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Old 06-22-11, 09:04 AM   #1
wrk101
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Show Us Your Series Paramounts!!

OK, they certainly are not Waterford or Chicago built, but Schwinn imported some nice bikes and put the Paramount name on them. They only show up in the catalogs for two years (1991 and 1992). By 1993, Schwinn changed the numbering system. I consider my 1987 Prologue to be a precursor to the Paramount series line, it was made by National/Panasonic.


It is my understanding that the higher end ones were built by National/Panasonic, the lower series were built by other suppliers (I think my 1991 Series 3 was made in Taiwan). One place where Schwinn really scrimped on these bikes were the components. My Series 3 came with RX100 components (WTF?) and my Series V came with Shimano 105. IMHO, the Series 5 was certainly worthy of Shimano 600 components.

I just sort of finished my 1992 Series 5. I believe it was built by Panasonic. I love the paint, got some purple bottle cages on order. They call this color scheme: "White with Purple Slime". I think I would have used a different term than Slime if I was in the marketing department. Regardless, I like the combo.

I changed out the bars, stem and seat post, didn't care for the black cromoly stem, and I had some nice Cinelli stuff laying in the parts bin. The bike is mostly Ultegra, with 8 speed Shimano 600 STI, and Shimano 105 wheels (I have an Ultegra wheelset to mount later). I could also do better on tires, but these were already mounted, so I will used them for a while.

I know Robbie has a Series 7. Anyone have a Series 9C??





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Old 06-22-11, 09:20 AM   #2
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Mods, can you move this to the C & V section?
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Old 06-22-11, 10:55 AM   #3
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Looks like I might have your little brother










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Old 06-22-11, 02:06 PM   #4
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Boy, yours is in outstanding shape! My one complaint is the cheesy way Schwinn had the decals put on this bike. They are stuck right over the paint, interrupting the purple color, and looking like a real afterthought at best.
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Old 06-22-11, 05:01 PM   #5
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I just purchased a Series 7. I'm impressed with the apparent quality of the frame. The lugs are nice and there are cool star reinforcements for the bottle cage mounts and brake bridge. The paint has held up well and is a nice blue/violet color. It appears it originally came with Shimano 600 components, sort of gray, perhaps known as "tricolor" for the flag-like emblem. Also has the ugly black cro-mo stem. Does anyone know the original rear spacing ? Mine seems to be about 128, wider than 126 but a squeeze for 130. It's apart now for cleaning and frame saver, so I'll post pix later.
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Old 06-22-11, 07:03 PM   #6
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Should be 126. A 130 should fit fine. I have a 130 on my Series 5 above, and also on my 1987 Prologue.
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Old 06-22-11, 07:10 PM   #7
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I just recently sold my series PDG with the red/white/blue color scheme. I really liked the frame but I liked the Colnago Mix I picked instead. I believe these were only sold as just a frameset and don't even list them in any brochure. I've seen just a few of them with that color let alone just a "Series PDG" with no numeral designation indication it was an early PDG Paramount.
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Old 06-22-11, 07:10 PM   #8
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No doubt about it on the decals being an afterthought Bill.
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Old 06-22-11, 07:12 PM   #9
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In the catalog, all the frame descriptions are identical, but the Series 2 and 3 were Taiwan-made. The Series 5 and 7 were made in Japan. Schwinn did send a man there to supervise frame production. The Paramount Design Group spent a lot of time and money developing their balance of OS tubing size vs. wall thickness. Maybe too much, and they moved production to Japan basically when it was too late to really save much money by doing so. The peak of that curve was late '89, in hindsight.

It's my guess that the money spent on R&D and frames caused the well to be a little empty when it came time to toss groups on the bikes. The Series 2 actually came with Shimano 500EX. I think the 3 came with the RX100, the 5 with 105, and the 7 came with 600 tricolor. The 7 was one of the first OEM bikes to come with STI.

The Series 7 came in both 700c models with 53/39 cranks and 650c models with 56/42 cranks. I've never seen a Shimano 56t chain ring, but the catalog shows one. The catalog has a nice explanation by some guy as to why the 650c models were good. Not a lot of people seemed to buy into it, but if you're a masher, that's a great bike for you.

The 9C was a rebadged Kestrel 200. Follow-up Kestrels had a wider/flatter BB shell, I think, and it must have made a difference, as people who buy the older Kestrels seem to want the flat-sided BB shell. I doubt Schwinn sold a lot of 9C's. I've never seen one, though I've seen a number of the Kestrel 200's.

The frames are pretty nice, even the 2 and 3. The Tange rep at NAHBS last year told me that a lot of the later Tange forks were made of Prestige tubing because it was easier for Tange at the time. The black chro-mo stem was also Tange Prestige. A close look at the forks shows a more aero shape than people realize, I think; definitely not the oval found on many other Tange forks.

I don't quite understand the thoughts behind the decals. The late '80s decals were so elegant and fairly understated, and then the 91-92 decals were huge and cumbersome by comparison. Perhaps it was cost.

There doesn't seem to be a heck of a lot of difference in the frames, but my 7 does seem better finished off than the 3, though it may just be the type of paint. Red back then seemed to be thicker. The 650c Series 7 had some of the most interesting intentional splotches of paint I've seen on a bike, almost like the pattern that a drop of oil makes in water. They're only on the fork and front of the frame.


I consider the frames to be nice successors to the Ironman frames, good Tange tubing and excellent all-around geometry.
I like both of mine, and would really only trade my red one for an Ironman frame of the same size and color.

The Series 3 was from a trade with rat fink, and the Series 7 courtesy of a deal with junkfoodjunkie at NAHBS.
I'm still grateful to both of them for the fun they've provided.




I know where there's a Series 5 in my size....just don't have the cajones to pull the trigger. Frameset only.
Same guy has an identical Series 2 to mine, also in 56cm...
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Old 06-22-11, 08:09 PM   #10
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I like what you did on that series 3. Maybe I'll keep mine. I still have one more set of 105 bits and 105 8 speed STI.
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Old 06-22-11, 08:29 PM   #11
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Good thread. Keep it coming, people, I know there's more of these out there.

I definitely love the freaky paint jobs on these things but agree the decals suck. I hope to find one of these someday, but figure the Paramount name won't exactly help them be undervalued (at least in these parts, I remember some of you saying you got great deals on these bikes).
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Old 06-22-11, 09:50 PM   #12
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I hate these threads...
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Old 06-22-11, 10:08 PM   #13
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These are really nice. The second one is clean--does it get ridden? Campy rims laced to 105 hubs=great.
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Old 06-22-11, 10:22 PM   #14
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Boy, yours is in outstanding shape! My one complaint is the cheesy way Schwinn had the decals put on this bike. They are stuck right over the paint, interrupting the purple color, and looking like a real afterthought at best.
yea, definitely don't want to interrupt that purple SLIME!!
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Old 06-22-11, 11:06 PM   #15
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Should be 126. A 130 should fit fine. I have a 130 on my Series 5 above, and also on my 1987 Prologue.
I think the Series 7 would be a 130, since it came with 8-sp STI.
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Old 06-22-11, 11:37 PM   #16
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Mine is going through some changes. ' will post a current pic later.

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Old 06-23-11, 12:06 AM   #17
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These are really nice. The second one is clean--does it get ridden? Campy rims laced to 105 hubs=great.
Unfortunately she doesn't get ridden, too small. When I purchased her off Craigslist, it appeared to my untrained eyes she had very few miles on her. There might be a tiny scratch somewhere on her, if there is, its not very visible.
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Old 06-23-11, 09:46 AM   #18
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Do you guys know what wheels the series 5 came with, I picked one up this winter that I'm going to build up for myself when time permits, it appears all original except a set of mismatched wheels. I bought from a flipper who I think bought it for the wheelset maybe. Thanks for any info you may be able to pass on to me.
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Old 06-23-11, 10:24 AM   #19
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Do you guys know what wheels the series 5 came with, I picked one up this winter that I'm going to build up for myself when time permits, it appears all original except a set of mismatched wheels. I bought from a flipper who I think bought it for the wheelset maybe. Thanks for any info you may be able to pass on to me.
Mine came with Campagnolo Ofmega rims laced to Shimano 105.
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Old 06-23-11, 01:02 PM   #20
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Mine came with Campagnolo Ofmega rims laced to Shimano 105.

+1.
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Old 06-23-11, 01:24 PM   #21
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Thanks for the info!
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Old 06-23-11, 02:01 PM   #22
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Man, some truly sweet looking bikes!!! As Southpaw implied, I can just imagine what those bikes would cost here!
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Old 06-23-11, 02:04 PM   #23
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Mine is going through some changes. ' will post a current pic later.

What sort of saddle is that, if you don't mine me asking.
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Old 06-23-11, 02:57 PM   #24
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Series 5 PDG - A flip because she was too small.

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Old 06-23-11, 03:47 PM   #25
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I hate these threads...
? Not a late-era Schwinn fan? Dislike any but the "true" Paramounts? Can't find one like me?
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Man, some truly sweet looking bikes!!! As Southpaw implied, I can just imagine what those bikes would cost here!
Everytime I see "Paramount" on CL I get excited before realizing chances are it'll be a Paramountain, Paramount Mountain Bike, or a fixie'd PDG aluminum "754aramount".
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