Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Why Schwinn stands out.

The company is founded in Chicago when there are 300 bicycle companies in the US (101 in Chicago, alone).

Schwinn starts its racing program.

By the end of the year, Schwinn bikes have more victories than any other bike company.

In 1896, the Schwinn line is composed of the bicycles ranging in price from $100 to $125 and in weight from 19 to 24 pounds! Six-day races become the rage. Board tracks spring up everywhere.

Manufacturing advances mean lower prices, making bicycles available to children for the first time. A new market is born.

Tough bikes are developed to stand the punishment that kids dish out.

1911 Schwinn buys Excelsior Motor Cycle Company.
1917 Schwinn buys Henderson Motor Cycle Company.

1925 while the Great Depression drives most bicycle companies out of business, Schwinn makes bold moves to increase capacity and develop new products.

1933 Schwinn creates a new department comprised of bicycle and motorcycle engineers to improve quality and appearance.

Schwinn becomes the standard of innovation for the industry. Arnold, Schwinn & Company introduces the bicycle balloon 26 x 2.125 tire in the spring of 1933 - two years later, it became the standard of the industry.

The Schwinn Aerocycle takes bicycles to the next dimension, styled to resemble airplanes, streamlined automobiles and motorcycles. This new aerodynamic style sets the trend for not only the '30's and '40's, but into the '50's.

1946 Built-in kickstands and new styled drop-outs developed during the war, now improve post-war bikes.

1963 Schwinn introduces the Sting-Ray. With high-rise handlebars, banana seat, Stick-Shift and racing Sliks, it becomes the "in" style machine.

1968 Schwinn Bicycle Company introduces the Sting-Ray Krates. These muscle-car era bikes were truly an American Phenomenon. The Sting-Ray is the machine that will farther the BMX bicycles of the 1980's.