Vintage 3 Speed English Bicycles


Modified 1961 Superbe



As I’m no longer 25 years old, I’ve been thinking about gearing on these old bikes.

Delivered from the factory, they commonly had a 46T or 48T chain ring mated to an 18T rear cog. The gearing tends to be “tall” with third gear only being usable on level ground or downhill.  Swapping out the rear cog is a simple chore. Cogs are available in 18T, 19T, 20T, 21T and 22T.

The only drawback is that a bigger cog on the back will mean a new chain as well.

The bike above now has a 20T cog and a new chain.



12 responses

  1. Bazil Smith

    My 71 Superbe is geared like that.
    I’m really interested in trying a 21 tooth for hilly rides, like climbing the escarpment but I can usually make it on the 20t.

    August 25, 2017 at 9:28 am

    • It’s all about personal preference and riding style (and age….)

      August 25, 2017 at 9:43 am

  2. I’ve used a 23 tooth cog on my three speeds! I think the cog may be Shimano, but it still works.

    August 25, 2017 at 6:49 pm

    • 23 might be too much for me.I may switch it back to a 20.

      August 25, 2017 at 7:13 pm

      • Ah, to live in a flat place. 😉

        August 25, 2017 at 7:38 pm

      • Most of my rides are across the city and it is fairly level.

        August 25, 2017 at 7:40 pm

      • I know, I’ve been to Toronto!

        August 25, 2017 at 7:41 pm

      • And I’ve been out your way..
        I had pie and coffee at the Double R Diner…

        August 25, 2017 at 7:48 pm

      • I have no idea where that is…

        August 25, 2017 at 7:52 pm

      • The Twin Peaks Diner in North Bend.

        August 25, 2017 at 7:57 pm

      • Ah, you mean Twedes.😏 And that’s like three hours away.

        August 25, 2017 at 8:10 pm

  3. Damn fine coffee.

    August 26, 2017 at 8:30 am

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