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  1. #1
    Senior Member Fissile's Avatar
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    Gas Pipe Schwinn: The Thing That Wouldn't Die

    So I was checking out some pictures from today's "Occupation Wall St" protest when I see this:



    It appears that this protester is riding a 70's vintage Schwinn Continental with flipped drop bars! If these bikes can survive for 40 years in NYC, they truly are indestructible.
    Last edited by Fissile; 10-01-11 at 06:01 PM.
    Critical Mass

  2. #2
    Canadian Chick Aquakitty's Avatar
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    I'm sure there are loads of those in NYC and they probably sell for $300 each!

  3. #3
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    I volunteer at a bike co-op that sees lots of Varsities and other low-end Schwinn come in the door. They certainly are very durable bicycles. Most of the components are still functioning after those 40 years, so it's often just a matter of grease and cables to get them back on the road.


    Most repairs aren't difficult either. The one piece crank/BB is pretty easy to work on. Derailleurs are easy to adjust.

    The bad side of them is the 40 pounds they weigh. They probably make great grocery getters and are wonderful for protests and occupations as above... they're actually bomb-proof too.

  4. #4
    holyrollin' FlatTop's Avatar
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    I was astonished at the number of vintage bikes locked up on the street in NYC. Somebody's everyday ride to work I'd guess. Most weren't that spit-and-polish, but respectable. Lots of bikes being ridden, everything from beaters to fixies to nice originals. And recently, a lot of electric bikes.

  5. #5
    Learning to Roll hamanu23's Avatar
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    Droid 559 by Lucas James 78, on Flickr

    Droid 555 by Lucas James 78, on Flickr

    I just rode a century on my gas pipe 77 Le Tour II, I love this bike!

  6. #6
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    With painted forks and centerpull brakes, the bike pictured is probably a Continental, the worst parts of which are the heavy steel rims. The really cool vintage Schwinn is of course the Super Sport, which can be brought down to a tolerable 30lbs w/ aluminum cranks.
    "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 Fissile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hamanu23 View Post
    I just rode a century on my gas pipe 77 Le Tour II, I love this bike!
    Um......dude, The Le Tour is not "gas pipe".
    Critical Mass

  8. #8
    Senior Member Fissile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    With painted forks and centerpull brakes, the bike pictured is probably a Continental, the worst parts of which are the heavy steel rims. The really cool vintage Schwinn is of course the Super Sport, which can be brought down to a tolerable 30lbs w/ aluminum cranks.
    Um......dude, the Super Sport isn't "gas pipe". They were fillet brazed.
    Critical Mass

  9. #9
    )) <> (( illwafer's Avatar
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    super sports were all over the map. my 81 is tange 2 with lugs.

  10. #10
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    With painted forks and centerpull brakes, the bike pictured is probably a Continental, the worst parts of which are the heavy steel rims. The really cool vintage Schwinn is of course the Super Sport, which can be brought down to a tolerable 30lbs w/ aluminum cranks.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fissile View Post
    Um......dude, the Super Sport isn't "gas pipe". They were fillet brazed.
    Actually he did not say "gas pipe".
    - Auchen

  11. #11
    Dog is my co-pilot 2manybikes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fissile View Post
    So I was checking out some pictures from today's "Occupation Wall St" protest when I see this:
    It appears that this protester is riding a 70's vintage Schwinn Continental with flipped drop bars! If these bikes can survive for 40 years in NYC, they truly are indestructible.
    I have one, same color, bars in the right place. $5 yard sale, no rust. Lots of little touch up paint spots, you can't tell unless you look really close.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  12. #12
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    japanese le tours were most cro-mo I thought.. american ones like mine are heavy like rocks.
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


    ― Ralph Waldo Emerson, Emerson in His Journals

  13. #13
    Anachronist.
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    My Le Tour is Japanese, with the Suntour/Shimano Gruppo and Araya 700c wheels it weighs about 25lbs. With the racks, fenders, lights, computer and saddle bag it's about 30.

    My Continental is almost 10lbs heavier with just the basic components. It is indestructible however.
    '81 Schwinn Le Tour, '74 Schwinn Continental

  14. #14
    Senior Member flash2070's Avatar
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    I bought this SS today at a garage sale. The owner had it in a shed in his back yard. Needs tires and a nice cleaning to remove the surface oxidation, but other than that the frame is in very good condition. I cant wait to ride it! Definitely not gas pipe!



    Flash

  15. #15
    Crawlin' up, flyin' down bikingshearer's Avatar
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    Varsinentals, cockroaches, Twinkies and Volvo 240s. After the nuclear holocaust or the comet strikes Earth, these are the things that will survive.

    So, 100,000 years from now, will there a BF for cockroaches who ride Varsities and Continentals complaining about getting doored and right-hooked by cockroaches driving old Volvos?
    "I'm in shape -- round is a shape." Andy Rooney

  16. #16
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    (to above, forgot to hit quote)

    I have no idea, but I wouldn't doubt some of that. I weighed my Varsity last week, and it is within a pound of my 07 Voyageur. I can't imagine what would happen if I switched to alloy wheels from the original steel ones... The Varsity is my 'backup' ride, and the Voyageuer is only around because of the bike trailer, and I might even switch the coupler for the trailer to the Varsity... not sure the gears would like that though. My son is almost too big for that anyways...
    Primary: 2011 KHS Flite 223: 150 miles
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    'bike that is lucky to still be here': 2007 Schwinn voyageur: 1050 miles
    'bike that someone let back in the house': unknown Royce-Union ST 100
    (updated 10/13/11)

  17. #17
    Senior Member simran's Avatar
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    I used to ride an old 72 Sport Tourer I had it sandblasted and was getting ready to paint it. I had it in the barn and the barn burned down. I nearly cried. I loved that bike. I'm still looking for another one!!

  18. #18
    Senior Member DavidW56's Avatar
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    By far, the most likely brand of vintage bike I'll find at the yard sales are entry-level Schwinns. I'm convinced it's due not just to their popularity at the time, but their durability. There were millions of bikes made by other American brands -- Huffy, Columbia, Murray, Ross -- but fewer of them remain.
    Schwinn - World's Finest Bicycles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by simran View Post
    I used to ride an old 72 Sport Tourer I had it sandblasted and was getting ready to paint it. I had it in the barn and the barn burned down. I nearly cried. I loved that bike. I'm still looking for another one!!
    I have a 72 sport tourer built in 71. It has 54/36 chainring and is orange. Chrome is pitted and i tried to clean the rims. What size do you need? Where are you located? Has a brooks B15 saddle that can be cleaned up. Paint is dull but with very few chips, can be cleaned and polished. Decals are in great shape.
    Last edited by LAriverRat; 10-02-11 at 12:49 AM. Reason: more info

  20. #20
    FBoD Member at Large khatfull's Avatar
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    ...that wouldn't die.

  21. #21
    Bicycle Repairman kingsting's Avatar
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    As long as tires, tubes, cables, and brake pads are available for them, Chicago Schwinns will live on...
    There's always room for one more bike!

  22. #22
    Senior Member
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    heck, tires and tubes are easy to find, brake pads... well, heck, even those are easy. About those cables.... they just roll with whatever you find. As long as they make nice simple cables for bikes that don't need the fancy stuff (heck, probably even those could be made to work) it's all good. Now, of course you probably want to get a new seatpost, 13/16th I think is the schwinn size, and for about 5 bucks you can get a new one that lets you use modern saddles instead of the funky little end the Voyageur had, and if you really try, you can find pedals that accept toe clips in 1/2 size, and even get yourself toe clips.
    Primary: 2011 KHS Flite 223: 150 miles
    Secondary: 1974 Schwinn Varsity: 113.42 miles (that I am responsible for)
    'bike that is lucky to still be here': 2007 Schwinn voyageur: 1050 miles
    'bike that someone let back in the house': unknown Royce-Union ST 100
    (updated 10/13/11)

  23. #23
    Senior Member Flying Merkel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sathor View Post
    ...............Now, of course you probably want to get a new seatpost, 13/16th I think is the schwinn size, and for about 5 bucks you can get a new one that lets you use modern saddles instead of the funky little end the Voyageur had...........
    Where can I get this wonderous item? My Varsity-based cruiser (look at my avatar) has issues with the seat being unable to stay in one spot. I have stuffed beer can shims in the clamp but it still wants to tilt.

    The bike is a '64. It's actually a practical bike to hop on and take a fun ride in flatish country. Even handles dirt trails. I love the electroforged Schwinns for what they are, instead of hating them for what they are not.

  24. #24
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Merkel View Post
    I love the electroforged Schwinns for what they are, instead of hating them for what they are not.
    That's a great sig line!
    - Stan

  25. #25
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Merkel View Post
    Where can I get this wonderous item? My Varsity-based cruiser (look at my avatar) has issues with the seat being unable to stay in one spot. I have stuffed beer can shims in the clamp but it still wants to tilt.

    The bike is a '64. It's actually a practical bike to hop on and take a fun ride in flatish country. Even handles dirt trails. I love the electroforged Schwinns for what they are, instead of hating them for what they are not.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00139Z3JA is the one I bought, it did have a different marking of some sort on it, but it works perfectly as far as I can tell. I got an OEM GT saddle and stuck it on there, took under a minute to do it. (wasn't stuck, went really well)

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001C6BJDS are the pedals I got and put the toe clips on, (1/2 in size of course)
    Primary: 2011 KHS Flite 223: 150 miles
    Secondary: 1974 Schwinn Varsity: 113.42 miles (that I am responsible for)
    'bike that is lucky to still be here': 2007 Schwinn voyageur: 1050 miles
    'bike that someone let back in the house': unknown Royce-Union ST 100
    (updated 10/13/11)

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