1901-1953 Indian Motorcycle – Parts – Accessories – Service

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Rebuilding Your Indian – How to Identify your Rods

by Gary Stark

When you start the rebuilding your powerplant, one of the first things you will want to look at will be your rods. Many people wonder what type, and how strong the rods are in their motor. First of all, let it be said that all Indian rods are strong and not prone to breakage. Indian had four basic sets of rods. Pre 1940, 1941-45 Military, 1946-1948, and finally 80ci rods. Before using any original rods, be sure to check for straightness and it is a good idea to have them magnafluxed to check for hidden cracks. If you are building an 80+ci motor we recommend the 41-45 rods. If you are building a stock 74ci motor, the original rods that came with your powerplant should be sufficient as long as you have checked them thoroughly.
Carefully look at the photos and you should be able to identify your rods:

Pre 1940 – Indians 3rd strongest rod. Characteristics: Wrist pin reinforcement, thin lower race section.

1941-45 Military: Perhaps Indian’s strongest rod. Characteristics: Reinforced wrist pin, thick lower race section.

1946-48: Indian’s weakest rod. Characteristics: No wrist pin reinforcement, thin lower race section.

80ci rods: 2nd strongest rod. Characteristics: No wrist pin reinforcement, thick lower race section.

If you have any questions on your rods please give us a call. If you have any hesitation on using your rods. Starklite Cycle manufactures some of the strongest rods available to use in your restoration.

You may also be interested in our tech article – How to install Indian Rod Races. Please be sure to look it up!

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