2006 Schwinn Varsity at Wal*Mart

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by [email protected], Feb 15, 2006.

  1. I saw one last night at my local wallymart. I was rather surprised to
    see a 'road bike' there. Actually two road bikes. The other was a GMC
    Denali.

    First the Denali. I saw one last summer on Ragbrai when it came in to
    the bike repair shop with a flat. It had long stem Schrader valve
    tubes. Nothing we had would work. The shop owner tried to sell them a
    new wheel. I thought these bikes came packaged with new SUVS. I'm
    guessing wal mart is dumping them now. $149

    Okay the Varsity. Bare naked 'alloy' (aluminum) frame. Tig welded. A
    sort of polished look. Fat aero down tube. Fastback seat stays.
    Vertical rear droputs. Bolted on rear wheel. QR front but no plastic.
    Skinny steel handlebars painted black, just straight thru the front
    open stem. Weird butterfly shifters on the handlebars next to the
    stem. Old fashioned aero brake levers. Fork is steel shaped and
    painted black to look carbon. Aero rims with very long stem Presta
    valve tubes. Good luck to the typical wall mart customer trying to
    figure those out. $199. One size fits all! No mention of sizes but
    it looked to be about a 23" frame. And of course the handle bar stem
    was soooo loose I could easily turn the bars while the wheel didn't
    move. Typical department store poor assembly. Overall this bike looks
    great from 50 feet away but up close is pure crap. All non-branded
    parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.
     
    Tags:


  2. [email protected] wrote:
    > I saw one last night at my local wallymart. I was rather surprised to
    > see a 'road bike' there. Actually two road bikes. The other was a GMC
    > Denali.
    >
    > First the Denali. I saw one last summer on Ragbrai when it came in to
    > the bike repair shop with a flat. It had long stem Schrader valve
    > tubes. Nothing we had would work. The shop owner tried to sell them a
    > new wheel.



    How about a grommet/adapter with a long-stem presta valve tube, or
    slipping a piece of tubing over a long-stem presta valve tube, or even
    wrapping said stem in electrical tape, etc.?

    A new wheel sounds a little over the top.




    > I thought these bikes came packaged with new SUVS. I'm
    > guessing wal mart is dumping them now. $149
    >
    > Okay the Varsity. Bare naked 'alloy' (aluminum) frame. Tig welded. A
    > sort of polished look. Fat aero down tube. Fastback seat stays.
    > Vertical rear droputs. Bolted on rear wheel. QR front but no plastic.
    > Skinny steel handlebars painted black, just straight thru the front
    > open stem. Weird butterfly shifters on the handlebars next to the
    > stem. Old fashioned aero brake levers. Fork is steel shaped and
    > painted black to look carbon. Aero rims with very long stem Presta
    > valve tubes. Good luck to the typical wall mart customer trying to
    > figure those out. $199. One size fits all! No mention of sizes but
    > it looked to be about a 23" frame. And of course the handle bar stem
    > was soooo loose I could easily turn the bars while the wheel didn't
    > move. Typical department store poor assembly. Overall this bike looks
    > great from 50 feet away but up close is pure crap. All non-branded
    > parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts.



    Geez, no name parts with a bad finish. Sounds like a cheap bike. Oh
    wait, it *is* a cheap bike!

    BTW, what does your shop have in the way of a new, derailer equipped,
    non-suspension bicycle for $199 (or even $249) that's a better choice?
    Anyone?

    And regarding assembly quality, given some of the pure s*** I've seen
    come out of some LBSs, I'd tread carefully.


    > But it has the
    > Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    > Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.
     
  3. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On 15 Feb 2006 10:30:34 -0800, "[email protected]"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I saw one last night at my local wallymart. I was rather surprised to
    >see a 'road bike' there. Actually two road bikes. The other was a GMC
    >Denali.
    >
    >First the Denali. I saw one last summer on Ragbrai when it came in to
    >the bike repair shop with a flat. It had long stem Schrader valve
    >tubes. Nothing we had would work. The shop owner tried to sell them a
    >new wheel. I thought these bikes came packaged with new SUVS. I'm
    >guessing wal mart is dumping them now. $149


    No, the Denali is a result of a branding agreement between GM and Kent
    Bicycles, and as far as I can tell, only Wal-Mart is carrying the
    bikes. They have been available from Wal-Mart's website for quite a
    while (at least 6 months, probably longer), and first began showing up
    in most of the stores last month. The popularity of Lance Armstrong
    is the only likely reason for the return of the RBSO to the department
    store lineup. The Denali is not sold at car dealers AFAICD. GM has
    apparently not been trying to emulate VW's Jetta/Trek marketing
    effort; no GM vehicle comes with a bike as an accessory. (In the
    dealership world, VW's campaign caused much sniggering, with people
    saying "Yeah, the Jetta's such a great car that you need to carry a
    bike with you to make sure you can get home.")

    >Okay the Varsity. Bare naked 'alloy' (aluminum) frame. Tig welded. A
    >sort of polished look. Fat aero down tube. Fastback seat stays.
    >Vertical rear droputs. Bolted on rear wheel. QR front but no plastic.


    Plastic what?

    > Skinny steel handlebars painted black, just straight thru the front
    >open stem. Weird butterfly shifters on the handlebars next to the
    >stem.


    Marginally better than the old stem-mounted shifters of Varsities I
    recall. I'd probably loathe them much less than the twist-grips that
    Kent has shoehorned onto the Denali via a three-piece handlebar.

    >Old fashioned aero brake levers. Fork is steel shaped and
    >painted black to look carbon. Aero rims with very long stem Presta
    >valve tubes. Good luck to the typical wall mart customer trying to
    >figure those out. $199. One size fits all! No mention of sizes but
    >it looked to be about a 23" frame.


    That big? They usually shoot for the area of a 21.5" to 22" top tube
    length from what I've seen.

    >And of course the handle bar stem
    >was soooo loose I could easily turn the bars while the wheel didn't
    >move. Typical department store poor assembly.


    Not unusual, but this is not the bike manufacturer's fault except
    insofar as dealing with a company like Wal-Mart guarantees that the
    bike assembly will be shoddy in a significant percentage of cases.

    >Overall this bike looks
    >great from 50 feet away but up close is pure crap. All non-branded
    >parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    >Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    >Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.


    The Varsity was never a high-end bike as I recall; it was their
    entry-level road-bike-ish (heavy, clunky) unit if memory serves.
    Schwinn's overall value (if not always its quality) moved from
    "legendary" to "alleged" to "a legend" as it slid into trouble in the
    years before it was borged by Pacific. The Schwinn name is now just a
    marketing label IMO. Still, for $199, what road bike exists to
    compete with it? *Properly* assembled, it's probably not a completely
    horrible POS, and it might just get someone of limited means on to a
    bike. Fit is an issue that a retailer like Wal-Mart is utterly
    unprepared to deal with in a bike. Clothing and shoes, sure; the
    customer knows what the sizes are about in that area, and all Wal-Mart
    must do is put them on the rack. How many typical Wal-Mart customers
    would pick the right size of bike if it was sitting there? My guess
    is "not many". Yes, in a perfect world, people (both in the company
    and its customer base) would care about that, and there would be a
    guide to fit guesstimation, a salescritter who knew what it meant and
    had the ability to assits the custoemr by explaining it in words of
    less than one syllable, and a selection of frame sizes. In the real
    world of what's possible in a market with limited demand for road
    bikes, zero comprehension of them by the average Wal-Mart customer,
    and no talent in the sales force, it's bloody well amazing that they
    have two bikes that look like a roadie at all.
    --
    Typoes are a feature, not a bug.
    Some gardening required to reply via email.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  4. Adam Rush

    Adam Rush Guest

    > parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    > Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    > Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.


    Are you saying that there are people who look back fondly on the
    Varsity?
     
  5. amakyonin

    amakyonin Guest

    Werehatrack wrote:
    > GM has
    > apparently not been trying to emulate VW's Jetta/Trek marketing
    > effort; no GM vehicle comes with a bike as an accessory.


    That's not entirely correct.
    The Hummer division has a co-branded mountain bike (Montague folder)
    and there are a range of Cadillac branded mountain and road bikes. From
    the pictures and specs, they appear to be decent quality for but I'm
    sure they are overpriced by at least 100%.

    The Hummer bike is listed as an accessory under "wheels" on the
    hummer.com website and is also shown at hummerbikes.com. I don't know
    if the Cadillac bikes are available direct from the dealers as
    accessorys.

    All this really means is that GM is willing to whore out its brands as
    part of some crazy scheme to increase market awareness. As if someone
    would be convinced to purchase a Hummer, Cadillac, or Yukon after
    seeing one of these bikes. In the case of the Denali bike, I'd rather
    try my luck with a Yugo.
     
  6. If your going to lower level to buy a bike
    Walmart,Costco,ect. Bring tools along and go over the bike to be safe
    and not sorry.
     
  7. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On 15 Feb 2006 14:42:00 -0800, "amakyonin" <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >All this really means is that GM is willing to whore out its brands as
    >part of some crazy scheme to increase market awareness. As if someone
    >would be convinced to purchase a Hummer, Cadillac, or Yukon after
    >seeing one of these bikes.


    And in the case of the Denali, any discerning cyclist would have the
    firm association of that name with "cheap and cheesy".

    >In the case of the Denali bike, I'd rather
    >try my luck with a Yugo.


    I still wonder whose foolish idea it was to brand a *road bike* with
    the name of something that's bloated, huge, inefficient, lumbering,
    incredibly heavy, and exemplary of everything that a road bike is
    *not*. On first encounter, my inherent reaction was "Well, if you're
    trying to find a way to tell me that this bike's exactly what I don't
    want, you couldn't have picked a much better name."

    With the Hummer, at least the image of off-road capability is
    reasonably well-founded. With the Denali, which is a frilly lodge
    queen if there ever was one, even a mountain bike would have suffered
    by association.

    As for Cadillac, they lost most of their slight remaining credibility
    with me when they started rebranding a Suburban with their badge, and
    the rest went away when they came out with their rebadged version of
    the Chevy Avalanche, a.k.a. "the world's largest Tonka toy[1]".




    [1] Apologies to Tonka.

    --
    Typoes are a feature, not a bug.
    Some gardening required to reply via email.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  8. Jeff Starr

    Jeff Starr Guest

    On 15 Feb 2006 14:08:23 -0800, "Adam Rush"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >> parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    >> Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    >> Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.

    >
    >Are you saying that there are people who look back fondly on the
    >Varsity?


    Sure, why not? I bought one when I was 12 years old, I paid around $70
    for it. This was in 1967 and it was the bike to have, when riding to
    Jr high school. I had the twin sided rear baskets, to carry my books
    and a very cool chrome cabled speedometer. It was a way cool metallic
    blue.

    Compared to my current bike, or even the French 10-speed that I bought
    in 1976, the Varsity was nothing special. But when I was 12, it was.


    Life is Good!
    Jeff
     
  9. [email protected] wrote:
    > If your going to lower level to buy a bike
    > Walmart,Costco,ect. Bring tools along and go over the bike to be safe
    > and not sorry.


    Most everyone else posts to bash the bike and cry about how horrible it is.
    Not you, crazy. You post insightful information that actually adds to the
    conversation.

    The most insightful post yet. Bravo.
    --
    Phil, Squid-in-Training
     
  10. > The Varsity was never a high-end bike as I recall; it was their
    > entry-level road-bike-ish (heavy, clunky) unit if memory serves.
    > Schwinn's overall value (if not always its quality) moved from
    > "legendary" to "alleged" to "a legend" as it slid into trouble in the
    > years before it was borged by Pacific. The Schwinn name is now just a
    > marketing label IMO. Still, for $199, what road bike exists to
    > compete with it?


    If you can go just slightly higher, I would suggest that a $249 hybrid,
    available at many bicycle shops and (hopefully, though not always... shops
    do vary, but we're not all as bad as one poster believes) a high-quality
    assembly job. Plus a typically free 30-day check, on-site repair work, etc.

    No, it's not a "road" bike, but it does a better job at being what it looks
    like it is. A very functional bike that's reasonably efficient and will last
    much longer than its department-store brethren.

    > *Properly* assembled, it's probably not a completely
    > horrible POS, and it might just get someone of limited means on to a
    > bike. Fit is an issue that a retailer like Wal-Mart is utterly
    > unprepared to deal with in a bike. Clothing and shoes, sure; the
    > customer knows what the sizes are about in that area, and all Wal-Mart
    > must do is put them on the rack. How many typical Wal-Mart customers
    > would pick the right size of bike if it was sitting there? My guess
    > is "not many".


    But they take care of the sizing issue quite nicely, by only making one
    size. :>)

    > Yes, in a perfect world, people (both in the company
    > and its customer base) would care about that, and there would be a
    > guide to fit guesstimation, a salescritter who knew what it meant and
    > had the ability to assits the custoemr by explaining it in words of
    > less than one syllable, and a selection of frame sizes. In the real
    > world of what's possible in a market with limited demand for road
    > bikes, zero comprehension of them by the average Wal-Mart customer,
    > and no talent in the sales force, it's bloody well amazing that they
    > have two bikes that look like a roadie at all.


    There's a certain irony that a move towards "road" bikes makes sizing much
    more of an issue (than it is with "mountain" bikes). If *Mart applied any
    intelligence toward selling bikes that would be more practical for the
    customer, they'd stick to hybrid or mountain-style bikes, with low,
    relatively-short top tubes and highly adjustable stems. But that's not what
    they do. They sell BSOs- bike shaped objects- because they look like the
    more expensive, more durable bikes seen in bicycle shops.

    --Mike Jacoubowsky
    Chain Reaction Bicycles
    www.ChainReaction.com
    Redwood City & Los Altos, CA USA
     

  11. > And in the case of the Denali, any discerning cyclist would have the
    > firm association of that name with "cheap and cheesy".
    >
    >>In the case of the Denali bike, I'd rather
    >>try my luck with a Yugo.

    >
    > I still wonder whose foolish idea it was to brand a *road bike* with
    > the name of something that's bloated, huge, inefficient, lumbering,
    > incredibly heavy, and exemplary of everything that a road bike is
    > *not*. On first encounter, my inherent reaction was "Well, if you're
    > trying to find a way to tell me that this bike's exactly what I don't
    > want, you couldn't have picked a much better name."


    How do you know they didn't name it after the mountain in Alaska?
     
  12. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Wed, 15 Feb 2006 22:58:02 -0700, "Partly Animal"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    >
    >> And in the case of the Denali, any discerning cyclist would have the
    >> firm association of that name with "cheap and cheesy".
    >>
    >>>In the case of the Denali bike, I'd rather
    >>>try my luck with a Yugo.

    >>
    >> I still wonder whose foolish idea it was to brand a *road bike* with
    >> the name of something that's bloated, huge, inefficient, lumbering,
    >> incredibly heavy, and exemplary of everything that a road bike is
    >> *not*. On first encounter, my inherent reaction was "Well, if you're
    >> trying to find a way to tell me that this bike's exactly what I don't
    >> want, you couldn't have picked a much better name."

    >
    >How do you know they didn't name it after the mountain in Alaska?


    Because the mountain is just Denali, and Kent's description of it
    explitly adds the GMC to the name in places. (Not that I'd put it
    beyond the realm of possibility that GM would try to get the mountain
    renamed to match the vehicle, but so far the mountain is just Denali.)
    --
    Typoes are a feature, not a bug.
    Some gardening required to reply via email.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  13. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Thu, 16 Feb 2006 05:56:42 GMT, "Mike Jacoubowsky"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >> The Varsity was never a high-end bike as I recall; it was their
    >> entry-level road-bike-ish (heavy, clunky) unit if memory serves.
    >> Schwinn's overall value (if not always its quality) moved from
    >> "legendary" to "alleged" to "a legend" as it slid into trouble in the
    >> years before it was borged by Pacific. The Schwinn name is now just a
    >> marketing label IMO. Still, for $199, what road bike exists to
    >> compete with it?

    >
    >If you can go just slightly higher, I would suggest that a $249 hybrid,
    >available at many bicycle shops and (hopefully, though not always... shops
    >do vary, but we're not all as bad as one poster believes) a high-quality
    >assembly job. Plus a typically free 30-day check, on-site repair work, etc.
    >
    >No, it's not a "road" bike, but it does a better job at being what it looks
    >like it is. A very functional bike that's reasonably efficient and will last
    >much longer than its department-store brethren.


    I'd expect the average buyer to be happier with a hybrid anyway.

    >There's a certain irony that a move towards "road" bikes makes sizing much
    >more of an issue (than it is with "mountain" bikes). If *Mart applied any
    >intelligence toward selling bikes that would be more practical for the
    >customer, they'd stick to hybrid or mountain-style bikes, with low,
    >relatively-short top tubes and highly adjustable stems.


    Or at least they would add a hybrid to their existing lineup of
    mountain bikes, instead of just having the extremes; knobby-tired
    mountain, skinny-tire road and fat-tire cruiser.

    >But that's not what
    >they do. They sell BSOs- bike shaped objects- because they look like the
    >more expensive, more durable bikes seen in bicycle shops.


    Pfui. May they lose more sales to the lbs.
    --
    Typoes are a feature, not a bug.
    Some gardening required to reply via email.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  14. >> parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    >> Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    >> Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.

    >
    > Are you saying that there are people who look back fondly on the
    > Varsity?


    Absolutely! I owned three of them. The first one (brown), when I was 12 I
    believe, was stolen. The second one (green) was returned to the dealer,
    because they could never get the front derailleur to shift correctly, so
    they gave me another (yellow).

    I rode those bikes places that even now are challenging. I remember getting
    a AAA map and looking at nearby towns and thinking wow, is it possible I
    could ride there? My first "adventure" was during halftime of a playoff
    football game, and I rode all the way from Redwood City to... Woodside! And
    back. Then it was up to Skyline with a good friend of mine; I had a rack and
    a large box on the back of my bike (I used it for delivering newspapers),
    and we'd fuel ourselves with 2-liter bottles of coke or whatever. And the
    fact that we rode Schwinn Varsitys all the way down into Portola State Park
    and back... that's one steep grade.

    As far as we knew, we had way-cool racing bikes. I remember once or twice
    being passed by very friendly guys in fancy-looking clothes. Unfortunately,
    it's extremely rare that I ever come across the flip side of that (me being
    in fancy-looking clothes, riding past a couple young kids out on a grand
    adventure).

    But yes, there were some of us who really thought our Varsitys were cool
    bikes, and we had the Schwinn catalog, and knew the exact spec differences
    between a Varisty and the Continental (chrome tubular fork... what's the big
    deal?). And thought only really rich guys could own a SuperSport, with its
    brazed chrome-moly frame. Aluminum rims too, but still had Ashtabula cranks.
    Didn't seem like a good buy at almost twice the price of the Varsity. But
    the Paramount... $354 for full Campy. Obviously it must be worthy. It
    certainly was foreign (in terms of parts & brands we didn't know).

    --Mike Jacoubowsky
    Chain Reaction Bicycles
    www.ChainReaction.com
    Redwood City & Los Altos, CA USA
     
  15. Werehatrack wrote:
    > On Wed, 15 Feb 2006 22:58:02 -0700, "Partly Animal"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > >
    > >> And in the case of the Denali, any discerning cyclist would have the
    > >> firm association of that name with "cheap and cheesy".
    > >>
    > >>>In the case of the Denali bike, I'd rather
    > >>>try my luck with a Yugo.
    > >>
    > >> I still wonder whose foolish idea it was to brand a *road bike* with
    > >> the name of something that's bloated, huge, inefficient, lumbering,
    > >> incredibly heavy, and exemplary of everything that a road bike is
    > >> *not*. On first encounter, my inherent reaction was "Well, if you're
    > >> trying to find a way to tell me that this bike's exactly what I don't
    > >> want, you couldn't have picked a much better name."

    > >
    > >How do you know they didn't name it after the mountain in Alaska?

    >
    > Because the mountain is just Denali, and Kent's description of it
    > explitly adds the GMC to the name in places. (Not that I'd put it
    > beyond the realm of possibility that GM would try to get the mountain
    > renamed to match the vehicle, but so far the mountain is just Denali.)


    Leave it to Gale Norton and we may well end up with "GMC Denali
    National Park". :(

    --
    Tom Sherman
     
  16. Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    > ...
    > There's a certain irony that a move towards "road" bikes makes sizing much
    > more of an issue (than it is with "mountain" bikes). If *Mart applied any
    > intelligence toward selling bikes that would be more practical for the
    > customer, they'd stick to hybrid or mountain-style bikes, with low,
    > relatively-short top tubes and highly adjustable stems. But that's not what
    > they do. They sell BSOs- bike shaped objects- because they look like the
    > more expensive, more durable bikes seen in bicycle shops.


    If intelligence was applied by both retailer and customer, they would
    not sell bikes with poorly functioning full "suspensions" and
    multi-speed derailleur systems, but rather something modeled after the
    English "Roadster" or Dutch city bike. The money saved on eliminating
    the aforementioned items would instead be spent on higher quality
    bearings, spokes, rims, etc. to provide a more durable and reliable
    inexpensive bicycle for "transportation" cyclists.

    --
    Tom Sherman
     
  17. > Okay the Varsity. Bare naked 'alloy' (aluminum) frame. Tig welded. A
    > sort of polished look. Fat aero down tube. Fastback seat stays.
    > Vertical rear droputs. Bolted on rear wheel. QR front but no plastic.
    > Skinny steel handlebars painted black, just straight thru the front
    > open stem. Weird butterfly shifters on the handlebars next to the
    > stem. Old fashioned aero brake levers. Fork is steel shaped and
    > painted black to look carbon. Aero rims with very long stem Presta
    > valve tubes. Good luck to the typical wall mart customer trying to
    > figure those out. $199. One size fits all! No mention of sizes but
    > it looked to be about a 23" frame. And of course the handle bar stem
    > was soooo loose I could easily turn the bars while the wheel didn't
    > move. Typical department store poor assembly. Overall this bike looks
    > great from 50 feet away but up close is pure crap. All non-branded
    > parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    > Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    > Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.

    --------------
    In other words, "a classic."
     
  18. Strayhorn

    Strayhorn Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    "Adam Rush" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > > parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    > > Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    > > Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.

    >
    > Are you saying that there are people who look back fondly on the
    > Varsity?


    You bet. My college girlfriend had one - in screaming zonker yellow.

    Or maybe I'm just fond of the memory of her on it . . .

    --
    Strayhorn

    ┬│Excuse me, brother, who you jivin' with that cosmik debris?" - F.Z.
     
  19. Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    >> The Varsity was never a high-end bike as I recall; it was their
    >> entry-level road-bike-ish (heavy, clunky) unit if memory serves.
    >> Schwinn's overall value (if not always its quality) moved from
    >> "legendary" to "alleged" to "a legend" as it slid into trouble in the
    >> years before it was borged by Pacific. The Schwinn name is now just
    >> a marketing label IMO. Still, for $199, what road bike exists to
    >> compete with it?

    >
    > If you can go just slightly higher, I would suggest that a $249
    > hybrid, available at many bicycle shops and (hopefully, though not
    > always... shops do vary, but we're not all as bad as one poster
    > believes) a high-quality assembly job. Plus a typically free 30-day
    > check, on-site repair work, etc.
    > No, it's not a "road" bike, but it does a better job at being what it
    > looks like it is. A very functional bike that's reasonably efficient
    > and will last much longer than its department-store brethren.


    Not only that, but people who buy the Walmart road bikes will complain of
    the low handlebar height, and correspondingly raise the stem or rotate the
    handlebars so that the brake levers are almost horizontal, and buy a huge
    mushy saddle. At that point, the whole thing has *become* a hybrid!
    --
    Phil, Squid-in-Training
     
  20. Vee

    Vee Guest

    Adam Rush wrote:
    > > parts. Non existant quality. Bad finish on most parts. But it has the
    > > Schwinn name on it so it must have Schwinn's legendary quality and a
    > > Varsity to boot. Who wouldn't want one? Okay, not me.

    >
    > Are you saying that there are people who look back fondly on the
    > Varsity?


    Look back? Lots of people still ride their Schwinn Varsities. Old
    Varsities are tanks. They will never, ever die.

    How many of these Wal-Mart bikes will be rideable in 30 years? Or even
    in 3 years? I think they're so inane. Wherever you stand on
    department store bikes, there's no reason to get a department store
    road bike. As I pointed out in the last "Denali" post, you could buy
    an old Varsity or Continental for everybody in the family for these
    prices. And they will never, ever die.

    -Vee
     
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