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Classic and Vintage Bicycles: What's it Worth? Appraisals and Inquiries Use this subforum for all requests as to "How much is this vintage bike worth?"Do NOT try to sell it in here, use the Marketplaces.

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Old 09-10-12, 08:55 PM   #1
AlphaRed
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Aluminum Schwinn 974

I have no pictures ....Sorry
but I found an original 974 complete with all Shimano Tri-color including the wheels. I would have to say the bike is in very good condition. Index shifting works great. What can I expect to sell this bike for?
I will see if I can get some pictures. I have put on new tires, tubes and bar tape.
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Old 09-10-12, 09:26 PM   #2
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You'll need pictures for the ad anyway, so might as well take some for us.

Does this one have the expander wedge seatpost?
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Old 09-10-12, 09:34 PM   #3
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You'll need pictures for the ad anyway, so might as well take some for us.

Does this one have the expander wedge seatpost?
It does have the expander seat post. This bike is a beauty.

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Old 09-11-12, 08:33 AM   #4
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As is always the case with collectables whether cars, bikes, model trains or hair dyers.... the seller is going to get the most money for an original, unrestored item in good or better original condition. I don't mean to criticize, but replacing the bar tape, etc., even if done well with original and correct New Old Stock (NOS) material typically reduces the actual value to a knowledgable collector. If one has such restoration material on hand that is fine and include that information with the sale ad decription, but messing with the bike itself will generally turn off collectors. When is it good to restore an item? Basically with the item is "too far gone" and a complete redo is necessary...and this is a difficult judgement call. In most cases the cost of such a restoration will far exceed what the restored item would sell for afterwards. So unless you have a completely rotted away bike that Eddie actually rode in a real Tour de France and you have documentation to conclusively prove the historical facts, it is basically better to not attempt a restoration.
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Old 09-11-12, 10:01 AM   #5
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I don't think tires, tubes and tape have anything to do with originality. Those are items that just need to be replaced as regular maintenance items.

As for the bike, I wouldn't expect it to get much love from the C&V crowd. Not to many aluminum fans among them. But it is a nice looking bike for sure. I would expect the ride to be a bit on the stiff side, due to the all-aluminum frame, fork and seat stays, so you might want to test ride. I ride an aluminum Miyata and like it just fine, although the fork and stays are alloy, which I think takes some of the harshness out of the ride.

In a decent market, I think you can get $250-300...
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Old 09-11-12, 10:06 AM   #6
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Expander wedge seatpost is a big minus. Irreplacable, and many of the ones I've seen have been cracked. Personally, I advise folks not to buy a bike that requires one. Value is in tri-color group. Waiting on pics.
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Old 09-11-12, 11:14 AM   #7
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Agree with Giacomo 1. I would appreciate as much originality as I can get from a bike I acquired, but Ughhhh...expendables like bar tape, Toe clip straps, tires and tubes and saddles should be changed if they're damaged, beat up and dirty on any bike. Only reason you might want to retain such would be if the bike was ridden in some historic race by a great champion and you are preserving the bike as a "snaphot" of that event. Otherwise, I think you WILL get more money if you do change out those items for new ones if the originals are past their time and usefulness already.....
Agree too that Aluminum has not been selling as well as Steel, Ti and even CF. All the negative anecdotal statements about them regarding harsh rides and cracking had just tainted them enough, so they are not the first choice anymore for most riders looking for bikes.
I think Al frames are not as bad as people put them out to be. Unfortunately, it's always the rare and extreme occurrences of failures that get all the attention. It's possible that Al bikes will eventually come out of the shadows again in the future as many of them survive out there. and people will realize how much more reliable they are than people think.

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Old 09-11-12, 12:27 PM   #8
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+1 974 around here is going to sell as a rider, not a collectible. Buyers here are not collecting aluminum Schwinns. So in that case:

+1 When someone touts a 20+ year old bike as totally original, its a minus to me. It means the tires, bearings, cables and housings are all original, and all of need of replacement. (with the exception of some rare, highly collectible item).

I would put a higher value on a bike that has been regularly ridden and properly maintained.

+1 Quill seat post is a negative for sure.

+1 Vintage steel gets a stronger response than vintage aluminum, except for Cannondales. Around here, Cannondales have a strong following.
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Old 09-11-12, 05:18 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ksisler View Post
As is always the case with collectables whether cars, bikes, model trains or hair dyers.... the seller is going to get the most money for an original, unrestored item in good or better original condition. I don't mean to criticize, but replacing the bar tape, etc., even if done well with original and correct New Old Stock (NOS) material typically reduces the actual value to a knowledgable collector. If one has such restoration material on hand that is fine and include that information with the sale ad decription, but messing with the bike itself will generally turn off collectors. When is it good to restore an item? Basically with the item is "too far gone" and a complete redo is necessary...and this is a difficult judgement call. In most cases the cost of such a restoration will far exceed what the restored item would sell for afterwards.
I don't mean to criticize, but you have no idea what you're talking about in this case. People are not collecting 80s aluminum Schwinns, the value is as a rider. Bar tape, cables, housing, tires, and other consumables are required items in tuning up an old bike.

+1 to wrk101's comment. 30 year old bikes that are 100% original ALWAYS need an overhaul because the original grease, cables, etc are no good.

Things like saddle and pedals that often get swapped out are usually not a big deal but can matter on higher end bikes or on bikes with specific parts that belong on the bike.
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Old 09-17-12, 08:51 PM   #10
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re Aluminum Schwinn 974

re Aluminum Schwinn 974 discussion in Forum: Classic and Vintage Bicycles: What's it Worth? Appraisals and Inquiries

My more general comment regarding C&V item (including bikes) holds well. I have dealt with (bought and sold) many CnV items and have had to turn down so many that were severely devalued by amateur restoration attempts. If the bike is simply an old rider that is otherwise not particularly special nor of historically significant, then of course make it ride-able and enjoy it. I have no idea if your assessment of the aluminum Schwinn one is actually correct or not and don't care either way. If it is special or significant then my comment fits in that a decision to change or restore it or not should be made carefully only after some research to see if that is advisable or if it will wreck its value.

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I don't mean to criticize, but you have no idea what you're talking about in this case. People are not collecting 80s aluminum Schwinns, the value is as a rider. Bar tape, cables, housing, tires, and other consumables are required items in tuning up an old bike. <snipped for brevity>
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