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Shwinn Traveler

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Old 10-24-05, 12:09 PM
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incanus
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Shwinn Traveler

I founded in my uncle's place an old Schwinn Traveler. I don't really know how old is it but i guess is from the late 70s-early 80s. I am wondering if:

1. Can i turn this bike into a single speed?
2. Can i run "current" rims and 700x28 or 700x32 tires in it?
3. Can i put a "current" road brake in it?

Thanks for answering!
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Old 10-24-05, 12:42 PM
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cuda2k
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incanus, check out the pics of my traveler here: http://thecuda.com/traveler.html to see if yours resembles mine (decals, equipment and such) Mine's an 80, and should help you narrow down the year of yours (also look at the head badge, should be a 4 digit number stamped there. Last digit is the year.

1) Yes, single speed should be easy to do with the horizontal drop outs. It's crossed my mind to do the same to mine.

2) You will likely have to spread the rear drop outs some to get modern 700c wheels to fit (130mm spacing) The frame is steel so it can be done. See sheldonbrown.com for details on coldsetting the frame.

3) If you mean calipers, then you will have to get 'long reach' calipers. If you go with 700c wheels then even the long reaches will likely not be enough to work. I just put a pair of Tektro rebranded as Nashbar long reach dual pivots on my traveler. They work with the pad all the way down with the 27" rims I have. 700c is 4mm lower than that and I'd be rubbing the tires.
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Old 10-24-05, 03:52 PM
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incanus
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I don't fully understand the "spread the rear dropouts" part. Can you explain please?

So i can't put modern calipers in the bike?
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Old 10-24-05, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by incanus
I don't fully understand the "spread the rear dropouts" part. Can you explain please?
The rear frame fork ends will have to be cold set to the new 130 mm spacing. The procedure is explaned here: http://sheldonbrown.com/frame-spacing.html
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Old 10-24-05, 05:26 PM
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The combination of 700c wheels and modern brakes creates an issue where the brake arms do not reach far enough for the pads to make contact with the rims. Modern bikes have less space between the brake bolt holes and the rims, thus the 'reach' of the brakes have been reduced. This aids in making brakes stiffer and such or so it's claimed. In addition going from 27" wheels to 700c reduces the radius of the wheel by some 4mm. Put the two together and you would be looking at a very expensive bill to make it work. You'd likely need both drop bolts (approx $45 each from what I've seen) and long reach calipers ($30 for Nashbars). So to make it 'work' you're looking at $120 for the cheapest 'modern' setup possible.

By no means to I suggest it. Rather, since you likely have schwinn approved center pull brakes - I'd suggest replacing all of the cables with quality replacements, and looking at some Koolstop pads. These centerpulls SHOULD have enough adjustment to use 700c wheels if you decide to go that route. See the link scooper provided above for details on the coldsetting the frame. I know on MY 80 Traveler, I placed at 700c front rim on the fork and was able to adjust the brake pads on the centerpull brakes enough to have made it work. Your milage may vary depending on your brakes/etc. Depending on what your final goal is for this bike and what you really want to improve vs the cost you are willing to put into it there are a lot of options.

Here's a quick rundown of what I've replaced and done to my 80 traveler as it sits now:

Replaced steel 27" rims with alloy 27" rims, went from 5speed to 6speed freewheel - gave me 12 speeds over 10 and improved rotational weight and braking.

Replaced brake levers with Tektro R200A levers (also seen as Cane Creek brand) - much more comfortable on the hands, aero cable routing, improve braking (at least in my case - my front brake lever was broken)

Replaced stem shifter with clamp on downtube (friction shifting) - didn't like the feeling of shifting at the stem, plus make the bike at least 'look' nicer.

All new cables (brake and derailleur) - this was one of the first things. I suggest buying half way decent cables. They don't have to be Dura-Ace or crazy high end stuff, but it's worth it to me to spend $2-3 a cable over .78 for stainless steel 1.6mm brake cables.

I ended up replacing the derailleurs too, though I'm likely going to be moving the 105 parts to my new frame once it's finished painting. I have a Suntour AR II set that will likely go on the Schwinn untill it brakes or something better falls into my lap.

Most recently I put on modern dual pivot brakes - only reason this worked is that I stuck with 27" wheels. Braking improved again, though I think if I had put on new good brake pads on the center pulls with the correct positioning, the difference wouldn't have been near as noticable.

I probably went a bit over board working on this bike, addng and replacing parts. But I got the bike for $5 and I had a blast working on it, tinkering on it, and learning to ride and work with road bikes. Hope I have been at least a bit helpful and haven't confused you any further. Good luck and feel free to ask any questions.
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Old 10-24-05, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by cuda2k
The combination of 700c wheels and modern brakes creates an issue where the brake arms do not reach far enough for the pads to make contact with the rims. Modern bikes have less space between the brake bolt holes and the rims, thus the 'reach' of the brakes have been reduced. This aids in making brakes stiffer and such or so it's claimed. In addition going from 27" wheels to 700c reduces the radius of the wheel by some 4mm. Put the two together and you would be looking at a very expensive bill to make it work. You'd likely need both drop bolts (approx $45 each from what I've seen) and long reach calipers ($30 for Nashbars). So to make it 'work' you're looking at $120 for the cheapest 'modern' setup possible.

By no means to I suggest it. Rather, since you likely have schwinn approved center pull brakes - I'd suggest replacing all of the cables with quality replacements, and looking at some Koolstop pads. These centerpulls SHOULD have enough adjustment to use 700c wheels if you decide to go that route. See the link scooper provided above for details on the coldsetting the frame. I know on MY 80 Traveler, I placed at 700c front rim on the fork and was able to adjust the brake pads on the centerpull brakes enough to have made it work. Your milage may vary depending on your brakes/etc. Depending on what your final goal is for this bike and what you really want to improve vs the cost you are willing to put into it there are a lot of options.
Either of these is a good option. cuda2k has walked the walk.

For more details on drop bolts for installing brakes on frames made for 27" (630 mm) rims, but retrofitted with 700c (622 mm) rims, see http://sheldonbrown.com/home-drop.html.
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Last edited by Scooper; 10-24-05 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 10-24-05, 05:41 PM
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Glad I'm finally learning enough about these old bikes to give some solid advise now and then instead of just asking for it. Guess it comes with the territory of having enough random spare parts around that you just naturally see what works and what doesn't - and why.
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Old 10-24-05, 05:49 PM
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Many bikes from that era are fun to ride "as is". Just get fresh grease on the bearings, adjust the shifting and the brakes and enjoy the bike. Trying to convert a 1985 bike into a 2005 bike can cost as much as buying a 2005 bike new.
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