Schwinn Lightweight Data Book (Serial Numbers)

Schwinn Lightweight Data Book

Serial Numbers

Chicago built Schwinn serial numbers for the years 1960 - 1969 are found on the left rear axle-hanger or fork-end on the frame; for the years 1970 - 1979 (Chicago built) they are on the headtube of the frame where the fork enters from the bottom (actually, this begins in April of 1970). The Chicago serial numbers consist of a letter representing the month of manufacture, a number indicating the last digit of the year (1960 - 1964; 0=1960, 1=1961, etc.) or a letter indicating the year (1965 - 1979; A=1965, B=1966, etc.), followed by a sequential series of five or six digits (e.g. A367584 or CB77584). If letters were used for date codes, they skipped the letters "I" and "O" as they looked too much like numbers. Note: This scheme is for all Chicago built non-Paramount models excluding 1962-1963 Superiors, 1964-1969 Super Sports and 1968 S/S Tourers (whose serial numbers are located on the left rear axle hanger and consist of a single letter code for the month [again, skip "I" and "O"], the last digit of the year and a 3-digit sequential build number -- e.g. 'K6018' is the 18th frame built in October of 1966). The 1970 Super Sports with Huret dropouts seem to have used a two digit year ('C70204' -- March, 1970, 204th frame). The 1979 Chicago built Le Tour and Super Le Tour models had their serial numbers on the left rear axle hanger and began with an 'S', followed by the standard letter/number scheme. Bicycles from Japan will have serial numbers located on the left, rear axle hanger, on the bottom bracket shell or on the lower section of the headlug. The number will have a production month letter in either the first or second position and a production year number in the other (first or second) position. Examples: J677123 = September, 1976. For some Japanese built Schwinns the headbadge will have a 4-digit stamping that represents the assembly date and consists of the ordinal day and the last digit of the year (2456 decodes to the 245th day of 1976 or 1986 -- use decals and components to determine the decade). The ordinal dating was adopted for Schwinn's domestic production in 1976. Some Japanese bikes may have an 'X' in the month position of the frame serial number. This was used to keep the physical year of production, for example 'X9' -- December of 1979, with the model year of the remainder of the production for that model -- 1980. This could also work for January back to a previous year. Some Taiwanese (built by Giant) Schwinns have a date code (on the right rear axle hanger or on the bottom bracket shell) in the format 'Gmmyy'. The letter "G" followed by a two-digit month code (01 = January etc.) and two more digits for the production year (80 = 1980 etc.). An example would be 'G0680' and equates to "Giant, June, 1980". Japanese built LeTour (and Super LeTour) numbers (1978) include the letter "S" with a letter for the month of production and a single digit for the year of production (8 = 1978). Example: SC84652 decodes to March, 1978.

For Paramount serial number information go to Waterford's Paramount History site.

Chicago Schwinn Date Codes

1st Letter
2nd Letter
/Number
Month/Year
A
0
January 1960
B
0
February 1960
C
0
March 1960
D
0
April 1960
E
0
May 1960
F
0
June 1960
G
0
July 1960
H
0
August 1960
J
0
September 1960
K
0
October 1960
L
0
November 1960
M
0
December 1960
A
1
January 1961
B
1
February 1961
C
1
March 1961
D
1
April 1961
E
1
May 1961
F
1
June 1961
G
1
July 1961
H
1
August 1961
J
1
September 1961
K
1
October 1961
L
1
November 1961
M
1
December 1961
A
2
January 1962
B
2
February 1962
C
2
March 1962
D
2
April 1962
E
2
May 1962
F
2
June 1962
G
2
July 1962
H
2
August 1962
J
2
September 1962
K
2
October 1962
L
2
November 1962
M
2
December 1962
A
3
January 1963
B
3
February 1963
C
3
March 1963
D
3
April 1963
E
3
May 1963
F
3
June 1963
G
3
July 1963
H
3
August 1963
J
3
September 1963
K
3
October 1963
L
3
November 1963
M
3
December 1963
A
4
January 1964
B
4
February 1964
C
4
March 1964
D
4
April 1964
E
4
May 1964
F
4
June 1964
G
4
July 1964
H
4
August 1964
J
4
September 1964
K
4
October 1964
L
4
November 1964
M
4
December 1964
N
4
December 1964*
A
A
January 1965
B
A
February 1965
C
A
March 1965
D
A
April 1965
E
A
May 1965
F
A
June 1965
G
A
July 1965
H
A
August 1965
J
A
September 1965
K
A
October 1965
L
A
November 1965
M
A
December 1965
A
B
January 1966**
B
B
February 1966**
C
B
March 1966
D
B
April 1966
E
B
May 1966
F
B
June 1966
G
B
July 1966
H
B
August 1966
J
B
September 1966
K
B
October 1966
L
B
November 1966
M
B
December 1966
A
C
January 1967
B
C
February 1967
C
C
March 1967
D
C
April 1967
E
C
May 1967
F
C
June 1967
G
C
July 1967
H
C
August 1967
J
C
September 1967
K
C
October 1967
L
C
November 1967
M
C
December 1967
A
D
January 1968
B
D
February 1968
C
D
March 1968
D
D
April 1968
E
D
May 1968
F
D
June 1968
G
D
July 1968
H
D
August 1968
J
D
September 1968
K
D
October 1968
L
D
November 1968
M
D
December 1968
A
E
January 1969
B
E
February 1969
C
E
March 1969
D
E
April 1969
E
E
May 1969
F
E
June 1969
G
E
July 1969
H
E
August 1969
J
E
September 1969
K
E
October 1969
L
E
November 1969
M
E
December 1969
A
F
January 1970
B
F
February 1970
C
F
March 1970
D
F
April 1970
E
F
May 1970
F
F
June 1970
G
F
July 1970
H
F
August 1970
J
F
September 1970
K
F
October 1970
L
F
November 1970
M
F
December 1970
A
G
January 1971
B
G
February 1971
C
G
March 1971
D
G
April 1971
E
G
May 1971
F
G
June 1971
G
G
July 1971
H
G
August 1971
J
G
September 1971
K
G
October 1971
L
G
November 1971
M
G
December 1971
A
H
January 1972
B
H
February 1972
C
H
March 1972
D
H
April 1972
E
H
May 1972
F
H
June 1972
G
H
July 1972
H
H
August 1972
J
H
September 1972
K
H
October 1972
L
H
November 1972
M
H
December 1972
A
J
January 1973
B
J
February 1973
C
J
March 1973
D
J
April 1973
E
J
May 1973
F
J
June 1973
G
J
July 1973
H
J
August 1973
J
J
September 1973
K
J
October 1973
L
J
November 1973
M
J
December 1973
A
K
January 1974
B
K
February 1974
C
K
March 1974
D
K
April 1974
E
K
May 1974
F
K
June 1974
G
K
July 1974
H
K
August 1974
J
K
September 1974
K
K
October 1974
L
K
November 1974
M
K
December 1974
A
L
January 1975
B
L
February 1975
C
L
March 1975
D
L
April 1975
E
L
May 1975
F
L
June 1975
G
L
July 1975
H
L
August 1975
J
L
September 1975
K
L
October 1975
L
L
November 1975
M
L
December 1975
A
M
January 1976
B
M
February 1976
C
M
March 1976
D
M
April 1976
E
M
May 1976
F
M
June 1976
G
M
July 1976
H
M
August 1976
J
M
September 1976
K
M
October 1976
L
M
November 1976
M
M
December 1976
A
N
January 1977
B
N
February 1977
C
N
March 1977
D
N
April 1977
E
N
May 1977
F
N
June 1977
G
N
July 1977
H
N
August 1977
J
N
September 1977
K
N
October 1977
L
N
November 1977
M
N
December 1977
A
P
January 1978
B
P
February 1978
C
P
March 1978
D
P
April 1978
E
P
May 1978
F
P
June 1978
G
P
July 1978
H
P
August 1978
J
P
September 1978
K
P
October 1978
L
P
November 1978
M
P
December 1978
A
Q
January 1979
B
Q
February 1979
C
Q
March 1979
D
Q
April 1979
E
Q
May 1979
F
Q
June 1979
G
Q
July 1979
H
Q
August 1979
J
Q
September 1979
K
Q
October 1979
L
Q
November 1979
M
Q
December 1979

* Note: N4 = December 1964 (12/15 - 12/30 build dates)
** Note: A_ = January 1966, B_ = February 1966 ("A" or "B" with a blank stamping in the 2nd position. 1/24 to 2/1 build dates.)

Copyright © 2000 Bob Hufford All rights reserved.

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