Classic and Vintage Bicycles: What's it Worth? Appraisals and Inquiries - Schwinn Paramount Appraisal
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01-10-12, 04:15 PM
I am new to this forum as well as the world of cycling. I have been looking through these forums and they have been a great deal of help.
I am considering purchasing for my first bike this used ~'95 Schwinn Paramount:
I have done a lot of research on this make/model of bike as well as getting the proper fit. I am really looking forward to now purchasing a solid entry bike for touring as well as sprint triathlons(non-competitive). What can you tell me about this bike? I've been a bit hard-pressed to find Paramounts that match this color scheme as well.
I am in the process of getting a serial number. But I'm guessing this is a Japanese Model.
The seller description reads:
"Classic Schwinn Paramount OS Steel frame. 54-55cm frame from Center of crank to top of top tube. Approx. circa 1995. Pro issue bike. Ultegra 600 shifter/deraileur, down tube index shifting , Sacks cranks components, Look clipless pedals, Cateye computer, Mavic 32 stainless steel spoke rims, Profile Stem and Ergo handlebars. Never raced or crashed (fell over getting out of pedals a couple of times). Scratches and Scrapes mostly due to storage in a garage."
It has been stored for quite some time, ~ 10 years and was ridden for Touring/Group Rides. The seller has stated I will most likely need a tune up with some new tires.
I will definitely ride before I buy, and make sure the fit is okay though I am not really comfortable paying $400 for this bike. However, can you also tell me about the quality of the components? I am still new to these type of components and am trying to learn as much as I can.
I'm thinking this bike is worth fixing up. Please give me your input, it would be greatly appreciated.
Tip #1: Never post the exact ad on this forum. Its not so much forum members, but its the world wide web, and a lot of people are surfing it, looking for deals.
Note, lousy pictures in that ad, so in person trumps it all. Paint looks pretty good to me, hopefully it looks good in person.
I would be in my car, and off to buy it if it were me. Paramounts sell well, this is a nice one, in a desirable size. Realize at the $400 point, you are only half way to the price of a new entry level bike. This bike is no entry level bike for sure. Value is ALL about condition, only an in person check will verify that. Grab now, research later.
Note, if this is outside your budget, I would either make an offer inside your budget, or move on. I have passed on many good deals solely because they were outside my budget.
I am a little confused about the DT shifting. By that era, the bike should have STI. Nice bike regardless, I don't think it will last. OK, bikepedia has a 1993 with DT Shimano 600 shifters. Odd, as my 1992 9C came with Shimano 600STI. Schwinn catalogs do not match bikepedia.
I may be a little biased. Lets see, Paramounts of that era I have owned:
1991 Series 3 (gone, but not forgotten)
1992 Series 5 (keeper)
1992 Series 9C (frameset, next project)
Go a little earlier, and I have a 1986 Waterford (wrong size, will leave in 2012).
Other imported Schwinns: 1973 World Voyageur, 1987 Schwinn Prologue (X2, one leaves in 2012). Nothing wrong with the higher level imported Schwinns. Schwinn had some good companies build for them, like Panasonic (National).
01-10-12, 04:54 PM
Go now. Heck call a friend you know who is looking for a "race" bike in case it does not fit.
01-10-12, 05:38 PM
Agree with Bill. If it fits, and fits your budget, you can't go wrong.
01-10-12, 05:54 PM
Thank you very much Bill and the rest for your input.
I didn't think of the ad posting until after the fact but lesson has been learned.
I will definitely be checking this out soon and I will give you all an update when I test it and pick it up.
The ad has been up for a few days. If was any cheaper or my size I would have bought it already since it's in my neighborhood. Sales seem to be slow lately around here unless something is way undervalued. Just my opinion.
If it fits and in good shape go get it. Then post some good photos and ride the tar out of it.
01-10-12, 11:40 PM
Just curious but, what is the exact Paramount model name of this bike?
Is this part of the PDG Series?
I can't seem to tell from the pictures.
01-11-12, 06:18 PM
Go check that thing out ASAP. 1980s/90s Paramounts are good sellers and unless this one is overpriced it should go quickly. If you wait too long it'll be gone before you have a chance to look at it.
I got my friend a 90s PDG series with RX100 for $150 in great shape. Beautiful bike. I called about it immediately and barely got to it in time.
01-11-12, 10:11 PM
It's not a "true" Paramount. It's PDG bike so it's made by Panasonic in Japan. I had that exact same team issue frame with the red/white/blue color scheme. It just says Series PDG and no digit as it's one of the earlier of the Paramount PDG stuff but used decent Tange OS tubing. This frame I'm dead certain never came as a complete bike and just as a frame/fork. The serial numbers for the PDG stuff don't really have a pattern to go off of like a real Waterford Paramount so it's difficult to find a year on this special model. Atleast with the other PDG models they appear in the Schwinn catalogs. It's still a nice bike but nothing to write home about or drop four bills. I picked up three this past summer and could of had another but passed as they just don't raise that much of an eyebrow like the real deal Paramounts do. I wouldn't pay $400 cause the stuff isn't really all that great. My Paramount Series PDG had Campy Record 8 speed components with a decent selection of other parts I picked up for $250. I still have the Record 8 speed wheels and brifters from that bike but sold the rest. I still have a PDG30 mountain bike frame and fork left in my frame stash. Just your standard TIG welded steel early 90's Japanese built MTB frame. Nothing I would even list up on eBay to waste my time listing and shipping out.
To above, that explains the DT shifters. Its a 1990 bike, not 1995. That makes it a little less valuable. Around here, I would aim to spend $300 or less as a keeper. I've got bikes on either side of this model. I have a 1987 Prologue (built by Panasonic), which was a precursor to the PDG bikes. And I have had three Series Paramounts, that came shortly after. I consider them all very nice bikes, often under-equipped component wise. The one in the OP has tricolor Shimano 600, which is good stuff. Parted out, the tricolor alone should bring $250 to $300 (I would not part out this bike).
01-13-12, 05:12 PM
Just an update, I did end up purchasing this bike within my budget.
Regardless of how much I paid(or overpaid), and "true" Paramount vs non, this bike is awesome and the joy I got within the first minutes of riding made everything worthwhile.
Overall the bike is great, sturdy, shifts smooth and quick. I would like to thank you members who had taken the time to look at and post your opinions on the bike.
I really do enjoy this bike and also the hobby of cycling. It really is amazing to get out into the world and ride and see sights/sounds that I wouldn't usually see when I go for my usual runs.
One last thing I would ask help on is with deciphering the serial #. I know that my bike wasn't made in the US but I still would like to know as much about the history as possible. I have no problems with an Asian built bike, being a practitioner of Judo I am more than happy knowing that the bike was made in Japan.
Regardless, the serial number is: E01892
Is anything else in this serial significant? Also, as Henry mentioned the year is hard to find out but any one else have any idea what year the bike was made?
Thanks again for your replies and any further suggestions towards the bike will be gladly accepted
Does the bike have a metal headbadge or a decal? If it is metal, it will have the typical date code stamped on it. Decal, no dice. My 1987 Prologue has a metal headbadge, my 1992 Schwinn Paramount Series 5 has a decal.
The other way to date this bike is to look up the component codes on vintage Trek. I usually add four to six months to the code for my estimate. I am betting it is a 1990.
Price is all relative. To me, there is no substitute for great paint, and I will pay a premium for it. The paint on that bike looked really good to me. And the tricolor components are excellent. Heck, I bought my very similar Prologue off ebay, had it shipped from Utah (that was not cheap!), and basically only kept the frame. Oh yeah, and it got damaged in transit. Most would say I overpaid for the bike. I wouldn't. I looked for a Prologue, in that color scheme, in my size, for almost two years..... Now if I posted a "What is it worth" query, what I have in it would not sound like a bargain. And I just bought another set of wheels for it (more money going into it). Now I picked those wheels up used (donor bike), and these wheels will go onto my Paramount 9C (another bike I will have too much into)...
Oh, and it was made in Japan (half of my keeper fleet is made in Japan). Personally, I think Japan made outstanding bikes during that era, with excellent workmanship.
From the vintage Panasonic site: "
How can I tell what year my Panasonic bicycle is?
Typically, the lower part of the head tube or the bottom of the bottom bracket shell will contain a number. The first number and letter are what you should look for. Example: 7K02143 The first number designates the year (1987 in this case) and the letter designates the month of manufacture (K = 11th month, therefore November). "
Your serial number doesn't quite follow that pattern, but is close. I would look for a number in front of the E.
For anyone into Panasonic bikes (like me), this is an excellent site:
FWIW, my four Panasonics in the keeper fleet, are all SCHWINNS.
Tange also often put a date code on their forks (on the steering tube).
01-13-12, 08:35 PM
I had the exact same frame as 8Limbs5Families and had a hard time finding out the year based off of the serial number. I believe these team color frames were like 90 or 91. They had that same color option for the Prologue frame like 88 or 89 I believe. I'm not bashing on the frame as I had one and the only reason I got rid of mine was to help fund my Colnago project.
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