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Serial number confusion!

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LividBuffalo

On Training Wheels
Hello All,

I’m new to this site as I have recently pulled my deceased father’s Schwinn out of my attic. I’ve had it in my attic for nearly 20 years and ive made it to a point in my life where I’m interested in possibly restoring it. Sometime in the late 90s early, thousands my father disassembled it and unfortunately sanded down the frame and sprayed it with red primer. It doesn’t look like he altered any of the other parts and they’re all just sitting in a box. He also ordered a few “new old stock” parts, such as a basket and a headlight in hopes to restore it. Sadly he passed away and never got to relive the joy of his childhood bike.

Now that I’ve given a little history, I’ll get to my issue. In 2002 my father gave me a picture of a Schwinn phantom and told me that’s how the bike was supposed to look. About it, but the fenders are still original paint and they’re not chrome, most of the phantoms that I’m finding have chrome fenders. I was able to locate the serial number on the left axel bracket. I tried looking it up online, through this website actually, unable to located. The serial number listed is E78767. if anyone knows the year and the model for this frame or can direct me in the direction of finding out, I would greatly appreciate it. Starting to wonder if it’s possible that all of these parts are not original to this one bicycle.

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Panther would have had chrome fenders as well. These were the catalog options for that frame in 1952.

1952_04.jpg


1952_05.jpg


1952_02.jpg


Since the serial is late in 52, it may have been built up as a 53 model. Options from 1953 catalog...

1953_04.jpg


1953_01a.jpg
I'm not sure why there wasn't an unequipped model pictured in 53, but I'm sure the department store badged bikes offered an unequipped straight bar model.

1953.jpg
 
Panther would have had chrome fenders as well. These were the catalog options for that frame in 1952.

View attachment 2061548

View attachment 2061547

View attachment 2061549

Since the serial is late in 52, it may have been built up as a 53 model. Options from 1953 catalog...

View attachment 2061551

View attachment 2061550 I'm not sure why there wasn't an unequipped model pictured in 53, but I'm sure the department store badged bikes offered an unequipped straight bar model.

View attachment 2061552

The 1953 unequipped is the meteor. And that model changed to the wasp in 1954. It had a frame change to the cantilever
 
Let's see the rest of the parts. This was never a Phantom because the frame is totally different.
Thanks y’all for the rapid and informative responses. Here are some pics of all the pieces and parts. The headlight, basket,tires,and rims were not original to this bike. My father purchased them around 1999-2002. Looks like light and basket are original to time period, not sure about rims.

46C9F441-4529-4B16-9764-847AE788D4DF.jpeg


5016E97D-B365-4F0A-8240-94D7588F496C.jpeg


A29E806E-A945-44A5-AD1E-EB7EB17C5BA7.jpeg


5CA7AD41-6E4A-4865-8B9F-41F226C548E3.jpeg


37882235-CF5B-45F6-884E-AE1F56DC1C52.jpeg


E8A6BFD5-BC7A-4CB2-8FBF-DBFEC8C6AD26.jpeg
 
Hmmm, your statement about wondering if any of the parts are original to the bike. After looking at them it's hard to say. The rear carrier is not Schwinn. The front fender looks smaller like a middleweight fender. The springer fork could have been original and those were available on most models at extra cost, just the Phantom and Panther had them as standard equipment. The Phantom would have had a locking springer fork. The tank doesn't look like it has any chrome like the Panther but need more pics of it. Those were chromed and then paint detailing added. The Hornet tank was all paint. I'd guess that may have been a Hornet with an optional springer fork. Or a beater with random parts. With no original paint on the frame you can't match any of the parts with the frame. Since it wasn't a Phantom, I'm not sure doing a full-on restoration with what you have would be a worthwhile endeavor. Do a tribute bike and make it how you want it.
 
Looks like just a conglomeration of parts. Agree with above plus wheels are modern and not correct for any Schwinn.
 
You may be able to find traces of the original paint under the bearing cups on the frame. Looks like they were left in place when the frame was primered. If your dad was showing you photos of a phantom he was probably shooting for a black and red combo with white pin stripes. If it were me I’d use every thing I could that dad had and do it as a tribute to him. Won’t be an original style bike but sure will look great! My two cents
 
Hmmm, your statement about wondering if any of the parts are original to the bike. After looking at them it's hard to say. The rear carrier is not Schwinn. The front fender looks smaller like a middleweight fender. The springer fork could have been original and those were available on most models at extra cost, just the Phantom and Panther had them as standard equipment. The Phantom would have had a locking springer fork. The tank doesn't look like it has any chrome like the Panther but need more pics of it. Those were chromed and then paint detailing added. The Hornet tank was all paint. I'd guess that may have been a Hornet with an optional springer fork. Or a beater with random parts. With no original paint on the frame you can't match any of the parts with the frame. Since it wasn't a Phantom, I'm not sure doing a full-on restoration with what you have would be a worthwhile endeavor. Do a tribute bike and make it how you want it.
I like the tribute bike idea, that’s what I have been thinking about. Thanks!
You may be able to find traces of the original paint under the bearing cups on the frame. Looks like they were left in place when the frame was primered. If your dad was showing you photos of a phantom he was probably shooting for a black and red combo with white pin stripes. If it were me I’d use every thing I could that dad had and do it as a tribute to him. Won’t be an original style bike but sure will look great! My two cents
 
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