commuter, culture, touring and style—from the shores of Lake Champlain, Vermont
Friday, November 26, 2010
A Sad Schwinn 5-speed
I have an affinity for old bikes. Maybe it's the simple beauty of the bicycle as pure art and pure function, back when the frames wore lusciously crafted lugs even on mass produced low end bicycles. Maybe it's the classic colors: cherry red, brown or teal. I especially like the metal fenders that come with the bike. The old style bicycles were basic, functional commuting machines that you could pedal to the market, even in the rain.
And so it was that I attempted to rescue an old Schwinn 5-speed from a friend of a friend's garage, but sadly the bicycle has been badly neglected. Check out the bubbling warts on the tires, like crusty hard gobs of tar. And notice the incredibly rusty derailleur. The frame isn't in bad shape and the seat looks usable, but overall it's beyond my bike wrenching skills. To fully restore this red wonder I would imagine it will require some TLC and new parts. I'll donate it to Bike Recycle Vermont and hope they can perform some miracles or at least use some of the Schwinn's parts.