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An interesting new exhibition opens at Manchester's Museum of Science and Industry this weekend, showcasing the history of Harley-Davidson motorcycles in 34 carefully selected bikes.

From early, single-cylinder beginnings through war and racing, technologies and lifestyle, to the modern day and a room showcasing the current state of motorcycle customising, the exhibition sets out to give visitors an opportunity to see iconic motorcycles up-close and personal, nicely laid out in an exceptional space within a building that has plenty of heritage of its own, with plenty of space round each bike to really appreciate it, and the journey that Harley-Davidson as a company has made.

Each bike is set in the context of its time, to give an idea of the age it represents, with a few singled out for a full diorama treatment, notably the WLA45 and ELC Knucklehead outfit, and a 1948 Panhead that was one of the bikes taken to the Arctic by W&W Cycles – an epic voyage that is played out in a small video theatre.

See the full story in American-V 46.

The exhibition will run for six months, with some bikes - all loaned by private owners - being switched after three months, and will make an excellent destination over the summer, but make sure you allow a full day for the visit, because it's at the heart of a museum that covers all aspects of technical history from full sized steam engines down to the minutiae of the things that have shaped social and industrial history.

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