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For the love of English 3 speeds...

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For the love of English 3 speeds...

Old 07-06-24, 02:03 PM
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oldiron : I wish I had had your foresight. My parts stash, as meagre as it is random, is sorely lacking in things that I thought would never be scarce.
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Old 07-06-24, 04:28 PM
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Over the years I've done dozens of cleanouts, mostly of closed bike shops, a few that sat for decades untouched, plus some huge hoarder situations.
I came to the realization a few years ago that vintage parts don't sell for enough to cover the cost of hauling them home and storing them.
After having several huge containers full of parts with most that wouldn't sell for enough to bother with even digging them out I scrapped tons of frames, wheels, and other parts
I had listed mint wheelsets online for $100 plus shipping but got zero takers, shipping generally was around $40 or less via FedEx. I had a 20ft cotainer full of 26 and 27" wheels.
Many new old stock. When I listed new wheels I got told they were too new, when I listed used wheels I got told they were too old and had no value. I had them listed locally for $50'set but got zero replies on CL besides a few scammers who wanted to send checks from Nigeria.
I finally got tired of looking at it all and cleaned house, I turned the containers into cash and the scrapped the contents of five of them for cash in hand. I got $2,500 for each container in short order. I kept one for my own stash and that's getting thinned out soon. I had over 300 frames, everyone wanted only 23" frames, but none wanted to pay for the shipping so they never sold. The smaller frames just sat and never got a bid. I sold all the forks separate and scrapped all but a few older frames.
I got told that I should have given them away to someone who would 'appreciate them' but I wasn't giving them away for free after having stored them for years. I had a few guys come by who picked out a few frames then offered me $10 for about 10 frame/fork sets and $2 per wheel. They were made when I refused. They picked out the best of the best and wanted to steal it. One guy who came by got made because I refused to sell him my personal bike, a minty clean 1962 Robin Hood in 23" frame size.

Over the years I had all sorts of tires, many were amazing survivors but many too were just scrap when we found them rotten from age. Those that were still boxed or bagged lasted the best. Only the Schwinn tires sold, not much else ever sold I ended up bagging and trashing most of them and the smaller sizes just sat here for decades. (I just found another box of 24" tires, all new from the 80's or so but after two months on CL they got zero emails. They're dumpster bound soon.
Now if I don't have a personal use for it, it don't get saved. I limit my parts lot to about two shelves in the garage.
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Old 07-06-24, 06:08 PM
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I've cleaned out a couple shops' Sturmey Archer part stocks. I've basically accepted that they don't sell for anything substantial. It's nice to have spares for repairs though, even if I don't use them all. Comes with the territory of old three speeds, I guess.
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Old 07-06-24, 10:53 PM
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Its not just three speeds, no bikes sell anymore and parts that used to sell regularly now get no replies.
CL and FB have become more trouble than their worth and no one wants to pay to ship a bike or wheels on eBay.
If its not dirt cheap, they either don't have the cash or want it for next to nothing.
Then about 8 out of 10 people who do respond to the local sales formats never show or show up with no cash.

I had a guy look at an early Peugeot PX 10 that was a 23" frame and super clean and all original except the tires. It could have passed for new. The guy emailed me a dozen times, I sent him 50 high quality pics, he drives here to look at it, says its perfect but he has to sell his other bike first and leaves. He drove four hours to get here from CT. He emails me four weeks later saying he's having trouble selling his old bike and would I consider taking it in trade. He sends me pics of an 80's 26" Columbia 10 speed with a link to his ad online He was trying to sell it for $500. I told him I don't take trade ins and was just looking to free up some space by selling bikes I didn't ride anymore or those that were too small for me.
I didn't hear back from him after that. Then a year later, he again emails me about the Peugeot through the ad on CL, he again drives here to see the bike, same guy, same email. He again tells me he really wants the bike and says he looked at one just like it a year ago as if he didn't remember looking at this very same bike. He tells me he wants the bike and he pulls out a $100 bill. The bike was listed at $750. I told him the price is firm. He tells me he'll be right back, he needs to find a cash machine.
He comes back with $300 total. I again told him the bike is $750. He then goes on a rant about how its not worth that much and he can buy one elsewhere for less. I told him to go buy it and he finally left. A month later he shows up again this time with $500 and his old bike. I said I only take cash. He left, and I noticed he had MA plates on is car.
The bike sold the following weekend to a guy who drove out from Ohio who looked the bike over for a bit, and handed me cash and left.
Four months later the first guy emailed me wanting to know why I took the ad down. I told him it was sold and he calls me a liar and left me a full page rant about how I wasted his time.
Two weeks later he replies to another ad I had up. I ignored his email.

I had listed a 69cm frame Panasonic road bike from the 80's, the bike was huge. I made it clear in the ad that the bike was only good for someone over 6ft 5" tall or more.
The first guy to show up was no more than 5ft tall, and probably over 400 lbs, he shows up, looks it over and hands me the cash. He wheels it out to his car, takes out a milk crate and hops up on the bike and takes a ride up and down the street, then comes back and lays the bike down on its side on top of his car, ties it down by each wheel with a rope through the back windows and left. He left the milk crate on my front lawn. I left it there for a while, then put it behind the porch. He showed up looking for it 6 months later in the middle of a snow storm.
Normal buyers don't seem to exist here lately.
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Old 07-07-24, 12:08 PM
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I sort of agree with the "no bikes sell' part.
I've run into some strange people via CL and FB here but it seems most that do email about an item never reply a second time and those who say they want to come pick it up, never show or show up with no cash.

I listed an older Nishiki mountain bike back in April '23 on CL and FB, the bike was pretty much new old stock. I had got it from an estate sale along with a three speed Huffy for $5. There were 300 people at that auction, the highest price i saw all day was $60 for an 3x8ft dining room table and chairs that was likely 150 years old and a box of silverware for $35.
The two bikes were stored hanging up in a mud room adjacent to the kitchen and looked like they hadn't seen much if any use. I didn't go there for the bikes but for $5, I sort of had too.
I listed the MTB for $100, and the Huffy for $40 on CL and FB, I got zero replies after two months. I let the ads die. I relisted them mainly to keep something up on the two accounts and priced both for $300 each as place holders. I got over 100 messages, about half were belligerent or insane messages about how I was crazy or worse, but I also got a few offers but only on the Huffy. One woman emailed me saying that she was 400 miles away in upstate NY but couldn't get here till the end of summer, but that time it was the end of August or so. She wrote a page long email about how she owned one as a teen and wished her dad never gave it away. She tells me she'll give me $500 if I hold it for her till Labor day and she'll drive down to get it. I half wrote it off as a nut case email but the bike wasn't selling anyway and the ad was about to expire for the fourth time on CL anyhow. I told her I'll pull the ad and hold it for her till a day after Labor day. She called 6am on Labor day, telling me she's about 5 hours away and stuck in traffic, she called me every 20 minutes all day.
she had given me the name of the town where she lived and it was roughly a six or seven hour ride in light traffic so I figured she was in for a 9+ hour ride on a holiday.
By 8pm I had pretty much given up figuring it was another CL flake then i get a call around 9pm saying she's getting off the main highway and needed to know which way to turn because her GPS had been wrong all day. She described the area right and I directed her to my house. She gets there just before 9pm driving the rustiest 90's Chevy one ton dually truck I ever saw. I had the bike on the porch under the light, and she came right up to the house. She looks at the bike and all bug hugs it, she hands me cash and tells me how she got lost twice because the GPS took her via the NY Turnpike and then through PA. She takes the bike for a ride and was gone for 20 minutes, she comes back grinning from ear to ear, puts the bike in the back of the truck atop some blankets, runs over and thanks me again and leaves.
The bike was up for nearly the whole year with not a single serious offer then when I put a crazy price on it, it sells to someone who drove 8+ hours to pay $500 for it. It was clean, but it was also a 70's era Huffy. (Brown mans model with a tan seat, tan grips and orange and yellow decals and huge reflectors complete with a '333' Shimano hub).

The Nishiki hadn't gotten any serious replies and I had listed more items by then so I dropped the price from $300 to $299. The bike was an entry level small frame, only 19" or so but the bike was in new condition. I figured the alloy wheelset and Suntour freewheel were likely the best parts of it. Someone had put higher grade skinwall street type tires on it which to me was a big improvement.
About an hour after lowering the price by a penny I got 17 messages off FB and five off CL. I answered the first 10 of them. The one guy emails me and says he's in CA but wants the bike and is willing to pay for shipping, he'll even ship me a box for the bike and have it picked up. I insisted on a postal Money order and he was fine with that, just so he had the bike by Christmas. I get two postal MO's six days later along with a huge blow molded plastic box with airline stickers all over it. The thing had two padlocks inside, and several cutouts to fit multiple size/style bikes. The instructions were to remove the wheel, bars, and saddle, place them in the molded spots for those items, lay the bike in place securing everything with rubber straps attached to the box. Then close the box and call DHL for a pickup. I had already cashed the money orders for the bike that were inside the box when it arrived so i was paid in cash. I secured the bike, called DHL and a driver picked it up four hours later and seemed completely used to dealing with such a box. The box was huge with three flat sides so it could stand up or lay on either side safely. He slid it into the truck, came back and handed me a receipt, which registered instantly in my email.
THREE days later I get an email from the buyer thanking me showing him with the bike in front of a giant fake donut where he works.
Included was a long story about how he had sold an identical bike back in college to pay the rent and buying it back was his way of completing 'the circle'.
He said he had watched the ad all year and when I lowered the price to the very price he had sold his for, he took it as a sign and had to buy it.

I've been watching an early 60's Royal on FB that's been listed now for months for $40 but its an hour from me. The bike looks greasy but complete and not rusty.
I believe Royal was a Raleigh built bike sold by Rollfast.
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Old 07-07-24, 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by vintagebicycle
Its not just three speeds, no bikes sell anymore and parts that used to sell regularly now get no replies.
CL and FB have become more trouble than their worth and no one wants to pay to ship a bike or wheels on eBay.
If its not dirt cheap, they either don't have the cash or want it for next to nothing.
Then about 8 out of 10 people who do respond to the local sales formats never show or show up with no cash.

I had a guy look at an early Peugeot PX 10 that was a 23" frame and super clean and all original except the tires. It could have passed for new. The guy emailed me a dozen times, I sent him 50 high quality pics, he drives here to look at it, says its perfect but he has to sell his other bike first and leaves. He drove four hours to get here from CT. He emails me four weeks later saying he's having trouble selling his old bike and would I consider taking it in trade. He sends me pics of an 80's 26" Columbia 10 speed with a link to his ad online He was trying to sell it for $500. I told him I don't take trade ins and was just looking to free up some space by selling bikes I didn't ride anymore or those that were too small for me.
I didn't hear back from him after that. Then a year later, he again emails me about the Peugeot through the ad on CL, he again drives here to see the bike, same guy, same email. He again tells me he really wants the bike and says he looked at one just like it a year ago as if he didn't remember looking at this very same bike. He tells me he wants the bike and he pulls out a $100 bill. The bike was listed at $750. I told him the price is firm. He tells me he'll be right back, he needs to find a cash machine.
He comes back with $300 total. I again told him the bike is $750. He then goes on a rant about how its not worth that much and he can buy one elsewhere for less. I told him to go buy it and he finally left. A month later he shows up again this time with $500 and his old bike. I said I only take cash. He left, and I noticed he had MA plates on is car.
The bike sold the following weekend to a guy who drove out from Ohio who looked the bike over for a bit, and handed me cash and left.
Four months later the first guy emailed me wanting to know why I took the ad down. I told him it was sold and he calls me a liar and left me a full page rant about how I wasted his time.
Two weeks later he replies to another ad I had up. I ignored his email.

I had listed a 69cm frame Panasonic road bike from the 80's, the bike was huge. I made it clear in the ad that the bike was only good for someone over 6ft 5" tall or more.
The first guy to show up was no more than 5ft tall, and probably over 400 lbs, he shows up, looks it over and hands me the cash. He wheels it out to his car, takes out a milk crate and hops up on the bike and takes a ride up and down the street, then comes back and lays the bike down on its side on top of his car, ties it down by each wheel with a rope through the back windows and left. He left the milk crate on my front lawn. I left it there for a while, then put it behind the porch. He showed up looking for it 6 months later in the middle of a snow storm.
Normal buyers don't seem to exist here lately.
Mine never quite reached that level of crazy. Usually it was a CL person who wouldn't show up. I did have one guy offer me a marionette puppet of a pig he had made as a trade (it was hideous, but a simple "no thank you" sufficed to be polite). Another guy had a bunch of these male nude statues he wanted to off load, again as a trade for a bike (again, "no thank you" to be polite and move on). At least they weren't nutty and obsessive like your Peugeot guy.
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Old 07-07-24, 10:11 PM
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CL does seem to bring out the crazier buyers vs FB but FB replies have been too few and far between to make a fair comparison. Most of my sales come from CL but lately its been dead.
There have been dozens far worse then guy who wanted the Peugeot but I didn't want to get any farther off topic here.

CL here has far more bikes listed but they're the same bikes that have been there for months or even years. Rarely do I see a deal but even the smokin deals don't get taken these days. 4
I was watching a minty clean dark blue Raleigh Sports in a 21" frame size that looked almost new. It was over an hour from me but just outside of Philly, but it got no takers. The ad was up and expired twice before I suppose the seller just gave up. I've not seen it since.
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Old 07-08-24, 07:51 AM
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I recently purchased this neat little booklet from the 1950s on caring for your three speed bike. It came with your purchase of a Schwinn three speed "lightweight" (or two speed kickback version) in the 1950s.

Full version is on my website if you want to review it - https://bikeshedva.blogspot.com/p/sc...-for-your.html






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Old 07-08-24, 08:46 AM
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Those old manuals were printed in a time when they assumed that the average buyer knew how to use tools.
Now the average used bike buyer is buying used because his credit card is maxed out and he wants a bike. When it needs adjustment, he just buys another bike.
I have neighbors who throw away mowers that need a blade or spark plug, but their CC is full so they go hunting for one that runs for $20 and now see its cheaper to keep buying $20 junk mowers every few weeks and throwing them away when they won't start because its cheaper than $450/mo for a lawn service or paying down their CC debt.
I just trash picked a Peugeot 10 speed in pretty nice shape. Its a mixte frame model. The bike was in high gear, and the cable was pulled out of the rear derailleur.
I changed the rear cable and pumped up the tires and it rides fine. It was on the trash pile. The owner said she couldn't find anyone to work on it so she bought one that worked at the fleamarket. I told her it'll find a good home then asked her if she ever had any other old bikes she wanted to get rid of to just call me, and I handed her my number on a card. She tells me she's got her husband's old college bike and I can have that if I can get it down from the garage attic. She said her husband has been gone for years now and it just sits up there in the way.
I gladly removed it.
This is what I dragged home this morning:



The rear hub says 8 - 71 Made in England Hercules sold by AMF I'm betting its not seen the light of day in 50 years.
Unfortunately since its not my ideal size, it may end up being parted out mainly for its chrome bits for another bike, (basically a frame swap).
It likely won't bring more than $100 if I tried to sell it and the rims are worth more than that to make my other bike a better ride. I could just swap the wheels but the hub would be almost 10 years newer so I'll likely either find another 1964 hub to use or just swap the rims.

In the past month I went from two bikes to ten, if this keeps up I'm going to have a house full of bikes. This one is currently sitting in my living room with the Peugeot hanging on a hook in the basement with 6 others. This one was too clean to relegate it to the hot humid garage to get rusty.

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Old 07-08-24, 11:43 AM
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Iíve found I feel better if I take a short ride every morning before the heat of the day.(I am retired). I thought I could try posting a few pics Alís sirmike.

This AM my wife asked me to pick up a couple items at the Amish grocer so I took my utility hauler 53 Sports. It was a beautiful ride about 9 miles round trip.

A healthy crop of tobacco.

The Amish store.

My haul.

In front of the carriage shop.
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Old 07-08-24, 12:29 PM
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Really neat pictures. The rural areas south of Harrisburg and north of Baltimore are some of the best on the East Coast. I always admired it when traveling between the mid-Atlantic and New England.
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Old 07-08-24, 02:49 PM
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That is not far from my place in Lititz.
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Old 07-08-24, 09:24 PM
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It was certainly warm and humid here today - stuck to the shady, forest roads for my ride. 1959 Schwinn Traveler three speed.

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Old 07-09-24, 11:57 PM
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Its hot alright, its been sweltering here for a week or more. We were supposed to get thunderstorms but the dark clouds just passed right over and we only got more humidity instead.
Its been in the 90's with extreme humidity and there's no end in sight according to the weather. We don't have any nice shady roads to ride on here, its either ride up and down the side streets or take your chances on the state highway with no shoulder and 55 mph traffic. I've not seen a bike on the road here in a month now.

I've got a few older Schwinn Travelers and Racers that I've been thinking about cleaning up next. I wasn't sure if those were welcome here or not. They don't seem to be very well represented on the other forums and it seems the Schwinn Forum website is gone. It was slowly dying out over the years and I think it finally succumbed to a lack of interest.
I've got my Dunelt that I got last year too, but its on the small side for me. Two of the Travelers and one Racer are 23" frames.
I had an older Schwinn New World, but it was like a tank. Far heavier than the 55 Traveler and it was in bad need of restoration so I traded it to a guy for the Traveler that was in riding shape and another newer coaster brake racer that's built out of spare parts. The best part is that the Racer is a ready to ride bike that was just assembled and respoked, so it needed nothing to ride as found.
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Old 07-10-24, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by missingspoke
Its hot alright, its been sweltering here for a week or more. We were supposed to get thunderstorms but the dark clouds just passed right over and we only got more humidity instead.
Its been in the 90's with extreme humidity and there's no end in sight according to the weather. We don't have any nice shady roads to ride on here, its either ride up and down the side streets or take your chances on the state highway with no shoulder and 55 mph traffic. I've not seen a bike on the road here in a month now.

I've got a few older Schwinn Travelers and Racers that I've been thinking about cleaning up next. I wasn't sure if those were welcome here or not. They don't seem to be very well represented on the other forums and it seems the Schwinn Forum website is gone. It was slowly dying out over the years and I think it finally succumbed to a lack of interest.
I've got my Dunelt that I got last year too, but its on the small side for me. Two of the Travelers and one Racer are 23" frames.
I had an older Schwinn New World, but it was like a tank. Far heavier than the 55 Traveler and it was in bad need of restoration so I traded it to a guy for the Traveler that was in riding shape and another newer coaster brake racer that's built out of spare parts. The best part is that the Racer is a ready to ride bike that was just assembled and respoked, so it needed nothing to ride as found.
It's totally fair to include them in this thread. I'd love to see your collection. Tall frame Schwinn models from before 1965 are particularly nice to see because they are unusual. The Schwinn three speeds are somewhat overlooked because they fall into the cracks between collector interests. Three speed collectors tend to gravitate to English bikes, and Schwinn collectors gravitate to balloon, muscle, or middleweight bikes. BMX and early mountain bikes are also becoming more popular with Schwinn collectors. The Schwinn lightweights are neither fish nor fowl in that sense. The thing I like about them is the fusion of English and American elements. American styling became more pronounced as the bikes changed after WWII and during the 1950s.

The Schwinn "lightweight" three speeds are more closely related to English three speeds than to the famous Schwinn balloon tire bikes. The New World was the original, basic Schwinn three speed type bike. Schwinn designed the New World based on English designs of the time, even adopting a number of British standards for parts compatibility. Schwinn was not shy about using British parts at various times. Notably in the 1950s, there was a period where Schwinn relied on Phillips-made calipers and brake levers as standard.

Schwinn updated its lightweight line up in the early 1950s. The New World was replaced by the World/World Varsity as the basic bike. The Traveler was added as a mid to upper level bike with more luxurious features and extra accessories.

I did a basic field guide for the beginner here: https://bikeshedva.blogspot.com/p/a-...n-3-speed.html

There are much more detailed discussions elsewhere on the web, but these are still somewhat under-appreciated bikes.
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Old 07-10-24, 11:35 AM
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There's always been something about the Schwinn lightweights that made them ride so much different then their English counterparts.
The geometry is different but not by much, not enough to make such a huge difference in handling.

When i compare my Raleigh or other English bikes to my Two Schwinns the feel and handling is very different. Despite the Schwinn being significantly heavier it seems easier to ride for longer distances. I can hop on my Speedster, which is just a single speed coaster brake model, and ride it 10-15 miles with seemingly no effort but I tire on my English bikes after about 5 miles. I have three English bikes that are 100% sorted and have been gone through down to the last spoke over the past couple years, the easiest to ride of all of them is my 67 Sprite with a ladies frame. The bike was a mess when I got it but had two minty clean rims, so I bought it for its wheels then as I tore it apart I found a bent steer tube and bad front hub. The wheels got parted out to make my Men's Sports a cleaner ride, and then out of curiosity I played around with straighting the fork and and it came out perfect. Wanting to know how well it would ride I put it together with the rims off another parts bike I found and had gone through completely. The Sprite sits completely different for some reason, when I'm on that bike it feels as if the pedals are under me not ahead of me like on the men's model even with the saddle pushed as far rearward on the clamp and post. The Schwinn pedal position is similar but with a longer reach making it easier to maneuver at low speeds.

About 5 years ago i picked up an early 50's Schwinn three speed that looks a lot like the green Traveler above but the chain guard reads 'Tourist' not Traveler.
Its got the same fillet brazed style headset and bottom bracket and the plain Script decals but its much lighter then the frame on my newer Speedster, by quite a bit.
Its got an undated SA AW hub, S6 rims with butted spokes, it had a padded Schwinn Approved saddle and is sort of a silver blue color. The serial number is G00116 and it was sold to me as a 1952 'Tourist' mainly because that's what was on the cg. The frame looks like a traveler frame, so does the cg and forks but its lighter.
I see some models then had cottered cranks but this things has one piece cranks that read only Arnold Schwinn & Co in the middle with no numbers.

The brakes were alloy Schwinn approved, with a long read caliper in the rear and a short one in the front. Both Calipers are engraved in the older Schwinn script.
Its got the common round hole chain ring, it came with older style aero Torrington type pedals with the AS logo, and SS S6 rims. The Hub is dated 8/52. It was came to me 'loosely assembled' from a local bike shop that had it in its back storage building that had begun to collapse. No telling how long it sat there but its pretty well faded but not rusty.
Its a silver blue aqua sort of color. The CG is chrome plated beneath paint with only a strip on top being exposed chrome. The saddle is a near identical chassis to one that came on my newer Sprite 27 so I'm guessing that got swapped out over the years, both tires are chain tread US Royal black walls. It had a forged stem, the same likely as on most Schwinn bikes of that era and a pair of upswept bars similar those used even into the 70's on my Speedster but with more sweeping curves and less rise. The bars are marked AS & Co in script under one hand grip.
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Old 07-10-24, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by dirtman
There's always been something about the Schwinn lightweights that made them ride so much different then their English counterparts.
The geometry is different but not by much, not enough to make such a huge difference in handling.

When i compare my Raleigh or other English bikes to my Two Schwinns the feel and handling is very different. Despite the Schwinn being significantly heavier it seems easier to ride for longer distances. I can hop on my Speedster, which is just a single speed coaster brake model, and ride it 10-15 miles with seemingly no effort but I tire on my English bikes after about 5 miles. I have three English bikes that are 100% sorted and have been gone through down to the last spoke over the past couple years, the easiest to ride of all of them is my 67 Sprite with a ladies frame. The bike was a mess when I got it but had two minty clean rims, so I bought it for its wheels then as I tore it apart I found a bent steer tube and bad front hub. The wheels got parted out to make my Men's Sports a cleaner ride, and then out of curiosity I played around with straighting the fork and and it came out perfect. Wanting to know how well it would ride I put it together with the rims off another parts bike I found and had gone through completely. The Sprite sits completely different for some reason, when I'm on that bike it feels as if the pedals are under me not ahead of me like on the men's model even with the saddle pushed as far rearward on the clamp and post. The Schwinn pedal position is similar but with a longer reach making it easier to maneuver at low speeds.

About 5 years ago i picked up an early 50's Schwinn three speed that looks a lot like the green Traveler above but the chain guard reads 'Tourist' not Traveler.
Its got the same fillet brazed style headset and bottom bracket and the plain Script decals but its much lighter then the frame on my newer Speedster, by quite a bit.
Its got an undated SA AW hub, S6 rims with butted spokes, it had a padded Schwinn Approved saddle and is sort of a silver blue color. The serial number is G00116 and it was sold to me as a 1952 'Tourist' mainly because that's what was on the cg. The frame looks like a traveler frame, so does the cg and forks but its lighter.
I see some models then had cottered cranks but this things has one piece cranks that read only Arnold Schwinn & Co in the middle with no numbers.

The brakes were alloy Schwinn approved, with a long read caliper in the rear and a short one in the front. Both Calipers are engraved in the older Schwinn script.
Its got the common round hole chain ring, it came with older style aero Torrington type pedals with the AS logo, and SS S6 rims. The Hub is dated 8/52. It was came to me 'loosely assembled' from a local bike shop that had it in its back storage building that had begun to collapse. No telling how long it sat there but its pretty well faded but not rusty.
Its a silver blue aqua sort of color. The CG is chrome plated beneath paint with only a strip on top being exposed chrome. The saddle is a near identical chassis to one that came on my newer Sprite 27 so I'm guessing that got swapped out over the years, both tires are chain tread US Royal black walls. It had a forged stem, the same likely as on most Schwinn bikes of that era and a pair of upswept bars similar those used even into the 70's on my Speedster but with more sweeping curves and less rise. The bars are marked AS & Co in script under one hand grip.
The "Tourist" is a rare model to find now. It was an upscale, sportier bike than some of the other Schwinn 3 speeds of that time. Do you have a picture of it?

1953 catalog entry:

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Old 07-10-24, 02:36 PM
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I don't think I took any pics of it together, when I brought it home I took it apart and put it in pieces in the back of my car at the time.
Not knowing exactly what it was and sort of looking around for parts for it, I never put it back together.
The bike looks a lot like the 56 pictured a few pages back by 1pc@atime but a shade or two lighter in color. The serial number seems to say 1952? (G00116).
The cg appears to be fully chromed under the paint and the only markings on it are the faint outline of the word 'Tourist' slightly forward of the one in the pic above.
Its also got the more common round hole chainring in 1/2" pitch and not the star pattern with cottered cranks as depicted.
The frame has an American bottom bracket as on a Traveler.
I was sort of thinking it may have been an early Traveler that someone swapped CGs on but the frame is darn near half the weight of a same size Racer frame I've got here.
I'll have to do some digging to get to it, i sort of packed it away on a top shelf down in the basement hoping to find another one for parts or more information.
The fact that it also has the Cursive Schwinn script vs the wings decals seems wrong too.
I have an early Continental, and that's ligher yet but all I've got for that is the frame. The former owner stripped it and sold off its parts on fleabay before I got it at a flea market in PA for $10. That frame is sort of a brown/burgundy color.

I did find this pic of the one New World frame I had and sold, this was the one that weighed so much. It weighed more than two regular Racer or Traveler frames.
I went so far as to run coat hangers through the tubes looking to see if any were solid or filled with something but it was just super heavy tubing.
The fact that it was rough and needed nearly everything I sold it to a guy in out west who wanted a project. This came to me with no rims, just two hubs, the rear being a single speed freewheel and the front being a common Schwinn hourglass hub. The cranks were and oddity with 52t 1in pitch sprocket. that attached externally via a 5 bolt flange on the cranks. I still have the hubs and rusty handle bars and the front fender but all else is long gone. The serial number was G001468 on this frame, stamped on the bottom bracket.
Non of which matters now since its been sold for some time now but if it were a larger frame, I may have decided to keep it. despite the weight.




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Old 07-11-24, 08:02 AM
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That New World frame is from the transition period in the early 50s from the older generation of New Worlds to the 1950s style World/World Varsity/World Traveler. The bike graphics changed to the 1950s-type, but the older New World badges were still used. The serial looks like a 1950 serial number, from near the beginning of that transition (roughly 1950-52). Paint, parts, and accessories available changed, but the frames were still a combination of welded and brazed joints. The frame tubes have thick walls. The frames are fairly heavy, though are also quite durable.
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Old 07-11-24, 01:05 PM
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I had a Schwinn New World bike as a kid, the thing weighed a ton. Mine had a New Departure coaster brake and the bolt on sweet heart sprocket. I do seem to recall there being a few odd things about that bike, first was the cranks, second was the 1.375 tires it used. It was a well used bike when I got it back in the early 70's and I didn't do it any favors either. I used it for a bit to deliver papers on but it was just too much of a tank to pedal with all that weight. Mine was a dark burgundy color and had belonged to an old guy around the corner who I delivered newspapers to. He traded it to me for the balance owed for about four weeks of papers then, which was about $8 or so. The tires were an issue even then. At first I got some newer Schwinn S6 tires to fit with lots of lube and some careful shaving of the rubber along the bead but I eventually just swapped out the rims for a set of newer S6 rims from a girls Traveler I bought at a yardsale.
In the end the bike ended up just sitting in the shed outback since nearly everything else I had then rode and pedaled easier and wasn't so heavy. A few guys used to joke with me telling me the thing was made with bar stock not tubing, it was that heavy. I'm not sure what happened to it, I know I couldn't sell it back then, it was still there when I moved away after I got out of school and gone when I inherited the place years later. I actually had forgotten about it till I saw this post.
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Old 07-11-24, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by SirMike1983
The "Tourist" is a rare model to find now. It was an upscale, sportier bike than some of the other Schwinn 3 speeds of that time. Do you have a picture of it?

1953 catalog entry:
X
About 22 years ago I did a massive cleanout of a defunct bike shop in northern NJ. The guy was a massive hoarder and we removed over 2,500 complete bicycles and two large truck loads of parts. Among that lot of bikes were three early 50's Schwinn three speeds. One was a New World, similar to the one shown above, and I do remember it being shockingly heavy.
One was a Chrome bladed fender model with only the word Tourist on the completely painted chain guard The bike was an odd blue green color which I found near impossible to photograph accurately for some reason. I had to take it outside on a cloudy day and shoot the pics without a flash to get decent shots of it for eBay. It sold to a guy in Kansas who turned out to have a buddy in MD who came and got the bike.

The third bike was another Tourist labeled bike in light blue, similar in color to the traveler shown a few pages back here, it had a later serial number, on the dropout vs the BB shell, I seem to recall it being a '54 or '56. I remember those three well because they were never really identified. We listed them only as 'Vintage Schwinn Three Speed Bike Traveler/Tourist/Racer?" and let the buyer decide what they were.

With any old bike its hard to tell what's been swapped out, changed or flat out faked over the years. I found it odd that each one had Schwinn on two tubes and only Tourist on the CG, where as most bikes have Schwinn script on the CG too. The paint on each one was decent enough that I though it unlikely part of the decals had worn away.

A few years later I found one from that same period painted in a violet color, on a mens frame but with a kickback two speed. That had the Schwinn Script decals and only Schwinn on the CG. It had no model markings at all but I seem to remember it having a 1955 or 56 serial number. I remember that bike because it sold for over $500 on ebay back then and got shipped to Germany at considerable cost.

I did have one Continental Tourist, which had a Euro type BB and what looked like Williams cranks and a Sturmey Archer AW hub. The bike was a bronze/copper sort of color with a leather saddle, forged Schwinn stem and wide flat mustache style bars turned upright. It had full fenders with the narrow bladed tip. It sold fast to a local guy who still owns it but doesn't ride it. He spent a fortune restoring and repainting it and now its mounted on a wall in his game room above his garage along with about 20 other old bikes.

In my younger days I rode mostly all English bikes, both ten speed and three speed types. I had a '55 Norman in a 23" frame that I rode for a long time before a crash on some ice bent the frame beyond repair during my high school days. I replaced it with a pretty clean 60's Robin Hood which I still own. Before the Norma I had a '52 BSA, which also got wrecked in several crashes which I feel led to the lower head tube lug cracking the down tube due to a bend from a front end hit. To be fair, as a young kid, I did things to that bike most wouldn't do to a bmx bike. Including seeing how high it could fly off a ramp into the creek. I wish I still had it though but in reality it was pretty rough when I got it as a hand me down from an older kid in the neighborhood. I think the last time it went swimming was its last day, I can't even remember if we fished it back out or not because it was darn near broken in two by that time with a ton of rust and stuck in high gear making some of the nastiest grinding sounds I ever heard from a hub before. (Likely from being submerged a few dozen or so times).

When I got the Norman it felt like a huge upgrade and that one never took the dive of the ramp. I was actually pretty disappointed when it slid out from under me on the ice one day into a stone retaining wall down a steel driveway on its side taking the hit head on. It was bent so bad the tire overlapped the down tube. It took me all my strength to bend the front back enough to ride it home. I had used a scissor jack from my a car with a bar, some 2x4's and some lag bolts to force the front end back out enough to make it ridable but it was never right.

By the time I found the Robin Hood it was nothing but a parts bike sitting in the shed. Its last failure was a split rear rim. The rear rim had cracked between about 9 spoke holes finally opening up and letting the tube blow out and the spokes to let go. That wheel had been finessed a few times to correct a bent rim and the spokes that were over tightened were starting to pull through and eventually cracked. I still have a scar in my leg from where a spoke stabbed me when the rim collapsed back when I was about 16 or so. (It failed while jumping off the low end of a loading dock where we used to pick up our newspapers to deliver for the day, I had a full load on the bike in three baskets and I rode and sort of 'bunny hopped it' off the low end of the loading dock like I did so many times before but that time was its last.

I dragged it home, switched to my spare bike and it never moved again. I never used the Robin Hood for that but I was older by the time I found it, probably into my 20's by that time. My dad probably junked it somewhere along the line after I had moved out in the 80's.
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Old 07-12-24, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by markk900
oldiron : I wish I had had your foresight. My parts stash, as meagre as it is random, is sorely lacking in things that I thought would never be scarce.
Sometimes I wonder if it much of it was worth the trouble. The tires are what's nice to have but the rest of the parts which should have value seemingly don't these days. What I don't use in my lifetime will likely get scrapped when I'm gone.
At the very best having a huge stash of parts saved me lots of money over the years but what it really saves is time searching for something I need online. Of course, that's if I remember I have it or can remember where it is or in what drawer or box its in.
I've got more frames then wheels so many of them will never get put back together. I've also got a stack of old ladies frames that have been stripped to fix men's models.
A few of those sold on fleabay years ago but that ended when shipping got out of hand so now they're likely just scrap.

Very few of the bikes I find have Raleigh Westrick style rims, it seems no one bought or they didn't sell many upper level models here, only the economy models with Endrick rims and padded saddles. I worked at a bike shop back when i was in school building wheels and putting new bikes together. That shop sold Raleigh, Rollfast, Columbia, and Peugeot. The boss wouldn't let anyone but himself touch the Peugeot bikes but I did all the Raleigh bikes when I was there. In 6 year or so during the early to mid 70's i didn't see a single Brooks leather saddle come through on a bike, nor were there any Sports models with the Westrick rims. The LTD model was king, (second to the Grand Prix), and if they wanted a three speed, and didn't want to spend the money for a Raleigh, they bought the Rollfast Aeroflight models. I probably assembled a thousand of them back then and just as many Columbia Tourists. The local buyers rarely would pop for the added cost of a Raleigh and the rest wouldn't buy anything not made in the USA.
We sold a handful of higher end Raleigh road bikes back then and those came with the B17 saddles but it was almost a guarantee that the buyer wanted the saddle replaced with something with a ton of padding. It was super common to sell something like a Raleigh International and have the owner want a cruiser saddle or worse yet a basket on it.

I also had saved a ton of balloon tire bikes and parts but those are all but unsellable now as well. No one wants bare frames and no one wants non-tank models so its no use putting them together either.
Its bad when you start seeing what was collectible only a few years ago listed for $50 or less and it just sits there unsold on marketplace or CL for months.
Raleigh three speeds were hot here 20 years ago, in the years after they stopped making them people suddenly started to want one before they became extinct, now those people who remember them are either too old to ride, have all they want, or don't have the cash to spend these days.
The next generation only knows BMX bikes it seems.
The bikes I used to scrap that came from department stores are now what they're buying.
A year ago I had to buy a truck load of garbage bikes to get the one clean looking Raleigh Sprite 5spd in the lot. I gave $30 to a guy off FB for 27 bikes. Only two were shop grade, the Raleigh, and one Schwinn 10 speed Traveler. The rest were all Murray and Huffy bikes.
Wanting to just unload them, I took the one Murray that looked pretty clean, gave it a wash with a pressure washer, a quick coat of wax, replaced two missing spokes, patched the tubes, cleaned and lubed the bearings and listed it for $300 OBO, price the same as a Sprite 27 I had listed that looked like it came off the showroom floor that day.
The Sprite is still here, it eventually got converted to a three speed and a loner bike, but the Murray sold in three hours, the guy showed up and said he's been looking for a bike that color for a year. He hands me $300 and leaves. I did the same with the Huffy three speeds, two Sante Fe 10 speeds, and several single speeds, they all sold nearly instantly, but they won't touch the better bikes, even if their cheaper. A local former shop owner said its because its all they ever knew so they keep buying the same brand or buying for nostalgia reasons.
As i get older I've seriously thought about cleaning house and getting my basement and shed back but then I'd be bored. The problem is I've got too many hobbies. Bikes, Old garden tractors, trains, fishing tackle, outboards, boats, vintage receivers and speakers, stamps, coins, etc plus a house to take care of. I'm busier in retirement than when I was working.




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Old 07-12-24, 03:01 PM
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oldiron : too many hobbies in retirementÖ. I hear ya. Outboards, radios, motorcycles, electronics/computers/stereo, clocks, watches, books, and the occasional bicycle 😂
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Old 07-12-24, 07:53 PM
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Same here...when did I have time to work.
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Old 07-12-24, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by markk900
I
btw: I am a noted cheapskate (sorry frugal) and I didnít pay more than $80CAD for *any* of my 3 speedsÖ. Not gonna pay $80 for a fricken tire.
Once you break the frugal barrier, it's okay to spend a little on nice tires. Just bought some 700C Continental Terraspeeds for my Salsa Vaya, $84.95 each! Primeau did have a one day sale that brought the price down to $75. They ride sweet.
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