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The Wheels Through Time Motorcycle Museum

Updated on January 23, 2020

Wheels Through Time Museum

Traub Motorcycle
Traub Motorcycle

Dale Walksler, Founder

The museum "Wheels Through Time" has a long history of displaying unique and rare motorcycles. Way back in Mt.Vernon, Illinois, Dale owned a Harley-Davidson dealership for some 24 years. His love of vehicles started at the young age of 16 when he bought his first bike. In the pursuing years, Dale was collecting, riding, restoring, and displaying his growing collection.

In 2002, Dale decided to relocate his museum to Maggie Valley, North Carolina. He sold his Harley-Davidson dealership, packed up, and left for North Carolina. The museum, Wheels Through Time, is located at 62 Vintage Ln, Maggie Valley, N.C. Their contact number is 828-926-6266.

Dale has been featured on several TV shows such as:

American Restoration

Chasing Classic Cars

American Pickers

What's in the Barn -his own show


One-of-a Kind Traub Motorcycle

The Traub Motorcycle
The Traub Motorcycle

The Rare Traub Motorcycle

Within the Museum is the 1916 Traub Motorcycle. This unique bike was found hidden in a bricked-up wall in Chicago and not discovered until 1968. It is the only example ever seen, and the mystery of who built it is elusive. Bud Elkins purchased it in 1972. Bud was the stuntman for Steve McQueen. He then sold it to Richard Morris, who finally sold it to Dale in the mid-1990s.

For Dale, he considers it the "crown jewel" of his collection. Dale and his crew painstakingly brought it to life. He remarked, "the pistons were hand-made, and the only part he had to fabricate was the base gaskets. No other gaskets were in the engine as it had been so perfectly machined." it had a Schebler carburetor, a Bosch magneto, and a Troxel large seat. This was the work of a master toolmaker. How and why it was hidden for so long will probably always be a mystery.

The Thor Flesher Flyer

Thor Flesher Flyer
Thor Flesher Flyer

Flesher Flyer

The Flesher Flyer was built in 1913 in Omaha, Nebraska, by Louis Flesher. He made some prototypes with "working floorboards," which operated the brake and clutch. It also had a drip-feed lubricating device that became active when the rider sat on the saddle. The only known mention of the Flesher Flyer was an August 1913 issue of motorcycling, which stated it would be ready for the 1914 season.

The Legends Award

In 2019, Dale was awarded the coveted Legends Award for his dedication to preserving the history of motorcycles. That same year he was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. When one sees his work and collection and the bikes he has restored over the years, it is easy to see why he was so honored.

Legends Trophy

Legends Trophy
Legends Trophy

1939 Harley-Davidson Knucklehead Give Away

On November 4, 2020, Dale is raffling off a 1939 Harley-Davidson Knucklehead hand-built by his team for the winner of the raffle. The bike has OHV knucklehead engine mated to a genuine HD-4- speed transmission. Tickets are available on the museum's website and will be in front of a live drawing. Tickets are 1 for $10., 3 for $20., 7 for $50. and 16 for $100. Proceeds will be used to help support the museum.

There is also a monetary award for second and third place winners.

Also on his website is a Gift Shop loaded with many unique items.

Sale's Gift Shop

Dale's Gift Shop
Dale's Gift Shop

Future of Motorcycles

While its true sales of Harley-Davidson are slipping, the company is addressing different avenues to get younger buyers and offering more affordable options. It seems that larger bikes are not what the buyers are looking for. They want economical bikes at a fair price.

So, as in any business, customers will dictate what they need and want.


Other Note Worthy Motorcycle Museums

Listed here are some great motorcycle museums:

Owls HeadMuseum, 117Museum St., Owls Head, ME 207-594-04854

The Pioneer Auto Museum, 503 5th St Murdo, S. Dakota 605-669-2691

Route 66 Vintage Museum, 128 S.Main St., Miami, Ok 918-542-6170


Comments

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    • powers41 profile imageAUTHOR

      fran rooks 

      4 weeks ago from Toledo, Ohio

      Thanks for the post! This museum is really unique.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      4 weeks ago from UK

      This is a good review of this museum. I've been to a motor museum, but it was mainly cars. I haven't been to a museum specifically for motorbikes. It reminds me of the Steve McQueen clip from The Great Escape.

    • powers41 profile imageAUTHOR

      fran rooks 

      4 weeks ago from Toledo, Ohio

      Thanks Rosina. Glad you liked it.

    • surovi99 profile image

      Rosina S Khan 

      4 weeks ago

      It is interesting to see how Dale Walksler, the founder of the "Wheels Through Time" museum preserved the history of old generation motor cycles in his museum and that is the reason why he was honored. Very much appreciated for sharing this piece.

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