1939 Schwinn Paramount track bike
Arnold Schwinn and Company made the best bicycles available in the United States for a large part of the last century.
This Paramount (Paramount was the racing division of the Schwinn line of bikes) is an example of some of their finest work.
Built in Chicago just prior to the second World War, this simple track bike is as well built, and nearly as light, as anything that you could ride today.
Built with the best materials available at the time, the bike tips the scale at a respectable 18 pounds.
Master frame builder Oscar Wastyn brazed most of the Paramounts from this era, and his design touches abound, like the open-ended seat stays and the simple and elegant lug work.
Proprietary Schwinn-labeled parts make up the component group, with silky-smooth hubs and headset, and a light (and fairly stiff) steel crankset. The bars were Schwinn approved, and the adjustable stem could position the handlebars below or above the slider.
The original beech wood rims are still straight today, as is the steel Schwinn track crank (both items that were easy to bend in a crash).