The serial number on a Schwinn bicycle made in Chicago can be found engraved into the frame near the pedals. On a bicycle made in Japan, the serial number may be engraved on the frame near the pedals, on the headlug or on the head badge at the front.
Schwinn is a bicycle brand and manufacturing subsidiary of Pacific Cycle. The history of Schwinn began when Ignaz Schwinn and Adolph Arnold incorporated Arnold, Schwinn & Company in Chicago, Illinois in 1895. The company began by producing excellent racing bikes, and continued by producing a variety of bike ranges to fit consumer demands and budgets.
With the rise of mass production came more affordable automobiles, leading to a decrease in the demand for bicycles. During this time, approximately 96 percent of American bike manufacturers went out of business, and at this time, Arnold sold his share in the company to Mr. Schwinn. Despite the decline in bicycle sales, Schwinn remained among the dozen or so manufacturers still in business.
Since then, Schwinn has made its name by introducing balloon tires to the United States, introducing the idea of bicycle aesthetics and focusing on quality over cost. Schwinn's successes lasted until the late 1980s, when failed expansion strategies led the company to file bankrupcy in 1992. In 1993, Schwinn was bought out by the Scott Sports Group, where it remains today.