SOLD - $10,655 for Old Harley-Davidson Oil Can

An early example of an iconic collectible

The antique Harley-Davidson five-gallon oil can (Source: eBay)

April 22, 2016
By James Massey

ONLINE - An antique Harley-Davidson oil can has sold for $10,655 on eBay. While there certainly may be others that have sold for more, this is the highest price I can recall for an oil can.

The can, dated June 1st, 1909, by a patent on the lid, is five-gallons, and has an original price of $4.00 listed on the back. The sellers description in the eBay listing described it as "very, very, rare," and in exceptional condition.

"This rare oil can is in near mint condition with some surface rust but very little for it's age. It's 13 3/4" high, 9" square. This can has been in my collection for 30 years and I have never cleaned it. This will be a great top shelf can in anyone's collection!"

A few years back, famed oil can collector Frank Fritz of American Pickers, found a one-gallon Harley-Davidson oil can dated 1908, and paid $3,500. That acquisition was for his personal collection. The episode was titled, "Frank's Holy Grail." Even now, that amount seems substantial. But, this ($10k) sale may be taking things to a whole new level.

Video: Harley History 1903-2013 (source: iMotorcycle Video).

Auction information

The antique Harley-Davidson oil can received 43 bids from 21 bidders over the course of 10-days. The opening bid was $100, final bid was $10,655. The auction ended Thursday, April 21, (2016) at 2:38pm Pacific Standard Time.

For more information and close-up photos of the album; see **eBay auction listing; #182089910575 (auction links may expire after 90 days).

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*Price is based on foreign (currency) exchange rate at time of sale.
** eBay auction links generally expire within 90 days of auctions end