Walksler’s Blog

Thoughts from Matt Walksler of the Wheels Before Time Museum

February 23, 2020

Rare Harley DAH Factory Racer at Wheels Through Time Museum

Matt Walksler and crew pull out an ultra-rare Harley DAH factory racer and fire it up in the Wheels Through Time Museum. Check out how they start it by rolling the rear tire over with another old Harley.

The crew at Dale’s Wheels Through Time Museum often fire up other rare and unusual motorcycles. Worth the visit to Maggie Valely, NC.

Filed under Classic Harley History, Competition Motorcycles, Walksler's Blog by Buzz Kanter

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September 9, 2010

Motorcycle Cannonball To Wheels Through Time Museum

Coast-to-Coast “Motorcycle Cannonball” to Stop at WTT this Sunday!

mccannonball.jpgThis coming Sunday, September 12, over 65 men and women from around the globe will visit the Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, NC as part of the first ever Motorcycle Cannonball Run.  Beginning in Kitty Hawk, NC, riders will compete on motorcycles built prior to 1916 in a coast-to-coast endurance race ending in Santa Monica, CA on September 26th.

The Motorcycle Cannonball Run, named after Erwin “Cannonball” Baker — a once-famous motorcycle and automobile racer who set over 140 endurance records from 1910 through the late-1930s — will depart the birthplace of aviation in North Carolina’s Outer Banks on Friday, September 10th, making its way across the great United States on a sixteen-day, 3,300-mile trek to the Pacific Ocean’s west coast in Southern California.  Nearly 70 riders have signed Text Box: Motorcycle Cannonball will depart Kitty Hawk, NC on September 10th, and will arrive in Santa Monica, CA sixteen days later on September 26, 2010.up for the first-year event, in hopes of proving the durability and reliability of their nearly century-old equipment.

The run will cover approximately 200-230 miles per day, travelling mostly back roads and two-lane highways, as many of the machines on the run are over 100 years old and are unable to sustain speeds in excess of 35 or 40 miles per hour.  Riders are scheduled to stop in Greenville, NC and Concord, NC for overnight stops on their way towards Maggie Valley.

Machines will begin descending into Maggie Valley around 3:00 p.m. on Sunday for a special tour of the Wheels Through Time Museum.  Motorcycles competing in the event will be on display for visitors through the early evening, as well as dozens over other antique motorcycles that are accompanying the riders.

DSCF5492.JPGWheels Through Time Museum curator and founder, Dale Walksler, will also be competing in the run aboard his 1915 Harley-Davidson, with teammate Wayne Stanfield of Tustin, CA.  “We’ve done all we can to prepare each machine for the cross-country trek, but realize that its going to be an enormous challenge, regardless of how much effort has gone into getting these machines ready for the road,” said Walksler.

While over 65 riders are competing in the event, it is expected that far fewer will finish. Riders must be aboard machines 95 years and older, which imposes serious threats and limitations, including primitive engine design, lack of spare parts, and out-dated brakes.

“There are very few that have ridden motorcycles for such a long distance,” said Walksler.  “And there are even fewer who’ve done it on a 95 year old machine.  Completing this run will be a true test of endurance, stamina, and grit, but it will also take an experienced hand when it comes Text Box: Wheels Through Time Museum Curator, Dale Walksler, will compete in the Motorcycle Cannonball aboard this original 1915 Harley-Davidson Twin.to the mechanics of a motorcycle this old!”

Wheels Through Time is open Thursday-Monday, from 9a.m.-5p.m. and will be holding demonstrations of many almost century-old motorcycles and automobiles throughout the weekend.  The welcome ceremony for Cannonball Riders will be held at approximately 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, with museum hours extended until 7:00 p.m.

For more information on Sunday’s Motorcycle Cannonball Run arrival, visit the museum’s website, located at www.WheelsThroughTime.com or call (828) 926-6266.

Filed under Cannonball Motorcycle Diaries, Events, Walksler's Blog by

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April 7, 2009

Dale Walksler Sets ECTA Vintage Motorcycle Records

This past weekend, the Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, NC, traveled to Maxton, NC for the East Coast Timing Association (ECTA) Land Speed Races to compete in the first east coast speed trials event of the 2009 season.

The team, consisting of members from North Carolina, Michigan, and Indiana had unbelievable success over the weekend, coming away with 5 new ECTA-certified land speed records.


Geared To Go! This purpose-built 1930 Harley DLD racer before its first run.

During this first run of the year, hundreds of racers and spectators gathered for the two-day event, and were met with blue skies and perfect temperatures for land speed racing.

Competitors from near and far brought their best cars, trucks and motorcycles, fielding new and old machines alike, in order to take a chance at making history.

Each machine fielded by the Wheels Through Time race team exceeded 60 years of age. And all of them would compete in various vintage classes for their respective records.  In total, the team fielded five vintage machines for the speed trials, including the oldest machine to ever run at an ECTA event — a 1930 Harley-Davidson 750cc Model D (sorry Buzz, we know you previously held that with your 1931 V).  Prepared and ridden by museum curator and founder, Dale Walksler, the little Harley-Davidson needed to clock at least 85 miles per hour in order to break the record in the Altered Vintage Production Gas class.

“We came here with high hopes,” said Walksler before his first record attempt.  “The machine was purpose built to run at Maxton, and we’ve done all we can to make sure the 750 [c.c.] Harley is competitive.

Walksler’s first run on the machine came after a two hour starting delay due to More on Dale Walksler Sets ECTA Vintage Motorcycle Records

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