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I have already posted this in the vintage subforum, but I thought maybe I could get some valuable input here, as well.

I am new to the vintage scene, but have become enamored of these elegant, timeless steel works of art I have seen online. I am not inclined to move into the fixie realm, but I am working on a old Schwinn, with the intention of having another bike I can keep at work and ride at lunch, etc.

Thus far, I have won, on Ebay, a 1980-ish Schwinn Traveler that has had some parts replaced in the recent past. Of course, this diminishes its "retro" appeal, but ultimately I want to have a very useable, "bombproof" bike. According to the pictures and what I was able to observe, it has the 1020 high-tensile steel frame, which is the heavy one. While I would prefer the cro-moly, is this material still a reasonably comfortable ride? The previous owner also replaced the crank with a RPM crank. My research tells me that this is the same as an FSA crank. Any info you can offer on this? It also has a new rear derailleur, which the seller described as "index-ready". I was unable to identify it from the picture, but perhaps one of you could based on your experience. Seller also mentioned new tires, but gave no details.

In a separate auction, I won a Schwinn moustache bar, with Shimano brakes and Suntour stem shifters. I was thinking about putting this on a Raleigh mixte I got for my wife, but I am reconsidering, since I want an unusual ride. What are your thoughts?

What other suggestions would you offer? I am anxiously waiting for my items to arrive so I can get started.

I will post more pictures once I have the bike and handlebars onhand and can truly determine the situation.

FWIW, this is the bike I wanted, but didn't win.....
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEWA:IT&rd=1
 

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You got a lead sled

Yeah, it is a heavy weight. The Traveler, i think was after the Continental. Anyway, mid to low range on the Schwinn scale. Now there was a World Traveler that had some chrome on the dropouts and forks, it was an orange color and are cool old bikes. You can try researching the Schwinn forums for info on your specific bike which I am sure you will find all the info you need.

I guess your objective is fix it up and ride. Comfort should not be an issue, it should ride like a caddy and soak up the bumps and cracks. I sort of went through the period correct, component correct phase a few years ago. I restored an old bike I had/gave away/got it back. Powder coated the frame, painted the head and seat tube, had new wheels made up with a good set of hubs and kept the drive train as original. The bike is better than new, still rides great. You did not mention wheels, 27" or 700? 27" tires are akin to a 25 or larger tire, think comfort That being said the derailer described as "index ready" means squat if you do not have index shifters and the correctly spaced freewheel or cassette (depending upon what is on the bike). Old bikes were friction shift, so in keeping with tradition, bar con, downtube or stem shifters are the way to go, they will all work with what you have. I have both available to me, I went with DT shifters for now. The crank, I would remove the decal and polish that pup up nice and brite so it looks like new.

You could also post on the retro board as I am sure problems will creep up once you have the bike in hand and start working.

One of the things i discovered is when I was rebuilding my bike to an original condition bike, the old parts just did not function as well as newer. My drive train was early Shimano 600 (Ultegra today) and the friction shifting worked flawless, love it. The brake calipers are center pull which work okay but I am thinking of someday replacing them. I did replace the brake levers with a set of NOS Shimano 600 drilled out levers, very nice. I have been bitten by the the "transform this bike into a solid touring rig complete with a few additional amenities" bug. It is drilled and set up for fenders, getting some Honjo hammered alu fenders. The seatpost and saddle were garbage. Got a fluted alu post and a Brooks pro saddle. Have a triple drivetrain laying around, gonna put that on. Got a leather seat bag lined up for it too. And the last detail, a silver bell. Also have a second set of wheels for it or my other classic solid chrome Schwinn. Going to have a SS wheel built up so I can go triple or single speed. As you can see, the limits are the ones you place on it.

Good luck and keep asking questions.
 
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