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Old 12-30-11, 11:19 PM   #1
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1939 Schwinn Paramount... any help?

How hard would this be to restore? with as correct as possible parts? any info on this bike would be much appreciated, its hard to find any at all....

thanks guys
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Old 12-30-11, 11:23 PM   #2
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Wow.
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Old 12-30-11, 11:38 PM   #3
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Wow.
my same reaction....
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Old 12-31-11, 12:10 AM   #4
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There's some pretty good paint under the grime. Understandably, it is not perfect, but definitely worth keeping intact due to the survivor status of this Paramount. Without a doubt, it'll also be the cheapest method to finish the project.

Give the paint a scrubbing with Meguiars Scratch X. Be careful around pinstriping and decals. Go over the chrome with fine, bronze wool (ACE Hardware will have this), followed by Flitz or similar metal polish.

Assuming all the bearing races are good, simply clean them up, regrease, and re-assemble.

EDIT: The worst of the chrome must be cleaned via oxalic acid; also known as wood bleach crystals. Get a small plastic bin, fill it with water, dump a teaspoon of the crystals in the water, and mix them thoroughly. Place chromed parts in the bath - make sure to take them apart (in the case of the stem, remove the wedge, bolt, and anything else), and NEVER put aluminum, zinc, or galvanized parts in the oxalic bath (that's why you take everything apart; to make sure you don't contaminate the bath). Wait a bit; maybe 30 minutes to an hour. Remove part and dump it in an identical bath with baking soda to neutralize it - then bronze wool the remaining rust; it'll come off very easily.

-Kurt
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Old 12-31-11, 12:13 AM   #5
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There's some pretty good paint under the grime. Understandably, it is not perfect, but definitely worth keeping intact due to the survivor status of this Paramount. Without a doubt, it'll also be the cheapest method to finish the project.

Give the paint a scrubbing with Meguiars Scratch X. Be careful around pinstriping and decals. Go over the chrome with fine, bronze wool (ACE Hardware will have this), followed by Flitz or similar metal polish.

Assuming all the bearing races are good, simply clean them up, regrease, and re-assemble.

-Kurt
+1 - this bike deserves to remain as original as possible.

(I'm in San Leandro, by the way. Let me know if I can do anything for this project!)
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Old 12-31-11, 12:24 AM   #6
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There's some pretty good paint under the grime. Understandably, it is not perfect, but definitely worth keeping intact due to the survivor status of this Paramount. Without a doubt, it'll also be the cheapest method to finish the project.

Give the paint a scrubbing with Meguiars Scratch X. Be careful around pinstriping and decals. Go over the chrome with fine, bronze wool (ACE Hardware will have this), followed by Flitz or similar metal polish.

Assuming all the bearing races are good, simply clean them up, regrease, and re-assemble.

EDIT: The worst of the chrome must be cleaned via oxalic acid; also known as wood bleach crystals. Get a small plastic bin, fill it with water, dump a teaspoon of the crystals in the water, and mix them thoroughly. Place chromed parts in the bath - make sure to take them apart (in the case of the stem, remove the wedge, bolt, and anything else), and NEVER put aluminum, zinc, or galvanized parts in the oxalic bath (that's why you take everything apart; to make sure you don't contaminate the bath). Wait a bit; maybe 30 minutes to an hour. Remove part and dump it in an identical bath with baking soda to neutralize it - then bronze wool the remaining rust; it'll come off very easily.

-Kurt
fantastic! thanks a lot, this is going to be a project that I'd like to take the time to do correctly.

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+1 - this bike deserves to remain as original as possible.

(I'm in San Leandro, by the way. Let me know if I can do anything for this project!)
My exact feeling; I'd love to see it looking like it did 72 years ago... haha
(I'm actually in San Leandro as well surprisingly, I will definitely let you know!)
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Old 12-31-11, 12:29 AM   #7
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I soak my rusty chrome parts in white vinegar over night, next morning the rust washes off with a wet cloth, no neutralizing or remaining rust! =0) Not knockin' Cudak888, he knows what he's talking about, Just sayin' ;0)
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Old 12-31-11, 12:29 AM   #8
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fantastic! thanks a lot, this is going to be a project that I'd like to take the time to do correctly.
If it's all there and intact, you should be able to have it together in 7 days work. Polishing and cleaning will take more time than putting it back together.

Do remember to pick up some nice replacement tubular tires. Even though the skinwall Vittoria tires in most bike shops appear to be the most attractive option for the vintage look, they don't sit well. Try your luck with a better set of skinwall tubulars online - I'm sure the gents here will have suggestions.

-Kurt
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Old 12-31-11, 12:31 AM   #9
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That service tag looks a wee bit familiar - any chance that bike came out of the deep recesses of Mr. Robinson's shop?
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Old 12-31-11, 12:39 AM   #10
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That service tag looks a wee bit familiar - any chance that bike came out of the deep recesses of Mr. Robinson's shop?
I can't say that it does. My grandfather owned a Schwinn store back in the early 60's, and this happened to roll in one day... he ended up owning it several minutes later, and now he would like me to restore it for him.
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Old 12-31-11, 12:40 AM   #11
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You should talk to Scooper...

Scooper's 1938 Paramount track bike
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Old 12-31-11, 12:54 AM   #12
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You should talk to Scooper...

Scooper's 1938 Paramount track bike
wow thats gorgeous...
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Old 12-31-11, 01:32 AM   #13
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I'm not knocking Stan's frame - it's beautiful, and it's previous condition required the restoration - but there are too many other, over-restored frames out there to send this one to that fate.

Don't repaint it. "Restore" it by refurbishing it, and removing any unnecessary grime that does not deserve to be called "patina." Think of Jay Leno's 1927 Dusenberg Model X - polished, serviced, and repaired - but otherwise original:



Of note, it's virtually impossible to find any still photos of this car online. There seems to be an idiotic belief in the collectible automobile world that everything must be subject to overrestoration, or it's not worth paying attention to. Ridiculous.

-Kurt

P.S.: The chromed headtube is very unusual.
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Old 12-31-11, 01:40 AM   #14
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wow thats gorgeous...
I would agree with Kurt that your frame does not need this level of restoration and would think that many of us do not have pockets deep enough to pull something like this off anyways.

There is a beauty in keeping things as original as possible and preserving what you have... it is only original once and think Kurt and I both have some bicycle that some might want to send to the painters and we just keep them as they are.
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Old 12-31-11, 01:44 AM   #15
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it is only original once and think Kurt and I both have some bicycle that some might want to send to the painters and we just keep them as they are.
I would no sooner send your '54 Sports or '55 Lenton to the painters than my own '61 Paramount P12. They deserve to remain as they are - refurbished, cleaned, but original.

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Old 12-31-11, 01:53 AM   #16
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thats the right idea, i personally like refurbished look, so i think i'll just clean the hell out of it, and not do anything drastic.

regarding the headtube: Did they come that way? seems strange for the original owner to have stripped and polished only the headtube.
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Old 12-31-11, 06:55 AM   #17
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Wow, that is beautiful! Just remember that once you clan and reassemble it....ride it!
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Old 12-31-11, 07:25 AM   #18
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thats the right idea, i personally like refurbished look, so i think i'll just clean the hell out of it, and not do anything drastic.

regarding the headtube: Did they come that way? seems strange for the original owner to have stripped and polished only the headtube.
I cannot believe no one has asked, "What is the serial number?"

Regarding the chrome headtube. I've seen this vintage Paramount completely chromed. Looking closely at this photo, it looks as if there is chrome under the paint here at the toptube/seatstay area. I wonder if your grandfather's Paramount was originally all chrome, and painted this way by Schwinn.



Here's the Chrome early Paramount.



But did you notice the difference in the caps on the seatstays? (Stan Cooper's Waterford refinished Paramount)



Kind of weird?
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Old 12-31-11, 08:28 AM   #19
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I'm not knocking Stan's frame - it's beautiful, and it's previous condition required the restoration - but there are too many other, over-restored frames out there to send this one to that fate.

Don't repaint it. "Restore" it by refurbishing it, and removing any unnecessary grime that does not deserve to be called "patina." Think of Jay Leno's 1927 Dusenberg Model X - polished, serviced, and repaired - but otherwise original:



Of note, it's virtually impossible to find any still photos of this car online. There seems to be an idiotic belief in the collectible automobile world that everything must be subject to overrestoration, or it's not worth paying attention to. Ridiculous.

-Kurt

P.S.: The chromed headtube is very unusual.
Hear! hear!
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Old 12-31-11, 08:55 AM   #20
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thats the right idea, i personally like refurbished look, so i think i'll just clean the hell out of it, and not do anything drastic.

regarding the headtube: Did they come that way? seems strange for the original owner to have stripped and polished only the headtube.
Excellent - I think you'll enjoy the original look. It is much more satisfactory, and gives you a feeling of being connected with the bike's past.

I have no reason to doubt that it came that way. Schwinn did some oddballs in the early years. Case in point, there's an early all-chrome second-gen in the registry that has a red headtube - special order.

Take care,

-Kurt
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Old 12-31-11, 09:10 AM   #21
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Youve got a project Im truly jealous of, and I dont say that often... I don't see bars there... you have them or need to find them....? Looks like you have most of the hardest parts to find like the hubs, cranks and stem
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Old 12-31-11, 09:24 AM   #22
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The seat stay caps was the first image I opened, that and the chrome head tube was next. This bike got special attention way back, too bad the records are toast.
Some bikes deserve repaint. This one does not.
Orange tubulars are around, I think I just saw some by Wobler on ebait recently. Possibly on one of Baron Corpuz's alias storefronts. Or, you could call The Bici on State in Santa Barbara. Or drive down for a nice weekend.
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Old 12-31-11, 10:33 AM   #23
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There seems to be an idiotic belief in the collectible automobile world that everything must be subject to overrestoration, or it's not worth paying attention to. Ridiculous.
While I agree with everything else you wrote, this is just plain silly. 20+ years ago I was a lacky in the car "restoration" business. At that time, preservation was more desireable than restoration. And it was more expensive to preserve rather than restore because the techniques needed were much more time consuming. It's easy to sandblast, hammer, bondo and paint. But try removing a dent without harming the paint - that takes incredible effort.

While I would agree a 100 point restoration is over done, there has always been a premium for a preserved car for at least the last 20 years.

Again, there is no need to "restore" this bike. Remove any oxidation and any oxidizing agents put some wax on it to keep out any new oxidizing agents and call it a day. 90% can be done with Dawn soap and water.
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Old 12-31-11, 11:03 AM   #24
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While I agree with everything else you wrote, this is just plain silly. 20+ years ago I was a lacky in the car "restoration" business. At that time, preservation was more desireable than restoration. And it was more expensive to preserve rather than restore because the techniques needed were much more time consuming. It's easy to sandblast, hammer, bondo and paint. But try removing a dent without harming the paint - that takes incredible effort.

While I would agree a 100 point restoration is over done, there has always been a premium for a preserved car for at least the last 20 years.
No doubt. I was not contesting that preservation is a particular art form in that field, but it has come to a point wherein an entire car will get repainted just because a valance panel has too many paint chips.

As you note, preservation was more desirable than restoration at that time, 20 years ago. Classic car media outlets have been very successful in polluting the public's mind as of recent years.

-Kurt
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Old 12-31-11, 11:03 AM   #25
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I am also in San Leandro. I have a surplus of oxalic acid crystals if you need some I will hook you up.
Chris
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