1951 Harley Panhead

Harley-Davidson panhead
Milwaukee’s current offerings rarely get my motor running, but I find it hard to resist a good Panhead. And this one is an absolute knockout. It’s owned by Troy Critchlow of the Chico Moto blog, and it’s the quintessential vintage Harley, as seen through a 70s lens. Troy has an eye for a good ride and he’s an inveterate fiddler when it comes to mechanicals—so it’s not surprising his own bike looks like a million dollars. His Panhead is something of a hybrid, with a 1951 FL motor (74ci, high compression) connected to a 1939 EL transmission case with Pan gears. It’s all sitting in a 1949 wishbone frame with an offset Springer fork—“Bed springs on a pogo stick,” says Troy. The carburettor is an authentic Linkert, the magneto is a Morris, and there’s no battery—just a Cycle Electric generator and an Electric Franks regulator. Troy himself made the sinuous, stainless exhaust with the perfectly-judged upkicks, along with the sissy bars, and he also modified the tank to hold a little more fuel. And as you can see, he’s pretty handy with a camera too. Close to Harley perfection, don’t you think? [Check out Chico Moto for more vintage chopper goodness.]

Harley Davidson Panhead
Harley Davidson Panhead
Harley Davidson Panhead