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I'm Restoring a '77 Schwinn Speedster and I need help!

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I'm Restoring a '77 Schwinn Speedster and I need help!

Old 03-29-20, 11:53 PM
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I'm Restoring a '77 Schwinn Speedster and I need help!

Hi there! I inherited my grandfather's bike a few months back and I finally have time to try to restore it. My uncle was sort of helping me but with the social distancing/quarantining and him still working we don't have time for a phone call even so I'm turning to the internet for some quick answers and general advice on how to proceed. I will take any and all wisdom on this journey. It's pretty rusted and not in very good care before I brought it home it had been sitting outside for at least 2 years, it's not a complete disaster but I have to change the brake cables and go hard on the rust removal and paint, just a general overhaul I can probably just figure a lot of this stuff out but it doesn't hurt to ask someone who has been through it!

I need some tips and advice on the following
  1. Recommendations for new tires (I personally think they look okay for the time being so that's gonna be a later project but while I'm here I'll ask)
  2. I have a paint that looks close enough to the original; Rusteolem enamel is that gonna be a good/reliable paint?
  3. Decals! (where if possible can I find them or suggestions on making them myself! I can't find anything so far
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Old 03-30-20, 07:32 AM
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I assume you're refurbishing the bike for sentimental reasons, as these can be purchased in near-new condition for about what you'd spend to rebuild yours. I've rebuilt a Collegiate for a friend that's similar. The tires may be the uncommon Schwinn S6 size, which can be listed as the confusing 26 x 1-1/4" or 26 x 1-3/8". If so you need to pay CLOSE attention to the ISO number (597), which zeroes in on this size in contrast to some others that are listed as 26". These other 26" tires (ISO 559 and 590) won't fit on your rims.

I would not recommend repainting the bike. You can likely clean and polish the frame so it looks more than presentable. Touch up the worst spots if you must. Proper disassembly and prep for spray painting is an incredible amount of work, that often results in less-than-satisfactory results.

Decals and tires for your Speedster are readily available on eBay.

"If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going." -Irwin Corey
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Old 03-31-20, 10:03 AM
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As mentioned, no need to repaint. Buy the small bottle of Meguires 105 polish and gently rub out the frame paint. Follow up with Meguires 205 and wax. Schwinn did a good job painting these bikes. You'll be surprised how well you can restore the original paint.

As for rust, a jug of Evapo-Rust when it goes on sale at pep-Boys is your best friend.

Good luck with the resto!
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