Randy Kreiter lived and died on two wheels. He built his motorcycle collection over four decades, and this week 28 of his bikes are up for sale in Billings.
The extensive collection reflects Kreiter's wide interest in motorcycles. He had vintage Harley-Davidson and late-model sport bikes. He rode on the street and raced on dirt flat tracks and road courses. Kreiter reveled in competition, but also stockpiled vintage bikes for future restoration.
The collection includes a 1946 Velocette, a 1947 Norton and a 1945 Harley-Davidson Flathead. There are four flat track race bikes and three bikes built for speedway racing.
At 59, Kreiter was an experienced racer and rider but died on Oct. 18, 2015, after crashing a Harley-Davidson. He was speeding down U.S. Highway 87 near Lockwood Road when he crested a hill and left the right side of the road.
Kreiter kept the bike vertical for a considerable amount of time but did not keep control of the bike when it hit the soft soil beyond the shoulder. The Harley’s speedometer was stuck at 80 mph, said David Kreiter, Randy’s brother.
David said his younger brother always loved going fast. He earned a reputation as a tough competitor on the motocross track and decided to try his hand in the high-speed sport of road racing at 50. He started riding young and never lost his passion for motorcycles.
“The first bike he ever rode was my Honda 305 scrambler, and his legs wouldn’t touch the ground so I had to catch him every time he quit riding,” David said.
Randy was only 11 or 12 at that time. Soon he bought his first bike, an enduro — an off-road racing motorcycle used in long-distance cross-country time trial competitions — that he owned until the day he died. It’s one of 10 bikes from his collection that won’t be sold in the auction. His three sons will keep a few, and some close friends purchased bikes privately. But that doesn’t mean the collection has been picked over.
David Kreiter said Randy operated a successful contracting business. When he finished a big job he would often celebrate by buying a motorcycle. Sometimes he went even further.
“He would buy two of them, and he would leave one in a bubble so it was dust free and preserved for resale. He’d ride the other one,” David said.
Two of the preserved bikes made it into the auction. One is a 2003 Harley-Davidson 100th Anniversary Screamin’ Eagle Softail Deuce with two tenths of a mile on the odometer. The other is a 2006 Yamaha 50th Anniversary YZF-R1 with no mileage at all. Both bikes are in the same condition they arrived from the factory. They’ve never been started or even filled with oil.
David said despite his brother’s immense passion for motorcycles, he’ll be remembered more for his jovial nature and sense of humor. He collected Coca-Cola memorabilia, beer signs, pedal cars and other vintage toys. Randy displayed his collections so guests at his frequent parties could enjoy them too.
The Coca-Cola items were already sold at a previous auction, but his collection of toys, signs and pedal cars will be included in the motorcycle sale.
The estate is being sold by Musser Bros. Auction and Real Estate in an online auction that goes through Monday at 6:30 p.m.
The motorcycles and other items can be viewed online at mbauction.com or in person at Musser’s Auction Center at 4350 Neibauer Road. Inspections are limited to Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m., Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. and Monday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.