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military warehouse find

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gypsy

Posts: 60

Joined: Sat Oct 13, 2001 12:01 am

Location: vicksburg ms usa

Post Sat Sep 13, 2008 2:52 pm

military warehouse find

ran into a friend of mine today that has an uncle who is a colonel in the military. the army was liquidating some old surplus & there were about 20 45s still in crates & his uncle snagged one of them for him. said the motor was seized from sitting but he's in the process of cleaning the cosmoline off of everything. gonna go by & check it out tomorrow. so there are some still in warehouses or these could have been the last. serial # was 1943wla.
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Pa

Site Admin

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Location: Ohio USA

Post Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:39 pm

Re: military warehouse find

Tell us where the other crates went. Pa
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Chris Haynes

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:58 pm

Re: military warehouse find

I really doubt that many people know what cosmoline is. Add to that the fact that cosmoline was not used by Harley-Davidson on motorcycles placed into crates, plus the fact that there never was a 1943 WLA, makes this story just another BS story.
Image
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Pa

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Post Sat Sep 13, 2008 7:44 pm

Re: military warehouse find

Wax.......
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Cotten

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Location: Central Illinois, USA

Post Sun Sep 14, 2008 11:07 am

Re: military warehouse find

Hair jelly!


....Cotten
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44u

Posts: 304

Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2004 12:01 am

Location: oklahoma usa

Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:41 am

Re: military warehouse find

There's always a story being related by someone's uncle/aunt/granddad/best friend/or 4th cousin twice removed about a warehouse with WLAs in the next town over.

A 43 WLA would be a rare bird indeed. :wink:
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Kurt

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Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 11:32 am

Re: military warehouse find

Gotta love these stories and how the facts keep changing the more they get told. Pretty soon you'll hear tales of '52 WLA's that are still crated from WWII :roll: .
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Chris Haynes

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 11:34 am

Re: military warehouse find

Kurt wrote:Gotta love these stories and how the facts keep changing the more they get told. Pretty soon you'll hear tales of '52 WLA's that are still crated from WWII :roll: .


Or a batch of KA's that were rejected and the crates never opened.
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ohio-rider

Posts: 232

Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2007 7:26 am

Location: Ohio

Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 5:16 pm

Re: military warehouse find

Damn Chris... Where do you keep all these photo's? I'm going to need a new computer to store them all. :D
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Pa

Site Admin

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Location: Ohio USA

Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 7:37 pm

Re: military warehouse find

I wonder if he really meant WLC ? Pa
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Chris Haynes

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Mon Sep 15, 2008 8:50 pm

Re: military warehouse find

Pa wrote:I wonder if he really meant WLC ? Pa


PA,
It is a fantasy. It is always the same. I know a guy who has a Friend/Relative who found all these bikes in crates. They never appear.

Canada, on the other hand, did have a lot of WLC's that they surplused in the '70's and '80's. I have seen some of them.
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45Brit

Posts: 1416

Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:29 am

Post Tue Sep 16, 2008 12:30 am

Re: military warehouse find

I remember the Canadian WLC's, some of them came to UK. There was a general clearing-out of ex Cold War supplies around that time; the most visible result over here was the appearance of numbers of BSA B40s and Austin Champs. I had a bike using an engine from that source. There are bikes now coming available from the ex-Soviet countries now, but few of them have been in storage and most are being touted on ebay by some very hard-line commercial operators. You only have to look at some of the near-scrap being offered at premium prices from one Greek source in particular to see the state of THAT market.

that's why I have settled on a 45 as my project-of-choice. I have enough parts to get the project rolling and there is Kurt and a couple of other sources for good-quality repro items at realistic prices; I know I can build a mechanically-sound bike that can be used is it was originally intended

I did see, with my own eyes, two Indians recovered from an oil trap during the demobilisation of a USAF base in East Anglia during the 90s; but they were well known and had been snapped up by dealers before they ever saw daylight. Neither was complete, both required complete restoration, but what parts were there, were fully preserved and they were the most complete as-found examples I've seen for a long while.
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...
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Chris Haynes

Posts: 2631

Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2000 12:01 am

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Tue Sep 16, 2008 9:50 am

Re: military warehouse find

Canada was actually selling NOS WLC's still in the crate. I have photos of one that I took after the new owner had put 1,200 miles on it riding it to Harley's 85th or 90th. I can't remember which. The owner had all the documentation with him. His receipt for the purchase and the magazine advertising for them. $350.00 for a bike out of the crate and $50.00 for a bike in the crate.

I know some things get lost in warehouses. In 1966 I was stationed at Port Hueneme, CA. There were dozens of "Temporary" tar paper warehouses all over the base that were built in WWII. The base decided to tear them down. Many of them were still packed. We didn't find any Harley's but we did find a case of Indian Scout parts books. But the big find was a NOS appearing airplane. I didn't realize exactly what it was at the time other that it was a Corsair. A couple days later a couple of Marine flatbed semi's appeared and loaded up the Corsair and hauled it away. We were helping to get it out of the shack and load it. The Marine officer in charge told me this was the legendary "Super Corsair" prototype. It was the same airplane but had an extra row of cylinders on the engine. Extremely fast, but poor fuel mileage.
But this was 42 years ago.
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Jerry Wieland

Posts: 606

Joined: Mon Nov 01, 1999 1:01 am

Location: Menomonie, Wisconsin, USA

Post Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:26 pm

Re: military warehouse find

In the early 70's I was stationed in Japan with the 1st Marine Air Wing and I helped dig out a bunch of old stuff out of a warehouse and we found a bunch of WW2 vintage gauges and a couple of brand new propellers for F6's. Same story - neat but no motorcycle stuff.

I have a friend however that works for a company that buys/sells and exports obsolite aircraft parts and he says that in an old hangar somewhere in Argentina there are about six old HD's sitting in a corner. I've asked him for more info but he says nobody will tell him anything and besides he speaks poor Spanish and communication is hard. He has no idea of the vintage. He claimed they were painted black and not OD.

Jerry
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45Brit

Posts: 1416

Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:29 am

Post Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:33 am

Re: military warehouse find

H-Ds were supplied to Argentina for police and civilian use. There was a long-established problem there with corruption and embezzlement of government supplies of all descriptions, run-away inflation over several decades and a protracted revolution in various stages. I wouldn't be greatly surprised to find almost anything squirrelled away there. getting any sort of details, or doin anything effective about it, would be a different matter, though. You can bet that anything tucked away is known about by any number of people....
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...
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44u

Posts: 304

Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2004 12:01 am

Location: oklahoma usa

Post Sat Sep 20, 2008 12:12 pm

Re: military warehouse find

About 30 years ago I heard a story about some old Indians sitting in a shed. This shed was on the outskirts of town near an isolated house.
The guy who was telling me and a buddy one weekend about this was insistent that there were "half a dozen untouched Indians" in that old shed. Of course we were dubious about this tale and found it hard to believe that even back then these Indians would have not been scarfed up.

He gave general directions on how to find the place so me and my buddy went looking. No one was at home and a rickety old shed door was standing open so we decided to go take a peek inside.
Sure enough; the guy was not lying. There were at least half a dozen untouched Indians in the barn. The only problem was they were were all small 80 CC??? displacement mini-bikes/dirt bikes that had been badged as Indians. :lol:
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Bill B.

Posts: 2

Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 9:15 am

Post Wed Nov 05, 2008 1:26 pm

Re: military warehouse find

I've got a set of green cases with no VIN on left case boss but -43 belly numbers. What would a solo built on these cases be considered, a WL ?
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Chris Haynes

Posts: 2631

Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2000 12:01 am

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Wed Nov 05, 2008 11:23 pm

Re: military warehouse find

Bill B. wrote:I've got a set of green cases with no VIN on left case boss but -43 belly numbers. What would a solo built on these cases be considered, a WL ?


Without factory numbers it would be a Special Construction.
I used to by those NOS cases from Dixie for 6 bucks a set. There is the story of a Harley dealer that bought truckload of them from Dixie and took them directly to the scales and sold them as scrap and made a tidy profit.
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Pa

Site Admin

Posts: 4713

Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2000 1:01 am

Location: Ohio USA

Post Thu Nov 06, 2008 8:54 am

Re: military warehouse find

Wouldn't his cases make a good set of replacement cases for a 43 WLC Chris ? That is, if he has an original set that is scrap ? Pa
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Chris Haynes

Posts: 2631

Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2000 12:01 am

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Post Thu Nov 06, 2008 10:13 am

Re: military warehouse find

Pa wrote:Wouldn't his cases make a good set of replacement cases for a 43 WLC Chris ? That is, if he has an original set that is scrap ? Pa


They would be perfect replacements, as long as he wasn't putting the bike up for AMCA judging. They banged Bruce for having replacement cases on his WLA a few years ago. I guess a NOS factory part is no good to the club if it is an engine case.
I wonder if the WLA replacement cases came with the serial number change postcard like the civilian cases had? If so the number of the old case could be applied to it and the card filled out and returned to the MoCo.

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