I recently picked up a 1979 Raleigh (Triumph) Twenty from eBay. It was cheap and surprisingly I was able to ride it a few km from where I picked it up to Wigan Wallgate station. This was appreciated because it meant I had to spend less time in Wigan.
The Raleigh Twenty was made between 1968 and 1984 and was sold under most of the company names Raleigh had accumulated by that point, with the brand used to differentiate between models:
The one I got is a Triumph, the second most basic of the models on this list. Sadly the kitbag is gone, and the rest of it needs some work. By the feel of the ride, all of the bearings need to be replaced. This presents an interesting technical challenge, due to the widespread use of proprietary sizes and threading by Raleigh “back in the day.”
The Twenty on the train ride home
The Sturmey Archer hub shell date stamp, October 1979.
Genuine Brooks leather saddle (not as bad as I thought it would be, but it will be replaced).
At first I thought these were quick releases, but they are actually basically wing nuts. They allow easy seat and handlebar height adjustment.
Interesting brazed yet non-lugged frame construction. Seems to have stood the test of time though.
The bike only has mounts for caliper brakes, although the back also has a plate for mounting a Dutch-style O-lock, which I may do at some stage.
I am planning to start by completely disassembling the bike and treating any structural issues such as rust first, possibly giving it a new paint job. All the ball bearings in the headset, bottom bracket and wheels will be replaced and the bottom bracket may be switched out if the cotters break when I remove them. All the cables will benefit from being replaced too.
I will keep updates coming for this project as it progresses