1986 Cimarron

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dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
Completely by accident, I finally found a 1986 Cimarron. I took a found WalMart Mongoose BMX to my LBS this morning as a donation to the local coop. The lead mechanic was the only one around, so we started a long conversation. He had been to the Westminster Bike Swap last Saturday, so I was asking questions about what he had bought and what he had seen. Eventually I asked if he seen a Schwinn Cimarron at the show, and that I had been looking for one for a couple of years. He smiled and said that he had not seen one at the show, but had taken one as a trade back in November. He rolled it out of storage and apologized that he hadn't got around to cleaning or servicing it. Then he said, "I'll give you a deal on it".

A little negotiation took place, and $60 later it was mine. It is filthy, the paint is rough, there are scratches from locks & chains & bike racks, but it is mostly original. As far as I can tell the only non-original parts are pedals, stem, seat, grips, and possibly the seatpost. I went for a test ride and everything works (in a basic sense) but it does need some tuning. It is also a bit on the small side for me (20"), but I do like the ride.
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KingSized HD

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Feb 23, 2013
666
Herndon, CA, United States
It’s hard to tell from the photos but I think you may have the corrrct grips. I have an ‘85 & ‘87 and both have the Tange grips. Do a google search for “Tange SK 120 Ergo Supple” and see how they compare with yours.
I have a note that my ‘87 seatpost is the “Suntour XC Pro 26.6 x 300mm p/n 58 420”, you’ll want to double check that though. The stock saddle is a Selle San Marco “Mountain Pro”. The stock stem for the ‘85 was the “Nitto MT-1 alloy head, chrome-moly”, I’m not sure about the ‘86. Btw-The color name is “Schwinn Sunrise red”.
 

1817cent

Finally riding a big boys bike
Oct 18, 2016
336
Ellensburg Washington
What year was the last Cimmaron made in Chicago. Mine is seafoam and has the oddball egg shaped crank and indicates made in Chicago. Thanks...
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
It is a Chicago bike. Fillet brazed head tube joints and lugged everywhere else. BTW, although it has a 1756 stamp on the headbadge, it looks like a mix of '85 and '86 parts, with a paint color that does not jive with either spec sheet. Maybe Schwinn was closing the doors in Chicago and using parts on hand.
 
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Metacortex

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Sep 22, 2012
888
The Matrix
What year was the last Cimmaron made in Chicago. Mine is seafoam and has the oddball egg shaped crank and indicates made in Chicago. Thanks...
The Cimarron was made from '85 through '89 and most certainly not made in Chicago as that plant closed in mid-'83. I believe it was made in Greenville MS.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
The Cimarron was made from '85 through '89 and most certainly not made in Chicago as that plant closed in mid-'83. I believe it was made in Greenville MS.
Thanks. I thought they may have changed the headbadge when they started building in Greenville.
 
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dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
It’s hard to tell from the photos but I think you may have the corrrct grips. I have an ‘85 & ‘87 and both have the Tange grips. Do a google search for “Tange SK 120 Ergo Supple” and see how they compare with yours.
I have a note that my ‘87 seatpost is the “Suntour XC Pro 26.6 x 300mm p/n 58 420”, you’ll want to double check that though. The stock saddle is a Selle San Marco “Mountain Pro”. The stock stem for the ‘85 was the “Nitto MT-1 alloy head, chrome-moly”, I’m not sure about the ‘86. Btw-The color name is “Schwinn Sunrise red”.
You are right about the grips. My left grip is damaged at the bar end, but still serviceable. The correct stem for my bike is a Suntour XC, and I have a lead on that (sadly it does not have the logo button on the front of the stem). I also have a pair of correct pedals on the way (without dustcaps), but I located a pair of caps in my LBS's junk drawers that should be close enough.

I haven't pulled the seat post yet, but it looks like it may be original. Finding a San Marcos 171-2 leather saddle is not high on my to do list at the moment. An Avocet Touring 1 saddle may be easier to find and was standard on the 1985.

I am considering a repaint and new decals since the paint is in such poor condition; but job #1 will be dis-assembly, cleaning, bearing service, and locating the silver/grey housings that look like the originals.
 

Bryan Akens

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Nov 21, 2016
17
55
Columbus Ohio
I remember those at the Schwinn Dealer I worked at during that time.......They were very expensive and a slow seller due to their price.......a very nice ride though!!!! We had one stolen off of our showroom but We did get it back the same day!!!!
 

fat tire trader

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Oct 29, 2010
3,019
San Quentin, California
www.fattiretrading.com
You are right about the grips. My left grip is damaged at the bar end, but still serviceable. The correct stem for my bike is a Suntour XC, and I have a lead on that (sadly it does not have the logo button on the front of the stem). I also have a pair of correct pedals on the way (without dustcaps), but I located a pair of caps in my LBS's junk drawers that should be close enough.

I haven't pulled the seat post yet, but it looks like it may be original. Finding a San Marcos 171-2 leather saddle is not high on my to do list at the moment. An Avocet Touring 1 saddle may be easier to find and was standard on the 1985.

I am considering a repaint and new decals since the paint is in such poor condition; but job #1 will be dis-assembly, cleaning, bearing service, and locating the silver/grey housings that look like the originals.
I think my friend Lee has a couple of those stems, new old stock in the box. Contact me if you are interested.
Chris
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
I think my friend Lee has a couple of those stems, new old stock in the box. Contact me if you are interested.
Chris
I just closed a trade deal on the stem without the button, but I would still like to hear more from your friend.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
I have no idea what the previous owner of this bike used as a lubricant, but it must have been an aerosol. It has left a residue that is practically impervious to detergent. Nearly every metal surface is coated with gummy, waxy, or dried residue, including frame, chain rings, wheels, derailleurs, shift levers, and brakes (except for the pads). Formula 409 and Purple Power removed most of it, but there is a bit left on the fork ends, drop outs, and bottom bracket area. It will still require one more detergent wash before I use auto paint compound to get the last of it off.

A few areas that I thought were scrapes were actually grunge, and I uncovered a repainted area on the top tube that was under the dirt. I am thinking about wet sanding the (badly) repainted area to see what is below.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
Took my '86 Cimarron to the LBS to have the bottom bracket removed (I lack the tool). They were slammed with work and said it would take a couple of days. That's no problem since I have a whole box of parts to clean. Velo Orange is having a garage sale next Saturday so I may make the drive up there mainly to get silver brake and shifter cables at 20% off. While I am there I will peruse their garage sale stock.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
I found a decent paint match, so with a combo of brush and spray the frame is looking pretty good. My aim is not a restoration, but to bring the bike back as a rider and save it from rust and ruin. I was able to protect the decals and intend to use an auto polish when the paint has cured.

To prepare, I wet sanded the frame with 800 and 1500 grit paper. I was careful not to take the original finish down to bare metal. I did the best I could to prep the chipped areas before the first base coat and then began painting. I still have a few touch-up spots that were missed, and those will be addressed soon.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
Here is where I am at the moment. Still need to let it cure and then polish.

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dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
Impatient me decided to polish the three main tubes today. I should have waited longer, but no real damage was done to the paint. The down tube looks great (home of the hardest paint I think). The seat and top tubes look really good, but not like the down tube. After polishing, the paint still retains a bit of orange peel as a testament to my skills, but I'll take the results. Now I have to sit on my hands for a couple of days before touching it again.

BTW: Testors Red #1203 is nearly a perfect match to Schwinn Sunrise Red after it dries.
 

dweenk

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 13, 2014
204
Maryland
Making some progress now, and am working on cabling this afternoon.
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