Board index Flathead Power-Technical Questions, Answers, and Suggestions Servi-Cars 62 servi car VIN

62 servi car VIN

Post Sun Aug 25, 2013 4:41 pm

Posts: 7
hello, I am new to this post but have bruce palmers book and have been restoring my 64 ge servi since 1970 and had a few questions regarding my VIN number which starts out with the letters DRF followed by the numbers 12XX62.
these are locate to the right of the boss where they should be but the boss does not show any sign of being ground off or filed.
anyone have any idea where this numbering scheme comes from?

Post Mon Aug 26, 2013 6:50 am

Posts: 36
Location: Western Australia
Welcome to the forum.

No offence meant but why does your thread heading say 62 if you think you are restoring a 64GE? Did you mention 62 because 62 is at the end of your DRF number?

Originally a 1964 model Servi-Car would have a serial number similar to the following example: 64GE2345. But you have a DRF number so what makes you think you have a 64? Because you think it’s a 64 will I assume the engine has 1964 belly numbers?

On another forum a while back someone said DRF stood for Department Registry File and it was said to be a state-assigned serial number or ID number. I think it was said to have been used for vehicles in California. I also read somewhere else of another meaning for those three letters and it was similar to the above although not exactly the same but I can’t recall what the second person said the letters stood for. If you contact the DMV or a similar authority you may get a full explanation.

One other thing: Bruce's book doesn't cover 1964 Servi-Cars in detail although it does have some general information that may be useful. The last Servi-Car covered by the book is the 1963 model.

Post Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:36 am

Posts: 7
thanks for the info... and sorry about the year mix up.
this is regestered as a '64 but has '63 stamped in the licensense plate box and then there is the VIN number of'62 helping to explain the whole mix up...
so it sounds as if this is really a '62 block installed in a '63 frame and first sold as in '64. i'll check the bottom numbers and see if they agree also...
yes, i noticed that there was not a lot of info for my servi in bruces book but it still has a lot of other neat info... and the 45 engine was much the same during those years.
i did buy this as a semi basket in 1970 and could never figure out why the VIN number looked funny. i'll check out DMV.
now if i can only figure out what type of parking brake was used on this year(s)....

Post Tue Aug 27, 2013 4:16 am

Posts: 36
Location: Western Australia
You’re welcome. I don’t know if 62 in your DRF number has anything to do with model year of the engine or not. I’ve got a few DRF examples in my photo collection and the numbers don’t usually relate to the model year of the machine. However, one Big Twin case is stamped 55DRF9+++ so it may be a 1955 model but of course someone could have stamped 55 on the boss after the other seven characters were done.

You said your DRF number is located to the right of the boss but that the boss does not show any sign of being ground off or filed. That seems unusual as my examples have the DRF number on the boss. Can you post a photo of the number boss please.

I mentioned in my first post that DRF was said to stand for Department Registry File and I found the notes I made about that from another forum in 2007. But DRF in that instance was said to be on the frame not the engine. Apparently in the 1950s–60s when Harley only had an engine number the LAPD had the state issue them a Department Registry File number on the frame. This way when a bike came in for an engine rebuild they would take a rebuilt engine off the bench, swap it into the chassis and have it out the door the same day.

I also found the other DRF mention that I couldn’t recall earlier and that one came from a different forum again but it too applied to the frame not the engine. According to that source, DRF stood for Department Registered Frame and California was said to have had a program where the frame was stamped DRF along with a number so that procedure allowed the owner to change motors in a similar fashion to the abovementioned practice used by the LAPD.

If yours is registered as a 64 then there should be some reason for that so you could be right in thinking it was first sold as a 1964 model. However, if it’s really a 62 block then you won’t have a GE engine because the GE as an electric start machine wasn’t introduced until the 1964 model year. (There were some GEs in the 1930s but they weren’t electric start models and they weren’t stamped GE. The paperwork said GE but the engines were stamped as R-series or W-series, depending on year.)

Also, there were changes to the left case casting for 1964 models although the casting number remained the same: 112-392. Let us know what you find when you’ve checked the belly numbers.

Regarding the parking brake, I know little about them. On page 121 Palmer says the brake for 1951–72 S-Cs locks the front instead of the rear etc. I assume you read that page?

Post Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:16 am

Posts: 2770
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Your parking brake is on your front brake lever.
DRF is Department Registry File. The number should be on the crankcase. DRF is a California State assigned number.
Look on the bottom of your crankcase and you will find the Line Bore number stamped towards the front side. What is this number?
On the neck casting of the frame, on the left side, you may find a very small number lightly stamped into it. Usually a letter and three to four digits. What do you find? This type of number may also be on the bottom fork clamp and on the front of the transmission case. This number system started in 1962. If your frame has been repainted the number my be filled with paint as it is very shallow.

Post Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:10 am

Posts: 7
thanks for the info.
i do remember seeing this same number on the neck tube and i have not been able to check the engine belly since it's installed.
i'll find that out when i dis-assemble for painting (after a few short trips around town etc..).
in the mean time, i will also check with hd to see if they can shed further light on the numbering.

Post Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:45 am

Posts: 36
Location: Western Australia
browncr, I sent you a PM.

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