Digital Edition Subscribers: Read Roadracing World Magazine Now >
Roadracing World.com - An Online Service of Roadracing World Magazine
SHARE:
Dec 11, 2016

Bonhams Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction To Feature Lineup Of Early-American Machines

A 1913 Flying Merkel Twin (left) and a 1914 Feilbach Limited Twin (right). Photos courtesy of Bonhams.

STRONG LINE-UP OF PRE-WAR MOTORCYCLES ASSEMBLED FOR LAS VEGAS WITH RARITIES FLYING MERKEL AND FEILBACH LTD. LEADING THE LIST

New date and venue to host impressive array of collectors’ motorcycles

Los Angeles – For Bonhams’ seventh annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction, a strong line-up of pre-World War II motorcycles will be featured among the breadth of selection for which Bonhams is renowned.

Leading the list is one of the most sought after early machines in the world – an original, unrestored 1913 Flying Merkel Twin. Representing all the attributes of desirability – high build quality, success in racing, low manufacturing numbers, short corporate lifespan and few surviving examples – the Flying Merkel of Ohio is the archetypal antique American motorcycle.

And if this were not newsworthy enough, an expertly restored 1912 Flying Merkel Twin road model from a private Southern collection will also be offered.

Even rarer than Merkel and more esoteric is a 1914 Feilbach Limited Twin. With the number of known Limited Twins counted on one hand, this example from the Larry Bowman Collection of California is quite significant. Moreover, this was the last Feilbach made and was the personal motorcycle of company founder Arthur Feilbach. The Feilbach Motor Company of Milwaukee was a worthy competitor to the titans across town but, ultimately, unsuccessful. The 10-horsepower machine offered what was considered substantial power for its day and sold for $290 – “Worth every cent of it!” as the advertisement claimed.

Another always popular and highly desirable motorcycle consigned is a 1912 Harley-Davidson X8E “Silent Gray Fellow.” Considered one of the finest motorcycles to ever come from the storied Motor Company, this twin-cylinder model is a jewel in the crown of early motoring.

Other exceptional early motorcycles include a 1911 Reading Standard Single, a 1916 Thor with sidecar, an English-made 1919 Matchless with sidecar, and a very noteworthy original paint 1925 Excelsior Super X, among others.

And from the 1930s there are two motorcycles in particular, among several – both expertly restored and both from the Bowman Collection – that merit special attention: a 1937 Harley-Davidson EL Knucklehead and a 1937 Indian Sport Four.

These and many more exceptional motorcycles from nearly every era and genre of motorcycling will be offered on Thursday, January 26th at the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. To learn more and to register to bid, go to bonhams.com/vegas.

Follow us on Instagram for daily motoring updates @BonhamsMotoring.