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-   -   i need your help or advice can you help?? (https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vintage/898812-i-need-your-help-advice-can-you-help.html)

71schwinn 06-30-13 10:16 PM

i need your help or advice can you help??
 
hi i'm danny, well i'll start off by saying i'm new to this forum and to road biking. i just recently got into it but, was riding the wrong bike. i was using a mountain bike and although it does the job, i wanted to look the part. plus it was a woman's mountain bike. with that being said, i recently bought a 1971 10 gear schwinn varsity in relatively good condition all original, almost no rust at all. i got it off craigslist for 60$. it's a real heavy bike(almost 40lbs) but once you get going your going and it's not that bad once i shift down. but of course it needs some work. i'm thinking of taking the whole bike apart to paint it(flat black). also was thinking of buying new tubes and tires for it, as well as brake levers and calipers, new seat, new tape for handle bars, wires for brake and gears, and i think that's about it. was thing of just taking off the crank and cassette to give'm a good clean and give it a new lube up. does anyone know how much does an original crank weigh in a varsity? anyways, what i need your fellow member advice in is, if i should restore it and spend money and time on it or save the time and just go for a new 250-300$ bike? by the way that's my budget if i decide to restore it. also i wish to make the bike a bit lighter any suggestion's? i think this is it and any help or advice is welcomed, i appreciate you taking the time you take in reading this thank you kindly.

eschlwc 07-01-13 03:57 AM

sell it... and buy a '70s or '80s chromoly or better (531, columbus, valite, vitus) double butted steel road bike in your size for $200 or less complete with an on-frame derailleur hanger, cotterless crank, aluminum rims and downtube shifters, then spend additional funds and precious time restoring it to like-new condition with a new chain, rubber, cables, housing, pads, tape, and freewheel, and you'll have a bike you can ride across county line after county line with a big satisfied grin on your face knowing you didn't sink $200 in a 40 pound monstrosity.

[run on sentences are my specialty.]

KonAaron Snake 07-01-13 04:13 AM

Agree in principle with the above, except that I don't think you're likely to find 531/vitus at that pricing unless you get very lucky and are very patient.

I'd sell it and target mid-range Japanese for 250ish.

Gravity Aided 07-01-13 04:49 AM

Or look around for a nice late 80's upper end Schwinn, Prelude, Peloton, Premis, Passage, Voyageur, etc. with Columbus Tubing. Schwinn built a lot of bikes in this period, and they built them well, with Italian tubing, Japanese components, and American craftsmanship. At about 1/2 to 2/3 the weight of your Varsity. Later 80's French is nice as well, look for a Peugeot with Shimano componentry, so you avoid a lot of the pitfalls inherent in older French bikes, having to do with threading issues.

BruceHankins 07-01-13 04:57 AM

+1 ride and then get a newer bike.

My bike is no weight weenie but it serves me well and you can get a significant upgrade at your price level.

wrk101 07-01-13 05:57 AM

Just do very basic maintenance on it: bearings, grease, flush freewheel, lube chain, install a new Walmart cable set, and call it good.

Then save your $$ and pick up a nice 1980s Japanese bike. A good one will weigh almost half as much, and you really can't get there with a Varsity.

spacemanz 07-01-13 11:59 AM

Another thing, besides the learning experience of lubing up that Schwinn is, pedaling that old heavy steel for awhile will get you in shape, so you'll appreciate what you upgrade to even more. ;)

Wino Ryder 07-01-13 02:04 PM


Originally Posted by 71schwinn (Post 15800951)
what i need your fellow member advice in is, if i should restore it and spend money and time on it or save the time and just go for a new 250-300$ bike? by the way that's my budget if i decide to restore it. also i wish to make the bike a bit lighter any suggestion's?

Take some kind advice, dont tear it down and paint it if its in relatively good condition like you say it is. Just clean it up and do some maintenance on it so it will ride good and be safe. That $250-300 will be a whole lot better spent on a good 80's japanese bike with a cro-moly frame and Shimano components. Those bikes will be half the weight that Varsity is, and with better components. The drop-out spacing will be wider too, usually around 126mm, which means with a good steel cro-moly frame you can spread just 4mm to accept a modern 130mm drivetain, like 8-10 speed.

I started with a mid 80's Fuji road bike I bought at a yard sale for $35. It weighed 28 lbs with a lower level cro-moly frame and it was a good bike. I put 1600 miles on that bike in six months until I bought a really high end bike.


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