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What was used as the carburetor in the first Harley Davidson?

Question #40859. Asked by mochyn.
Last updated May 30 2021.

Answer has 17 votes
Currently Best Answer
24 year member
3694 replies avatar

Answer has 17 votes.

Currently voted the best answer.
The 'tomato can' carburetor may or may not be true, depending where you look.

The first Harley-Davidson, built in 1903, used a tomato can for a carburetor.

Hog Heaven (The Story of the Harley-Davidson Empire)
HOG HEAVEN tells the Harley-Davidson story from the first carburetor, built out of an old tomato can, through the birth of the V-Twin Engine. Harley enthusiasts from Jay Leno to "Easy Rider" Peter Fonda share their love of tearing up the open road on the greatest vehicle ever created.

The folklore that surrounds that first engine centers on the carburetor. Legend has it fashioned from a tomato can, and in my heart I'd like to believe that. But given the founders' seriousness and the efforts they put into developing exact drawings and patterns, I can't see them settling for something so primitive. webpage no longer exists

A number of other myths and inconsistencies surround the company's early years. The first carburetor may or may not have been a tomato can. The Harley and Davidson families appear as next-door neighbors in some accounts, even though they lived almost 3 miles apart. The firm's first "factory," a 10- by 15-foot shed in the Davidsons' backyard, was either built by an indulgent father for his sons or usurped by those sons from a resistant parent.

Response last updated by gtho4 on May 30 2021.
Nov 09 2003, 1:03 PM
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