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Saddle Springs - Series A (and other pre-war bikes)


A_HRD

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I was following a guy on a Series A the other day and was struck by the amount his 'derriere' was moved off-centre by the action of the two coil-springs on the rear of the saddle. Rather than bouncing vertically up and down, the rear of the saddle was moving way off to the right the further it got compressed. This must be doing nothing good for the stressed saddle components, nor for the quality of the ride.

The reason is quite simple; the 2 springs are wound in the same direction so encourage the above scenario. If they were each wound in opposite directions then the problem would cancel-out.

So my question is: did Series As originally have contra-wound springs or not? Further, I have noticed various different fixing styles - which is correct? Anyone got a photo of a correct spring pair?

Regardless of the answer, I would like to get a few contra-wound pairs made (using increased wire diameter to account for demographic weight increase!). Anyone know a good UK spring company who is up to this small-scale task please? Anyone interested in having a pair?

Peter B
 

vin998

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
VOC Forum Moderator
When rebuilding my series A Comet 10 years ago the late Bob Stafford told me the springs were originally contra wound for exactly the reason you mention Peter. I got my seat metalwork and springs from Keith Lucas which are contra wound, but I believe he has since stopped making them.
Simon
 

vibrac

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
A good fit to the pivot and spindle is worth a bit of time I have made some top hat bushes on some of my old ones a 3/8 spindler in 2 bits of 1/8 strip hardley holds the forces
 

timetraveller

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I have had over 300 springs made in the past few years for the John Emmanuel steering mod. If you get enough interest send me the specs you need and I will see if they are able to produce what you want. If they are then you can deal with them
 

Andy B

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
The original springs I have for my series A are contra wound, a Terry's seat was fitted as per the build sheet, I am getting new ones wound shortly as mine are pitted, I believe they are the same spring as the Dunlop rubber saddle. I will be getting spare sets done, I just need to get my backside in gear!
 

A_HRD

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Andy, that's great to know that PEI had the sense to use contra-wound ones. Even better if you are getting them made! Hope to hear soon that your backside is in gear - and mounted on larger wire-diameter contra-wound springs!

Peter B
 

A_HRD

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
As Simon says, Keith Lucas used to make saddle kits for Series As. Sadly, I have to inform you that he is now no longer able to do so because of worsening, age-related, health problems.

Peter B
 

Dinny

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Keith made me a saddle kit last year and I believe it was going to be his last. He made a nice job of it and I need to get the rubber mounting at some point.

Mark
 

Chris Launders

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I've had springs made in Sheffield, both counter wound and saddle springs, (the standard ones are a bit on the weak side for me)
The last set of saddle springs, in stainless cost £80, they're not cheap as both ends are closed.
Don Springs LTD Sheffield
 

Bill Thomas

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Armour's only lists Bantam contra-wound springs, you'd think the issue would be common to all such saddles.
Might be an idea to check with them about stock, I went there a month or so ago and they told me they are only doing exhausts now, You might be lucky, Just ask. Cheers Bill.
 

Andy B

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Andy, that's great to know that PEI had the sense to use contra-wound ones. Even better if you are getting them made! Hope to hear soon that your backside is in gear - and mounted on larger wire-diameter contra-wound springs!

Peter B
I will post a picture tomorrow.
 

TouringComet

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
VOC Forum Administrator
I guess I'm out of luck with this Lycett seat that my dad had in the garage for decades.

LycettSprings.JPG
 

Dinny

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
These kits are still available online, I recently purchased one for a flat tracker I'm doing.
My understanding is the ones available are a different size to the Vincent saddles and Keith was the only person making direct copies of the originals.
 

A_HRD

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
While we're on the subject of pre-war saddle springs, is there a suitable (black) paint out there that will stay on the springs for a while without the flexure causing it to flake off? After all, many saddle springs are chrome plated, so if that can survive, surely there's some (black) paint that is suitable for the purpose?

Peter B
 

vin998

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
VOC Forum Moderator
The springs on my A saddle came from Keith Lucas already painted. I don't know what paint he used but its survived the last 7 years of use without flaking off or cracking.

Simon
 

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