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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 22, 2012 5:04 pm
Posts: 2
Hi,
My dad's old bike frame from the late 1930s/early 1940s has been languishing in the garden shed for a while. My brother rebuilt it in the 70s so most of the running gear (at least what's left on the bike) is not original. I last used it about 20 years ago but it needed a serious overhaul and I've never got around to it.
From the very faded decals (and my dad's remembrance) it is a 'Palace Special' which I think was made up for him by W S Hood cycles of Hammersmith and has Reynolds tubing (not sure whether HM or 531 though I think it's just late enough to be 531 having browsed for info.)
Does anyone out there know anything about this make and whether the frame is worth salvaging now. As far as I can make out the frame no. is B157
You can see some photos here http://www.flickr.com/photos/30235553@N08/

Thanks for your help.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 6:20 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:08 am
Posts: 6840
Location: Nth Somerset, UK
Welcome to the forum and what a grand old gentleman you have there 8)

There's plenty of knowledgeable folk here, so someone is bound to be able to shed a little light on your dad's bike.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 6:35 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:07 pm
Posts: 1321
Location: Cotswolds
From what I can see I think you have the date about right. It has an unusually long fork rake, perhaps 4 inches. This could be that the forks have sagged (I have seen some). The angles perhaps 73x70?.
It looks like the product of an "own transfer" supplier, not small handbuilt, but much better than their cheapest.
Unusual that the head bearings are the sort used in almost all general purpose bikes of the time apart from raleigh, with loose cheap bearing rings and 1/8 balls.
Club bikes of the time usually had a headclip, not expander bolt for the handlebar stem.
The bottom bracket is a casting, with a casting number, there might be an old trade catalogue showing these, but it would not help with the maker of the frame.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 9:41 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 22, 2012 5:04 pm
Posts: 2
Thanks for the replies. My suspicion about the head bearings and handlebar stem is that my brother may have replaced them when he was setting the bike up in the seventies. Would that make sense?
I guess it wouldn't be a surprise if the forks had sagged after clocking up the miles this probably has. When you say 'angles perhaps 73x70' which angles are those, please? And if they are sagged, are they realistically salvageable or would it have to have new forks?
Thanks


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:16 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:07 pm
Posts: 1321
Location: Cotswolds
The inserted cups in the head bearings are a type specific to the head lugs, and were probably used on 80% of UK bikes apart from Raleigh from about 1900 into the 1950's.
The forks may have been made as they are, but it looks an exceptionally long rake or offset particularly for a steep (for the time) head angle.
The angle between the seat tube and the top tube is the seat angle, approx 69 or 70degrees, and the head angle is 180 degrees minus the angle between the top tube and the head tube.
If you take a line through the steering head to the ground and compare with a vertical from the front hub, I would expect the vertical to be at least one inch further back, in motorcycles this was known as trail.
This is an opinion fron the look of the pictures, may not be correct.


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