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Newbie needs help with his 44-year old pal..

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Newbie needs help with his 44-year old pal..

Old 04-22-16, 03:47 AM
  #1  
vollumscope
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Newbie needs help with his 44-year old pal..

Howdy everyone-

My name's Rob, newbie here. I've come looking for help with a bike mechanicals issue.

My girlfriend wants to go bike riding. She has her own bike and to her 'bike riding' is a leisurely pedal around the neighborhood.
I can do that.

Succumbing to her nag.. err prodding I brought my beloved Schwinn Varsity out of long dormancy.
My dad gave it to me brand spanking new in November 1972 as a reward for getting straight A's on my report card.
I was thirteen then.

Dusted off the bike seemed to be in nearly mint condition with just minor signs of use.
It sat tucked under the cellar staircase from 1979 when I left home for College until 2006 when my parents demanded I
remove it or else..

From 2006 to present it has sat in my attic- forlorn... but not forgotten.
So now I'm awaiting typical "resto" parts-- new tires, tubes, wheel belts, brake pads.

In the mean time every bearing surface needs degreasing, cleaning and re-lube.
Rims seem straight and concentric.


Now for the trouble:

The front axle is bent! (Although my memory has faded I can not remember traumatizing this bicycle to cause the front axle bend).
Bearing cones and axle races look A-OK with no galling or noteworthy wear.
I attempted to straighten the axle on a press but no-how can I get it straight enough-- the bend seems to leave one bearing cone slightly out of alignment so that
the front wheel binds ever so slightly as it revolves on the axle. I suspect a replacement axle is a good idea.

The rear axle is straight but cones are in dire condition: galled and one is dented with the leading edge torn off! This would surely mean
damaged wheels or at least abused tires. But no such signs-- tires are originals so are the rims and all's well other than aging rubber.

So here is my plea for help:

1) I see NOS Schwinn parts for sale on the 'Bay.
Is there an official Schwinn part # for the proper front axle to this bike?
Both axles have keyways cut into them. The front axle is threaded 5/16 X 26 tpi. No other markings.
I'd like to avoid collecting bike parts-- ie axles 'n' cones.

2) Is there an exploded view avail that shows proper assembly of the front & rear axles?
Looks like bearing cone-keyed flat washer-lock nut. What sequence traps the fork to the axle?

3) The present rear axle cones are not the same-- what are the proper rear axle cones for the 1972 Schwinn Varsity?
The rear axle is also threaded 26 tpi but larger dia than front. Is there a Schwinn part # for the rear bearing cones?

4) What is the assembly sequence for the rear axle and bearings?


OK that's it! I'll post pix of my ride once it's back on its wheels!

Thanks everyone!

Rob aka "Vollumscope"
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Old 04-22-16, 07:23 AM
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oneidabow1
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Welcome, Rob! You might want to give memorylane-classics.com a try. They have "stuff" for older bikes.
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Old 04-22-16, 07:49 AM
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The bike parts supply business is unlike the auto one as there isn't an industry wide standard for part numbers, lists of said info and then the actual supply availability. Add in the age of the bike and that Schwinn has gone under major ownership changes since your bike was new and it's no surprise that the info you look for isn't about.

So do what others do and find a shop which actually fixes bikes and has kept a stash of old bikes/parts to scavenge from. The hubs on your Varisty are likely the AL French made Normandy ones, although Schwinn did use other sources for hubs over the year too. At one time a shop could source the cones/axles from a few different suppliers who imported from Europe. But as pretty much all the low cost bike stuff is made in Asia and that there's no financial incentive for these Asian manufactures to produce for the service markets this availability of parts is pretty much nill.

Having said that the Wheels Manufacturing brand does make many cones and axles and does have a web site. Good luck. Andy
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Old 04-22-16, 08:45 AM
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Last year I picked up a Varsity at a junk store to use in writing a blog post. The axles and cone nuts were pristine. The whole bike cost me just $25. Maybe there's something similar on offer where you live that you can pick up and scavenge for the parts.
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Old 04-22-16, 10:28 AM
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Thank you everybody!
The first place I went to hunting for Schwinn Varsity parts-- was the 'Bay.
Sure enough a number of Schwinn NOS parts are there-- even some axles.
Sellers show what look like Schwinn part #s . So that's what got me wondering if there are factory
part references floating around. Someone posted what looks like a factory part # list but the axles
are not listed. I gather it's probably hubs were sourced as assemblies. And bicycle sellers
matched parts. It looks like the Varsity is mainly "commodity" components.

Reading about Schwinn's history and researching their products-- focusing on the Varsity it doesn't surprise me that the bike's components are commodity types.
Evidently Schwinn sourced parts from various suppliers rather than in-house manufacture. I see some Varsity hubs were made in France. The hubs on my Varsity are Japanese--
marked "Model 71" & "model 72" but no manufacturer name. I see other model years of the Varsity were produced with other manufactures' hubs.

I'll check with some local bike sellers (LBS?)...
From what I can determine Schwinn produced a boat load of Varsity model bikes.

The search continues.

Regards,

Rob
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Old 04-22-16, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by vollumscope View Post
Thank you everybody!
The first place I went to hunting for Schwinn Varsity parts-- was the 'Bay.
Sure enough a number of Schwinn NOS parts are there-- even some axles.
Sellers show what look like Schwinn part #s . So that's what got me wondering if there are factory
part references floating around. Someone posted what looks like a factory part # list but the axles
are not listed. I gather it's probably hubs were sourced as assemblies. And bicycle sellers
matched parts. It looks like the Varsity is mainly "commodity" components.

Reading about Schwinn's history and researching their products-- focusing on the Varsity it doesn't surprise me that the bike's components are commodity types.
Evidently Schwinn sourced parts from various suppliers rather than in-house manufacture. I see some Varsity hubs were made in France. The hubs on my Varsity are Japanese--
marked "Model 71" & "model 72" but no manufacturer name. I see other model years of the Varsity were produced with other manufactures' hubs.

I'll check with some local bike sellers (LBS?)...
From what I can determine Schwinn produced a boat load of Varsity model bikes.

The search continues.

Regards,

Rob
I suggest you post this in the C&V (Classic and Vintage) form here. Classic & Vintage There are a few "Walking Schwinn Encyclopedia" members there. The folks there are cracious and helpful. It's very likely that you will receive much accurate info there.

If you are just putting around the neighborhood, maybe consider converting it to a single speed.

I was 13 in '72 as well, and sitting upright agrees with my back.

**Shamelessly posts a pic of his own '77 Varsity**



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