Wednesday, June 17, 2009
They are absolutely unreliable, undependable, no matter how much folks talk about their heritage! Especially those from Gilroy, California.
The real problems seemed to start in the early 1950's...
But I'm sitting here staring at the open guts of one right now. the connections under the tank console have vibrated apart! I am now experiencing the same electrical problems that another Indian owner that I know had a few years back. The closest mechanic (who is excellent) lives in the South Sound Area and the idea driving through Tacoma traffic with a trailered bike sucks! No one closer than him will even touch an Indian.
The local Harley shop won't even talk about working on them. The only thing worse is trying to find parts. A few years ago when I blew up the guts in my crankcase, I had to have the engine shipped all the way to florida for a rebuild. 4th corner to 2nd corner and back. One of my riding buddies laughed that my Engine has travelled farther than I have. I made a few disparaging comments about Harleys being bastard children of bowling alleys and golf carts and about his Marine Corp heritage... (oops, Once again I was outnumbered, and forgot that you insult one of 'em and they all gang up on you...) After the beating was over and they were picking me up, they did try to make me feel better by telling me that yes, Indians are the sexiest bike on the road, and they would all love to own one, but that they're not good enough mechanics.
Thanks, I think...?
Anyway, back to the present, I am contemplating trying to cobble together my wires and whether to try to find an aftermarket coil on the internet or find a way to put a 'harley' coil on it. I don't mind twisting wrenches and even enjoy it under the right conditions, but electronics are for folks who have much more patience than I can muster. I've noticed that the new era harley shops are way too much into OEM parts and have run into a couple of Harley shops who won't work on REAL Harleys. They only seem to work on Evo's and newer.
Don't tell me about OEM parts, either. I could no longer care less.
One fellow who stopped by yesterday has an old chopped 45 with welded rebar for footpegs and forward controls, mousetrap clutch, and suicide shift, a set of Chevy points, and other various dodge and ford parts. it is a scary death machine, only a crazy vietnam vet would ride. In other words, my favorite kind of bike! But he wasn't too much help as his bike is 6 volt with a positive ground. I've seen farmers' tractors that were less cobbled together.
So, while I'm contemplating solving my electrical dilemma, I'll visit a couple other blogs, then go ride this itty bitty one lung hard tail suicide shift (no Mousetrap) around the block a few times. ( my block is about 13 miles) Maybe later I'll go to one of the local Harley shops and tell 'em I need a coil for an S and S motor. If I take mine in, they'll know it's for an Indian, and not be very helpful. I think they prefer checkbook cowboys over us backstreet skum, these days...
...anyway, pray for global warming to continue and keep the shiny side up!
(p.s. check out THE HORSE on my sidebar, those guys showcase some incredible home built bikes and none of that theme-bike nonsense)