Well, the date is drawing near for us to head out the Antique Motorcycle Club of America’s biggest national meet in Davenport, Iowa. Commonly referred to as "The Big One", Davenport is one of my favorite places in the entire world. Where else can you go and see 20,000 people searching acres and acres of everything old motorcycles. This years meet will combine the swapmeet, Friday night races, field games, banquet, and bike show for a weekend of fun in the sun.
Over the years, I’ve found a lot of treasures at Davenport, from original paint boardtrack motorcycles to rare and hard to find parts for the many projects going on at the museum. I’ve always got an eye out for anything interesting. Last year, we picked up a Knucklehead midget racecar, a prototype Indian "Big Base" racer, and, of course, the Indian 4 Jack Pine sidecar racer. All three have been big hits at the museum.
This year, we’ve got a busy weekend planned. Aside from searching through 500 or so vendors for rare bits and pieces, we’ll be participating in a host of other activities. For the first time, we’ll be doing a tech seminar on Friday on the assembly of a "basket-case" knucklehead. It all started a few weeks ago when I got a call from an old buddy in Bloomington, IL. He mentioned that he had acquired from his dad a 1946 Harley-Davidson Knucklehead and was looking to sell it. But there was one problem. The bike had been apart for more than 50 years — his dad took it apart in 1954 and never got around to rebuilding it. Thinking that this would be a great project for a group of old bikers to do on a Friday afternoon, we agreed on a deal and the rest is history. I’ll be picking the bike up on the way to the meet. I’ve already gathered a pile of extra parts we might need for the rebuild….just in case. Its going to be a heck of project. We’ll be making a video about this "rustoration" for our Time Machine Video Archives and should have it online within the next couple of weeks.
After the "rustoration", we’ll be competing in the Friday night races on the 1924 Harley-Davidson FH boardtracker. This one is quite a bit quicker than the Thor I raced at Wauseon, so it ought to be quite a race. Each year, the Davenport vintage races draw hundreds of racers, competing on everything from Harley 125s to speedway bikes to boardtrackers. I hope to see you there.
Saturday, Matt and I will be competing in the field games. He’s kicked my butt at the last two Davenport games, so this time, I’ll be gunning for him. I’ll be on the new 1936 Knucklehead we just completed and Matt will be on his new ’38. The field games are one of the best parts of the weekend. Theres nothing like getting on a couple of old bikes and having fun.
I’ll be sure to keep you updated on the rustoration, the races, field games and all of the other great times that happen at this years Davenport. If you happen to be attending, be sure to stop by and say hey.