The first Harley-Davidson V Twin appeared in 1909 though it was not until the adoption of mechanically operated inlet valves in 1911 that replaced the ‘atmospheric’ type used in the
single cylinder models that production really took off.
The ‘F-head’ as it was known (inlet-over-exhaust) engine was built in 61ci and 74ci capacities (1,000cc and 1,200cc ) and would remain in production for the next 20 years. The Harley’s transmission was a direct drive by means of a leather belt, the same method of virtually all bike of this period but the need to make better use of the engine’s power particularly for sidecar pulling, introduced a two-speed rear hub for 1914, by which time chain drive and a proper clutch had been adopted.
Later that same year a conventional, three-speed, sliding-gear transmission with ‘step starter’ was introduced on the top-of-the-range version that also hadthis full electrical equipment, it was this model that became the ‘Model J’. The Model J had also gained a front brake, stronger forks and a pumped lubrication system by the time production ceased in 1929.
This UK delivered Model J was first registered as a combination on the 3rd July 1924, finished in Brewster green with gold lining, a colour that was only available in 1922 and 1923, it features battery/coil ignition and electric lighting. It is described by the vendor as being in generally good / ‘largely original’ condition but with the wheel rims and primary chain case restored and it appears that it has covered very little mileage. The battery case is a wooden replica with the original metal fixtures.
Since being in the current ownership it has been used sparingly but has completed two recent Banbury runs and the IWKR in 2016, and runs very well. It is supplied with an original buff logbook from 1924 and a UK V5C. This beautiful and very elegant Harley is one of the most collectable models, this example with its fantastic patina will grace any collection.