Bonneville or Thruxton as a first Bike? - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
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Bonneville or Thruxton as a first Bike?

Hello

So this will be my first bike. I am 26 years old. Very careful about my saftey, but also want something to enjoy. I am not going to get used because where i live there they only drive harley and ninja, so very hard to find a used Bonnevillle. Is the Thruxton harder to control? or need more experience? I really fall inlove with the Thruxton but i am not sure, i dont want my first back to be something very hard to do. i want to actually enjoy the rides.

Need thoughts from a Thruxton owner. or anyone who tried both.

both 2015. Bonneville that the dealer got is special edition. with Tach. both got ABS

Cheers
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 10:12 AM
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I have ridden both and either would make a great motorbike for you. My first bike was a 1963 Bonneville I got in 1965. The first day I rode it I went between a car and a building ended up on a front porch. Thought the bike was totaled. It wasn't. There was a good Triumph mechanic in town and he got it fixed for $125.00. In 65 that was a lot of money. Glad I had a job. Did not do gear back then. I lucked out just got a few bumps and bruises. No motorcycle safety classes, so I went and practiced in a parking lot and deserted roads and leaned how everything worked.
( I am 26 years old. Very careful about my safety, but also want something to enjoy.) I assume you have a motorcycle endorsement and if you have not taken a beginners motorcycle riding course I strongly advise you to do so. I currently have a 2001 Bonneville and a 2013 Ducati Monster 1100EVO. Good luck and welcome to the insanity.

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Gone but not forgotten. 1963 Bonnie/1970 TR6C/2002 Daytona 955i/2006 Sprint ST
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 10:44 AM
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My first and only bike is a Thruxton 865. This is plenty of "go" for a new rider, at least for me. I would go used but cast a wider net, I searched within 200mi range. Id look for a mostly unmolested stocker or a modded one that comes with stocker parts and an intelligent owner that can speak to the mods. I sat upon standards and cruisers and although my feet were squarely planted I felt that I was reaching out to the bars which didn't feel right. Thruxtons put you more forward over the tank, some might not like that, but as a 5'8" rider 30" in seam, that worked better for me. Hand numbness can happen if you are clenching the bars as it is best to keep loose and bend your arms rather than leaning on your wrists. Took me 3 months to figure that one out. Tuck position cuts the wind quite well with a flyscreen, rise above and you get blasted on your chest.


Thruxtons need some mods out of the box imo. The highest value one for me were:

-New tires with better tread pattern - The Metzlers track too much. Tires gave me most confidence
-Suspension - rears first, doing front forks now - again instant confidence builder
-Brakes - Sintered pads gave better stopping bite but you cant panic on them or bad things will happen
-Exhaust\Breather\Tune - Not necessary but welcomed on EFI version. Tune being the most valuable for low throttle and evenness.

Basically, you could stop there and have a fun setup for around-towning. I dont feel the bike is a good expressway option, but that can be debated.

Also the 865s do not have ABS, only the water-cooled 1200s I think, which might be too much bike.

Here it is today vs when I bought it:
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2013 Thruxton EFI

Last edited by MyEvilTwin; 04-14-2019 at 11:00 AM.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 11:03 AM
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I have extended time on all 865s.
Thruxton is the better package but is more aggressive fitting overall. Benefits from the middle size front tire. T100 is biggest front tire and feels a bit more sluggish to handle. Mag wheel, which I still own is the best. Tubeless tire and small front tire makes it handle like a modern sportbike. Much easier for a first timer. Seat is lower as well. Would save some money getting one to put more money into aftermarket as well. Have aftermarket rearsets and clip on's on mine and still love it. The 865 is a great engine for reliability and power. Just enough power to get it all done, but not enough power to really get into some really silly choices..I guess. I will still own a T100 one day, just because of the classic looks and more cruisn' around feel. All the seats, exhaust and little trinkets pretty much fit all the modern 865s, so put whatever you like on them.
Basically the 865 is 100 bucks a HP if you want to improve performance. I would never have one without the airbox gut, bellmouth, o2 delete and aftermarket exhaust with a Triumph Twin Power tune. For 1000 bucks bumps HP up 10, and worth every penny.
Good luck in your search. Remember, nothing changed in the bikes from 09 to 2015, so there is no sense paying more for a "newer" one in that range, when you can save money and get the same bike earlier in the EFI years... granted the mileage is worth the price.
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------------------fight the good fight--------------------
2016 SILVER THRUXTON R 1972 Honda CB450
2013 Thruxton 08 FXDB 11 XL1200N SOLD
1972 Honda CB350 2009 Mag Bonny
2012 Daytona 675 SOLD 1975 CB360 SOLD
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 11:44 AM
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The T100 is really easy to ride. But before you start riding, make sure you take a Motorcycle Safety Course and learn how to ride. Then practice, practice, and practice some more. Especially if your as concerned with your safety as you said you are. Now speaking of safety. Make sure you buy and wear the best helmet you can afford. Then there is the jacket, some people like leather, others textile, for me, if it isn't Kevlar, I don't want it. A Kevlar jacket saved my hide a few years back. Next comes the pants, wear only ones that are fully lined with either Kevlar or something with very good anti-abrasive properties. Do your research. The last 2 things are boots and gloves. Gloves should have plenty of protection on the knuckles and palms. The boots should be high enough to protect your ankles.


After all that enjoy riding, its without a doubt one of the greatest thing you can do. I've been riding since 1968.

Ride safe,

Quentin
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 01:26 PM
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If you fell in love with the thruxton, buy it. Thats the only way to buy motorcycles, thats how i bought my thruxton and eleven years later i like it even more than when i bought it. Couldnt be happier with a motorcycle i think(just hope my other ones dont hear that..)
And you can always sell it if you hate it.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 02:58 PM
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Endorsing most the the comments above, I was going back and forth between the two but totally love the classic cafe racer style, even though you are giving up some comfort. I had to make some adjustments to the bars by flipping and rotating them, and now all is well, although most of my riding is shorter runs (less than two hours), plus commuting to work in the warmer dry weather.

So ultimately, depending on your use and your size, one may be better than the other. The beauty about these bikes is you can do so much modding to make them suit you and your needs, so you won't go wrong with either. At about 6 ft and 180 lbs I went for the Thruxton and no regrets. Also be aware nether has ABS, so you are being steered wrong! And it's impractical to try to add it....believe me I've looked into it!

As has been suggested, be sure to take a drivers education class and take it easy until you get some experience on how the bike handles and what to expect in the many conditions you will encounter. Drive defensively, and assume every vehicle, moving or stationary, is going to do something silly, or has simply not seen you. Not wanting to discourage you, but it's the only way you'll survive without an incident.

Best of luck, ride safe, Thruxty.

2013 Thruxton: Hagon 2810, Ricor Intiminators; STS; AI & O2 removed; 2>1 baffle remove; airbox snorkel and restrictor removed; TTP; Tail Tidy; Eastern Beaver Relay; LED Indicators; Tubeless Rim Conversion; Pirelli Angel GTs 110/80-18, 150/70-17
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 04:31 PM
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MyEvilTwin.... What seat cover is that? It looks great.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 07:13 PM
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You dont mention where you live which would be helpful, fill out your profile when you have a minute.
Some on here suggested getting your motorcycle endorsement, I've never heard of that and I've been ridding for longer then you've been alive. You say that the only thing around you is Harley, they usually have a training class, I dont think you have to have a HD to take it, it'd do you a lot of good to take one of these courses.
There is a lot of advice for modding your bike, dont worry about that stuff until you've had it for a while and spent some time ridding it. How would you know what you want to do to it until you've spent some time on it. Just looking at a bike and thinking about changes may lead to a lot wasted money.
I drove 1000 miles to pick my current bike up because it was far cheaper then anything I could get locally, probably cost me 2-300 dollars to go get it but the savings was somewhere close to $1200 plus for something similar in my area.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 10:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guildquin View Post
MyEvilTwin.... What seat cover is that? It looks great.
A ridiculously priced custom jobber, but it did come out nice, Thanks for the comment. Relicate leather "smokey burnout" distressed black against a black med grain leather. My photo skills suck looks way better live.

https://relicate.com/blogs/automotiv...stom-1932-ford
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