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  1. #1
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    Walmart Schwinn?

    Hi all.

    Long story short, I want to buy my gf a Schwinn Cruiser (cause her MTB isn't great on the road) and I noticed something strange to me.. The Schwinn website doesn't include the models that Walmart or Target carry. Why is that? I wanted to reference the components and stuff before ordering online because the stores do not stock the models I am interested in buying to have a hands-on look.

    More info please!

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    products on line may have been discontinued and what's in the stores is surplus, or they just don't have them advertised on line. if you happen to pick one up from walmart or target, please take the bike to a bike shop and have them go through it. personally i would prefer buy from a bike shop because it's more personal, better costumer service and a better warranty
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8
    products on line may have been discontinued and what's in the stores is surplus, or they just don't have them advertised on line.
    So, the bikes sold at these dept. stores are indeed genuine not a re-badged? The price differential between Schwinn's advertised lowest-end bike and what is sold at Walmart is substantial, like a $200 difference.

    You would think Schwinn would have an archive of their past models for me to reference.

    Here is the bike I am looking at: http://www.walmart.com/Schwinn-Beach...ReviewTitleBar

    They don't have this bike in-store for me to look at, so I am trying to gather as much info about it as possible. I am a bike builder. I don't care that this bike costs less than her MTB cranks. I just want info.

    Thanks.

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    there is nothing genuine about schwinn anymore. and because of that and now that you mention it, i wouldn't' put it past being a re-badge. schwinn is owned by the Pacific Bike Co. it could be any one of the name brands they own
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    Thank you very much.

  6. #6
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    Schwinn is just a name anymore, they're nothing like the Schwinn's of the past.
    They actually have two different lines of bicycles. The ones you see in the stores are indeed pretty cheap and low quality mass produced bikes. The ones on the website and bikes shops are better quality, more expensive, and probably just about worth the price.
    Schwinn hasn't been owned by the Schwinn family since around 93. The company has exchanged owners a few times since then, so really the only thing that's persevered is the name.
    In my opinion, Schwinn kept on building outstanding bike until around 2001. After then came the mass produced stuff.

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    The reason I was looking into Schwinn was the name. I grew up with Schwinn and they made good stuff. That was a long while ago for me. A guy I know rides his vintage Schwinn's to work everyday and they are beautiful, well-maintained classics. I wasn't expecting to buy a gem like those bikes at Walmart (or anywhere for that matter), but I had to speak to the buying power of such a jugernaut and to the price disparity between them and the Schwinn website.

    Again, thanks for the clarification. I will look to the LBS for a "genuine" Schwinn.

  8. #8
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    ebay isn't a bad place either for frames
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  9. #9
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    Schwinn has two lines - the Wal-Mart bikes, and their "bike shop" bikes, which is what you see on the website (like the 405). How much overlap there is, I don't know, but they are not the company they once were. In 2001ish, they were purchased by Pacific, and then in about 2004, that was purchased by Dorel. They own many brands of varying qualities; none of the bikes are US-made anymore, as far as I know. Possibly assembled here, but definitely not fabricated here. Most of the folks here consider the range of about 1995 to 2001 as the high-point for Schwinn mountain bikes. Any Schwinn prior to 2001 is definitely a quality bike, like those vintage ones you mentioned.

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    Sept.11, 2001 was a grim day.... it's also the day Pacific first owned them
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    First Schwinn does have two lines of bikes. The bike shop Schwinns (along with GT, Mongoose and Cannondale) are designed at Cannondale in CT. Bike shop Schwinns are great bikes at their price points and come in many sizes (plus some models come in more than one color). The Schwinns in the marts are not rebadged or leftovers. They are cheaped designed bikes made for the marts. They are designed in Madison, WI at Pacific (along with the mass Mongoose, Iron Horse, Roadmaster, and Pacific bikes). They come in one size and color.

    Most all bikes today are just a decal. Only a few custom bikes are designed, made, and sold all by the same business.
    EX.
    Specialized-All models made in factories in China and Taiwan that are not owned by Specialized
    Schwinn, Mongoose, GT, Cannondale-All models made in factroies in China and Taiwan not owned by Schwinn (some cannondales are still US made but they are closing it down)
    Trek-Fishers-All models made in China and Taiwan noted owned by Trek (except for a few carbon bikes are made in the USA)
    Giant-All models made in China and Taiwan. Giant builds most of the bikes for the above brands.

    The lists goes on and on. What matters today is the designing behind the bikes. Schwinn (and sister brands) are still designed by some of the best bike guys around.

    Schwinn just does not go after the high end brands anymore. They let Cannondale and GT do that now. It is hard to bet them. Also I rode some of the nice Mongooses this summer and they are very nice. People need to stop knocking Schwinn for making some of the walmart bikes. So they are not owned by the Schwinn family anymore. Out of the 10 largest bike shop brands in the world only one is still owned by the family that started them, Trek. All other brands have been sold or are owned by many people and sold on some type of stock market. A family that owns most all of the stock owns Schwinn, GT, Mongoose and Cannondale. They also own some other brands. So what they own other businesses. They also never sell anything. I believe the Schwartz family will own Schwinn for a long time. Owning more that one company helps lower shipping cost and other things. Also selling bikes in Wal mart, they are just doing what Sony, Mircosoft, Dell and many of the other large brands do. They make cheap junk for the marts and good stuff for the dealers that would like to sell them. I bought a super high end Sony TV the other day from a TV speciality store. Sure I could have bought a Sony from Wal-mart but it is not the same. I needed quailty and service.
    Also until the USA remembers that you need Service and quailty. We will not rebound. Cheap is not always good. My father always said, " If you pay a cheap price. You are getting something that is cheaply made."

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    Quote Originally Posted by RudeSechsVibe
    Long story short, I want to buy my gf a Schwinn Cruiser (cause her MTB isn't great on the road) and I noticed something strange to me.. The Schwinn website doesn't include the models that Walmart or Target carry. Why is that?
    What model are you looking for?

    It's probably down to reasons of marketing and brand-image. For whatever reason, Schwinn doesn't list their low-end models on their website.

    Shimano does the same thing. Go to Shimano's site, and the lowest groupset they list for mountain bikes is Alivio. There are several lower groups though, that you'll see on low-end bikes, especially those at Target and Walmart. Shimano's website pretends those groups do not exist.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JonathanGennick
    What model are you looking for?

    It's probably down to reasons of marketing and brand-image. For whatever reason, Schwinn doesn't list their low-end models on their website.

    Shimano does the same thing. Go to Shimano's site, and the lowest groupset they list for mountain bikes is Alivio. There are several lower groups though, that you'll see on low-end bikes, especially those at Target and Walmart. Shimano's website pretends those groups do not exist.
    Schwinn Point Beach Cruiser

  14. #14
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    I agree with bikerme.
    If we could bring at least aspects of frame fabrication back to the USA that would be excellent... Wal mart bikes are good for the intended application, which is riding them gently and rarely, as most people enthusiastic about the sport want something better, but the casual rider who goes for short bike path rides with the wife and kids might not want to spend 350~400 bucks for a bike. Or maybe you don't want to buy your kid a bike they will outgrow in a year or two anyway, so who cares if by then it's falling apart?
    The American consumer is not the same as in years past, people replace things instead of fixing them, so quality has declined.
    As for farming out the fab work on frames, buying and selling of companies and so on... Joe breeze and Gary fisher both, years ago farmed out their fabrication first locally then overseas. But they were still well made bikes that were the design of Joe breeze and/or fisher (I know that is a whole other can of worms)
    I do understand that when schwinn no longer was producing the super nice homegrown bikes, it marked the end of an era for schwinn, and I get how that could turn folks away. But just as bikeme said, the higher end stuff is really no different than any other Chinese made frame... The designs are good, the fab is good, the bike is good... Who owns the parent company and what name they slap on makes a lot less difference than good design.

  15. #15
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    Re: Walmart Schwinn?

    Quote Originally Posted by bikerme View Post
    First Schwinn does have two lines of bikes. The bike shop Schwinns (along with GT, Mongoose and Cannondale) are designed at Cannondale in CT.
    I know this is a 6 year old thread but I wonder how true this is (or was)...

  16. #16
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    I am sure the Wal Mart bikes are not high quality, but my Schwinn Sidewinder, a "mountain" bike works pretty well. It is pretty rough on rough roads and will need new tires pretty soon, but it seems to have a nice frame. I had it set up by a lbs and I sort of wonder when the wheels will go out of true again. I may now have a spoke wrench, on a multi tool, I can use to true the wheels when they need it.

    The gears, to me, have always shifted very well.

    I've had it a little over a month and have probably put around 140 mis or more on it.

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    Walmart Schwinn?

    Quote Originally Posted by ConchoBill View Post
    I am sure the Wal Mart bikes are not high quality, but my Schwinn Sidewinder, a "mountain" bike works pretty well. It is pretty rough on rough roads and will need new tires pretty soon, but it seems to have a nice frame. I had it set up by a lbs and I sort of wonder when the wheels will go out of true again. I may now have a spoke wrench, on a multi tool, I can use to true the wheels when they need it.

    The gears, to me, have always shifted very well.

    I've had it a little over a month and have probably put around 140 mis or more on it.
    Yeah I think that's key; have the LBS set it up.

  18. #18
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    Having joined this forum, of course I would buy a new mountain bike, a Trek Marlin, but I'm thinking about taking the Schwinn to the ranch where the convenient rough riding for me is.

  19. #19
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    I have taken that bike to the ranch I lease from my family and have ridden it there a couple of times, stock. The roads are pretty rough which makes it a very good place to get some practice. The bike has done very well, but this report is from someone who has ridden the Schwinn Sidewinder and Trek Marlin and some Mountain bike, I guess, back in the 90s a couple of times. I am about to put a couple of heavy but cheap tires and Slime puncture proof tubes on it after I get my cattle work done, hopefully soon.

  20. #20
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    Sounds like a fun trip! Glad the Schwinn's riding well for you.

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    It's a very nice place to ride. If they are well set up, these bikes are better than what a lot of people say.

    Cheers!

  22. #22
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    You're right. Schwinn doesn't set out to sell bikes that will fail and they have no control over how their bikes are assembled for retail.

    If Walmart has untrained staff to put the bike together and it's not done right then blame Walmart, not Schwinn. Most likely, the same guys building the bikes are also the one's making the cribs, tents, furniture lol.

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    It's been a while since anyone replied to this thread, but I feel I have to put my 2 cents worth in on the Schwinn "Wal mart junk or real bike" controversy. In my town there is a local bike shop that proudly sells the Schwinn "Signature" line of bikes. The Signature line are their serious bikes that sell at $500 to $1000. I own one of those bikes. It is a 2014 Rocket 2 27.5" Hardtail. It has a double butted frame with a tapered headtube. The components are the same as or better than what you find on bikes the same price or even higher priced. The Signature line of Schwinn bikes are every bit as good as anything that the popular name guys like Specialized, Trek, etc put out at that price range.

  24. #24
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    Schwinn Tourist hybrid = Schwinn Phocus/Volare?

    I have a Schwinn Tourist hybrid which I bought used. discontinued @ 2010 I think,
    it was a halfway decent offering for a big-box store (Target): aluminum frame, altus derailleur, Shimano trigger shifters, paddle bar grips, SR Suntour crankset (cheap but nice).

    It has a 700c wheelset with 28mm road tires.
    The stock fork was steel and badly bent/unusable when I got it---
    don't know if it happened in transit or during use, but I'm guessing it's from use. It's like both blades are bent in the same direction.
    I wonder if the steerer tube is somehow rotated (some forks have a modular/attached steerer tube), causing the 'rake' to make the fork appear 'bent.' I'll have to investigate furthur. I swapped for an aluminum fork (still might try to fix the stock one. I have also been offered a replacement fork for purchase, by Pacific).

    I believe the bike was either 're-badged' as the Schwinn Phocus (3 model levels), or
    the Phocus is very similar (hopefully improved and not cheapened).
    I believe the Phocus and Volare are currently still available.
    Last edited by 2wTrekr; 03-08-2016 at 10:32 PM.

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    Some of the Schwinns are hybrids that can be converted with road drop bars or can be made more like an mtb using wider "29er" tires.

    I found this 2008 Schwinn Broadway at goodwill for $40 in neglected condition, so decided to make it more of an off-roading bike since it had a suspension fork that was super-easy to rebuild.
    Adding the rubber gaiters/boots to the fork legs while I had it apart keeps the exposed grease on the fork tubes from attraction dirt and thus allowing the fork to become contaminated inside with the fork action becoming sticky again.
    The original wiper seals on these X-mart forks don't do their job when it comes to keeping the grease in and keeping the dirt out!
    I shortened all of the too-long old cabling, trimming off the bent housing ends and greasing the wires to restore smooth shifting and braking action. I also replaced the rusted chain with a new Shimano HG70 chain that has bulged side plates for more positive shifting under load.

    The wider 29er tires fit right on, but make adjusting the brake pads rather tricky since the original rims are so narrow.

    I changed the rack to a more compact style, and with the weight of the bag on it with an extra water bottle inside, this really helps off-road climbing traction.

    So here is the before-to-after photos of what is a poor-man's 29er mtb:






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