Sunbeam (Tourist T1 1949?)


Retro Guru
This is my father-in-law’s old bike that he bought when he was 13. I was given the bike by his son who had it for 20 years in his garden shed and he had planned to restore it to a working condition but recently concluded that he wasn’t going to do anything with it. I had reservations as it was in a bad way but if the post, stem and bb would come out, then it had potential. Interestingly enough it has a 110mm rear drop out, 90mm front drop out on the forks, and takes a 26 x 1 3/8 wheel. Frame and forks weigh in around 4kg. Plan is to strip off the paint and see what condition it is in and go from there. I will keep it single speed (flip/flop hub) but not sure whether to try out 700c or to stick with the 26 x 1 3/8 size wheels which I have found on eBay with the correct hub width for a reasonable price.

All the bits came off okay with help from penetrating oil. The pedals are stuck in the cranks and will need work but I will probably go for a cotterless crank and bb. So far the forks have come up well after sandpaper rub down. Next will be working on the frame.


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Senior Retro Guru
The frame has a pre-war appearance, but the brakes are post war BSA. Not uncommon in the 40s for makers to use up anything they had.
1949 would be a fair guess, possibly a bit earlier.. Are the hubs and bracket set BSA?



Senior Retro Guru
Lovely, would be a shame to lose that chainwheel.

Heat is your friend, get the crank in a sturdy vice and a blowtorch on axle, get it red hot and dribble a bucket of water on it.

Do this a few times and then use a well fitting spanner.

You can also chop the axle down if you think you can get a decent socket on it.

jim haseltine

Old School Hero
As long as you have a solidly fixed vice the best method is to clamp the axle flats in the vice then put a big smooth-jawed adjustable spanner on the flats of the crank at the BB end. Nothing beat us using that method.


Retro Guru
Thanks guys for your comments and duly noted regarding tackling the pedals. I don’t have a sturdy vice but I may know a neighbour who can help out. The bb axle has Bayliss Wiley Made in England stamped on it. The hubs are rusty but I will see if I can get a name or marker stamp. From what I have read on line about Sunbeam in the 1940s, the company had frames left over from before the war and sold what they had post WW2, so you are probably correct in your assumption Keith. Again, a few models were on offer, one with rod brakes and the other with calipers plus different handlebars could be chosen. It would be interesting to know what the tube set is and I presume that it the frame and forks would have been hand built? I do like the cranks and it would be nice to use it but not sure if using a cotterpin bb would be worthwhile but I would keep them if I changed my mind in the future.
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