This system showed its face in 1970 (I have named it accordingly), and was phased out in mid-1973.EXCEPTIONS: Evidence indicates that a handful of '70-'71 frames - or their lugs, depending on when the stamping was done - may not have been released from the factory until 1973, and were consequently decaled as 1973 models.
Please make a concerted effort to see that your serial(s) is/are an exact match - that is, the serial number system, serial placement, and font type are identical to that of your frame.By 1961/62, an additional-single letter suffix was added, presumably as an identifier of the factory the frame was produced, for every single example I've seen is represented by the letter "N," which is not unreasonable to assume stands for Nottingham.Neither it is not out of the question that other letters may exist, representing Raleigh's other factories.This chart has been developed as an additional reference guide (more so then simply dating off Sturmey-Archer hubs) for the positive identification of Raleigh frames and entire bicycles. Given the number of bicycles produced at Raleigh during any given year versus the relatively small sample size of bikes available to me (200 individual examples at last count), I cannot guarentee absolute accuracy.As proper factory documentation is very limited, the following charts are a constant work in progress; they have been compiled by examining numerous Raleigh frames from each period, component date codes, decal schemes, color availabilities per year; and - occasionally - official papers. Nevertheless, please put your mind at ease - these serial charts have been checked, re-checked, and are as accurate as I can provide at their time of publication. and export production serials may vary - conversely, they may not.
If new information is found, these charts will be duly updated to reflect such.
"T" serials replaced "P" serials sometime mid-year 1950.
Digits or letters in serial do NOT relate to month/year/day codes; only the serial in whole determines the year.
If your Raleigh is equipped with a Sturmey-Archer rear hub that you suspect has not been been changed, check the date code on the hub's shell as well for additional verification.
Please do not repost the serial charts below elsewhere.
This system follows a similar pattern to Convention #2 above, and uses a prefix or suffic of "RA" or "RB," followed by 4 or 5 digits, but never exceeding 5.