1942 Harley Davidson XA — Customized/Civilianized
This is an original, iconic Harley Davidson XA Motorcycle that was engineered during WWII to compete with the opposed twin, shaft drive BMW that was performing exceptionally well in the African desert.
This original Harley Davidson motorcycle was found in a falling down shed on the father-in-laws’ farm in Iowa. It was in rough shape at the time as shown in the pictures. It was brought home to Colorado and had Browns American Cycle do the civilian type restoration that they finished in 1995. There was no interest at the time in restoring it back to its original condition as a military motorcycle. It was featured in the American Iron Magazine July issue 1996 titled Sahara Sled. New sheet metal was added except for the tank and some new accessories were added to further civilianize the bike.
The engine, tranny and all running gear were serviced and freshened during the restoration. They are original. The restoration was done in 1995 and the motorcycle was started and test-driven. The fuel tanks were drained and the bike has been on display in a bike shop for a few years as well as a museum for a while. The rest of the time the XA has occupied its place of honor in the owner’s home in his Harley bar area. The frame, motor, transmission, crash bars, front springer, front end, handlebars, brake and clutch levers, rear suspension, shift levers, footpegs, kickstand, petcock, generator, and fuel tanks all appear to be original.
It does retain its original Harley military motorcycle blackout ignition switch.
Less than a mile since the restoration, Odometer is not accurate.
The bike was taken down to the frame and painted. It is in good condition with a few minor scratches from being moved over the years. Frame and crash bars have a few paint nicks and small scratches, and the front and rear fender tips as well, nothing major very minor. No dents, cracks, or rust are visible.
It is believed the only sheet metal that is original is the fuel tank. The fenders are not original and were purchased as aftermarket items. All the sheet metal is in good condition.
Not much, just the luggage rack, rear light, headlight, mufflers, front fender emblem, gas caps, front Springer springs, and dash, none of which are original but are in good condition.
The motorcycle is mechanically sound and built to ride. It has not been serviced or run for twenty years. Gas was drained and the engine has been kicked through regularly, and proper attention is needed to put it on the road. The current owner did see it run and drive when it was picked up after the restoration. Has not been ridden since. They did go through the motor, trans, clutch and brakes. NOS gaskets, valve guides, tappets, floorboards and brackets, and carb kits were installed. Brake shoes were relined as well. The current 6-volt battery is dead and needs to be replaced.
Wheels & Tires
Both front and back tires purchased new in 1995, no miles, 5.00-16S, has light checkering on the white sidewalls. Rims were chromed with new spokes installed. It’s believed the wheel hubs, axles, and brakes to be original.
Clear Colorado title, as a 1942 Harley Davidson Motorcycle. VIN XA1866.
Engine # 42XA1866.
Frame # None
Belly# 24550 42 only one and is a casting number
VIN # XA1866
Valuation Resource Guide
Customized/civilianized motorcycles are not directly rated by NADA.
1942 XA as a 1 is $31,475
Some police-style lights were added to the front, it was the bike shop’s idea since the owner was in Law Enforcement. He does have the original military operation and maintenance manual (TM10-1293). These will go with the sale of the motorcycle.