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Harley Riders USA Forums » Harley Davidson Motorcycle Models » Harley Davidson Model Codes » WLA Vs WLA Bobber?!


Harley Davidson Model Codes Sometimes model codes are obvious, sometimes not. Find out what the hell the Harley Davidson model designation codes mean here!



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Old 01-11-2015, 04:34 PM Top   #1 (permalink)
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Default WLA Vs WLA Bobber?!

Hi, just one short question,

what is the difference between a wla and a wla bobber?!

Cheers.

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Old 01-11-2015, 11:24 PM Top   #2 (permalink)
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WLA bobber is just a WLA stripped back and the guards shortened.....originally the front guard would replace the rear one and you would not run a front guard, the idea was to reduce the weight of the bike so it would be quicker but now days you can buy a 900cc kit and a 4 speed box for them
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Old 01-15-2016, 01:48 AM Top   #3 (permalink)
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Also known as the "Liberator". It was built for military use and to their specs.
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Old 01-15-2016, 05:01 PM Top   #4 (permalink)
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As a matter of fact; my first Harley was a WLA, "messenger" bike, 1942 vintage. Of course, being as how it was 1968; i stripped it down, what was then known as a "cut-down" Harley. I bought it at San Jose Indian, on Stevens Creek Blvd. in San Jose, CA. Made my own sissy bar, put a Mustang "peanut" tank on it, and a Triumph rear fender. Solo seat and drag pipes (homemade). Polished some aluminum heads for it. Chromed the front springer forks, and had Dudley Perkins send them out to be rebuilt (Los Angeles). 21" front Avon Speedmaster, threw away the front brake; didn't work all that well, anyway. 16" rear. Put the suicide shift down at the tranny, the foot clutch made for some exciting uphill starts. I rode it so much, that even with a kidney belt, i was pissing blood from too many rough roads. Those WERE the days, my friend! Damn, i still dream of that bike, late at night. And today it's called what would be a "Bobber". Big Bike and Chopper magazine called them "Customs", or simply "Choppers". We did "bob" for apples, 'tho, LOL!!! People i knew, back in the day, would say "like your 45". Being a WLA 750cc, it was only 45 cubic inches, and was never "fast", or even "faster". Today, the Haters would call it a 'Meter Maid" motor. The K Model flat-tracker of 1954 changed all that, 'tho. Carradine, the actor, had a Flat-tracker that had 90+ horsepower! Sportsters were always the fastest: XLCH=Xtra Large, California Hot! Too bad Buell was killed off; real race bike, imho
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Old 01-15-2016, 05:21 PM Top   #5 (permalink)
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This is the "Liberator"
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Old 01-16-2016, 01:48 AM Top   #6 (permalink)
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FLHTom1948, I am unfamiliar with that opposed cylinder bike. Can you tell me more? Russian? Ural?

This is the only HD Liberator I have known about:



  • W : the W family of motorcycles. Harley-Davidson (except in very early models) gives a letter designation for each model family. The W series at the time was the newest incarnation of the 45-cubic-inch (740 cm3) flathead motor, and was developed from the earlier R family 1932–1936.
  • L : "high compression", in the usual HD scheme. The "low compression" W model was only briefly available.
  • A : Army. The company would also produce a model to the slightly different specifications of the Canadian Army, which would be named the WLC. The WLCs differed from WLAs chiefly in the use of some heavier components, usually Big Twin parts, as well as Canadian blackout lighting.
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Originally Posted by FLHTom1948 View Post
Sportsters were always the fastest: XLCH=Xtra Large, California Hot! Too bad Buell was killed off; real race bike, imho

The Buells should absolutely still be with us, and better understood, however, HD does have an off the floor, 126 HP, bulletproof, engine.
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Old 01-16-2016, 02:35 PM Top   #7 (permalink)
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BB -yah, that's the standard messenger bike from WW2, the opposed twin was an experimental design. The XR750, race only model, was the fastest thing on the 1/2 mile and mile tracks, during the fifties, Carradine had one with more than 93 HP! The XLCH, late sixties model, was my personal favorite, after the Knucklehead of the forties, of course. And a vintage Indian Scout (whcih can whip an Evo sporty, no problem; has always been my "dream bike". Well, maybe after Jay Leno's Ariel Square Four and Vincent Black Shadow, haha!
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Old 01-18-2016, 02:39 AM Top   #8 (permalink)
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The experimental XA? Hot-Damn, I forgot all about that scoot. A take on the BMW's from HD, what a switch for a change. It's usually HD being xeroxed.

That's not a "real" Harley anyway!!!!!

First bike 69' Sporty!
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:02 PM Top   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackbeard View Post
The experimental XA? Hot-Damn, I forgot all about that scoot. A take on the BMW's from HD, what a switch for a change. It's usually HD being xeroxed.

That's not a "real" Harley anyway!!!!!

First bike 69' Sporty!
I really liked all my Harleys! I would feel naked without one!!
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Old 01-19-2016, 01:18 AM Top   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by FLHTom1948 View Post
I really liked all my Harleys! I would feel naked without one!!
LOL! I get that. Raised on and around Harleys and riding since 12 years old or so. I feel an odd loyalty. Possibly misplaced, but, I also love the feel of V-Twins and so, if I'm going to ride a V-Twin, it might as well be an HD or Buell. The rest just seem generic with no personality. Copy's minus a few like Ducati, KTM.

However, I have to admit, I was just about ready to bail when the Revo was introduced. I waited 20 years since the first talk of the "new engine". Might of had it sooner were AMF more financially stable. We did at least, get the Evo heads out of them (and Porsche) before they split. Well worth the wait. A complete gem in every respect.
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