1933 VL -- Rebirth of an American Classic

Rebirth of an American Classic: The Build Begins

   After months of planning, my 1933 Harley-Davidson build officially started on Black Friday.  That’s when I made the long trip up to Replicant Metals (www.replicantmetals.com), located a mere 7 hours north of me in Pennsylvannia.  Owner Tom Feezer was waiting for me with a set of matched 1933 VL cases when I walked into the shop. These will serve as the basis for my build and are the most important part as the VIN number stamped on these cases is what makes the motorcycle a ’33 model. I plan to stay true to what the factory produced in ’33, but technically anything I build with these cases will be titled as a ’33 Harley-Davidson.  Setting aside the cases, I started making ...
Read More

Rebirth of an American Classic: Case Repairs

 Before the engine could be rebuilt, the cases needed some additional work to repair a damaged portion of the front baffle.  It appears that an unknown piece of debris was wedged between the backside of the baffle and the flywheel which eventually knocked a hole right through the baffle.   Since HD engine cases are made from aluminum, the best method for repairing the hole was to use a TIG welder to fill in the missing material.  The hole was located at the thinnest portion of the baffle, so a piece of copper plate was used to cover the hole and provide support for the weld.  The entire case half was then placed in a parts oven set to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for ...
Read More

Rebirth of an American Classic: Transmission Rebuild

 My 3-speed transmission started out very similar to my engine, an empty case and a pile of parts, all in need of cleaning.  So the first step was to break everything down into individual pieces and perform a thorough inspection of each piece, to see which parts just needed cleaning and which parts needed repairs or replacement.  Luckily most of the parts were in good shape, even the transmission studs, so everything was put into the blasting cabinet.  It’s always important to note that you don’t want to blast bearing surfaces and fine threads, so these areas need to be covered before the part goes into the blast cabinet.  After a couple of hours of blasting, the results speak for themselves.  Next ...
Read More
Scroll to Top