Amelia Island

9 March 2013

Lot 104

1928 Harley-Davidson JD

To be auctioned on Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sold for $34,100

  • Engine no. 28JDL14989


74 cu. in. inlet-over-exhaust V-twin engine with Schebler carburetor, three-speed hand-shift transmission, Meisinger bucket saddle and buddy seat, sprung front forks, hard-tail rear-end, hand-operated front drum brake, and foot-operated rear drum brake. Wheelbase: 59.5 in.

  • Recently completed year-long restoration by American Pride in Fort Worth, Texas
  • Correct colors and equipment for 1928 model; rare buddy seat


Harley-Davidson’s first V-twin was introduced in 1909, but it really hit its stride in 1911 with the addition of a mechanical inlet valve—the so-called overhead “pocket valve”. In 61-cubic inch form, it would remain in production for 20 years. By 1914, the V-twin had gained chain drive and a proper clutch, and a three-speed transmission and kick-start (termed step-starter) followed soon after.

When the 74-cubic inch J model was introduced in 1922, the 22JD featured full electrical equipment, while the FD model was fitted with a magneto. It was capable of 40–60 miles per gallon, and the sidecar model had a plate that was fitted below the cylinder to lower compression.

The year 1924 introduced aluminum pistons and Alemite fittings, which meant a grease gun, which was included, could be used to force lubrication into bushings at 500 psi. The spindly look from the teens disappeared in 1926 with a major redesign, including a bigger, rounded tank and more comfortable handlebars.

A new frame lowered the rider by three inches, which improved the center of gravity and the handling, while a drop-forged crucible lower down protected the engine and stiffened the chassis. Later improvements included a front brake, stronger Sager forks, and full pressure lubrication, before the model was discontinued in 1929.

The bike on offer dates from 1928. The seller found a sound, running bike from California and treated it to a year-long, $40,000 restoration by American Pride Choppers in Fort Worth, Texas. It is finished in the correct cream color with red striping, and it has never been started since the work was completed, though it is said merely to need gasoline for that to be possible.

This superb Harley-Davidson presents its next owner with the opportunity to enjoy a “new” 1928 motorcycle, both to ride and show if he or she so desires. It’s bound to be a head-turner where ever it goes.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alain Squindo


Detroit, Michigan

Alain Squindo joined RM Auctions in 2007, after graduating from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., with a degree in History. R... read more

Alex Classick

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+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Alex Classick joined RM Europe in 2011 as a car specialist, after graduating from Nottingham University with a degree in Business Mana... read more

Alexander Weaver

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+1 310 559 4575
California, USA

Alexander Weaver joined RM Auctions in 2011 as a car specialist, after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born into ... read more

Annette Abaci

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+49 (0) 40 441 95 737
Germany

With post-secondary degrees in Economic Science and Mechanical Engineering, Annette Abaci initially worked part-time at Mercedes-Benz ... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmauctions.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a senior car specialist, after more than a decade in the collector car hobby... read more

Dan Warrener

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+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Possessing a degree in Economics from Brandon University, Dan Warrener spent the initial stages of his career working around the globe... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmauctions.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don Rose joined RM Auctions in 2006, after many years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputatio... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmauctions.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, USA

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord joined RM Auctions in 1998, initially responsible for the transportation and logistics of the company’s auction and restora... read more

Ian Kelleher

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+1 310 559 4575
New York, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College, with a B.A. in Politica... read more

Jack Boxstrom

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+1 818 703 2816
Ontario, Canada

Jack Boxstrom joined RM Auctions in late-1996 to assist with the recently acquired, and subsequently record-breaking, auction in Monte... read more

Max Girardo

mgirardo@rmauctions.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Max Girardo started his career in the vintage automobile industry in 1998, joining Brooks Auctioneers (now Bonhams) as a car specialis... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmauctions.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Auctions, Mike Fairbairn has a longstanding interest in the classic car industry. Graduati... read more

Peter Wallman

pwallman@rmauctions.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007, following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, read more

Rob Myers

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As chairman and founder of the RM Group of Companies, Rob Myers’s entire career has been devoted to the classic car industry. Ro... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmauctions.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, USA

Shelby Myers literally grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to w... read more

Vinnie Mandzak

vmandzak@rmauctions.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, USA

Vinnie Mandzak joined RM Auctions’ California office in 2012 as a car specialist, following more than 30 years’ experience... read more