Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Member Kyle in Maine's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Portland, the other one.
    My Bikes
    Some old Chicago Schwinns, Univega Fixed Gear, building a Surly LHT.
    Posts
    47
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    My New (to me) Schwinn Varsity

    Hey guys, I'm new here. Hoping you all will be able to guide me a little...

    This evening I became the proud owner of a 1978 Schwinn Varsity. I know a lot of folks dog on it (my roommate just rolled his eyes when I came home with it) and I can understand why; it weighs a ton! I knew that going into it though. But I wanted to own a piece of classic American steel (although I am beginning to question whether is was even built in the U.S. Any input?).

    My plans are to upgrade gradually and where possible, starting with getting rid of the steel wheels. Can I go to 700c? I've also considered (briefly) 650 b. Should I stick with 27"? Does anyone know where to get a good set of wheels that are made for 5 spd clusters? I think the rear spacing is 120mm and it seems like the only wheels out there with that spacing are fixed gear wheels. I have a fixed gear already and with the weight of the Varsity I really think I want to stick with a geared set up.

    After the wheels, I was looking to convert to a 3 piece crank and swap out the rear derailleur if not the front also. I'll cross that bridge when I come to it though.

    Oh yeah, I will be replacing the brake pads first and foremost, Kool Stops? Which ones?

    Any help is greatly appreciated and I will try and post pics of the bike as soon as I can get my hands on a digital cam.

    Peace, Kyle

  2. #2
    Super Course fan redneckwes's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Lost on the windswept plains of the Great Black Swamp
    Posts
    2,627
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Kyle,

    It was made in Chicago.

    For wheels, I'd hit the goodwill or Salvation army untill someone turns in an old bike with alloy Araya's or something similar, cheapest way to a decent wheelset. 27's don't require any major changes, and there are still plenty of good tires around.

    Have fun.
    http://bicyclenut.bravehost.com/Bicy...nt%20page.html

    The last two bikes on my list are a 50's Lenton Grand Prix and a '64 Raleigh Record.

  3. #3
    tcs
    tcs is offline
    Palmer tcs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Parts unknown
    Posts
    4,404
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    3,134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by redneckwes
    Kyle,

    It was made in Chicago.

    For wheels, I'd hit the goodwill or Salvation army untill someone turns in an old bike with alloy Araya's or something similar, cheapest way to a decent wheelset. 27's don't require any major changes, and there are still plenty of good tires around.

    Have fun.
    YES YES BUT NO NO NO DON'T try 700's it requires modification.I did that years ago,we didn't KNOW better and were scavenging off a bike that wasn't good anymore.I had to rig an adapter-plate,it worked but I feel that performance of the brake will be compromized.The difference in hole location for the caliper is about 1/8",doesn't seem like much,it is,it's enough to end-up with a useless-oval hole.Don't even bother getting used, wheels,I know of 2 places that have 27" wheels,Weinmans,NEW for less than $35 each,including freight.LBSs can order them as well.they may charge 35 or 40,it will be similar to buying them on-line,freight included.Those old varsity's can be brought to below 30lbs.from it being 36-37 now.

  5. #5
    Super Course fan redneckwes's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Lost on the windswept plains of the Great Black Swamp
    Posts
    2,627
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by old and new
    YES YES BUT NO NO NO DON'T try 700's it requires modification.I did that years ago,we didn't KNOW better and were scavenging off a bike that wasn't good anymore.I had to rig an adapter-plate,it worked but I feel that performance of the brake will be compromized.The difference in hole location for the caliper is about 1/8",doesn't seem like much,it is,it's enough to end-up with a useless-oval hole.Don't even bother getting used, wheels,I know of 2 places that have 27" wheels,Weinmans,NEW for less than $35 each,including freight.LBSs can order them as well.they may charge 35 or 40,it will be similar to buying them on-line,freight included.Those old varsity's can be brought to below 30lbs.from it being 36-37 now.
    I don't know, I've had pretty good luck with used wheels, and Allways 27X1-1/4 for me, My last set, Araya's w Sanshin hubs came from the S/A on a $14 world sport. the freewheel is even useable.
    http://bicyclenut.bravehost.com/Bicy...nt%20page.html

    The last two bikes on my list are a 50's Lenton Grand Prix and a '64 Raleigh Record.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    3,134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by redneckwes
    I don't know, I've had pretty good luck with used wheels, and Allways 27X1-1/4 for me, My last set, Araya's w Sanshin hubs came from the S/A on a $14 world sport. the freewheel is even useable.
    OK..if you can find good ones.I was emphisizing the NO-GO on the 700s,new $23-28 ones are better than the wrong wheels in the long-run.For the few bucks different,new seems sensible.

  7. #7
    Member Kyle in Maine's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Portland, the other one.
    My Bikes
    Some old Chicago Schwinns, Univega Fixed Gear, building a Surly LHT.
    Posts
    47
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    TCS - Thanks for the links, I'd seen some of Sheldon Brown's stuff, but the pics of the Varsity are great, is it yours?

    I think I am going to stick with 27", for now at least. After I posted I found some cheap Weinmann's on bikepartsusa.com (has anyone ordered from them? Website is pretty ghetto.) but has kind of put off by the Wheel Master hubs. Maybe that is just my inner bike snob coming out.

    I think I will keep my eye on the thrift stores, and yard sales season is fast approaching. Plus, I may even have some at my folks house. They love it when ever I take some of my "old junk" (their words, not mine) from the garage; a few more years and they may be able to fit a car in there.

    I'll keep you posted.

    Peace, Kyle
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
    Yet another vegan biker
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Trapped behind the corn curtain
    My Bikes
    Sakae Prism, Vintage Fuji bike(S), too many bikes, one from scratch bike.
    Posts
    965
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    >Araya's w Sanshin hubs came from the S/A on a $14 world sport. the freewheel is even useable.

    I've been very pleased with the sets of Sansin hubs that I used.

Posting Permissions

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