Owner comments on how to assemble Schwinn Meridian:
The bike comes well packed in the box. (about 51″ long, 30″ high, and 11″ thick) Good thing most of it is already assembled.. such as the brakes and gear/sprockets.
The wheels and tubes are common 26″ – already assembled, but you may have to put some air in the tires (40 to 65 psi) using a bicycle pump.
There is not a specific manual included with the bike. They do include a basic Schwinn manual and a paper with some instructions. Be careful opening the box.. check for loose screws in the bottom, etc. For missing screws/nuts/washers, you can get them for a few cents at your local hardware store.
Here’s what you will have to assemble (may be someone can assist you; may be even a fee under $20 if necessary):
Have some wrenches and socket wrenches available. A cresent-adjustable wrench is good to have. A typical cross tipped screwdriver.
You will have to put the handlebars on..I think its a 5mm allen/hex wrench. Also check the Schwinn manual that comes with the bike. It has some information about bike assembly, but not specificaly for the 3-wheel bikes.
You will also have to put the “rear wheel assembly/axel” on. For this, there are 2 bolts and nuts/washers that hold it on each side. I have the nuts facing outwards for easier access. They are square near the end and will go into a square hole or cut out in the bike frame. Putting these bolts on is a bit difficult at first, but once you have done it, its basically easily.
The small chain. Caution, don’t loose the parts when you take them out of the bag. There is a piece of chain and a flat “spring clamp” piece that will hold that piece of chain in place.
The front and rear wheels. The front wheel’s axel is typical of any bike and is different than the rear wheels. The front wheel is easily removable with a “lever clamp” fastener. For the rear wheels, the right side axel is shaped like a “D” (not round) and will only take the corresponding wheel with the “D” axel area. The other rear wheel has only the special bearings for its axel and no “D” area.
You may have to adjust the break pads/shoes so that they are in the center of the rim area and are not hitting the rim as you ride.
The pedals. Note, one pedal goes on clockwise, and the other pedal goes on counter-clockwise.
The seat. The seat is good for most, but some larger adults claim a bigger seat would be good. I think there is bigger seats at K-mart or online. One is basically a large semi-hard plastic seat.
The wheel fenders.
The basket (weighs about 10 lbs). Often the store/internet images show a silver looking basket…but usually you get a black painted one so it does not rust. If someone has weak legs then you can probably keep the basket off initially.
We put a small light in the front. Its held on by two pipe/band clamps…one within the other. One is around the handlebars..and the one around the flashlight goes through the one on the handlebars.
We also put a rear flashing/reflector on.
You should get a bike lock.. or 2 if they are short, that you can connect together. If you cannot find an object to lock it near, then place the chain/locks through the front sprocket gear or pedals if you dont expect to be away from the bike long.
The back end of the bike is somewhat heavy, may be 40lbs. The front is light and can be picked up if necessary to move the bike around.
When riding a heavy bike its more difficult to begin pedaling, but once your moving about 2 miles per hour, the bike almost pushes itself. We found to help you ride the bike: when you turn right, lean right, and when you turn left, lean left. In short, lean the direction you are turning, since this will essentially force your weight into/against the seat and provide increased stability. If you lean the wrong way, you may tip over, especially if your on a hill.
The bike is a “one-gear” bike, similar to the 20″ inch std. bikes. It’s good for flat terrain, and some occasional slightly inclined hills.
When a person with limited riding skills is on the bike, it is best that an adult supervisor be present (ie. walking along side the bike area). Try to keep on the right side of the road. For busy roads, get off the bike and walk it across; usually with one hand held at the “straight” part of the handlebars. Try not to ride on main or busy roads; find a route or area with minimal auto-traffic. Try not to ride in the rain or wet roads. Parts can rust and get muddy.