March 30, 2009

1924 Harley JD – One Of My “New” Current Projects

Call me nuts for taking on more project bikes than I possibly have time for. Or call me smart and/or lucky for having stashed away several very interesting classic motorcycles as past or future projects.

"Too Red" Dual Carb 1949 Harley Panhead Bobber

"Too Red" Dual Carb 1949 Harley Panhead Bobber

Well, after a long winter, I had set my sights on sorting out and changing some of paint on my Too Red, Dual-Carb 1949 Panhead bobber this Spring. It’s a great bike but I had some issues with one of the two side-by-side Linkert carburetors coming lose, and I wanted to make it a little less red by removing some items (red grips, red kicker pedal red and white spiral cable covers, red oil bag, and possibly the red rims, etc).

1931 Indian 101 Scout With Leaking Tank Out

1931 Indian 101 Scout With Leaking Tank Out

All those plans changed a couple of weeks ago when my 1931 Indian 101 Scout for an early Sunday breakfast run with my pal Dean. It was our first vintage bike ride of the season and my 101 and his Panhead ran great out to Marcus Dairy in Danbury, CT, about a half hour ride out. On the way back the fuel line split on the 101 forcing us to make a roadside repair. I then limped it home. At home I discovered the fuel line had split into two and there was a small leak in the bottom of the gas tank where it appears the solder wore out. So I figured this was my immediate project and the the 1949 Panhead would have to wait.

My 1924 Harley JDCA Motorcycle

Original Paint 1924 Harley JDCA Motorcycle

Then a few days later I somehow got myself into another crazy adventure with vintage motorcycles when I agreed to bring my 1924 Harley JDCA out to Ohio this summer to be part of the AMA’s 85th anniversary celebrations and ride it  in a parade. Sounds simple, except the bike has been in storage for more than five years and I have never ridden this bike more than a couple of miles ever! So guess what’s the immediate priority now in my current projects list? Yep, my 1924 Harley.

After sitting in a local Harley dealer’s showroom for a couple of years, then in a storage place for another couple fo years I was pretty sure it was going to take a lot of work to get it running at all, let along well. Boy was I surprised. Some air in the tires. I charged up the modern battery, gas it some fresh gas and nothing. One shot of starter fluid and she lit up on the third kick. Sounded great but smoked like it was on fire.

Then I remembered I was supposed to drain the sump of oil and give it two strokes of the hand oil pump to get it right. Oh well, I’ll know better next time.

After it warmed up I took it for a short ride up and down the road and was impressed with how well it ran. OK, so now I know it runs well, so it’s time to sort out the rest of the bike so it looks as good and runs as well as it can while staying as correct and original as possible.

Stay tuned as more details and requests for help to follow.

Filed under Buzz Kanter Classic Motorcycle Blog, Restoration by Buzz_Kanter

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