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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I'm looking at a 2009 Bonnie SE this coming Monday, EFI, 8000 miles, looks (from photos) to have been cared for. I'm well versed in evaluating used bikes but looking to the collective here to advise on anything specific to that year or model that I should pay extra attention to. I know tires are a slight challenge. Anything else? Thanks!
 

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Tyres? these bikes are bullet proof. as long as it hasn't sat up for too long and it shifts well , no scuffs on bar ends or pegs there are brilliant bikes The stock types are fine, the SE has cast wheels so 17/17s are quite easy to find but they are so subjective, one brand will suit one person but he hated by another. These bikes are a pleasure to own and cheap to maintain.
 

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Personally, I'd ask if the bike has a starting problem. The bikes are notorious for this issue. If they say, "Nope, never had a problem", I might be a little suspicious.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the inputs, everyone. :doublethumb

Turns out it wasn't an SE but a straight Bonnie with some upgrades; tank pads, fly screen, Triumph "High Flow Silencers". Also had a brand new battery that read a bit low at rest; he didn't ride enough to keep it charged and didn't have a battery maintainer but it was only a couple of months old so it'll be fine. The guy just didn't know what he had and was first to admit it. It also didn't have 8000 miles on it, it was slightly less than 3500 miles! Despite being badly in need of fluid changes and having a low battery, it started instantly and ran great, idled and accelerated smoothly, brakes were solid. Body was in outstanding condition; garage kept, not a single scratch or ding on it. He just rarely rode it. For 10 years.

Naturally, I bought it. :grin2: He was uncommonly reasonable when I pointed out the issues and the price dropped a lot. Tires were original (10 years old!) so I was a bit nervous riding it home. No noticeable dry rot but the rubber was pretty hard.

Already had a recent oil and filter change and passed state inspection (how confidence-inspiring is that!?). So now...tires, brake line flush, fork oil replacement, siphon out old gas and refill with fresh gas and injector cleaner, a bath, chain clean and lube and it'll be road-worthy.

I'll be back. :smile2:
 

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Very nice! Good luck with your new bike!

Rick G
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks again, all. Tires (Conti Road Attack 3s), speed bleeders, fluids and cleaning supplies on order. :wrenchin
 

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Nice bike. As others mentioned, they’re bulletproof. I recently mounted Conti Road Attacks on my 2014 in original sizes. Made a hell of difference. Bike handles way better than a basic bike like this should!
 

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Based on the wheels that is an SE.

I have a 2010. Just a great bike and the SE being a bit lower slung it handles great.

I'd replace the air filter too. Its dry like the rest of it.

There was an SE with a single gauge and a version with a two gauge cluster. Other than that just some cosmetic stuff. No real difference that I know of.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
When the previous owner added the hi-flow pipes, I'm pretty sure they put a K&N air filter in but a good reminder to check. I'll be sure to clean and oil it.

When all the parts and supplies come in, I'll be basically breaking down the whole bike to clean and inspect. Just ordered SW-Motech crash bars and a Denali ignition relocation bracket (what were they thinking?!). Saving the fork oil replacement until I check out the suspension once I get it on the road. I usually find the stock springs way too soft for my taste and put in linear (Sonic Springs) springs with a sag setup. This is almost as much fun as riding! :grin2:

There's no "SE" on the side panel (just "Bonneville"), no tach and no rear rack. Also, the previous owner added the knee pads and the fly screen. Original bill of sale doesn't say "SE" and it's not called out by the VIN. So, if it is an SE, it's a really poor excuse for one. :laugh2:
 

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Discussion Starter #15
A recent revelation about the actual model of this bike. I entered the VIN at Triumph's recall site to see if there were any outstanding recalls and the site returned "Bonneville A1" as the model. Googled for A1 and came up with a video from early 2010 of the exact bike. Wondering if the A1 was a UK model that got shipped to the US. Anyone ever hear of a Bonneville A1?

 

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A bit late to the party but if 5th gear whines/howls you will soon learn these bikes are not "bullet proof". Cost me $$ to learn this lesson. Hope yours is okay. Enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
A bit late to the party but if 5th gear whines/howls you will soon learn these bikes are not "bullet proof". Cost me $$ to learn this lesson. Hope yours is okay. Enjoy!
What was the source of the 5th gear howl that cost you $$?

The 15 mile ride bringing it home was the last it's been ridden and I never got to 5th gear but the 1st 4 were smooth and flawless. Have it thoroughly stripped down for maintenance, cleaning and mods so probably won't be on the road for another week.
 

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5th gear howl the result of pitting on face of the output cog. The pitting was very linear on nearly every tooth and was likely the precursor to failure with teeth being spit every which way. Now that would have been epically $$!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
What model and year did that happen in? Helpful if you put it in your profile and/or sig.
And is thought to be a common material defect? I've done a lot of digging and haven't come across this as a common issue. What's the theory of the cause of the pitting?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Put in speed bleeders and flushed the brake lines yesterday. The front and rear reservoirs were on the dark-colored side but what I found when I opened them was more shocking. Both reservoirs were bone dry! The dark coloring was just staining on the plastic from the ancient brake fluid that used to be there. The previous owner was lucky; they both could have failed. I ran 2 full bottles of fresh brake fluid through the lines.

Today I flushed and filled the forks. Actually, was surprised at the good condition of the old fork oil; it was pretty clear in both forks. Fork seals are obviously good. Flushed a full bottle of fork oil through each tube.

Also installed the rear rack. I may have gotten the last new one in the country. Dealer I ordered from found out he didn't actually have one (and no one else I contacted did, either) but did a dealer search and located one elsewhere which turned out to be a good find. Got the exhaust polished up and back on.

Next up are regulator and ignition relocation, new [dual] horns (driven by relay), replace all bulbs (except headlight) with LED bulbs, replace flasher relay for LED compatibility and finally, install crash guards.

I might actually get to ride it this week. :smile2:
 
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