Vintage Schwinn Exerciser Bike

What a find! Picked up this vintage Schwinn Exerciser bike at Savers (one of our local thrift shops) for $14.99. It’s in awesome condition, and works just fine. Just needs to be cleaned and lubed.



I initially picked this up for “TBD” project. I say “TBD” because my shop is full of found bikes, wheels, bed frames (for the metal), and assorted other items that will be chopped, hacked and utilized for future builds. …even if, at the time of acquisition, I have no idea what I intend to do with the specific item.

Because building mutant and custom bikes is simply a [self-funded] hobby, I strive to pick-up most items or materials at no [or negligible] cost. This means for free, or for few bucks at most. I rarely will pay over $10 for an item unless the parts total much more than that.

The other instance of when I might pay more than $10 for an items is if it is unique enough to warrant it. Such was the case when I spied this vintage Schwinn Exerciser bike



What drew me initially to this beauty was the sheer size if the chain ring. At 65 teeth I have nothing that large in my parts chest.  Imagine the outrageous gear ratios that can be achieved with that monster.  [Indeed, later while researching this bike online I found that someone had actually built a grain mill by modding their Schwinn Exerciser bike. Check it out at Baking, Biking, and the Country Living Grain Mill. – Ed.]

In my attempt to determine the age of this vintage piece, here’s what I’ve found by going through the Schwinn Catalogs of past

1973_schwinn_deluxe_exerciser_2 source: 1973 Schwinn Catalog

1974_schwinn_deluxe_exercisersource: 1974 Schwinn Catalog

1977_schwinn_deluxe_exercisersource: 1977 Schwinn Catalog

  • 1978 Model XR6 …. $156.95  Same solid chainring; this could be it as well.
  • 1979 XR6-0 …. $169.95  The control panel is different on this one. Nope.

So, from the above catalogs I can say, with a high level of confidence, that the model I have is either a 1977 Schwinn Deluxe Exerciser Model XR5 or a 1978 Model XR6.

Found this awesome build, on the Rat Rod Bikes forum, utilizing a Schwinn Exerciser frame: A New Twist On The Schwinn Excersiser..WOW!

3 thoughts on “Vintage Schwinn Exerciser Bike

    1. Hi Michael,

      Thank you for your question. I’ll go out and measure the wheel when I get home and let you know.

      Thank you for checking out my site.

    2. Hello Michael,

      I measured the wheel. The outside diameter of the hard rubber wheel is 20″. The outside diameter of edge of the metal rim is 16.5″.

      Out of curiosity, why do you ask?


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