Thursday, 6 December 2012


This month's winner of the Essential Buyer's Guide of his choice is Gabe Gibbany from Harrison, Arkansas USA. Gabe wins a copy of Harley-Davidson Big Twins - The Essential Buyer's Guide for sending us these pictures of his 1949 Harley Pan-Shovel Boneyard Chopper. Please keep your entries coming in, and you never know, it could be YOU in this space next month!

Here's proof that you can build a classy vintage chopper with virtually all used parts hustled up from locals and swap meet finds ...

After selling my 1937 80" ULH Flathead, I was on the search for my next project. I started gathering up some miscellaneous parts for the vision in my head. I knew I was looking for a Pan-Shovel for this build. The only problem was finding one in my price range. The Chopper Gods do exist because I was offered a 49 Pan-Shovel project while pumping gas. Now I was set.

I brought her home and started the total dis-assembly. I completely rebuilt the engine with new bearings, Jim's crank pins and lifters, 9:1 Weisco pistons, Andrews J grind cam and S&S carb. The girder front-end was a local swap meet find and the dual discs on front really help it stop! The engine is linked to a 1936 HD tranny via BDL belt drive in a custom primary cover. The frame is a 1951 HD Wishbone.

I used a Baas Metalcraft seat pan and covered it with a butchered set of saddlebags. All work was done by myself in a backyard shack except the paint, which was courtesy of a good friend, Jim Crabb.

I am currently building a 1918 Harley T, and we are finishing up the wife's 56 Panhead and her "secret" chopper project.
Gabe Gibbany

Gabe selected Harley-Davidson Big Twins – The Essential Buyer’s Guide by Peter Henshaw as his prize!

Having this book in your pocket is just like having a real marque expert by your side. Benefit from the author’s years of Harley-Davidson ownership, learn how to spot a bad bike quickly, and how to assess a promising one like a professional. Get the right bike at the right price!
More info.

Do you have an unusual car/motorcycle with a story to tell?
We want to see it! Send photos & description to
We will pick one a month, and any we feature will win an Essential Buyer's Guide (worth £9.99 / $19.95) of your choice.
Click below to browse the whole series.