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Barn Find Wannabe: 1979 Harley-Davidson

Barn Bike Wannabe

Among other good reasons to buy it, the seller states that this bike “looks like it’s been in a barn for 80 years”. Obliviously, it hasn’t, but maybe this is the way to go if you actually want to ride your motorcycle. It features Harley’s famous “Shovelhead” V-Twin and many custom touches that make it look much older than it really is. The bike is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and is listed here on eBay with about a day of bidding left. What do you think – would you be proud to cruise this creation or would you feel a bit wannabe?


  1. Avatar photo Joe

    Not a motorcycle guy, but I do like the way this one looks.

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  2. Avatar photo van

    It’s great
    Can’t imagine cleaning all the chrome on a Harley
    This would seriously make me want one

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  3. Avatar photo skloon

    Woah check out that pantina !!

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  4. Avatar photo Patrick

    Surprised to see that the ebay censors have not had their way with the final sentence of his listing! Slipped that one under the radar…….

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  5. Avatar photo Gary I

    I would ride it like it is. You come to appreciate a rider when you finally get that nice chromed out Harley you always wanted. I have a 2006 Heritage Deluxe with much added chrome that is showroom fresh, never sees rain and I have to clean it after every ride. I miss my flat black Triumph chopper to beat around on without worries.

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  6. Avatar photo Irish Bill

    This bike was built during the AMF years when Harley was owned by AMF. Not their finest hours. Owned a 1976 Harley bought brand new. The mufflers would fall off, etc. sold it before it had 3,000 miles

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    • Avatar photo DRV

      Good call Bill. AMF almost killed them.

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    • Avatar photo John Deebank

      I bought the next yr model out the show room. Named “Lowrider” 1st. semi-custom bike sold by Harley. Both elec. start and kick. Loved it.

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    • Avatar photo John Deebank

      I bought the 1st semi-custom 1977 Lowrider FXS designed by Harley Grandson Willie G. Absolutely loved it. Yes, too bad it had AMF smell on it. That Lowrider was a money maker for them which led to many, many semi-custom bikes. 1978 came with belt drive, raked front forks, electronic ignition etc. Mine had kick start and electric start.

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  7. Avatar photo MountainMan

    My kind of bike. My current motorcycle looks very similar….if I get close enough to it that I could clean it I just get on it and ride instead. Lots more motorcycle owners than there are riders

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  8. Avatar photo gerry Member

    My most recent Shovel was a 1979 and my previous one was a 1981 people have to remember that once a bike is this old it most likely has any questionable build quality items replaced or rebuilt over this amount of time.
    I’d ride it with no worries easier to get parts for than anything Japanese I own from the same era.
    And I’m the one who gets told I should wash my bike all the time I’d rather have a dirty bike that runs than a shiny one that don’t

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  9. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    Truth be known, AMF Harley’s are in big demand now. While it’s true, AMF Harley’s weren’t the best in build quality, I think the bigger problem was the world of bikes was changing at a horrific rate, Harley was still using a design from the 40’s.( and still do) I’ve had many bikes, including a ’85 FXRT. It was the coolest bike I ever owned, but no where near the most dependable. That award goes to my Honda GoldWing. One must be careful when when bashing a Harley, as people who would never own an Asian bike, think their Harley is the best, and one can’t condemn them for that, but the old joke was, when a bunch of people with Harley’s went on a ride, someone was always needed to bring the chase pickup, as at least one would break down, and if it didn’t start on the 2nd kick, you were in trouble ( as your girlfriend stood there with her arms folded and gas dripping on the ground)
    Personally, I feel, patina is ok for Model A or some forgotten classic car or truck, but when it comes to bikes, they need to be spotless, ( mine always were) and I think this bike looks terrible. I hope someone buys this and cleans it up, as it is a rare piece, and with aftermarket parts, it can be made to be a dependable scoot, and the biggest plus, is it’s chain drive ( never trusted the belt, and not because they break and fly off, which is rare, but if you DO have to change a belt, it’s a big deal, and pretty much puts your bike on “the pickup”, while a chain drive, you can be on your way in 5 minutes) Don’t get me wrong, I love bikes, all bikes, but I would never own another Harley. My next bike is going to be a “Limey”, not for it’s reliability, but for it’s cool factor.

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  10. Avatar photo krash

    fun looking ride…less time polishin’, more time ridin’.

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  11. Avatar photo MF

    My first Harley was during the AMF years, I swore I would never own another harley. after 2 jap bikes and they were great bikes I’m back to a Harley again, 94 Ultra shriner……..you have to admit NOTHING SOUNDS LIKE A HARLEY I love it!!

    Like 1
  12. Avatar photo Bruce E

    I own a 73 FX (bowling pin bike..) shovelhead, 16000 miles on it, never had any problems with it, started on the 2nd kick about every time. I just picked up a Norton 850 barn find that had a 35 year slumber ! Not sure what to do with that one yet, maybe get some pics and send them in and see what everybody thinks.

    Like 0

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