The Schwinn Aerocycle is legendary when it comes to vintage bicycles, as it was produced in 1934 and helped to bring back Schwinn from the precipice of the Great Depression (via Bike History). In the premiere episode of Season 23, Mike Wolfe catches wind of an Aerocycle from a friend named Bobby Green. Although Green doesn’t want to sell, Wolfe is very motivated to buy it, and he and his brother decide to go to Los Angeles in order to convince the reluctant owner.
The Wolfe brothers show up at Green’s 1927 Bowling Alley and get right to work when Green suggests using the Aerocycle as decor. Immediately, Wolfe offers to buy the Aerocycle, and Green offers to sell it for $12,000. In typical “American Pickers” fashion, Mike then attempts to haggle the price and offers $10,000. Green entertains this and suggests that they bowl a single frame. If Green wins, the cost of the bike will be $10,500, and if Wolfe wins, the bike will be $10,000. Green goes first, and Mike calls out his name in the middle of his pitch, which causes him to fumble. Mike then takes his turn and wins, which results in him being able to purchase the bike for $10,000. Mike is overjoyed at this outcome, and throughout the episode, it is apparent that he absolutely adores the Aerocycle.
The scene ends with Robbie Wolfe explaining that it is a win-win situation because Mike not only purchased a pre-war bicycle, but specifically an Aerocycle. One thing is for certain though — Mike does whatever it takes when he gets a vintage bicycle in the cross-hairs.