Posts Tagged ‘shimano 3s hub’

it must be spring..

it must be spring..

This is a partial rethink of the ” Almost Forgotten ” 3-speed bike of a few posts back. I’ve now refitted it with different drop bars – these are “PureFix” brand 25.4mm in alloy, with a more anatomic bend than I’m used to. Although a bit narrow ( approx 39cm ), they are a definite improvement in comfort over the previous bars, and the new Ritchey Classic bar tape absorbs some jarring of the hands and arms, thanks to its extra thickness. The levers are comfortable from the drops but would be improved with some rubber hoods for cushioning when riding with my hands on the tops.

@ belmont bay

@ belmont bay

I’ve changed the front hub to a low flange model and I think it better suits this bike. The rims are now a matching pair of Ukai 27×1″. The non-original fork on this frame has made the handling more ‘up-to-date’, at the expense of some comfort when compared with the more laid-back (missing) originals, and I think that’s partly why I had the pain problems I noted last time.


e-ne bell stops bar-room brawls … small bike, tall stem 

The new bell is a Crane E-Ne ( ‘eenay’ ) which can be used horizontally or vertically. It has the typical rich Crane sustain, but in a smaller size. The clever little strap mount tightens with a single hex key and needs very little bar room.

The classic Brooks B17 Narrow saddle has better bag mounts than modern versions, in that they are thicker and more rounded, and so less likely to cut through the leather straps over time. The rivets are polishing up nicely with use, and it’s already comfortably pre-aged !

no year code on this one !

no year code on this one !

The Speedwell Special Sports frames aren’t as lightweight as the Flash’s, but the lighter wheels and components on this one help me to move it along at a reasonable pace, and the 3-speed hub is more versatile than the 2-speed kick back coasters that I’ve used on some of the other Speedwell bikes.

Happy Re-cycling !


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a completely irrelevant pic to get your attention....

a completely irrelevant pic to get your attention….but i got there by bicycle !

I don’t have a service diagram for the 70s Shimano 3S, but as it turns out the principles are the same as the Sturmey-Archer AW. The 3S is more compact, and unlike the older Shimano 333, the pawls are held in place by snap ring wire circlips, in much the same way as a 10-speed freewheel cluster.

This makes servicing simpler than the Sturmey Archer AW too, just don’t lose or break those clips !

eeew !

Classique 3 hub — eeew !

The 333 must have been a nightmare with its pawl pins and hair springs, and has a bad reputation for reliability. In my experience the 3S is a good hub although the moving parts do look more delicate than the Sturmey Archer. As far as operation goes the Shimano uses a pushrod to move the gear train against the clutch spring via a bell-crank, whereas the Sturmey Archer uses the cable tension to pull out the indicator rod with the characteristic little chain helping to compress the clutch spring.
Both systems will default to high gear if the cable is detached.

cruddy close-up

horrors ! – a cruddy close-up

I thought it best to look inside the Classique 3’s hub, not knowing its history, and I’m glad I did so as it wasn’t too pretty.

the main assemblies

the main assemblies – planet cage, gear ring, driver and axle w/sun gear – cleaned up 

Note above – the snap ring comes off to release the 4 little cylindrical retaining pins and thus separate the planet cage from the ring gear.

I couldn’t figure out how to remove the planet gears, the sub-assembly doesn’t appear to disassemble beyond the pawls and springs so I had to flush and brush throughout thoroughly with kerosene as best I could.

the driver close-up

the driver close-up

I had a spare to compare it with in case I messed up, and after I finished I also had a quick look inside. This one I have owned since new and inside it looks like an Internal Gear Hub should i.e. no rust !

the deceiving outside ...

the deceptive exterior …

much nicer inside .. approx 40 yrs old with no service but oil ...

much nicer inside .. approx 40 yrs old with no service but oil …

If these hubs can last 30-40 years without a service then if I overhaul them now they should be able to last a riding lifetime ! Just remember that you are unlikely to find spares for them at a bike shop, unless it’s a very old long established one.

If anything breaks or is lost it will probably be necessary to scrap an old hub for spares, if you can find one. The same could apply to the trigger shifter, cable and cable adjusters too, so again take care – and don’t lose anything.

the trigger shifter

the trigger shifter



I re-assembled the hub using Tri-Flow clear teflon grease and inserted a little Pressol oil down the axle after reassembly to improve the flow

ta-daa !

ta-daa ! with bell-crank and turnbuckle adjuster

I’m now looking forward to re-building one of these hubs for my Grandfather’s old Speedwell – onto a new 27″ alloy rim.

one day this will be the ultimate speedwell roadster !

one day this may be the ultimate 3-speed speedwell roadster !

See Ya !


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a genuine user, complete

a genuine user, complete


Say “Hi” to the Speedwell Classique 3.

We’re into the 1970s again and the days of Australian made Speedwells are over – but this one is a throwback to the days of the classic ladies’ 3-speed roadster. It’s a basic design that will never die, though in this case is influenced by the 70s era ten-speed boom in its frame design and angles, and with typical period 27″ wheels.

There are even modern 700c equivalents still being made, like the 3-speed versions of the Giant “Via” step-through, not to mention the many new ‘retro’ step-through bikes that are available these days.

This one was appealing to me because it’s in reasonable condition and complete with the original “Speedwell” sprung saddle, painted and lined mudguards, and matching painted chainguard.

shimano click-trigger

shimano click-trigger

It’s Taiwanese made, and the Shimano 3S hub with trigger shifter is the same that I bought new to “upgrade” my old Speedwell coaster braked roadster so many years ago.

shimano bellcrank and pushrod design

shimano 3S bellcrank and pushrod shift assy.

saddle in good nick is a big bonus - but there's lots of rust on the saddle frame

original saddle top in good nick is a big bonus – but there’s lots of rust on the saddle frame

There is an art to pre-visualising – or imagining in the mind’s eye how an old bike will look when refurbished and this one’s looking pretty good to me !

accessory lights even - lol

accessory lights even – lol

It does need a complete overhaul with special attention to the wheels and bottom bracket, and so hopefully will be interesting to follow as a project, especially if you are restoring something similar yourself . There will be decisions here on what to retain and what to replace, depending on condition, looks and performance.

Does it have to be strictly original or a modern (sometimes!) improvement ? Your choice.

In my case I would never consider repainting this frame – “it’s only original once” !

eek !

eek – omg !

Above is the butcher’s method to cotter pin removal, drilling into the pin’s head – but with care it works well. I use it when all other methods fail. I don’t have a pin press but use a hammer and punch and releasing agent first.

It’s very important to avoid damaging the crank or axle with the drill if you want to re-use them, and to support the crank on a notched block of wood while banging away at the pin, or the bearing surfaces may be ruined.

If you’re sure you are going to scrap them then it doesn’t matter, I guess.

success !

success !

In this case the heat of drilling must have loosened the rust bond as the pin tapped out without going all the way with the drill. I knew the bearings were no good from the initial feel of the rotation but it’s always better to be gentle in case they can be saved.

This job would have been much harder on the drive side as the chain wheel tends to foul the drill – but it tapped out OK.

ready for rust conversion

ready for rust conversion treatment

And this is what your complete overhaul ‘parts box’ might look like after the bike has been fully dismantled.

some cleaning and sorting jobs

some cleaning and sorting jobs ahead …

don't lose these parts, or the pushrod inside the axle either

don’t lose these parts, or the pushrod inside the axle either

And remember to take some time off between dirty jobs …

now relaxxxx ...

now relaxxxx …

See Ya !


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