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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was looking for a (new) Bonneville, and came across a legend for sale. I had never looked into buying one, but a red 99 legend sparked my interest. Could anyone give me advice on buying a used legend? This will be my first Triumph, so I'm not sure what to look for as far as pros/cons/etc. Any advice would be great. I'm 6'1" and 170lbs.
 

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Bonneville is a much more leisurely ride than a Legend. The Thruxton is supposed to be sporty with 10hp extra over a Bonnie - not compared to my Legend it's not. Admittedly I've a few (mostly low $) mods...

Best of both worlds, the low end torque of a twin (tho' didn't think Thrux had much..) and the top end of a four.

Most folks here are serious triple fans, me included, (unsurprisingly :D) but with good reason imo.

With basic (easy) maintenance these triples are reliable & rock solid. Any serious issues were ironed out before the Legend variant came along.

Lots of info here for the searching, on any particular aspects you'd like to know more about.

Cheers
Mike
 

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I was in your shoes two summers ago. Hadn't ridden in 25 years, wanted a bike, used to have a Honda 550, but for some reason wanted a Triumph. I had never ridden on one or seen one other than pictures, but had my heart set on a red and black Bonnie T100. Then along came this red 99 Legend at a local car dealership with less than 4000 miles on it. Like you, I had never heard of the model and I knew nothing about the history with factory fires, new owner, etc., but I did my homework. $3500 later, that Legend was mine, and it is the best $3500 that I have ever spent! Quality is excellent, engine is over built, and as a package, it does everything I want very well. The engine is the real gem, and if you like to do your own wrenching, this is the bike for you! Very old school, and no expensive fancy electronic tools needed. Not that it needs lots of work, but tweaking and maintenance are all there if you want to enjoy it. Although not an advantage over the Bonnie, this forum is probably the best perk of all, as there are some real wizards who hang out here, and basically anything you can ask has been answered, or will be in short order with a post. Not just maintenance, but lots of other good info, too. Get the Legend, it's rarer and not made anymore, and it's water cooled to boot!

PS - Look at the photos of the triples - they are all beautiful bikes!
 

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One thing to check out before you buy a Legend. The lower seat height as compared to the Thunderbird can make for a cramped riding position for taller riders. Other than that, it is a real gem of a bargain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I don't know much about seat height/riding position. I'm just over 6 feet tall, how cramped are we talking? The bike I found for sale is over an hour away, so I haven't been able to sit on it yet.
 

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I'm 6'2" and I don't have that cramped feeling.
Pros for Triumph: It might steal your heart
Cons for Triumph: It might steal your heart
 

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I'm 5'11'' with a 30" inseam, and I put lower pegs to get more leg room. I don't think it is so much how tall you are, but how flexible you are. In favor of the lower seat, both feet are flat on the ground at stops - none of that tippy toe stuff.
 

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I am lucky enough to own both a Bonneville and a Thunderbird, both nice bikes but given the choice the Thunderbird comes out first if only for that triple howl, very comfortable and I like to have a big tank between my legs, chrome is getting harder to find and when it does come available its very expensive, you would enjoy either bike to sum up.
 

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I was in the same boat last September - looking for a Bonneville, and bought a red 99 Legend. I put it up for most of the winter, but managed to put 1,000 miles on it since then. I'm very happy with it. You won't find as many aftermarket parts or accessories as you would for a Bonnie, and, since they stopped making the triples several years ago OEM parts are getting harder to find, but they're available if you keep your eyes open on the web.
I'm 5-9" and it fits me fine, but I can see where the pegs/seat setup might be a little cramped for a taller person. I'm used to having highway pegs so that I can alternate my position, and there are a few options available for them, but I haven't decided which one to go with.
I paid $3400 for mine (with 3,800 miles on it), and, all things considered, I think it was a bargain.
 

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Couple of considerations

I'm 5'11" and must not be that flexible anymore as the seating position was a little cramped for me. I put on highway pegs so I can move around, a T-Bird seat (again flatter so I can scoot back), and can raise myself another inch with a gel cushion. Now it is fine.
This is actually a pretty rare beast here as not that many were sold originally. Only 16 99's have gone on e-bay in the last two years (14 of the 2000's and 7 2001's) and that is why some of the aftermarket and accessories just aren't there.
Now the good news is that a resourcefull group such as this has a low dollar solution for many of those wants and a high dollar solution for all of them!
It is a great bike to ride and I would say beyond a doubt my all time favorite. You should check it out!
 

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Good bike. Modular platform means you can exchange many parts from the sport models available at the time. Easy and cheap to make performance mods, as a result! A little more top heavy than a Bonnie, but at your height that should not be a problem.

How many miles on the bike? Expect that if it has set up a while, the carbs will need a tear down and cleaning. Consider going for a set of heavy duty Nology coils, and you should have a fine, trouble free ride.
 

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if you are worried about the seat height there is solution that will make you money. In Europe there are plenty of riders of low statue i.e short a**es , who will pay a premium for a Legend subframe and exchange their Tbird subframe for it. The guy who sold me one of his TBS's swapped his for a Legend and will do other riders if they have a Legend subframe. The problem is there is a shortage (excuse the pun) of lower Legend subframes, hence the premium price.you may have to swap seats too but as long as they are in good shape its no problem in fact you might gain as TBS's have the easier key locking seat rather than the awful bolted down seat!.
 

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If seat height is a concern, I don't the the Bonneville sits any higher than the Legend.

I've ridden both. As far as power and handling the Legend wins.

They both have retro styling, however the Bonneville has a more traditional Triumph engine configuration.

The Bonneville is lighter.

If you have an agressive riding style the Legend is the way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks so much for your help guys. The bike has approx 15,000 miles on it, and he wants $3000. From the pictures it looks very well kept, comes with triumph sissy bar and triumph soft bags. Unfortunately I think he might sell it to someone local before I can make the 2 hour drive to look at it. I'm praying the buyer will flake. I will be bringing cash with me tomorrow, if all goes well I will be riding home on my first bike...a Triumph!

Seriously want to thank everyone for the insight. A week ago all I knew about Triumph was how cool the bikes looked (and that I wanted one). I've learned alot from this forum and plenty of research. I feel like now I can make an fairly educated investment. If this red legend slips through my fingers, I already have my eye on a green TT. To think I was considering a honda shadow when I stumbled across the red legend. :confused::confused::confused:
 

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I'll add my ha'penneth,

My first "big" bike was a 2001 red Legend TT. It was fantastic, if it hadn't been stolen and written off I'd still have it today. Rock solid and reliable. More than I can say for the TBS i replaced it with ;)

I'm 6' tall with 34" inseam and about 13 stone. Only on really long rides on cold days did I feel the cramp in my hips. I did about 40,000 happy, comfortable miles on that bike before it got nicked. And that really isn't a lot of miles for these triple engines.

Get the Legend. You'll wear your lips out with the grinning.

Wayne
 

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If this red legend slips through my fingers, I already have my eye on a green TT.
The Black & Red ones are fastest tho' the red & green ones are both pretty cool...:D

(amazed nobody beat me to it here..lol :D)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just out of curiosity, what is the difference between a legend and a legend TT? I've seen both, but can't tell the difference.
 
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