Doug Coffey's RetroMod Panhead

Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 3

 I needed an oil tank for this build that would be rather unique. It had to hold a full size battery from a late model electric start Dyna or Softail as my large high compression stroker motor would need all the starting power it could get. It had to completely hide the battery because I didn’t want any of it to protrude above the frame rails and it had to hold lots of oil.
My preference was round oil tanks so I started looking for cylinder like containers to see what size might fit.
After testing a variety of ice cream containers and my wife’s Tupperware I found a one gallon paint can to be perfect. (once I cut the bottom out ...
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Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 4

 I started building my gas tank with a King Sportster tank shell available from Paughco. In this picture I have already cut the ends out to receive the tunnel in the bottom.  In this picture I have already started building the bottom from a flat piece of sheet metal I cut out and a tunnel. The tunnel is 1/2 of a piece of automotive exhaust pipe I cut with a plasma cutter and cleaned up on a belt sander.The elongated slots are for adding a rubber mount system.  Test fitting. Clearance all around the frame tube is required for rubber mounting tanks. The elongated slots left me room to tack weld mounting tabs to the frame. (This was way too complex, I ...
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Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 5

  Back in the sixties the movie Wild Angels came out shortly followed by a soundtrack album with a great coverOne of the bikes on the cover caught my eye. The one to the right of the lead bike has a set of low rise Zee style handlebars. Try as I might I could never find a manufacturer low rise Zee bars. Everything available was four inch rise or higher and it is still the same today.I decided I would make my own Zee bars for this new bike project.I wanted a beefier look for my handlebars than the usual one inch diameter so I used 1-1/4 inch DOM tubing and cut the pieces to size on my milling machine.  I made ...
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Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 6

I wanted rear belt drive on my new retro modern chopper. All the old rigid framed bikes from the factory were chain drive and they were messy and always need adjustment.After doing a little research I chose the shortest belt available. It was 123 tooth and had been used on the very first rear belt drives Harley offered on Shovelhead models.After installing the back wheel and belt I discovered I had two problems. The belt was too long and too wide.Later Harleys have narrower belts so I purchased a 70 tooth narrow rear belt sprocket and slit my belt on the milling machine to fit the late sprocket.  I wanted rear belt drive on my new retro modern chopper. All the ...
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Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 1

  Having been in the aftermarket Harley business since 1969, I have pretty much done everything  from lacing wheels and custom painting to establishing a performance specialty manufacturing company known as Head Quarters.  Over the years everything in Harley-Davidson aftermarket world has evolved. Today finds old timers like myself better skilled with better tools and far better parts to work with than we had back in the day. I have built probably thirty motorcycles from the frame up  and they have all been builds that kept pace with what the current factory offerings were and the style of the day. The latter builds being Evos and Twin Cams in rubber mount swingarm frames. That being said, I didn't find I got the same buzz ...
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Doug Coffey’s RetroMod Panhead Part 2

  I’m using a Baker DD6 transmission and they mount on a 5 speed transmission plate as used in Evolution Softail frames. I don’t care for the flimsy stamped sheet metal trans mounting plates available commercially so I opted to make my own.Back in the day we used to have V shaped rear foot peg mounting brackets I always thought looked pretty cool and they helped fill in an empty spot in the frame for a ‘tighter’ look I prefer.   Here you see me getting started.   Four holes later  With a little machining, we have a transmission mounting plate.  Here we see the old style foot peg bracket bolted on.  Now the transmission is in and will line up perfectly with the engine using a Baker ...
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