1939 Harley Davidson Knucklehead Custom

owner: Bruce Ankarberg

I am the third owner in the last 30 years. A local patch holder originally built the Knucklehead. He built the bike for an attractive woman who lived here in Portland. She owned and rode the Knucklehead for 20+ years. She sold the Knucklehead to a mutual friend of ours. The motor broke twice, and then I bought it in December 2003.

I am most fortunate to have a close friend, Gary, who is a highly skilled motorcycle mechanic. I am also blessed with a son, Eric, who inherited his great grandfather’s mechanical skills. Eric also shows a bit of genius in regard to motorcycles. Gary and Eric rebuilt the motor and changed the bars and tank. The

Knucklehead has a FL swing arm, frame with a weld-on hard tail. The front end is a Harley wide glide. The triple trees were made by a friend, Wes.I have to confess that I am the least qualified character in this book. I posses mechanical skills, but I have chosen not to be a mechanic. I do maintenance and minor repairs to my motorcycles. My expression is in the form of admiration of the skills necessary to compose a functioning piece of mechanical art and riding the hell out of it. I like stuff that people don’t want anymore.

An interesting fable about the Knucklehead: whenever it crosses the Columbia River into the state of Washington the bike breaks down.