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Old 01-04-13, 07:11 PM   #1
rhenning
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1952/53 Varsity???.

I picked the bike in the pictures up this week and am not exactly sure of the year. Unfortunately the Serial number B84826 was used for both 1952 and 1953 Schwinns. It is on the left rear drop out. It is an interesting bike as it has a Brampton 3 speed hub and shifter instead of a Sturmey Archer. It was also put together like a British bike with the right hand controlling the front brake and the left hand the rear. I am thinking it might be a 1952 as the serial number fits in the 4/04 to 4/30/1952 number range but this is not a model I have played with before. Anyone that can help would be appreciated. Roger
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Old 01-04-13, 07:53 PM   #2
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My guess would be somewhere along the line a previous owner "upgraded" it with the English parts, and prob screwed up the brakes when repairing/replacing some parts of the braking mech.
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Old 01-04-13, 08:25 PM   #3
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I guess that is possible I just switched the cables back to the way I am more comfortalbe with. I also replaced the cable housings which had seen better days. The cable inner wires were like new as are the tires. Roger
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Old 01-04-13, 09:08 PM   #4
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Yeah, reason being is the brake housing is black and the shifter cable housing appears to be grey. If the bike was orig I think they all would/should have been the same color. I may be wrong but I never came across an orig three speed bike with different color brake housings. Still a sick sweet bike ya have there!
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Old 01-05-13, 01:39 AM   #5
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If it is the years your talking about. (I might be wrong) but off the top of my head I think the Varsity was introduced in 60 or 61.

Sounds like a good Frankenbike though. And there isn't anything wrong with that.
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Old 01-05-13, 05:15 AM   #6
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Interesting bike. It looks a lot like a "New World" I had a while back. Brampton gear hubs and shifters are extremely rare.
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Old 01-05-13, 07:58 AM   #7
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If it is the years your talking about. (I might be wrong) but off the top of my head I think the Varsity was introduced in 60 or 61.

Sounds like a good Frankenbike though. And there isn't anything wrong with that.
Those were the modern derailleur equipped Varsities. This is a decade older and are quite rare.
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Old 01-05-13, 08:37 AM   #8
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That is a rather interesting bicycle and looks to be in pretty nice overall condition for its age. Can you take some closeup pictures of the downtube graphics? I, like ftwelder, think it could be a swapped chainguard, but I'm not too familiar with Schwinn stuff so I could be entirely off.
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Old 01-05-13, 08:37 AM   #9
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My guess would be somewhere along the line a previous owner "upgraded" it with the English parts, and prob screwed up the brakes when repairing/replacing some parts of the braking mech.
There are also those out there who, like me, prefer their brakes be done properly: right lever for front brake, left lever for rear brake. I rode motorcycles for too many years and find it foreign to use the left lever for the front brake. Admittedly, I have a couple bikes where they're still set up like many here in the US are accustomed to, but it's because I've not gotten to switching them yet.
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Old 01-05-13, 08:44 AM   #10
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From what I have found out so far is most of the parts from a Brampton 3 speed will interchange with a SA. Cables, shifter, internals etc. Most of the places that I looked at also said the fit and finish of actual Brampton parts was better than the SA. As Bob said this is the older version of the Varsity was an upgrade on the World because of the 3 speed hub. I found a 1952 price list and the model was W11S and cost between $60 to $65 when new in 1952. The Varsity name did come back in 1960 with an 8 speed bike that by the end of 1961 was upgraded to a 10 speed. That was the same time as the 10 speed Continental showed up. There also was an earlier 3 speed Continental in the 1950s. The pictures are a 1960 Continental I own. Roger
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Old 01-05-13, 08:57 AM   #11
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Roger, this is the Varsity page from my 1954 dealer catalog. It has more details than the 1953 consumer catalog write-up (below).

You've got a really neat bike there!



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Old 01-05-13, 10:19 AM   #12
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OP, well it turned out in your favour! The bike was orig three speed and was upgraded with fine Brampton parts! Sweet!
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Old 01-05-13, 10:20 AM   #13
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There are also those out there who, like me, prefer their brakes be done properly: right lever for front brake, left lever for rear brake. I rode motorcycles for too many years and find it foreign to use the left lever for the front brake. Admittedly, I have a couple bikes where they're still set up like many here in the US are accustomed to, but it's because I've not gotten to switching them yet.
Ahhhhh, go back to....wherever your from you backwards turkey!
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Old 01-05-13, 10:41 AM   #14
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Chainguard only is from Varsity.
Headbadge and frame decals are the same as my 52 New World.
Front fork was unique to "New World" models if I recall correctly.
Still Sweet!
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Old 01-05-13, 10:55 AM   #15
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Again from my research the 1952 Varsity was an upgrade model of the World. New Worlds are prewar bike and I have a couple of them. After the war New Worlds became just Worlds. Some of the differences between prewar and postwar models include Pres had the seat post clamp welded to the frame and a bolt on kick stand where the post had a removable sear post clamp and a welded on kick stand. Pres also could be ordered with a 3 piece crankset. I will enclose a picture of my 1941 (last picture) with that and then also a couple more pictures of the 1952. Roger
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Old 01-05-13, 11:04 AM   #16
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Chainguard only is from Varsity.
Headbadge and frame decals are the same as my 52 New World.
Front fork was unique to "New World" models if I recall correctly.
Still Sweet!
When compared to the catolog pics rhennings bike looks to be all orig, (but for the three speed components) the fork looks nothing like a New World model, the New World fork has the "bullet". rhennings doesn't. and all the decals match the catolog pics as does all else on rhenning SHWEET Varsity!
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Old 01-05-13, 12:09 PM   #17
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Learn something every day... I too thought the Varsity from the very early 60s.
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Old 01-05-13, 12:41 PM   #18
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Brampton 1, 2, 3, 4.
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Old 01-05-13, 03:07 PM   #19
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Ahhhhh, go back to....wherever your from you backwards turkey!
He's not the only one... I have most of my bikes set up with right lever controlling the front brake.

Nice find on that Schwinn.

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Old 01-05-13, 04:28 PM   #20
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Tcs thanks for the Brammpton info. Roger
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Old 01-05-13, 07:45 PM   #21
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Roger, I got a blue World (single speed with coaster brake) for Christmas in, I believe, 1954. I had been hoping for a Varsity, but wound up loving the World. It was my first, err, um, lightweight bike.

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Old 01-06-13, 06:31 AM   #22
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Post war New World bicycles could also be ordered with a 3 piece crank and also a 3speed rear hub described in a post war catalog.
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Old 01-06-13, 10:48 AM   #23
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Great thread, I love the history rich threads....

Even glad I was wrong on the history of Varsity (won't be the first time I put my foot in my mouth, doubt it'll be the last)...Keeps me humble, but also opens up all the catalog threads. Totally worth the slightly blemished ego.
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