Hydra-Glide development

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Re: Hydra-Glide development


Post by Raytag »


Mr Bensons and Mr Stevens` design differ big time.
The fork of Mr Benson counts 37 (!) parts ... for each leg ... and those parts need to be purchased, machined and assembled. Expensive and extensive. No good for mass production. My .02
So I`m with you that Mr Bensons fork hasn`t much input on the final Hydra Glide.

Kinda teasing that you have pics of unknown trial shots with an unidentified fork ... LOL


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Re: Hydra-Glide development


Post by Speeding Big Twin »

RooDog wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:35 pm
Let us not forget that Palmer's book many pre-production, prototype, concept photographs which contain many, many details that never made it into that year's production models.

I haven’t forgotten. But it depends on what is being discussed.

In this instance if your statement was taken to its logical conclusion then it would be like suggesting the Glide fork may not have made it into 1949 production. But it did, as did the spring fork, and at the beginning of the season.

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Re: Hydra-Glide development


Post by RooDog »

My comment is directed to the general readers of this site, who all too often do not have Harley Factory Service and Parts manuals, let alone, Palmer's books.

All I am suggesting is that the reproduced Factory photographs in Palmer's are not production bikes. Any other inference is your own.
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Re: Hydra-Glide development


Post by badger34 »

I don't normally like to do this but, I'll indulge the "factory booty" post made by Frankenstein. No doubt many items were "sprung" by employees and looted from the old fabled reject/scrap pile at the west end of the factory property. Herb Wagner opens his 1930-41 Revolutionary Motorcycles book with a story of the scrap pile. I'm sure many of the small items I have from my G'pa Joe were factory booty. I've talked with several ex-employees who worked with my G'pa and from just about every one of them I've heard of unique items they have that no doubt were liberated from the motor company. I know of a couple "now complete" engines, carbs, speedos, tank badges & fender medallions and even early internal factory literature that was salvaged from dumpsters when AMF cleaned house. As for my G'pa I feel he probably took liberty when test cycles were scrapped and saved some small items.

One man now retired from the Racing Dept told me he could recall my G'pa while at work making small parts for and repairing random household items & toys test riders would pickup at garage & yard sales while out daily testing. I know this is true because I can remember G'pa repairing a slot machine for one long time test rider. On my desk I have some small nut, bolt & screw animal figures that G'pa brazed together for my sister and I during lunch breaks from loose hardware he'd pick up off the floor. Another Racing Dept retiree sent me a knife my G'pa had handmade and given to him, it was still in his tool box now stored idle in his garage. He recalled my G'pa lending him a hand in learning to run an old lathe they had to work with in experimental just after he had been newly hired.

So there are many new discoveries and stories still out there, and much long lost by the MoCo who's unaware it exists today. I've been very fortunate in that everyone I have contacted all were very kind and more than happy to share their recollections with me.

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