I happened to be pedaling past a friend's house at the very moment her boyfriend wheeled this 1977 Raleigh Sports to the curb for trash pickup. My friend had bought a new bike and was getting rid of this old one, which someone had given her and which she had never had the energy to fix up. I took the bike home and treated it to a bath, some rust removal and touchup paint, a new set of tires, and a Brooks B67 that came from my dismantled Raleigh Tourist.

Test riding the Raleigh Sports, I discovered a periodic clunk inside the chain guard which I couldn't figure out. My local mechanic said he suspected the rear sprocket was installed backwards. The sprocket is dished; so if it's installed wrong, the rear sprocket and front chainring will be out of alignment, causing the chain to hang onto a front tooth too long and pop off with a clunk against the chainguard. I removed the rear wheel, popped the circlip, reversed the rear sprocket, buttoned everything back up, and Voila! Smooth pedaling and shifting with the traditional Sturmey-Archer 3-speed thumb shifter.

The only drawback of the bike is that it's too small for me; however, it makes a great guest bicycle when friends visit from out of town. I lead them on a guided tour through Old Covington past the house where I found the bike. The friend who gave it to me comes down from her porch to admire the refurbished Raleigh and says she's glad I fixed it up.

Eric Nye
Covington, La.



Raleigh Sports - side view


Raleigh Sports - headset detail

Raleigh Sports - chainring and guard


Raleigh Sports - fender and fork crown
Raleigh Sports - side angle above


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