Saturday, April 18, 2009


There's a joke that goes around among bicycle collectors: How many bikes do you need? The answer: N+1. In other words, one more than you've already got. This weekend I acquired N+1 and N+2, both for free.

The first is a 1981 Fuji Royale mixte. It is too small for me and I'll sell it after fixing it up, but it's a pretty good bike; it was 2nd highest in Fuji's hierarchy of "recreational" bikes that year. It was in a trash pile in front of someone's house. Yes.... I garbage-picked it.

The second is a keeper. It's an old "stovepipe" (~40 pounds!) Schwinn Varsity Sport, large frame. I took the dented hood from the car my son wrecked last month over to the city dump. They told me to put it "over there" which happened to be appliances and other stuff with lots of metal. At the back of the pile was the Varsity. I walked back over to the guy I had talked to and asked if I could take it. He said people aren't supposed to take stuff from the dump but because I asked no nice... sure!

Serial No. CJ526842 = March 1973 according to

Originally sold by Paramount Schwinn, Harvey, Illinois- a Chicago Schwinn from a Chicago area store!

Looks like everything is there, with some rust and a little cosmetic damage. I've never seen a Schwinn seat that old in condition that good.

That's two bikes in two days. Then again they seem to come in pairs for me.


HeidiTri's said...

Oh Man! That is cool!! Have fun fixing them up!

Trisha said...

Those are two great finds! Can't wait to see what you'll do with them.

Doohickie said...

Well the Schwinn, I think, is a permanent part of my collection. The mixte.... my plan was to fix it up and sell it to someone who would appreciate it, but I've already been contacted by someone who wants me to part it out; it seems he is restoring his childhood bike- a Fuji- and would love to have the Fuji-branded components.

That said, I have other Suntour components I could probably put on there and still come up with a pretty decent bike.

Jon said...

I would have grabbed the Schwinn just for the chrome fenders.

The mixte is a good find, too. I am a big fan of that style, and the Fujis always seem sort of "elegant" to me, for some reason.