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So there I was chatting with Richard Schwinn ...(4 posts)

So there I was chatting with Richard Schwinn ...Humma Hah
Apr 28, 2003 3:00 PM
I thought this was kinda neat ... after the topic below I thought it might be a good time to re-visit the Waterford website, so I logged on. Re-read a few things about bikes of mine's vintage, and saw a table I'd not seen before. I know my bike is a '74 "short-coupled", but did not know the model number. The table indicated there were P15 and P15c touring bikes available at that time, and I wondered if that's what the short-coupled bikes were (the curved tube supposedly gave touring bikes better climbing power).

So I posted an e-mail, and guess who answered? The FROM box indicated Richard Schwinn, the last member of the dynasty still in the bicycle business. A few posts down (Check out this auction?) one of his personal bikes, a Paramount, is for sale on e-bay.

Straight from the horse's mouth!

Hi tom,

It would have been a P12 or P10, just ordered with the bent seat tube.

Sounds good.


Ligon, Tom wrote:

>I recently bought a short-coupled Paramount frame, very similar to the red one you picture in the "Golden Years" page: chromed lugs, half-chromed forks and stays, built in November '74. It was equipped for derailleurs.

>I've been trying to figure out what the model number is. Is this what you list elsewhere (without a description or picture) as a P15 or P15C?
re: So there I was chatting with Richard Schwinn ...rwbadley
Apr 28, 2003 8:42 PM
Richard is quite a guy. I spoke with him by phone several years back. I still remember most of the conversation. It was before I bought the 50th Paramount.
It went something like this:

So, I saw one of your Paramounts on a bike shop wall near here in Carson City, I was thinking about getting it. New frame fork and headset.

Nice, what is it?

Well, it has a gold fork, and is my size (58cm, actually I fit a 57 alittle better, but oh well) What can you tell me about it?

That would be our 50th anniversary frame, it was a mix of Columbus SL and SP tubing and the angles were approx 73.5 square. How much do they want for it?


Silence... You should get it...

So, it'll ride nice?

Silence... You're going to ride it?

Sure, I figured I'd build it up and...

Most people just put 'em on the wall...

Shoot, it's already been on one for ten years, I figured it was time to take it out and stretch it's legs a bit...It'll ride nice?

Oh yeah, nice ride, it was state of the art for it's time.

So, I did get the frame, I built it up with Suntour Superbe Pro, built a Dura ace cxp 33 wheelset with Gold anodized spoke nipples. It does ride really nice. It handles great, better than any bike I have been on. When I first was riding it my friend commented how the thing looked so pimpin' he thought I oughta have purple velvet shorts and helmet to go with it... heh heh

Anyway, I am curious about something, I have a close coupled Paramount Tandem. I think from about '74 also. Were they made more years than the close coupled single? I'll tell you something about the tandem, it rides and handles wonderfully. I never felt nervous on that bike no matter the speed, it always felt on rails. I rode a Mercian tandem for a bit, that thing was scary. The 'Mount seriously put it to shame. Schwinn really knew what they were doing!

I believe the curved seat post was standard on the Tandem ...Humma Hah
Apr 29, 2003 5:43 AM
... all of the pix I've seen of the Tandems features a short-coupled rear seat. Evidently, the feature originated as a way of shortening the overall length of the Tandem.

The Paramount tandems were built from about 1968 to 1979 ... you can look up the exact dates on the website under velorotica.

The short-coupled singles were only available for a couple of years, circa 1973-74. Evidently it was not a popular option ... I can't see that it would actually improve climbing power as advertised, and it may have been a little too strange for average tastes. It was evidently usually a custom order, too, so would not have been a purchase from the showroom floor.
I believe the curved seat post was standard on the Tandem ...rwbadley
Apr 29, 2003 3:07 PM
I have seen a few of the 'Mount tandems with the straight rear seat stay. I don't know if it was a size thing or special order.

I think they made another close coupled model in 74-75 I believe it was called the Sprint? It used different tubing, and no fancy lugs. It may have been a Japanese frame. I saw one at a garage sale, thought about getting it then came to my senses, I have enough cr@p laying about..