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  1. #1
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    1980's Schwinn Road Bike Hierarchy

    Can anyone remember the hierarchy of the Schwinn line-up in the late 1980's? I'm pretty sure the Paramount was at the top, followed by the Circuit, then the Prelude and Tempo (not sure of the order there) and eventually bikes like the World Sport.

    I'm particularly interested in the position of the Tempo, and if it was a step up, or a step down from the Prelude. I spontaneously bought a Tempo from eBay a few days ago, and since it has not yet arrived I've been trying to learn a little more about it on the internet but haven't found much.

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
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    A good resource for all things Schwinn is "oldroads.com" Ask your question at the lightweight forum and you are sure to get answers

  3. #3
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    Great link. Thanks!!

  4. #4
    The Rabbi seely's Avatar
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    We got in a LeTour today that seemed like it was probably midrange, with a decent frame, fairly light but diacompe/suntour components. Non indexed front/indexed rear if that helps any. Think its about an 87-ish?

  5. #5
    Uff Da!
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    Data point from the '89 Schwinn catalog; it looks like the the Tempo was one step above the Prelude. The Circuit was one step above the Tempo. There were three models with aluminimum frames(974, 754, 564). It's a little difficult to judge where they fit in the lineup as there are no prices in the catalog. At the top of the line were the Paramount and Prologue. These models look like they may have been sold as framesets only. If you can identify the year of the bike when you get it(look for four digit number stamped into headbadge) I may have the catalog for that year and can tell you more about it.

  6. #6
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    As I mentioned on oldroads.com, firstflightbikes.com has a comprehensive chart of 1980s Schwinn mountain bikes.

    "I ride a REAL Schwinn!"
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
    Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
    Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
    Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069

  7. #7
    Senior Member miamijim's Avatar
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    Something like: Sprint, World, Worldsport, Le Tour, Prelude, Tempo, Circuit, Aluminum, Prologue, Paramount...more or less depending on the years.

    Check the headtube for the model year. There are 4 really small little numbers on there. The first three correspond to the day of the year....not the month and day but the actual day. The 217th day not February 17th. The last is the year. No indexing? Sounds like pre-'87.
    WWW.CYCLESPEUGEOT.COM 2005 Pinarello Dogma; 1991 Paramount PDG 70 Mtb; 1976? AD Vent Noir; 1989 LeMond Maillot Juane F&F; 1993? Basso GAP F&F; 1989 Terry Symmetry; 2003 Trek 4700 Mtb; 1983 Vitus 979

  8. #8
    Treking photojtn's Avatar
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    I remember the Paramount was the top when I bought my Le Tour Luxe in 1986, Still ride it with not one problem ever, and still is in prestine condition.

  9. #9
    Senior Member smurfy's Avatar
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    Today I bought a Schwinn Premis from a collector friend of mine. According to the headbadge the frame was built on the 85th day of 1988. The color of the frame is three-tone dk blue/mauve/purple fade. Lugged Columbus Tenax tubing. RX 100 components which I'm not sure are original.

    Did the Premis replace the Prelude? My friend says that the Premis was under the Circuit so maybe the Tempo was discontinued that year? I haven't seen anything about the Premis here but I didn't want to start a new thread.
    "You handle it like you handle a bicycle" - Jacques Rosay, Airbus A380 test pilot

  10. #10
    Out of breath again. suntreader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miamijim
    Something like: Sprint, World, Worldsport, Le Tour, Prelude, Tempo, Circuit, Aluminum, Prologue, Paramount...more or less depending on the years.
    I remember a World Tour one notch above the World in the ealy 80's.

    I have a 1983 World with Shimano hardware... a little beat up, but still going strong.

  11. #11
    Uff Da!
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    The hierarchy of the sport bikes in the '88 catalog seems to be Avion(later renamed Ontare), Circuit, Tempo, Premis, Prelude, LeTour, Traveler, and World Sport. The Voyageur was in it's own category as a touring bike, and the Paramount and Prologue were in their own category as racing bikes sold as frame sets only. The Premis disappeared in the '89 catalog.

  12. #12
    Out of breath again. suntreader's Avatar
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    When was the last time Schwinn made an upper quality road bike, and what was it called?

  13. #13
    Senior Member smurfy's Avatar
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    Sierra,

    Thanks for the info. It's interesting that they discontinued the Premis name after only one year. Is that perhaps the name sounded too much like, you know, a man's "thingy" (can you say that word on Bike Forums?)!
    "You handle it like you handle a bicycle" - Jacques Rosay, Airbus A380 test pilot

  14. #14
    Uff Da!
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    Suntreader,
    As far as I know, Schwinn is still "making"(I'm sure they're outsourced) the Fastback series, with the Pro as the top of the line. I think these are regarded as pretty decent road bikes. They cost enough that they should be pretty good anyway.

  15. #15
    Senior Member kerk's Avatar
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    IMO the Fastback Pro is a very good buy for the money! Objectively speaking of course.
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    Proud owner of all three colors made! Orange, Blue , Yellow .

  16. #16
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    Sierra - you seem to be the Schwinn guru. Do you really have old Schwinn catalogs? I have a Schwinn 754 purchased in 1990. Looking for as much tech info as possible. Contemplating trying to upgrade it is my rainy day bike. Looking especially for a second expandable seatpost. Or, alternatively, is there a way to convert that seat-tube to a standard seatpost?

    Thanks.

  17. #17
    Uff Da!
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    I've got a pretty good collection of Schwinn catalogs covering from 1960 through 2001. Unfortunately, I have no real world experience with the 1990 754 model. I don't really understand what your question is. I don't have the 1990 catalog at my fingertips right now to look at the model. Is there something strange about the seat tube or or seatpost. I will have access to the catalog Monday morning.

  18. #18
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    Sierra:
    Schwinn used a weird seatpost in the 754. It was built like a threaded stem with a compression bolt that fit inside the seatpost instead of using a seatpost clamp. Now it's a pain, unless there is a way to retrofit a regular clamp.

    Thanks,
    Brendan

  19. #19
    Uff Da!
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    Brendan, ahh! I understand your dilemma now. I'm afraid I can't help you as I know nothing about newer bikes like this. Someone here should be able to help though.

    Lauren, your bike looks like an '87 model to me. Nice bike. What makes you think this is a women's model? Before I looked at your pic I was envisioning the women's specific frame that had the top tube that slanted down parallel to the down tube. 1973 was the last of those frames for the Super Sport.

  20. #20
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    1987 SCHWINN ROAD BIKE LINEUP

    - Paramount (weights varied by size and model)

    - Madison 19 lb. (Track bike)

    - Circuit 21 lb.

    - Super Sport 22 lb.

    - Tempo 22 lb.

    - Voyageur 24 lb. ("loaded" touring bike)


    Other Schwinn road bikes in 1987 were heavier models that used Hi-Ten forks, and other lower grade components. Schwinn catalog weights in the 1970's and 1980's were "honest" weights for medium size models, including the weight of the pedals used on that model.

  21. #21
    Immoderator KrisPistofferson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    1987 SCHWINN ROAD BIKE LINEUP

    - Paramount (weights varied by size and model)

    - Madison 19 lb. (Track bike)

    - Circuit 21 lb.

    - Super Sport 22 lb.

    - Tempo 22 lb.

    - Voyageur 24 lb. ("loaded" touring bike)


    Other Schwinn road bikes in 1987 were heavier models that used Hi-Ten forks, and other lower grade components. Schwinn catalog weights in the 1970's and 1980's were "honest" weights for medium size models, including the weight of the pedals used on that model.
    What about the Le Tour? Mine's an '87.
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  22. #22
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    Hey Lauren,

    22 lbs is pretty light for a steel bike. Fuji, Bianchi and Jamis still make steel road and touring bikes and they weigh about the same now as they did 30 years ago. Of course the carbon and Alu frames and forks are lighter, and much more popular.

    I wouldn't worry too much about finding parts for older bikes... they are around, both new and used. I also wouldn't waste any time or money *fixing* an old Shwinn. If you can't ride it *as is*, skip it. Beyond brake pads, cables, tubes and tires.... just find another bike. Lucky for you, the world is full of old bikes!

  23. #23
    Uff Da!
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    Lauren, unless the paint is in really bad shape(looks ok in the pic) or you hate the colors, I would not repaint the bike. Repainting usually detracts from the future collectable worth of a bike unless done by a pro and even then it often detracts. I don't know if this bike will ever have collectable value, but you never know. At 22 lbs. I'll bet it is a mighty fine riding road bike and you will be well pleased with it. Parts shouldn't be terribly hard to find for it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by lauren
    I'm looking at buying an old Schwinn Super Sport. Owner claims it is 12 to 15 years old. Does anyone know if Women's Super Sport road bikes were made during that time frame, or is it one of the much older ones (as I am starting to think)?

    https://instruct.unc.edu/wcb/schools...2796upload.JPG

    I will hopefully be bringing it home tomorrow if the condition is decent (looks like there is some rust on the bottom of the frame in the pic).
    The bike in the photo is identical to MY 1987 Super Sport. Mine also has rust where the seat tube meets the bottom bracket. It appears that someone forgot to clean off the brazing material around the lug before the frame were painted.

    This is NOT a "woman's bike", although its unique color is...well, it IS a unique color...

    Schwinn called this color "magenta". That same year (1987) Schwinn also offered bikes in "teal", "mauve", "scarlet", "mint", and "imperial rose". I am reminded of something I read about English bikes from around 1900: "Black is the only color that is suitable for a gentleman's machine".

    Aside from the color, the 87 Super Sport is a nice bike. Columbus Tenex frame. Tange fork. Shimano 600ex components. Cinelli handlebar and stem. About 22 pounds, fully equipped, including pedals. Only the Paramount and Circuit ranked higher among Schwinn's road bikes at the time.
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 02-12-05 at 03:54 AM.

  25. #25
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    Anyone know when the schwinn le tour was first made? I have a le tour on ebay and the serial number says b423456 which would make it 1964, but that does not sound right. thanks for any information. You can email me at: stevo@riverrats.net or check out my items on ebay at "stevonutria"

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