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lucky1201
12-04-2006, 11:14 PM
hey everyone, i've been interested in vintage bikes since i was a kid but now i am actually trying to get more involved in it now. so basically i was wondering if you guys have any advice/suggestions for me getting this knowledge and skill to actually restore these bikes. i've been reading books and now want to start working on them. thanks in advance

Jack_Hester
12-05-2006, 08:54 AM
Lucky -

Pick a project that's not too old, where parts are still fairly available, as your first. The build will be a great learning experience, and will go together in a reasonable amount of time. And, not meaning to step on any toes, don't worry if it's not 100% correct, the first time out. Don't modify anything. But, if it's not complete, make it a rolling restoration. A bobber, or something like it. That way, you can be riding and searching for the rest. I have a '59 FLH that is only about 75% correct, bad paint (incorrect, as well), and some H-D parts that are later. Truck taillights bolted to the upper shock studs, for more visibility from the rear. But, it appears stock to the untrained eye. And, draws way more attention than any of the new stuff. It is a rolling restoration that I've had since I bought it in 1974. All the rest of my old bikes are in pieces, in some form of build (or lack of). They will come together in whatever form it takes to get them on the road. Stripped down, if need be, to start riding them. But, totally stock, when finished. For some strange reason, I left the '59 together and in running condition. I went through a phase of disassembly on the others, thinking that it would make storage easier. Finding all the parts that I have, is now the problem.

Enjoy the build and the hunt through many great swapmeets. Be careful. It's more addictive than you realize.

Jack

c.o.
12-05-2006, 09:57 AM
What Jack said :D Please heed the warning about addiction!!! Once the need for old motorcycles and parts starts flowing through your veins, your a goner :D

Johnny
12-06-2006, 08:40 AM
Lucky,
Listen to Jack......he knows what he's talking about.
The fact that you are a member of the AMCA and joined this forum is great. If you do not have a copy of Bruce Palmer's "How to restore your Harley-Davidson", it is a great reference source whether you are restoring an H-D or something else.
As Jack mentioned, start with something where parts are readily available. If you like OHV big twins, shovelheads are still affordable and original parts are not too difficult to find. If you are looking for something older, the WL model 45's are also reasonably priced and parts available, some original, the rest reproduction.
Oh, and about the addiction part........there is a 12 step program available. ;)

Jack_Hester
12-06-2006, 11:07 AM
Johnny is so right about the WL's. I have a passion for these little Flatheads. Plenty of original and quality aftermarket parts. If you are building a rider, it doesn't matter whether the parts are all original. But, the fact that there are plenty of NOS original parts still available is a plus, for those who want originality. I have a number of these on hand, waiting their turn for whatever I decide to do with them. None complete. I'm planning at least one Flathead 45 Cub Cadet. And, a 45 racer. And, a WLA. And, who knows what else.

Jack

Ohio-Rider
12-06-2006, 11:37 AM
I don't meen to highjack this thread but I see you guys discussing 45WL's. Could you take a look at my post under the flathead section? Thanks

lucky1201
12-06-2006, 06:49 PM
THANKS AGAIN YOU GUYS....I DO HAVE A VAST SELECTION OF LITERATURE AND THAT'S STILL GROWING.....I JUST BOUGHT 2 SPRINTS THAT ARE RIDEABLE AND I PLAN I GETTING THOSE PRETTY STOCK. THEN I HAVE A FEW HUMMERS TO WORK ON....SO HOPEFULLY THEY WILL WORK/LOOK GOOD. THANKS AGAIN.

Paquette
12-13-2006, 11:15 AM
Be sure to check out harleyhummerclub.org lots of great folks and advise----