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Thread: Help ID'ing some bikes.

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Help ID'ing some bikes.

    These bike pictures come from the Vermont State Police Archives.

    In 1937, before there were VSP, the VT DMV had motorcycle riders. They are believed to have been 1937 Indians. Bought by individual officers, not the state. Officers would be reimbursed, as was common practice at the time. There was no specific livery that we knew of... probably ordered in... black and white? Green and Yellow? Any clues? The photos look like standard late '30s Indian two-tone paint schemes. But???

    The close-up picture is DMV officer James Malloy. The others are unknown.

    Ok guys... what do these pictures tell you? Chiefs? Sport Scouts? Years? Details? One has a pretty cool speedomoter indicating it is earlier than 1937/8? Didn't they have integral speedos by '37? Thanks and the VSP archive thanks you... and I thank you. I am debating doing the paint on my '38 Chief in the Vermont State DMV color pattern. There is not a single VSP/VTDMV MC in existance... but someone claims to have found parts of one in a barn. Unverified.







    Any help much appreciated... Love the last pictures. Kids love motorcycles just as much in 1937 as today. And I'd give the DMV officer a ticket for a bald tire. But... 1937 in VT was really bad Depression still. Noone had money for tires, did they?

    Cheers,

    Sirhr

  2. #2
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    Sihr, they're 37 Chiefs.
    The speedo's were as shown (exposed) thru 37.
    According to Sucher in Iron Redskin, new in 38 were the speedo in the aluminum nacalle, and pinstriping of the fenders and tanks. Not sure how much further the pinstriping went.

    qu: " One has a pretty cool speedomoter " ... sihr, where, what? I missed it. Did you post more than 3 pix?

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Thumbs up

    Love that last photo - to cool! thanks for posting.

  4. #4
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    I'd hazard a guess that the bike in the first photo may be a circa 1927 Chief. Whaddya think Phil?
    Cory Othen
    Membership#10953

  5. #5
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    I'd say the first picture is of a 28 Chief. Note front wheel brake (mid 28 introduction) and the small headlight, 28 only.

    Gene

  6. #6
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    It looks like I missed a few details. Thanks for the clarification Gene.
    Cory Othen
    Membership#10953

  7. #7
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    Have you tried asking Doug Frederick at the National Police Motorcycle Museum in NH? He has plenty of contacts in your area, and a great museum too.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by c.o. View Post
    I'd hazard a guess that the bike in the first photo may be a circa 1927 Chief. Whaddya think Phil?
    Cory and Gene, yeah 28, but I have to say that my pic is so dark it almost hurts to look at it, straining so hard. But yeah, the fenders are late 20-ish, not late 30-ish. .. small headlight, ah-so! .. we been schooled, Cory.
    Now, did you guys get more than 3 pix?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by fillibuster View Post
    Cory and Gene, yeah 28, but I have to say that my pic is so dark it almost hurts to look at it, straining so hard. But yeah, the fenders are late 20-ish, not late 30-ish. .. small headlight, ah-so! .. we been schooled, Cory.
    Now, did you guys get more than 3 pix?
    and the really flat heads! Remove-able heads started in 27, correct? C'mon, bust me!
    ..actually, I think Sirh set us up, suggested 37's. I'll never trust him again!

  10. #10
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    First... there are only 3 pictures, not 4. The speedometer was on the close-up... and it's not especially cool (I have the same setup on my JD and my DL)... but it's interesting for being on such a late bike.

    The '37 ID's came from the VSP archive which I have been helping. And that one picture is so dark that other than the color of the bike (clearly not two-tone paintjob) I could not tell much. Give me a minute and I'll try and wash that photo through some software...

    Noone set up... I'm as clueless on any of these early Indians as anyone. New to the Iron Redskin, remember?

    Cheers,

    Sirhr

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