Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth Aust

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Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth Aust

Postby stumpjumper » Sat Sep 22, 2012 11:04 pm

Stolen early on the morning of 22/9/12 from outside my home in Collinswood SA.

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The bike is a 1957 Raleigh Sports 23 inch frame. It is in very original and complete condition with most options fitted, including a dry battery unit, 3 speed Sturmey Archer AG Dynohub stamped '57' for the year, rod brakes, Sturmey Archer chrome headlight, fully enclosed chain, all original paint and decals, Union pedals with a crossed thread on the rh pedal, original black wiring and Dunlop tyres with 90% tread marked 'Made in Malaya'. It has a black Brooks B66 saddle with all rails and coil springs chromed. There is also a seat stay with a turnbuckle from the nose of the seat to the top tube of the frame, also chromed. There is a brazing repair to the back mudguard where it passes under the seat stays. There is some paint scratched off the side of the headtube. The silver headtube badge says 'Raleigh, Nottingham, England'. There is a lever on the seat tube bolt, wingnuts on the front axle and a gold anodized aluminium Raleigh logo with wings on the front mudguard.

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I believe that the bike had been in a shed from the mid 1960s until I bought it, particularly since the quite fresh tyres were not made after the 1950s.

Everything on the bike works, though the tail light lens is broken and is taped on.

I'd washed and degreased my bike the evening before anbd for the first time left it outside the house, outside my front door, locked with a heavy cable to a large, heavy oak chair (nothing else was available and I didn't want the bike to drip onto the floor inside).

I was expecting a package from Australia Post who deliver on Saturday mornings here. I was in bed when I heard a van pull up in the driveway and there was a knock on the door. After a moment, I heard a van door close and a van drive off. I thought it was Australia Post leaving my parcel. 20 minutes later I opened the door to find my bicycle and the heavy chair gone.

One of my neighbours saw a plain white van arrive, drive down the drive, and leave a few minutes later.

If only I had not been expecting Australia Post, and had got out of bed. The police said the thieves' MO is to knock with a bogus 'wrong house' delivery story ready, and if there is no answer, to steal the bike or whatever of value they have spotted.

The police said the thieves operate in a pair with a van, and may have 'spotters' working for them.

Naturally I've reported the theft to the police and I'm watching eBay and Gumtree for the bike or parts, and I've alerted classic bike shops, Cash Converters and other pawn shops.

I'll pay a SERIOUS REWARD for the return of this bike.
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by BNA » Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:29 pm

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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby Hamster » Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:29 pm

Mate,

That seriously sucks. I really hope you get it back.
It would not be at all strange if history came to the conclusion that the perfection of the bicycle was the greatest achievement of the nineteenth century.
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby stumpjumper » Sun Sep 23, 2012 2:13 pm

So do I. I've spoken to the police again and with organised gangs stealing a large number of bikes in Adelaide each week, their advice is that not to leave a bike of any value outside - whether at home or in city streets, regardless of locks. The cop I spoke to said even a solid lock on the frame presents no problem to organised thieves in a van. A metre long bolt cutter will snip through the frame around the lock in 5 seconds. Another 5 seconds and your bike will be driven away to be stripped and the parts sold.

I'm very p*ssed off. It was a superb bike, and worth a lot of money.

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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby stumpjumper » Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:59 pm

..still p*ssed off. I'm getting around on a Giant hybrid now. It's not the same...
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby Alien27 » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:35 pm

You dont suspect the Aust post delivery van? The parcel deliverys often come in plain vans.
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby stumpjumper » Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:07 am

Woo hoo! I've got my vintage Raleigh Sports back - complete and undamaged!

Stolen 22/9/12, recovered 18/9/13.

There are a few useful tips in how it happened.

A Raleigh enthusiast in country SA who had made a note of one of my 'ads' in a vintsage bike forum rang me to say that he had seen the bike on eBay. I immediately reported this to the police, quoting the number of the report I'd made when it was stolen. While I was waiting for the police to contact eBay etc, I put a huge bid on the bike just to be sure. As there was a local suburb but no phone number in the eBay ad, I did a search in Gumtree for the suburb and 'bicycle' to see if the seller was selling on Gumtree with the same nickname. Sure enough, there was the same nickname in the same suburb on Gumtree - with a phone number. Next I googled the phone number, and came up with the after hours number and place of work of a certain named person. Now I had a name and suburb, I searched Telstra's white pages and bingo - the address. A check on google maps showed features of the back garden at the address visible in the image of my bike on eBay.

I thought I'd stick with the police, so I told them what I had found out and within a few hours, my bike was chauffered to me on a police truck.

It turns out the eBay seller was an unwitting handler of stolen goods, and the police are now on the trail of the probable thief who sold the bike to the eBay advertiser.

I'm happy. And somewhere along the line, someone has polished up all the chrome!
Last edited by stumpjumper on Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby Dan » Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:17 am

That story has made my night - congrats!!
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby stumpjumper » Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:20 am

Thanks! There is a God and he (or she) rides a bike!
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby queequeg » Fri Sep 20, 2013 7:59 am

I wonder how much use the police make of Google. It makes detective work so easy! Good result!
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby kx315 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:33 am

Nice result!!! Some handy detective tips also :D
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby jasonc » Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:21 am

fantastic result!
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby Paul B » Sat Sep 21, 2013 9:09 pm

Great story... fancy that against all the odds. But excellent proactive effort on your behalf got it back Congratulations !!!
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Re: Stolen: 1957 Raleigh Sports black from Collinswood Sth A

Postby stumpjumper » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:03 pm

Heh. The cops rang to ask if I had details of the heavy chair chained to my bike that was nicked along with the bike. Fortunately, I had a set of four of these heavy oak library chairs , so I sent them pics of another one.

They have nailed the bike thief, and he is about to have his day in court. The police think he has the chair too, and will charge him with nicking that as well. Serves him right.
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