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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As some of you know Big Twin our famous twin engine 5 wheeler was recently on Ebay. It did not sell at the time but it has just changed hands. It is now has only its 4th owner in 41 years. Dave Brackett the builder of it posted a short story and couple current pictures about it and where it currently resides on my AEE blog. I spent last weekend with Dave and he is the guy that really did the designing and building at AEE. He is still building cars and bikes for his own enjoyment. The very best news is Big Twin is going to be restored! If nothing else check it out for the goodness of the Molly paint job that's still holding up pretty well after all this time, much of it spent in a barn.

http://aeechoppers.blogspot.com/
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You should have heard what it sounded like...now that was some kind of cool! by the way there are stories out there about the engine with the reversed head being something Harley did. Not true, Dave Brackett said the modification was done simply by some machining at AEE.
Interesting part is that somehow Tom McMullen got two engines out of Harley back then. It didn't matter how much money you had you could not get an engine unless you were a dealer yet he did. Brand new crate motors that got torn down, chromed and put back together.
 

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Are they gonna save the paint/can it be saved or is it undergoing a total strip and resto? Seems a shame to waste the history in that old showpiece. If it was me I'd re-chrome as much as I could afford, make it run, and have a blast.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
there were some offers going on behind the scenes but the truth is its going to take a significant effort to get it back to new condition. Paint might be able to be saved, I have not seen it in person but Molly's paint was some kind of tough shit. Whoever tried to put a blower on it (why?) cut in to the chassis so it needs work. The original girder front end is still with it (not the one that is one it, don't know what that abortion is). Engines need a rebuild and rechrome no doubt. It can be done but it was going to be a decent sized number to get it right which held down the bidding. Not to mention what do you do with it? Bad ass to run down the road with but really more a show piece.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Dave Brackett spoke with him about following along on the restoration and the guy was amenable to that. So hopefully we can make arrangements to get updates. I'm still stunned that Dave built that thing in 32 days from bare ground. I got to see the very first sketches he made of it last week when visiting him. They were never published and I'll try to get copies of them to post. Interesting stuff.
 

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Sick! But exactly...what the hell do you do with it? I mean, it would be awesome to have, but mostly just for looking at.
 

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That's too funny. I was cleaning out a box of crap in the basement a few weeks ago and found my old Hot Wheels collection from when I was a kid. That was one of the models I had, I'll never forget those back tires...

-Kuda
'49 panchop
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I got an email from one our members about Big Twin. Said at the age of 17 the style and look of it inspired him so much he still thinks of it in his job which is furniture design! Is that cool or what 40 years later?

I forgot to mention the Big Twin had a unique set up. Basically you could end up with the two center drive wheels off the ground if you crossed a swale in the road which means you weren't going anywhere. Two outers were just along for the ride! Rear end had torsion bar suspension so you could slam it down low.
 

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I was just thinking, if this bike didn't have provenance because of AEE, Tom McMullen, and being a survivor, and it was built yesterday by Walrus Face and/or Nostrils, it would be front and center in the Ugly and Funny thread and everyone would be whining about, "What a waste of two Ironheads."
Whoever put that girder on it was a numbskull. There's no way it can function at that angle......and it's ugly anyway
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
maybe so but it is what it is. That girder thing on it is absurd and not the girder we built for it. They have it and will put it back on. Remember this was built to win the Oakland roadster show and did so. Most bikes, cars or trucks purpose built for something like that tend not to be so cool looking 40 years later. Truthfully it was much better looking in the original red paint, not so in your face. I do know this you never forget being behind that thing going down the road.
 

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It's cool just based on the fact someone made it work,, Roths trikes were for show as well ,,the 70's was SHOW time. It's engineering,,shame some folks can't see that
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Roth's trikes were production vehicles and were cool in their own right. Big Twin was purpose built and had superb engineering. It all worked and well, that's not to say some things were not as good as they could have been given more time. Again to build and show this thing in 32 days its the most incredible part. I can't find my ass with both hands in 32 days!!
Roth was actually instrumental in a backhand way to the start of AEE. Tom's knucklehead which became the Mindbender he bought from Roth. In one of the magazines Tom and Roth faced off, Tom on the Corvair trike, Roth with one of his VW's. It was all a put up for the magazine though the Corvair kicked Roth's ass. Neither one of them cared because in the end each was simply and brilliantly a promoter.
 

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Finch still owns/rides that awesome triple-trike thing he built, and frankly even today I think it's badass. The Big Twin is still cool. With a more modest paint job and the original parts it'd fit right in (but then again, it wasn't supposed to 'fit in').
 

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Roth's trikes were production vehicles and were cool in their own right. Big Twin was purpose built and had superb engineering. It all worked and well, that's not to say some things were not as good as they could have been given more time. Again to build and show this thing in 32 days its the most incredible part. I can't find my ass with both hands in 32 days!!
Roth was actually instrumental in a backhand way to the start of AEE. Tom's knucklehead which became the Mindbender he bought from Roth. In one of the magazines Tom and Roth faced off, Tom on the Corvair trike, Roth with one of his VW's. It was all a put up for the magazine though the Corvair kicked Roth's ass. Neither one of them cared because in the end each was simply and brilliantly a promoter.
Roth (45) and McMullen (Corvair)
 

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