1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127

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Lot 41
1941 Indian 741B Scout
Engine no. GDA2127
Sold for US$ 10,120 inc. premium

Lot Details
1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127 1941 Indian 741B Scout Engine no. GDA2127
1941 Indian 741B Scout
Engine no. GDA2127
• Ex-army specification model
• Restored to civilian colors

When Indian went to war after Pearl Harbor, three different models were conscripted, and the factory even developed a completely new machine to do battle with Field Marshall Rommel and his vaunted Afrika Korps. While rival Harley-Davidson got the bigger military contracts, Indian still contributed 40,000-plus machines to the war effort, supplying bikes to U.S. armed services and those of our allies. Even the big Chief 74 pulled duty, renamed 340B in military parlance, most fitted with sidecars. It's said that France ordered 5,000 340B outfits before the country's fall, rumor insisting that many are still resting in their crates on the ocean floor, victims of U-boat torpedoes. The 640B, a militarized Sport Scout, was produced in smaller numbers, perhaps 2,500 units. In answer to a government request to supply a motorcycle that could stand up to the chain-eating sands of North Africa, Indian developed and built 1,000 Model 841s, a 750cc transverse V-twin design with shaft final drive. Rommel's withdrawal from that theater and the amazing capabilities of the Jeep meant that the 841s remained in a warehouse, many sold off after the war for $500 apiece.

By far the most prolific of war Indians was the 741B Scout, some 35,000 of which saw service. Power came from a 30.50ci (500cc) V-twin repurposed from the pre-war Junior Scout. To cope with the low-octane gasoline often found in war zones, compression ratio was lowered, which also aided reliability and made kickstarting easier – never a bad thing when someone is shooting at you. A huge canister-style air filter kept dirt and debris out of engine's innards. Chassis-wise, longer forks increased ground clearance (and became popular with chopper builders after the war) and provided a location for a gun scabbard and ammo box. Fenders were simple flat blades, mounted with enough wheel clearance to prevent packed mud from halting forward progress. Leather saddlebags were hung from a heavy-duty rear carrier, with capacity on top for even more kit. A perforated shield was fitted to the engine's right side to cut down on radio interference from the ignition system.

This 500cc Scout is ex-Army spec. which at some stage went through a 'civilianization' restoration process, and very nice it is too. Going from 'army' or olive drab to its current 'semi-metallic Las Vegas' green, complete with large gold 'Indian' script on the tank was a masterful stroke. Note that all that could be painted in olive drab is now in metallic green, including the wheel rims and front girder fork spring. The tan leather saddle, chrome horn and headlamp shell and flat silver cases contrast superbly as you would expect.

Little is known of this bike's story other than the fact that it hales from New Zealand. Reportedly it starts and runs well and has reliably toured NZ's North Island extensively.

Footnotes

  • Please note, this motorcycle is titled under VIN plate no. 7A891011101739386. As with all Lots in the Sale, this Lot is sold 'as is/where is' and Bidders must satisfy themselves as to the provenance, condition, age, completeness and originality prior to bidding.

Saleroom notices

  • The frame number is 7412127.
Activities
Auction information

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Buyers' Premium and Charges

Please Note: The Buyer's Premium for this auction is as follows:

15% on the first $100,000 of the bid price and 10% of any amount by which the bid price exceeds $100,000.

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Contacts
  1. Craig Mallery
    Specialist - Motorcycles
    Bonhams
    Work
    7601 W. Sunset Boulevard
    Los Angeles, United States 90046
    Work +1 323 436 5470
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