Thought I would post this interesting shot. Cadillac and Packard also used service motorcycle’s for service.
Well Ed the motorcycle tandem conversion attachment sure looks interesting. Do you know the details? I will leave the car identification to wiser minds!
Hi Jak! No I don’t know any info on it. The photo was marked 1932, But I am sure it’s a 1931 series 41.
This looks like this is a new car delivery. The bike says Hollywood, plus something else.
Driver tows the car to the new owner and drives the bike back?
Just my thoughts.
Jak & William,
The motorcycle in the photograph is unique in that the pony wheels fold down and lock in place. I have not seen one of this type up close.
My family has a 1936 Harley-Davidson Servi-car (three-wheeler with a utility box behind the seat). They were used by grocery stores for deliveries, service stations, car dealers for service/new car deliveries and police departments for parking enforcement. The tow bar would fold down from the front axle and clamp onto the bumper bar of the car.
Yes, the car is driven to the owners home with the motorcycle in tow and the motorcycle is ridden back to the dealer or service station.
I want one of the motorcycles. It could be attached to my car on runs & if I breakdown I could ride for help. MUCH more fun than an iPhone!!!
If interested see the link for a servi-car being towed.
Our family servi-car is the same year and model as the photo of two police officers on parking patrol (next to the circa 1934 Chevy). Our motorcycle does not have the optional padding and handrails on the top of the storage box.
My understanding is that the police would ride by and mark tires with chalk in a certain way to identify when the car first appeared in a parking spot 9assuming the city did not have parking meters). If the car was still there beyond the designated time, they would stop and you got a ticket!
The original tow bar frame and bumper piece is VERY hard to find. The early servi-car parts (pre-1937) are as hard to find as brass-era Pierce parts (in my opinion). Our motorcycle started out life as a grocery delivery vehicle in Rochester, New York.
If I ever host another Pierce-Arrow annual meet, anybody that parks in the wrong spot might get their tires chalk marked by me on one of these!
Make that when, not if…2011 in Fairport was so much fun! I volunteer for the honor of having my tires all chalked up as soon as we pull into town no matter where it is parked.
Thanks for that photo, John – it’s a delight!
Coming from “10 time Gilmore and Annual Meet Dave”, that is a real compliment! Thanks, Dave
Stephen, I am glad you enjoyed the servi-car photographs. I went a bit off topic from the normal Pierce-Arrow information. Hopefully, most readers didn’t mind.
I am coming to Rochester this Summer to see that Trike!
You can always bring it to the Buffalo Meet in 2015.
Then you can race the Motorette.
I’ll bring a 1938 Indian Service Car…… we can drag race them down the parking lot.
Now it is time for the dirty truth.
As with many old vehicles, the family 1936 servi-car had a hard life and is now in pieces. Two owners before us gave it to his two teenage sons to use as a farm vehicle/toy. I believe that they hit every tree on their property at least once with this motorcycle. With a reverse gear, they also took pride in backing into things. With the sheet metal damage on the bike, it was a wonder that the kids made it to adulthood. Somewhere in this time period, a tree fell on the box lid, the back bumper and a sheet metal piece under the back of the box was probably broken and just thrown away. When the bike became non-operable, it was stored outside under a big metal box for 20 years. It sunk into the ground, the rims rotted out and the primary chain cover rusted through from sitting on the ground. My father and I saw the bike at this point, but passed on it since the price was too high and it looked really, really sad.
The next owner took it apart, lost a few parts (thank you), but had the engine and transmission rebuilt by a reputable shop. The owner then ran out of money, or lost interest, and listed the bike in the local paper. We saw the ad, went and looked at the pile of parts and realized it was the same bike we had looked at some 10 years earlier. We ended up buying it for less than the owner paid for it originally. You have to buy it then, right?
The sheet metal is now at about 95% dent free and the rims have been replaced. Unfortunately, from my purest perspective, my father decided upon more modern rims with stainless spokes to make the wheels flashy.
With about $3,000 to $4,000 (realistically) in missing parts, metal fabrication and optional parts that I would like (Corbin speedometer assembly), paint work (by me) and assembly the old girl will live again. This work will fall to me since my father is 87 now and I have a couple of things ahead of it on my to-do-list, but it will get done since it is a neat piece.
It will end up a nice rider, but not a show piece. If I could ever find an original tow frame, wouldn’t it be neat to see one of these clamped onto the back of a 1931 Pierce-Arrow at a show! People would ask a ton of questions and kids love to sit on a stable three-wheel motorcycle. The combination of the Pierce-Arrow and servi-car would be a real attention getter. Maybe someday!