It was even more fun selling the bikes to you guys on a wholesale level. I would take an order and the warehouse would ship it to the dealer. On my next visit we would see what exactly came out of the box. It was not unusual to have bikes from the same shipment be equiped with different gear.
It was the bike boom and many items were out of stock on a regular basis. So whatever purchasing could scavenge from the suppliers was bolted on , packaged, and shipped.
Not saying it was a good thing, but simply the way it was back then.
I constantly chuckle when some one says that an early to mid 70s bicycle only came equipped one way because the catalogue said so. All manufactures also have a phrase in their literature that states that they reserve the right to make changes without notice.
Nick Zatezalo Atlanta,Ga
Hey Don: I was selling those bikes in 1973-4 and I can tell you that you never knew what to expect out of the box in terms of tires, freewheels and chains. And occasionally even different bars, stems and rims would show up. It was the bike boom days and they were cranking them out at a crazy rate. Quality control could be... shall we say "challenging" too!
Greensboro, North Carolina