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Indian 741B Motorcycle used by US in WW2?


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#1 Don

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Posted 04 January 2002 - 07:28 PM

I have recently spent a great deal of time, money and effort restoring an Indian 741B, WW2 era military motorcycle(manufactured in Springfield, Mass about 1941).
Most of the bikes used by the U.S.military were
Harlies.
I am trying to prove that the U.S.Military ctually used at least a few of this model Indian, if only for a while.
If anyone has any WW2 photos, particularly of G.I.'s on this model Indian or other documentation that I can purchase or pay to copy,
or personal recollections to help me prove they did I'd be greatly apreciative of them.
I do know they made over 32,000 of them and that many went to the British, New Zealanders, Australians, Russians and possibly the French.
Please email me if you have any info.or suggestions.
Thanks in advance,
Don Snowdon

#2 C.Evans

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Posted 04 January 2002 - 08:10 PM

Hello Don and welcome aboard.

I have seen photos of British Dispatch Riders before, but I havent a clue in what books they were in. I have seen documentary footage of them riding motorcycles in England and in Italy, but I cannot recall what type of chopper they were riding.
Lost are only those, who abandon themselves) Hans-Ulrich Rudel.
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#3 Keystone Two-Eight

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 10:26 AM

Nothing to prove, it's a well known fact.
Indian Motorcycles on wikipedia.

World War II Posted Image Posted Image
1939 Indian Dispatch Tow, 3-wheeler


Posted Image Posted Image
1942 Indian Scout 500, the 741, used by the US Army


Chiefs, Scouts, and Junior Scouts were all used for various purposes by the United States Army in World War II. However, none of these could unseat the Harley-Davidson WLA as the motorcycle mainly used by the Army. The early version was based on the 750cc Scout (45 cu.in.) 640 compared directly with Harley's offer, the WLA, but was either too expensive or heavy, or a combination of both. Indians eventual offer, the 500cc (30.5 cu.in.) 741, was underpowered and could not compete with the WLA. Indian also offered a version based on the 1200cc (74 cu.in.) Chief, the 344. Approximately 1,000 experimental versions mounting the 750cc motor sideways and utilising shaft drive, as on a modern Moto Guzzi, the 841, was also tried."


Videos of Indians during WWII


Harleys were the motorcycle of choice, but Indians were used. Google is your friend!
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#4 Keystone Two-Eight

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 10:56 AM

Wow, just looked at the date this was initially posted!
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Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow"
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#5 Biak

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 02:15 PM

Wow, just looked at the date this was initially posted!


History never dies, it just fades away for a while. Great info on the Indian.

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#6 brndirt1

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 03:06 PM

I used to have a link to the motorcycles the Army was testing out before we got into the war. It was in an old Popular Mechanics magazine I think. It showed both the horizontal twin of the H-D people with a shaft drive copying the BMW, and the Indian with a V-twin mounted with the cylinders protruding out at 45 degree angles like a Moto-Guzzi. I don't remember if it was shaft or chain drive, but both it and the Harley had incorporated left-hand clutches and left-foot shifts into their designs. A first from both companies.

I'll look around and see if I can chase down the link for you guys if you are interested. I too like seeing old threads that have new information and pics in them. Thanks for posting them "Keystone"!
Happy Trails,
Clint.




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