When banter between friends swirls around twine balls and oily knuckles, eavesdroppers should consider the context before piping in. Jess Wikoff and his friend Chris Demanett were having just such a conversation over breakfast on Saturday morning during last month's Twine Ball Run. Through some not-so-subtle eavesdropping of my own I learned both guys were heading home that morning. With no time to spare before their departure, I wolfed down my biscuits and gravy and met the owner of this WWII era freedom machine on the Osborne county dirt oval. Jess was already packed for the ride, so he was happy to oblige me while I rattled off some quick shots. Sorry ChopCult readers: these are all the photos I could muster. Here's the story on Mr. Wikoff's Oily '42.
With the exception of how rushed things got toward the end, everything on this build went pretty smooth. We finished one week before the Twine Ball Run, and on the shakedown run Monday morning my generator crapped out. Thursday night I turned the armature and replaced the brushes and we were in business. My friends and I pulled out Friday morning and the rebuilt generator didn’t give me any trouble coming or going. An unvented gas cap caused some vapor lock problems during the maiden ride, but nothing we couldn’t fix. I’d like to thank my mom for her support, even thought she nagged me to keep her own bike running the whole time I was building this one. Thanks also to my dad for sharing his years of knowledge, and for making me an engraved shifter knob out of mammoth ivory. Also thanks to Big John for his help on the motor rebuild, and to John Schroeder at Hard To Find Harley Parts on eBay for the best prices on V-Twin parts.
Owner: Jess Wikoff
Builders: Jess and Dennis Wikoff
Motor size, year, model and mods: 1942 H-D FL with replacement cases; original Linkert carb’s going back on after I return from the Twine Ball Run
Frame style, year, model: V-Twin wishbone
Transmission: 1945 H-D 4-speed
Fork model, year, style: V-Twin I-beam
Front wheel rim size, hub style: 1.80” x 21” steel rim with star hub
Rear wheel tire size, hub style: 5.0” x 18” with star hub