1918 Henderson  Engine no. 7782
Lot 401
1918 Henderson Model H 67ci Four Engine no. 7782
US$ 65,000 - 80,000
£39,000 - 48,000
Lot Details
1918 Henderson Model H 67ci Four
Engine no. 7782
W.G. (Bill) Henderson was the designer and originator of his wonderful four-cylinder motorcycles, which established the style for practically every other similar machine made in America with the design-line traceable through ACE, Excelsior, American X and Indian, with the latter becoming the last maker of Henderson-based 'Fours' on until well into WW2.

The original Henderson Motorcycle Co. of Detroit made their first 'Four' for public sale in 1912, with a 57ci, in-line engine with that favorite of expensive engine makers i.o.e. (inlet-over-exhaust) valves as well as chain-drive. An immediate success, in spite of its high price, its sales provided some capital for further design and development, but Bill Henderson was never to have sufficient capital for what he wanted to do.

This vulnerability put the company at risk from the get-go, and in 1917 it was taken over by Ignaz Schwinn, who moved the company to his Excelsior Motor Mfg. in Chicago, taking on Bill Henderson as a plant superintendent, perhaps the cruelest cut of all since Tom Henderson was also there, and, it is said, paid at a higher grade. Henderson production resumed at Excelsior with the 'Model H', of 67 cubic inch and still with those i.o.e. valves and the distinctive Henderson forks. The 'H' had a relatively brief run, replaced in 1919 by the 'Model K'.

This 1918 'Model H' is understood to been beautifully restored to a high standard of originality from 2006 by the vendor, using a complete machine as a base rather than a collection of components. The entire engine unit build was by a known restorer and the paint job's color was individually matched from samples taken from another 'H' still with original maker's finish. This is a superb example of a rare model and is a real opportunity.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that this motorcycle is titled under its engine number
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