Such a device that changes the way we work, live, and play is a special one, indeed.
If you want professional, accurate information, instead of amateur guessing, here is where you get it. But the biggest mistake that people make is they listen to DIY'ers and presume they can diagnose their own serial numbers in a snap.
And they are usually wrong. It requires a lot of study and at least some expertise. And it is extremely rare that a model number or a serial number was used for one year and one year only. And forget "using the Schwinn format" or going by the name that is on the bicycle.
Here is a typical question we get: Who made it and when was it made? There were at least two dozen different companies that made bicycles and trikes badged "Western Flyer.
Any ID on that basis alone is sheer nonsense. This is just one reason why we have to SEE what you may have. At least THEN we know where to start looking. Anyone too lazy to take simple photos, but then expects us to sit and dig through millions of serial numbers is mistaken.
And if that is offensive, so be it. You have our blessing to join the WAGS and guess your way to an answer. We don't simply hand out lists. And we don't do WAGs here.
We don't make up history here. And we don't state something as a fact just because "a buddy told us so. It has taken over 40 years and a lot of very hard work to assemble the listings we have. What's the classic era? Can I just send you a serial number and get all the information about my bicycle and an ID done??
Nobody can accurately do that. If they tell you they can without even seeing the bicycle, the chances are most likely they are feeding you bullcookies. This is another rampant myth. And there are other problems. Some people have spread crazy stories on the net that all you need to do is dump a number on us and we can tell you anything.
It's a fairy tale. While we do have the largest and most comprehensive listings of serial numbers for most of the bicycle companies, but we still require photos.
Anyone who doesn't is just giving you a presumptive guess. And nobody can look at even a Schwinn serial number and tell you which exact model it was-except in the case of SOME made-for-motors frames.
We won't pump sunshine your way, just the facts. Although age for many collector bicycles can be provided with serial numbers, this too is a tricky business, not always for amateurs and do-it-yourselfers.
For instance some numbers were re-used, or placed in different locations; or combined with new model numbers in cases other than Schwinn. Some bicycles used model numbers as well as serial numbers, others like Schwinn did not.
Some bicycle retailers such as Western Auto and Sears used as many as a dozen different bicycle manufacturers to make their bicycles, so one needs to know both the year AND the actual manufacturer.
This is not for amateurs and WAGs. People have grown accustomed to the speed of the internet and like to get snap, quick answers or do-it-yourself info for everything. So they just wanna ask a question about a serial number and expect to get a whole encyclopedia back. But this is just not possible for old bicycles.
Quick and easy answers and do-it-yourself info are all too often incorrect or misunderstood. Even with serial numbers provided and they seldom are there is no real evidence of overall condition, completeness, originality, etc.The computer was born not for entertainment or email but out of a need to solve a serious number-crunching crisis.
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