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  1. #1

    Default 74 ironhead looking for ideas

    Hey All,

    I am new to chopcult. I have been checking it out for a bit now but I just signed up. I recently picked up a 74 ironhead (this is my first harley). The guy before me was going to build a board tracker style bike so it has two 21inch wheels on it. I am not really sure what I want to do with it yet. I am not a well funded builder but I am willing to throw some cash into it.

    Here are some of the things I was thinking about doing if I keep the 21 inch rear rim. I would wan to do a really low hardtail frame and get the riders seated position below the top of the back wheel. I would also want to do a cook customs front end girder but I haven't the slightest idea how to go about that.

    I was also thinking about going to a smaller back rim and doing a king and queen seat on a hardtail.

    Let me know what you guys think. Pics are always a plus.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
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    Don't do anything! just ride for at least the whole summer.
    Ok maybe get a smaller back wheel but that's it! just get it running and ride then after that ride some more.

  3. #3
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    Looks like a moped with a Sportster motor.

  4. #4
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    im doing my first project build also,its a 74 iron head......im more a fan of the old school look,so a 16 or 18 rear n absolutly king n queen if your not going solo..only reason i didnt stay king n queen is cause i found a really rad tall back rest chopper seat....so,im going old school choppa, with a few new school touches....but u got a really nice looking starter,,,and yea,only way to keep that rear wheel...u gotta go with low,low seating...but hey,its ur sled,fk tha rest of us that dont prefer it!!! good luck, man!

  5. #5
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    Brandon is right! First do nothing and do a full service on the bike. Fluids, valves, ignition and get it runing this summer. Go to as many bike meetings and parties you can and look at other bikes to get a feel for what looks good. I could think that keeping an Ironhead running will eat up a lot of your money.

    This is my personal opinion: There are certain aesthetic rules that make a bike look good. Mostly propotions of parts, surfaces and colors. Most important is for me that every single part looks good to me and bike is assembled nice and clean.

    And: form follows function. The question is: What are you using your bike for? Riding to work, going on rides with your girl, or doing camping trips?

    Please do not cut it and make it a rigid. There are already so many and a swingarm bike can look so good!

    Please remember that you are now riding a bike thats engine was designed 60 years ago and is now 38 years old. Do not trash it on the highway! Do not rev your engine like you reved your jap multi.You would not sent your grandma on a marathon, wouldn`t you? I do not want to follow another my Ironhead engine blew up thread.
    Good luck and have fun! Georg


    This is my latest project, struts will not stay on. Shocks are to the powder coater.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails neu 003.jpg  

  6. #6
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    I would swap to a 16 or 18 rear before I even invited anyone over to see it or post pics on ChopCult. Then I would just start riding it to get you and the bike aquainted ( it's going to be a slow process, Ironheads are shy) and to work out the mechanical bugs. That should keep you busy awhile. It has potential and I agree about not hardtailing it. I would leave the forks like they are. Oh and be patient !!


    Edit....18 rear not 19.

    Garsh Nosebleed, I'm blushing ! Haha!!
    Last edited by xllance; 06-12-2013 at 6:59 PM.

  7. #7
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    Welcome to the Cult and Harley ownership. Now, I preface my comments by saying that I don't own an Ironhead but I like em and know a bunch of guys who do own them.

    Looking at your pic and reading your ideas, my thoughts are this: I agree with Lance and the other guys and I happen to know that Lance is among the most "in the know" Ironhead guys on ChopCult (and a dashing, suave and charming gentleman as well). Learning to live with an Ironhead takes some time and you are going to learn a lot about your bike through trial and error.

    As for the board tracker look, I don't see it happening with that frame and the rake on it. Board tracker bikes have very little rake and making that frame work with that style might be more trouble than it's worth. I would definitely get that thing up and running, make sure the tires are good, maybe slap some paint on it and start riding. Things are going to go out and need replacing, probably almost immediately so don't blow all of your money on parts that aren't essential just yet.

    And finally, yes, please ditch the 21 inch wheel in the rear. If you go board tracker with it youre looking at a $10,000 investment by the time you get the fab work done, new springer and everything else. Probably not going to happen overnight unless youve got plenty of cash. In the meantime, throw a 16 inch rear on there and enjoy.

  8. #8

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    Thanks for the input guys. I should probably have mentioned that the bike does run. It needs some fine tuning on the carb. Im sure like you guys said things will go out and I will have to replace them but the PO was a good mechanic (crappy fabricator though) and Im pretty confident the motor is in decent shape.

    I agree that to do the board tracker look it would take to much money so I will prob swap out the back wheel for hopefully a 19 inch. I have always like the cafe style look so I might go that route.

    The front end is from a 2005 sporty. The spacers on the triple tree are off to so the thing wobbles like crazy so I will probably be replacing the front end. Was thinking about doing a springer front end.

    Thanks for the help guys and Lance Ill be sure to post way more pics of its current set up for you.

  9. #9
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    Get a shop manual and the ironhead manual video from lowbrow. It does wonders especially if its your first Harley. You'd be suprised what you can do on your own. And the guys here will help too.

    As for the bike, small rear wheel. That 21 will be catchin all the grooves!!! Ride it for a while, tune it. Then CTFS!!!

  10. #10
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    well this dude gets my vote for badest fucking ironhead ive ever seen. DO THAT.

     photo KillerIronheadBobber_zps930c5a62.jpg

  11. #11

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    ill take the 21 rear off your hands!

  12. #12
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    Default mine

    my 76
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 20130320_164646.jpg  

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by shovelpan69 View Post

     photo KillerIronheadBobber_zps930c5a62.jpg
    That was my desktop while i was building mine. So badass.

  14. #14
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    slam the front and blast some clip-ons and that shit would be awesome.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by brooklynbomber View Post
    Looks like a moped with a Sportster motor.
    it really does.

  16. #16

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    Does anyone know the stretch and drop of that black ironhead 2 posts up.

    And yes I agree it does look like a moped Perhaps Ill make it a pedal start.

  17. #17
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    I love Ironheads-my first Harley was an 85 ironhead. Incredibly difficult to find parts for since 85 was also the year they dropped the ironheads. My best advice would be to ride it, and see what you and the bike would like. After you put some miles on it, it will tell you what it wants. I dig that front wheel. If you want to drop the ass end just get some burly's for it so you still have shocks in the rear until you decide which way you want to go.
    I would get a smaller rear wheel and get some short shocks and ride the shit out of it. Then go from there-good luck!

  18. #18
    seatraveler
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    I like the Jap style swingarm look! Looks badass and is more original then a k and q seat chop. Pretty Dope looking!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 79.jpg  

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by seatraveler View Post
    I like the Jap style swingarm look! Looks badass and is more original then a k and q seat chop. Pretty Dope looking!
    Are you talking about your thumbnail? Thats a rigid shovel ...?



    edit: but I agree, the jap style swingarms rule. Those dudes putting out those " rat friends " stickers ride some awesome swingarm shovels and pans
    Last edited by coldfeet; 06-20-2013 at 12:01 AM.

  20. #20
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    ah welcome to the world of vibes man,,,seriously 18 in the rear,not 19,get it running sound ,after factory service manual,get used to dissapering oil from tank,(these are common to leak past the check valve in oil pump so don't freak ,when it is 2 quarts low a day after you filled it)once you get used to it,s peculiarities you will have a fun ride as long as you remember these where race bikes ,,,,

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