Known issues with the Hinckley Classic Triples - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-06-2005, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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Known issues with the Hinckley Classic Triples

First thought on this thread - T300 classics are rock solid, very reliable motorcycles. However, one or two issues may come up from time to time, the following have been known:

1. Temperature lights flicks on and off when the bike is NOT overheating. This is known to be a ground issue in the wiring harness.

2. Electrical system is known to overcharge the battery. Check the fluid level in your battery often to make sure it does not boil dry. Some also suspect that this leads to problems with the coils failing prematurely.

3. Coils - as stated in #2 - some bikes experience pre-mature coil failure. Some T-Birds were fitted with West German coils, but most bikes are fitted with coils manufactrured by Gill. Gill coils are less reliable. Nology makes coils that can be used as replacements, and are much more reliable.

4. Pressed nuts inside the silencers are known to break loose. It is best not to remove the brackets from the muffler unless absolutely necessary - instead, remove the bracket and muffler as an assembly.

5. 95 and early 96 models had an issue with a weak starter clutch. If you are considering one of these bikes, make sure it has been replaced.

This thread is for folks to list the know issues with the T300 classics line, in order to help out new owners of these bikes, and folks interested in purchasing one. All the on-line "experts", feel free to chime in with your experiences!

[ This message was edited by: cafetbird on 2006-05-21 06:26 ]

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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-06-2005, 12:22 PM
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A good idea for a thread Scott, but before we go making potential new owners paranoid, we should make it clear that not all of the problems are inevitable, or even likely.

A couple of other issues that come up regularly-

Sprag clutch failure. Before VIN # ??

Ditto The alternator impellor bolt shearing.

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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-06-2005, 03:26 PM
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The "old" style alternator shaft bolt was used up to VIN 56684.

Don't about sprag clutch access, books only say later models.

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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-06-2005, 06:33 PM
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Oil breather system can be problematic. Make sure the oil level is absolutely right or the excess gets thrown into the airbox.

Even with correct level, the same thing can happen. I think it's down to the left hand cover oil seal and the slinger in the right side cover.

I have had problems with this - but to reinforce the point about not wanting to make potential buyers paranoid, I haven't had any other problems with my 99 T/bird. Great machine.

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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-07-2005, 08:04 AM
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I'm not an "on-line expert", but I'll throw in my two cents. First off, the bike has been great. It has style for miles, and for me is a very satisfying all-around bike.

Here is my list of issues:

1. Oil leaks due to overfilling. The amount prescribed in the manual is too much. It should be filled only to the midpoint on the sight glass. I forgot to specify this during my last service, so now I have a leaky bike again. The solution is to drain the oil to the proper level, which is midpoint in the sight glass, and to drain the airbox tube often until the excess oil has been run through. In 2003, the centrifigal oil distributor in the crankcase was replaced with a slightly different version under warranty, per Triumph central, but this hasn't seemed to make a difference.

2. I've also had the grounding issue with the instrument cluster, fixed under warranty with a new wiring harness.

3. My speedometer becomes erratic at times, despite the cable having been lubed.

4. My throttle cable snapped at only around 5,000 miles.

5. The horn sucks
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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-07-2005, 06:47 PM
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My '04 Tbird Sport with less than 500 miles started out shutting down often. Triumph's solution was to disconnect the emissions system. Now, with less than 3000 miles, it will loose a cylinder or two. So far all Triumph has done is to repair the coil wires. It's in the shop again waiting for someone to make a decision about how to fix it. Is the coil issue something Triumph is aware of?
post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-07-2005, 07:32 PM
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Here comes my whine about My TBird.
All of the above apart from the coils, no problems yet but i have bought some spares, as insurance.

* Within six months of buying the Bird the wheels went rusty.
Rode through the winter and tried to clean and dry it as per Triumph's warranty requirements, but not alway possible every time you take the bike out.

* Paint (powder coating) on the engine lifted and flaked off.
Possibly due to the same reason of British winters and lots of salt on the roads.

* Paint peeling off the filler neck and contaminating the fuel system.

* Air box IE air filter a right pain to get at, especially if you do your own servicing.

* Cost of Triumph servicing is way more expensive than other bikes. The last time i looked at the prices, a Major service cost £200.00 more than for any other bike at my local dealer ( who is the main one for the south west of England) at over £500.00. Ouch!!

*No seat lock on the 2001 TB. Getting the seat off and on was tedious. Especially as i cross threaded one of the bolts and had to re tap it. You carry tools around in your pocket to get at the tools under the seat.

* No tool set supplied as standard. You have to make up your own or buy a Triumph one.

* Chrome peeling off the indicator stalks, rear indicator mountings and wing mirror stalks.

* Some dull and corroded fixing bolts. Some are stainless steel but others just go yuck. I think it spoils the look of the bike and its just another cost of replacement.

* Rubbish alarm system supplied as an option, not cheap, that doesn't like moisture, resulting in the bike having to go back to the shop on the back of a towing lorry, in full view of the s******ing masses (ha, ha he bought a Triumph).

* Cost of after market parts, sold by Triumph at extortionate prices.

My partner said that i love my bike more than her, she might be right!! :wink:
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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-09-2005, 01:52 PM
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Front End Dive on Braking --

My biggest initial problem with my Adventurer was severe front end dive during hard braking.

The solution was to install Progressive Suspension 11-1144 front springs with 5-7/8" PVC spacers and 20W oil.

The airspace above the oil was set at 120mm with the inner tube fully extended and the spring installed. This required almost exactly 1 pint of oil per tube.

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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 08:13 PM
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I have a 1999 Legend I bought used in 2003 with 5200 miles on the clock. Had the throttle cable break the 2nd week I owned it. Also had rust in the fuel tank . Dealer replaced the cable free and I did the tank sealing myself. I now have over 32,000 miles on the bike and no problems other than the above. The bike sits outside all winter and I ride it hard.
I jetted it ,and also installed a K&N filter with the Off-road pipes it's fast ,sounds great and of course handles beautifully.(especiall with the Lower bars kit) The fork dive is a bit excessive but that'll be my next mod-stiffer springs upfront. also had to replace the OEM rear-shock this year. Bought a Hagon for US $375.
I will never sell the Legend. :-D

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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 11:30 PM
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Took possesion of mine in mid-July (03 TBS). Took the lil lady for a 4 day 900 ,ile anniversary trip (her first longer than an afternoon ride ever). LOVED IT!

The seat is good for 120.0 miles. Followe dby at least a two hour lunch, and no mor ethan 50 miles between stops the rest of the day (200-250 mile days didn't allow this often).

Rear pre-load is absolutely ignorant (so are a lot of bikes)

I took it in for warranty after returning: tach (wavered), speedo (sticking), flash to pass switch (bad), paint peeling in the tank, instrument panel ground (too light a wire).

All were fixed with no questions asked saving the peeling paint. Will be draining and cleaning this winter, as I have to go to reserve much sooner than I used to.

No center stand (knew that).

Bad parking lot manners (turning radius not good at slow speeds).

Fully adjustable suspension; good seating position; great handling; good power (if I had wanted a speed triple, would have bought one); right on looks (real friend maker bike); driver foot pegs fold correctly (most wont let you put your feet down and move your bike forward without scapling your legs); short inseam friendly for two feet down. Changeable handlebars and risers (and cheaply); good mileage (have D&D 3:3 pipes; too loud though); decent range.

Overall, a very nicely matched motorcycle. Has good manners (save slow parking space manuevers), good balance of power, great brakes, easy to ride smoothly. I've had more power, and less power, but this is as well balanced a bike as my old FLH -- plus it handles and accelerates much better.

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