Many people ask what this bike looked like when I first received it. All I can say is that they come to you in many different degrees of damage, disrepair, neglect, abuse and sometimes, just parts. This 1955 R67/3 was purchased knowing it was rough but, “all there”, so to speak. This is when I learned that “all there” and “all usable” were not the same thing.
The bike was delivered to my brother-in-law’s woodworking shop in Philadelphia to be stored until I could pick it up. I had arranged for my sister to accept delivery with a certified check that I had mailed to her earlier. Upon delivery, she called to inform me that I had made a mistake and that what was delivered was a twisted wreck and a few boxes of parts…so she refused to pay for delivery until I confirmed that the twisted wreck condition was correct. It was!
I like working on the /3 model bikes but as we all know, they are getting very hard to find and this one presented many challenges. Because I had to use many of the parts that were delivered, I was glad that I had a good team working with me. Dave Sterns at Autopia in Buffalo, New York, did yeoman’s work on the sheet metal. He actually cut the entire side off the tank and made a new side. He was about to make a new rear fender when I found one in Poland.
Internal engine parts were broken and damaged and the hunt was on to find new ones. There was not a single part on that bike that I did not touch many times during the first year of restoration.
All and all, the bike came out superbly and was sold to a gentleman in New York City and he rides it daily when the weather is with him.