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Old Schwinn Mesa Runner issue.

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Old Schwinn Mesa Runner issue.

Old 12-26-09, 08:59 PM
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olliesdad01
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Old Schwinn Mesa Runner issue.

I recently purchased a 1985 or 86 Schwinn Mesa Runner. I was surprised that it was advertised as a 10 speed, thinking that by then 12 speeds were the "norm" for recreational bikes. The mystery deepened as I inspected the rear cluster. Six cogs. Both the largest and the smallest cogs matched the specs in the '85 catalog but the catalog also describes it as a 10 speed.

The wheel is perfectly centered and it shifts through all of the available cogs. So I am trying to determine if this represents a manufacturing run combining six cog clusters on five speed hubs for manufacturing efficiency, or an inaccurate catalog.

More importantly, are five speed hubs capable of handling a six speed cog? If so, is there a way to determine which cog the hub was designed to handle?

Except for this and a 40T inner chain ring instead of the advertised 38T, the bike seems to be totally "stock".

Thanks for your help in advance.
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Old 12-26-09, 09:06 PM
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Two possible explanations come to mind:

1. This was a running change made during the model year and since the catalog was printed at or before the start of the model year it wouldn't reflect the change.

2. This bike has a Sun Tour Ultra-6 freewheel which fit 6 cogs into the width of a standard 5-speed freewheel.

Measure your rear dropout spacing. If it's 120 mm, the bike is spaced for 5-speeds and the freewheel is probably an Ultra-6. If the spacing is 126 mm, the bike is legitimately a 6-speed and the change was made during the model run.
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Old 12-26-09, 09:12 PM
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Originally Posted by olliesdad01 View Post
So I am trying to determine if this represents a manufacturing run combining six cog clusters on five speed hubs for manufacturing efficiency, or an inaccurate catalog.

More importantly, are five speed hubs capable of handling a six speed cog? If so, is there a way to determine which cog the hub was designed to handle?
If it's a 120mm spindle and using extra dish to accommodate a non-Ultra6 freewheel, the question is - what do you weigh?
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Old 12-27-09, 12:51 AM
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I weigh in at 160. Interesting point about the dishing of the wheel, a factor I had not considered.

The spacing between the rear dropouts is 126.
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Old 12-27-09, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by olliesdad01 View Post
The spacing between the rear dropouts is 126.
OK, it seems the bike was purpose -built as a 6-speed so the catalog doesn't reflect the changes made during the model year.

And, yes, Kimmo's comment that maybe someone respaced a 120 mm OLD hub to take a 6-speed freewheel and "over dished" it to compensate as indeed interesting. Fortunately that doesn't seem to be the case. BTW, you could use a 7-speed freewheel also as they do fit a 6-speed (126 mm) hub.
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