Tag: flying merkel

Vintage Motorcycle Eye Candy: 1914 Flying Merkel

Vintage Motorcycle Eye Candy: 1914 Flying Merkel

In 1902 Joseph Merkel Started manufacturing single cylinder motorcycles in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Merkel was an innovator in the newly blossoming motorcycle arena. With his sights set on competition machines by 1905 Merkel began to produce racing bikes.

Innovations by Joseph Merkel

  • A patented spring fork that was the precursor to telescopic forks
  • Monoshock suspension
  • Throttle controlled engine oiler
  • Cam-actuated intake valve
  • Merkel Motor Wheel
  • Reduced highway fees for motorcycles in New York 🙂

In 1908 Merkel merged his motorcycle company with Light Motor Company. The newly formed Merkel-Light Motor Company was then relocated to Pennsylvania. It was during this time that the “Flying Merkel” came into the world.

Merkel motorcycle production ceased during the time of World War I.

YouTube Video: Flying Merkel Running

Links & Photos


  • http://www.theflyingmerkel.com/themerkel.htm
  • http://www.motorcyclemuseum.org/halloffame/hofbiopage.asp?id=229
  • http://www.50sville.com/merkel.htm
  • http://www.motorcycle.com/events/historic-vintage-bike-auction-preview-80205.html
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