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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
Heeeeeez Baaaaack!

For a guy who is self (under) employed like Mecchanica I sure seem to be busy. Escorted elderly mom and handicapped sister to beautiful Washington State, arriving Seatac just in time for the wind and rainstorm of the century. A-clowns at Budget didn't have my SUV (reserved weeks earlier) and as I refused to accept a Kia-can replacement I had to wait over two hours, destroying my plans to be out of Seattle/Tacoma before rush hour and setting us out at the heights of both rush hour and the meteorological unpleasantness. What should have been a one hour drive morphed into three hours of bumper to bumper, 40-60 mph wind, torrential rain hell. Two hours after we got to our hotel, the power went out and wasn't restored for two days.

Seriously, it wasn't a bad trip over all and seeing family I don't often get to see made it all worthwhile. I won't bother with details, but visiting family (once we got back from Washington), holiday errands, and numerous other chores (for example, I gave up an apt I was keeping in Indy, and had to move a bunch of stuff up here, which now must be sorted) have kept me too busy!

I did find time to plow through Bacon's Triumph restoration book. Really good stuff, but truthfully, I had expected more organization, charts, etc. which I think would be very useful. I stumbled across a book called Triumph Bonneville Super Profile while browsing through the local library, (1985, John Nelson, author). It is a thin, large format book about 60 pages, with a history of the Bonnie and a bunch of great old period photos. It also has the very chart I though would have most helped the Bacon book, displaying the various changes to the annual models chronologically. I'm gonna try to scan it and can it.

I want to thank everyone who has contributed to this thread. I'll say it again, the depth and breadth of the knowledge some of the members have is truly impressive. The helpfulness, the good nature and the good humor displayed takes me back to a time when bikers were a much smaller and more fraternal bunch who never failed to salute each other on the road. Those days are gone; waving to every person you see on a bike (I can't bring myself to call them all bikers) now would cause a repetitive motion injury. With the much greater numbers have come some folks who just don't appreciate bikes and riding for the same reasons I do.

Sometime soon I am going to re-read the stuff in this thread and try to do a little summary. I am sure it will spawn more questions. I have a few stored up already from all that reading by flashlight on vacation.

Speedmaster, I don't get over to the Demotte area very often, but I do use the DNR rifle range over at J-P occasionally. We'll have to get together for a beer.

Ah, its great to be back!
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
I have been giving some thought to the "ultimate Triumph" concept. Seems to me as if there are different ways to look at it. First is an individual definition; the ultimate Triumph is what you think it is. Your bike, whatever it is, or how you would have it, if you could do whatever you wanted to it. Fixing it up so it suits you makes it "ultimate" to you. An "ultimate" daily driver would be different from an "ultimate" barhopper, streetfighter,backroads blaster, or off-roader, etc.

Then there is the concours restoration definition. The "ultimate" would be a perfectly restored to original specs bike.

Then there is the hybrid/mongrel, with sub categories:

(1) "all-Triumph" "ultimate". Pick the best of features, but stick to Triumph parts only. This category appeals to both the Triumph purist and high performance fan in me.

(2) "all-vintage" "ultimate" Not necessarily only Triumph parts, but only vintage aftermarket parts, stuff that was available back in the day, or their modern equivalents. Like Joe Hunt magnetos, or Routt 750 kits. Would include Seeley and Rickman frame bikes.

(3) Not sure what to call this category, maybe "anything goes" "ultimate". Start with a Triumph engine, and do whatever you want, using whatever parts you want.



The whole idea of "ultimate Triumph" is appealing to me because there is unlimited room for debate; a great bench-racing topic. Pop a few cold ones, and argue as long as you want. Anybody have an idea for a different category, or a different way to approach the subject?

I am going to try to review this thread and try to put together my own notion of the "ultimate" Triumph, which will fall somewhere in the hybrid category. Maybe alternative versions, in the "all-Triumph" and "all vintage" categories. I've been having a lot of fun just thinking about it.
 

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This thread pushed me over the edge. Started on my Triton. Picked up a Norton slimline featherbed frame with a title last weekend, going to be powder coated black. Got a line on an NOS Roadholder front fork, but also found an outfit that builds/rebuilds Roadholder front forks with some damping modifications that were sorely needed in the stock forks to keep them from bottoming out internally. They even make billet triple trees. Torn on which way to go. Either way it will be chrome and black with shrouded springs. Rear shocks will be shrouded Hagon's in chrome and black. Got a line on a '68 Bonnie motor. Going to hot rod it with a 750 big bore kit and after market rods/pistons. Thinking between 9.0/1 and 9.5/1 compression ratio. Going to do a lot of the mods suggested by Mechannica. Going to run an oil cooler. Wondering what year head and what cam I should use, and if there's any point to doing head work and going with larger than stock valves, etc. Dual swept back exhaust with Goldie mufflers. Going to run two Mikuni's. Want it to run like a scalded dog, but it has to run on 91 octane pump gas and be streetable. Got the info on converting from a four to a five speed transmission. Been told that there's not much difference in the final gear ratio between the four and five speeds and wondering if there's a way to install I taller gear for fifth gear as a sort of poor man's overdrive. Belt drive primary. Going to run 12V negative ground and hopefully a Boyer or similar ignition, Halogen headlight, discrete LED turn signals and LED brake light in period tail light lens. Clip-ons, rear sets. Manx replica rear brake and a Grimica 280mm 4LS front brake operated by a dual cable brake lever off a '72 Suzuki GT750. Shouldered alloy rims, 19 inch in front and either 18 or 19 inch on the rear. Haven't decided on the gauges/brackets yet. Got a near mint Atlas swingarm, but thinking about either bracing it or modifying an aluminum swingarm off a '81-'82 Suzuki GS 1100, if it's possible (I know three great welders). Custom alloy chain guard. Like to run a wider rear tire than stock, but going to have to figure out all the geometry regarding the drive chain, etc. There's a place in England that makes wider square tube swingarms for featherbed frames, but they're not very aesthetically appealing. Alloy gas tank, oil tank/battery box painted silver with black and red pinstripes, and single seat with red piping from Unity Equip in England. Black fenders, haven't decided between alloy or fiberglass but leaning toward fiberglass. Scorpio alarm system.

I'd appreciate any advice I can get on options regarding head work, cam, and valve train.

Never say die! All it takes is time and money, right?
 

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oooo:

I wish you would copy your progress posts over to my Triumph & Norton forums, there are a bunch of guys who would love to keep up with that.

Norton Rider's Collective
Triumph Bonnevilles
Custom Bikes Forum

Sounds like you finally reached "critical mass", but I'll ask one more time - you want to sell that QLS brake? hee hee

TAKE LOTS OF PHOTOS, especially starting out. take pix of your piles of parts, before & after shots of chrome & powdercoated stuff, etc.

Get ready to spend between $2500 & $3000 on a hot lump that will be trusty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
GPZ, I think a Harley with Triumph badges falls outside the definition of "ultimate Triumph". Needs a Triumph motor. I guess you could put a Triumph patent plate on an old 883 iron head, but it really isn't in keeping with the concept!

Ooo, love the Triton build. Please do as GPZ suggests and document your progress well. I think some of your questions have been covered here and on other posts. I have taken to reviewing the posts by Mecchanica and GPZ, Commando and a few others when a question pops into my head. If you click on the handles, there is an option to see their more recent posts. Very helpful. And I have spent a few cold winter nights here with a beer, just trolling the old threads, also very helpful and entertaining too.
 

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olde:

Just kidding, you know.

My late buddy, Mike "the bike" Whitesides (he didn't steal the nickname, friends who had no clue who Hailwood was used to call him that), had a new little Chinese bike he bought to teach his wife how to ride, one of those V-twins that looks like a Honda Magna with both pipes kinda stubby on one side. Well, he got some MV Agusta decals and stuck them on the tank. He also got a pair of HD badges and stuck them on another Chinese bike, a little vertical twin, with remote starter on the key-clicker.

He did it all in fun, he was that kind of guy.

He definitely knew his Triumphs, Nortons, HDs and Hodakas, he and his dad had a shop that handled those 3 makes over the years, starting in the 50s.
 

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just for the record my ideal combo that i've been dreaming about for many years is a
set of cases that look stock but are wider to allow bigger bore pistons,bore/stroke ratio with wider crank
and a high port head that fits that looks like a bonny head but has
port flow like a HEMI head and dusts the handlebars off imports
 

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Ultimate Triumph mine was the one I sold to get married . 750 oil mainframe Bonnie.
Engine- 10.75 to 1 compression positions
Head machined to take norton valves
Cams standard inlet .exhaust cam 're machined inlet cam which is the same profile as a spitfire ex cam
Timing gears skimmed and lightened
Morgo oil pump
Hole drilled in top of bottom end to squirt oil on underside of piston.Don't do his unless you have high capacity pump unless you want a seized engine.
Racing valve springs
650 Bonnie clutch and duplex drive chain

CARBS amal 930 mk1 jetted to 240 main jet can't remember what size pilot . Bell mouths with s steel tea trainers clipped over them,had a scary moment when I sucked in a humble bee which held the slide open,surprising how fast a Bonnie will go on one cylinder at half throttle , hence tea strainer.
Frame standard with seat lowered 2 inches footpegs moved back 4 inches
Suspension forks standard shocks hagon
Wheels standard with alloy rims
Sprocket dural 5 teeth less than standard and it still pulled through rev range faster than standard Bonnie.
Ignition by Mr Boyer. Spark plug holes welded up and new hole cut in center of head to take smaller racing plugs
Tank off of early oil in frame model the one with a seam down the middle in black and gold.
Handle bars Vincent straights copy.
Spin on oil filter kit and trident oil cooler.
Do I regret selling it ....... f...ing right I do !!!! But I am still married and have been for 30 years so it's not all bad. Which I hadn't were this now I have pissed myself right off
 

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The Triumph T140D Special (US spec) (1979 Margaret Thatcher Special) is clearly the best Bonnie ever made !!
The only thing that I would change is the gearing to make it better for modern Motorways. I would put a T21 on the front and a T45 on the rear.

Regards, Frank
 

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67 Triumph frame with 78 engine and disc brake wire wheels. Mikunis 32 mm carbs, 12v neg . Ground upgraded ignition and rectifier. Stock head pipes to short megaphones. If I was using all Triumph parts I'd go points, concentrics, and 67 mufflers. 67 TR6-R tank , alloy fenders. Non stock I'd go alloy rims, SS spokes. Alloy rear sprocket. 67 handlebars.
 
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