1952 Dunelt

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Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Well I signed up for the Society of Three Speeds Three Speed October this year. Later that same day, I showed and sold my 3 spd Corvette to a guy who also took my Electra with the Nexus 3, and may come back for one of my pre-war bikes. As I was counting my cash, I realized “crap - I just sold my last two three speeds.” So I went to see what it would take to put an assembled Schwinn Speedster wheel into a Collegiate frame, while casually looking for another English light Roadster. And this is what I found. There is a lot wrong with it, but it’s straight, fairly complete, and can be ridden (although I have a few weeks to ready it).
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SirMike1983

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
That's a nice find. It's very old for a Dunelt in the US. They usually turn up as later bikes that were Raleigh-made. This is an older, Birmingham bike. It is set up a bit differently than the Raleigh-type, but you should be able to find the parts you need with some patience.
 

juvela

I live for the CABE
That's a nice find. It's very old for a Dunelt in the US. They usually turn up as later bikes that were Raleigh-made. This is an older, Birmingham bike. It is set up a bit differently than the Raleigh-type, but you should be able to find the parts you need with some patience.

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Thanks very much for this information SirMike.

So were Dunelts all Dunelt produced right up until the 1960 TI acquisition of RI?

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A Dunelt memory -

Made me first visit to the campus of Leland Stanford Junior University in Palo Alto California during 1970.

The campus proper is perfectly flat and quite large so even a one-speed is all a person really needs to get about.

Wherever there was an open space between campus buildings there were these old time wooden bike racks painted green which appeared to go back several decades. Each one looked like it could hold fifty to one hundred machines.

Wherever I looked it was wall-to-wall black Dunelt three-speeds with their white mudguard patches showing as they were all parked heading in to the rack. There were no other bikes to be seen. It almost looked like the university issued them to all incoming freshmen.

Next visit was about about two years later; "the boom" had hit in full force and it was an assortment of tenspeeds everywhere. Most of the Dunelts had disappeared.

Thanks for sharing this find. I got to learn a bit about the marque. ;)

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Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
That's a nice find. It's very old for a Dunelt in the US. They usually turn up as later bikes that were Raleigh-made. This is an older, Birmingham bike. It is set up a bit differently than the Raleigh-type, but you should be able to find the parts you need with some patience.
Thanks for that. I've certainly never seen a Dunelt of this vintage before. I had a blue '71 Dunelt (Raleigh Sports equivalent) which I took as partial trade - and that started my interest in the English bikes. I did grease the BB (there's a port) and the front hub, as well as oiled the rear hub. And then put a few miles on it. It will definitely make the Three Speed October challenge (although I might loose the first two gears if I don't address the fraying shift cable). My plan for the moment is to replace the shift cable, address the non working rear brake, replace all pads, true the rear wheel and replace rear tire, and try to find a more appropriate seat. In November I'll decide if I want to hang on to it - which at this point looks like a yes. If I do, I'll tear it down and address everything (has a bent right crank arm, incorrect left lever, incorrect front rim, wrong rear fender stays, bars are a little bent, and of course the cosmetics).
 
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Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
-----

Thanks very much for this information SirMike.

So were Dunelts all Dunelt produced right up until the 1960 TI acquisition of RI?

---

A Dunelt memory -

Made me first visit to the campus of Leland Stanford Junior University in Palo Alto California during 1970.

The campus proper is perfectly flat and quite large so even a one-speed is all a person really needs to get about.

Wherever there was an open space between campus buildings there were these old time wooden bike racks painted green which appeared to go back several decades. Each one looked like it could hold fifty to one hundred machines.

Wherever I looked it was wall-to-wall black Dunelt three-speeds with their white mudguard patches showing as they were all parked heading in to the rack. There were no other bikes to be seen. It almost looked like the university issued them to all incoming freshmen.

Next visit was about about two years later; "the boom" had hit in full force and it was an assortment of tenspeeds everywhere. Most of the Dunelts had disappeared.

Thanks for sharing this find. I got to learn a bit about the marque. ;)

-----
Thanks for that story. I read it once in another thread when researching my other Dunelt, but it's worth a re-read :).
 

Oilit

I live for the CABE
Interesting bike! Those fender stay attachments are unusual, that must have been an early type. And does anybody know the story behind the animal at the top of the badge? Is that supposed to be a bear?
 

juvela

I live for the CABE
Interesting bike! Those fender stay attachments are unusual, that must have been an early type. And does anybody know the story behind the animal at the top of the badge? Is that supposed to be a bear?

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I assumed the ursinic device to be a part of the Dunelt family coat-of-arms but was unable to locate an image of it.

Here is what heraldric experts have to say about them -

Bear_in_heraldry

Not all Dunelt head emblems exhibit it -

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There was also the Dunelt steel making enterprise located in Sheffield -


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Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Interesting bike! Those fender stay attachments are unusual, that must have been an early type. And does anybody know the story behind the animal at the top of the badge? Is that supposed to be a bear?
I’m thinking it’s going to be easier and quicker (and likely cheaper) to replicate the missing rear stays, rather than finding originals. Thankfully whomever replaced them left the brackets on the fender. And used the existing reflector hole to mount the replacement.
As far as the badge goes, all I know is that it’s about 100 times cooler than the badge on my ‘71 (which was nice in its own right. I paid $30 for the bike, so I probably did ok just on the badge alone :)
 

SirMike1983

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
You may be able to make a set. They're usually just a rod threaded at one end, with an eyelet for the frame mount at the other. You may just need to measure the length for the back and copy the design. They make threaded rod stock, though ideally you'd start with a smooth rod and run a die over the end. The other option is to try Ebay UK or Cycles of Yesteryear in Britain. You might find some in the US, but they're uncommon here compared to the later stuff.
 

juvela

I live for the CABE
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Dunelt in the U.S. advert of 1956 -

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Question for the experts -

have long wondered about the marques acquired by TI.

were there any which they bought up which were allowed to close?

were any which were allowed to close revived following the acquistion of RI? was Meteor perchance such a marque?

from a blog post -

"METEOR - WEST COAST CYCLE SUPPLY Co. (c. 1961-63)



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One of the consequences of Raleigh's takeover of Carlton was limiting sales of the marque to only appointed dealers in the Raleigh Industries of America network. Hitherto, high end machines such as this had been sold in small consignments or special order through specialty cycle shops. In pre "Bike Boom" America, California was the great nexus of the nascent racing bicycle market and where one found some of the country's best cycle shops like Hans Ohrt in Beverly Hills, Kemp's, John's Bike Shop (Pasedena), Mulrooney in (Paramount) and Lynch (Westwood). Charley Harding, whose family ran a large cycle shop in Cork, Ireland, emigrated to the U.S. and purchased the Lynch store which he renamed Westwood Cyclery. Most of these California shops got their high-end lightweights from West Coast Cycle Supply Co. (WCCSC) run by Howie Cohen who was an avid cyclist, collector and cycling advocate. He imported many of Britain and Europe's top marques like Falcon, Elswick Hooper, Jack Taylor, Alpina, Royal Scot, Olmo, Legnano and, before the Raleigh takeover, Carlton."



Since Raleigh Industries of America already had a west coast distributor, shops outside its dealer network were now cut-off from buying Carltons through WCCSC. It was one of the few regions in the country where the demand and number of dealers overtaxed the existing arrangement so in a perfect example of TI "branding", a solution was quickly found. One of TI's long dormant marques was the Meteor brand, originally made by Starley & Sutton of Coventry and dating to the late 1880s. It was arranged for WCCSC to import Carltons badged as Meteors, but otherwise identical to the stock machines sold as Carltons. As with Raleigh initially, the model used would be the Franco-Suisse and it was decalled as such and sold as a complete machine with Campagnolo components."


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curious as to the Drake badge. all examples encountered thus far have been RI produced. have seen three or four three-speeds and one tenspeed. does anyone have knowledge of pre-RI Drake badged cycles?

thanks very much for any information. ;)

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jimbo53

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Very nice bike! Love the pierced name chain ring. If you decide to fabricate your rear fender stay, I've used this K&S Engineering mini wire bender to make eyelets. It's designed for the R/C airplane hobby for fabbing control arms, landing gear, etc. Easy to use and affordable. I've had mine for years and it's come in really handy for a lot or needs.
http://www.flyhobbies.com/kandsminiwirebender.htm

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Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Very nice bike! Love the pierced name chain ring. If you decide to fabricate your rear fender stay, I've used this K&S Engineering mini wire bender to make eyelets. It's designed for the R/C airplane hobby for fabbing control arms, landing gear, etc. Easy to use and affordable. I've had mine for years and it's come in really handy for a lot or needs.
http://www.flyhobbies.com/kandsminiwirebender.htm

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Thanks for the heads up on that tool. I hadn’t thought that far ahead :) my only thought is to make this thing cool and reliable, and get through Three Speed October.
 

Blackbomber

Wore out three sets of tires already!
I may as well show an updated photo. Ignore the saddle - it’s a placeholder that doesn’t cut off circulation to the private bits like the Messenger it came with. And feel free to criticize the cockpit arrangement, but it is going to change.
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