Updated: June 3/2020

1960 Schwinn Paramount P12

I purchased this bike from Norman E. Timbs' son. Timbs was a mechanical engineer and is best remembered for constructing the 1948 Buick Streamliner, a custom car that took two and half years to build and cost $10,000. The body was fabricated out of aluminum by Emil Diedt for $8,000, and was mounted on a steel chassis. The roadster was featured in Motor Trend, Mechanix Illustrated, Popular Mechanics and Motor Life. The car was then bought by Jim Davis in 1952, and rediscovered in 2002. It was eventually restored and debuted at the 2010 Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance. Prior to building the Streamliner, Timbs worked as a designer of Indy 500 cars (e.g., Blue Crown Specials). Link to the 1948 Buick Streamliner: blog.supercars.net/blog/1948-norman-e-timbs-buick-streaml... Norman E. Timbs was born on August 3, 1917 and died December 29, 1993. He is buried in the Los Osos Valley Memorial Park (San Luis, Obispo, CA), and is survived by his son Norman Edward Timbs Jr. The 1959 Schwinn catalogue mentioned that "Every Schwinn Paramount is made-to-measure to meet the needs of the individual rider; each is a precision made masterpiece of the bicycle craftsmanship. Special order forms and ordering instructions are available from the factory-equipment options are practically unlimited." The Timbs P12 has the optional chrome lugs, stays and forks. It was bought from Lynch Westwood Cyclery (1449 Westwood Blvd, GR 88638), for $245.65 most probably on March 23, 1961 (see Timbs' log book). I'm guessing that he "upgraded" the factory equipment to those on the bike, currently. In his log book there is an entry for a $25.00 deposit for bike equipment dated May 3, 1961. However, I am not sure that it includes the purchase of the Campagnolo equipment as the frameset and its components are described in detail in the March 23, 1961 entry. The bike has been in its current configuration since then. This from Norman E. Timbs Jr.'s E-Bay ad (December 8, 2012): My father purchased this bike new in 1958 and it is all original other than the sew up tires. After riding the bike for about a month he took it into the bike shop that he purchased it from for a minor tune up; unfortunately one of the mechanics scratched the second "a" in the Paramount logo on the right side of the downtube. Dad didn't ride the bike much after that, so it has extremely low miles (<500). This from Heather Timbs, Timbs Jr.'s wife: Hello John, I'm sorry he never got in touch. He says he doesn't know if he owned an Atala. My husband wasn't born yet when his dad bought this bike. My husbands father was Norman E. Timbs. My husband is a jr. Norm Sr. was an engineer.. he designed cars for Indy for a while.. and he worked at other companies in southern California. He also worked for Disney for a short period of time as an engineer. If you google his name, a bunch of photos will come up of a car he designed and had built for himself. He got rid of it at some point because he said he couldn't drive it anywhere b/c people would slow down to look at it... but all of that has been documented online and in car magazines. Norm Sr. was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. His father was british and his mother was american. His father worked as an engineer for National Oil Supply company and designed the basis for the oil pumps you see out in the field today. Norm Jr. (my husband) is also an engineer. He recently sold a company he built that makes uavs (or drones) for the military. It was recently purchased by Lockheed Martin. As for the bike, Norm Sr. bought the bike before Norm was born. Norm Sr. got married around the age of 47 and Norm Jr. came along shortly thereafter. Norm Sr. passed away in the mid-1990s. But Sr. liked to buy the top of the line things.. we have many Leica cameras and equipment he purchased that were all top of the line in their day. So.. the bike was in keeping with that trend.. of course, things changed a bit once he was a father. But Sr. was a perfectionist which is why he didn't ride the Schwinn once the paint was damaged. Does that answer your questions? Also, as for the part you mentioned, we haven't seen any bike parts laying around. If we happen to find something, we'll let you know. Hope this helps, Kimberly UPDATE April 8, 2017 Hi John, Yes a lovely bike. I lived in Los Osos at the time and came out and looked at the bike when it was for sale. I really wanted it but did not have the money. A great score for you and a nice example of an early Paramount. I wanted to buy it for my website to show how Schwinn was influenced by Allegro. Bobby Kemp's Father Jack Kemp was a Schwinn dealer in L.A. Cal. back then and started importing Allegros from Switzerland. Bobby his son and told me a great story of Schwinn reps. coming and being extremely interested in the Allegros, and even bought a couple for Schwinn to look at. Soon they added many features that your bike shows. Bobby now in his late 70s has lots of great stores of the L.A. bike era, his father along with a couple other dealers started the Encino velodrome which ended up hosting an Olympic trials in the 1960s. Bobby also worked at the Schwinn factory for a couple of summers back in the early 1960s. I would like to use some of your pictures on my website to compare Allegro and Schwinns Paramounts of that era. Let me know if you are good with that, I would provide you credit with the photos. My website is: swissbicycles.com Enjoy your bike. Craig Griffith Payson, Az. USA Serial Numbers according to the Waterford bikes website: waterfordbikes.com/w/culture/paramount/paramount-dating/ By early 1959, serial number 949 had been reached, necessitating a new system. The “New” System This system was used from Spring of 1959 to the end of 1965. It was a sequence consisting of a letter followed by two digits, starting with A10, followed by A11 and so on until A99. When the B’s started out, they started with B10. Here’s a table of the codes and their manufacturing dates: A10 – 4/1/59 (Approx). B10 – 6/30/59 (Approx) C10 – 10/30/59 D10 – 4/25/60 E10 – 8/1/60 F10 – 1/2/61 G10 – 5/3/61 H10 – 8/1/61 I10 – None J10 – 2/1/62 (Approx) K10 – 7/1/62 (Approx.) L10 – 10/15/62 M10 – 3/1/63 (Est) N10 – 7/26/63 O10 – None P10 – 10/14/63 Q10 – None R10 – 2/10/64 S10 – 5/5/64 T10 – 6/17/64 U10 – 8/19/64 V10 – 11/18/64 W10 – 3/11/65 X10 – 5/19/65 Y10 – 7/20/65 Z10 – 9/28/65 Z99 – 12/30/65 For the history of the Schiwnn Paramount go to: waterfordbikes.com/w/culture/paramount/ THE BIKE Frame: Reynolds 531. Original paint, flamboyant blue with pinstriping (no touch-ups), and complete Nervex lugset. Disney style decals (1959 - 1962). 1959 was the first year of production at Schwinn's Chicago factory. D33 was most likely built in the summer of 1960. Brakeset: Mafac Dural Forge Handlebars: GB "Maes Type" Stem: Ambrosio Brevettato Headset: Campagnolo Gran Sport with AB locknut. Headset was changed by Timbs, but he retained the original locknut, as the Gran Sport domed locknut has a smaller ID and could not accommodate the Ambrosio stem. Shifters: Campagnolo Front Derailleur: Campagnolo Gran Sport Rear Derailleur: Campagnolo Gran Sport with cable tension adjustment. This feature was eliminated around 1960. Crankset: 1958 Campagnolo Record 5-pin cotterless crankset with 151mm bolt circle, 44 tooth minimum chainring. Raised pedal lip and dust caps. Bottom Bracket: Campagnolo Record spindle with high flanges, and Stronglight Competition cups. Pedals: Campagnolo Gran Sport, with rifling introduced in 1959. 10 mm thread length. Wheelset: Campagnolo hubs (no Record) laced to Fiamme Brevetto Longhi. After 1963 the word Record appeared on the hub barrel. Chain : Sedis (France) Freewheel: 5 speed Seatpost: 26.8 mm diameter Campagnolo alloy. Since this bike nominally takes a 27.2 mm diameter seatpost, a most masterful shim was made in the past - you only notice it when you take out the seatpost. Saddle: Brooks B-17 dated D59 (i.e., 1959)