Taking a grinder to Britain's motorcycling heritage.
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Tuesday, 20 July 2010


As mentioned elsewhere, I am not the world's greatest fan of H-D's, no real reason, I don't dislike 'em it's just that most of 'em don't float my boat. Following a link from Dirty Bobbers led me to this, a Flathead bottom end with a Koslow o.h.v. conversion. Really good engineering and a pretty pukka looking period bike. The post with the picture reads as follows;

Andrew Koslow was an engineer and a competiton hillclimber for Excelsior Henderson in Chicago.
Of course you probably realize they were the Schwinn bicycle company as well.
The Koslow bicycle shop still exists in Chicago run by Andrew's 3rd and 4 th generation offspring!
After Schwinn stopped building motorcycles in 1931,
Koslow adapted the top ends from the factory hill climb race bikes to VL Harley and possibly other bottom ends.
My conversion is mounted on a UL flathead bottom end.
It displaces 84 cubic inches. It goes. The actual Koslow heads are very similar to the Super X hillclimbers but are bigger.
You may be aware of a legend named Pop Dreyer. He was a factory Indian racer.
He mastered the Flxi sidecar and was a genius welder and fabricator. He began as a teenager welding headers
in Duesenberg's race shop! Anyway, he also built quite a few midget race cars in the thirties and used Koslow top ends.
There is a picture in his biography ( written by his son and impossible to put down)
of him and his machinist in their shop preparing a Koslow . This is merely a precis of the entire story.

I guess that guys with this innate engineering ability still exist out there, but are their skills recognised or indeed required by the big multi-nationals nowadays. I reckon on looking for a copy of that biography though.

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