European bikes shifted on the right until U.S. regulations required left foot shifting in the early 70s. The Harley Model K was introduced to compete with European models and had right foot shift but when the K became the Sportster the shift was moved due to the law of course. Those were the good ole days of cycling and the British bikes handled much better than the Hogs in my opinion.
And when chopped I believe that the front brake became unnecessary and even dangerous so it was convenient and safer to leave it off. The was very little weight on the front.