Discussion in 'KLUNKERS & MOUNTAIN BIKES' started by jamesdart, Aug 2, 2018.
Mine had the usual sucky front brake but a coaster rear.
I rebuilt several Varsitys and Contis as single speed bikes.
They actually ride much better that way. The original Schwinn wheels must be about the heaviest road wheels ever. I always use 26" aluminum rims from boxmart mountain bikes and a 36h rear coaster hub. The stock rear wheels use a hub flange size that is close enough to the coaster brake hub flanges so you can reuse the spokes. The cranks and ring are usually stock as are the seat and stem, bb, headset, seat post and clamp. Flat bars. The Varisty has that flat blade fork so you can fit a wider tire in there. The Conti tubular fork limits the tire size to about 1.6" max. Takes about 8 pounds off the bike. The stock brakes and derailleurs work pretty poorly. The final and optional step is removing the cable stops. Those like to grab flesh. One sold so fast I didn't have time to take a photo.
Here are some others I did:
20" red varsity with 26 x 1.95 tires
24" yellow varsity with 26 x 1.95 tires
20" yellow conti 26x1.95 rear, 26x1.6 front
28" black conti with 26 x 1.5" tires
Frontier with 26 x 1.75 to replace the stock 650B wheels. Have 2 more in the works.
Those are all great builds @rickpaulos ! The black Continental has a mini velo look going on!
Have you tried car wax to see if that will bring out the shine?
I've made a few Schwinn diamond frame conversions over the years.
I tried to hit it with a buffer, compound, polish... That paint is DEAD.
Ok so this thread has me thinking...
A couple years ago, I stripped this old 26" Ross 10-speed and used the wheels and drivetrain to turn a derelict Schwinn Speedster into a wannabe 5-speed Collegiate.
Here's what was left:
The frame has been kicking around since then doing nothing. But then last week I noticed this thread in the For Sale section for a Ross Diamond Frame Cruiser. Folks made a big deal out of the fact that it was a lugged frame. I got to thinking... is that old Europa the same frame?
Turns out some of the details are very close:
For what it's worth, it appears to be a '74.
You guys have me thinking about scrounging some parts for a build on this thing. I guess something I could ask off the bat is how do you get the rear 5-speed spacing to work with a coaster hub? I've seen the thing on the Sheldon Brown site about placing part of the frame on a 2x4, standing on another part and applying pressure. Is that the preferred method, or is there another trick?
A coaster brake will be spaced at 110mm, the 5 speed at 120mm. Just add 5mm spacers on each side and you'll be fine.
I wonder what width tire that frame could take. Assuming it was originally 26 x 1 3/8, I bet you could get a 26 x 1.75 'knobby' tire in there...
Since the bike is black, I would mask off the decals and give the rest a light sanding. Then spray using gloss black rustoleum to give it as close to the shiny look it would have had originally, without spending a lot and doing a complete repaint.
Yup, one of those bike "lifehacks" right there.
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