A very rare 1911 Harley Davidson in remarkably good condition and original. The only items replaced are considered normal maintenance items like the drive belt and the rubber.
The 1911 Harley Davidson was like most if not all motor cycles at that time, very basic mechanically with a frame based on a bicycle. But hey I am not knocking the early developers of the motor cycle as this was all they had to work with and learn as you go. At that time America had a multitude of motor cycle manufacturers and competition between them saw the men sorted out from the boys, with the big three being Harley Davidson, Hendersonand Indian. Competition between then was not always friendly either, as history shows Indian in particular being the ‘nasty party’ towards Harley Davidson in the earlier days. Car manufacturers were the same and constantly struggled to implement new ideas often while competitors did their best to discredit them.
I recently bought the DVD’s “Harley and the Davidsons”. If you haven’t watched it it is well worth doing so, is one of these stories you can watch again and again and not get bored with it. As the story shows the Davidson brothers Walter and Arthur were hard and determined men, while their friend Bill Harley was a great engineer and problem solver. My favourite part is where Edsel Ford negotiates a deal with HD to manufacture a trike with a Ford badge on it, then sets about striving to send HD broke so Ford could take over the company for a fraction of its worth. Seeing Walter tell Edsel what he could do with their deal is priceless. Trikes did become a boost to HD, being manufactured right through to today’s model.
Below this is another video, goes for about 5 minutes, that looks very closely at a remarkably original 1918 Harley Davidson . This shows the progress made in motor cycle development in a short period of time. Racing was a big attraction and must have helped no end to research and development, and I dare say the statement “win on Sunday sell on Monday” would have applied then the same as always.
Plenty of close up film showing the bike, plus a road run
Thanks to Bob Laidlaw for sharing his 1911 Harley Davidson, photos are video screen shots.
1918 Harley Davidson Twin
Here is a 1918 Harley Davidson Twin also with a lot of close up photos showing development compared to the above video on the 1911 Harley Davidson. Add just a few short years to see more development, and now some of the latest on todays market.
Special thanks to the owner Buzz Canter. Great bike, just the way it is, pleased you intend to keep it that way.