Saturday, January 31, 2009

1936 Harley Davidson Knucklehead OHV parts that are one year only.

Close up of "telescopic" downtube.
square toolbox bracket

1936-40 neck,if i'm incorrect email me...The folks who make very nice knockoffs dont quite get this casting 100% correct.

1936 fragile sidecar loops, most sheared off from stress load. note the curvature of the tubing, last year for that.
1936 only Knucklehead frame showing brazed welding thru out construction, 1 tube from the neck all the way to the rear axle stays.
Check out this very, very rare foto of the Harley Founders and the "new" E-Series Bikes.
Given that this was February of 1936, Workers who had not been laid off were on a reduced schedule.
Management had all taken pay cuts - - - -(something to be learned by that today!).
The look on their faces tells it all. "This overhead valve v-twin has got to get us out of near bankruptcy".
It did.
A family business w their names on the tanks! I think they took a little bit more pride w that in mind, You cant' always count on outsiders running the family business.
Hell of a assembly line!
More fotos and captions from Paul Seidlers 1936 Knucklehead.

Another view of the '36 only rear brake drum you mentioned in an earlier blog - -
Viewers should note the chain guard mount - - -this is the "revised" style used after the first 150 or so models went down the assembly line. Earlier style was more elaborate/ over-engineered and probably changed due to materials/labor cost shaving.

Also-see the picture of the tank/fork top - - - -the quiz of the week is"what 4 things are shown in this picture that is '36 E-series only????"- - -1) unique shift gate w/ no notches.2) 100 MPH speedo w/ no trip meter. 3) 4 drilled holes on the fork topplate. (no one seems to know why) but this is '36 only. '37 and laterversions were solid w/ no holes.And 4) barely shown---note the ride control adjustment knob is on the rightside - - -'37 and later this shifted to the left side.

The air blow out was added during the Jan-June'36 E-Series production run toblow out debris as you have correctly surmised.My 36 EL-1985 has the air nipple. Please see picture.It is one of those many '36 E series oddities in that no record was made ofwhen they added this plus I've seen later serial numbered bike w/ no airnipple.
Note the picture of the Linkhart M-5 Carb - - -note the raised "4" on theboss on the side. This is '36 only version of the M-5 carb dedicated to theE-Series bikes
My odyssey with 1936 Knuckles started w this obscure 120 mph white face no trip speedo on the right above, I couldn't find it on any bikes or books, Later i learned it was a 1937 HD 45 speedo. 2009 and one can buy excellent "remanufactured" speedos that are identical to the originals, but made in 2009. pointless to search for a junked out original, they are gone to history.
Late 1936 oilbag with "hockey puck" style stoplight switch actuated by chain. Banjo fittings on 1936 and 1937 all models. Some folks would add the rear drain plug line on 1937 oil tanks to make the more valuable 1936 tank. Four styles of oil tanks in 1936. The motor company did alot of experimenting w bikes in 1936, what worked , what didnt.

Closeup of super rare 1936 only Carb cover, when a rider tipped the bike over, the first part to absorb the impact was the carb cover, Some aluminum rocker blocks had a "air blow out" fitting attached to the rocker block, my thinking is that the intention was to blow out debris in the oil line.No clogged oil line therefore no blown apart siezed engine.
1936 only relay bracket for Delco relay, Early distributor with "hole" on the side to feed distributor wires. Hole is not visible and is closest to 4 fin cylinder.
1936-37 only clutch pedal, Square footboards beginning in 1914 continue to 1939. A neat holdover from the earliest bikes. I'm running a belt drive vs stock chain, i've got the original clutch set up boxed up.Far less vibration ,noise and wear and abuse.
The engine case also shows the 1936-39 reinforcement rib at 9 oclock and 11 oclock in this foto, to add strength to the engine case, 1941 -1947 knuckles carried that rib out a further 2 inches.

1936-39 carb manifold secured to Linkert M5 carb, Some of these manifolds would surface w a machined hole w a screwdriver slug, My personal thought is folks were gas priming the carburetor in one location vs 2 locations on each head. Above the manifold, the 1 year only top motor mount. I used about every compound i could to seal up air leaks, the most effective being teflon tape,
Early 1936 rear head w primer cup,early 1936-1937 "baby food jar" rocker housings. Note the reinforcement rib on the support bracket, The story is theres 3 different head styles for 1936.
Presently i dont have fotos of the other styles to post. Primer cups function to "squirt" gasoline into head for hard starting, Gas caps w the "syringe" fuel "injector" are super rare, i have seen well made knockoffs but not in at least 5 years. Definately 1936 only.
Early 1936 front head w slotted screw vs primer cup, later heads have the unfinished non machined "bump" and 1940s era heads have done away w them. Another holdover from early bikes that were primed w fuel for hard starting
If anyone has fotos of unique rare 1936 Knucklehead parts please contact me so i can post them for study.
I'm more interested in peoples fotos of parts and descriptions vs opinions, I love all motorcycles, scooters etc, to me its all fun. scooters for buzzing down alleyways in Naples or big German iron.


Anonymous said...

nice to view your sight. i am the owner of a mid to early 36 knuckle. i am traveling at the moment and don't have my sn handy. however i enjoyed viewing your sight, next time you are in south florida let me know and i would look forward to meeting you

Chris Haynes said...

There are a lot more '36 only parts. You have barely scratched the surface. Early 36 E Yell's had a tendency to backfire when being started. An aftermarket company sold a backfire valve to be installed in the intake manifold. Unfortunitly they caused vacum leaks. that is why you find intakes with a plug in them.

Merlin said...

I have a 36E on the lift came out of LA california.the new owner wanted me to make a runner out of it.its been previously restored but has many issues that im dealing with as i go.rear head is cracked from intake valve seat to outer perimeter by intake port.i have had to alter rear rocker shaft to resemble exposed roccker style as it was a later shaft and dried out the rear exaust guide and made a mess out of the valve.anyone who has a head please notify me at