There are no cameras allowed in the motorcycle assembly area, but they have lockers available to stow your camera and take the key with you. All we did was sign in at the Visitor Center desk and we were on our way with about 10 other people for this guided tour. Since the plant is noisy, they give you a hand-held receiver with earpiece so you can hear the tour guide easily as he describes what is going on.
This is the Vehicle and Powertrain Operations Plant that was opened in 1998. They produce the Sportster, Dyna, and VRSC families of motorcycles here. After a short video we were on our way to the factory floor.
The tour guide escorted us through the various stages of manufacturing and assembly and he gave detailed information along the way. We saw the process from fabrication and finishing through final assembly. We saw welding and laser cutting, polishing and assembly of fenders and fuel tanks. The motorcycle frames are made from steel tubing and we saw the robot-like machines that would bend them into the required shapes. One thing the guide told us was that the speedometers for bikes being shipped into Canada or to Australia have to be in Kilometers per hour and not Miles per hour. Bikes being sent to some countries in Europe and Japan had to have different wattage for the bulbs in the headlamps and turn signal lights. Interesting.
Once the tour was over we were free to take photos in the gift shop area. They had all sorts of Harley stuff for sale and had some beautiful motorcycles on display....Don't Touch!!
The tour was free. I'm not sure that motorized scooters would be permitted, but I saw several wheel chairs in the Visitor Center that folks could use to be pushed around during the tours. No children under 12 are permitted on tours. Although we do not ride motorcycles, this tour was still interesting. Who isn't interested in seeing things being made? Harley-Davidson Company has been around since about 1903 and they are a bit of Americana we find pretty cool.
Hope you enjoyed the brief tour of Harley with us.
Until next time....so long for now!