Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 38

Thread: schwinn Varsity

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    12
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    schwinn Varsity

    I just picked up a green 24" Schwinn Varsity 10 speed. Serial FJ597471 It needs tires and tubes, and a real good cleaning.
    Can anyone tell me the year, and if it was worth the $10 I had to give for it?

  2. #2
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Kalamazoo MI
    Posts
    7,348
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    FJ means June 1973. If it is in otherwise nice shape it is easily worth the $10 you paid for it.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  3. #3
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    The NC Mountains
    My Bikes
    Too many to list, all vintage
    Posts
    19,414
    Mentioned
    52 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Assuming it is not a rust bucket and does not have frame damage, should be worth $100 cleaned up.

  4. #4
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Southern Florida
    My Bikes
    http://www.theheadbadge.com
    Posts
    22,731
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    $100 in a good market. $75 in slow markets.

    -Kurt

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    12
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

  6. #6
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Kalamazoo MI
    Posts
    7,348
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Links don't work if you aren't a facebook member. Try a free picture site like photobucket.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  7. #7
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    May I extend this thread? I looked at a campus green 1972 Schwinn Varsity at a local Salvation Army store yesterday and wonder if I should have bought it. It seems SA prices have risen, despite the poor Detroit-area economy. The price was $39.99, with a one-day discount of 35%, on a bike that was mostly intact except for a missing headbadge. The chrome was badly rusted on the wheels and the RD. The frame seemed straight and the paint dulled, but not chipped as bad as my own '72 Suburban, although there was plenty of evidence of chain slap on the chainstay. I felt that even the final price of $26 was too much for a Varsity in this condition, because my intent is clean it up, make minor repairs and resell it.

    So is $26 too much? I asked the store clerk about prices, and she assured me that the price would likely never be lower than the 35% off, because bikes sell quickly there.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  8. #8
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Kalamazoo MI
    Posts
    7,348
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    That is maybe a $75-$100 bike after you fix it up. How much it would cost you to get it in flipable condition should be your guideline on whether or not to pursue it further.

    Flipping Varsitys isn't a big profit making venture.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
    My Bikes
    riders:Schwinn Continental ('80), Specialized Crossroads Sport ('07), Schwinn Super Sport (73), Schwinn Superior (76), Projects: Schwinn Sprint ('74), Trek 800 & Schwinn Continental ('71)
    Posts
    524
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    For me it would depend on frame size in addition to the condition. I like 24" and 26" frames to work with.

    Schwinn chrome cleans up real pretty with brillo pad, or WD40 and aluminum foil.

    Schwinn paint if dulled will shine like new with careful polishing and even the decals will restore nicely if not cracked.

    Head badge of this vintage would be oval white, and not date stamped, replacement should be found with a little effort.

    A fixie/single speed builder would have jumped on it at that price.

    I understand SA and even Goodwill often price all bikes at about the same price $30 to $40 and that they do not linger longer than a day or two.


    Maybe it is still there?

  10. #10
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Well, thank you both for your replies, you are (unfortunately?) confirming my suspicions and stirring me to feed my habit. In fact -- get this -- the SA store is open today. Those poor store employees. So, I just may go check it out. I had intended to buy at least one used shotgun at Gander Mountain yesterday as well, but the ones I wanted were all sold. That means I have some disposable income remaining to blow on another bike.

    I do have some experience cleaning and shining Schwinn chrome -- other C&V members have stated strong positions against using steel wool or any abrasive, by the way -- and while my results have been good, I've never worked on chrome that was rusted as badly as this bike's. So I was a bit uncertain about taking it on.

    I realize flipping Varsities is not a real profit-making venture. I'm just hoping to acquire skills in restoring bikes, and to more-or-less break even in supporting my bike habit. If I got $75-$100 for that Varsity, I'd be thrilled.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  11. #11
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    South of Raleigh, North of New Hill, West of Harris Lake, NC
    My Bikes
    Giant OCR-C, Specialized Tarmac, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR, Stumpjumper Comp, 05 Rockhopper, 88 & 92Nishiki Ariel, 01 Bianchi Campione, 87 Centurion Ironman, 92 Paramount, 97 Lemond
    Posts
    8,882
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I would point out the damage to the rims. If it is severe enough, they will have to be replaced and that can take all the profit out of this venture. I would approach this carefully.
    Roccobike BF Official Thread Terminator

  12. #12
    Senior Member cycleheimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    New York Metro Area
    My Bikes
    1995 Trek 720 Multi-Track, 1994 Cannondale M600, 1991 Schwinn CrossCut, 1984 Raleigh Touring 18, 1981 Fuji S12S (18 spd), 1978 Bridgestone Kabuki Diamond Touring
    Posts
    3,390
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    At resale value of about $100, you could collect a few at $10 to $25 each. Swap parts out to your current project bike, sell it when it is ready...then go on to the next one. At that price the parts alone are worth it, somebody would probably even buy the bare frame off you to build up into something else. It's been awhile, but I remember Varsities to be a pretty basic rebuild. Mostly cleaning & lubing.

  13. #13
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Thanks again for the replies and advice. Yes, I was thinking the same thing as cycleheimer as I looked over the bike -- if it was just a frame on CL or eBay, someone would be buying it. I was filled with indecision. Partly, I'm sure, because I have been just a bit spoiled by the garage sale finds and trash day finds over this past summer. Also partly because my wife and kids are complaining daily about the number of bikes in the garage. There's not really room for another bike. I suppose the smart thing to do would be to throw out my current worst bike to make room for the next one. Hm. Yes, that's what I should do. Thanks for the idea.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  14. #14
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    The NC Mountains
    My Bikes
    Too many to list, all vintage
    Posts
    19,414
    Mentioned
    52 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    My basic rule on thrift store bikes is there needs to be about $100 margin above parts for me to buy it. I get parts cheap (load up on them during various internet sales). The $100 margin figure is to cover hidden problems that I can't spot in the thrift store, my labor, and any error in my "estimates".

    I usually restrict my buys to cromoly framed bikes (or better) with alloy rims and crank set. It is hard to get over $100 for a bike unless it has these features.

    Almost everytime I lower my "bar", I end up sorry (don't make any money).

    I would not pay $30 for a Varsity in need of work, as there is no way I could sell it for more than $100. Add new cables, tires, tubes and replace the seat (seats on TS bikes are almost always trashed), and my margin goes to about $20 or less. No room for bargaining on sale (everyone wants a deal).

    Note, all of these comments are in regards to flips. If the bike is for myself, and something I was looking for, I would not hold it to the $100 rule. But I am not looking for a Varsity, been there, done that.
    Last edited by wrk101; 01-01-09 at 05:29 PM. Reason: addl comment

  15. #15
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Thanks for the sound economic advice. I tend to view bikes with undue optimism. There is a site containing advice on buying and flipping bikes, called something like bicyclewebsite.com or bikewebsite.com, in which the author sets forth his rules on bike prices. He advocates setting a target selling price of triple the cost of the bike and required parts. If that price is higher than the typical sale price of bikes of that vintage and model, then he passes. But his prices are for Oregon of 1989, so the site's text is dated. I think it's a book that was transcribed to the Internet site. Your $100 margin sounds safer.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  16. #16
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    P.S. You are right on the mark about the '72 Varsity at the thrift store -- it did need new tires, tubes, cables, and a seat.

    It doesn't help that I'm fond of Campus Green Schwinns.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  17. #17
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    OK, I bought it. I paid too much. But I wanted it. (My son has shown interest in the blue 1984 women's Varsity I bought for my daughter, so I thought he might like this one.) The older lady SA store manager was firm. When I said $39.99 was more than the bike was worth, but I was willing to pay the price at the 35% discount offered on New Year's Eve, she said that was then, and she'd take $30 because the bike came in only recently. Here it is:






    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  18. #18
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Kalamazoo MI
    Posts
    7,348
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Looks like you now have a project to work on.

    You may have to soak the rusty bits in an oxalic acid bath. Do a search on here about it.

    Barkeeper's Friend contains oxalic acid at a low concentration. Works well on smaller bits.

    Here is one I recently refurbished.

    Last edited by cb400bill; 01-03-09 at 07:31 AM.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  19. #19
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Beautiful! I do have Barkeeper's Friend that I have used on another Campus Green Schwinn Breeze with success. What did you use on the paint?
    Last edited by DavidW56; 01-03-09 at 08:56 AM. Reason: add question
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  20. #20
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Kalamazoo MI
    Posts
    7,348
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The paint on mine only needed a little cleanup. Soap, water, elbow grease.

    But if yours needs a little more, try some rubbing compound on a cloth. Some on here have used McGuire's Scratch X with good results. Whatever you use be careful around the decals. And don't buy the vintage Varsity decals on eBay.

    Though pricey, Hyper-formance is the only source of Campus Green touch up paint i could find. I got my bike to flip so I didn't purchase any. You mileage may vary.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  21. #21
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    That is Meguiar's ScratchX compound. I've seen other posters recommend it. My question -- is the Meguiar's brand that much better than the others? I do have a product called Scratch X that is not Meguiar's that I have used on my cars.

    Also, why don't I want to buy the vintage Varsity decals on eBay? I've never bought vintage decals anywhere, so I have no clue there.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  22. #22
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Southern Florida
    My Bikes
    http://www.theheadbadge.com
    Posts
    22,731
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidW56 View Post
    is the Meguiar's brand that much better than the others?
    Probably not, if they do the same thing. KIT Scratch Out works just as good, and in some cases, I've found that the thicker consistency of the KIT product works better.

    -Kurt

  23. #23
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    1,236
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Thanks for the recommendation. I think KIT is the brand I have. In addition, I have Dupont Rubbing Compound, both the No. 7 and No. 9, IIRC the product names. Green can and red can.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

  24. #24
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
    My Bikes
    riders:Schwinn Continental ('80), Specialized Crossroads Sport ('07), Schwinn Super Sport (73), Schwinn Superior (76), Projects: Schwinn Sprint ('74), Trek 800 & Schwinn Continental ('71)
    Posts
    524
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have not had favorable results with rubbing compound on all situations, would only utilize on the real tough zones.

    From your pictures, the chrome will require the most attention and most if not all should clean up real shiney.

    I would still recommend brillo pad (wet) on the rims and chain guards. The steel wool material on brillo pads is very soft, much more than the harden Schwinn chrome, and should reduce the surface pits with a good rubbing. I usually can get a single pad to last for one rim. Another for spokes, sometimes two. Max is usually three per rim.

    If rims are deeply pitted then a search for a donor bike with aluminum or alloy rims maybe best solution.

  25. #25
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Southern Florida
    My Bikes
    http://www.theheadbadge.com
    Posts
    22,731
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by bab2000 View Post
    I have not had favorable results with rubbing compound on all situations, would only utilize on the real tough zones.
    What type of rubbing compound? Stuff such as 3M's Microfinishing Compound?

    -Kurt

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •