Wednesday, August 08, 2007
Raleigh and Sturmey-Archer
The second to last long weekend has come and gone. I rode Geoffrey's bike several times, and though it often wasn't pretty, I made it up every one of the hills that my route takes me along. I was riding with no hands at one point adjusting my sunglasses and promptly sailed into the ditch and the bush, but both the bike and I survived.
I pulled my Dad's old Raleigh out from behind the furnace in the basement to take a picture of it. Dad thinks it is a classic but I'm not so sure he could get more than $150.00 or so for it. That's what most of the bikes from this era seem to go for on Craigslist.
Dad figures it is from about 1970. It's a three-speed with Sturmey-Archer gearing and hub. It still works great, but wow, it is so weird to ride a bike like that. Your posture is SO upright, and with the handlebars coming towards you, I kind of felt like I was steering a kitchen chair around.
My Dad incidentally is not a cyclist, despite what these pictures might imply. He probably has cycled about 5 km in the last 25 years.
P.S. if you are a bike history nut, and want to read about Raleigh, try this article.