I’ve not yet made a final decision on all the identification markings I will place on my WLA. But I learned a lot while trying to finalize that markings decision. Here is just one example of what I learned which could be a factor in making a final markings decision. Referencing the WLA luggage rack…..it was originally designed to accommodate a radio transmitter receiver. That radio transmitter receiver was the SCR-510, also identified as the BC-620 radio transmitter receiver shown below.
The radio transmitter receiver also sported a fitted cover and mounting plate bracket. The mounting plate bracket was designed to mount to the WLA luggage rack. The mounting plate bracket has slots which line up with the slots in the WLA luggage rack. The mounting plate bracket is also shock resistant to remove the impact vibrations from the WLA rigid frame. See pic below. Though parts books call the WLA luggage rack a luggage rack, a few military service manuals call it a radio carrier.
Sorry for the small pic. That is all I had. The bottom of the mounting plate bracket is also not shown. There is about another 3/8” of plate not showing in the pic. You can also see the slots at the bottom of the pic that line up with the WLA luggage rack slots.
Publications concerning the WLA model types claim the radio transmitter receiver was never used on the WLA’s as the luggage rack was originally designed for. They also claim it was the military who decided not to use the WLA’s in this manner. I believe deciding not to use and equip WLA’s with radios is true but I also believe this, not to equip decision by the military, came after several WLA’s had already been equipped with radios. The 1941 WLA show below severed in England. The pic was taken in 1942.
Further more…..I also believe the military eventually decided a radio transmitter equipped WLA would be very useful in certain operations in Europe and the Pacific late in the war. Radio transmitters evolved during WWII with upgrades in communications. The WLA shown below served in the Pacific. I personally held dialog with the owner of this WLA and he stated the bike was restored as found. Note how the military mounted a later type radio transmitter receiver to the springer instead of the luggage rack.
The pic below looks to be a U.S. Navy SP [ Shore Patrol} WLA with a luggage rack mounted radio transmitter receiver. Shore Patrol was the Navy’s version of the Army’s MP [ Military Police ].