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Just Got a Vintage Schwinn Varsity, but Where do I Find Correct Tires/Tubes?

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Just Got a Vintage Schwinn Varsity, but Where do I Find Correct Tires/Tubes?

Old 08-22-10, 01:57 PM
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Just Got a Vintage Schwinn Varsity, but Where do I Find Correct Tires/Tubes?

I just recently bought a 70's Schwinn Varsity 10 speed to for exercise and to cut my car use down. It needs tires and tube, but I am having trouble finding what size I need. Anybody care to bestow knowledge to this new rider? Thanks.
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Old 08-22-10, 02:02 PM
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https://www.google.com/search?q=27+inch+bicycle+tires
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Old 08-22-10, 02:03 PM
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Hello welcome to the forums. what do you mean by "I am having trouble finding what size I need."

does that mean you are unsure what size tire/tube to buy. or you just can't find the size you in a local store? the size should be written on the sidewall of the tire just like a car tire.

I suspect a '70s Varsity would have a 27x 1 1/4" tire and tube. you shpould be able to find these at any bike shop or even walmart.
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Old 08-22-10, 03:31 PM
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I believe those are S-6 rims/wheels (it's been a bunch of years since my Continental, but it seems that's what wheels it had) and they were not clinchers, but had flat wall mounting surfaces. I used Specialized Commuter II's (2's) on mine and they ran at 90 lbs psi. 27 x 1.25.
 
Old 08-22-10, 09:11 PM
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27 x 1 1/4 tires are pretty widely available and pretty cheap. They take tubes that are the same as 700 x 32. Just don't try and fit 700 x 32 tires on it
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Old 08-22-10, 09:29 PM
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Yeah, that's what I have on my '73 Varsity.
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Old 08-22-10, 09:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Nu_ Schwinn
I just recently bought a 70's Schwinn Varsity 10 speed to for exercise and to cut my car use down. It needs tires and tube, but I am having trouble finding what size I need. Anybody care to bestow knowledge to this new rider? Thanks.
97 to 98% of the Schwinn Varsities came with 27 x 1 1/4" tires. I know since I must have built a thousand or more Varsities in my time working in a Schwinn shop. The exceptions would be the extra-small versions which came with 24 x 1 1/4" wheels and tires.

27" tires are available in many places, including department and discount stores.
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Old 08-23-10, 01:17 PM
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I'm really new to owning a bike, so I know my question may sound kinda dumb. But after initially Googling, I ran across some info that some Schwinn Varsity's had odd tire sizes. Serial Number is KJ591071. I'm researching what I can/want to do to it. I'll try to get some pics up soon. Any insight is greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-23-10, 01:22 PM
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That would be a 1973 Schwinn Varsity.

Just like everyone above me has said, The tires are a pretty standard size. Any bike shop should carry a 27 x 1 1/4" tire if not, I'm pretty sure Wal Mart does.
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Old 08-23-10, 02:08 PM
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As mentioned repeatedly the 27 x 1 1/4 should be easily found at most LBS. If they are the S-6 (ISO 37x597) rims it is a 26 x 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 (this is not the same size as 26 x 1.25) and might be harder to find locally. But I just got some last week at biketiresdirect for $13 each.
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Old 08-23-10, 02:46 PM
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So I see that in 1973 you wore bermuda shorts with your shirt tucked in, at least in South Austin.

What year did the short cut-off bluejeans and handlebar mustache's happen?
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Old 08-23-10, 03:11 PM
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Niagara Cycle Works has them for about $5 to $6 each. Load up on stuff you need to spread out the S&H. I bought plastic bar tape and plugs from them not that long ago for about $1.50. Might as well get new brake pads, cables, etc. Their prices make it easy. Check out their clearance section, too.
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Old 08-23-10, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by cycleheimer
Niagara Cycle Works has them for about $5 to $6 each. Load up on stuff you need to spread out the S&H. I bought plastic bar tape and plugs from them not that long ago for about $1.50. Might as well get new brake pads, cables, etc. Their prices make it easy. Check out their clearance section, too.
Excellent site. Checking it out now.
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Old 08-23-10, 05:16 PM
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The Varsity was almost always 27" x 1 1/8 or 27" x 1 1/4 -- The exception is the very first year or so -- 1960 (maybe 61) which were the 26" S-6.

This might be an interesting tire choice:
https://www.niagaracycle.com/product_...ucts_id=507148

I just picked up a few sets of this model in another size and it seemed pretty good for the price:
https://www.niagaracycle.com/product_...ucts_id=422663

This would be a good choice for brake pads. They will help a little bit with wet braking -- your bike has chrome steel rims which will have real issues in stopping when wet:
https://www.niagaracycle.com/product_...oducts_id=2508
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Old 08-23-10, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Nu_ Schwinn
Excellent site. Checking it out now.
don't order anything that you want in a hurry.

If you can afford to wait a little and save some $$ though they are a great hook up.
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Old 08-23-10, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox
don't order anything that you want in a hurry.

If you can afford to wait a little and save some $$ though they are a great hook up.
Yeah I'm in no real rush. I'm still trying to decide what I can/want to do to it, as I previously posted. I'm definitely going to need a more comfortable riding seat, probably change the bars at some point. The wheels will need refinishing, brakes need to be redone. I'm probably going to start another thread to get board members input and see what they've done. So far it seems I picked the best forums to help me with the new ride.
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Old 08-23-10, 07:02 PM
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Clinchers won't work on the S-6 wheels. They WILL wake you in the middle of the night. It sounds like a .22 pistol.
 
Old 08-24-10, 03:49 AM
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Thanks for the info all, I will be needing these soon myself for the bikes I just started working on
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