This week for our Readers’ Rides post, we’re featuring Krishna‘s 1991 Schwinn Paramount PDG Series 90 in all its early 90’s glory, so read on for words and photos by Krishna below!
An old roommate of mine had this bike setup as a BMX inspired, single-speed cruiser with riser bars. It was way too small for him so it worked like this but I immediately saw it was my size and wow, I wanted it. I had been gradually reducing the overlap in my fleet of bikes and wanted a drop bar mtb project with a 2.0 x 26” tire. I traded a steel road bike I had in the shed and it’s off to the races.
This Paramount PDG was made in Waterford in 1991 and one of the last years of rigid bikes. It was the top of the line for that year and originally had full Suntour XC Pro with thumb shifters and some crazy Tange externally butted tubing and bent stays. Some were labeled Paramounts and some, like this one, labeled Schwinn. Either way, this bike is great to ride. I have never had any other bike that got so many compliments and questions.
First, this same roommate fixed a small crack at the bottom of the binder slot, where the seat stays meet the frame. I masked it and gave it a decent paint and clear coat job. From then on, the build followed the plan of nice parts without going crazy on price. The plan is a rider, not a restoration so many parts also came out of the parts bin. New Rhynolite wheels built around XTR front hub and an LX rear with Maxxis DTH tires were a great start. These tires are perfect on this bike, light enough to feel good on pavement and great traction on the trail.
Amazingly strong road pull Tektro V brakes mated to my favorite Shimergo setup. Campagnolo 10 speed Chorus Ergo shifters with an 8-speed cassette, 9 speed XT rear der and 9-speed chain. Top pull Shimano CX front der is stiff and works great. Early 80’s vintage Shimano Deore 50.4 BCD cranks with new 26-40 TA rings and Velo Orange bolts. This uses the original WTB grease guard bottom bracket and it all plays nicely. Soma Highway 1 bars for the short and shallow win and profile design 1 1/8th quill stem in super short in the cockpit.
Crane bell for the ding ding and a modern flite for the saddle makes this bike so comfortable. Oveja Negra makes the perfect frame bag for this frame. Like so many of my bikes, this is a work in progress with plans to add cantilevers to the rear and restore the cable routing to it’s original glory. Also, I’d like better pedals and a custom steel stem.
The most interesting part is this bike just feels good to ride. It’s fast enough on pavement and once you hit the dirt, it flies.
We’d like to thank all of you who have submitted Readers Rides builds to be shared over here. The response has been incredible and we have so many to share over the next few months. Feel free to submit your bike, listing details, components, and other information. You can also include a portrait of yourself with your bike and your Instagram account! Please, shoot landscape-orientation photos, not portrait. Thanks!