1948 Harley WL custom

1948 Harley WL custom motorcycle owned by Patrick Heselmans
This lovely 1948 Harley WL from Belgium has been completely rebuilt, right down to the transmission. Owner Patrick Heselmans gave the bike a new top end, with the intake manifold and cylinder heads spending time on the flowbench in the search for more power. Heselmans enlisted a friend to revise the cams, and the traditionally unstressed Harley 45ci motor now runs an increased compression ratio of around 6:25 to 1, sucking through a 34mm Mikuni carburetor. The bike now has a Mallory ignition—it’s been converted to 12V and runs a small battery—and uses an old bicycle light for illumination. Heselmans has made lots of other little changes throughout, giving this WL a period racer look. The wheels have gone up to 18” from the stock 16”, and there are some smaller accessory parts from the renowned Belgian custom builder Fred Krugger. Heslemans reports that the bike will top 90mph—and starts with one kick. [Photo © Werner Heselmans.]