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Motorcycle Picture - 1968 Harley-Davidson Sportster XLCH

Motorcycle Picture of a 1968 Harley-Davidson Sportster XLCH
Here is my 1968 Harley-Davidson Sportster XLCH. I bought the bike stock in early '68 with less than 2,000 miles on it. Bob, the previous owner had ordered it new from Brooklands Motorcycle Sales in Victoria, BC (owned by the well known Reg Shanks, who died in the late 90s) thinking it would be a chick magnet but in his case it didn't work, so he sold it to me for $1650 (he paid $1800) and he became a cop! I had the frame chrome plated (first one in BC). The platers wanted more money for the job, saying they didn't realize how much work was involved but I made them honour their quote - eighty dollars, as I recall. They charged the next guy nearly $200! The photo shows the bike in 1969 (I was 20 at the time), with 5 inch slugs in the forks, a 1959 only exhaust, a 5:00 X 16 tire laced onto the rear hub, and rear fender bobbed and valences cut away. The tail light had an after market "cat face" lens on it, which I thought was cool. Pretty well everything was either chromed or polished - including the bottom end cases. The paint was done by the now famous Rick Brown of Victoria - he charged me $75 for the rear fender and tank. Now the job would run several hundred. Of special note is the rocker covers, which I cut away to resemble knucklehead rockers. The photo proves that I had the idea long before Harley did. The next version featured 10 inch one piece fork tubes, higher handle bars, a bolt on hard tail (chromed of course), custom King and Queen seat done in real leather by the now well known Barry Dale of Victoria, upswept exhausts with fishtail extensions, and a new paint job by Rick Brown - basically tangerine with some small panels in other colours. Oh, also I cut out the panels between the webs in the left side of the front brake, so that they were open. It looked cool but maybe wasn't a good idea. "Walnuts," one guy in the club didn't like me parking in front of his basement shop, because the sun reflected off the chrome and into his shop and he couldn't see! The last change only involved adding forward foot controls and having Walnuts make a ten over narrow springer. Those were the days, man! -- Clayton Restall

Editor's Note: Also check out two tattoos he submitted to the Motorcycle Tattoos Gallery that he's had for over 40 years: [1] and [2]

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