Technical : Numbers : Guess-O-Meter
Dave Hennessey

Shipping Date Guess-O-Meter

Enter your serial number:
Model Year 1952
1951 1952
Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug

Invalid assumption #1: Factory shipments began exactly on September 1 each year (March 1 in 1952).
The factory did a changeover during the first week of August, and production started in the second week. Depending on what day of the week the first of August fell on that year, which models were the first ones off the line, and other variables, the first K and Sportster rolled out the door some time in mid-August. Rather than guess which day, we decided to just use Sept 1.

Invalid assumption #2: Monthly shipments were exactly 1/12 of annual production.
Historian Jerry Hatfield researched monthly production figures at the Harley-Davidson archives, but found they varied “all over the place”. We thought of simulating that with a random number generator, but it was too complicated, so we stuck with 1/12.

Years ago, you could write to the factory, they would dig out the production record for your bike, and tell you exactly what day it was produced, what color it was, and which dealer it was shipped to. Back then, milk was a nickel, cars were a quarter, and motorcycles had kick-starters. Today, you have the Guess-O-Meter.