Harley-Davidson Street Rod 750 Tracker has Factory Attitude
Daily Slideshow: Check out this cool Street Rod turned 'Dirt Rod' by Noise Cycles.
After an almost seventy-year hiatus, Indian is back to flat track racing with its purpose-built Scout FTR750. Harley-Davidson's counter is the competition-only XG750R, but the production-based Street Rod might just change everything. Scott Jones of Noise Cycles and his Street Rod 750 turned 'Dirt Rod' Tracker is a compelling argument for that change.
It appears that the Motor Company and Jones have both been bitten by the Street Rod 'dirt bug.' In 2017, Harley-Davidson introduced a number of converted Street Rods as 'Dirt Rods' at the Hooligan STT International at the European Bike Week in Austria, and as ice-racers at the Italian SnowQuake. Maybe Harley-Davidson is getting serious about rekindling the 'win on Sunday, sell on Monday' mantra?
In 2016, Jones built a flat tracker based on the much-maligned Street 750. Inspired, Jones built another tracker using the new 2017 Street Rod platform with surprisingly good results. As he explained, “I built one using the Street Rod, which has a twenty-seven-degree neck instead of thirty-one degrees.” The rake made a huge difference, as Jones stated, “This one feels so much better and easier to ride.”
Powering Jones' 'Dirt Rod' is a new 750cc liquid-cooled, 60-degree V-twin called the Revolution X. The SOHC engine with four-valve heads replaces the old pushrod motor of the beloved XR-750 — the XG750R's predecessor. The high output V-Twin is fed by a 42-mm Mikuni Twin Port Fuel Injection, producing just under seventy horsepower at 4000 RPMs. Jones' feedback on performance was that the 500-lb racer felt “nimble.”
To accommodate the high-mounted, left-side exhaust Jones had to flip the cylinder heads. He said in hindsight, “It wasn’t too difficult, but I did it twice!” S&S Cycle custom built the dual exhaust and it fit perfectly. The heat shield proved to be a bit trickier. Jones revealed, “I’m on my third shield now, it took me a few times to prevent my pants and leg from getting cooked!”
The Dirt Rod's wheels and gears are trick, but make race day simple. The front wheel is a nine-spoke factory mag, while the back wheel is the front wheel from a V-Rod. The rear wheel is fitted with a custom hub from SK Machine Company, and a quick-change adapter from GPS Racing. Jones explained, “It allows me to re-gear for any track.”
Made a bit by accident is a one-off gas tank. Intending to only bob the original tank Jones admitted, “I failed, so I cut the sides off the tank to make it...narrower.” Other custom touches include a set of Vortex bars hooked up to Durelle Racing adjustable triple trees, with Big Al risers. The throttle is by Motion Pro and the shocks are from Gears Racing.
The tank might have been a 'happy accident' but the Dirt Rod is a calculated build. It is also a really good example of what a factory-built street tracker could resemble if Milwaukee took up the challenge. Might not be a bad idea since the tracker style is a popular look. It might also be time, considering the 2019 release of the FTR 1200 — Indian's potent new street-legal tracker.
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