When the California Motorcycle Helmet law took effect in 1992, the old man decided if he was going to have to look like a dork, (what he referred to as the Peewee Herman look), it wasn't right to be riding a chopper. So he rebuilt the '47 Knucklehead as a stock bike. He had been collecting the parts for it for years. When he got the stock original frame and the springer front end it all began to come together. I loved it from the beginning.
So, he had the tank shift, suicide clutch and throttle. We still had the mechanical brakes. After the last trip to Sturgis he went ahead and put disk brakes and a stock windshield on it. It's still 6 volt.
The stock bike was so much more comfortable to ride than the chopper had been. I had a nice wide flat seat, and the foot pegs were positioned perfectly so my knees didn’t get all tweaked and I could use my legs as shock absorbers, because of course it was still a rigid frame and didn’t have them.
Besides all that, I think it looks pretty cool. I was just going through my old photos, and I don’t have many really good ones of just the bike, not packed or anything. We still have the ’47, always will, but it is not in prime shape at the moment. It’s sitting in a corner of the shop waiting for a rebuild, and it possibly will have a new paint job by the time it’s on the road again.
At the moment the riding bike is the “new” bike a 1965 Panhead. It has a push button, electric start and shocks, which do soften the bumps some. At first I hated it. It just didn’t feel stable in the corners. But I am getting used to it, and it is pretty nice that he can start the bike while I am sitting on it.
For more of my stories, visit my HubpagesWhat-to-Take-to Sturgis on your 1947 Harley Knucklehead