Look what came to The Hog Shop folks, a rare Harley Davidson 1956 KHK, untouched, in storage for years and absolutely beautiful. We were fortunate to have a visit from this beauty and its family yesterday and will share with you some pictures of a bike that for the most part can only be viewed in a museum but first some info on the history and rarity of these bikes.
The Harley Model K which was introduced in 1952, was Harley Davidson's answer to the British imports of lighter and faster bikes. Although Harley was working on its OHV at the time and contemplated rushing its production for the K models, they decided to go with a 45 cubic inch pre-war design, side-valve v-twin engine. Sales not being where they needed to be, Harley introduced a bigger engine in 1954 that was 54 cubic inches, which is known as the 883, and the KH model was born. However, the additional torque from the increased 3/4 inch of stroke was destroying gear teeth causing Harley to strengthen their gears.
Always chasing a better ride, Harley offered what would be the best of the K Models in 1955, the KHK. This model featured a speed kit, consisting of a roller-bearing bottom end, hot cams and polished ports. The '56 KHK brought about slight changes with shorter shocks and the same travel, a strengthened oil pump, roller bearings in place of the double row ball bearings and a twin tail light replaced the old style bullet light. Although sales were moderate and production ran for another year, Harley in 1956, decided to end the short life of the KHK. Known for their speed and agility, many went to the tracks and were lost forever, making them a rare find today.
All pre '54's had to have their cases split in order to access the tranny.
Harley managed to produce 2,824 of K and KH motorcycles in the 2 years they were offered.
Total production for the KHK, as shown in the picture above, was only 1,163.
Did we mention this is the second one to come to The Hog Shop??? How cool is that?!?! We have one in a restoration process because of it's severe condition...pics coming soon.
A big thanks to the family of this KHK on behalf of The Hog Shop for sharing such a rare gem with us...we truly appreciate it.