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What is the better bike? Old vs New

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What is the better bike? Old vs New

Old 04-21-23, 09:33 AM
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RoadWearier
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What is the better bike? Old vs New

I like the vintage appeal of the 1975 Schwinn Continental but he won't take less than $180.

The Trek 7100 Multitrack can be had for $75. I'm guessing that's the way to go even though it's kind of a Corolla of bikes.

This is for Commuting and rides around the city 10-20 miles

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Old 04-21-23, 12:15 PM
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I would go with the trek... its a better bike and with the lower price!
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Old 04-21-23, 12:29 PM
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Neither.
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Old 04-21-23, 01:48 PM
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If this is the only choice available my considerations, from photo only, would be:

1. Neither has adequate fenders so adder.
2. Rack is needed adder for the Trek.
3. The Trek tire width, front suspension and flat bar/controls position is better suited for in-town maneuverability.
4. The Schwinn drop bar is probably better suited to 20 mile rides, though the stem mounted shifter is generally associated with a heavy frame.
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Old 04-24-23, 09:31 PM
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Definitely the Trek. I put a Schwinn Varsity frame on the curb a few weeks back. It was quickly gone, and I was glad to be rid of it.

Phenomenally heavy frame set. Steel rims are a non-starter for me, as they have no braking in wet weather. And the Schwinn steel rims of that era were easy to bend out of shape. Also, 27 inch tires are getting harder and harder to find.

A suspension bike wouldn't be my first choice for commuting, but between the two choices, is the lesser of evils. If the suspension can be locked out, I'd do it. The Trek is likely to be ready to ride save for maybe lubrication and new brake pads.
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Old 04-24-23, 09:39 PM
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Would also say neither and to keep looking. The Schwinn's main deficit is braking which it will be awful at and you want good braking while commuting. The 7100 will do 10mi rides nicely but you'll really start to notice the drag by 20mi. The sportier trek 7.1fx would be a better way to go, similarly the cannondale quick.
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Old 04-24-23, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth
Would also say neither and to keep looking. The Schwinn's main deficit is braking which it will be awful at and you want good braking while commuting. The 7100 will do 10mi rides nicely but you'll really start to notice the drag by 20mi. The sportier trek 7.1fx would be a better way to go, similarly the cannondale quick.
With all my love for Schwinn, this is true.
If we talk only about OPís options, Iíll pick Trek.
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Old 04-26-23, 06:01 PM
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$180 for an almost 50 year-old Schwinn Continental is offensive. Even at 1/3 that price, you would still have a 40 lb, uncomfortable bike that doesn’t stop or operate well. The Trek is very much not my cup of tea, but at least the price seems fair.
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Old 04-26-23, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Gresp15C
Definitely the Trek. I put a Schwinn Varsity frame on the curb a few weeks back. It was quickly gone, and I was glad to be rid of it.

Phenomenally heavy frame set. Steel rims are a non-starter for me, as they have no braking in wet weather. And the Schwinn steel rims of that era were easy to bend out of shape. Also, 27 inch tires are getting harder and harder to find.

A suspension bike wouldn't be my first choice for commuting, but between the two choices, is the lesser of evils. If the suspension can be locked out, I'd do it. The Trek is likely to be ready to ride save for maybe lubrication and new brake pads.
I once rode a Schwinn Varsity with steel rims in the rain down a big hill in Daly City (near San Francisco). Once.
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Old 04-26-23, 07:56 PM
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A '90s Trek Multitrack with a steel frame and rigid fork would be a lot better, in my opinion.
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Old 04-26-23, 10:36 PM
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The schwinn at 1/4 the price is the basis of a low-budget vintage American steel project. As a daily rider as-is, forget about it.

$180? Not even for a Super Sport.

Trek will get it done.
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Old 04-27-23, 01:50 PM
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The 20 year old bike that was $300 in 2003 is the "new" one, ha. $75 would about fill up the gas tank on the minvan once
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Old 04-27-23, 06:55 PM
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If you're set on one or the other, the only way to tell is to ride them both. If neither are comfortable, then suck it up and wait for a better bike to come along.

ETA: Wow, Chattanooga's CL is grim! What do you guys think of this Columbia? Not super high-end, but the pickings are slim. OP, you might either look for a bike co-op or a new bike. Good luck.

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Old 04-27-23, 08:13 PM
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Thanks guys. I'll keep looking. Those old Schwinns must be really bad
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Old 04-27-23, 08:37 PM
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The old Chicago Schwinns are not bad, they are fantastic bicycles, but they are not good commuter bikes. They're the kind of bike a person takes out on a Sunday morning ride to meet some friends at the local art museum or a short ride for fun (because riding should be fun) on a 60+ year-old bike. They're definitely not a bike I would use on my somewhat hilly 12 mile commute to and from work, that's for sure. They're good for collectors and nostalgia. Also work well for anchoring large ships and permanent navigation buoys.
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Old 04-27-23, 10:31 PM
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Not sure your size but this is a step in the right direction

Still older but a lighter ride and speedier than the trek.
https://chattanooga.craigslist.org/b...607271473.html
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Old 04-28-23, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Squeeze
A '90s Trek Multitrack with a steel frame and rigid fork would be a lot better, in my opinion.
Depending on your local pickings I'd purchase that Trek now and use it. All the while keeping a daily lookout on CL for an upgrade, perhaps like the one mentioned in the above quote.
On the other hand that Trek might just be fine for your purposes and no need to look further.
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Old 04-28-23, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by RoadWearier
Thanks guys. I'll keep looking. Those old Schwinns must be really bad
They weren't made to be bad. When Schwinn invented this bike in the 1960's they were about the only US company mass-producing derailleur bikes for adults. They made it in the same factory as the kid bikes and the cruisers so it's made much the same in spite of looking like a racing bike. Their competition was Raleigh 3-speeds, because 10 speed derailleur racing bikes were only sold to a few weirdo hobbyists. They had a separate special shop in the factory for racing bikes called Paramounts. But Schwinn was the best quality of the time, and they have hard chrome and good paint, and they chose tough derailleurs and freewheels. They last. I mean look at it, it's fifty years old give or take. Nothing is obviously wrong with it.

The 1970s early bike boom changed the equation. Compared to almost any bike from the mid 70s onward, they are not great to ride. Containing almost no aluminum, they weigh more than forty pounds. The steel rims make for poor braking. The shifting is not indexed or ratcheted. The gearing has a pretty short range in spite of pretty large shifts. People noticed. The bike stayed the same but the value proposition changed. Their lunch was totally eaten by French, and then Japanese copies of French style racing bikes in the mid 70s. Schwinn sold many such bikes themselves, undermining their own production. Schwinn died in the early 90's. Now its ghost is a brand decal for Walmart bikes.

The Trek is not a great bike either. It's about the bottom of the commuter lineup 20 years ago. Compared to the Schwinn it was not built to last forever. It has cheap components with some plastic bits that you surely shouldn't trust not to crack up after 20 years and the plating on the steel parts isn't great. If you don't see any rust or fading then it's been kept indoors all this time, that's good. It's got a pogo stick suspension fork. Whether that's good or not is a whole debatable topic by itself.

Either one of them deserves an inspection and some grease in all the bearings before you rely on them. My guess would be the Schwinn has had that and the Trek hasn't
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Old 04-28-23, 12:07 PM
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I ride every day on a well over 15 year old corratec bike and the bike itself was ok so far I guess
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Old 04-29-23, 11:12 AM
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Thanks for the replies! Fwiw I bought a Trek 7.2 FX for $105 instead. Works fine except the front derailleur won't shift to the highest gear. I'm going to look at it but I'm hesitant to fool with the limit screws since I don't have a bike stand and I really don't want to test my adjustments by riding it. I've watched videos on adjusting and I'm thinking it might be safer to just spend the $30 and let an expert deal with it.
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Old 05-06-23, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by RoadWearier
Thanks for the replies! Fwiw I bought a Trek 7.2 FX for $105 instead. Works fine except the front derailleur won't shift to the highest gear. I'm going to look at it but I'm hesitant to fool with the limit screws since I don't have a bike stand and I really don't want to test my adjustments by riding it. I've watched videos on adjusting and I'm thinking it might be safer to just spend the $30 and let an expert deal with it.
RJ the Bike Guy on YouTube has a few front derailleur videos. This one might help.
EDIT: If you can't see it (a common problem right now), quote my post and the link will show up.


Well that wasn't as useful as I'd hoped, but Calvin of course has what you need.


Last edited by Korina; 05-06-23 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 05-08-23, 07:20 PM
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The Trek should be a good all round bike. I've learned something about derailers on old bikes, which is to try and figure out how they work, and why they are not working, before attempting adjustment. For instance backing out the limit screws won't help if something else is preventing the derailer from reaching its full travel. On a lot of bikes, lubrication of the derailer pivots, and where the cable goes under the bottom bracket, followed by just exercising it back and forth to help the oil work its way in, will work wonders. Some mainstream household oil is sufficient for this.

Every problem should have a cause. Very close watching of what the mechanism is doing will also let you familiarize yourself with how it works.

Next, you can give the cable a bit of extra pull by just grabbing the bare cable that runs down the frame and seeing if you can pull further than the shifter is pulling it. If you can make it shift that way, then the limit screws are not the issue.
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Old 05-21-23, 08:54 PM
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Those 2 bikes seem not to be the same size, what size frame do you usually ride pn? good fit on a frame for your body size is very crucial for comfortable enjoyable riding

Edit: I see you bought the Trek, hope you enjoy riding it and every once in awhile a bike stand pops up for sale for cheap on CL bike parts

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Old 05-23-23, 08:21 PM
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@RoadWearier, did you ever get the derailleur working? How do you like the bike?
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