The Experiment: an Overview


These technological improvements along with chassis modifications by DJ’s Cycle, fitment and machining by DPS Technologies and modern brake systems provided by King Danny Biglove makes us confident in our ability to make 250 thousand miles on this— A REAL PANHEAD. We believe this may have been the panhead the founding fathers would have built in 1948 if they had the technology. Add the cosmetic design of Inuendos Design Company and this panhead will still look good at 250 thousand miles. Third party oversight for this experiment is provided by RBR Maintenance, an aircraft maintenance company licensed by the FAA to insure the validity of this experiment.

The Engine

ENGINE: 1948 Panhead-Experimental BORE: 3.5 inches STROKE: 3.625 inches DISPLACEMENT: 70 cubic inches HORSEPOWER: 55

The engine built required absolutely the most skilled builder to accomplish a well trued and balanced crankshaft assembly as well as the highest quality engine assembly integrating a variety of highly technical processes and parts. Special thanks to one of the world’s leading authorities on building antique Harley engines and experimental and specialty engines: Dave at East Bay American Motorcycles in Ennis Texas. Thanks Dave.

Technical Improvements over the stock 1948 Panhead



Practically the entire engine has been cryogenically treated by 300 Below, the industry leader in the cryogenic treatment process. The improvements to wear qualities on hardened steel, cast iron and cast aluminum is one of the tools we are using to help us make our 250 thousand mile goal.


We have accomplished an improved oil system by using an Evolution style oil pump with 4:1 gears to provide 50% more volume and pressure over a stock 1948 system and improved oil filtration by using an early Evolution spin on filter. Improved oil technology is provided by Schaeffer Specialized Lubricants 20/50 Synthetic V-twin racing oil.


Beyond starting with good geometry the improvements we have over 1948 are… Evolution rods for improved rod angle over an already great rod angle and rod to stroke ratio… improved oil and oil delivery … three hole crankpin … improved metal technology … Improved machining technology and cryogenic treatment. Add all of that to a well trued and balanced crankshaft and I believe we have a panhead crankshaft assembly that will go 250 thousand miles. To keep down the vibration on the crankshaft we’ve mated the crankshaft drive side to a Karata primary belt drive that is connected to a Baker six speed overdrive transmission and a Karata final belt drive to have the smoothest drive train available for a panhead.


Along with an improved rod angle with Evolution rods we will be using Twin Cam technology by using hypereutectic pistons. We have also cryo-treated the pistons and the 1948 cylinders to make our 250 thousand mile goal.


The stock 1948 heads have been cryo-treated along with the rest of the valve train. We have begun with an Andrews “J” grind cam selected for it’s good all around performance, moderate lift and for it’s smooth arching lobe profile that offers smooth lift and set down of the valves and low impact on the valve train. The stock 1948 rocker bearing blocks, re-manufactured by Baisley Hi-Performance and matched with stock style rocker arms modified by Baisley to have roller tips to insure long life to make our 250 thousand mile goal.