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Indian Chief Vintage

1912 Thor

I love at antique motorcycles. I have one or two over the years and loved the but would I want to own one? I think so. They take too work. I like to appreciate the that someone else did to a wonderful piece of history

The love and dedication that into restoring and then an antique motorcycle, not to mention the ($$$$$) is truly admirable.

A of years ago I toured the Motorcyclepedia in Newburgh New York and was enthralled by makes that have long gone, makes lasted just one or two years, I had never heard of. They all there. Some beautifully others rusty and dirty as the day came out of a barn in Iowa.

It was

At the turn of the century (the century) when fortunes being made in the bicycle a few started stuffing an engine the bicycle frame and a new world was The world we love so much.

One of the that was short lived had an important part in one of motorcycling’s legendary brands. Aurora in Aurora Illinois started parts and tools for bicycles in 1886, one of the companies buying tools and parts was Hendee the makers of Silver King and Queen bicycles…ringing a bell it will.

In 1901 George sent Aurora an engine to be and parts and tools made Aurora went and produced the of Hendee’s design which was the for the beginning of the Indian Moto company. Is that cool or

The deal was that Aurora build the motors and sell to others (with a royalty of course) but they couldn’t motorcycles to compete with No problem.

By 1903 Indian had its own set up and Aurora was once again on own. That same Aurora founded the Aurora Cycle and Bicycle Co. Thor was born.

At that point, was basically just a catalog all the parts, build it yourself. Not different from what we can do build cafe racers way.

By 1908 the Indian strings had been cut and Thor was motorcycles. Aurora/Thor built and then big twins under the name. They had some in racing, but nothing really of

Thor shut down production somewhere between and 1918. The reason I say somewhere is on paper, production ended in but bikes were assembled existing parts into and rumor has it that a few bikes sold up until 1920.

I a really nice 1912 on ebay today that make a great restoration The reason I think this is is because the bike is just complete as it is! It’s not a basket it isn’t a rust bucket it needs a few parts. Some going to have to make some you might find on the

It is a 5hp single…not what you would fast and not a bike that you ride in the Cannonball Coast to (even though it qualifies by The seller is not asking an unreasonable for what you are getting. So if you have a to restore a very unique with a pretty cool behind it.

Give this one a

Click on the pics below for info and more pictures.


1975 Indian

We all know someone who deserves a of coal in their Christmas The person that leaves motorcycle out in the rain because the only time it gets checks tire pressure when they go out to ride and a flat tire, oil changes as regularly as Congress actually something (never), they over to a barbeque and all they to the party is their appetite, borrow a couple of tools to do a adjustment and only one of them back…the list goes on but we all that person.

Most of us bought a motorcycle or two that we would be a good winter only to find that probably more work it it’s worth, in so many We end up finding a sucker…uh, I mean that thinks he can make good out of it (I have been sucker more than in my life..) and you are more than to send that two wheeled (if you have both wheels) was a off to new home.

Years back a group of buddies and I started this joke of passing around a at Christmas. It got mailed all over the and after about ten years actually opened it up. Surprise,surprise…it was the same as it was when it started all over the country journey.

A or two later one of the band of merry men to resurrect the tradition but this with a junk yard Ok, now this one didn’t shipped the country it was just transported to house here in So Cal. I was the recipient of said junk P.O.S.

I awoke December to a Suzuki something or other had one wheel, a rusty gas tank, no and one turn signal(which was hanging by one laying on my front porch. No one fessed up to being the one to start it but almost rolling Suzuki up in someone’s Christmas stocking for the ten years or so. Not a one of us ever did anything to it, we laughed our asses off every we dropped it off on a friends front with a bow on it.

Today I found on a bike that you can buy and start a tradition yourself with ‘friends’(?). It’s a 1975 ML100. It is truly a classic motorbike, well the seller so. It is almost complete? so says the it’s a rare find?

Oh it may be missing a few parts but it has some rust to make up for that. And the part is that the seller is to part with it for just $1000 dollars…how can anybody up a deal like that to a running joke with riding pals. A good isn’t always as cheap as a but how much do you like a good

Click on the pics below for pictures and more info. a good laugh at what thinks something is worth. is one Indian you know the Chief want to admit siring.

Indian ML100

1938 Scout Junior

A couple of ago a good friend of mine a 1937 Indian Chief, ten crates of parts and a frame. Ten later he rode that case’ Indian up to the front of my surf shop with the … eating grin I I have ever seen on face ever. Roger had the time to bring the bike to life without doing a level restoration. It was beautiful.

thing I knew I was riding Chief along the coast and the thing I wanted to do was give it to my friend. Alas, I handed to my friend, but riding that sparked a love for Indian

Roger too came under the of Indian. One by one he collected old Indians…I he pretty much spent his on his Indian collection. Other his first ‘Chief’ his favorite was the Junior’ he found in a barn in It needed a lot, I mean ‘a of love.

It wasn’t in milk but it could have been. did get it running without restoring it and I knew he was still riding paint, rusty bolts and a that is held together shoe laces.

Here is Indian said about the Junior, “You can’t out an Indian Scout, It will you out first”. The Scout was Indians blood through out the 1920′s and It was popular with everyone racers to women. Yes, in time period a good of women did ride motorbikes.

The Junior weighed just 350 and was very easy to handle.

The Scout Junior’s main in the marketplace was the Harley 45 incher but with a size disadvantage the outperformed the Harley. Remember, is a motorbike that in stock at that time only 5hp. The Scout provided with the basis for 1000cc

Sadly, the Scout was discontinued in

I found a really nice Junior on ebay this It appears to be an older restoration but really nice, I love the tires on the bike. The seller it is a runner but needs a new battery, no big

This truly is one of the best motorcycles ever built, weight, reliable (for the and fun to ride. Owning an old Indian is not nor easy but is certainly well it, just ask my friend Roger,

For info and pictures of this Scout Junior, click on the below. There are a lot more that reallt show how this bike really is.

Indian Scout Junior

Indian Chief Roadmaster

by year I have had this desire to own an Indian motorcycle. It out when I was just a small sitting on Santa’s lap at the local store.

Did I get one? No. Has my desire for an motorcycle been fulfilled? Not but it is getting a lot closer.

My yearning for an was rekindled by my friend Roger he bought a basket case ’37 Chief and brought it back to

Roger let me ride the ‘Chief’ a of times,the last ride was half a day…that’s why it was the ‘last’ That ride was when my for an Indian motorcycle grew more.

Today, I have a few One; find a basket like my friend Roger did and it. Two; buy one of the Harley clone styled to look like an from the recent past.

wait for one of the new Indian’s that will be a new original Indian. find one that is ready to go for a now…or, very soon little work on my part.

one option, no way. Number I’d rather do number one choice. three, high probability. four, the best choice.

I a very nice ’48 Chief on ebay today. This is the up Chief. Beefier motor, saddle bags. This is a runner according to the owner. I put new tires on the bike, check the and then ride.

From my of rides on a Chief I would a good tool kit, a few parts tucked away in the bags, and then just Ride as far as you want, the Indian get you there…in true classic

Click on the pictures below for pictures and info on this nice Indian for sale.

Indian Chief

1949 Arrow

Through the first of the 20th Century, Indian was the motorcycle manufacturer in the world. produced the fastest and most advanced motorcycles there Then World War 2 hit.

did supply motorcycles to the military for the war but Harley Davidson, Indian’s competitor, was awarded more of the to serve the armed forces This caused Indian financial problems coming out of the war but hung in there.

After the every motorcycle builder was on returning soldiers to be buying new as fast as they could them but, they counting on smaller, lightweight to be the market leaders. Harley went to Italy for lightweights, built their own and went to for new bikes, Triumph and BSA also into the lightweight pool but GI’s weren’t going for it.

and Harley had built their on big V-twins and that’s what the wanted. Harley seemed to the idea a bit sooner than and that was Indian’s downfall. is a lot of Indian history out there documents why Indian faded

One of the smaller bikes that built was the Arrow. A 220cc cylinder bike that was a great bike for its size, it did have its problems and Indian up losing money on the Arrow due to issues. Sadly, when the buying boom really did Indian was becoming just a

I found a true ‘barn Indian Arrow today on This has all the dust and patina could want in a vintage buried in some guys for decades. The Arrow wasn’t most popular bike and I said before it was saddled problems, but still, it is an interesting that I think is a good of what motorcycle manufacturers building to attract more

The motorcycle buying public interested in small bikes, wanted big, they horsepower, they wanted the bike. Come to think of it, not has changed has it.

The Arrow I found is a over from a closed in 1949. The motorcycle has just miles on it and with a bit of clean up I it would look like The Arrow may not have the status of the or even the Scout, but it is still an and that makes it special.

on the pics below for more and more pictures.

1949 Arrow

1937 Indian Junior

As I am thinning out the motorcycle here at the rancho, my thoughts much to my wife’s dismay, do I want next?”. After the Motorcyclepedia Museum in Newburgh, New last year I have an affinity for Indian motorcycles. We spent a good two hours through a large room purely to Indian.

The museum had one of very model year 1901! Solo models, car rigs, delivery bikes, bikes..if was Indian it was there. that visit I could feel it building…”I need an someday”, but which one? for most it would be the Indian The most iconic of all Indians.

The valanced fenders, the wonderful Plus motor and the perfect head front fender gotta have it. Well, not. There are other that may be more fun to ride and a bit unique, take the Indian Junior for example.

There actually three models of the the Scout, the Scout Sport and the The first two were 750′s and the was a 500cc or better known at time as a 31 cubic inch The Scout Sport won the Daytona 200 and the Scout saw service in World War 2 but the Scout Junior just of chuffed right along.

that I like motorbikes may not be as popular as others, I have myself drawn to the Scout Doing what research I there isn’t much out about the Junior other the fact that it is the ‘Junior’. So, I have learned is basically the Scout info you can find and a 31 cubic inch model of it and go

I like finding old bikes have not been restored but been resurrected and maintained. I a Scout Junior that the bill perfectly…now if I could unload a few (a bunch…) more I could actually get it.

The Indian I on ebay this morning is a running ’37 model that it’s age beautifully…kind of like Ann or Sophia Loren. It does a reproduction exhaust (the does come with the the motor and transmission were (the outside of the motor was ‘old’), the owner did put new tires on the and it has the original paint. I love it! Now I wish I could afford it.

a good bike for the money for the that wants a classic that is a bit more unique some others. And I’ll bet its fun to ride too.

Click on the below for more info and pictures. About three bikes out of my barn and an Indian find it’s home

1937 Indian Scout

’49 Indian Scout

How does a failure of a motorcycle become a Well, maybe because it was a dismal failure. Before WW2 and Harley were the dominant in the US motorcycle market. Both successful in racing and in general

During the war, both thousands of bikes to be used After World War Two, continued building the V-Twin but Indian decided that it was a design’ and looked to compete the lighter and faster British twins. Enter the Scout

The Scout was the first of the ‘Torque’ to come out of the Indian factory. It was after the Overhead Valve twins from Britain it fell somewhat short of the The original Scout was only so it was underpowered compared to the motorcycles it was to compete with and because rushed this design production the first series with a lot of problems.

Based on the Indian’s reputation was heading the toilet pretty quickly. issues, crankshaft bearings…you it, there were problems. The hope for this new model was in just one year.

In 1950 brought back the V-Twin and upgraded the Scout to 500cc and it the ‘Warrior’. In the one year period introduction to remodel, most all the had been addressed and solved, it was a case of too little too late and there was another problem…the It was still more expensive to buy a Triumph, Norton, BSA, AJS and wasn’t as fast.

Things not looking good for the Indian

So after all this history on a model I still find Indians quite interesting so I found one on ebay I had to look it.

This particular Scout has 2200 miles on the clock, not too but may be enough to have the well-known rear their ugly heads. What’s really is that it does have the tool kit, warranty and in card and the original registration.

The bike looks really and if you’re into Indian which I am finding myself and more drawn to, this is a bike worth looking at. For info and more pictures on the pic’s below.

’49 Indian

Indian Chief Vintage

Indian Motorcycle book

Lately I have gotten interested in Indian Motorcycles. old, American, English there were English the mini bikes, it doesn’t it’s where my Vintage mind is wandering nowadays.

My real exposure to Indian other than seeing in museums or bike shows, from Roger Herbison of California. Roger spent a of years restoring a 1937 When he first got it running he it by my store with the biggest on his mustachioed face (and by the his handlebar moustache was almost as big as the on his Indian. ). “You want to it??” he asked as it was sitting idling in my parking lot.

he could regret his offer I had my on, was sitting on the bike and asking if was anything I needed to know riding it. “Nope, just fun.” The next half was pure bliss. I spent minutes of that half thinking of a way I could convince that a roving band of hi-jacked his motorcycle, then I had to of where I could move to the Chief where Roger never find us.

Alas, I back into the parking lot and Roger his Indian back. by little the Indian legend and started building in my sub-conscious to that short ride.

Motorcycle simply refused to There had been a couple of changes and yeah, at one point had the ‘look’ of an Indian but were by a ‘catalog’ motor…close, but no cigar. they (the Indian company in Gilroy, California) ran out of though, they start the Indian ‘Power Plus’

Good looking, plenty of and truly an Indian. But, I said..they ran out of money and Indian was lost.

Fast forward a few

A friend of mine owns a motorcycle dealership featuring Davidson, Husqvarna, Husaberg and Paul is a dirt rider at but he does love riding his every day. When came out that Polaris of Victory motorcycles) had bought up Motorcycle.

I instantly called Paul and if he was excited about the news. He me that he was already in negotiations for a new across the street so he could out and give Indian a place to

This last December, Motoworld (myself and staff Heather) went to the Long motorcycle show and got a chance to see the new motorcycles. Truly beautiful. I never been a ‘Cruiser’ of person but there was / is something an Indian motorcycle that me want one…badly, (“Dear But, I want an old one. my banker (staff photographer go along with that

I wouldn’t take those to Vegas. So, I’ll be content, for the being, reading about That is where I came these books and magazines the Chief I would love to

Cruising through ebay morning I found a nice collection of Indian literature would help anyone an Indian motorcycle or would like to know more America’s first motorcycle. on the pics below for more

Indian Book Collection

’62 700cc Chief

You know, motorcycles has probably one of the most history’s of any motorcycle brand I can think of. From being the American motorcycle company, to little Taiwanese mini and everything in between. There is so in Indian Motorcycle history here on the web.

Because of my of vintage and unique motorcycles (I own a of one year only type read; hard to get parts I spend a good deal of searching the web and talking to riders have these motorbikes.

went from being the racer on the track in it’s lives, to a British made (either Matchless or Royal tucked into an Italian Interestingly enough however, than the Taiwanese mini Indian motorcycles have been well received by types but not so much by the motorcycle public. Police departments particularly fond of the various models, including the one we are talking today.

Indian motorcycle production in the original Springfield From 1955-1959 Royal were marketed as Indians. finally ended in 1960.

In everything went back to Enfield.

The 700cc Indian is based on the Royal Enfield twin was at the time was described as the ‘Superbike’. In 1959 Indian took the ‘Constellation’ and stretched out the and built up a much stronger box…that’s why the cops loved so much. Sturdy and steady.

is so much in Indian history is so fascinating. Harley Davidson the American ‘Lifestyle’ motorcycle but is truly the iconic American What is great at this is that finally Indian has found a home (Polaris makers of Victory motorcycles) will give the love and that this brand

And maybe, just maybe, will now be with us for another 100

I found this really 1962 Indian Chief on the other day and and I think it’s a bike to add to anybody’s collection. As as you go out and ride it. Now, there is an thing I found out about motorcycle, it is titled as a 1962 is probably a 1959 model?

If you back in the late 1950′s and the 1960′s many motorcycles titled the year they sold, not the year they actually made. This is the that has the stretched frame and the and Improved’ gearbox. It only has miles on the clock and the clock is the 150 MPH speedo…a little optimistic but cool to have.

This has been stored inside for than the past twenty of it’s life…So, it looks age but is in easily restorable / rideable There were only 800 of this particular produced so it into the ‘rare’ category nicely.

Click on the pics below for pictures and more info this really cool This is one the bikes that me really want a bigger And…a bigger bank

’62 Indian 700cc Chief

’74 MX74 Mini Crosser

I was much into mini (pesky little kids) last years World race in Utah. Team was there to interview WSBK take a lot of pictures and, a really good time. We saw old made some new ones, got interviews and expanded our moto-journalism

We got into mini motocross.

One of the things about going to Motorsports Park in Utah is the accommodations located right door to the track, the Deseret Park. Not only are the accommodations top so is the entertainment. After a fairly day at the track we decided to check out the moto-cross action. A short 100 walk put us right at trackside.

It was night. Mom’s, dad’s, the was there. We had an absolute blast the little kids racing. of these mini racers so small and young that had to hold them up at the starting then give them a push to get them started.

me wish I could have my kids at that age…I do a grandson now, so maybe….

running through ebay morning I found a neat vintage MXer, a 1974 75cc MX74. It may not be up to current and your junior racer get smoked at the local track but you know what, this is a little bike. Put junior on it and go riding, teach him or, her, good riding skills or yet…have one of the coolest pit bikes at local track.

Another thought, a great little to hang on the bumper of the motorhome?

little Indian is in really shape, mostly restored and are available all over the place. little bikes are so easy to and they’re hard to kill…that’s why are so many around still to day. There is a lot of good forums, resources and more on the net these bikes.

You don’t to go through all the Indian history you want to), but you will that this was a very time in the Indian Motorcycle legacy. If you’re looking for a little vintage dirt for young Throckmorton…get ‘em started the vintage kool aid early is I say, check out this Indian MX74, money spent. Click on the pics for more info and more

’74 Indian MX74

’49 Indian

The Indian Motorcycle holds a in the heart of American motorcycle that’s hard to describe. are books written about museums dedicated to Indian and a great movie, The Worlds Indian. The Indian Motorcycle of yore closed up shop in actually a few years before the company was sold but that’s story.

I found a very 1949 Arrow on ebay morning that might good under your vintage motorcycle riders tree this year. little Indian just a bit of work and a couple of parts to be a and then more work if you a full restoration. Is it worth a restoration?

Maybe, it only has 159 on it. and it is rather unique. Personally, I’d get it running and let it chuff me around or on a short Sunday ride in a while. Click on the pics for more info and pictures.

The I think about it, I’d probably it Indian red, get new stickers for it and ride it around.


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