Board index Flathead Power-Technical Questions, Answers, and Suggestions 45 Flatties WR at Daytona with Glide forks

WR at Daytona with Glide forks

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Post Fri Oct 18, 2013 1:02 pm

Posts: 1646
Just seen a pic in one of Alan Girdler's books, of a WR racing at Daytona with Glide forks. Year is quoted as 1950.it seems, from the little I've been able to find, that a few WRs were raced with these forks prior to the introduction of the KR. Does anyone have any pictures or information?
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...

Post Fri Oct 18, 2013 2:31 pm

Posts: 767
Location: CA USA
I tried to get more info on that several years ago. Evan talked to some old racers without any concrete info. I identified the rider in that picture as Joe Weatherly who went on to fame as a NASCAR driver. Joe won on the national level in both AMA and NASCAR before he was killed in a crash in 1964. I had the idea of doing a replica of Joe's Daytona WR, still might.

Post Fri Oct 18, 2013 7:16 pm

Posts: 391
There are plenty of pictures in period magazines of 45s with hydra-glide forks attached. Generally used as off-road bikes in articles about the Jack-Pine , Greenhorn, Big Bear, and similar enduros.

Post Fri Oct 18, 2013 10:29 pm

Posts: 1646
I'd be interested to see scans of any such pictures. To me, it begs the question of why the smaller, lighter British or Indian vertical twin forks weren't used on 45s; not being familiar with US competition rules, is it a homologation/eligibility issue?
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...

Post Sat Oct 19, 2013 12:58 pm

Posts: 767
Location: CA USA
If I remember that picture accurately, it was 1949. At that time HD only had the 41mm wide glide fork so that would need to be what they used with a factory bike. At least that was the explanation I got. No actual records that I could find. I spoke with Don Emde about this motorcycle as Don wrote a great book about the Daytona 200. Don shared that his father Floyd and Joe Weatherly were close friends and Don remembered Joe well as a family friend. Don could not recall anything ever being said about that particular motorcycle configuration.

Post Sat Oct 19, 2013 2:20 pm

Posts: 763
Location: Pa. , USA
If you think a WR with glide forks is odd I have a 1952 factory race poster with Bill Miller on a KR and Roger Soderstrom on a Pan with a springer in the 80" class at the Peoria TT, guess it was whatever the rider preferred..
Vintage roadracing, Class C, AHRMA # 335

Post Sat Oct 19, 2013 4:22 pm

Posts: 1646
I'm just intrigued as to what it can have been like, racing a 45 with that at the front. Then again, the springer is a heavy old thing, as is the 45 frame - I was surprised to discover that the 45 and Big Twin frames are about the same weight. I've always thought that both HD and Indian missed a great opportunity to put tier proven 45" flathead engines into more modern frames with 4 speed transmissions in the late 30s.

Then again, considering the enduring success of the Sportster, you can't really argue against the basic concept of the K series, a genuinely innovative design at the time apart from the obsolete flathead top end.
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...

Post Sun Oct 20, 2013 4:49 pm

Posts: 159
Yes, I miss my old one from the nineties! Image

Post Sun Oct 20, 2013 8:21 pm
Pa Site Admin

Posts: 5774
Location: Ohio USA

wilko wrote:
Yes, I miss my old one from the nineties! Image


That is one beautiful K model.

Post Tue Oct 22, 2013 11:07 pm

Posts: 693
Location: somerset, oh usa
A rule that all major components had to be OEM could be the reason for not using lighter options for hydraulic forks before the k came out.
I believe all tt's were an open (unlimited) class and common for 61, 74, and 80's to be entered.

Post Wed Oct 23, 2013 1:02 am

Posts: 1646
There certainly are numerous pics of a Big Twins in TT trim. I had assumed they were different classes but I nay just be wrong.
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...

Post Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:17 am

Posts: 763
Location: Pa. , USA
The poster I have list it as ; 80" National TT championship , I hear there's some fellows here on the east coast vintage racing Pan heads on dirt, that should be interesting..
Vintage roadracing, Class C, AHRMA # 335

Post Fri Oct 25, 2013 1:02 am

Posts: 217
Location: Palo Alto, CA
There was a beauty of a panhead TT bike on the dirt at Wauseon this year! Will post some pics when i can get to them.


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