FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

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mosehring
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FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by mosehring » Thu Dec 07, 2017 6:55 am


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John Neuenburg
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by John Neuenburg » Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:22 pm

Great price on that 640. Try to find another one. I think they made more than 2,000 for the military though. 4,400? Most of these didn't survive because of being made into race bikes. The 45" Scout was successful in racing. Also many were civilianized into what some think is the best-looking Indian, the 1941 Sport Scout. Only one with rigid frame and the full skirted fenders. Not saying you should do that to THIS one!!!
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41 Indian 640
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Alex Schmidt
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Alex Schmidt » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:07 am

Yes, mine has the highest surviving number 640 4443 then in the same contract were 640 4444, 640 4445 and 640 4446.
Since they started with 640 101 there were at least 4345 produced from 1940 to 1942, then there were some prototypes in 1943, to make a standardised model 643, to try to sell it to the army as an equivalent of the Harley WLA, but that did not work out.

I have seen the bike that's f/s. when it was being restored, here a picture, it's very nice!

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Grtz,

Alex
1910 P&M R.F.C. mtrcycle
1939 White 704 S 5 ton
1940 Matchless G3
1940 Norton Big 4
1941 FordGP #16601
1943 G.E. 75mm Pack How.
1943 Welbike Parascooter
1944 Cushman Parascooter
1944 Cooper Parascooter prototype
1944 DKW RT 125 N.a.

Mark Jesic
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Mark Jesic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:54 am

So guys, what is more desirable, an Indian, or a Harley ? I am on about wartime motorbikes.

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Alex Schmidt
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Alex Schmidt » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:59 am

Very tricky question!! While you can buy a Harley 45 on every streetcorner, you cannot buy an Indian 640 bike (also 45 cubic) readily (in the UK or elsewhere) except the one mentioned above, but the 640's are double the price, if not more, but also much faster and rarer.

Then there are the Indian 741's readily available, but not rare or fast, as it's only 30 cubic inch (500cc)

And there are the 1200 Indians, have one for sale with a sidecar, but also twice as expensive as a WLA.

Then there are also the 1200 H-D's and those are also rare and expensive.

So you have to decide for yourself what you have or want to spend, and what you want to do with the bike....

Cheers,

Alex
Last edited by Alex Schmidt on Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
1910 P&M R.F.C. mtrcycle
1939 White 704 S 5 ton
1940 Matchless G3
1940 Norton Big 4
1941 FordGP #16601
1943 G.E. 75mm Pack How.
1943 Welbike Parascooter
1944 Cushman Parascooter
1944 Cooper Parascooter prototype
1944 DKW RT 125 N.a.


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John Neuenburg
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by John Neuenburg » Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:17 pm

Mark Jesic wrote:
Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:54 am
So guys, what is more desirable, an Indian, or a Harley ? I am on about wartime motorbikes.
Now there is a question! Like Ford jeeps versus Willys? Mustang versus Camaro? Well, no, because there are so few discussions like this. Few 640s come up for sale or are even seen, so as far as choosing one or the other, there are almost no choices to be made. As Alex said, the 741 is a different case, although it's a good option for someone who likes Indians or wants something different than a WLA or WLC. It looks very similar to a 640 but is slower, although it is possible to increase the displacement to get more power. But that can also be done to a 640. In fact a 45 stroked to 57 inch with Bonneville Kit should be faster than a pumped up Chief. Bigger valves per displacement and better intake = more rpm possible. Sorry to digress.....

Alex did you misspeak about the 640 being half as expensive as a Harley? It should be double. Even triple for a serious military motorcycle collector, based simply on rarity. So few change hands that a "market price" is hard to establish. What favors the WLA is it was the primary U.S. motorcycle during WWII and they are in most of the photos.
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42 GPW, Special Air Service replica
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BSA folding bikes

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Alex Schmidt
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Alex Schmidt » Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:28 pm

Sorry, John, something went wrong there, have edited it now!! thanks!

Alex
1910 P&M R.F.C. mtrcycle
1939 White 704 S 5 ton
1940 Matchless G3
1940 Norton Big 4
1941 FordGP #16601
1943 G.E. 75mm Pack How.
1943 Welbike Parascooter
1944 Cushman Parascooter
1944 Cooper Parascooter prototype
1944 DKW RT 125 N.a.

Mark Jesic
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Mark Jesic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:24 pm

Thanks for the posts guys, some really interesting points. Over here in England, you always see the Harley at wartime shows but never an Indian, so obviously extremely rare. I know a guy not far from me who owns THREE wartime Harleys.

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John Neuenburg
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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by John Neuenburg » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:06 pm

Mark Jesic wrote:
Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:24 pm
Thanks for the posts guys, some really interesting points. Over here in England, you always see the Harley at wartime shows but never an Indian, so obviously extremely rare. I know a guy not far from me who owns THREE wartime Harleys.
Tell him to bring them to California, USA in April 2018 for our big (for the U.S.), annual MV event, Camp Petaluma! We moved the Spring meet from Tower Park Resort to Petaluma last April. We are featuring military motorcycles, scooters, and bicycles for the first time in decades. (And military Dodges - I think that's some sort of truck.... :wink: ). A port is nearby. We have tons of tourism possibilities in the San Francisco area and California in general. This is on the edge of the Sonoma County Wine Country with Napa County just to the east. There are buses from Petaluma to and from SF. I know of a good place to store a trailer or individual bikes while the owners are extending their vacations.

I heard that the US Government only bought one 741, and decided to go with a faster 45 inch machine. Apparently a lot of 741s went to New Zealand and I assume Australia.
Military Vehicle Collectors of California

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44 Ford M20
42 GPW, Special Air Service replica
41 Indian 640
BSA folding bikes

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Re: FS 1940 Indian Model 640 Military Bike

Post by Mark Jesic » Mon Dec 11, 2017 4:03 am

I will mention it to him John, cant promise anything though. :D

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