Rawson’s Schwinn Le Tour Gateway Bike

Gateway bikes. We’ve all had one. You know, that first bike that got you hooked on riding bikes and expanded your horizon into the world of cycling. When the fixed gear craze was sweeping cities all over the world, Rawson bought this Schwinn Le Tour while he was living in Ohio. He immediately converted it to a fixed gear, stripping the bike of all the necessary components, as per the norm at the time and rode it like that for a few years before eventually buying a road bike, then a gravel bike, and a mountain bike.

Now Rawson lives in Santa Fe, where he works at Mellow Velo. He’s had many bikes since then, which came and went, but he always held onto the Schwinn Le Tour. Now, it’s built up as a ’round town townie, complete with flat pedals, a basket, wide bars, the same Velocity Deep-V rims it had as a fixed gear, and of course, a bell.

Bikes like this are special, not only because they’re overflowing with beausage and patina but because they represent a progression in cycling that the world of DIY fixed gear bikes embodied.

What was your ‘gateway bike?’