I don't get the odd wheel sizes on my second hand bike


Retro Newbie
Thanks for the interest : I cannot guarantee to keep my tongue in my cheek all the time though (it is a long stretch)
Well I got the leather saddle off OK ( lightly embossed Wright or similar on the sides) . I must have put Neetsfoot oil on it all those years ago as it came out with the leather still good with just some light rust on small parts of the metal frame underneath .With the saddle out , I thought it should it should make working on the frame easier -and it did .At the bottom of the frame I got the Cotter pin nuts off but getting the pins out was harder : I split a couple of little blocks of wood trying to get these pins out so I will take my time on this bit .I put graphite oil down one pin and left it at that (I will read up on extracting cotter pins) . I want to grease up this part of the bike ,the pedal area , as it is something I have not ever done before but these Cotter pins will take some shifting.

A bit later : I knew the ball bearings were tricky but I did not know in what way they would catch me out . I did manage to get one cotter pin out . The other one remained stubborly unremovable . I unscrewed the fixed cup on the side with the cotter pin removed and tilted the frame to catch the ball bearings on that side . What I did not expect was for the other sides ballbearings to fall out on the other side because the bottom bracket was now unsecured one one side skewed and released side ball bearings on the top side . I retrieved 7 of them but I may have lost one or two and I still have to get the other cotter pin out on the other side . I need to figure out the ballbearing size and the correct number for each side .

Today 29 April I quickly got the other cotter pin out by using a much smaller hammer accurately rather than using a big one through a block of wood .Altogether I retrieved 10 ball bearings which would make sense as 5 each side . But I think I will order in a few more . I think they come in packets of 22 which could mean more are needed . The funny thing with this bottom bracket was that the lock ring was totally loose - yesterday when I unscrewed it by hand there was no need for any kind of spanner . I reckon the previous owner all those years ago had left it loose so he could "top up" and regrease "as and when" but this is just a guess , I really do not know . I certainly have not been in this area before .I think the ball bearings are quarter inch.

And today I saw a virtually identical bike is for sale on Ebay for £40.00 , so they are not worth much second hand . And I found out it is treated as a "boy's" bike with it's 21 inch frame (if they were all built with the same frame) . So it has been the sort of bike that parents do up for their kids ( why did I not know this?) .Well revisting my child hood is probably a good use for it - I had loads of fun making up bikes from scrap that was left lying around in the fields (in the days before they had proper municiple recycling centres)

And it appears my memory was a bit faulty about the country of origin of my 27 inch wheeled "racer bike" . I had wrongly associated it's country of origin with the Shimano gears it had on it . But it seems that Tensor Cyles were based in Darlington and some of the frames they used were made in West Germany . So it appears it was a product of an early "globalised supply chain" , with parts probably coming from a variety of places like the UK , Germany , Japan etc . They made "affordable racers" and I remember I bought it because it was very good value . I must try and find the manual .
Last edited: