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1920 Excelsior Series 20

In America, Cruiser, Vintage by Tom Wacker0 Comments

Excelsior introduced its first motorcycle in 1905 after starting in the bicycle business. In 1910 Excelsior introduced their first V-Twin and by 1911 the company had been bought by Ignaz Schwinn of the bicycle firm that bore his name. 1915 saw the introduction of the ‘Big X’ V-Twin, a 61 CID power plant that would carry on to 1925. The …

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1978 AMF Roadmaster Moped 3-fer

In America, Italy, Less than 5k, Scooter, Small Displacement by Tom Wacker0 Comments

American Machine and Foundry was founded in 1900 by Rufus L. Patterson, inventor of the first automated cigarette rolling machine. In the course of time AMF bought many companies and manufactured many items, including Harley Davidson, Roadmaster Bikes, Alcort Sailboats, and AMF Atomics. Yes. AMF made small atomic reactors for the US Military. Fast forward to 1976. The gas crisis …

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1 of 1 – 1913 Harley-Davidson Forecar

In 3 Wheels, America, Vintage by Abhi0 Comments

How much would the last of something be worth? In a world that is dominated by scarcity, real or imagined, what is the value of ‘the only one known to exist’? This Harley Davidson Forecar is the only one, and it’s for sale. The Forecar was introduced in 1913 in response to a perceived need for delivery vehicles in the …

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Ending Soon – 1917 Colson Bicycle with Smith Motor Wheel

In America, Small Displacement, Vintage by Abhi0 Comments

The Colson Corporation sold bicycles between 1917 and 1953, typically through retailers like Goodyear and Firestone. So why are you seeing one on a page about motorcycles? Because this first year Colson bicycle is equipped with a Smith Motor Wheel! Around 1910, Arthur William Wall developed a direct drive motor wheel to power a bicycle – it was the first …

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1973 Penton Jackpiner 175

In America, Off-Road by Tom Wacker0 Comments

John Penton had a huge impact on two legendary motorcycle manufacturers at roughly the same time. Husqvarna and KTM both owe some of their success to the Ohio farmer. When Penton’s wife died in 1958 he took a year off to ride motorcycles. In the course of that year he won the Jack Pine and the Corduroy off road on …

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One Owner – 1969 Rokon Trailbreaker

In America, Off-Road by Abhi0 Comments

Rokon was founded in the early 60s with the intent of developing a “moto-tractor” that featured two wheel drive. This task was achieved with a combination of shaft, chain, and belt drives, and it enabled riders to go nearly anywhere – as long as they weren’t in a rush!

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1951 Indian Brave

In America, England, Standard by Tom Wacker0 Comments

Did you know that you have 11 choices to describe your personal relationship on Facebook? And that one of them is “It’s complicated”? I’d really like to give you a background and lineage on this Indian Brave but, well, it’s complicated. If anybody has a definitive history of the Indian Brave, I’d love to know. I’ll tell you what I …

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1976 TriVette

In 3 Wheels, America by Abhi0 Comments

During the 1970s, America was suffering through an oil embargo. Lots of small companies tried to enter the automotive market by focusing on gas mileage. Bob Keyes of Ventura, California looked at a study that found “93% of the vehicles on the freeways in Southern California were being driven with only a single occupant, the driver.” His thought that having …

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Custom Thunderbolt – 1996 Buell ST2

In America, Custom by Abhi0 Comments called the Buell ST2 Thunderbolt a touring sport bike (rather than the usual sport-touring nomenclature) because they felt Buell gave you a sport bike that had some touring features. This custom build keeps the ST2 name and motor…but not much else. What do you think about it?

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1953 Harley-Davidson ST165

In America, Small Displacement by Tom Wacker0 Comments

Part of the immediate aftermath of WWII was the Allies seizing and using certain German patents to boost their own civilian production. Among these was the DKW 125 that was copied in England by BSA (Bantam), in Russia (Mockba M1A), in Japan (Yamaha YA1) and Harley Davidson’s S125. Harley brought out the S125 in 1948 with it’s two stroke 125CC …

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1947 Cushman Ice Cream Vendor

In 3 Wheels, America by Tom Wacker0 Comments

It was a softer, gentler time. People were mostly polite to one another, and life moved at a slower pace. Even the ice cream man didn’t have a shrieking PA sound system to announce his proximity. The vendor had a polite and pleasant bell system to alert customers. Based on the 50 series scooter, Cushman made a front box three …