Not all Hds are made in USA.

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by monsterman, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. monsterman

    monsterman Ol'Timer

    Yes its true 95%+ of Harley davidsons are made and assembled in The USA ..Ok parts are sourced from all over the world , Germany(Vrod Engines) china , Taiwan , Italy etc but where can you you can buy HDs that do not have made in USA stickers on them ?

    I know the answer... no its not Thailand yet ..thats on the cards to gain ASEAN benefits ..but perhaps the credit crunch will delay it again.

    OK guys guess ..I will tell the answer soon.
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  3. Muzz

    Muzz Ol'Timer

    I think I read some where that an American - Sino deal was imminent for HD. As the Chinese were going to fund the deal, they wanted to rebrand the make as CHARLIE DAVIDSON ( An American term used "Charlie" when fighting the Communists in South East Asia). I beleive the talks may have stalled on this point. The Chinese it seems do have a sense of humour after all....
  4. monsterman

    monsterman Ol'Timer

    That may be so but you canalready go to a certain country and its neighbours and buy HDs made in a factory in that country which have badges saying made in XXXXXXXXXX ...not USA.
  5. pseacraft

    pseacraft Ol'Timer I should visit my friends in Indonesia soon? Like I would go there for HD..the ladies and food are much better! :twisted:
  6. KZ

    KZ Ol'Timer

    Come on, let the cat out of the bag, as we say in Albania. Which lucky country is it? Or do you want to take bets? I'd say Malaysia. But as far as I know HD maybe it's Taiwan. Second guess would be India, huge market, some big money there. Then we could buy a "Harley CHTSF Slum Dog", no cowhide seats available. And maybe a Buell with a high-octane Enfield engine. Since they changed "Hollywood" to "Bollywood", maybe "Barley Davidson" would be a good nomer. New models to be introduced would be "Chrome Boner", "Kama Sutra Midnight Special", "Fat Buddha", roadside service included, there'll always be a hundred kids to push you to the next village when the bike broke down.
    Ain't I funny this morning.
    But an icon like HD that's more american than John Wayne or Arnold Schwarzenegger now made in an asian country, that's inspiring...
  7. monsterman

    monsterman Ol'Timer

  8. mikerust

    mikerust Ol'Timer

    let us not forget that Brazil is America. Just south.

    They also make VW trucks, unique VW cars, unique Fiat cars, make aircraft to challenge Lear and have a thriving arms industry.

    Nothing wrong with Made In Brazil.

    Please imagine a thong clad Maid In Brazil as may not be the appropirate forum to post such pictures.
  9. HIKO

    HIKO Ol'Timer


    You maybe forget that Harleys were made in Japan up to 1958 and still sold in the 60:s They were made by the Sankyo Factory on behalf of the Rikuo family who used to be the Harley importers for Harley in Japan. RIKUO was made as Harley Davidson of Japan in 1935.

    For the first time , their parts were imported from USA.
    Later,Sankyo made them in Japan. including all the parts.
    Rikuo Motorcycle Co. was one of the first Motorcycle Manufacturer in Japan. In the early 1930s the made them under license and name of Harley Davidson using their tooling, and then under the name Rikuo until 1958 They got the tools to manufacture the Harley just before the second WW. Harley-Davidson, with the help by an American Japan based man Alfred Rich Child, shipped tools and personnel to Japan in the mid-1930s to build HD VL flathead (sidevalve) motorcycles.

    When Harley-Davidson was about to produce the new EL OHV Knucklehead design, they wanted that the Japanese factory buy a license to produce the EL as well. However Sankyo, Rikuo's parent company, was reluctant to produce the new vehicles and refused to make this commitment. Anyhow they later did make a copy of it which only came to the prototype status.

    At the same time, Japan’s government was becoming increasingly militaristic leading up to World War II and eventually suggested that Harley-Davidson employees, including Mr. Child, leave the country. The motorcycle continued production under the name of Rikuo, meaning “Land King” or “Continent King.” or "Road King"

    Harley Davidson 1200cc model was named VFE or VLE. V was for the Far East model. The 750 Type was called R or RQ.
    Sidecar combinations called Type 97 were produced for military work in the Philippines and Manchuria during the Second World War. Solo machines were supplied to civilian police forces, for example for Osaka in the 1950s.[1]

    After the war the remaining factory continued producing the 750cc (45 cubic inch) RQ and 1200cc (74 cubic inch) VLE models still using the old flat head, total-loss lubrication design. The 750 gained a telescopic front suspension and the 1200 model retained springer forks. All of the new motorcycles were made with hard tail rear ends. In 1950 and 1951, the plant produced about fifty 45 cubic inch motors per month and thirty 74's with sidecars. By August 1952 production was estimated at approximately seventy 45's a month while the 74's stayed about the same. The 45 and 74 models are near exact copies of the 1934 Harley Davidson. An OHV version was prototyped, but never produced.

    The factory began to use the "Tele-Glide" type front suspension in or around 1950 on the 750cc units, but while updating the sheet metal on the VL type, retained the "Springer" type front suspension on those units.

    Therefore, the 1950s 750s are basically the Harley-Davidson 45 RL of the early 1930s, and the 1950s 1200s are the Harley-Davidson VL of the same era, but both with updated sheet metal (the updated front fork of the RQ/RT notwithstanding).

    During the second WW the Rikuo Factory was turned into manufacturing military equipments and the factory was bombed in the Hiroshima bombings. The factory went bankrupt in 1960 because of no demand for big motorbikes in Japan after the war and even the new factory being to old.

    Harley-Davidson themselves did not publicize this Japanese connection. This, because effectively, it could be that the Japanese were helped in mass-production techniques by the introduction of this factory into Japan just prior to the Second World War.

    If you want to know more you can visit my Finnish friend and former employee Riku:s (yes that is his real nick name) home page. He is about one of the only one who has one Rikuo , which he bought from East Russia in the 1990:s.

    And then some pictures:





  10. monsterman

    monsterman Ol'Timer

    Thanks Hiko that is very interesting and useful info...sure to confound some of my HD c friends.
  11. penetrator

    penetrator Ol'Timer

    Don't forget Harleys were also made in Italy by Aermacchi, but not the big soft V twins, they made re-badged Aermacchi's


    And also two strokes.



    They also made a pretty decent 250 and 350 2 stroke watercooled twin racer that won both world championship classes back in the 70's until the Italian side of the company was sold to Cagiva.

  12. KZ

    KZ Ol'Timer

    Maybe it should be added that Harley did not design any of the single cylinder bikes, two- or four strokes. Since they couldn't come up with a reliable small bike on their own they rebadged imported european bikes.

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