Barber's Best
A virtual tour of the classic motorcycle collection on display at the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum in Leeds, Ala.


1935 Indian Chief

1953 Indian Chief

1935 Indian Chief

Country: United States
Engine: Air-cooled, 42-degree, V-twin four-stroke
Ignition: Battery and coil
Power rating: 40bhp estimated @ 4,000rpm
Bore x stroke: 82.5mm x 112.7mm
Displacement: 1,206cc
Valves: Side
Fuel system: Schebler carburetor
Transmission: 4-speed hand shift
Suspension: Front trailing link with leaf spring, rigid rear
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 480lb
Top speed: 85mph

1953 Indian Chief

The open fender, rigid-frame Indian Chiefs are rarer than the later full-skirted fender models. These rigid-frame Chiefs had superior acceleration than the later models, where relatively light weight and a larger capacity engine were a good combination.

1953 Indian Chief

1953 Indian Chief

1953 Indian Chief

1943 BMW R75

1943 BMW R75

Country: Germany
Engine: Air-cooled transverse twin cylinder four-stroke
Ignition: Magneto
Power rating: 26bhp @4,000rpm
Bore x stroke: 78 x 78mm
Displacement: 745cc
Valves: Overhead, pushrod activated
Fuel system: Single Graetzin Sa 24/1 carburetor
Transmission: 4-speed and reverse, 3-speed and reverse in low range. Shaft final drive with optional sidecar wheel drive
Suspension: Front telescopic forks, rigid rear
Brakes: Front drum, rear and sidecar hydraulic drum
Weight: 1,000lb
Top speed: 56mph

1943 BMW R75

This BMW with Steib sidecar had originally been designed to tow a light gun, but the weight on the tow-bar lifted the front wheel off the ground. Armed with a mobile machine gun, the BMW was a rugged, reliable go-anywhere vehicle. Expensive to build, its cost was double of the Porsche-designed VW (Jeep-like) vehicle. Even so, 16,500 machines were built and remained in service throughout the war. The palm tree insignia indicates this machine was part of Erwin Rommel's Afrika Korps.

1943 BMW R75

1943 BMW R75

1943 BMW R75

1960 Velocette LE

1960 Velocette LE

Country: Great Britain
Engine: Water-cooled, horizontally opposed, twin cylinder 4-stroke
Ignition: Magneto
Power rating: 8bhp @5,000rpm
Bore x stroke: 50 x 49mm
Displacement: 192cc
Valves: Side
Fuel system: Single Amal 12mm carburetor
Transmission: 4-speed, shaft final drive
Suspension: Front telescopic forks, rear twin shock
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 263lb
Top speed: 55mph
Gas mileage: 80-100mpg

1960 Velocette LE

This unique and unconventional machine was widely used by over 50 police departments in England; its uncanny silence enabled the “Bobby” to patrol back streets and alleys at night without disturbing residents. The angular styling was not popular with the buying public and sales declined until production stopped in 1970, when Velocette closed their doors.

 1960 Velocette LE

1960 Velocette LE

1905 Indian

1905 Indian

Engine: Air-cooled, single-cylinder 4-stroke
Ignition: Battery and coil, total loss
Power rating: 2hp
Bore x stroke: 2-9/16in x 3in
Displacement: 260cc
Valves: Atmospheric (automatic) inlet, mechanical exhaust
Fuel system: Hedstrom carburetor
Transmission: Single-speed, all-chain drive
Suspension: Front spring fork, rigid rear
Brakes: Rear coaster
Weight: Approximately 130lb
Top speed: 30-35mph

1905 Indian

Indian was a leader in early motorcycle design, registering many patents on components that are still used today. This 1905 model was called a camelback, due to the shape and location of the gas tank. These machines were extremely well constructed and often over-engineered. Colors available were Indian red, blue, black and green. These early Indians were really the first motorcycles to be mass produced in large numbers.

1905 Indian

1905 Indian

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

Country: Italy
Engine: Air-cooled, single-cylinder 4-stroke
Ignition: Marelli magneto
Bore x stroke: 84mm x 90mm
Displacement: 498cc
Valves: Overhead, pushrod operated
Fuel system: Single Dell'Orto carburetor
Transmission: 4-speed
Suspension: Front girder forks, rear cantilever with coil springs
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 370lb
Top speed: 75mph

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

Designed in the late 1930s, the Gilera Saturno went into production in 1946 and was a success for the company. Very similar to the BSA Gold Star in that it was available in turismo, sport or competition form, and the list of special equipment was impressive. Gilera even made available a motocross version that was successful in national events.

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

1947 Gilera Saturno Turismo

1932 Indian Model 403

1932 Indian Model 403

Engine: Air-cooled, inline 4-cylinder, 4-stroke
Ignition: Magneto
Power rating: 30bhp (estimated)
Bore x stroke: 2-3/4in x 3-1/4in
Displacement: 1,265cc
Valves: Overhead inlet, side exhaust
Fuel system: Schebler carburetor
Transmission: 3-speed, hand shift
Suspension: Front trailing link with leaf spring, rigid rear
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 515lb
Top speed: 75mph

1932 Indian Model 403 engine

Indian Fours were known as the Duesenbergs of motorcycling, and were produced from 1927 to 1942. Smooth and powerful, these machines could be cruised at 70mph for hours. A 1930s ultimate touring machine, it was the Honda Gold Wing of its time.

1932 Indian Model 403 engine

1932 Indian Model 403

1932 Indian Model 403

1934 Velocette GTP

1934 Velocette GTP

Country: Great Britain
Engine: Air-cooled, single-cylinder 2-stroke
Ignition: Battery and coil
Bore x stroke: 63mm x 80mm
Displacement: 249cc
Valves: None
Fuel system: Single Amal carburetor
Transmission: 4-speed
Suspension: Front girder fork, rigid rear
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 248lb
Top speed: 57mph

1934 Velocette GTP

The Velocette GTP was one of the better-designed 2-strokes, with innovative features such as pressure oil feed controlled by the throttle like modern machines, unlike other 2-strokes where the oil and gas had to be mixed. Another feature was coil ignition originally used only on automobiles. Noted for their smooth running and excellent steering, they were produced from 1929 to 1940 virtually unchanged.

1934 Velocette GTP

1934 Velocette GTP

1934 Velocette GTP







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