Value of 1946 Indian Chief
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Thread: Value of 1946 Indian Chief

  1. #1
    Senior Member adamrol2's Avatar
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    Default Value of 1946 Indian Chief

    A buddy's cousin has just inherited a 1946 Indian Chief. Was willed to him from his grandpa. The cousin doesn't ride and is kinda stumped on what he will do with it. He said he might "put it together". When I asked my buddy what his cousin meant by that I was told the bike has been stored in its original crate since gramps bought it. Also gramps was a collector of cars and had the crate stored in climate controlled garage along with other unknown numbers of classic cars. I am asking for pictures because the story is hard to believe.

    IF (and that is a huge if), if this is true, what monetary value would ya'll place on this bike? To me, this is unheard of and possibly one of a kind so comparing to a rebuild is apples to fig newtons.

    Thoughts!?!?

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    Senior Member papa's Avatar
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    If the story is true, and it is in super condition, I would guess some where between $25,000 - $35,000 Maybe more to the right collector

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    Senior Member PAVALKER's Avatar
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    And I'm guessing it would be worth a tad more in the original crate.... sounds like it has never left it....
    John



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    Senior Member U-Turn's Avatar
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    a buddy of mine just sold his "restored" 1948 Indian on fleabay for $19,400. With the right collector, a truly crated '46 could go much higher, I'm thinking even higher than $30k... Very cool story!

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    U-Turn
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    Senior Member dan3's Avatar
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    If it were me I would look around for some reputable collectors. That is not just another bike and appraising it for a realistic value is going to require more than opinions from guys here. Unless someone can chime in who is a collector.
    Dan


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    Senior Member Hardway's Avatar
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    Tell your buddy's cousin NOT to take it out of the original crate. Then seek out professional classic motorcyle appraisers.
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    Senior Member scup's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hardway View Post
    Tell your buddy's cousin NOT to take it out of the original crate. Then seek out professional classic motorcyle appraisers.
    The crate alone could be worth several thousand dollars to the right collector.
    I have seen original Indian chief's that have been riding with miles go for $30-50k.
    If this story is true... your buddy hit a mini-lottery
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    Senior Member Knight's Avatar
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    A couple of weeks ago I met a man at a gas stop who was filling
    up a 1948 Indian , he said it was new , the bike had been restored with only 400 miles previously put on it before the restoration, he had just acquired it and was going for his first ride and planed to put 50 miles on it that day

    I didn't ask how much he paid for it but i did have my daughter take a picture with her camera and will try to post a photo of the bike soon
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    Senior Member lh4x4's Avatar
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    According to Vintage Motorcycle Magazine and 1946 Chief which was the only model offered that year with a 74 cu. in motor has a range of $7K to $35K.

    That is for condition 1 through 7. 1 is the best which must be restored to perfection.

    For a good guess it may fall between a 2 to 3 which would be $21K to $28K

    Even if in the crate and stored well. It is very likely to need work and would not command a 1 rating.

    There was a motorcycle dealer in Europe who didn't like to sell his bikes. When he died they found many new Nortons in crates and other makes. they went to auction but I never heard about the results.
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    Senior Member Blade's Avatar
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    A 1946 Indian Chief "stored in it's original crate since [your relative] bought it?!?! OMG, a NEW 2010 Chief purchased today would be at least $30K -- but this is unbelievably an original REAL Indian that's never been ridden. That's got to be the rarest of all rare bikes if it's brand new in mint condition; kind of like something placed in a hermetically-sealed time capsule. I can't believe you would or should get anything less than $50,000.

    As somebody else said, leave it in the box, don't touch it. But FIRST, DO find an authentic, bona fide reputable motorcycle appraiser and have HIM give you an idea. Actually go online and contact that PBS show "Antiques Roadshow." THEY should give you a line on the most professional vehicle appraisers -- you need the absolutely most reputable. I bet they'd even fly to you to see it for themselves.

    WhatEVER you do, don't tell anybody. Oh, this forum. Uh, too late... Funny, I bet your grandfather paid all of $3,000 for it brand new. Please keep us informed about what is happening on this once-in-a-lifetime find!!
    Mike
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  12. #11
    Senior Member X'N's Avatar
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    with whats posted above don't touch a darn thing!

    Oh yea and until you post pictures its just another 70 Hemi Cuda convertible in the barn next door story
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    Senior Member arebee's Avatar
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    Tell him to contact Jay Leno...
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    Old Goat TennX's Avatar
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    Man I bet Jay Leno's people are already all over that collection......
    Phil "I should be ridin " Ford
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    Senior Member Blade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TennX View Post
    Man I bet Jay Leno's people are already all over that collection......
    Considering what we're talking about and knowing what a motorcycle aficionado and collector Jay Leno is, he WOULD most certainly love to have that bike. And what's more, that sucker would peel off $100,000 for it faster than you or I would buy a $2 bottle of water and with just about the same financial concern.
    Mike
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    Senior Member doronik's Avatar
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    I personally would contact Indian Motorcycles directly to see what they think. Big time collectors as well would be interested in that. In the crate? That is epic!
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  17. #16
    wayne
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    It does no good in a box, heck, I would have it together and running. Thats ofcorse after the engine was gone thru, and the dried out gaskets and seals.

  18. #17
    Senior Member race66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamrol2 View Post
    I am asking for pictures because the story is hard to believe.


    Thoughts!?!?


    Sounds like a good STORY.

    I kinda doubt you'll EVER see pics.
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  19. #18
    Senior Member mark_1bx's Avatar
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    I think he should give it to me....
    M STAR KMA

  20. #19
    Senior Member Blade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark_1bx View Post
    I think he should give it to me....
    Mike
    Pearl Orange 2003 (Inaugural Year) 1300S Retro


  21. #20
    Old Goat TennX's Avatar
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    I just remembered on a similar note, back in the day we had a long time triumph dealer who had sold his dealer ship and had just a small shop for mods and repairs,when he passed in the late 90"s the relatives checked his shop they found a large number of bikes still in the crates..... from the late 60's earlier 70's.
    Phil "I should be ridin " Ford
    06 CBC 1300R Darkside /Foots Mod......



  22. #21
    Senior Member Blade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TennX View Post
    I just remembered on a similar note, back in the day we had a long time triumph dealer who had sold his dealer ship and had just a small shop for mods and repairs,when he passed in the late 90"s the relatives checked his shop they found a large number of bikes still in the crates..... from the late 60's earlier 70's.
    Wow -- like forgotton quarters at the bottom of your sock drawer...
    Mike
    Pearl Orange 2003 (Inaugural Year) 1300S Retro


  23. #22
    Senior Member dezzy7's Avatar
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    In the crate and well preserved I'm thinking 50k to 100k, because some collector is going to want it REALLY badly and that is going to start a bidding war.

    It probably the only one of its kind... I'll give you 10k for it sight unseen j/k

  24. #23
    Senior Member Rocinante's Avatar
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    High NADA value is $33,625. But, since this a very, very unique situation you can probably throw that out the window. It needs a professional, hands-on appraisal by professionals.

    As far as stupid drivers are concerned, it's mercy, compassion and forgiveness I lack. Not rationality.

  25. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blade View Post
    Wow -- like forgotton quarters at the bottom of your sock drawer...
    You have a whole drawer just for socks?

    How many feet 'ya got?
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  26. #25
    Senior Member Blade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greybeard View Post
    You have a whole drawer just for socks?

    How many feet 'ya got?
    C'mon -- we're still talkin' about a brand new 1940's Indian Chief motorcycle here. OMG, FOCUS man.... FOCUS!!

    P.S. haha - But yes I do and VERY coincidentally I SWEAR on my parents' graves I just bought some more socks this morning at Costco.
    Mike
    Pearl Orange 2003 (Inaugural Year) 1300S Retro


  27. #26
    Senior Member argyle64's Avatar
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    He should get rid of that hunk of junk. Just give it to me and I'll make sure it gets disposed of properly. Bikes in their crates aren't worth $.10.
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  28. #27
    Senior Member mark_1bx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blade View Post

    M STAR KMA

  29. #28
    Senior Member bmcgc's Avatar
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    Sounds to me like that bike is a one of one.

    Value?

    It all depends on how bad someone wants it.
    Its been a long road: 1800S, 1800N, 1800T, 1300S, 1800GW, Rune, FLHT, FXDSE2, FLHR, FXDF, FLHRSE5, FLHTUSE, VT1100C3 (2)

    The VTXs are gone but not forgotten.

  30. #29
    Senior Member Knight's Avatar
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  31. #30
    Senior Member Knight's Avatar
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    Here is the 48 Indian with only 400 miles on it



    http://www.vtxoa.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=211&pictureid=950

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