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1979 Harley davidson electra glide

This is a discussion on 1979 Harley davidson electra glide within the Harley Davidson forums, part of the Manufacturers category; This bike is the bike that made me want to ride from the beginning. My grandpa owned it from brand ...


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Old 02-28-2007   #1
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

This bike is the bike that made me want to ride from the beginning. My grandpa owned it from brand new and he and myself are considering selling/trading it because it is becoming more of a project than we can handle and a new Harley for me to start with sounds like a decent idea. I was wondering what others think about this decision, should i sell or not? it would defiantly help with the cost of a new bike. and if we sell is anyone out there looking to own a great classic bike, it runs well and has been my favored mode of transportation for the last 3 years.
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Old 02-28-2007   #2
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

Mornin' Willmo88 and welcome to the Forum! :D

Yikes? I'm probably the worst guy you could talk to in here (except maybe PintSlayer?! :Dhttp://www.motorcycleforum.com/images/icons/icon14.gif) about this particular sled but…. Of the 12+/- Harleys I’ve owned over the years, my past 1979 FLH-80 Electra-Glide ‘Classic’ was the one H-D I absolutely would never EVER care to have back again! Gotta’ say truthfully that old scoot and myself just didn’t get along! Again, I’m one of those (?) ‘odd-ball’ people out there that really had pretty good luck with Harleys over the years. Be they Shovels, old Cast-Iron Sporties, or the later (with SOME gripes!) Evo (Blockhead) and Fathead TC. But that old (AMF Worker Sabotaged!) Higher-Comp first model 1340’s Shovel I had was like Oil and Water – we just didn’t click!

However, in your case you got something I didn’t: that ride IS practically ‘family’. And that factor is like all the difference in the world. I’m saying if there’s anyway you can swing it, find some way (some how) to hang onto that ride… and keep it safe (to pass on to future generations). That’s my take on it, for what it’s worth….. Nuff’ said.

LRG
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Old 03-01-2007   #3
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

Yea and ideally i would love to keep it and get another but I dont see that as an option:( thank you tho for your thoughts
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Old 03-02-2007   #4
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

Check and see what your local dealer will give you for trade-in. That might help you find a starting point for deciding whether or not to sell.
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Old 03-02-2007   #5
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

Trade in is roughly 3,500 to 4,000. retail (if i were to sell private) could be between 4,500 to 6,500.
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Old 03-03-2007   #6
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

All I can add is some 12 years ago or so I lost (had to get my family bills paid...) my (first) 1981 FXS-80 Low-Rider Shovelhead, the first H-D I ever had brand new (in 1983) and a ride that I surely thought I would have forever. It wasn't the best bike I ever owned but I trusted that scoot... to go out for a day's ride OR to take cross-country. I really understood that bike and I swear we had (if such a thing IS even possible?!) an 'understanding'. Can't say I've felt that comfortable with any machine since (and they've let me down accordingly). All I'm sayin' is sometimes you gotta' step back and look at the big picture (between the lines): are these just 'things', just lumps of money that come and go from out respective lives?! Or is there something more? A spirit perhaps?! One that can be good or evil, but perhaps something more then just a collection of parts? I dunno... but I choose to play it safe (with most things) and just give em' all a benefit of a doubt.

Nuff' said,
LRG

Yea and ideally i would love to keep it and get another but I dont see that as an option:( thank you tho for your thoughts
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Old 03-03-2007   #7
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

Check and see what your local dealer will give you for trade-in. That might help you find a starting point for deciding whether or not to sell.

Most dealers wouldn't touch it with a ten-meter cattle prod. If they do take it, they'll hose you on the value. They don't even like Shovels on the property, and they're starting to turn their backs on some of the earlier Evos.

Keep the thing. Make a project out of restoring it to showroom condition. Enter it in some shows or something. As much as I despise Harleys, I'd hate to see you sell Grampa's bike. Not many people can fire up a bike that's been in the family for three generations for a Sunday ride in spring to smell the lilacs and hot leaking 50-weight!:D
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Old 03-04-2007   #8
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Default 1979 Harley davidson electra glide

hey thanks for the reply. That exact reason is why i want to keep it so badly
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Old 03-10-2011   #9
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Then you should keep it.

- Musing About Old Harley-Davidsons -

The old shovelheads have a certain panache to them. Also, there is a certain knack to riding them and learning all the various idiosyncrasies they have. From about 1975 to 1979 were the darkest years for HD ('77 was the worst) shortly thereafter they improved the product dramatically with the introduction of the Blockhead (evolution engine), it was a success story from then on. Most of the Shovels at this point aren't stock, back in the day you were lucky if you could make 20K miles before something really went wrong! When rebuilding most people went for improved aftermarket parts, pistons, rings, valves and the like. Contrary to what people might tell you, they weren't all that easy to work on. Easy to disassemble, yes, but hard to reassemble in a manner that would provide good service again. It required fastidious attention to detail! Torquing bolts to factory specs, making all the mating surfaces antiseptically clean before reassebmly, fitting gaskets just the right way, using just the right gasket sealant in just the right amounts were very important!

By the way, Harley-Davidson provided the new owner a liberal 30 day/3000 mile warranty back then! Talk about a lack of faith in your products! In mid 1978 as I remember they increased it to a year/12K miles.

Most of the issues you get on a shovelhead Harley stem from vibration induced failures, at some speeds the engines would vibrate severely, so the secret was to run the engine where it ran fairly smoothly. On my old Electra-Glide FLH, that worked out to 69 MPH with stock gearing, on the Superglide FX (no E, mine only had a kicker - which was it best feature) it seemed happiest about 72 MPH. At that time the national speed limit was 55, and both bikes would vibrate ones gonads off at that speed, so I changed the rear sprocket to gear the bikes down, then the Electra was happy at 57 and the Super at 59. You had a few MPH leeway. Once you had that aspect of being an Electra Glide pilot down you could cross continents in regal luxury (right) with no mechanical issues to speak of.

Lets see a photo of your ' Glide!

- John.

Last edited by John; 03-10-2011 at 12:34 PM.
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