Indian — American legend. I remember with what interest I saw in my childhood old Russian automotive magazines. «Cars FORD — the most popular Rb Russia», «Victory BENTS in Russia in 1913», «English without valve cars DAYMLER — magazin cars 3. I. Kvachadee. Bolshaya Dmitrovka, 23. And among these and the numerous other advertisements — page with four Indians in the corners laughing: «INDIAN motorcycles are indispensable to lyubyh roads.
Years later, one of the first Moscow parades auto-moto-old I saw these bikes «alive». Who arrived on the «Indiana» from Estonia guys were terse: motorcycles speak for themselves. Drop-shaped fuel tanks, high «horn» rudder, wide tires, the powerful roar of the lower valve engines. One can understand the enthusiasts on both hemispheres, which are now believed that nothing better on two wheels has been established.
A company’s history began at the turn of the century: in 1900 the owner of the racetrack in the city of Springfield, Mr. George Hendy began in the workshop production of bicycles under the brand name «Indian». At the same time at an exhibition in New York, he met with the engineer Oscar Hedstromom, who drew his idea — to add two more wheels and engine. Ninety years ago, May 25, 1901, at the first light appeared vy motorcycle «Indian», designed Hedstromom.
Perhaps today it would refuse to take a motorcycle — on our way of thinking is rather a motorbike. Quite bicycle front fork and seat, almost a bicycle frame (in the seat tube was built single-cylinder engine with only 1.75 hp.), And they was a bicycle pedal attached image. Even the fuel tank was located not in its rightful place: fuel is stored in a bulging crescent rear wing. However, in those days it was quite a decent bike — even the very best in design: instead of conventional rear-wheel drive with a belt he had a chain drive!
In the first test, the year it was made only three motorcycle. The following year, Hendy, receiving financial support from the New York bankers, opened full-scale production, firing has 143 motorcycle. Consumers are quickly appreciated sturdy design and high quality motorcycles to the Indian «, and in 1905 the company moved into first place in the production of motorcycles in the USA, manufactured in 1181 the car.
Also in 1905 the public was presented the first «Indian» with a V-twin engine — this type of engines will be the calling card company. The first-born had a working volume of 490 cm3 capacity 3,5 liters. pp. The inlet valve is opened by dilution in the cylinder — feature low-speed engines of that time, and the rear cylinder engine replaced a seat tube frames.
At the beginning of the century mark «Indian» was a symbol not of traditions and innovation. Hedstrom had an amazing flair for promising innovations: one of the first in the world he used on motorcycles from the magneto ignition, electric lights and electric start, suspension, two wheels, two-and three-stage gearbox. He created for racing motorcycles in 1911, a sensation in Europe. On motorcycles «Indian» with a reduced to 585 cm3 (in accordance with the requirements of the then rules) two-cylinder engine were working the first three places in the class of «Senior» famous race «Tourist Trophy». It was a great victory over knew not until the defeat British motorcycles. And the two-cylinder 1000-Ku bovoy machine J. des Rosiers in the English track Brooklyn set a new absolute speed record for motorcycles — 140.59 km / h in the same year it increased to 142.83 km / h). All this could not affect most favorable to the prosperity of the company — in 1913, its 4500 employees produced 35,000 motorcycles (300 units per day).
The first «Indian» was pronounced bicycle features, but for its time was a very advanced design.
Single cylinder and double cylinder «Indian Daytona at the beginning of the century were considered one of the best motorcycle racing, not only in the U.S.. In 20-ies they already had four valve cylinder heads.
In 1916, started production model «Poverplas» («Super powerful»). It was the classic «Indian» — a reliable, powerful and enduring. Its main features of the thirty-odd years have been characterized Motorcycle Company — two-cylinder V-shaped lower valve engine cylinder capacity of 995 cm3, three-to timid transmission, front fork with quarter elliptic sprung as an elastic element. Soon, the traditional motorcycle «Indian» had to change the color red on olive — 41 000 cars of this model served as the Expeditionary Corps during the First World War.
«Indian Vvrrior» 1950 — the last «Indian» in the British style. 500-cc two-cylinder overhead valve engine had a capacity of 29 liters. with, but the motorcycle could not satisfy any fan of traditional large «Indiana» or lovers of British high-speed machines.
Beginning of the 20’s — the heyday of the company: it is ranked first in the world to produce (120,000 motorcycles in 1922) with a modern plant at the time, equipped with semi-automatic machines, motorcycles enjoyed an excellent reputation, backed by a sport successes (including Among a series of world records). The range of models were produced by single-cylinder 350-cc «Prince», double cylinder: 600-Kubo-st «Scout», 750-cc «Cop Scout, 1000-cc» Chief «and the 1200-cc» Big Chief. » Interestingly, roughly the same model range produced and other major American company — «Harley Davidson». If its bikes were considered rough hard worker, a 350-cc motorcycle engine Indian Prince «in 1928 developed capacity 8 liters. pp. Red has become a tradition for motorcycle company in 1911
The younger brother of model «Chief» — «Indian Scout», its 600-cc engine had a capacity of 12 liters. pp. As with all motorcycles «Indian» until 1948, he had an unusual system of governance: the gas governed the left rotating the handle, the right arm allowed to change the ignition timing advance, transfer switched the lever to the right, clutch pedal is administered to the left.
Indian Four «in 1939 Straight four-cylinder engine working volume of 1,265 cm3 and 37 l capacity. pp. allowed to disperse February 30-pound bike to a speed of 147 km / h.
Motorcycles «Indian» had the glory of more sophisticated, although because of collusion firms set identical prices for similar models. In 1927, the company «Indian» has posted a trump card on which the opponent has to be answered. This trump card called «Ace» («Ace»).
Firm «Ace» from 1919 produced four-bike design which is developed by William Henderson, a longtime admirer of the scheme. Like other developed Henderson motorcycles («Cleveland», «Henderson»), he had the inline four-cylinder engine with overhead inlet and bottom — exhaust valves, but set in a frame does not cross, as in modern supermototsiklah and longitudinally. For all their faults (the car was quite heavy and slow, moreover it was inevitable overheating rear cylinders) charmed the motorcycle driver is unusually smooth engine. In 1927, the «Indian» became «Ace» and continued the publication of this bike at first, entitled «Indian Ace, and then -» Four Indian «(» Four «) under his wing model has survived all the other American four-cylinder motorcycles: lasted at production of up to U.S. entry into war in 1942
Ironically, in 1927 cut short period of prosperity. With huge sums of money from the sale of motorcycles, government, embarked on financial speculation, has led the company to the brink of collapse. Moreover, it tried to acquire the factory production of cars, the refrigerator, the automobile shock absorbers. The profits of these projects have not brought, many were left unexecuted orders for motorcycles. Barge crash of 1929 and the consequent Great Depression, apparently prematurely would reduce the company in «grave» if it were in 1930, has not acquired Paul Dupont — from the very same family that owns the current largest chemical concern DuPont. The first thing Paul covered all production, except for a motorcycle. Then he was appointed chief designer of Briggs Weaver, known to him ever since the development of cars DuPont.
Weaver strongly held fundamental modernization
All models (single-cylinder were excluded from the program in the late 20-ies) and put on the production of two new, 800-cubes «Sport Scout in 1934 and the 500 cc Junior Scout in 1936, the Sport Scout became the most popular model of the company during the second half of the 30-ies. Sound policies bore fruit: in 1939, «Indian» once again surpassed the «Harley Davidson» on the number of motorcycles you are elucidated.
At the beginning of World War II, «Indian» and «Harley» responded to the call of the U.S. government to maximize the production of motorcycles for military purposes. Motorcycles «Indian» were used not only in the U.S. Army, but also in the British Army, were supplied
they and the USSR. But the military orders are not served prosperity. In September 1944 the War Department, having decided that there are enough bikes to end the war, withdrew the contract. The company remains unpaid 30 000 kits for assembly of motorcycles. Thus, in 1945 she went with worn-out equipment, uncertain prospects, and an empty bank account. Financial flair Dupont told him it was time to go out of business, and he sold the company.
The new owner was Ralph Rogers, a multimillionaire, the owner of several successful enterprises. Rogers resumed production of the civilian version of the «Indian Chief» with V-twin engine cylinder capacity nizhneklapannym
1206 cm3. In addition, he signed a contract with the British trading firm of John Brockhouse and began selling through a dealer network «Indiana» some British motorcycle brands, as well as easy to 125 cc Czech «ChZet. But his main project was the production of motorcycles occurred but new to the U.S. type design which during the war, began his acquisition of the company «Current Endzhiniring.
The new models — single-cylinder 220-cc «Arrow» and two-cylinder 440-cc «Scout» — appeared in late 1949, but the general public was left to them equally stifling. These were the cars clean in the British style, with a parallel arrangement of cylinders (Scout) and overhead valve, and the American motorcyclists to their liking was the traditional «Indian» — impressive, with a V-shaped engine torque which reaches a maximum with almost very low speed. The fact that he could not offer the «Indian», has successfully sold the «Harley Davidson», and a longtime dispute between two companies was settled. In 1953, motorcycles were collected last «Indian Chief», and the brand became a part of history.
However, over half a century Americans are too accustomed to this brand and could not so easily part with it. Under the name «Indian» in the 50’s and 60’s of the U.S. selling British motorcycles, Royal Enfield «,» Matchless «and» Velosett, and in the 70 years that name appeared on the petrol tank, small two-stroke motorcycles in the style of «enduro «imported from Taiwan. But many in the U.S. who believes that the one real «Indian» was the best in the world of motorcycle. For such enthusiasts, two California companies are ready now to recover from almost scrap «Indian Chief» or «Indian Four» — and whether they are calm, the machine will be better than new!