It's not a car; but it's Charles’ somewhat ancient Raleigh

Landrover, Range Rover, Jeep or whatever - off-road or not, this is the one.

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It's not a car; but it's Charles’ somewhat ancient Raleigh

Post by Charles827si » Thu Dec 24, 2015 10:43 pm

Raleigh Dorado Mountain Bike (AKA: - 'The Field-Rover')

I write this at my desk after being merry and (not having been drinking mind) listening to ‘The Pogues Album (With Dirty Old Town and fairy tale of New York or whatever it’s called/known) Now it's Shakin' Stevens - White Christmas!

Lately, while I have not been busy playing brass band carols with my local brass band whom I have been with 10 years now, and not to mention managing my own new van repair/valeting business, and fixing mums old Mk1a 827si (and my old model railway I have had since I was 7 in my parents’ home attic!); - I have been getting round to the old trusty blue and black, double suspension’ed’ Dorado mountain bike, adapted for on road and off road use. I have had this bike from brand new (since 2001 bought locally in Keighley Town Centre). Since then, it has only had one minor service, and a pannier frame fitted to the rear end. Now it’s time it had some bit of a restoring plan.

So just lately, I have taken the liberty of getting round, to much needed essential repairs and modifications for serious off-roading and night use, while raining on road usability. Ideally it could do with another 3 gears to make it 21 gearing rather than 18 which it still has. For me this is not fast enough for my enthusiastic peddling! (Though first however, I still need to replace the aged and cracked continental tyres with very similar ones – my local Keighley Halfords are sorting that out now over the Christmas period)

Over the past few days, I have been doing as follows: -

Proving the bike in quite muddy flooded fields

Fixing the lighting at the front and rear

Spray painting the panier frame, handle bars after comfort wrapping them with tape.

Last night, after the test ride, I spent another 3 hours fettling the 'Field-Rover'.

The battery got caput when the bike was jet washed at a hand car wash. So I soldiered a lower voltage battery from an older bicycle light.

The triple light is now mounted on a bracket which is external to the handle bars. The handle bars are now adjustable as well (because I did not tighten these properly lol!)

There is a new USB chargeable light at the front.

The frame and panier carrier have been resprayed again.

A reflector has been fitted behind the panier frame.

A plastic cover off my sisters classic Raleigh 1994 bike has been fitted between the pedal and sprocket. The LED light has been moved to a higher position, beneath the seat.

Jobs next are complete overhaul of the drive train and brakes to a useable standard. (However, I'm not a perfectionist like my Dad who meticulously restored his much sought after 1990 Raleigh Pioneer Road Bicycle with every new part except the frame replaced.
Charles 'Yorks'
"88 827si Fastback (manual) - Mum owned from new
"92 827 Coupe (manual)
"88 827sli Saloon (auto)
Once owned a 93 827 Coupe (L132EUK manual) and a 91 fastback
It's a stick shift? No, It's a grip shift!

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Re: It's not a car; but it's Charles’ somewhat ancient Ralei

Post by scoobyh123 » Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:58 pm

Very interesting Charles - evokes memories of the Raleigh Esprit i had as a teenager. That was a "tourer" rather than a mountain bike so designed for doing pretty much the same as yours but only on tarmac. :wink:

It came with a rack on the back and full length mudguards and 5-speed derailleur gears with a handlebar stem mounted shift lever. I experimented with different gear sets on that as well, a 4 speed (not much good for the hilly area i lived in as the ratios were too far apart) which was great for long distance flat cruising at high speed (for a tredder anyway!) and a 6-speed which eventually was the long term solution - the extra gear and spread of ratios giving me better hill climbing and long distance cruising.

One of the exams i took at school was Technology, later renamed CDT - Craft, Design and Technology. I fitted a 6v motorbike battery and twin dynamos, rectifiers etc, a horn (that doubled as an alarm when linked to the frame lock), twin headlamps (one flood set as dipped beam and another long reach one equipped with a halogen bulb as a driving lamp) both of which were used for "full beam", a rear fog lamp, brake light and indicators on the rear. I also managed to illuminate the speedo so i could see if i was breaking the speed limit after dark! :lol:

With all the documentation i provided with it, i gained an extra "O" level (showing my age now! :oops: ) and your story of the development and experimentation with your bike reminded me of that.

It was new in 1981 and i broke the frame about a year later and then again in 1984 but didn't get it fixed the second time as i was taking my driving test not long after. Even now, 30+ years on i still have strong leg muscles from all the cycling i did back then. That said, trying to cycle anywhere now would have me in agony and no doubt a major coughing fit, if not a heart attack as well! :lol:

Keep up the good work!

'94 827 Sterling saloon
'88 Volvo 760 V6 Estate
All auto :D
'95 827 Coupé LPG gone but not forgotten!

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