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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
New to the site and the brand. Need info on a 95 Thunderbird (the good/the bad) as I am possibly acquiring one with 8300 original miles. What were the major issues (if any) with these. and what should I be looking for. I ride an St1300 sport tourer and look forward to the different riding style offered by the triumph.

Thanks in advance
 

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The biggest issue with the '95 T Bird is the dreaded sprag clutch. If it has not been replaced with an upgraded clutch, then you may need to do it. It's an expensive upgrade.

The clutch I am talking about is part of the electric start mechanism.It engages when the starter is pushing the motor, and disengages when the motor fires.

Some clutches will last the life of the bike, others fail. Mine failed at 40,000km (25,000 miles).


In the early thunderbirds, there was an inspection cover that could be removed to replace this clutch. The next design iteration was an enclosed engine/ gearbox case. Then they upgraded the sprag clutch. The 95 model fell between the last two modifications.

Apart from that, I love my '95. Comfortable, powerful, flexible, pretty good handling, and very reliable.

Cheers,
Neil.
 

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all of the above i agree with,another issue seems to be the carbs,if the bike has been left for any lenth of time,so as long as it starting and running fine should be ok ,it a very low mls bike so its prob not seen a lot of use over the yrs,if you dont have any service history id say thats the first thing u need to do or at very least a oil and filters change,ive had my t/bird just over a year now and i just love her to bits,apart from the service issues ive had no major probs,and if i have the guys in here have a lot of knowladge and have helped me out and i cant thank them enough,welcome to the forum and i hope you enjoy your bike as much as we guys in here do,i dont think you regret buying her if you go down that line good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I am getting it from the second owner who purchased it a little over a year ago with 3300 miles. He put 5000 miles on it since then he advised that the front forks were upgraded the bike was serviced at a triumph dealer, new rear tire, passenger backrest and luggage rack, new battery, triumph oem off road mufflers and original mufflers.

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
95 thunderbird

Contacted local Triumph dealer they want $1600 to replace the sprag clutch, I guess on the 95 the cases need to be split. anyway it is not a problem now so I guess I will take a chance that I wont have the problem. Current owner was aware of the cost when he bought it and made sure the battery stayed on a tender when parked. I am sure that helps but I bet even the brits used some inferior parts along the way. I will keep this updated when I finally go and pick it up.
 

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Hi,

I have a '95 Thunderbird, and have enjoyed it over many years. It has a good spec, being the initial year. The engine covers and wheel rims are alloy, while the later years went to chrome. Also it has eccentric chain adjusters, which I find easy to use. The early models also had a higher seat frame and shorter wheelbase, than the later years.

It is true that some have been affected by the sprag clutch problem, but then there are many manufacturers' models that have also been hit (try a google search). The secret does appear to be keeping the battery well charged, and thankfully I have not had a problem (fingers crossed). And yes, the crank cases have to be split if it has to be replaced - hence the high cost.

Not a problem, but originally they had restricted inlet rubbers which kept the power down, although you may find these have already been replaced by the unrestricted ones (the restricted rubbers have dimples in their sides). It may be worth checking the front brake hose, as this was originally a rubber hose, which should now have been replaced by a braided brakeline (from the later Thunderbird model/Thunderbird Sport). The headlight performance can be improved by fitting a Zeon bulb or similar, and the front brake performance improved by fitting sintered pad - although neither are essential. Other than that, a good maintenance regime takes care of everything else.

The important thing is to find one that is in good condition, and has been maintained. I think you will enjoy owning it.

Ciao,
Geoff
 

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I also have a 95 Tbird (in the same blue) and have owned it a couple of years now, it's done just over 19k miles. I think it had around 13k on it when I bought it from memory.

I bought mine off an ex colleague who moved to Hungary and wasn't using the bike so had it shipped back. It hadn't been used for a couple of years. The only issue I had with it when I bought it was it started mis-firing, but a set of Nology coils, new leads and plugs sorted that out and it's been fine ever since. The gear change was also a little stiff, but after an oil and filter change and once I'd put some miles on it, it soon loosened up nicely.

I've just finishing cafe'ing it now too with parts from jaguartvr on here and it looks great in that colour. Will post pics when I get chance.
 

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Yeah, pretty good bikes, other than the sprag. Listen for any "clacking" noise during start up - that is the only signal you get that it is starting to go.

Alternator bolt issue occurs occasionally too - you'll hear that during operation, a rattling noise at low idle is how mine perpetuated.

All other issues are pretty minor. Carbs are good, often neglected. Get a good AGM battery, as the charging system can be hard on lead/acid types.

Where are you in Fort Mill? I used to live in Baxter Village. There is a good bike night down at the Grapevine...
 

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95 tbird

Great all around bike! Triumph keeps introducing new models, but I am still waiting for them to introduce an updated version of my 95 Thunderbird. The T-100 Bonneville is a step backwards in size and power. The R3 is over the top in size. The new Thunderbird is a nice bike if you like the cruiser riding position. What I want is a 95 TBIRD, with the 1050 motor.
 
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