7.22.2013

Schwinn DX900

   For many years, landscaping and skateboarding kept me fit, but now I am in a losing battle. I can tell that I am out of shape and this is a direct result of zero free time to exercise. I have been searching for some form of cardio to add to my limited workout time, something I could do while the boys take their afternoon nap.
Vintage Schwinn DX900   Reflecting back to my overweight youth, cycling had helped me shed the weight in the past. A stationary bike made the most sense for my situation. So with this logic, I headed out to our local thrift stores. I was feeling pretty defeated after leaving the first two stores, then we made a last minute stop at our least favorite secondhand shop. Bingo! a really nice, vintage Schwinn fixed gear bike. I laid down the twenty dollars without a second thought and dragged it to the car, literally, it is very heavy.
   I knew it needed a little love, but the ride felt really nice. I decided to set a budget of $60 dollars for new parts. The computer no longer worked and after an hour of trying to revive it, I had the epiphany to just buy a new road bike computer for $10. I was able to use the original sensor and splice it into the brain's harness. This was well worth the investment because of the motivational metrics such as speed and distance ridden.

Schwinn DX900 Redux   The stem was sloppy and I was concerned about stability when leaning forward. This got swapped out as well as the busted seat and pedals. After the parts had been ordered and the decals removed, I just could not make peace with the vintage bronze paint job. I chose to go ahead and paint the bike white, I had to remove the cranks to grease the bottom bracket anyways.
   The last touch was some craftiness from my shop. I had a set of MTB handlebar extensions that I wanted to add in order to take advantage of different riding positions. When assembled, they left a small, awkward gap in the middle. I headed to the box store with a vague idea, and came back with a 45 degree - 3/4" copper elbow that was a perfect union.
   Why would anyone spend time and money on a project like this? Well, we have a small house and aesthetically, I will have to live with this bike in my space. There is little difference in performance compared to the trendy spin cycles which are several hundred dollars to start with. I was able to breathe new life into a gym-quality bike that will now ride on for another generation.

4 comments:

BJ said...

My DX is my baby. I have had mine for almost 20 years. I was fortunate to have the nice silver and chrome ones. I have also made mods to mine with new shoe pedals and computer. I find that it is one tough cookie. This thing has yet to break on me and in just now going in for its first teardown. Which has me a little anxious. It is about the closest thing I have found to a road bike. In stationary form. Without the gearing. It feels like a ride.

Anonymous said...

Hello!, We have a DX900 upright exercise stationary bike. We to replace the
original brake pads. We haven't had any luck. A seat that would fit the post, would
be nice too! Our DX900 bike is like your picture gold color. We purchased it in 1988. Where did you order parts for your bike. We would like some information.
We have looked all over the Schwinn websites, and other companies, but haven't succeeded, Can you help us? Thank you!

Manic Maker said...

Hi Anonymous, I hope the post has been inspiring. A lot of the parts are common bike parts, and a local bike shop should be able to help find replacements. Just make sure you take the individual pieces for them to match.

There were subtle variations between model years, I was able to buy a new seat with an older style clamp and mounted it to the existing seat post. The friction / resistance pads will be hard to replace. If you still have the originals, I would try to remove the worn felt pads from the plastic glides and replace with new adhesive-backed felt from the hardware store. I hope this helps, enjoy the bike!

Rachel Park said...

I am buying one today that also needs a little love, but like you I wanted something of high quality and dependability and would rather fix it up a little and have it ride on for another generation! Thank you for your post I can't wait to go pick mine up after work!💝