Friday, October 21, 2011

Limited Edition Missoni for Target and Headbadges

I finally got the Missoni for Target bike up on the repair stand to start assembly and I took a snap of the "headbadge" sticker on the front. I didn't know that these bikes are limited editions, which is kind of a neat thing, even if it is manufactured rarity. That being said, I have several Death of Superman watches that I bought in the '90's, and I'm not sneering at their manufactured rarity today. This bike is number 696 of 2984, which is both a low total production number and a low number on bike, which is pretty cool.

Taking this picture started me contemplating headbadges in general - I love headbadges, and if I had some extra scratch I'd probably collect them on their own. I had a couple of thoughts about the Missoni for Target headbadge; first, that if this bike is such a limited edition, why didn't they use a real headbadge instead of a sticker? Second, that the Missoni for Target headbadge looks a lot like the 1970's Schwinn headbadge.

1974 Suburban 574000/2000000

The Missoni for Target bicycle badge is a little longer, but it was obviously designed by someone that is familiar with the Schwinn headbadge. The oval headbadge wasn't the only one that Schwinn used - or the only one in my garage.
1987 Schwinn High Sierra

I'm not sure when the switch was made to the round badge, but a good way to know if you have a "high end" Schwinn from the eighties is to check the headbadge for the model name. If it is there, it's a better model.
Schwinn isn't the only company whose headbadge will help you determine the relative "worth" of the bicycle. Raleigh used several headbadges over the years, and the basic design remained the same, but the wording under the heron changed over the years.

This is a bad picture. Come on upgrade time/Phone 4S

You can't read it very well, due to the crappy photo, but it says "Nottingham England" under the headbadge on my 1973 International. If you are at a garage sale and you find a Raleigh with this lettering, pay the ten dollars that they are asking. Less than a decade after this badge was riveted to my bike, Raleigh had sold part of its name to Huffy, and had outsourced most of its production to Taiwan, like everyone else. While I love the Raleigh Heron badge, my favorite badge is on my Falcon.

1968 Falcon San Remo
As you can see, the badge on my Falcon wasn't removed when I had it powdercoated, and it got a little overspray on it. In addition, the high heat required to bake the coat altered the original colors in the badge. I've been considering repainting the badge, but I would guess that the only person bothered by the badge's appearance is me. I do think it's an awesome badge with the Falcon, the Olympic rings, and the flame on top.

The final headbadge in my garage is on my Suteki. the Suteki bicycle was the nicest bike sold by Sears, with a high ten frame and Shimano 600 gruppo. While not a 'high end" bike, it was nice, and it does have a very cool headbadge. 

Suteki Headbadge
All of the rest of my bikes have a decal for a headbadge, like the Missoni for Target bicycle. I don't mind the decals, but I do love the way a 3-d headbadge looks on a bike; they remind me of the figurehead on a ship, and make even a pedestrian bike seem classier. The Missoni bike is certainly going to stand out with the paintjob they gave it, but as a bike guy, not a fashion guy, I'm a little disappointed with the choice of a sticker on a bike with such a low production run.

Do you have a favorite headbadge on your bike? If you want to participate in the blog, I'd love to have you send me your favorite headbadge photos, and I will get a few and put up a post with all of your photos. I'm going to hazard a guess that I get zero - but we will see!


  1. I presume that you know you can buy reproduction Falcon decals, including the "Ernie Clements" on the chain stays, from two different places, one of which is eBay.

  2. Yes, Steve. My falcon has some repro decals on it now - if you go back to my 2009 posts you can see the pictures I took putting them on. Don't you have a falcon as well?

  3. My Falcon, known as "Frankenbike," may well be the same model Falcon as yours and looks like the same color. It also had sewup tires that were very nice to ride on. Mine is running a seven-speed Nexus rear hub, but is contemplating yet another mutation.

    Posts like this remind me there are unexpected bonuses from coming around!

  4. Good thing we both know where our Falcons are, or else we'd suspect the other of theft! Well, except the paint is of "anti-theft" quality on mine.