Ekins was on set of the 1980 movie, The Blues Brothers, at the time.
The Traub was later sold to collector and restorer, Richard Morris, who then sold it to Wheels Through Time Museum curator, Dale Walksler, in 1990.
It has been on permanent display in the museum collection ever since.
Traub a regular rider
Don’t think this unique motorcycle is merely a museum piece though. Dale rides the Traub fairly regularly.
When asked about the engine components, he enthusiastically replied: “Everything inside the engine is just magnificent. The pistons are handmade, and have gap-less cast iron rings, the engineering and machining being simply years ahead of their time.”
When comparing other top motorcycle makes and models of the era, the Traub has no equal.
“Comprised of a sand-cast, hand-built, 80 cubic-inch ‘side-valve’ engine, the machine has the ability to reach speeds in excess of 85mph (136km/h) with ease,” Dale says.
Aside from its few off-the-shelf components, the Traub has many unique handmade features. The three-speed transmission is thought to be one of the first of its kind and the rear brake, a dual-acting system that employs a single cam that is responsible for pushing an internal set of shoes, while pulling an external set, has never been seen on any other American motorcycle.
“For a machine to have such advanced features, unparalleled by other motorcycles of the same era, is truly outstanding,” Dale says.
“It’s my opinion that The Traub was an attempt at a new breed of motorcycle. But how on earth could a machine have been produced in such great form, with capabilities that far exceed that of any comparable machine, without the knowledge of the rest of the motorcycle industry during that time?”
The hunt for the Traub’s elusive origin hasn’t stopped.
“While we may never know why the machine was placed behind that wall, we do hope to one day find out more about its history and the genius that created it,” Dale says.