Model?

Discussion in 'BIKE I.D. & VALUATION QUESTIONS' started by Aaronotzt, Aug 15, 2018.

  1. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    Screenshot_20180813-130128.png 20180813_192606.jpg 20180813_200913.jpg 53 Excelsior cant put my finger on exact model. And would be interested in any info on value. It was a barn find. Gunna just get clean and rideable with minor fender work any info or tips would be appreciated.
     
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  2. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    I believe it would be referred to as a DX. The equivalent in '53 of a Schwinn Spitfire.

    Jason
     
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  3. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    It is a Schwinn Excelsior Dx? I do know the spitfire was tagged on the chain guard behind the Schwinn emblem and as ive shown mine isnt ill look further into the Dx thanks
     
  4. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Its an Excelsior that uses a DX frame. Which, in '53, is what the Spitfire used as well. I don't know what model name the Excelsior would have been sold under...if any.

    I mostly responded because no one else had. I figured that if I put out an answer that turns out wrong (I don't have a very deep understanding of Schwinns, yet)...then the Schwinn gurus would jump in to correct.

    Was the serial number located under the bottom bracket?

    Jason
     
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  5. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    The serial number was on the bottom bracket and all i can find so far from Schwinn it was built 5/1 - 5/4 of 1953 and its a J79 which the catolog says its a womens spitfire. But its has the Excelsior badge and the white tips on the fenders without the spitfire on the chain guard. Which is why im alittle stumped. Hopefully someone can fill me or us in on it. Thanks for the lead i will be lookin further into it cause its a great bike and after just cleaning and repacking the bearings rides like new!
     
  6. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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  7. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Okay. I assume that the J79 are the first three digits of the serial. That doesn't indicate model...just date. Also, Schwinn reused the numbers a few times...I have a straight bar that the serial number shows up four times on the list, process of elimination got me to '52 :grin:. Yours is definitely post war...and, it is pre '52 since the serial number was on the bracket.

    I can't find a J79 for a leading three on the angelfire page...so, perhaps Excelsiors had a different serial number format? Or, its just a hiccup? Dunno.

    Jason
     
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  8. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    My best guess is that it is the equivalent of a D97X, '46-'48...though, like I said, the serial doesn't show up on those lists. However, the paint style, the DX frame, no light holes in the front fender, no evidence of truss rods, serial number under bottom bracket...lines up with a D97X ('unequipped', as opposed to D97XE 'equipped').
     
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  9. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    Ok well from what youve told me and getting alittle deeper in. You are right it is a D97X un-equipped. I got the list of what it is equipped with and as far as i can tell it may be pre war but like you said its stamped on the bottom bracket so post war. Found a pre war with the same badge but i cant find info yet on how long or what year/years that badge was used. But im on the right track now thanks for the info and help its greatly appreciated. Ive built many bikes but havnt had one this old and this hard to find info on lol ill keep posting as i learn more thanks again.


    Aaron
     
  10. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    No problem. It isn't the stamping on the bottom bracket that makes it post war (just pre-'52), it is the rear dropouts. For Schwinn especially, rear facing dropouts...

    prewar dx.jpg
    ...are pre-war. Front facing dropouts (like yours)...

    DX Frame.JPG
    ...are post-war.

    Excelsior info doesn't seem to be easy to find. I can't even find where they were sold. Its a Schwinn owned name...but, doesn't seem to sell through the Schwinn distribution channels. There should be some experts prepared to share some knowledge in the next couple days :113:

    Jason
     
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  11. Wildcat

    Wildcat

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    It's a Schwinn frame sold as Excelsior, so that's a Schwinn serial number. The paint looks great so I'll assume the serial number is easy to read and begins with J79 followed by 4 more numbers, all on the bottom bracket.
    As stated above, the forward facing dropouts make it postwar. The serial number charts begin in 1948, before that were all lost in a fire. However, following the letters, I've estimated and backdated the serial numbers, and immediately after WW2, it looks like they started with "A" and each year progressed with the next letter. A=1945, B=1946, etc. Winding up with "H" in 1951, before they began stamping the dropout instead.

    There shouldn't be a "J" with the dropouts facing forward that is stamped on the bottom bracket.

    Sometimes, they switched to the next letter at the end of December, would make it a possibility that a "J" was made at the end of 1951. But yours, with a 79xxxx is too high a number unless they left off at a high number "J" before the war.

    The cranks may have a date code on them. You'll have to pull them off to see the numbers.
    [​IMG]

    I found an "I" number, which throws another wrench into the works. I'd like to solve this mystery. If yours has a date code, that would be a big help.
    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    20180815_123009.jpg thank you for the info i will be pulling the cranks later today and will post the date code. Ive been searching all nite and day and still left stumped. Thanks again and i
    I appreciate any info as this has been by far the hardest bike ive built to find anything about.
     
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  13. Wildcat

    Wildcat

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    A quote from some info I found:
    "What I have gathered doing research and asking experts is that the I J and K serials would have been left over prewar BB shells and or frames that had already been stamped prior. A being the first true postwar serial. Hope this helps. Pm me if you have any further questions or would like to add something to the list. Thank you".
    So, maybe early postwar. From the 1946 catalog:
    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    Wow thats very interesting thanks. Im in the process of removing the cranks so ill have (hopefully) a date code shortly. I have made a list of components that are on the bike if this helps any: Schwinn script front hub, Bendix single speed coaster rear hub with skip tooth gear, sweetheart skip tooth sprocket, built in kickstand, dog leg 1pc crank, messinger seat, Torrington pedels, removable seat post clamp, oval forks(without struts), S2 rims(enamel paint) and the one thing that really is the puzzle piece I cant figure out is the Excelsior badge! If any of this helps any. Ill have the cranks out soon and will post pics. Thanks


    Aaron
     
  15. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    20180815_163222.jpg Ok heres what i found: H-501 and this stamp on the opposite side 20180815_163157.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2018
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  16. Wildcat

    Wildcat

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    The cranks don't always have a date code on them. Unfortunately yours doesn't.
     
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  17. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Good stuff, Wildcat!
     
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  18. Aaronotzt

    Aaronotzt

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    Well with all this new knowledge and still unknowns i guess theres one question still lingering and thats value? I picked this barn find up really cheap and its a perfectly good rideable piece of history. After taking it all the way down even the bearings cleaned and run like new. Everything but the unmatched tires and one grip is original and in perfect running order. I dont plan on selling this piece but am really curious of value. Im now the second owner and plan on passing it down to my son. Thanks for all the info and hope to find out more.
     
  19. Wildcat

    Wildcat

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    So, here's my best guess. With the production numbers as high as they were before WW2, when bicycle production was stopped, Schwinn probably had a ton of bikes and parts that couldn't be completed. Bottom brackets had the serial number stamped on before the frames were made, so a bunch of them weren't used until after they were allowed to resume production in late 1945. Then they used all the stuff they had to keep up with the demand for bikes. From what I've read, Bendix didn't make hubs until 1946, so, I would say your bike was made in 1946.

    As for value, it's an original American made bike in good shape and original paint. I would give a couple hundred bucks for it if I was looking for a bike. I would then take the fenders to a body shop to see if they could tap out the dents for a decent price.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2018
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  20. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Excelsior's have the advantage of being Schwinn, where most of the collector money is at...but, not just any old Schwinn. You also have the motorcycle connection (Schwinn owned Excelsior Motor & Supply Co and made motorcycles til '31)...and the Klunker connection. Even though this isn't the year Excelsior that was made infamous by Gary Fisher, and others, its close enough to give it a bump. So...I would say, its worth Schwinn money plus some...aka, whatever someone would be willing to pay for it :grin:. I think it would sell quick if listed on this site at $200...at the big swapmeet in my area (which probably counts as a mini-swapmeet for the East-coasters and Midwesters) it would probably be listed at 3x, or more, and still somehow sell :wondering:.

    Jason
     
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