Large size vintage frames

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Peatbog

On Training Wheels
Apr 6, 2014
3
Hello,

I built this bike as a road-going bike:

44.jpg


It is an old Schwinn frame with an old fork of some kind. The problem is the frame is smaller than I would like. The seat post is actually still too low in this photo, and the top tube could be a little longer. The bike just does not fit correctly. A 25 mile ride gets a bit uncomfortable. The fork can get a bit wobbly at times also. Are there any vintage frames that are bigger-sized? And at a non-collector kind of price? I am not really looking for a diamond frame. I would like something curvy like the Schwinn frame or at least something different than just a standard diamond frame. I would run 700c wheels.

I just don't know enough about older bikes to know. I have been searching but it is hard to find what the actual size of anything is.
 

Stinky_Sullivan

Wore out three sets of tires already!
May 3, 2013
633
I've asked that question before. I'm 6' and weight 340#. A typical 26" bike is a bit cramped for me. There are "long frame" bikes but the others guys here will have to point them out.

As an interim solution, I've considered putting a banana seat on a 26" frame so I can sit farther back.
 
Last edited:

morton

I live for the CABE
Nov 9, 2007
1,666
York, United States
Tall/Bike Frames Hard to Find

S1.jpg


My Racer is a 23" frame and is the largest "vintage" frame I have found. I think Schwinn made another model in this size.

I also have a 23" frame Rabeneick, a German made bike from the 70's. It's a 3 speed with 700c tires and while a bit heavy, rides nice for long distances.

Another alterntive is road bikes. They come in various sizes from small to huge. I found a large frame World Sport in poor condition, did a repaint, and installed upright handle bar. (also had to recut cables and install new brake levers). It's an 1984 model so it is a bit "vintage, but is a good size for me and fun to ride.

I'm sure there are other big frame bikes out there, but they can be hard to find if you're looking for older bikes or cruisers.
 

sloar

Finally riding a big boys bike
Aug 20, 2011
331
Elwood, United States
I had an early 50's firestone super cruiser, and that bike seemed like it was bigger than most cruisers.
 

jpromo

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
May 26, 2011
3,881
Plymouth, Michigan
Most manufacturers in the 30s offered a 20" frame as an option to the standard 18" frames.. unfortunately these are hard to find and typically a little more pricey because they're desirable to anybody 6'+. If you're only looking for a bare frameset and non-original paint, you can probably score a good deal on here.
 

SirMike1983

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jun 27, 2008
3,198
Inactive
http://bikeshedva.blogspot.com/p/riding-balloon-tire-bicycles.html?m=0

The ballooners were generally built for kids and teenagers, not adults. Many of the pre-balloon tire era antiques have bigger frames. There are some tall frame ballooners, but they can still be short. 20 inches or so is a "tall" ballooner frame but still shorter than many adult bikes. Lightweights from Raleigh, Schwinn, etc often have bigger frames as well.
 

Peatbog

On Training Wheels
Apr 6, 2014
3
Thanks for the information everyone. I didn't even know there was a 20" alternative to the typical 18"ers. So it appears I look for one of those if I desire a ballooner or something in a non-ballooner that is older that has a larger frame. This is useful information to me as I do a search. Thanks.
 

mickeyc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jul 21, 2013
3,245
Rochester Hills, MI
Here's a dumb question....Schwinn and others made tall frame, what I call "skinny tired" bikes. Example is a Varsity in tall. My question, what is the fattest tire you can run on one of those? Would it be impossible to put S2 wheels on one? Make a coaster out of it? Just thinkin'...

Mike
 
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jpromo

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
May 26, 2011
3,881
Plymouth, Michigan
Here's a dumb question....Schwinn and others made tall frame, what I call "skinny tired" bikes. Example is a Varsity in tall. My question, what is the fattest tire you can run on one of those? Would it be impossible to put S2 wheels on one? Make a coaster out of it? Just thinkin'...

Mike
You'd have to do some experimenting. I know people have put 26" wheels on a 27" bike and you can get them a little fatter. Each frame would even vary a bit depending on its size and the taper of the stays.
 
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