1953 Panhead assistance please

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Buddhahoodvatoloco
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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#16

Post by Buddhahoodvatoloco » Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:41 pm

Pete, that is a good reatil price, but your objective is exactly what??
Pete808 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:08 pm
Doc37W wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:21 pm
Pete, The cam cover is correct for '53-'54. In '55 & up, H-D filled in the upper left corner of the cam cover in order to cover the case that was exposed (like it is on this engine). Depending on the price, I would buy it & replace the repop parts as they came available and as I could afford it. Doc
I am waiting on the price. I know that he paid $21500 for it plus shipping and he put new tires on it so he is probably in it around $23k, and will probably want that plus a $1000 or so.



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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#17

Post by Pete808 » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:37 pm

Buddhahoodvatoloco wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:41 pm
Pete, that is a good reatil price, but your objective is exactly what??
Pete808 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:08 pm
Doc37W wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:21 pm
Pete, The cam cover is correct for '53-'54. In '55 & up, H-D filled in the upper left corner of the cam cover in order to cover the case that was exposed (like it is on this engine). Depending on the price, I would buy it & replace the repop parts as they came available and as I could afford it. Doc
I am waiting on the price. I know that he paid $21500 for it plus shipping and he put new tires on it so he is probably in it around $23k, and will probably want that plus a $1000 or so.
Just want to make sure that my friend is getting what he pays for. Since it is in the higher price range, I just want to make sure he is getting a bike with correct pieces worth the asking price. I would feel bad if I direct him to buy a bike for $25k and its a repop frankenbike that is worth $15k.

Buddhahoodvatoloco
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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#18

Post by Buddhahoodvatoloco » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:59 pm

If that is the case, then I would let him make the call. inform him what you know, and step aside.
Pete808 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:37 pm
Buddhahoodvatoloco wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:41 pm
Pete, that is a good reatil price, but your objective is exactly what??
Pete808 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:08 pm


I am waiting on the price. I know that he paid $21500 for it plus shipping and he put new tires on it so he is probably in it around $23k, and will probably want that plus a $1000 or so.
Just want to make sure that my friend is getting what he pays for. Since it is in the higher price range, I just want to make sure he is getting a bike with correct pieces worth the asking price. I would feel bad if I direct him to buy a bike for $25k and its a repop frankenbike that is worth $15k.

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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#19

Post by nmaineron » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:59 pm

I think it is a beautiful but not perfect machine but knowing the story about the dude needing to recap his investment plus a grand,nah, I hope he chokes on it!!

Andygears
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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#20

Post by Andygears » Sun Oct 14, 2018 2:01 am

nmaineron wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:59 pm
I think it is a beautiful but not perfect machine but knowing the story about the dude needing to recap his investment plus a grand,nah, I hope he chokes on it!!
Along with the restoration, for 20K+, the motor & trans should have been freshened, by a shop with paperwork/receipts verifying it. Since the bike appears to be built to be sold (silver paint instead of cadmium) the paperwork should accompany the bike and a test ride should be flawless. Otherwise, vaugue stories about "rebuilds" would make me recommend my friend pass.

My two cents
Andygears

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Re: 1953 Panhead assistance please

#21

Post by Speeding Big Twin » Sun Oct 14, 2018 9:42 am

Pete, the silver paint on the engine doesn’t help re the SN but I can’t see anything wrong with the visible characters and they appear normal factory types for a 53 Pan.
There may be clues in the 5 but they’d be easier to see in a close-up without that paint.
Notice the 3 has a flat top, a vertical serif at top left and a medium-length diagonal.
F and L are sans serif as I’d expect. Notice the lower horizontal stroke of the F is almost as long as the upper stroke and this was normal for 53 Pans. For 48–early-52 Pans the lower stroke was a fair bit shorter than the upper stroke but later in 52 it became longer.
Open-top 4 is as expected for 53. Notice the left stroke is slightly curved and there’s a horizontal serif across the base.
I imagine there are only three characters after the 4? If so then the SN is within production limits for 53 models. (Pan SNs for 53 began at 1000.)

BNs should be formatted as per the following example: 153-1234. Sometimes the BN is higher than the SN, sometimes it is lower and on rare occasions the BN matches the SN.

Stamped on top of the cases near the rear engine mounting bolts you may find 7s. For Panheads at least two types were used: seriffed; and sans serif. First was the seriffed 7 for 1948 models. For 1949 and 1950 I’ve seen both types but at some point during the 1950 model year the sans serif 7 seems to have taken over completely so that’s what I’d expect on a 53.

Ask the seller about date codes under the heads, at the base of the cylinders and under the trans case.

Re the gear cover, that type of four-fin is normal for 53 because it lacks the extra material at top left.
In his FE, Palmer contradicted himself about which cover was used for 53s. In that book he said more than once that the four-fin cover first appeared for 1954 models. However, the picture and caption on page 9 suggested 1953 and on the AMCA forum some time ago Palmer mentioned it.

In 2012 I emailed Bruce and advised him I’d found six four-rib covers. He replied, saying he too had six and he told me which years he thought they applied to. I disagreed with him on more than one point but I received no reply to the next email I sent him. In his SE he says the four-fin was first used for 1953 models. I disagreed in 2012 and I still disagree; I say it first appeared on some, but not all, 1952 models.
Eric

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