From:Dave Hennessey Electronic:dave -A-
Subject:RE: RE: RE: Top of tank decal for Model 165 Date:Tue Apr 12 21:17:33 2011
Response to:15659
Jerry and Mutt,

I agree with Mutt. Despite the -53 part number, these did not appear until 1959 Model 165's - along with the fuse at the regulator, rubber gas line and big speedometer.

I started a Restore chapter on decals, but then realized that all of the repro tank top decals had the "Harley-Davidson" blanked out, so I couldn't use the images I gleaned off the web.

I believe that Harley-Davidson never actually registered the trademark on a number of things that bear the (R) mark. Remember that for a few years the Model 165 fork panels have (R) next to Tele-Glide? If you go to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office web site and do a TESS search, you probably will come up blank if you look for Tele-Glide.

H-D probably intended to register Tele-Glide, but then thought "Why spend $100 (2010 dollars) - who's gonna market a competing hydraulic fork called Tele-Glide"? So they never actually registered the mark.

I wouldn't advise selling merchandise with the Harley-Davidson name on it without permission - they've got that pretty well sewn up.

Personal opinion - I'd rather see a 1959 with no decal than one with a counterfeit decal.


Jerry, the tank top decals came out on the 1959 Models. The reproduction decals don't have the registered trademark on them.

Okay, I'll answer my own question. I remembered that the January 1953 Cycle road test of the 165 is in the How To Restore section. I checked, and there's no tank-top decal on the 1953 165. My guess is that the tank-top decal probably first appeared on the 1955 165 to differentiate it from the new bare-bones Hummer 125.


e-bay vendor Red Raven offers a top-of-gas-tank decal reading "165" and listed as correct for 1953-1959 Model 165. Is this correct for all the years cited?