1968 Rudge Harvard

Discussion in 'Vintage Lightweight Bicycles' started by wrongway, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. #1 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    I have noticed this bike on craigslist and the price is going down and it's not far from me. I can't post a picture here so you might not be able to help. It looks like any ordinary 3 speed Rudge or Raleigh or.....but it has no fenders or chain guard. The chain ring is the 'Red Hand Of Ulster'. The bars are a drop bar with the shifter mounted under the right hand brake lever. It also has the extra brake levers on the tops. That's the part that throws me off. I would buy this and I suppose for $50 I wouldn't lose out, but I don't want to buy another cobbled up bike.
     
  2. #2 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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  3. #3 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    I live for the CABE

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    It's definitely a Rudge, although their frames look like sports models due to their distinctive 'aero' fork crowns; I have a 1910ish ladies model that has the same fork crown.
    I think those bars and brakes may be later additions, they look more '70's to me.
    A good guide to dating the rest of it should be the rear hub. If it's original. Sturmey Archer stamped a date of manufacture on their hubs, usually month/year.
    In the photos that rear hub is either covered in crud, or is a desirable (possibly close ratio) aluminium model.
    I don't think that saddle looks right either, sports models would have inevitably come with a Brooks.
    Nice basis for a good, usable project at that price.
    Good luck!
     
  4. #4 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Riding a '37 Colson Imperial

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  5. #5 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Notice the wingnuts on the front wheel? Someone sure went to some trouble to make it look real. He's at $35 for it and I'm sure it's worth that as a bike alone, but I could put the money toward parts for other bikes. I just don't think it's rare. However, I have had a hard time in the past finding drop bars that fit in an English stem. That might be worth the $35 right there! hmmm....
     
  6. #6 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Finally riding a big boys bike

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    If you've got storage space, you can't go wrong at that price. But on the other hand, there's an endless supply of project bikes.
     
  7. #7 Posted Jul 17, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    It's worth checking out if close to you. There's $50 worth of parts there, I would say. It's a big project. Look for broken stuff (looks like one pump boss at least is broken). The wing nuts on the front are a nice touch, though not entirely uncommon (a set of rear Sturmey Archer wingnuts on the back are worth their weight in gold to collectors). I'm intrigued by the chainring and cranks - looks fluted road type with an "H" chainring (but it's not a Hercules apparently?). Worth checking out at least.
     
  8. #8 Posted Jul 18, 2017

    I live for the CABE

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    O
    It's a classic Rudge chain ring, the archetypal 'hand' design is upside down in that photo, and not so easily discernible.
     
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  9. #9 Posted Jul 18, 2017

    I live for the CABE

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    Here are 2 examples of those distinctive Rudge fork crowns.
    1910's ladies 28" wheel model (with later front brake)..... WP_20170403_17_43_22_Pro.jpg

    1954 gents sports model, 26" wheel 3-speed..... WP_20170325_11_53_13_Pro.jpg

    One of my favourite fork crown shapes, surely admired by Signor Cinelli.
     
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  10. #10 Posted Jul 18, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    The 1950s slope shouldered type also was sold as Raleigh's "heavy duty" replacement fork for bikes that needed fork replacement and the owner wanted something heavier duty. I have one in my shed somewhere with Sir Walter Raleigh decal on it. I rode it for awhile before I fixed the original fork for one of my bikes. I do think it was stiffer and a bit stronger than the original thimble Raleigh.
     
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  11. #11 Posted Jul 21, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Ok, I talked myself into it. I'm going after it tomorrow. It's only 2 hours one way and $35. There's some pretty decent parts on there for that price! Does that rear hub look 'ribbed' as if it's a J.C. Higgins hub?
     
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  12. #12 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    I brought it home. I will put up some more photos later today or tomorrow. Nothing any more exciting. The downtube has 'Rudge Sports' on it and 'Rudge' on the seat post tube. It has a bottom bracket oiler. The hub is a J.C. Higgins. Serial number on bike is: '75476 AS'. Someone turned a casual bike into a Road Bike.
     
  13. #13 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    Still not bad. The oiler on the bottom bracket indicates an older frame. There is enough there for what it cost.
     
  14. #14 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Here's a few more photos. I'm not always the best at 'picture-taking'. I can see where the guy got the idea it was a 'Harvard HARVARD1.jpg HARVARD2.jpg HARVARD2.jpg HARVARD3.jpg HARVARD4.jpg
     
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  15. #15 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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  16. #16 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Maybe around 1949? There is a little threaded hole on the right side just behind the bottom bracket. Possibly for a chain guard?
    I just found a picture of the downtube decal on the Veteran-Cycle Club under 1948 Raleigh parts. So....I would think 1947-1948. Question is.....is it worth digging up parts to try and put it back the way it was or just use it as a parts bike? hmm.....
     
    #16 wrongway, Jul 24, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  17. #17 Posted Jul 24, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    Yes - mount for full chaincase and bolt. Late 40s or early 50s would have been my guess, so what you found sounds right. I would be inclined to build out of 40s-60s era Rudge parts, whatever is ballpark and affordable and matches. Rudge quality in those years was always fairly good. All 1940s parts will be hard and costly. I think if you are patient, it might work out.

     
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  18. #18 Posted Jul 25, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Am I correct in assuming that this was built before Raleigh took them over? I was thinking that the fluted cranks were a Previous Owner add-on, but now it looks like they are pictured in the catalogs. Also, the fork crown seems to have a much more pronounced point to them than does my '59 Rudge.
     
  19. #19 Posted Jul 25, 2017

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    Raleigh bought Rudge in 1943, so any prewar bike would be before Raleight bought Rudge.
    https://oldbike.wordpress.com/9-bicycle-history-nottingham/
     
  20. #20 Posted Jul 25, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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