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Thread: Jay Leno 1930 indian chief

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
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    100

    Default Jay Leno 1930 indian chief

    Guys i know most of you have prolly seen the you tube video on what Jay L calls his junk rider 30 indian chief. I have 2 questions, 1 what do you think a ballpark figure of what its worth and 2 what he spent on having it put back together? Even though i love my 73 xlch, man ide be a happy camper to have that 30 chief....I noticed when he pulled in the gate closed behind him. So he has security as i would too if i had his $$$$. Would love to go to his museum...thanx brett

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Sarasota, Florida
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    4,180

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    That bike is the second to last year for the Big Chief (1931 being the last year). Indian didn't call it the Big Chief by that time, but it's lineage is direct to 1922. All Big Chiefs from '22-'31 are quite rare and the last few years are probably the most scare because of the depression, which started in 1929. I think they are rare today because they were ridden into the ground because they were well built, and when they stopped running in the late '40s, and early '50s, their owner's threw in the towel. Indian also had massive internal problems in 1929 with crooks on the BOD, but fortunately, E. Paul Dupont was soon to take over and carry Indian through the depression, and into their golden age, making some of the most beautiful motorcycles ever made. The last of the Big Chiefs are very interesting bikes and have that most unique feature of cast aluminum gas/oil tanks. I personally prefer the pre-1925 Big Chiefs because they look leaner, and I just like the tank-in-frame look. I love Harley-Davidsons made before 1925, as much as I like pre-'25 Indians but I know that Indian made a better motorcycle than H-D in those years. Indian went to a side valve motor in 1916, and they had a helical gear primary drive that would outlast anything made today. Indian also went to a twin down-tube frame that was far stronger, and more stable than anything being built by any motorcycle manufacturer. I have a 1916 H-D, and I had a 1924 Indian Big Chief and I love both bikes equally. . . . But, I think I loved the Big Chief more
    Eric Smith
    AMCA #886

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    216

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    Thanks for the explanation Eric, you've got a lot of great knowledge about these early Indians, thanks for sharing.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
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    100

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    Thanx for info Eric....I guess its kind of hard to put a value on what he spent..It is a nice rider, i love the looks of that era indian...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    480

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    Although an excellent explanation by Eric, i wouldn't want to detour anyone from achieving their dream or goal, especially when it comes to buying the Motorcycle of choice. But, in my opinion, a 1930 thru 1933 VL series is a lot easier, with the basic same results, compared to finding an early 30's Indian. If you're patient Brett, great deals show-up from basket to restored & everything in-between.

    https://youtu.be/jFoZJNSZwJo >>>Jay Leno 1930 Indian Chief.

    https://youtu.be/WtJhQa-FduM >>>1930 VL
    https://youtu.be/l3kOWZbTVKI >>>1932 VL
    https://youtu.be/dJchSuMBYv0 >>>1933 VL

    *M.A.D.*
    Last edited by JoJo357; 02-08-2019 at 01:05 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Ct.
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    71

    Default

    Having a 36 VLD, I would wholeheartedly agree with JoJo but include all of the Vl years....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
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    480

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    Quote Originally Posted by HDSmitty View Post
    Having a 36 VLD, I would wholeheartedly agree with JoJo but include all of the Vl years....
    I agree Smitty, but i was going for the look of the 1930-34 Chiefs, which is similar to the 1930-33 V years. Any year in that series are Knocked-outta' the park! And...if you're really interested Brett, check out AMCA member/author, Steve Slocombe--'The Harley-Davidson VL Years'. A fantastic series of books!
    img0877-1541096382557.jpg >>Sold for a ridiculously low price at Mecum Auction--1-2019--Las Vegas. $19,800.00
    img0874-1541096380864@2x.jpg >>1931 V

    *M.A.D.*
    Last edited by JoJo357; 02-09-2019 at 03:06 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
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    100

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoJo357 View Post
    I agree Smitty, but i was going for the look of the 1930-34 Chiefs, which is similar to the 1930-33 V years. Any year in that series are Knocked-outta' the park! And...if you're really interested Brett, check out AMCA member/author, Steve Slocombe--'The Harley-Davidson VL Years'. A fantastic series of books!
    img0877-1541096382557.jpg >>Sold for a ridiculously low price at Mecum Auction--1-2019--Las Vegas. $19,800.00
    img0874-1541096380864@2x.jpg >>1931 V

    *M.A.D.*
    Thanx JoJo i will ...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    North Hills, CA and Pine Grove, CA
    Posts
    5,464

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    Jay's complex is two warehouse buildings adjacent to Burbank Airport. His security there is better than Fort Knox.
    Be sure to visit;
    http://www.vintageamericanmotorcycles.com/main.php
    Be sure to register at the site so you can see large images.
    Also be sure to visit http://www.caimag.com/forum/

  10. #10

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    Hi guys 1931 Chief last year for tanks in frame 1932- 1939 frames very similar 50 different changes from 31 to 32 very few interchangable parts. 1931 & back think of it as sitting on the bike 1932 & up think of it as sitting in the bike.

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