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HD Hardtail frame ID

2325 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  old.wrench

What can I look for on a HD panhead hardtail frame to ID the year?

Also, WHat do you think of this neck, looks unmolested to my inexperienced eyes.



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The neck looks original/unmolested, the tank mount has obviously seen better days. Are the front down tubes straight or curved (wishboned)? Post some more pics, thats the only way any body is going to be able to tell.
It is a wishbone, and I know that the sidecar loops are cut off.


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It could be a 1948 to a 1954 i believe. To get an exact year might be difficult being that some one cut some of the mounts/brackets off. You could look for casting numbers on all the cast pieces and get a better idea that way from some one who might know.
If the frame is from a '52 or newer, it will have a date code stamped on the right side of the top motor mount. Might be really hard to see on a frame with a lot of paint. The number consists of one digit, and one letter. The digit is the year 3=1953 or 1963 and the letter is the month A through L. This is the date the frame was made so one with an early 1953 date code might be a '53 model, while one stamped June or later is probably a frame for the following model year. (production years start about July)
If that toolbox bracket is original to the frame, then it's a '48 to '51.

I don't see the XE-35 casting number on the left side of the neck. Hard to tell if the neck has been modified, but if it's oem the casting number would be there. Someone definately modified the tank mount.

Are the inside of the downtubes fully round or do they have (or had) horn mounts?
Looks like the original dash/tank mount was amputated at some point and then replaced. You can tell by the way its welded on. Like HD48 said, check out the backsides of your front down tubes just below the bend in the "wishbone". Depending if the tubes are round or flattened on the backside will give you an indication to the year. If there are horn mounts welded to the tubes at that point will give you more info. The shape of the horn mounts (rectangular with square corners or rectangular with rounded corners) and the size of the tapped holes (either 10-24tpi or 12-24tpi) will help pinpoint the year. What it look like?

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