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Robert Luland
01-23-2010, 05:19 PM
Got an interesting question? There is a fl tranny on Fleese-Bay right now 160396758831. The seller says that itís a 37. Yet it has a date code on it that says #33. As far as I know date coding didnít start until 1938 and double digits until 50. It has an untapped vent boss. The boss didnít show up until 40 and up. If itís 56 and up it wouldnít have a date code of March 53. Any body got a answer. Thing looks to have the reverse idler gear and pin in it. Thanks, Bob L

flat-happy
01-23-2010, 06:08 PM
the date codes changed from letter and number to number and number about 1950 so the code 33 is march 1953. the vented screw for the lid is visible in photo #3 bottom right corner. i think that 51 or 52 was the first year of that---38 had the vent on the cover and no boss on the case. i have a J8 cover with the vent on the cover

Robert Luland
01-23-2010, 06:54 PM
Flat 1953 still had a vent on the tranny. I'm not saying that this isn't a 56 and up tranny. What I don't understand is the date code. If it was 63 it would say 63. Bob L

flat-happy
01-23-2010, 07:14 PM
a 33 date code could be either 53 or 63. the way you would tell the difference is where the vent is. 53 had a hex head vent on the case and 63 would have the tall headed vented screw holding the lid on at about the second screw back on the kicker side of the case. would it help if i posted pictures? i have both but would have to take pictures to post

Robert Luland
01-23-2010, 07:30 PM
Flat I disagree. As far as I know and I can back this up tomorrow. 1960 and up has the full year. It says #?-60. I'm quit aware of the years and the differances. Now the date code? Bob L

flat-happy
01-23-2010, 08:16 PM
the trans in my 59 is date coded 11 58 and i have a trans case date coded
11 3 with no vent on the case. i think 58 was the first year of the two digit year code but no letters in the 50's. the trans we were originally talking about on ebay has a boss on the case looks like to me. it also has the vented screw laying there. i think a 33 code would be march 1953. of course there is no picture of it and the guy might not have read it right either

Robert Luland
01-23-2010, 08:36 PM
Flat the vent screw wasn't used until 56 and up. Are we missing something here?

flat-happy
01-23-2010, 09:25 PM
not sure man--what is the part number for the vent screw? i can't seem to find that 113 date code case but i don't remember using it

Robert Luland
01-23-2010, 09:49 PM
The screw is #34720-56

Chris Haynes
01-24-2010, 01:42 AM
a 33 date code could be either 53 or 63. the way you would tell the difference is where the vent is. 53 had a hex head vent on the case and 63 would have the tall headed vented screw holding the lid on at about the second screw back on the kicker side of the case. would it help if i posted pictures? i have both but would have to take pictures to post

You are incorrect on that. All the date codes changed completely during the mid '50's. Nothing makes sence. Bruce is researching original bikes trying to decipher the strange codes.
Any information from anyone with an unmolested '50's machines would be appreciated.

DaveSwanson
01-24-2010, 08:56 AM
Here are a couple shots from my original 56 FLH

http://i233.photobucket.com/albums/ee165/dswansbiker/DSCN0845.jpg

http://i233.photobucket.com/albums/ee165/dswansbiker/DSCN0841.jpg

DaveSwanson
01-24-2010, 09:03 AM
There were allot of tranny castings made with the 33 date code.

Jerry Wieland
01-24-2010, 09:18 AM
That is a 1956 and up tranny. I do not know why but that 3 3 date code seems to be on all tranny's from mid 1953 to at least some 1956's. Now I know that those years are low production but that still translates in to thousands of transmission cases lying around for a few years.

Jerry

Robert Luland
01-24-2010, 12:16 PM
Thanks Jerry. Hereís a pic of my 1960 for the record. My 57 has a later case on it and for the longest time Iíve searched for a 57. I never found one. Could it be that this 33 code ran though the 1957 year and ended with introduction of the swing arm frame? Does anyone have a pic of a 1958. Bob L
http://i952.photobucket.com/albums/ae1/RobertLuland/IM001343.jpg

flat-happy
01-24-2010, 12:54 PM
this is the trans from my 59---i believe it's oct 58. the frame is dated A9

http://i833.photobucket.com/albums/zz256/flat-happy/131_4278.jpg

http://i833.photobucket.com/albums/zz256/flat-happy/131_4281.jpg

Robert Luland
01-24-2010, 01:59 PM
Good deal! Now were cooking with gas!

Perry Ruiter
01-25-2010, 04:52 PM
Real honest to goodness 37 tranny cases have a slot cast in underneath the mainshaft bearing to allow oil to move between the kicker cover area and the tranny case (see attached photo, sorry I don't have a better one, maybe someone will have a 37 case they can photo). This was eliminated for 38 and replaced by a round hole over by the kicker stop. This moved it away from the fill plug and raised it up slightly to keep swill from moving between cover and case. Ever wonder why the bearing retaining plate has a nice notch in the bottom? It was for this slot ... Perry

flat-happy
01-25-2010, 08:59 PM
in post #15 i meant NOV 58

Robert Luland
03-10-2010, 03:29 PM
Another one for the record. 1959

oddmystic
03-20-2010, 01:52 AM
So what year tranny would this be?

Robert Luland
03-20-2010, 07:15 AM
Looks like a 59 with the 5 gouged out. If it was 39 or 49 the month would be a letter.

VPH-D
03-20-2010, 09:29 AM
My wife's 57 has a 3-3 date code, as does a friend's late 56.
VPH-D

Robert Luland
03-20-2010, 09:48 AM
My wife's 57 has a 3-3 date code, as does a friend's late 56.
VPH-D

As I stated earlier on this thread. I searched for a long time for a 57 numbered case and now I know why I never found one. Bob L

oddmystic
03-20-2010, 10:42 AM
Thats what I was thinking after reading this thread.
Thx for the reply.


Looks like a 59 with the 5 gouged out. If it was 39 or 49 the month would be a letter.

Speeding Big Twin
03-21-2010, 07:20 AM
Gíday everyone, I recently joined the AMCA and this is my first post.

oddmystic, I think your transmission date code indicates November 1959 but I donít think it ever contained the number 5. Iíve posted two 1959 crankcase date codes below and neither of them contain the number 5. And I've also posted yours for comparison:

http://i679.photobucket.com/albums/vv159/Eric_Mileage/November1959.jpg?t=1269167338 http://i679.photobucket.com/albums/vv159/Eric_Mileage/October1959.jpg?t=1269168579

http://i679.photobucket.com/albums/vv159/Eric_Mileage/BTtranscase.jpg?t=1269168638

So far, November and October are the only two months in 1959 where I have run across a single number to indicate the year. Eric

Robert Luland
03-21-2010, 11:44 AM
Two totally different ball games.

Speeding Big Twin
03-22-2010, 12:17 PM
G'day Robert, I've been trying to accumulate some info on casting date codes and casting numbers. Could you elaborate on your comment about two totally different ball games for me please. Thank you. Eric

Robert Luland
03-22-2010, 12:33 PM
1958 and up tranny cases use a number for the month and a full year instead of one letter and one diget. Your comparing them to motor cases. Not done the same at that point in time. Bob L

Ohio-Rider
03-23-2010, 10:53 AM
Hi Eric, Welcome to the club. Your input will be greatly appreciated here.
-Steve

Speeding Big Twin
03-26-2010, 12:41 PM
Bob, thanks for your reply. As I mentioned earlier, Iím accumulating casting info and was wondering if you had any photos showing date codes of 11 59 and/or 10 59 on Big Twin trans cases so I could add to my collection.

Also, I realise the photo below is not a good one but whatís your opinion on the date code? Eric

http://i679.photobucket.com/albums/vv159/Eric_Mileage/BTtransFHGH.jpg?t=1269620544

Speeding Big Twin
03-26-2010, 12:44 PM
G'day, Steve. And thanks for the welcome. As you know, Iím always interested in threads regarding the identification of Harley parts. Eric

flat-happy
03-26-2010, 02:13 PM
if you look at the pics posted on page 2 of this thread by me and others i'd say we have proof here that the year code was done as a single digit and a double digit in at least 58 59 and 60. they were humans making these castings and probably not told how to do their job so they did as they pleased within reason

Speeding Big Twin
03-29-2010, 06:34 AM
flat-happy, regarding the three years you mentioned, examples I have so far indicate two characters were used for the year on BT trans cases in 58, 59 and 60. And also one character used for the year in 59. But I'm still trying to fill in the gaps and I wonder if two different formats were sometimes used at the same time on BT trans cases.

Also, it seems the Big Twin trans date code used two characters for the year as early as February 1958 (2 58). Eric