folder from the ’60’s), and ’60’s Raleigh rat-trap pedals. To clean up the overall look and get closer to a racer configuration, I had a Sturmey Archer SC-3 coaster hub laced into a DL-1 rear rim; both wheels had their rims bead-blasted and were powder-coated black. The front brake is a stock stirrup connected to a Raleigh accessory front lever, probably from the 1920’s or ’30’s. These components allowed me to build the bike without the traditional rod-brake set-up, which typically integrates with the handlebars. The shifter is a Sturmey Archer top bar unit, probably late-’20’s. Bars, when these photos were taken, were inverted Raleigh Sports bars on a Raleigh quill stem from the ’50’s, but I have changed over to a GB stem and shallow-drop moustache bars, probably from a postwar American fat-tire bike; I thought they had more of a “Lauterwasser” look.Â I bead-blasted the bars and added cork grips. Back then it had Schwalbe Delta Cruisers, but I swapped in a set of ivory Ralson (India) block-tread tires from Brothers Rich in Baltimore, as well as Woods valves with knurled caps and retainer chains. This bike gets compliments whenever I bring it to group rides; someone always asks “What year is that?”, and I reply that it depends on which part. they mean . As you can imagine, its not a great climber, but for an old crock it’s actually pretty fast- I sprinted through one of those ‘your speed’ radar speed limit signs last week and got up to 35 mph. Attached are some images of it in current state. It and my other DL-1s are on my Pinterest page ‘Big Brit Roadsters’