View Full Version : Honest Charley's

07-28-2004, 11:31 AM
This is a local speed shop here in town that was closed for a while, but the name was bought by local antique tire man, Corkey Coker, and re-opened, but enough about all that stuff. What I came here to tell you about was what I found while in the rod shop this morning.

It seems that Honest Charley's even builds its own custom motorcyles. It is called a V-8 Flathead. It appears that they use vintage (1937-1940) flathead Ford engines and re-build them and make a motorcycle, kinda similar to the Boss Hawg.


The guy at the rod shop was telling me that they are a well balanced bike and ride a lot smoother than the Boss Hawg. The bike is built on a custom downtube hardtail and a custom flame paint job will cost an additonal $350 and geniune old time repair manual for the flat head can be bought for $49. The starting price on the bike, well if you have to ask you probably can't afford it, is $24,900.

V8 Flathead (http://www.honestcharley.com/V860.htm)


edited to add a link to Honest Charley's home page

Honest Charley (http://www.honestcharley.com/)

[ 07-28-2004, 12:40 PM: Message edited by: cs ]

07-28-2004, 11:49 AM

Joe (SoCal)
07-28-2004, 11:50 AM
Um $25k and ya get a 65 year old rebuilt engine. :rolleyes:
Also Flathead motorcycles are sold "as-is" without warranty (expressed or implied) :rolleyes:

Nice looking bike though :D

07-29-2004, 06:54 AM
But Joe, but where else could you buy that much Testosterone for only 25K. :D And besides that bike, like Victor says, is way cool, and I bet you would be the only one in your neighborhood that would have one.

Chad :cool:

Nicholas Carey
07-29-2004, 06:08 PM
Originally posted by cs:
But Joe, but where else could you buy that much Testosterone for only 25K.<table bgcolor="#000000"><tr><td>http://www.motoguzzi-us.com/mgnalogo_blk.jpg</td><td>http://www.motoguzzi-us.com/bikes/v11balla/photos/v11sb_03.jpg</td></tr></table> (http://www.motoguzzi-us.com/)


John B
07-29-2004, 08:04 PM
ye gods. I have that engine but it's surrounded by a truck with 4 wheels , guards,cab, tray etc.

Of course, there is nothing that sounds quite as good as a sidevalve Ford V8 but......

PS, Chad, sorry to use that ( tr...) word. ;)

Gary E
07-29-2004, 10:14 PM
Bet that roars around town... cool

" a sidevalve Ford V8 "

I had one of the first Ford V8's with overhead valve engines in a 1954 model.. what is a sidevalve engine, when was it made?

07-29-2004, 11:22 PM
"...65 year old rebuilt [Flathead] engine..."

"...where else could you buy that much Testosterone for only 25K...

Well...my Chris Craft has a Ford 289, which seems to thrill the White Trash girls at the marina...

...but then, it doesn't seem to take much to thrill them l'll' red-heads...

John B
07-29-2004, 11:30 PM
1932 ( little deuce coupe an all that)to when....1951 I think.Did twin spinners still have them? not sure but around then anyway.
( edited.. I see you just said '54 . )

sidevalve/ flathead engine has the valves beside the pistons ie , in the block driven virtually straight off the cam.that makes for a very slim head.
over head valve has the valves in the head driven by pushrods off the cam.

and then there's overhead cam........ :D

edited again. I had a 1934 Ford V8 Fordor sedan just like Bonney and Clydes one they stole. sniff, had to sell it to make up the deposit on the first house.
and then sniff, sniff, I had a 1939 Ford V8 DEEluxe COUPE, had to sell it to make up the deposit on the next house. Pass the hankerchief....

[ 07-30-2004, 01:23 AM: Message edited by: John B ]

07-30-2004, 04:46 AM
And now you drive a Holden? :rolleyes:

07-30-2004, 06:46 AM
Just a little info on the guy that owns Honest Charleys. He is like one of the richest guys around here. He owns a company, Coker Tire (http://www.coker.com/) that specilizes in antique and vitage tires. He will go out and buy the rights to discontinued tire molds, and so if you need orginal tires for your Model "A" he is probably the only source in the world for them.

Aside from that he is a collector of vintage cars and motorcycles. He has warehouses around here just full of old cars and bikes in various stages of restoration. Besides all that he is an all around great guy. Everyone calls him Corky, I call him sir.

They had one of the old flatheads sitting in the shop at Honest Charleys waiting to be re-built. It looked nothing like what you see on the bike, but that is because it was in orginal condition waiting to be made into a motorcyle.

I would love to have that bike, even though it only gets 20-30 mpg.


John Meachen
07-30-2004, 07:56 AM
I remember that back in the late Sixties-early Seventies I used to occasionally read Hot Rod magazine.I was too young to hold a driving licence and when I could, money was a bit too tight to indulge in reading Hot Rod as well.I can remember that an outfit called Honest Charley's used to have large and humorous ads spread over several pages promoting all kinds of wonderful things. I can remember that at one stage the owner of the business was profiled and discussed his founding of the business and his progression to success. If memory serves,he was in his sixties or older and had emigrated from Eastern Europe as a young man.He had a name that was long and quite complicated but traded as Honest Charley and then following a series of telephone conversations with customers that began along the lines of "Hello,Honest Charley's" customer "Is that Honest Charley his-self?" Charley "yes".He decided to change his name.Thereafter he became Charley Hisself.Could this be the same establishment?

Andrew Craig-Bennett
07-30-2004, 08:09 AM
Or, if you want a significantly cheaper, regular production, with watrranty, monster motorbike, there's this:


Two litres for US$15,990.00 ;)

[ 07-30-2004, 09:11 AM: Message edited by: Andrew Craig-Bennett ]

07-30-2004, 08:44 AM
John, yes that is the same one. In 1990 Honest Hisself discontinued buisness on Honest Street and in 1998 Corky bought the name and trademark. He brought back some of the old familar names. The president of Honest Charleys, Mike Goodman, was the sales manager of Honest for over 17 years. There are others that were brought back with the re-opening of the buisness.

About Honest Charley (http://www.honestcharley.com/about.htm)


07-30-2004, 08:54 AM
Photo of Corkey's car he used in the Great Race:



07-30-2004, 09:27 AM
Just for general information. The fella sitting on the right side in this photo is Corkey Coker.



edited to fix: At first I said the fella navigating, but on closer inspection the steering wheel is on the right side and thus he isn't navigating, he is the one doing the driving.

[ 07-30-2004, 10:29 AM: Message edited by: cs ]

John B
07-30-2004, 10:22 PM
Stiletto, a " Holtang". I'd have a Falcon but its too fat and heavy. :D

07-31-2004, 03:30 AM
I was going to ask what you thought about the Falcon V8s, they seem to be selling well. I havent driven one, but have done so with the Holden a mate has. That 5.7 is a sweet motor and the Holden feels good on the road.

I had a personal interview with a highway patrol officer a while back, :( I think that is what he was driving.(just a boy racer with the law on his side).

Holdtang? does that mean an engine transplant?

John B
07-31-2004, 05:37 PM
Holtang?... drive it like a mustang LOL.

I drove an xr8 when they first came out. 260kw and it felt "less" than my Holden at about 240.It turns out they had a bit of a weight blowout and and they use a slightly different hp/ kw reading. one is DIN one is ...? can't remember. anyway , its optomistic. New models are rumoured to lose a bit of weight.
Actually their resale is supposed to be pretty poor I understand. Trading a Barra in is not a fun thing to do I hear.

I was looking at pre release "spy" photos of the new VZ Holden as well as the Monaro last week if you're interested. Monaro( Pontiac GTO) is getting 2 big fat nostrils on the bonnet( hood)to satisfy the U.S. "goat" market.also rumoured to get the LS2.

[ 08-01-2004, 03:20 AM: Message edited by: John B ]