Wednesday, October 13, 2010

1974 Schwinn Collegiate

So you might recall that a while ago I inherited my late grandfather's Schwinn Collegiate. It spent the winter in my basement with a package of steel wool and some degreaser and a whole lot of elbow grease. Replaced cables and housing, tires and brake pads. I rebuilt the front hub after it was seizing up on me.

I also thought she desperately needed a classic front basket. I went with a Wald 135, which is just about the size of a paper grocery bag.
So here she is reborn and rebuilt:

The best thing about the Collegiate is how much it gets used. I think this is basically for 2 reasons.

1) Super fun upright riding position. I've always been (and probably always will be) some sort of roadie/tourer/etc. But there is something that just makes you smile about the laid back positioning of a cruiser-like bike. You can't roll down the driveway on this bike and not smile. I dare you.

2) Basket. You think it's dorky, huh? Well, it's kinda awesome. It always has its lock in it, and I don't have to go looking for a messenger bag, lock, etc. Need to run to the store before dinner? Just jump on the Collegiate and get the pasta sauce! Books to take back to the library? No problem! Gotta run to the ATM? Liquor store? Haircut? The cruiser just makes it so easy.

The chainguard is nice too. Just a simple little thing. But it's nice. The best bikes are the ones you ride. That is why the Collegiate is such a great bike. It gets ridden.

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