1982 Harley-Davidson “Sturgis”


In 1980, technology was brought to the popular Harley-Davidson FX line-up in the form of a rear belt drive on the Shovelhead powered machine. The Super Glide, a combination of the FL engine and frame with a Sportster front end created by Willie G. Davidson, was introduced in 1971 with the “boattail” seat design but was soon made more traditional. In 1980, the newest rendition of the Harley-Davidson Super Glide was the FXB Sturgis; B for belt drive and Sturgis for the South Dakota town hosting the annual summer gathering of motorcyclists. 1982 was the first year of the reorganized Harley-Davidson where 13 employees, lead by the late Vaughn Beals, bought the company from AMF; a great moment noted by a special badge on the front fender.

Black and orange are classic and immediately popular on the Sturgis, especially with the red trimmed cast wheels. The belts, manufactured by Gates Rubber Company used Aramid fiber, provided cleaner, quieter operation, no adjustment or lubrication was needed and they outlasted roller chains.

The Sturgis belt drive system worked well and has been accepted by Harley-Davidson followers. This first run was as a limited edition machine. The belt drive system soon spread to other models. The Sturgis model was revived as the FXDB in the 1990’s with the Evolution design engine.

This 1982 Sturgis is one of over 70 Harley-Davidsons on display at the National Motorcycle Museum. When you visit you can view everything from a 1908 “Strap Tank” to a 2003 CVO Road King plus hundreds of pieces of memorabilia and signage.


  • Engine: Overhead Valve 45 Degree V-Twin
  • Displacement: 82 Cubic Inches/1340 cc’s
  • Bore & Stroke: 3.50” x 4.25” / 89mm x 108mm
  • Horsepower: 67 HP
  • Induction: 38mm carburetor
  • Ignition: Electronic
  • Transmission: 4-Speed
  • Clutch: Wet, Multi-plate
  • Primary: Belt Driven
  • Final Drive: Belt
  • Brakes: 255mm Dual Disks / 255mm Disk
  • Electrics: 12 Volt
  • Ignition: Electronic Ignition
  • Wheels/Tires: MJ 90 – 19 / MT90 – 16
  • Frame: Steel, Double Down Tube
  • Suspension: Telescopic Fork /Dual Shocks
  • Wheelbase: 64.7 Inches
  • Weight: 612 Pounds


  1. Harvey Brehe

    This was my first Harley, bought it new, had about the same amount of miles on it when I got rid of it. Had a lot of fun on that bike !!!

  2. Steven Zaborsky

    In late 1981, I was 24 years old, and employed at H-D’s Tomahawk, WI fiberglass & windshield plant, On a Monday, a co-worker had told me that his cousin worked (and also raced an XR 750 flat tracker for them) at a Harley dealer in Rock Falls, IL (Twin City H-D) and they were going to be selling out to a new owner on 1/1/1982.

    Their inventory was up for grabs and I was told that they had a black, brown, & gold 82′ Sturgis FXB there (which I wanted, my co-worker wanted a Sportster that they had). After calling and speaking to the owner to make sure that they still had it, (they did), I told him I wanted it and I would be down there on Saturday to pick it up, and he said he would hold it for me.

    The next day, I raced to my credit union to see if I could get a loan for the remainder of the cash needed to buy it. The longest 3 days of my life, waiting to be approved… Finally, on Thursday, I got the news that it was a go…

    After work on Friday, my Dad met me at the plant with his Chevy wagon ( the only thing we had to tow with), and we rented an enclosed u haul trailer before we got down there. When we arrived at the dealer, I was told that it wasn’t there. What??? Joke on me, one of the techs had it out on a test ride. A couple minutes later he cruises in on it. I was in love. I took possession of my FXB with 4 miles on the odometer (it now it has 21k on it) and we’ve been together for the past 36 years. My wife gets perturbed when I refer to it as my “1st. child”. Oh well.

    By the way… the price after dealer and employee discounts? $4,500.00!!!

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