Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Old 06-30-21, 08:09 PM
  #1  
BikingViking793 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 387

Bikes: 2015 Felt Z75 Disc, 2008 Fuji Cross Comp, 2010 Trek Navigator 1.0, 2010 Raleigh Talus 3.0, 1974 Raleigh Sports, 1974 Schwinn Le Tour, 1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 146 Post(s)
Liked 54 Times in 44 Posts
1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

I picked up a new bike last week. I love my 1974 Le Tour so much I wanted to see how I'd like a Super. If I've translated the serial number ok it's a 1981 Super Le Tour. The number on the rear drop is 1G03138. I'm also guessing it is made in Japan? Paint is a bit rough and has a lot of touch up paint, but seems to ride real nice and has very new 27 x 1 3/8" tires. I believe it's mostly or maybe all original. I like that it's the color pictured in the catalog for that year. I'm pretty sure the bars are angled rather weird, so I'm gonna try to make them look more like the catalog. It has everything I thought would make my Le Tour a bit better: alloy rims, downtube shifters, about 4lbs lighter at 26.6 lbs. I think the Altus LT derailleurs are also probably an upgrade. Haven't had a chance to ride it enough yet with lots of weird weather. Have a WTB Volt I'm going to put on it and SPD pedals. I may also switch the brake levers to some aero levers, but will wait a bit. I've found I like riding in the drops more on these older bikes. I don't really like the look of the foam grips, but they are kinda comfy so want to give those some time too. The catalog bike has different brake levers and states they have hoods. Would the brakes on this bike have ever had hoods?
__________________
check out the Frugal Average Bicyclist
Frugal Average Bicyclist The goal here is to help you keep cycling on a budget.

Last edited by BikingViking793; 06-30-21 at 08:12 PM.
BikingViking793 is offline  
Likes For BikingViking793:
Old 06-30-21, 08:41 PM
  #2  
daverup 
Senior Member
 
daverup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Michigan USA
Posts: 328

Bikes: 02 LeMond BA, 86 Centurion Ironman, 78 Schwinn Super LeTour 12.2, 83 Schwinn Le Tour, 76 Austro Daimler, 87 Puch Mistral, 89 Diamondback Axis XT, 94 Schwinn Crosscut, 2016 Rocky Mountain Blizzard, 1994 Rans Tailwind, Couple of early 80's Mixte's

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 85 Post(s)
Liked 179 Times in 113 Posts
The 1981 Catalog says that hoods were standard. Some Dia Compe modern hoods will work, not perfect, but ok.
daverup is offline  
Old 07-01-21, 06:33 AM
  #3  
Velo Mule
Senior Member
 
Velo Mule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 1,296

Bikes: Trek 800 x 2, Schwinn Heavy Duti, Schwinn Traveler, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe, Schwinn Continental and Cannondale M400

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 444 Post(s)
Liked 349 Times in 269 Posts
Nice find. Those foam grips were really popular back then. Probably more than half the bikes at the shop that I worked in had customers that paid extra to have them installed.

This bike was probably built by Giant in Taiwan based on the G in the serial number.

Is that a Kenda K35 tire on the front? They have the period correct style. It may not match the ride of the original Schwinn HP tires and other high pressure tires. I have used them though and while I think there are better tires out there they are ok.

Let us know how you like your new bike. LeTours are good bikes. I have a LeTour Lux that I like a whole lot.
Velo Mule is offline  
Old 07-01-21, 06:37 AM
  #4  
T-Mar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 21,660
Mentioned: 569 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4056 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1,602 Times in 1,149 Posts
Based on the serial format, the subject bicycle was manufactured on Japan by Matsushita/National Bicycle Co., who were a known Schwinn contractor and are best known for their Panasonic brand.
T-Mar is offline  
Likes For T-Mar:
Old 07-01-21, 06:41 AM
  #5  
3speedslow
Senior Member
 
3speedslow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Jacksonville, NC
Posts: 8,944

Bikes: A few

Mentioned: 114 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1821 Post(s)
Liked 693 Times in 450 Posts
Good looking machine. White- red combo is an attention getter. These machines can be upgraded to the extremes!
3speedslow is offline  
Old 07-01-21, 07:02 AM
  #6  
Velo Mule
Senior Member
 
Velo Mule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 1,296

Bikes: Trek 800 x 2, Schwinn Heavy Duti, Schwinn Traveler, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe, Schwinn Continental and Cannondale M400

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 444 Post(s)
Liked 349 Times in 269 Posts
Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
Based on the serial format, the subject bicycle was manufactured on Japan by Matsushita/National Bicycle Co., who were a known Schwinn contractor and are best known for their Panasonic brand.
Thanks for correcting me on the maker of the bike T-Mar . I knew Panasonic was making the LeTour at the time, but that G in the serial number tempted me away from what I know.
Velo Mule is offline  
Likes For Velo Mule:
Old 07-01-21, 07:16 AM
  #7  
BikingViking793 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 387

Bikes: 2015 Felt Z75 Disc, 2008 Fuji Cross Comp, 2010 Trek Navigator 1.0, 2010 Raleigh Talus 3.0, 1974 Raleigh Sports, 1974 Schwinn Le Tour, 1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 146 Post(s)
Liked 54 Times in 44 Posts
Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
Based on the serial format, the subject bicycle was manufactured on Japan by Matsushita/National Bicycle Co., who were a known Schwinn contractor and are best known for their Panasonic brand.
thanks for the confirmation. I know these were briefly made in the USA around this time, but I figured the serial number made it Japan.
__________________
check out the Frugal Average Bicyclist
Frugal Average Bicyclist The goal here is to help you keep cycling on a budget.
BikingViking793 is offline  
Old 07-01-21, 07:22 AM
  #8  
BikingViking793 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 387

Bikes: 2015 Felt Z75 Disc, 2008 Fuji Cross Comp, 2010 Trek Navigator 1.0, 2010 Raleigh Talus 3.0, 1974 Raleigh Sports, 1974 Schwinn Le Tour, 1981 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 146 Post(s)
Liked 54 Times in 44 Posts
Originally Posted by Velo Mule View Post
Nice find. Those foam grips were really popular back then. Probably more than half the bikes at the shop that I worked in had customers that paid extra to have them installed.

This bike was probably built by Giant in Taiwan based on the G in the serial number.

Is that a Kenda K35 tire on the front? They have the period correct style. It may not match the ride of the original Schwinn HP tires and other high pressure tires. I have used them though and while I think there are better tires out there they are ok.

Let us know how you like your new bike. LeTours are good bikes. I have a LeTour Lux that I like a whole lot.
could the grips be original? They are worn, but seem ok enough. No idea how long they last. Any consensus on them now? Kinda want to change them, but they are kinda vintage cool.
__________________
check out the Frugal Average Bicyclist
Frugal Average Bicyclist The goal here is to help you keep cycling on a budget.
BikingViking793 is offline  
Old 07-01-21, 07:40 AM
  #9  
Velo Mule
Senior Member
 
Velo Mule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 1,296

Bikes: Trek 800 x 2, Schwinn Heavy Duti, Schwinn Traveler, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe, Schwinn Continental and Cannondale M400

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 444 Post(s)
Liked 349 Times in 269 Posts
I just looked in the 1981 Schwinn catalog. Your are right. It looks like the foam grips are original. They are more comfortable on the hands, than cotton tape which is why they became popular in the first place. Grab On Grips are still available. This is the brand that was most popular back in the '80's.

Grab On Grips at Porkchop BMX

You could also try a more modern tape. Or traditional cotton.
Velo Mule is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.