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What year is my Prologue?

Old 02-10-11, 02:41 PM
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tonkaboys
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What year is my Prologue?

Hi all,
I have a Schwinn Prologue that I bought as a used frameset back around 1992ish.
I think it is a 1987 but I do not know for sure.
Now the fact that I bought it as a frameset means that the components that I built it up with obviously won't tell you squat.
Also, the frame does not have the original paint so the color scheme will mean the same to you....squat.

I'm hoping that someone can tell me a year based on the serial number.
That number would be 7F00300.

thank you in advance for any help.
Matt
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Old 02-10-11, 03:08 PM
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June, 1987. Although 1987 was the first year for Prologue production, it didn't appear in the catalog until 1988 with the following comment in the '88 catalog:

"Prologue - a 1987 World Champion in its very first year. An eloquent complement to the craftsmanship and precision of the Paramount line."

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Old 02-10-11, 03:16 PM
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Read the date code on the headbadge, it will tell you to the day.
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Old 02-10-11, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by wrk101 View Post
Read the date code on the headbadge, it will tell you to the day.
Bill, the Prologue was only sold as a frameset and Schwinn's usual practice was to date code the headbadge with the assembly date of the bike which was some period of time after the frame was manufactured. I'm just not sure how a headbadge date code would relate to just a frameset (not an assembled bike).
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Old 02-10-11, 03:31 PM
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The code on the headbadge is 0937.....what does this tell you?

thanks
Matt
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Old 02-10-11, 03:35 PM
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Scooper,
The bike was purchased new as an assembled bike.
I know this because I bought it from a freind who I have since lost touch with. He bought it new as a complete bike.
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Old 02-10-11, 03:45 PM
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93rd day of 1987 then.
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Old 02-10-11, 03:45 PM
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Interesting thing about this bike that the frame sustained some damage in a criterium accident and was sent back to the Schwinn factory by the original owner for repair. That is why the paint is not the same as when it was new.
I seem to remember this bike being the red/white fade scheme but I'm not sure.
It is now solid red with factory applied decals, not original but still very nice.
I will try to get some pics posted in the next couple days.

Matt
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Old 02-10-11, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Scooper View Post
Bill, the Prologue was only sold as a frameset and Schwinn's usual practice was to date code the headbadge with the assembly date of the bike which was some period of time after the frame was manufactured. I'm just not sure how a headbadge date code would relate to just a frameset (not an assembled bike).
I defer to your expertise. My 1987 Prologue has a 1987 date code on the headbadge, and the 1988 has a 1988 date code. Both were assembled into bikes later, my understanding is by the LBS. One of mine was "under built" with Shimano 105 stuff, and had Italian wheelset. My other one had Shimano 600 tricolor.

I'll have to post the serial numbers on them.
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Old 02-10-11, 04:10 PM
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I built mine up completely with Shimano 600 with the exception of the front der which is a Dura Ace peice due to not being able to locate a 600 der with the correct clamp size and I wanted to ride!
Does this mean I built it with period correct components?
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Old 02-10-11, 04:16 PM
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Hmmm. I'm confused. If the headbadge assembly date code is 0937 (93rd day of 1987, which would be early April) and the 7F in the serial number means June of '87, the bike was assembled a couple of months before the frame was made?

The Prologues were sold as framesets only by Schwinn. Schwinn dealers put on whatever component group the customer wanted, although I'm sure many dealers put components of their choosing on the framesets and sold them as complete bikes sitting on the showroom floor. Late eighties Paramounts were similarly supplied by Schwinn as framesets only and dealers built them up with components specified by customers or decided to put Campy or Shimano groups on them, displayed them on the showroom floor, and sold them as complete bikes to customers walking in off the street.
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Old 02-10-11, 04:25 PM
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Well, I was mistaken on mine. Both are 1987 models. One has a head badge of 0497, the other 0937. The 0937 (93rd day of 1987) has a serial number of 7F00032, the other bike is in the back of the truck, I will check it later.

So Scooper, similar to above, my head badge is early April, the serial number is June.
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Old 02-10-11, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by tonkaboys View Post
I built mine up completely with Shimano 600 with the exception of the front der which is a Dura Ace peice due to not being able to locate a 600 der with the correct clamp size and I wanted to ride!
Does this mean I built it with period correct components?
Depends on the version of Shimano 600 and Dura Ace. Check the date codes, the Prologue was a two year wonder: 1987 and 1988. Actually, it shows up in the 1988 and 1989 catalog, so make it a three year wonder.

So if you want to be "period correct", date codes need to be from that time frame. Myself, my 1987 Prologue currently has a mix of 2003 Ultegra stuff. And I may be swapping it out and putting on Dura Ace 9 speed just for the heck of it.

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Old 02-10-11, 04:31 PM
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Oh I see, that is how the bike was purchased as a complete bike when they were only sold as framesets.

So at this level would it be fair to say 600 components would be a "proper" build of this bike?

The serial number and headbadge numbers.........that is odd...
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Old 02-10-11, 04:35 PM
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wow you guys are quick!
Two replies I didn't see before i posted my last question which you already answered.....sorry for what appear to be stupid questions.
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Old 02-10-11, 04:38 PM
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Okay, now another stupid question.
Date codes on the components themselves......where are they and is there some code to crack on those numbers?

thanks
Matt
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Old 02-10-11, 04:41 PM
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The Prologue was also in the 1989 catalog, and Prologue framesets were in the 1989 Parts & Accessories catalog.



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Old 02-10-11, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by tonkaboys View Post
Okay, now another stupid question.
Date codes on the components themselves......where are they and is there some code to crack on those numbers?

thanks
Matt
Matt, try the Vintage Trek website for tips on decoding component dates.
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Old 02-10-11, 04:46 PM
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The date codes will typically be on the back side of the components. You can decode them here:

https://www.vintage-trek.com/component_dates.htm

As for the assembly date being before the build date. I think at some point the Asian manufacturer (Panasonic?) was putting the "model" year in the serial number. A June of 1986 frame built for the 1987 model year would be 7Fxxxxx.

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Old 02-10-11, 04:51 PM
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Thanks guys, you rock!
The amount of knowledge here freaks me out!

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Old 02-10-11, 08:03 PM
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Ok Stan, here are my two Prologue serial numbers and headbadge date codes:

1. 0937, 7F 00032

2. 0497, 7D 04799

As you can see, headbadge codes both predate serial number (on the headtube) by a couple of months
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Old 02-10-11, 08:17 PM
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Well, I just dunno, Bill.

Bob Hufford's comment about Panasonic putting the model year instead of the production year into the serial number would make sense, but if the Prologue as a model didn't make it into the '87 catalog it's hard for me to believe they were actually building the frames in 1986. OTOH, Bob is about the most knowledgeable person I know when it comes to details like this.

I give up.
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Old 02-11-11, 10:07 AM
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Please bear with me guys.....another stupid question.

I come from more of a mountain biking background and with the advent of sloping top tubes and in some cases virtually no top tube,(think Trek Y bike and similar designs) frame sizes got a little more difficult to measure.
Different manufacturers would come up with varying places to measure from to come up with "effective" seat tube sizes.

So for my Prologue, is the seat tube measured from center of bottom bracket to top of top tube or center of top tube or some other combination?

thanks
Matt
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Old 02-11-11, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by tonkaboys View Post
Please bear with me guys.....another stupid question.

I come from more of a mountain biking background and with the advent of sloping top tubes and in some cases virtually no top tube,(think Trek Y bike and similar designs) frame sizes got a little more difficult to measure.
Different manufacturers would come up with varying places to measure from to come up with "effective" seat tube sizes.

So for my Prologue, is the seat tube measured from center of bottom bracket to top of top tube or center of top tube or some other combination?

thanks
Matt
Matt, the frame size of your Prologue is the length of the seat tube from the center of the BB shell to the top of the seat tube (where the seatpost is inserted).

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Old 02-11-11, 12:41 PM
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Stan,
Thank you.

Matt
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