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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a '67 TR6C basket case and am excited to begin this adventure. I posed a few days ago my disappointment at discovering metal shavings in the drained oil and some of you congratulated me on my wonderful opportunity to get to know my bike on a very deep level. I have come to agree and after my 10 seconds of cussing, I began the work.

The engine is out. The shop manual I'm using says it can be removed with out stripping the rocker boxes, but I did not find this true for me.

<finally getting to my question - sorry>

While I've successfully rebuilt a few auto engines (coincidentally another 1967 Brit - an MGB) the books I'm looking at indicate I'll need some tools that I don't have. I have no press or any pullers, let alone specialized ones, etc.

I'm not opposed to buying the tools I need, but I sure don't want to get half way through and have to ship it off, or worse, get to the end, and have it not run.

I've talked to two folks about rebuilding it - one half way across the country, the other all the way across the country, and it's sounding like a $3,000 proposition. My wife (who you've met in previous posts) attempted to stifle her flinch, but gave me the green light anyways. I should point out I'm not restoring this bike. I want a bobber-hotrod (please don't hate me).

Two threads here: Me or someone else.

Someone else: Do any of you know of a competent rebuilder in the Northwest (Portland Salem Eugene)?

Me: What tools will I need beyond my sockets and wrenches that I already have, or things that I can't buy at the neighborhood Napa?

Thanks once again, Jon.
 

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I haven`t taken the engine out of mine.
I have bought some special tools...offhand, tappet block remover, valve guide tool, strobe...
The other stuff I managed to borrow...valve spring compressor, torque wrench and various others.
If you DIY, you will need to buy some tools. This is ongoing. Recently bought a set of UNF taps and dies, and some cycle thread taps.
The most handy cheap things I`ve found is: a bright LED pencil torch, a set of dentist-type picks, a small 1/4" ratchet, a set of cheap stiff artists brushes, modellers drill + accessories, vernier...

I would only say time is money, if you can do it, you aint paying someone else.
 

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If you have the time and the space, its the chance of a lifetime. Compared to an MG rebuild it has to be easier. As already mentioned, order a copy of Hughie Hancocks dvd, he uses many tools that can be made yourself and others that are obtained for specalist and are actually quite cheap. Like cam pullers and drifts. Running through his dvd, thats about it, he uses old cams for drifts but the same size drift could be turned up. He even fits the rings by fingers! no ring clamps. l stripped down a Kawasaki overhead cam twin using a Haynes and its still running, mind you it did not have a sludge trap!!.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Not too late to yell 'stop!'

Well, I've yet to hear anybody say "Send it to someone and let them rebuild it." so for starters, I'll take down the top and see what that looks like. I can make adjustments to my decision at that point, I suppose.

Thanks again.

Oh. Who shall I get to do the machine work should the cyl need re-bored, etc.?

Does anyone sell a rebuild parts kit? Gaskets, bearings, pistons, rings - as a complete package - or should I just open it up and see what I need on an individual basis?

I can't thank you all enough!

(not too late for someone to yell 'stop!')
 

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Tools are always worth the investment. And doing a
Triumph engine, is like any other interal combustion
engine, they are all pretty much the same. So you
have the skills to do the job. And finally if you do the
job you know how it was done. If someone else does
the job there will always be that question of any corners
cut?

Pookybear
 

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Well, I've yet to hear anybody say "Send it to someone and let them rebuild it." so for starters, I'll take down the top and see what that looks like. I can make adjustments to my decision at that point, I suppose.

Thanks again.

Oh. Who shall I get to do the machine work should the cyl need re-bored, etc.?

Does anyone sell a rebuild parts kit? Gaskets, bearings, pistons, rings - as a complete package - or should I just open it up and see what I need on an individual basis?

I can't thank you all enough!

(not too late for someone to yell 'stop!')
Im not going to tell you to stop, My Triumph is also a Hardtail Chopper,and I love them.Nuff said on that. scrounge around the internet for parts, Ebay is a good source, Ive had good luck with "vintagemotorts" off ebay out of Chicago, also "steadfastcyles" is good and out your way. www.domiracer.com has about anything and good prices,they are out of Ohio. your dealing with a 1930s engine technologically so dont be afraid, just remember they used KISS back then (Keep It Simple Stupid!)personally id just download a parts list and tear down your powerplant and check EVERYTHING ,and note is order, the most valuable tool at this stage is a micrometer/caliper,so you can check clearances, you can bore these engines quite a ways as the barrels are iron.BUT bore NOTHING until you get the pistons and send them with the barrels to the machine shop, that way they will bore your barrel properly to fit those pistons. gap your rings properly, and your upper end should be perfect, CLEAN the sludge trap, and ALWAYS perform the "wet sump test" on the oil pump, as the balls get junk on them and dont seal. all this info is readily available from old Triumph manuals or online for free or close. be patient and thorough and it will be fine. ,one last thing, break the job into "modules" like upper end, bottom end, etc. that way you wont forget something.Good Luck!
 

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if you have some skills with rebuilds/ most normal tools and some common sense rebuild your self. but I would send barrel and head off to get checked out and rebuilt by pro.

rebuilding these engines are easy and if you have any Q's just ask and someone here will steer you in the right direction
 

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if you have some skills with rebuilds/ most normal tools and some common sense rebuild your self. but I would send barrel and head off to get checked out and rebuilt by pro.

rebuilding these engines are easy and if you have any Q's just ask and someone here will steer you in the right direction

Can anyone recommended someone to send out for a top end rebuild. E.g. rebore/new pistions / valve job?

I.e. a shop familiar with vintage brit. bikes. For me Id prefer someone on the East Coast.

Cheers.
 

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For parts, you probably can't do better than Domiracer, I was dealing with them clear back in the early 1970's (i.e. they have been around longer than dirt, just like me). They may also be able to recommend an engine rebuilder. You should also look through the ads in "Motorcycle classics" and "Classic Racer" (both usually available at Barnes and Noble in the east) and "Walneck's Classic Cycle".

With all that said, metallurgy has come a long way since the Triumph twin was designed and more modern parts are available often at prices that are cheaper than stock replacement parts. I like Mahle or JE pistons, Pauter or Carrillo rods, and Ferrea valves, guides, springs, etc., but there are a lot of good choices. These suppliers may or may not have a listing for your engine, but if you can measure the original part they can often provide a suitable replacement.

High-tech coatings and surface treatments in strategic areas are also worth considering. Rocker arms on British twins are a weak spot, especially if they have been lightened. A treatment like Mikronite would about double their effective strength.

As others have said, most of the specialty tools required are simple drifts and pullers, most of which are readily available. Many of the special tools just make something quicker and/or are a specific version of a more common generic tool (i.e. pullers). Depending on the exact age of your bike a couple of good sets of Whitworth (i.e. British Standard) wrenches (one open end one combination) may be in order.

Good luck!
 

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Kev, you might have better luck and come out dollars ahead if you can find a hobbyist who has done bikes like yours before. A lot of guys would love to do it for a nominal sum. A lot of the repair shops now-a-days only look after detail in their billing and not their work. To do one of these engines right, I prefer old school, you need to have and take your time, you don't want to rush, double check everything and then recheck it again before proceeding. Nine times out of ten when you do it this way you will find something related to a repair item that also didn't quite meet the grade such as a damaged thread etc. This stuff is overlooked with an impact gun.
Just my two cents worth.
 

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Kev, you might have better luck and come out dollars ahead if you can find a hobbyist who has done bikes like yours before. A lot of guys would love to do it for a nominal sum. A lot of the repair shops now-a-days only look after detail in their billing and not their work. To do one of these engines right, I prefer old school, you need to have and take your time, you don't want to rush, double check everything and then recheck it again before proceeding. Nine times out of ten when you do it this way you will find something related to a repair item that also didn't quite meet the grade such as a damaged thread etc. This stuff is overlooked with an impact gun.
Just my two cents worth.
Thirdbike -- yes, that would be the best way forward for me. Trouble is I dont know anyone around these parts interested in these old bikes. Im not from that generation which probably doesnt help either -- Im used only to moden Jap/German bikes.

I would be more than happy to job this out to a local guy who has been thru it before. Prefer to sit in on the project though, when possible, so I can learn. I can bring the beer!

In fact, just being able to look at someones restored Bonnie 67-70 would be helpful. Just knowing how cables are routed, breather pipes setup, wiring etc. would be helpful since the manuals/parts books dont show these things.

Anyone in NC want some extra income?
 

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I'd be happy to take it on but unfortunately I'm just a bit too far away- thousand miles. One more thing Kev. If you do find someone, don't expect to see the job done in two or three weeks. Doing it right takes time. Good luck
 

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If ya decide to do this yourself, it's probably gonna be a one time experience... so investment in specialized tools is a big waste, unless you start chanting the Magic Mantra...

"....Harbor Freight is my FRIEND... Harbor Freight is my FRIEND!"

Dirt cheap tools, made by the ChiComs, not always the best quality... we ain't exactly talking Snap-On here... but they're good enough to get you through at least ONE engine rebuild before folding up on ya! :p

I'm lucky enough to have a Harbor Freight store locally... or maybe that's UNlucky enough. I can't go into that place without being $50 - $100 bucks lighter when I leave!

The online order from thier web page works just as well.


Mr. T.
 

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Loose,

I would strongly advise doing it yourself......
I recently holed a piston on my 79' Bonnie and decided to rebuild myself, luckily I had some time on my hands.

As for what specialty tools to get, I would strongly recommend a benchtop engine stand. I did a bunch of research and found the best priced one on ebay. Priceless really, it mounted to the bench and was able to spin it around and lock it in any position. Many of the so called specific tools can be achieved with a cheap puller set from harbor freight - really it's just finding the proper size and thread count (which a decent puller kit is bound to have). Did buy a couple custom pullers - clutch hub, timing pinion.... much of the others, i was able to figure out alternate ways.... just a little logic and creativity :)

The only thing I sent out, as previously recommended, was the cylinder hone and the head. A shop here in phoenix charged me $115 to blast the head and cylinder, bore the cylinder, and deck the head (had a roll in it). Here's their site: http://www.motorcyclemachine.com/Motorcyclemachine.com/Contact_Us_.html -- Montana in the summer....not too far from you....

Try to find someone that does vapor blasting - best looking and safest for your parts.

Here's an example of vapored parts http://blog.britstockers.com/blog/Johnnybobbersbuildpage

As to where to buy parts from, ebay can be a total crapshoot, all I was happy buying from there was the aforementioned engine stand and a complete gasket and seal kit. All the rest, I'd recommend getting from some of the reputable vendors of brit bikes.... Ones I've been happy with:

http://rabers.com/home.html
http://www.klempfsbritishparts.com/
http://northerneagle.ca/

This guy in Scotland was by far the best prices, and was very helpful:
http://www.grintriumph.com/

If you go forward with the rebuild, take a bunch of pictures - they will prove invaluable along the way. When I disassembled everything, I put all parts into those plastic containers with dividers and just sharpied what they were right on the box....just don't drop them :)

And I'll second a previous post that little brushes, a gun cleaning kit to clean threads, some dentist type picks, tiny LED light, and a small parts cleaner were essential. Oh---- and a lot of patience....

Here's the thread of my rebuild - you might find parts helpful....
http://www.triumphrat.net/member-s-restoration-and-rebuild-projects/101543-first-adventure-in-opening-up-my-79-t140e-bonnie.html

There's also a few youTube videos that were helpful.

Everything I just spouted off aside, you'll find a great wealth of friendly and extremely helpful people right here that are eager to share their extensive knowledge with a smile!

Keep us posted

Rick
 

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I'd be happy to take it on but unfortunately I'm just a bit too far away- thousand miles. One more thing Kev. If you do find someone, don't expect to see the job done in two or three weeks. Doing it right takes time. Good luck
TB: I think that is the key. It takes time. I need to adjust my mindset and realize this is a LONG TERM project. Bloody hell: the thing is over 40 years old--what do i expect!!!

Just gets frustrating when you get another batch of supplies and 25% dont fit and the rest you cant bolt on coz you just realized it depends on another part you overlooked.

I feel for you guys that restore bikes for a living: I doubt most buyers realize the work involved.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
All these replies are helping me - thanks!

Loose,

I would strongly advise doing it yourself......
I recently holed a piston on my 79' Bonnie and decided to rebuild myself, luckily I had some time on my hands.

As for what specialty tools to get, I would strongly recommend a benchtop engine stand. I did a bunch of research and found the best priced one on ebay. Priceless really, it mounted to the bench and was able to spin it around and lock it in any position. Many of the so called specific tools can be achieved with a cheap puller set from harbor freight - really it's just finding the proper size and thread count (which a decent puller kit is bound to have). Did buy a couple custom pullers - clutch hub, timing pinion.... much of the others, i was able to figure out alternate ways.... just a little logic and creativity :)

The only thing I sent out, as previously recommended, was the cylinder hone and the head. A shop here in phoenix charged me $115 to blast the head and cylinder, bore the cylinder, and deck the head (had a roll in it). Here's their site: http://www.motorcyclemachine.com/Motorcyclemachine.com/Contact_Us_.html -- Montana in the summer....not too far from you....

Try to find someone that does vapor blasting - best looking and safest for your parts.

Here's an example of vapored parts http://blog.britstockers.com/blog/Johnnybobbersbuildpage

As to where to buy parts from, ebay can be a total crapshoot, all I was happy buying from there was the aforementioned engine stand and a complete gasket and seal kit. All the rest, I'd recommend getting from some of the reputable vendors of brit bikes.... Ones I've been happy with:

http://rabers.com/home.html
http://www.klempfsbritishparts.com/
http://northerneagle.ca/

This guy in Scotland was by far the best prices, and was very helpful:
http://www.grintriumph.com/

If you go forward with the rebuild, take a bunch of pictures - they will prove invaluable along the way. When I disassembled everything, I put all parts into those plastic containers with dividers and just sharpied what they were right on the box....just don't drop them :)

And I'll second a previous post that little brushes, a gun cleaning kit to clean threads, some dentist type picks, tiny LED light, and a small parts cleaner were essential. Oh---- and a lot of patience....

Here's the thread of my rebuild - you might find parts helpful....
http://www.triumphrat.net/member-s-restoration-and-rebuild-projects/101543-first-adventure-in-opening-up-my-79-t140e-bonnie.html

There's also a few youTube videos that were helpful.

Everything I just spouted off aside, you'll find a great wealth of friendly and extremely helpful people right here that are eager to share their extensive knowledge with a smile!

Keep us posted

Rick
Rick, Kev, Pooky, Paul and the rest! What can I say? The response from this forum is without a doubt the most helpful I've ever experienced. I work with computers for a living (complete tear-down and rebulid is a concept that works in both worlds) and spend some time in the computer how-to forums, and, well... this group of responders is by far the friendliest, most thorough and just the best.

Thank you all.

I found a highly recommended shop just 22 miles from here http://wheelsmithcycle.com/
I'll be taking him some work tomorrow (head and cylinder block) - we'll see how it goes.

Additionally there is a salvage yard in Portland (Oregon) 70 miles north which I'm also going to visit and see what they're all about.
Western Cycle Salvage‎ - Portland

If anyone has had 'danger - danger. Don't go in there' bad experiences with either of the above, Please let me know.

The ignition debate:

My '67 TR6C came with 'Energy-Transfer' style ignition. Five-wire alternator, points, capacitors, coils headlight and tail light - that's about it. No battery, no keyed ignition switch - just a kill button.

Sounds like moving to an electronic system - 3-phase alt, solid-state ignition and battery is a $500-600 deal. Yes?

Will I be unable to run my bike on the street with the ET setup? Or is it just so much trouble that the electronic package is a must?

Thanks again!

Jon D>
 

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You can run the ET setup on the street, just that you'll be dealing with relatively dim lighting, and no lights when the bike is not running.

To convert:

Wiring harness
Battery
Ignition
Alternator & rectifier/regulator
Switches
New bulbs (recommended)

$600 is a fair budget for all of the above, if you do all of the work yourself.
 
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