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August 30, 2014, 08:36:41 PM

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Author Topic: 59 chief (I think)  (Read 745 times)

Night

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59 chief (I think)
« on: January 04, 2014, 08:27:20 PM »
I still trying to positively identify the year of this Chief. The tool box is kidney shaped and has the ignition switch attached. I am starting a resoration on it as it is a compete bike. Does anyone know where I can heve the speedometer redone. It's complete, however the painted numbers have worn off the glass.

RE_Chief

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2014, 04:16:44 AM »
What's the engine number? On the left hand side of the crank case just below the barrels and above primary cover.

Regards Charles
1955 Indian Tomahawk 500 twin
1960 Indian Chief 700 twin
1964 Interceptor Mk1 750 twin
1967 Interceptor Mk1A 750 twin
1994 Bullet Deluxe 570 long stroke single

Night

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2014, 11:44:48 PM »
The engine number is 50328.

barenekd

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2014, 06:10:21 PM »
the only year Chiefs were built was 1958 as 1959 models as far as I have been able to remember. There were some that were left over at dealers that assigned the current year that they were sold as a model 1960-62.
Bare
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RE_Chief

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2014, 09:34:47 PM »
The engine number is 50328.

Hi Night, the kidney shaped tool box indicates your motorcycle to have been sold when Matchless (AMC) had taken over the Indian marque in 1960.  Barenekd is not quite right, RE Indian Chiefs were made from 1958 to 1960, 800 in total.  My Chief was supplied to AMC (in the US) on the 20th of Dec 1960.  Your engine number is a little below mine (50417) but definitely a 1960 build, the last engine built was 50500.  The date on the title of your Chief was entered when it was first registered and based on the sale date and not the manufacture date, as Barenekd points out some Chiefs are identified as being from 1961.  I have not seen any Chiefs identified as being from 1962 but it is certainly possible.  I don't have a title for my Chief so I can't tell you when mine was dated.

Here is a handy chart for you to look at, it clearly identifies your engine as 1960.  http://www.ozemate.com/interceptor/k_baseIndian1.htm

If you need a new decal for your Stewart Warner speedo try http://re-indian.com/chiefparts.html

Also if your original speedo was numbered up to 150mph then it was most likely a Police Chief, whether it originally sold as one I can not say but all Chiefs with 150mph marked speedos we designated as Police Chiefs.

I hope this helps.

Regards Charles
« Last Edit: January 08, 2014, 09:37:59 PM by RE_Chief »
1955 Indian Tomahawk 500 twin
1960 Indian Chief 700 twin
1964 Interceptor Mk1 750 twin
1967 Interceptor Mk1A 750 twin
1994 Bullet Deluxe 570 long stroke single

rotorwrench

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2014, 06:14:15 PM »
The kidney shaped box was common to the Chief models due to the big battery behind the carb. All of the Trailblazer and Chief twins from late 57 (1958 models) had the 150MPH SW speedo. They use an 8:3 ratio Smiths drive gearbox to turn them and as far as I know, the 120 MPH and 150 MPH use the same drive gearbox. I made a roller tool to fold the bezels down on the SW speedos since the glass & bezels are still available for that size SW. A lot of Harleys and trucks used the same size speedo as the Indian Enfields did. They just had different retaining clip locations on the outer can.

Most Police bikes had the special floor boards and solo saddle but were pretty much the same as the civilian models all in all.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2014, 06:21:20 PM by rotorwrench »

gunnerasch

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2014, 10:29:02 PM »
My "1961" Chief has engine number 50263,  so its a bit "older" than the above scooters and my tool box/ignition is also kidney shaped.

Gunner

barenekd

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2014, 08:23:28 PM »
I don't think those numbers are actually indicating build dates, particularly the PC one. rth actual contract with Enfield was completed in 1959. I think the actual build date was probably earlier, as in '58. I know the export engines for the Chiefs were actually built before the Brits got the Connies which was in April '58. Some of the bikes were shipped in '59, but I doubt that any were shipped in '60. I think those PC***** serial numbers were probably put on by Indian, as they certainly don't follow the standard RE numbers. The shipping dates to the US were probably doled put ever several months even though production had been over for months. By 1960 the numbers and dates were assigned by sale dates, not build dates. As for the kidney shaped side cover, I think that was a distinctly Connie Chiefs that was on all of them that I've seen, as they had a different battery than the Brit ones. Did any of the Chiefs actually have the TT carb on them? All I've seen were Monoblocs. The Brit '58s had TT Carbs.
Bare
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2011 Black Classic G5 (RIP)
I refuse to tiptoe through life only to arrive safely at death
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High On Octane

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2014, 08:43:45 PM »
As far as I know all the Indian models came with Monoblocks.  I think the only bikes that got the TT carbs were Interceptors and Constellations.

Scottie
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1958 Enfield/Indian 711cc Twin

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rotorwrench

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2014, 03:58:34 PM »
Apache models had the 10TT9 and a K2F magneto and was very much like a Constellation. Chiefs had the battery ignition and a 389 Monoblock. The Trailblazer had the SR2 magneto with a 389 Monoblock carb.

Some Connies had the twin carb Y manifold with two Monoblocks and some had the 10TT9 Amal carb.

The Chief models were made originally to Indian Sales Corp specs while still owned by Brockhouse. In September of 1959 John Brockhouse sold Indian Sales Corp to AMC. AMC continued to purchase the Chief models only up to November of 1960. Brockhouse may have had a contract with Royal Enfield that had to be fulfilled for Indian Sales Corp but I'm not certain of that. AMC wanted the sales arm of Indian to market their own products in the USA. The Chief was well regarded by the police departments that used them and AMC didn't make a machine bigger than a 650 at the time so they may have purchased Chiefs from Royal Enfield just for that purpose.

99% of the Chief machines were made in the UK. Only the big General electric headlamp, Stewart Warner Speedos, and Kelsey Hays 16" wheels were made here in the USA. Add ons like the solo saddle may have been manufactured here in the states but I haven't seen one yet to find out for sure. The OEM solo saddles and the police foot boards are hard to find now. Other add ons like passing lamps & windshields were aftermarket products that date back to the Springfield Indian days and were still available in the USA well after Indian Springfield went into receivership in 1953.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2014, 04:09:57 PM by rotorwrench »

ERC

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2014, 08:06:57 PM »
Rotor nailed it exactly.  ERC
2-57 Apaches, 2-57 Trailblazers, 60 Chief, 65 Interceptor, 2004 Bullet, 612 Bullet chopped.

Tom 60 Chief

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2014, 10:18:22 PM »
One difference between the 1959 and 1960 Chiefs was the toolbox (no side cover), which coincided with the transfer of ownership to AMC (Matchless,AJS etc.).  The 1959 had a period Enfield battery box/toolbox and the 1960 and up had the left hand tool box from 1948 to 1955 Matchless/AJS.  Google these AMC bikes to see them on the original machines.  The pictures show my 60 Chief and a right hand box from my 18CS AJS for comparison.  Regards. Tom   

barenekd

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2014, 10:21:39 PM »
Quote
I think the only bikes that got the TT carbs were Interceptors and Constellations.

Intercepters never had the TT carbs. The end of TT carbs on the Connies was '58, then they went to single or one and a half monoblocs, like the first Triumph 500 Daytonas. The Connie Engine in the Berkeley cars had a TT carb in '59.
Bare
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I refuse to tiptoe through life only to arrive safely at death
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Tom 60 Chief

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2014, 10:37:10 PM »
I have seen other sites claim that Indian used a GE headlight, however, the Lucas manual for 1958-1962 lists it as a Lucas MCH60, shell part number 58383.  The pictures show my assembled headlight with a spare shell and a close up of the Lucas part number on the spare.  The headlight on the bike also has this number.  My wheel rims are stamped 'Made in England' but could have been changed before I got the bike in 1978 and I cannot find any definitive information that confirms who supplied the rims.

High On Octane

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Re: 59 chief (I think)
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2014, 12:01:21 AM »
Intercepters never had the TT carbs. The end of TT carbs on the Connies was '58, then they went to single or one and a half monoblocs, like the first Triumph 500 Daytonas. The Connie Engine in the Berkeley cars had a TT carb in '59.
Bare

You're right bare, I must have been having a dumb moment.  LOL    :-\
Bulldog Kustoms - Denver, CO
Specializing In Kustom Paint

The Blackhawk
1958 Enfield/Indian 711cc Twin

Building the 1st EVER Supercharged RE Twin
FULL RACE motor with ACE Performance