We at American Iron Magazine are planning on redoing this “bitsa bike” old Harley 2 cam as a magazine project bike in the next year.
These photos of the classic Harley are in “as purchased” condition. Not the incorrect front fender, British dual-leading shoe front brake, incorrect headlight and handlebars, home made exhaust, funky saddlebags and more.
The air cleaner is correct, as is the shifter assembly, forks, rear and side stands, and frame.
The genuines old Harley dash has been modified with toggle switches in place of the keys. Center toggle is the ignition switche, the two outside toggles are for lights. The handlbars seem to be modified boardtracker bars.
We like the idea of extra lights in the back of the bike as these classic old Harleys came with a very small tail/brake light. HOWEVER, these old Harley turn signals just look wrong on this vintage Harley. They must come off, but we are considering adding small bullet lights under the seat using the same wiring already on the bike for these lights.
We expect this project to be in the pages of American Iron Magazine sometime late in 2016. In the mean time we are open to suggestions on what and how to re-do this vintage Harley.
July 15, 2012
After a lot of work, I have the bike starting idling and running well now, so it’s time to fine tune and experiment with various ideas on my 1929 Harley JDH. I still have almost a month and a half before we leave from Newburgh, NY for San Francisco on the second Motorcycle Cannonball endurance ride. This year the machines must have been built in 1929 or earlier, so mine will be one of the newest machines on the cross country ride.
Last week I installed a 100 mph Corbin speedometer on the bike and took it out for a ride. The speedometer worked well – once I figured out how to a) install the ring gear properly and centered to the hub, and b) mounted the bracket so the ring gear and drive gear aligned properly.
Today I temporarily taped a portable GPS unit on my handlebars and figured it would be a good way to check the Corbin speedometer’s accuracy.
I found the Corbin was about 10 mph optimistic at speeds over about 20 mph and hard to tell below those speeds. I am hoping the solution is simply to swap out the fiber drive gear at the end of the peedometer cable.
Two weeks ago I drained all the motor oil from the oil tank and from the sump. I replaced it with Amsoil synthetic oil (thanks Amsoil). I was cautious about running synthetic oil in an antique motorcycle but Dale Walksler assured me it would be a good thing to do. I have less than 100 miles of riding in with the synthetic and so far, no issues.
Before my ride today I checked and the transmission fluid was quit low so I figured I’d try the synthetic oil Amsoil was kind enough to send me. I topped it off and rode it to our usual breakfast spot. By the time I finished breakfast there was a sizable oil puddle under the transmission (as you can see in the photo above). I guess synthetic is fine for the engine, but not the transmission.
June 17, 2012
I realize I have been working on my 1929 Harley-Davidson JDH every week to get better prepared for the up-coming Motorcycle Cannonball in September. I have been so busy working on the bike and my job at American Iron Magazine, Motorcycle Bagger and RoadBike that I have not posted anything on this blog in a while. So here is a quick update on my Motorcycle Cannonball Harley Two Cam.
The bike is running well, starting easily and making great power. The brakes are marginal at best but I am learning better how to cope with that. We added an era-correct luggage rack and a set of cheap saddlebags I found on ebay. I have two mirrors and the mounting bracket for the route holder, and installed a fork brace and a rare vintage Hanson roll up windshield.
I have the bike legally registered and insured and I am running a rear 1929 Connecticut license plate. In addition I added one of the two official Motorcycle Cannonball plates and need to figure out how to mount the other on securely.
I took the bike up to the AMCA Rhinebeck NY meet last week and enjoyed riding it around up there until the gas line split and began running raw gas onto the generator. I replaced the steel Y pipe with long rubber gas lines and a plastic T fitting I bought at in the plumbing section of Home Depot for a couple of bucks.
The bike usually starts on the first hot kick and runs well. I replaced the fossil oil in the sump and oil tank with Amsoil synthetic (thanks Amsoil for sponsoring Team American Iron’s Motorcycle Cannonball ride) and feel I might have only some fine tuning to do before the 3,800 mile ride from New York to San Fransisco in September.
If you would like to support Team American Iron we are selling our Support Staff T-shirts for $20.
The art on the front shows my 1929 Harley riding across the US.
The art on the back has my #15 and Team American Iron Support Staff.
To order your shirt(s) please visit http://www.greaserag.com/product_info.php?products_id=238&osCsid=rf6k1s6k2ks9v11jcckni7g7l3