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Schwinn Tires.

Old 08-01-19, 11:14 AM
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Schwinn Tires.

New to Bike Forum. I need some Schwinn Tire Expert. I have a 1959 Schwinn Breeze De/Luxe. Looking for tires. It a appears to have 26 x 1-3/8 Tires. Rim I think is S-5 or S6, cant make it out. Can anyone help w/finding a Tire that will work w/the Rims.
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Old 08-01-19, 11:20 AM
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Sounds like you need a 597mm ISO tire. Search "Kenda Schwinn 597 tire" and you'll find a few options.
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Old 08-01-19, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Johnwhiting View Post
I have a 1959 Schwinn Breeze De/Luxe...
The American made Breeze was introduced in 1965 and was available through '78 and then again in '83. I believe the name may have been used by what became of Schwinn on imported models after that.
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Old 08-01-19, 12:08 PM
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Schwinn Tires

Originally Posted by TenGrainBread View Post
Sounds like you need a 597mm ISO tire. Search "Kenda Schwinn 597 tire" and you'll find a few options.
Thank You So Much :-)
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Old 08-02-19, 06:47 PM
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GOOGLE: kenda k23


KENDA is the Only manufacturer that I know of for these SCHWINN Only 26 x 1 3/8 (37mm - 597mm) Tires.

You can find them in BLACKWALL, GUMWALL, and WHITEWALL versions.

There are MILLIONS of Schwinn bicycles that are still on the road that take these tires.
THERE IS NO SHORTAGE OF THEM! THERE IS NO WORRY OF KENDA DISCONTINUING THEM.
Expect to pay approximately $20 each with FREE SHIPPING..............or slightly less than that.
Search EBAY: kenda 26 x 1 3/8 (37-597) schwinn tire
You will find at least eight different major online bicycle shops/parts suppliers that have an EBAY store listing. These will be brand NEW!!!
Do not even consider buying a USED tire under any circumstances.....waste of money because you'd pay significant shipping costs and even if you bought the used tire for $0.02 it is a bad deal because shipping likely will exceed $10.............. JUST SAY NO TO EVER BUYING "USED" TIRES!!!

Make CERTAIN that the 26 x 1 3/8 tires that you ultimately select have (37-597) stamped on the sidewall, along with 26 x 1 3/8
THE REASON is that "COMMON" (non-Schwinn) 26 x 1 3/8 tires have 37-590 on them............590mm being rim size designation and 37mm being tread width..
SCHWINN S5 and S6 twenty-six inch wheels TAKE This SCHWINN Only 597mm tire for the SCHWINN's S5 and S6 597mm rim size.
The industry "common" 26 x 1 3/8 is 590mm and THIS SIZE TIRE WILL NOT FIT ON THE Schwinn S5 and S6 rim.
The SCHWINN S5 and S6 rims are the exact same size.
The only difference between them is cosmetic, as the S5 has a slight raised hump in the center in the middle where the spokes are...............the S6 has a smooth portion there. The last year model that the S5 was seen on a Schwinn Collegiate was the 1972 model. The 1973 model Collegiate has the S6.
The S5 goes back to the 1950's. Both are chromed steel wheels with the same spokes, etc......None are better than the other......purely cosmetic as the 1973 and later(S6) has a smooth appearance, and the 1950's-1972 (S5) has the slight raised hump..............You'll know the difference when you see them.

OKAY, make certain the TIRE is 597mm.
597 = Schwinn ONLY
590 = Everybody Else

The kenda k23 = 26 x 1 3/8 (37-597)

I mention all of this specifically because Kenda and other tire makers make the "Everybody Else" industry standard 26 x 1 3/8 590mm for Columbia Tourist V bikes, Raleigh Sprites equipped with 26 wheels, Murray, AMF, Huffy, Sears Ted Williams, Free Spirit....any other make with 26 x 1 3/8 has the 590mm.
SCHWINN must have 597mm

THE INNER TUBE does not matter, just anything labeled 26 x 1 3/8

You'll find that your Local Bike Shop probably does carry BONTRAGER 26 x 1 3/8 inner tubes with a SCHRADER valve. They should be inexpensive, no more than $9 or $10 maximum from your local bike shop, and add another $6 Labor charge to install each one, and of course sales tax on the cost of just the tubes.
THESE BONTRAGER TUBES ARE VERY THIN AND LIGHTWEIGHT.
I recommend other brand tubes if you want Thorn Resistant TUBES.
I like XLC Thorn Resistant 26 x 1 3/8 over the BONTRAGER tubes...............but tubes are tubes and they all work fine.....but if you ride where there may be thorns, you should consider thorn resistant tubes from any manufacturer.
Tire Liners do work if you use elcheapo BONTRAGER tubes but TIRE LINERS cost more than decent tubes and if not fitted properly can cause problems over time.
I don't recommend PRESTA valve tubes unless you really like them or have them on all of your other bikes.
I do have PRESTA valve tubes on one of my Collegiates (a 1972 with the S-5 wheels..). They have a little stainless steel, or is it billet aluminum, adapter that allows the PRESTA valve stem to function properly in a wheel valve hole designed for a SCHRADER valve stem. It is essentially nothing but a washer like thing that fits perfect and perfectly resizes the hole................I have been using it that way for about four years or more, as it was that way with PRESTA tubes when a pal of mine had the bike.
On my other COLLEGIATES with the "stock" SCHRADER inner tubes.........I am running with THORN RESISTANT XLC 26 x 1 3/8 inner tubes THAT I SOURCED from random bike parts (crosslake sales) out of crosslake mn on the bay...................I bought a large number of tubes from them in 2018 for my Collegiates and for my neighbor's Collegiates...................We installed new k23 KENDA tires, sourced from a couple of other web bike stores with a presence on the bay.........One of my neighbor's wanted Whitewall version, and we also got both GUMWALL and BLACKWALL versions for various COLLEGIATES.
It is my opinion based on years of using these tires and thousand plus miles, my experience is that the BLACKWALL version lasts significantly longer than the GUMWALL or WHITEWALL as you'll get sidewall deterioration sooner, but have no worries, it will take years and you will get more than your money's worth on these tires. *****THESE TIRES are Hard To GET PROPERLY Seated, IF YOU ARE NOT EXPERIENCED in INSTALLING BICYCLE TIRES, take them to your local bike shop and pay them to install them......because you want them to roll smoothly.
I will say this for the elcheapo BONTRAGER tubes, they are tubes that will do the job okay....................I have them in at least one of my Schwinns..............if you do choose to use these el-cheapo thin tubes or another brand that is el-cheapo thin like the BONTRAGERS are, make sure you avoid thorns and carry a spare tube or a fully charged cell phone to call your spouse or a buddy.........or you'll be walkin the bike home.
Good tubes are worth the cost. They don't cost much if you source them from webland. It ain't a racing bike where you need lightweight rubber that is nearly as thin as a child's balloon.
The UPC code of the XLC thorn resistant 26 x 1 3/8 tube is 4 032191777047
the SKU # 144407 The inner tube is Made in Taiwan

I would highly recommend that before you mount the NEW TIRES and NEW TUBES, Be Certain to Feel All Around The Inside Of The Schwinn Wheel WITH YOUR FINGER TIP...............if you feel any sharp/rough spots or tiny rust/corrosion areas that are not smooth.....GET SOME VERY VERY FINE SANDPAPER or Emery Cloth Sandpaper of something like 800 Grit and then sand these sharp/rough spots so they are now smooth to the FINGER TIP Test..........If there are any of these rough spots where the corrosion has removed the chrome layer......I simply dab NAIL POLISH on to the sanded bare rough spot...........IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT COLOR NAIL POLISH THAT YOU USE BECAUSE IT WON'T BE SEEN as it is on the underside of the rim.............you can use oil based paint....or just spray paint a small puddle on to an aluminum pie plate and then use a tiny "artist"or kids paint brush to then transfer the wet paint from the pie plate to the inner wheel's rough spots.............you can even put a thin layer of EPOXY as a final coating after the nailpolish/paint has dried.......Let the thin layer of EPOXY dry for at least 24 hours before proceeding..................Use the $1.89 Harbour Freight EPOXY in tubes...part A , part B.............squirt out equal small blobs on a paper plate or something and then mix them with a Golf Tee or something...tiny twig stick. etc..............Apply over the nail polished/painted area.....making certain to lay a thin smooth coating................you've gotta work relatively fast with the EPOXY because it is the 4 min fast type, but it still takes 24 hours to fully cure....... If you have plenty of rough areas to deal with...............just continue to squirt out equal parts of A and B and mix and repeat this for each area..........because your EPOXY will begin setting quickly........ IF YOU DO THAT and you check the spokes with a spoke wrench if you dare, and your ancient Schwinn S5 / S6 wheels will probably be good for another 40 years or more if they don't exhibit any rust or chrome loss on the exterior of the wheel.
***When I said....Spoke Wrench....if you dare............I mean because meaning well novices can really $%@& up the wheel shape by getting carried away without having a clue..................everybody does eventually see what is happing and how they $%@& -ed it up because they begin to notice how the shape has moved one way or the other too much, or warped and wavy................unless you want to spend hours getting it back...................don't do it or read up and/or see YOUTUBE because IF THE WHEEL LOOKS AND SPINS FAIRLY TRUE, you can really $%@& it up thinking you're tightening the spokes of the wheel UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING..............................It is easy to LEARN, but you don't want to learn the hard way....

I highly recommend that for all your maintenance on your vintage Schwinn or any ancient bicycle from the early eighties or earlier that you obtain an approximately $4 and free shipping copy of the (c) 1973 book , 8 1/2 x 11 Softbound , Approx 338 pages called "GLENN'S COMPLETE BICYCLE MANUAL" that probably sold over a half million copies during the Seventies. Those huge Used booksellers on the bay all have multiple copies in their inventory, most likely ex-library books.... You will likely never need to pay more than $7 or $8 with free shipping.......there are so many copies floating around. It is the best bicycle repair-maintenance manual ever written for all bicycles made between 1947 and 1980. YOUTUBE is also helpful. This forum and the c.a.b.e. are excellent. There is also GOOGLE too.

I know that is perhaps a tiny bit more than you wanted to know concerning the essential 597mm Schwinn 26 x 1 3/8 tires.
Stay thin, Ride a Schwinn!!
Keep them rolling on the roads.
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Old 08-02-19, 07:59 PM
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Oh my.
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Old 08-02-19, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by TenGrainBread View Post
Oh my.
Yep, all that electroforging tends to have an EFFECT on SOME PEOPLE.

-Kurt
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Old 08-02-19, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Yep, all that electroforging tends to have an EFFECT on SOME PEOPLE.

-Kurt
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Old 08-05-19, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Vintage Schwinn View Post
GOOGLE: kenda k23
KENDA is the Only manufacturer that I know of for these SCHWINN Only 26 x 1 3/8 (37mm - 597mm) Tires.
^^^ This is what I found as well. I discovered this the hard way, initially assuming that the 26" wheels on my 1972 Collegiate Sport were the same size as the 26" wheels on my 90's mountain bikes. I bought the tires for the Schwinn only to find them too small, so I bought a backup set of 590 wheels for the tires, only to then buy a '93 Barracuda frame to build up to use as my suburban/gravel bike. I now find I use this bike more than any other in my fleet. All because I bought the wrong tire. Weird, huh?
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Old 08-05-19, 12:38 PM
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B-b-but will Kenda be around after the Zombie Nuclear Apocalypse, to supply 37-597 tires for all the Varsi-nentals that will be the only bikes still around?
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Old 08-05-19, 01:07 PM
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Too sum up, ISO 597 was once the 2nd most obscure of the five different 26 inch tire sizes. Now it is the most obscure. Just buy the Kendas. There's no other choice.

The first shop I worked used to stock National (panaracer) tires for S-6 bikes that would roll in. Those were nice tires. Kenda is rather cheap and cheerful, but I'm glad at least one company is still making tires for these rims.

Nothing wrong with loving Schwinn. Not Schwinn size only though. It was originally a British lightweight tire standard, primarily in the 1950s.

Last edited by Salamandrine; 08-05-19 at 08:43 PM. Reason: sp error...
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Old 08-05-19, 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
Too sum up, ISO 597 was once the 2nd most obscure of the five different 26 inch tire sizes. Now it is the most obscure. Just by the Kendas. There's no other choice.
This. Blackwall or skinwall, take your pick, then find the best deal.

Anything else is old NOS (like those WW's on eBay right now) and not advisable to ride on.

Want anything else? Plan on an ISO 590 conversion.

-Kurt
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Old 08-06-19, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Want anything else? Plan on an ISO 590 conversion.
Any idea if that's been done? I guess as long as the dropouts are the same width it should be possible. I probably wouldn't bother with my old Collegiate. When I did a quick & dirty "restoration" to it a couple years ago, I couldn't believe this was once my sole bike that I rode until I was about 25. It was like driving a tank that handled badly.
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Old 08-06-19, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Yep, all that electroforging tends to have an EFFECT on SOME PEOPLE.

-Kurt
First that made me laugh. Then it made me think I need one of those electroforged bikes!

Last edited by bikemig; 08-06-19 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 08-06-19, 02:51 PM
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He comes on strong, but I think he means well.
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Old 08-06-19, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
First that made me laugh. Then it made me think I need one of those electroforged bikes!
Legend has it that Dr. Bronner went down the same path of no return.

(Sorry if the content reads P&R'ish; it's the execution of the copy that I'm lampooning).


He probably rode something electroforged. I'd bet on that.

Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
He comes on strong, but I think he means well.
Incoherence is frustrating. That is all.

-Kurt
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Old 08-10-19, 07:24 PM
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Maybe one of you can help me by telling me bead seat diameter for the Schwinn 20 x 1 3/8. I have a Schwinn Stardust that was my wife's bike when she was a little girl, the tires are rotten, and I'd like to get the bike rideable for our daughter. The tires are simply marked "20 x 1 3/8 to fit S-5 or S-6 Schwinn Tubular Rim". The front tire also bears the text "Schwinn Sting Ray Fastback", and the rear tire says "Schwinn Fastback Slik". I'd also be grateful if anyone could say whether Kenda or someone else still makes this tire. My Search-Fu is not good enough for me to find this info on the intarwebz.
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Old 08-11-19, 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Vintage Schwinn View Post
KENDA is the Only manufacturer that I know of for these SCHWINN Only 26 x 1 3/8 (37mm - 597mm) Tires.
Yep, Got It!
One succinct sentence to the Point is always a pertinent, valuable and welcome response to a BF C&V query.
A maundering unreadable screed that's most likely "copy 'n paste" from an endless epistle on other Schwinn hardware stuff: Not so Much.

-Bandera Ex-Schwinn Chicago Factory Trained & Certified Mechanic
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Old 08-11-19, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by DPDISXR4Ti View Post
Any idea if that's been done? I guess as long as the dropouts are the same width it should be possible. I probably wouldn't bother with my old Collegiate. When I did a quick & dirty "restoration" to it a couple years ago, I couldn't believe this was once my sole bike that I rode until I was about 25. It was like driving a tank that handled badly.
It's been done somewhere, I'm sure of that, even if it never made the internet. My memory also faintly remembers coming across a few ISO 597 Schwinns with wheel swaps. At least one probably was a swap off one of the many Free Spirit 3-speeds of the '80s with the Shimano 3.3.3 hub.

You've summed up the ride of most electroforged Schwinns as they came from the factory. I've got a 1949 D37X balloon tire Schwinn here - in operational condition - that is the worst riding piece of garbage I've ever been on that can legitimately claim to be "tuned up and ready to ride."

-Kurt
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Old 08-16-19, 11:31 AM
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So, no suggestions as to replacement tires for Schwinn 20 (twenty, two-zero) inch wheels? . . . NOT 26 (not twenty-six, not 26"). I hate to scrap this bike, but my daughter will only be riding it for a couple of years until she outgrows it. What about cheap replacement wheels that might be compatible? Yeah, I know, depends a lot on things you, reader, cannot see. Just looking for ideas. I hate to scrap this bike, but needs must etc.
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Old 08-16-19, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Limper View Post
So, no suggestions as to replacement tires for Schwinn 20 (twenty, two-zero) inch wheels? . . . NOT 26 (not twenty-six, not 26"). I hate to scrap this bike, but my daughter will only be riding it for a couple of years until she outgrows it. What about cheap replacement wheels that might be compatible? Yeah, I know, depends a lot on things you, reader, cannot see. Just looking for ideas. I hate to scrap this bike, but needs must etc.
If you don't need to stay original, yes, find a cheap donor bike. You just need to match the axle size.
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Old 08-16-19, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by curbtender View Post
If you don't need to stay original, yes, find a cheap donor bike. You just need to match the axle size.
That's IF you opt to swap wheels. To answer the original question, @Limper, your tires probably say 20 x 1 3/4". That's the old Schwinn juvenile 20", with an ISO 419 diameter. Here's a Sunlite brand on Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000AO9OVW/ . Kenda makes one as well - https://www.bmxguru.com/products/ken...l-black-47-419 .
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Old 08-16-19, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
To answer the original question, @Limper, your tires probably say 20 x 1 3/4". That's the old Schwinn juvenile 20", with an ISO 419 diameter. Here's a Sunlite brand on Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000AO9OVW/ . Kenda makes one as well - https://www.bmxguru.com/products/ken...l-black-47-419 .
Yep, buy those tires for the OEM wheels if you want high quality bearings, rims, spokes and an easy to overhaul dependable stopping Bendix coaster brake.
Schwinn Approved frames and components for the old Chicago production juvenile bikes were light years better than the disposable junk on the market for kid's bikes today.
Straight, extremely sturdy and easy to learn to ride on it was common for a Schwinn to be passed down through many kids in a family and sold to a neighbor when all had outgrown it.
You cannot buy as good a kid's bike today in that size/style and with a full overhaul & fresh rubber: Good to Go for several more kid's use.

-Bandera
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Old 08-16-19, 01:41 PM
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I thought it was an excellent post. You guys are just jealous.

Kudos to Kenda. Imagine losing all those bikes because no one made tires for them.

Shame on Schwinn for making allowing this to happen.
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Old 08-16-19, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Bad Lag View Post
Shame on Schwinn for making allowing this to happen.
The original and genuine "Schwinn" was in business from 1895-1992, they don't "allow" anything to happen anymore and haven't for quite some time.
Is this news?

-Bandera
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