Raleigh Twenty Rat project.

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Greetings all

My latest project, a 1970's Raleigh Twenty, I'm not sure of the year? anyone know? I have seen interesting things being done to them, so I got this one off flea bay for £35 quid. It was in pretty good nick with a bit of patina. I have always liked smaller bikes and the ease of storage, also the the green colour so I decide to opt for this particular bike. Prior to this I bought an expensive minty 1980 Mongoose BMX, which is great but not suited for my intended use, as below.

I’ll cobble it together to fulfil the role of a commuter/errand/cruiser/everyday use bike, with a rat look, probably something like the last photo (credit to whoever owns that). A bike I could leave outside a shop/library/off-license etc and it not get nicked.


Off with original wheels and perished tyres. Ordered some BMX wheels, tyres and tubes. A 17T freewheel and chain to go to the 46T Raleigh Chain ring (Complete with Herons) It should give me a nice gear ratio. So off with the 3-speed Sturmey Archer. I’m keeping the grip shifter on as I think it looks great.

The kickstand will stay on, as its functional and sturdy. Mudguards removed. The carrier rack will be staying for cargo functionality with groceries etc and or when riding to the skatepark on it with board, pads and helmet etc.

The stock pedals are a bit creaky and will probably be replaced with something functional and hard-wearing. Probably platform types.
Original saddle to be kept for the time being.
I'll re-attached the old chain guard too.

Because of the height reduction from 451 wheels to standard BMX (405mm) I will have to be careful cornering, though not a problem as I have always habitually keep them level when going around corners.

I 'tickled' the drop-out's with a metal file to accommodate the 10mm BMX wheel axles.

Noticed when taking a photo that it's stamped Made in Germany? Thought all old Raleighs were made in UK? Obviously not.
At the mo, I'm giving it a clean. W Removing some chrome pitting with WD4- and kitchen foil. I'll probably clear cote the 'patina'.

Finally, the most important bit of the build left to the last- It will be decorated with random stickers! I have an idea for a theme.

Thanks for looking, Stay Tuned.
 

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Greetings all

My latest project, a 1970's Raleigh Twenty, I'm not sure of the year? anyone know? I have seen interesting things being done to them, so I got this one off flea bay for £35 quid. It was in pretty good nick with a bit of patina. I have always liked smaller bikes and the ease of storage, also the the green colour so I decide to opt for this particular bike. Prior to this I bought an expensive minty 1980 Mongoose BMX, which is great but not suited for my intended use, as below.

I’ll cobble it together to fulfil the role of a commuter/errand/cruiser/everyday use bike, with a rat look, probably something like the last photo (credit to whoever owns that). A bike I could leave outside a shop/library/off-license etc and it not get nicked.


Off with original wheels and perished tyres. Ordered some BMX wheels, tyres and tubes. A 17T freewheel and chain to go to the 46T Raleigh Chain ring (Complete with Herons) It should give me a nice gear ratio. So off with the 3-speed Sturmey Archer. I’m keeping the grip shifter on as I think it looks great.

The kickstand will stay on, as its functional and sturdy. Mudguards removed. The carrier rack will be staying for cargo functionality with groceries etc and or when riding to the skatepark on it with board, pads and helmet etc.

The stock pedals are a bit creaky and will probably be replaced with something functional and hard-wearing. Probably platform types.
Original saddle to be kept for the time being.
I'll re-attached the old chain guard too.

Because of the height reduction from 451 wheels to standard BMX (405mm) I will have to be careful cornering, though not a problem as I have always habitually keep them level when going around corners.

I 'tickled' the drop-out's with a metal file to accommodate the 10mm BMX wheel axles.

Noticed when taking a photo that it's stamped Made in Germany? Thought all old Raleighs were made in UK? Obviously not.
At the mo, I'm giving it a clean. W Removing some chrome pitting with WD4- and kitchen foil. I'll probably clear cote the 'patina'.

Finally, the most important bit of the build left to the last- It will be decorated with random stickers! I have an idea for a theme.

Thanks for looking, Stay Tuned.
the 20 is the coolest small wheel production bike I reckon, here in NZ they were manufactured under licence from raleigh ours didn't have the down tube support strut (which I think looks cooler) they had the SA 3 speed or the rarer 2 speed kick back hub which is made of unobtainium these days, you can get a cheap one only if the planets are aligned and it is your destiny otherwise your looking maybe at $120 upwards for an average to good one, but sometimes you get a clown like the one that was trying to sell 4 or 5 really badly rusted ones for $200 each claiming that they are very rare, in a sense he is correct geographically speaking but not worth it when I personally estimate a close to NOS one would be got for $300 to $450
I'm watching this build for sure,you could go all out and take inspiration from my "metrorat No.22" build
 
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The SA hub will have a two digit date code on the shell, 74 for 1974.
The original brakes might not reach down to the smaller rims, but you can get a set that's lighter that does reach.
I calculated your gear index with a 20 x 1.75 tire, it's about 53, fairly low. A regular one speed index is around mid 60's. You might want a 14 or 15 to get a little more speed.
Sheldon Brown modified a Raleigh 20 to be light and fast.
1654301183509.png

 
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The SA hub will have a two digit date code on the shell, 74 for 1974.
The original brakes might not reach down to the smaller rims, but you can get a set that's lighter that does reach.
I calculated your gear index with a 20 x 1.75 tire, it's about 53, fairly low. A regular one speed index is around mid 60's. You might want a 14 or 15 to get a little more speed.
Sheldon Brown modified a Raleigh 20 to be light and fast.
View attachment 195589
Hi Thank You very much for the info :)

I'll check the hub for a date later. The gear ratio i’m happy with, I have a Mongoose Motomag (long story) that came with a 44-18 which was a ratio of 44.88. Way too low. I changed to a 16T and get 55 ratio, so 53 will do me nicely, though if I see a Sturmey Archer 16T free wheel i'll maybe put that on. I really think SA make excellent quality parts. I had a raleigh striker as a kid and that had a SA coaster on it.
This is really more of an assemble than build. Currently I'm sat waiting for parts, though the time should be spent cleaning the chrome with WD40 and tinfoil. Probably shorten the rear brake cable, no idea why it's sooooooo long?
Not sure about the brake reach? Reckon I can use the old one, but I have a few around from other bikes. Wait and see.

Sheldon Brown does indeed have a great page of resources for these bikes. There is just something about them? I used to be on Instagram and there are hundreds of Twenty's on there, they do have a following. Some even made into fixes! These bikes are fairly cheap over here, though they do seem to be creeping up in price. I think most over look the potential these small bikes have. I've always liked smaller bikes- BMX, commuter bikes and even scooters such as vespas and lambrettas and the things people do to those. Also the aesthetics of NYC courier bikes and the simplicity of a single speed.
I'm drawing on inspiration from the above and travel, art, functionality and most important. Fun!, It's going to be quite a personal bike, not being built for others, just me. An art bike.

I was looking at your Metro Rat 22 build, now that is an inspiring build. I'm keeping an eye on it.

Have an idea for a theme, an odd one but I like it. Stickers mainly, lots of them!

best regards

b2.jpg
b1.jpg
 
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Green bikes are faster. I always wanted to graft in an extra few inches at the joint and put on a longer fork. No Chop Required choppa
It's true, green is faster. But you don't see many green bikes? Except military ones in camo! ;) Or maybe you dont see them?
There's some weird superstitious stuff around green cars, I reckon the lack of green bikes comes from this (at the risk of going off topic)


cheers
 

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It's true, green is faster. But you don't see many green bikes? Except military ones in camo! ;) Or maybe you dont see them?
There's some weird superstitious stuff around green cars, I reckon the lack of green bikes comes from this (at the risk of going off topic)


cheers
 
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Hub says 69 3! Wow, it's older than me, I was born in 1970. I'm 51 now, but I'm still a child and I reject modern living.
It's why I like old bikes, skateboards, comics, cartoons, cars, tv-shows, music and most from that era!
You just nearly discribed me but I'm one year younger
 
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Hi Thank You very much for the info :)

I'll check the hub for a date later. The gear ratio i’m happy with, I have a Mongoose Motomag (long story) that came with a 44-18 which was a ratio of 44.88. Way too low. I changed to a 16T and get 55 ratio, so 53 will do me nicely, though if I see a Sturmey Archer 16T free wheel i'll maybe put that on. I really think SA make excellent quality parts. I had a raleigh striker as a kid and that had a SA coaster on it.
This is really more of an assemble than build. Currently I'm sat waiting for parts, though the time should be spent cleaning the chrome with WD40 and tinfoil. Probably shorten the rear brake cable, no idea why it's sooooooo long?
Not sure about the brake reach? Reckon I can use the old one, but I have a few around from other bikes. Wait and see.

Sheldon Brown does indeed have a great page of resources for these bikes. There is just something about them? I used to be on Instagram and there are hundreds of Twenty's on there, they do have a following. Some even made into fixes! These bikes are fairly cheap over here, though they do seem to be creeping up in price. I think most over look the potential these small bikes have. I've always liked smaller bikes- BMX, commuter bikes and even scooters such as vespas and lambrettas and the things people do to those. Also the aesthetics of NYC courier bikes and the simplicity of a single speed.
I'm drawing on inspiration from the above and travel, art, functionality and most important. Fun!, It's going to be quite a personal bike, not being built for others, just me. An art bike.

I was looking at your Metro Rat 22 build, now that is an inspiring build. I'm keeping an eye on it.

Have an idea for a theme, an odd one but I like it. Stickers mainly, lots of them!

best regards
Metro Rat 22 build?
 
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View attachment 195741
The Raleigh 22 was called metro 22
Very nice,
A first glance might think, ah a raleigh twenty with 18inch wheels? But they're not. In my mind I see it comparative to a lowrider car (something else I find inspiring). Hmmmm, If I had the time and inclination, I would get another twenty and put 18inch (Commando) wheels on it. And of course shortening the crank arms too.
So much potential with these bikes.

Update: Not much progress, waiting on parts (tyres/tubes, freewheel, BB's for forks). And theres a postal strike next week :headbang:

Though i got some clear lacquer yesterday.
 
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Very nice,
A first glance might think, ah a raleigh twenty with 18inch wheels? But they're not. In my mind I see it comparative to a lowrider car (something else I find inspiring). Hmmmm, If I had the time and inclination, I would get another twenty and put 18inch (Commando) wheels on it. And of course shortening the crank arms too.
So much potential with these bikes.

Update: Not much progress, waiting on parts (tyres/tubes, freewheel, BB's for forks). And theres a postal strike next week :headbang:

Though i got some clear lacquer yesterday.
20in on 22 frame, lowriders did you say? Love em got 2 full custom lowrider bikes, will never be able to afford a car but if I could it would be a 1972 buick riviera boat tail
 
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20in on 22 frame, lowriders did you say? Love em got 2 full custom lowrider bikes, will never be able to afford a car but if I could it would be a 1972 buick riviera boat tail
Yup a lowrider inspired bike. I did briefly consider putting on some white wall Lowrider tyres until I saw the price of them.

Theres a nice little clip here, there some great lowrider custom bikes, but I really like the bike on at about 1:56, it's only on screen for a few seconds
seconds.
It's ridden by a bill poster. Looks like a mini moulton mini? It's weirdly an inspiration for this twenty build. I did a screen grab and use it as my avatar.

I know the Buick Rivvy, I have several of them and lowrider, I collect hotwheels, matchbox, corgi etc die casts, indeed i am a child :D
 

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