1958 Harley-Davidson FLH Panhead

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The Duo-Glide earned its name from its new swinging-arm rear suspension, with motion dampened by a pair of hydraulic shock absorbers. In 1958, the Motor Company produced an unknown quantity of motorcycles in this green and white color combination for the Shriners. When the Shriners took delivery, the company found it had assembled 12 more than the organization wanted. Eleven of these unusual units went to dealers, while the final example went into the Archives. Two-tone paint was standard on all FL models, but not in this custom combination. This example also has the optional Chrome Finish Group, as well as whitewall tires. Harley-Davidson assembled 1,200 FLF models and 2,953 FLHF models in 1958. Each sold for $1,320 plus the options

The 1950s were heady times in the motorcycle scene worldwide, and Harley-Davidson-as the lone main motorcycle manufacturer in the U.S.-was not immune. More than a decade of Panheads were out on the open road by this point in 1958, with hydraulic suspensions since the second model year of the FL models in 1948 (Hydra Glides) Just a year after the much ballyhooed debut of the immensely popular XL Sportster medium weight models. model year 1958 saw Harley-Davidson's big bikesThe flatheads were now a thing of the past for Harley-Davidson as well, the exception being the company's three-wheeled Servi-Cars. A period advertisement claimed, "Cloud Cushioned comfort. New swinging arm rear suspension combines with Hydra-Glide front fork and spring-loaded seat post to make the Duo-Glide a miracle ride."

Two-tone paint was standard for the FL models, but this teal and white 1958 Duo-Glide was a custom color combo for a Shriner contract. Reportedly, Harley-Davidson built a dozen too many for what the Shrine rs had ordered, so 11 of these unique teal and white Duo-Glides went to Harley-Davidson dealers, with one of the models joining the Milwaukee motor company archives. These Shriner bikes also received the optional Chrome Finish Group and wide whitewall tires. The 1958 Duo-Glides were hand shift and priced at $1,320 new. The OHV 74 Cl V-twins had an 8:1 compression ratio by this point, and they were rated to 48 HP at 5,000 RPM. Rolling on a 60-inch wheelbase, they weighed in at just about 750 pounds. This first-year Duo-Glide 1958 Harley-Davidson FLH Panhead was featured at the Harley-Davidson Museum in downtown Milwaukee and received a comprehensive nut-and-bolt restoration.

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