1959 pan shifter

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1959 pan shifter


Post by jdc222 » Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:02 pm

Post by jdc222 on Mar 9, 2004, 12:44am

I'm interested in buying a 59 pan and am sniffing around a few now. One guy is telling me that his 59 FL came stock with a jockey shifter and not a tank shift, and I'd never heard of this. (I thought tank or foot) Any thoughts? Also, and input as to what to look for in a 59 and the good, the bad and the ugly would be great.


Post by dirtydistrict on Mar 9, 2004, 1:44pm

Hi and congratulations for your choice; I NEVER heard about oem jockey shifter on a 59; either tank or foot shift; beware of that guy; he could also state that pigs fly...well they do but under particular conditions ;D

Post by DuoDave on Mar 9, 2004, 11:26pm

I think the factory only ever offered tank or foot shift.
Ugly? The only ugly thing you will find on my 59 Pan is me! ;D

Post by jdc222 on Mar 10, 2004, 12:23am

thanks guys...exactly as I thought about the shifter. Now if anyone knows of a 59 around for sale, lmk...I'd still like to hear from you owners out there on what to look for and/or worry about with this model year.



Post by DuoDave on Mar 10, 2004, 11:01am

I can't think of any particular problems specific to the 59 bikes. Just listen for knocks, rattles and clunks and check out the stuff you would on any bike. If it is still wearing original cylinder heads, they may be cracked, but you probably won't be able to tell unless you pull the heads off and clean them up. If you are looking for originality, go to the book section on this site and check out Greg Fields two Panhead books and Bruce Palmers "How to Restore" book. They will give you the lowdown on what each model year should and should not have. Good luck with your search.

Post by Cotten on Mar 11, 2004, 2:44am

Believe it or not, I DO know where there is a low-mileage (restored by myself a decade ago) '59 that is negotiable.

If you are damn serious about a solid machine, post me direct.

Post by Weez on Mar 25, 2004, 7:53am

There's nothing BAD, plenty GOOD, And never anything ugly with a PANEAD! (cepting when your coming home on one of those wild nites you'll have riding this Particular mode of Transportation. You have chosen the BEsT!)

Post by VintageTwin on Mar 25, 2004, 5:30pm

'59 is the last year of the bucket headlight. '58 was the year the Panhead motor was perfected, with a wider bearing surface on the pinion gear. After '59 Harley got caught up in trying to style the machine to keep up with the modern competition. Nacelled headlight. External oiler to the top end. Dual-points, etc. Just alot of add-ons..nothing "real" internally improved. Buy the '59 and an armload of service and parts manuals. This Big Twin Harley thing is a vision-quest. Rosicrucian or monk almost, in that the subject needs years of study, (some remedies [some now outdated] on the Knuckle and Pans you have to find in one of their Shop Dope revision books) and from study comes self-enlightenment about why the Big Twin was designed exactly as was evolved up to 1958, without out ever factoring in the miracle that the two families got along for so many generations. The more you read and study, the more things fall into place. There are several hidden designs within Harley-Davidson that were never published. One, is the bridge designed at the rear of the horseshoe oil tank so that the battery can sit level for filling. Never published. Never advertised. Other facts, like the reason past designs were carried over to future models. In general, a 28 yr. span from Knuckle to '64, with the goal of reducing the amount of parts within a machine design, up to 1959. The end of a long era. Some parts like the the handlebar grip rollers have been in use since 1910. The seat post plunger link bushing since 1913. And God does ride a Harley. My own testing has revealed that on sleepy-town Sunday mornings, while mounted and preparing to leave our place, the machine will lower itself on the rear shocks about two ounces. Has as much effect as a lawn chair on an ocean liner. God likes east county with the sun in his face, as much as anywhere.
It's nice that it's possible to build any year Knuckle or Pan you like. It took at least 10 years to get here.

Post by jdc on Mar 25, 2004, 8:04pm

thanks for the info...my deal fell through so I am still on the hunt for that elusive '59. I have got the manuals and books and am armed with your info and others that have been helpful, so hopefully I will score in the near future. Thanks


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