How To Read A BMX Serial Number Chart

All bikes come with a unique serial number that identifies them when purchasing a spare part or if stolen. The chart sequence differs according to the brand of your bike. This unique chart that comprises numbers and letters is often stamped on the frame, specifically at the bottom bracket or head tube. Knowing how to use the chart is vital as it might help you value your bike or even identify it if stolen.

What Is The Importance Of A BMX Serial Number Chart?

 BMX Serial Number Chart

Your BMX’s serial chart is of great importance. All bikers understand that theft of cycles is actual. If your bike is stolen and you have a tracking device on it, the serial chart helps you identify it if recovered. Alternatively, you may require selling or buying a BMX bike; if you don’t know its value, the chart helps you identify its model and year of manufacture. Equipped with this information, it becomes easy to value the cycle.

Suppose you are new to biking and don’t know how to use a BMX’s serial chart; this article is meant to guide you in reading, interpreting, and making good use of the information. Since there are several brands of BMX, we have chosen to base our guide on the HARO BMX bikes’ serial chart.

A Guide To Understanding A BMX Serial Number Chart

Before figuring out how to use the chat, it would help to understand how to decipher the code. The numbering style has changed severally from the 1980s to date. Let’s analyze how these bikes are serialized:

1. How BMX Serials Appeared In The 1980s

During the 1980s, BMX serial numbers were simple to decipher as they were in simple digits denoting the year of manufacture. The model information wasn’t captured in the serial number. For instance, if your bike’s production date is 1985, it came with the digit 85. 

This serializing trend continued until 1987 before adopting a new way of serialization. Therefore, during their time, bikes produced were stamped with simple digits denoting their year of manufacture. The digits 86 and 87 indicate that they were built in 1986 and 1987, respectively. The 1988 models of Hero BMX bikes were stamped with H88. 

For instance, if the BMX’s production date is August 1988, the serial number appears H8808XXX. In this example, H stands for the HARO model, 88 for the year of production, which is 1988, and 08 for August. The serial number, H89071071, is stamped in a 1990 model produced in July 1989.

2. HARO BMX Serial Numbers For 1990 To 1999

The serialization system changed much in the year 1990. The serial alternated the month of production with a letter that replaced the figure. For instance, if your bike’s month of production is 1991 August, the serial will be A91H. The letter H is the eighth in alphabetical order, thus denoting August.

The following chart illustrates how months are represented by alphabetical letters:


There is another serialization variation used during this period. For instance, HARO Group 1 ci BMX bikes frames made in 1994 August could bear CI48138 as its serial number. Though the numbering system is slightly different, the build year (1994) is represented by the number 4 that comes immediately after the (CI), which denotes the model.

3. Serialization Of HARO BMX Bikes Between 2000 And 2009

Although the company made slight altercations to the numbering system between 2000 and 2009, they maintained the basic serialization structure. 

However, they increased the digits that come before the serial number due to the number of frame models. Despite these changes, the year and month of production retained their place in the serial chart. For instance, if you come across a bike stamped with BPG0K0663, it means that its production date is November 2000. While K denotes 8, the year 2000 is represented by the 0 before K. Likewise, using the same deciphering method, a June 2002 bike is serialized by MPS2F12908. In this case, 2 represents the year, while F represents the month.

Why Do HARO Frames Have Different Build Date And Model Date?

Have you ever asked yourself why HARO frames have a different production date from the model date? This is one question that we are asked often. The answer is straightforward. Frames were built a year earlier before being released to the market. Hence, if the frame’s build date is 2002, it features in the 2003 model of the HARO catalog, meaning it boasts the 2003 parts and decal set.

Benefits Of Knowing Your Bike’s Serial Number Chart

It is estimated that 80% of bike owners don’t know their cycles’ serial number chart. Their ignorance is laid bare when a situation arises that requires the use of the number. Here are some of the benefits associated with a bike’s serial number chart;

1. Identification

Your bike’s serial number chart is most significant. Suppose it is stolen and recovered; you have to prove ownership by producing a serial number to the authorities.

There are so many similar bikes in the streets that it becomes hard to identify yours by looking at them. However, if you know its serial number, identification becomes more manageable.

2. Tracking Down Lost Bike

In an unlucky incident where your bike is stolen, you will track it down using the serial number. Suppose the bike is taken to the market for reselling after the theft. In that case, you can stop the resale by notifying the public that it is stolen property via publishing its serial number.

3. Bike Registration

The bike’s serial number is used to register your investment for proof of ownership and make tracking it down easy if stolen. 


Where Do I Find My Bike’s Serial Number Chart?

Your bike’s serial number is stamped in the following places:

1. Bottom bracket.

2. Crank’s underside.

3. Headset.

4. Rear stays.

5. The downtube.

6. Top of the crank.

Bottom Line

Knowing how to read your bike’s serial number chart and using it is crucial. It comes in handy during dire situations such as theft. If you are unsure how to decipher and use the code, carefully follow the guidelines on this page, and you are sorted.

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