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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 3:40 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:34 pm
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Location: Stockport, UK
I guess here is the best place to put this. Raleigh Twenties certainly weren't for offroad use, so they're not a BMX or an MTB. They were intended for use on roads, so I reckon that makes them road bikes! :)

This all started with an idea last autumn. It was looking like another windy winter, which I just can't be bothered with on a 16 mile commute. That meant having to use the sodding trains, and waiting around a lot for them. The previous year, I'd tried taking my bike on the train, so I could cycle to the station and get an earlier train, but when it got crowded I'd often find myself unable to get on. :|

The solution? A folding bike! Decent folders were expensive, though, and cheap folders were crappy and embarrassing. That's if it was cheap and modern-ish. There was a crappy option that was cheap but quirky enough to not be embarrassing, and everyone's favourite bike tinkerer was a big fan of them: a Raleigh Twenty!

So, I ended up with this:
Attachment:
File comment: Triumph Traffic Master AKA Raleigh Twenty
$(KGrHqVHJBUFHyHTkOkEBSDTikyusQ~~60_12.JPG
$(KGrHqVHJBUFHyHTkOkEBSDTikyusQ~~60_12.JPG [ 39.71 KiB | Viewed 2457 times ]


Which soon became this:
Image

The plan was simple: fit BMX-sized wheels, put on a good seat, and upgrade the headset. I expected obstacles, and it's a good job I did - there were many! :P

First off was the wheels. After much pondering, I decided I wanted to try out mags! I'd never seen it done on a Twenty before, and I reckoned it would be a good way of distancing it from it's granny bike image. A bonus of this was that there was a set on ebay that had a coaster brake, which'd save worrying about brake reach on the rear.

Image

Notice that the front wheel isn't in position? That's because it was too wide to fit in the standard fork, and it was still too wide with the fork stretched, due to the rather bulbous hubs. That meant a new fork, which meant losing the ability to quickly drop the handlebars for folding. Botheration!

Happily, there was a seller of 20" forks with ludicrously long steerers on ebay, and so I bought one and solved the issue of front brake reach at the same time. The next thing to do was to sort out the headset, which I'd foolishly bought before finding out that the fork needed replacing - a Tange DX8 threadless, due to threadless headsets working best with the original fork. I thought it'd be okay with the locknuts from the old fork, forgetting that the old fork was a Raleigh, and had non-standard threading. :facepalm: Fortunately, I had an old non-Raleigh racer hiding under the stairs, so I pinched the locknuts from that.

The next issue was the steerer length. It was now too high, and needed spacers. I opted for a BMX seatpost clamp, as it'd be able to act as a semi locknut. Not sure if that was a good idea, but it hasn't failed yet!

Image
(the photo was taken just after I'd fitted it, hence it being incredibly loose!)

The new fork meant the old stem wouldn't work, so I had to buy a new long one. An Oxford something-or-other. It was a piece of crap, with a badly formed clamp that wouldn't grip onto the handlebar properly. I tried all sorts of DIY shims before giving up and replacing it with a BMX stem, along with a BMX handlebar to boost the height. I haven't got a photo of the new stem and handlebar yet, so see how bad it was:

Image

Thankfully, the seatpost was simple, although I replaced the seatpost clamp with another BMX clamp, as the original clamp didn't work too well with the shim I was using.

And now, the pics of the (almost) finished bike:
Image

Not very small when folded, but it does at least fulfil the 'folding bike' technicality for getting it onto public transport. :D
Image

Obligatory drive side view:
Image

Lots of photos in this flickr set!

I'll stick up some up-to-date photos soon-ish, although there's not a huge difference.

The bike rides really nicely over short distances, and is perfect for stop/start inner city traffic situations. Powering out of lights past the groups of roadies and hybrids, who have all pushed in front because I'm only on a shopper, never stops being fun, although it gets quickly embarrassing on long stretches. Thankfully, that hardly ever happens! :D


Last edited by spatuluk on Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 12:14 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 06, 2013 2:47 pm
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Location: Liverpool
It's madness, madness I tell you! ;) Mind you, the end result is oddly cool!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 10:39 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 8:42 pm
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Location: Warrington
Haha, I like it.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:45 am
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Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Back in the day, about 1983/4, when my mates were all riding Raleigh Burners and I was on my BH Mag, one of my mates sisters was riding a Raleigh Safari - a metallic beige with slight zebra trim. I always remember trying to do endos and back hops on it and it took as much as I could give it! I've always wanted to see if I could spruce up an old Shopper instead of nipping to the shops on my road bike.

You give me inspiration sir! A tremendous effort!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 4:33 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:34 pm
Posts: 264
Location: Stockport, UK
I've never owned a BMX, but always wanted one BITD. This is probably as close as I'll ever get to riding one! :P

I never even considered attempting tricks on it - it weighs a metric ton! :shock:


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 5:45 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 20, 2011 5:59 pm
Posts: 726
Location: West Yorkshire
good effort that!

It's great fun racing on a shopper :lol:


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 11:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 3:58 am
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I don't understand why you're proud. You've just made it worse.

What possible utility does this serve that the standard one didn't?


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21, 2014 1:21 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:34 pm
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Location: Stockport, UK
I can ride it without dying inside.

Standard twenties are fine, but why stick to their ancient styling when I don't have to? It's not like they're rare and must be preserved.


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 21, 2014 1:35 am 
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No, but you will die when those cheapo fake Tuffs snap. As for ancient styling... You know you're on retrobike, right? I mean it says so and everything. On the screen.

Either way, this isn't a styling improvement, it sort of looks like a bunch of random bits that weren't meant to go on the same kind of bikes. Which it is.

It reminds me of those people who buy those rubbish PT Cruisers and glue loads of tacky fake chrome and fake porthole exhausts all over it.

Folding bike version of pengy.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21, 2014 8:21 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2011 10:00 pm
Posts: 477
Location: Ely. UK
Very ingenious and very well done :-)


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