1970s? 3speed huffy monarch

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Markopollo

On Training Wheels
Hi there! Completely new to the whole vintage bike thing.

Recently picked up this bike at a garage sale, tried looking online for info but couldn't find anything. I was told its a 1976 but Im not sure.

Any ideas? Has a shimano 3speed internal geared hub, says 3j on it. Looked up the patient and it said it was invented in 1959/60 and expired in 72.

Love this bike, rides really smoothly.

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So, any ideas or info on this thing?

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bloo

Finally riding a big boys bike
So, any ideas or info on this thing?

That's your serial number. Assuming it was made in the 70s, "HC" probably means it was made by Huffy in Celina, Ohio.

Look for more numbers on the dropouts (next to the rear axle). You might find two stampings, one of which is a date code. Post back what you find. We might be able to confirm or refute 1976. Beyond that, I don't know much about it.
 

Oilit

I live for the CABE
During the '50's and early '60's Huffy imported lightweights from Raleigh, but yours looks American built, so no earlier than the late '60's. It looks to be in good shape.
 

sykerocker

Look Ma, No Hands!
Looking at the decals, I'm guessing late '60's/early '70's. The bike doesn't have that BMA/6 (ok, I'm going from memory, although I know I'm close) that all Bike Boom era American bikes, except Schwinn who refused to be seen with the competition, had. It was something to do with "safety" and "quality" and was a sop to the realization that no American manufacturer was making bikes as good as Schwinn by that point. That sticker came out of the Bike Boom and the consumer movement, and was definitely on all non-Schwinn American bikes by 1974.

It's definitely a department store bike, in really nice shape and rare in that condition. Most of those bikes were beaten to death by kids within two years of purchase. That rear hub is the Shimano 3t, a low buck, but good quality, alternative to the Sturmey-Archer. The owner of the shop where I worked at back then liked them better than S-A's because they were easier to tear down. They were, but it's been so many decades since I last worked on one that I wouldn't dare without a manual in front of me now.

Nice find. Shows that the low-buck marketplace had some fairly nice bikes back then.
 

jimbo53

I live for the CABE
Very nice bike to enter the vintage bicycle hobby. Be sure to ride it a lot to appreciate the ride quality of these basically Brit roadster spec bikes, that unfortunately we’re just getting some traction in the US market when the derailleur ten speeds really took over. If these internal 3 speeds are your cup of tea, keep an eye out and you’ll be surprised what shows up in Craigslist, FB Marketplace and local yard sales and flea markets. Most people are pretty ignorant on this segment of the collectible market and great bargains can be found. Welcome to the CABE and be sure to share what you find!
 

sykerocker

Look Ma, No Hands!
Little-known secret of the Bike Boom: 95% of the people who bought 10-speed "racers" would have been much better off with a 3-speed roadster, seeing most of them got their total riding in after dinner around the neighborhood, maybe 2-3 miles per evening. Unfortunately, these kind of bikes weren't fashionable at the time.

Back then, I worked for a Schwinn/Raleigh/Columbia dealer who wasn't impressed at all with derailleur bikes, but a firm believer in the English 3-speed roadster, especially the rod braked models. Lord knows we tried to sell those bikes (we had no trouble getting them from the manufacturers), but the buying public wasn't having it. If it didn't have 10-speeds, drop bars, and a narrow saddle (which most of them complained about 30 days later), the public wasn't interested.

Often makes me wonder how many would have continued riding once the Boom was over, had they bought a bike that actually suited their daily riding needs.
 

SirMike1983

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
By the late 1960s and into the 1970s, the standard Raleigh Sports was a step up from the basic Schwinn 3-speed and two steps up from the department store economy models. That goes in general, and when the bikes were new, but it does not account for individual bikes we find today being in better or worse condition. A nice, functioning department store economy 3-speed is better than a bent or broken Raleigh Sports or even a Superbe. The department store economy 3-speeds certainly have their flaws, but it all sort of washes away if the bike is very well preserved and everything is working well. They're perfectly usable bikes. If you enjoy that bike, consider branching out into other brands and seeing what you find. A nice, 1970s era Raleigh Sports might be enjoyable for you.

I agree with the above about 10 versus 3 speeds. Raleigh didn't do itself any favors by running gearing at stock 48-18 or 46-18. The average rider should be on something like a 48-22 or so (and I enjoy 46-22 on one of my Sports even). The gearing with the AW was too high with that 18 tooth cog for casual riders. Ironically enough a basic 10-speed today isn't very valuable but a complete and original rod brake DL-1 is worth good money.
 

Blitzie

On Training Wheels
Looking at the decals, I'm guessing late '60's/early '70's. The bike doesn't have that BMA/6 (ok, I'm going from memory, although I know I'm close) that all Bike Boom era American bikes, except Schwinn who refused to be seen with the competition, had. It was something to do with "safety" and "quality" and was a sop to the realization that no American manufacturer was making bikes as good as Schwinn by that point. That sticker came out of the Bike Boom and the consumer movement, and was definitely on all non-Schwinn American bikes by 1974.

It's definitely a department store bike, in really nice shape and rare in that condition. Most of those bikes were beaten to death by kids within two years of purchase. That rear hub is the Shimano 3t, a low buck, but good quality, alternative to the Sturmey-Archer. The owner of the shop where I worked at back then liked them better than S-A's because they were easier to tear down. They were, but it's been so many decades since I last worked on one that I wouldn't dare without a manual in front of me now.

Nice find. Shows that the low-buck marketplace had some fairly nice bikes back then.
What is proper way to lubricate the Shimano 3t on my '72 Huffy Sportsman. Also a looker. Just got it a couple weeks ago. I like old bikes. Came already cleaned up.

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sykerocker

Look Ma, No Hands!
Lubrication? In all honestly, we never did at the shop when they were new. The Shimano had two advantages over the Sturmey Archer AW back in the day: They were way less maintenance intensive (as in maintenance, what maintenance? other than ensuring the cable was properly adjusted), and if you did have to tear into one it was much easier than the Sturmey.
 
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