A few more notes on restoring or buying an old Indian Motorcycle.
This is a great time to buy. The baby-boomers are leaving us, and the toys they bought are being resold to new enthusiasts as they fund their retirements. Pick the business, or toy and it is for sale somewhere (A massive amount of deleveraging in the USA!).
Don’t get the biggest bike, get the one that suits your budget and body type. The Chief is big and at 6 foot, I am fine. However, for a smaller person a Scout would be better. If I was going to go on rougher roads, I would look at a Scout. Just a thought.
Look at your budget and where you want to go. Then start tracking the old sale prices. Go to eBay and look at older sales. Ask around.
PARTS and RESTORATIONS:
Here are some places you can go for parts and restoration work:
If you go to Jeff Grigsby at:
They have over 30 fully restored Chiefs for sale.
Jerry Greer has bought out an old supplier (Starklite) and has been making replacement parts for 1953 and earlier Indians. He is also doing restorations now. He is moving to Deadwood SD in March to a new facility. A great guy to talk to. He may have some bikes for sale.
Kiwi Indian 1953 Chief Reproduction – A new bike with a classic style!
You’ll see a lot of Kiwi Indian run by Ross “Kiwi” Tomas and his family.
He makes electric starters if you don’t want to keep kick starting!
Kiwi does restorations, repairs, has parts, has some older bikes for sale, and even makes reproduction engines and older styled Indians!
Ziggy’s Motor Works
The Virtual Indian group:
Buck and his family started restoring old Indian’s in West Virginia:
A guy in Pennsylvania:
A guy in Massillon Ohio:
A guy in Auburn Twp, Ohio:
If you want a project, you will need some mechanical skills, and then you need to decide what you want to build.
Myself, I wanted a bike I could ride, and dump. No show queens in my life, I like my women tough. The same with my bikes. Pretty don’t cut it in my life. So, I bought a 1946 Indian Chief Bobber that was rebuilt and sold by Sammy Pierce in 1971:
The man I bought it from bought it new in 1971 from Sammy Pierce and took it back to Boulder CO. This was his daily driver until he got some health issues. He hated to sell it, but he won’t ride again (sadly, he is in a wheel chair now).
This a great little bike, the Indian 841. Ahead of its time and a rare old bird: