harley offside

harley offside
1949 Harley civilian
1959 G
harley engine offside
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:55 am

harley offside

Sat Aug 05, 2017 2:38 pm

Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:55 am
Bikes: 1949 Harley WL 45
Location: Poole UK

by keithlawes » Sat Aug 05, 2017 2:51 pm

Hi Guys,

I live in the UK and am new to Harley ownership. Acquired this WL flathead recently, imported from Egypt of all places.
As you can imagine these are pretty rare here, in particular the civilian version.
Have done a fair bit of research before purchase and it does seem to me to be reasonably original, with the normal bodges and replacements from nearly 70 years of wear and tear. E.g. pattern (SSS) tombstone rear light. See next 3 photos as well.
We've dated it to 1949 from the frame die markings. This seems to match the bike's appearance.
Have a lot of questions, but a few to start:-
It has a hand clutch. This seems to be factory fitted with Harley OEM levers. The parts book I've acquired seems to indicate that this was an option. Is that correct?
It has a km/hr speedo that looks original. Is that likely to be original? It is again listed as an option.
It has a reverse gear which seems to be a common option. Is that standard on a solo or does it indicate it was a sidecar bike?
The buddy seat is very old. Could it have been factory fitted?
Oil tank is very crusty inside. Have spent a lot of time de-rusting the inside and washing out and its now fairly clean. Is rust debris from the oil a common problem and potential motor wrecker??

The engine number is definitely wrong. 43WL0xxx, i.e. a civilian 1943 number which as I understand it is impossible. However the number stamp is definitely onto a virgin casing, the convex raised area with the number on it has not been flattened to erase a previous number. Any ideas? War surplus engine fitted as a replacement by a dealer who then stamped it himself???

Question questions questions!!! All wisdom gratefully received.

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