When the stock market crashed in ’29, most American motorcycle manufacturing firms went out of business. H-D, of course, was one of the few that survived. With only a little bit of money to play with (thanks to Harley’s bottoming out of sales in 1933), the company was limited to incremental changes. The 1934 Harley Davidson VLD got the company back on the right foot. This was their top of the line bike, and today we’ve got a restored numbers-matching example.
This flathead had aluminum alloy pistons and a 5:1 compression ratio that yielded 36 horsepower at 4,500 rpm. There was no rear suspension, though the seat had a ‘full floater’ spring. A 3-speed hand shift took care of gearing duties, but the foot-operated clutch was interesting in that you could lock it in place. You could come up to a stop, lock the clutch and leave your bike in 1st while you waited for the light to turn green. When you weren’t sitting around at lights, this bike could hit about 90 miles per hour.
The seller of this example calls it “a fine example of a surviving complete motorcycle that was restored, properly cared for, maintained and preserved for the past 87 years.” The paint and finishes have been restored, and it’s been “mechanically restored with original parts.” The seller states that it starts cold with two kicks and starts hot with one kick. The sale includes several accessories – 100 mph Corbin seat, buddy seat, steering damper, brake light switch, and a jiffy stand.
Find this classic Harley-Davidson for sale in Elkhorn, Wisconsin with bidding up to $28,400 and the reserve already met here on eBay.