Riding Old Machines

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by Randall K. Wilson, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. Randall K. Wilson

    Randall K. Wilson Junior Member

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    I have always wanted the opportunity to ride the old Harleys...such as the panheads, or even shovelheads, but it has now come to fruition. Just for the mere experience of it, I still hope to someday. Since I got back into riding in 1996 I have bought 4 new machines, all touring models.

    I have heard some folk say that if a person had ridden the Harleys before the invention of the Evolution engine, well they would have a much better appreciation of the machines of today. I suppose because, they would be able to compare it to the issues and ride of the former machines.

    I assume some more experienced folk on the forum can relate to the premis of my second paragraph. Please respond.
     
  2. Fossil

    Fossil Active Member

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    I hope you do get to ride a Pan or Shovel. They were built back in the day long distance riding wasn't the most popular thing to do. When the EVO came out it put Harley on a par with the imports. That is when the Harley's got reborn and went into quality control. Harley still makes the EVO engine and for a fair price will rebuild the EVO, Twin Cam or V Rod. Today is the age of the long distance Harley and the sales has shown it. Fossil
     
  3. Randall K. Wilson

    Randall K. Wilson Junior Member

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    Fossil, thanks. I know a man who lived in Flint Michigan and rode panheads and shovelheads from Flint Michigan straight through to Western Kentucky...many times. Most of these trips during the night as he would leave after he finshed working the afternoon shift.

    In trying to gain some of his experiences in riding these old machines I ask him..."George, what was it like riding them old Harleys back and forth from Michigan to Kentucy and back?" He replied, " Oh Randy, I was so drunk I really don't remember that much about it...":laugh
     
  4. sanec1

    sanec1 Active Member

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    You can see my old shovelhead pics by checking out my profile Randall. It was my first Harley. I bought it as a "project" bike and it stayed that way the whole time I owned it. My first ride home after having it "safetied" was pure joy. The custom paint attracted comments and the distinct exhaust note turned heads. Cops liked it too.

    It was like having a mistress kinda. She needed lots of TLC and cash thrown her way. Loc-tite became my best friend. With an owners manual most work could be done by me. Head gaskets were replaced as punishment for pushing too hard. In other words, expect to do some wrenching.

    The work was worth the reward IMO. I kept the bike for about 10 years. It wasn't as refined as the modern bikes but that was actually its appeal. It was like riding a piece of history. And there was absolutely no chance of me pulling up to the lights and seeing the same bike next to me :s
     
  5. charleyhorse

    charleyhorse Member

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    I rode a 75 FLH shovel I restore to original for ten yrs. And yes you did have to keep working on it to keep it running and use a lot of locktite, but it was worth. You get off after a long ride and shake for a while but that was what we call riding. I once rode it aprox 400 mi in one day and swore I would not do that again. But I did and loved it. I still have it and plan on restoring it again some day.
     
  6. Randall K. Wilson

    Randall K. Wilson Junior Member

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    I visited the Harley Dealership in South-Cleveland Ohio in 1995. On display they had a 1975 FLH which they claim had once belongs to Elvis the Pelvis. Next to it was a enlarged image of the cycles TN BMV title, with Elvis's name on it. I'm assuming it all to be legit. Obviously this machine looked brand new and boy was it lovely. Are you familiar with this cycle?
     
  7. charleyhorse

    charleyhorse Member

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    I'm not familiar with that exact bike other than seeing pics of Elvis on bikes that look like FLH. But I'm sure my bike would look some what like it.
     
  8. murf

    murf Active Member

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    This is a pic of my friend's 1945 WL Solo Sport. Not sure how long ago he got it but it was "all there" and correct. Rides it regularly and it runs great.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. murf

    murf Active Member

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    Sorry, trying to figure out how to add image.
     
  10. glider

    glider Veteran Member

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