The "Born to be Wild" motorcycle exhibit at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California will be coming to a close soon. I've received some nice comments on my Floyd Emde Replica Indian 648 Big Base Scout that has been a part of the exhibit and I thought people would be interested to know how the bike came together. Working from two rare Indian Big Base Scouts that I was able to locate and purchase, I worked with veteran restorer Steve Huntzinger to produce as close of a replica that we could achieve of the Indian as-raced by my father in 1948. I was then able to take the bike to Daytona in 2008 for the 60th anniversary of his Daytona 200 victory.
Floyd races down the beach in 1948. He led the race from start to finish.
Bike and rider look fresh after 200 long miles.
A Firestone Race Win Ad.
Delivering a Big Base Scout to Steve Huntzinger that I bought at an auction in Kansas City.
A second Big Base Scout came up for auction the same year in Daytona. There were less than 50 of this model made by Indian, so finding two to work from was pretty amazing.
The engine getting ready to go in the frame.
From some original photos I have, we noticed a non-stock air cleaner that was sealed better than the stock Indian filter. And Floyd added a tool bag to the gas tank mainly to give him some support when he was tucked in on the 2-mile long straights.
Look down on the frame behind the front wheel and you can see the extra quart of gasoline Floyd had strapped to the bike. With the pits at one end of the track, he was afraid that if he ran out at the other end he would be out of the race. He never needed it during the race, but did have the can on there.
Here's the finished product, showing the air cleaner and extra quart of gasoline.
We included his pit sign codes that were on the original bike.
Tom Seymour at Saddlemen Seats made this tool bag working from photos I gave him to work with.
We even had replacements custom made of the decals that were on the original bike.
March of 2008 and the project is complete. This is at the Daytona 200 monument on Daytona Beach which honors Floyd and the 11 other winners of the Daytona 200 beach races.