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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 05-16-07, 05:57 PM   #1
brandonehansen
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73 Varsity vs. 60's/70's Continental

Does anyone know any differences in the Varsity and Continental road bikes? They seem to be great looking and have similar mechanics, but not sure if one is better than the other.
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Old 05-16-07, 05:59 PM   #2
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Varsities are electroforged and heavy as hell. Continentals (most of them at least) are lugged and much lighter. Google if you don't know what those terms mean and you'll find out why it matters.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:01 PM   #3
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Don't waste your time with either. You'd be much happier with any 80s decent quality bike.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:03 PM   #4
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Yeah, I was looking on google and found that the continentals had that fillet-brazing in this time period and seemed like a nice bike. The one that I have an interest in is this bike I have linked. I want your opinion if this is a good bike. Anyone can look and give their opinion, I would greatly appreciate it.

http://chicago.craigslist.org/wcl/bik/331427863.html
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Old 05-16-07, 06:05 PM   #5
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Rip-off- even $50 would be a stretch for that. See my previous post for suggestions.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:06 PM   #6
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I dont know, I just have such an affinity for more vintage bikes, and there is a great american vintageness about them that makes them cool.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:09 PM   #7
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Rip-off- even $50 would be a stretch for that. See my previous post for suggestions.
That bike *might* be worth the asking price depending on the year, there are people who collect that stuff.

To the op, there are plenty of Schwinns worth having, but this ain't one of them unless you're some kind of collector. Your money could buy you something much nicer but if you want the classic vintage American thing, go for it. I personally would go for a Racer, Collegiate, Varsity or Suburban to fill that desire and buy something else for the desire to have a bike that doesn't weigh 40 pounds. The aforementioned Schwinns are cheaper, may as well leave the Continentals for the collectors.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:16 PM   #8
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I want to convert the bike that I get into a fixie, so I can eliminate alot of the weight, one that is solid and dependable to ride, with some real character. Plus I am from where these bikes were made originally, it seems fitting to get a schwinn. Were these bikes made well and just a bit heavy? I dont mind the weight, I just really want a solidly built vintage bike, whatever the brand.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:18 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandonehansen
I want to convert the bike that I get into a fixie, so I can eliminate alot of the weight, one that is solid and dependable to ride, with some real character. Plus I am from where these bikes were made originally, it seems fitting to get a schwinn. Were these bikes made well and just a bit heavy? I dont mind the weight, I just really want a solidly built vintage bike, whatever the brand.
If you want to convert a bike and you're in chicago, just go to the working bikes warehouse and buy a frame, or buy a complete bike that hasn't been fixed up yet and leave them the wheels. I forgot that those earlier contis are fillet brazed, leave that sucker for a collector and get something lugged. WB has a ton of chicago schwinns, you'll find something.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:36 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Landgolier
If you want to convert a bike and you're in chicago, just go to the working bikes warehouse and buy a frame, or buy a complete bike that hasn't been fixed up yet and leave them the wheels. I forgot that those earlier contis are fillet brazed, leave that sucker for a collector and get something lugged. WB has a ton of chicago schwinns, you'll find something.
What is a good example model that I might look for? I was just there the other day, and didnt see much as far as mens road bikes. There was a smaller one up on the raised racks, and it was 385 dollars. That suprised me. I didnt even pay attention to the maker because I am really looking for something for 100-150, and is in good rideable condition. I like the looks fo the older bikes, but mainly for aesthetic reasons, but if there is a better model to get than another, those suggestions would be great.
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Old 05-16-07, 06:52 PM   #11
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You were at the storefront, which is where the fixed up bikes are. This time of year they're pretty much going to sell whatever complete bikes under $150 they have by 20 minutes after they open. Up the street is the warehouse, which is where you want to go if you just want a frame. They're a little cagey about it, but if you wander in at like 3 on saturday and explain what you want and are cool about it, someone will at least point you in the right direction.

The other option is blackstone bike works in Hyde Park, they have a crapton of old frames and can help you learn to do the work yourself.

As for models, there's not a huge range of difference among the lugged schwinns with round head badges. There are 1,000,000 world sport's out there, mostly in light blue, they're the most basic and fine but heavy. A later continental or a traveler will be a little lighter and maybe have some nicer parts. The 80's raleighs are great too, capri, pursuit, marathon, and a few others are all names that they put on nice lugged roadies.
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Old 05-16-07, 07:16 PM   #12
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About Chicago-made Schwinns (including the everlasting, infinitely dense electroforged models)...

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/chicago-schwinns.html

For specific info about, well, just about everything Schwinn from this era, see the Schwinn Lightweight Databook (includes vendor and consumer data and scans of catalogs of the time)...

http://www.geocities.com/sldatabook/cover.html

Under penalty of Sheldon Brown coming on here and kicking your ass, do not defame these sources.
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Old 05-17-07, 05:41 AM   #13
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What's with all the Varsity-related threads on BFSSFG these days? I counted at least 3 fresh Varsity-threads? I thought SSFG people are discerning when it comes to bikes. My positive prejudice needs adjustment.
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Old 05-17-07, 02:14 PM   #14
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they are all by this kid.
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Old 05-17-07, 02:24 PM   #15
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they are all by this kid.
Not all:
Looking on eBay for 10 speeds to convert and found this gem
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Old 05-17-07, 02:36 PM   #16
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imsosorry
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Old 05-17-07, 03:56 PM   #17
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good resource for schwinns http://www.geocities.com/sldatabook/detail7579.html
i wouldn't recommend one unless its a [paramount or le tour for fixed gear but if its all you have then whatever.. just don't put any money into the frame
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