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  1. #1
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    1996 Womens 24" Schwinn Sidewinder. How Much to pay?

    Hi
    I am new to the forum and am hoping to get a little guidance on pricing for a bike I am thinking about buying. It belongs to a semi-retired former Schwinn dealer who I have been using to tune up my families bikes. It is a new 1996 Sidewinder that he had left over from his stock from back in his dealer days. It has a decal above the crank that states was made in Boulder Co. It also has a sticker commemorating 100 years of Schwinn (1895-1995) this is what makes me believe it is a 1996 model. It has never been sold and is in showroom shape. He is asking $175 but i'm thinking more along the lines of $100-125, but really have no idea what it is worth.
    Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.

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    http://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...nder&Type=bike

    If the bike is new I suspect $175 is not too bad a deal. The bike is 16 years old, though, and it's been a pretty busy 16 years of development in the bicycle industry.

    I find the claim dubious that they had a hi-tensile (very inexpensive and basic) frame made in the USA in the mid 1990s. Schwinn was one of the first companies to use Taiwanese companies for most of its production back in the '80s. They invested heavily in the Taiwanese bike manufacturing sector, which in turn spawned competitors and helped nail the coffin shut for Schwinn.
    From en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schwinn_Bicycle_Company:

    " The company took advantage of the continued demand for mountain bikes, redesigning its product line with Schwinn-designed chromoly steel frames. Sourced from manufacturers in Asia, the new arrangement enabled Schwinn to reduce costs and stay competitive with Asian bicycle companies. In Taiwan, Schwinn was able to conclude a new production agreement with Giant Bicycles, transferring Schwinn's frame design and manufacturing expertise to Giant in the process.[49] With this partnership, Schwinn increased their bicycle sales to 500,000 per year by 1985. Schwinn annual sales soon neared the million mark, and the company turned a profit in the late 1980s. However, after unsuccessfully attempting to purchase a minority share in Giant Bicycles, Edward Schwinn negotiated a separate deal with the China Bicycle Co. (CBC) to produce bicycles to be sold under the Schwinn brand.[50] In retaliation, Giant introduced its own line of Giant-branded bikes for sale to retailers carrying Schwinn bikes. Both Giant and CBC used the dies, plans, and technological expertise from Schwinn to greatly expand the market share of bicycles made under their own proprietary brands, first in Europe, and later in the United States.[50]

    By 1990, other U.S. bicycle companies with reputations for excellence in design such as Trek, Specialized, and Cannondale had cut further into Schwinn's market. Unable to produce bicycles in the U.S. at a competitive cost, by the end of 1991 Schwinn was sourcing its bicycles from overseas manufacturers."

  3. #3
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    Re: 1996 Sidewinder

    [QUOTE=LarDasse74;13856970]http://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...nder&Type=bike

    "If the bike is new I suspect $175 is not too bad a deal. The bike is 16 years old, though, and it's been a pretty busy 16 years of development in the bicycle industry.

    I find the claim dubious that they had a hi-tensile (very inexpensive and basic) frame made in the USA in the mid 1990s. Schwinn was one of the first companies to use Taiwanese companies for most of its production back in the '80s. They invested heavily in the Taiwanese bike manufacturing sector, which in turn spawned competitors and helped nail the coffin shut for Schwinn."


    First of all, thanks for your input! I am looking to but the bike for my 11 year old daughter, so while not having the latest in design technology, I thought this might be a fairly good quality ride for her until she is old enough to get the bike of her choosing. I think that if I can get it for around the same price as a "wal mart bike" that the trade off between higher quality and newer technology may be worth it.
    As for the made in Boulder sticker, I was reading that in low light without my glasses, so I very well could have mis-read it. I was able to find some Schwinn pamphlets from 1996 online that refer to "Homegrown" frames made in the U.S.A. (whether this bike falls into that catagory I don't know?)
    Once again thanks for your reply

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    It will be a great kids bike. It is probably similar in quality to a $150 X-Mart bike, but it will be lovingly assembled by the hands of the master, not slapped together by an illegal immigrant that gets locked in the Walmart at night with no fire escape.

    THe 'Homegrown' series was their higher end stuff for racing. However, I could be wrong about all this - I was wrong about something once before... well, at least I thought I was, but I was mistaken.

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    24" frame sounds extremely large for an 11yr old. Or were you reffering to the wheel size?
    might want to double check actual bike fit before proceeding.

    Any rate, without actually looking further at the bike I wouldn't pay anything more than 50$, as the 24"wheel combined with the schwinn label scream walmart to me.
    Then again, this is for a kid; no need for quality when they'll outgrow it anyway right?

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    I have an LBS Sidewinder that my daughter rode for years and I do mean RODE, ours is a 26" wheel with a 14" frame. Good quality bike and if the one you are looking at is a true bike shop bike and in new condition the $175 is not over the top. But feel free to offer less, the worst that will happen is he will say no.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xenologer View Post
    Any rate, without actually looking further at the bike I wouldn't pay anything more than 50$, as the 24"wheel combined with the schwinn label scream walmart to me.
    1996 was well before Schwinn became an X-Mart brand. If it is 24" wheels, this would have been a good quality kids bike in an LBS. If it had 26" wheels it would have been an entry-level adult bike in an LBS. MSRP was ~$300 for the adult model.

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    In 1996, the Schwinn Sidewinder was a low end, hi-tensile steel bike with only mediocre componentry. The seat tube was made of chromoly steel. If it costs $300 back then, over fifteen years ago, it's worth only what the buyer and seller can agree upon, today.

    Personally, I wouldn't spend over $100 for it...

    - Slim
    Last edited by SlimRider; 02-19-12 at 12:01 AM.

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    I was thinking along the same lines as you SlimRider. I plan on stopping in on Monday and offering $100 for the bike with $125 being my top offer.

    As for the authenticity of the bike, I have known the seller long enough to know that he is giving me the straight scoop. Also, the little research that I have done on the internet shows that Schwinn at that time relocated their headquarters to Boulder(not that the bike was made there) thus explaining the sticker. Just looking at it also tells me that the styling is not consistent with the modern big box Sidewinder.

    Thanks to everyone who has replied to my original post. It is nice to have a place where a person who is just getting back into riding at the age of 49 can get some guidance from people that are a little more in tune with the sport. If I end up getting the Sidewinder for my daughter I will be sure to post back and let everyone know how it turns out.

    Thanks
    Gary

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    Quote Originally Posted by xenologer View Post
    24" frame sounds extremely large for an 11yr old. Or were you reffering to the wheel size? might want to double check actual bike fit before proceeding.
    I was going to say this just as a point of information: I'm 6'4" and ride a roughly 24-inch bike (63cm). You're probably talking about wheel size, which doesn't always correspond to frame size. Check the fit.
    Otherwise, it sounds to me like an OK kid's bike, though I have some trouble believing he's held onto it for 16 years.

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