TRIUMPH, MAKING SHORT PEOPLE LOOK TALLER SINCE 1907
Taking a grinder to Britain's motorcycling heritage. Disclaimer This "Blog" represents the thoughts and actions of the author. It is created for academic interest and entertainment only. It is neither intended or implied that any person reading any article contained within, imitates or recreates any work described.
Going to be building a swinging arm bike for the Trip Out Biker Build Off. It'll make a change and there was a '56 Thunderbird frame looking to be turned into a bike.
Ain't really used to setting up rear muddies on these new fangled bikes with suspendies on the rear, all too bloody complicated when things can move around back there. How to mount it so things don't come together during that Great Escape moment jumping the hedge at Scald End Farm?
The eye centers on the shocks are 330 mm, a quick phone call to Hagon's revealed that the max travel is 80mm, sooo the shortest the shocks will ever be is 250mm. Puck knocked up some temporary struts at 250mm and they were put on in place of the shocks.
The Enfield wheel in there is a 19" rather than the 18 that will go in, this means the muddie can be sat straight on top of the tyre and the mounts measured and fitted where it sits, giving the proper clearance when the shocks go back on.
Sniped a lovely gearbox off of the Bay of broken dreams, got all the signs of being rebuilt, the seller reckons it was under his bench for 30 years.Slotted in a treat and shows the frame is pretty straight.
Slipped in a set of 10 degree raked yokes using taper roller bearings, far easier, but in some ways less satisfying than pissing about with greasy balls!
Like one of the master chefs seen on the idiot's lantern Todd Asin can take the simplest of ingredients, available to everybody, yet somehow blend it into something very special. The frame has had a small stretch in the lower rails to straighten out the neck to rear axle line, other than that the running gear is pretty much stock other than the springer front end.
When Triumph introduced the 650 Trophy in 1956 it was called the Trophy- Bird, whether this was to cash in on the bikes that desert Racers had been putting together themselves while waiting for a 650 competition bike is unknown.
This is one of those bikes, an original conversion, shown here as bought by Bill in Oregon back in 1981. A 1950 6T Thunderbird motor fitted into a TR5 Trophy rigid frame.
The early TR5 frame is noticeably smaller and lighter than the normal 500/650 rigid frame, constructed of smaller diameter tubing without some of the cast lugs at the frame joints. Notice the front engine plate arrangement with the dynamo sitting through where the normal front down tube extends to meet the front horns of the rear section.
Sadly Bill sold the bike on to make way for other exotica and it was disassembled, with the new owner restoring back to a normal TR5 Trophy, which is also a highly desirable and rare Triumph in it's own right but it would have been nice for this snippet of history to have survived.
Absolutely brimming with desirable bits, period McCandless swinging arm rear end, 1 gallon oil tank, original 4" removable end cap megaphones......and the rarest of rarities in the Triumph world the fabled bronze head. This was the first time I had seen one on the road and being used,and being used with some vigour I should add.
My plan was to write a post about this piece of cylinder topping exotica, but searching the web reveals information on them is as thin on the ground as the heads themselves.
Produced as an optional extra 1n 1939 and early 1940, up until the factory in Coventry was destroyed by the Luftwaffe.
It is believed that slightly fewer than 300 were produced during this period.
The last time I saw one for sale went for £3,200 on the bay of fools about 5 years ago.
If anybody can fill in any of the gaping holes in this description please get in touch.
Here's another couple of the Ton-Ten on the way back from this year's Trip Out. 1954 motor in a '49 Tiger 100 frame and running a Factory Metalworks springer front end. Front hub is Tiger Cub fitted with a trials alloy brake plate, and that really improved things there's definitely some slowing down action going on when the lever is hauled upon.
There will be more details on the brake plate when I can sort it out.
After a lifetime of messing about with all this old shit,your tastes tend to broaden. Here at BIW our feet fall into many camps, custom, flat trackers, restos and even the occasional cafe racer! John, over the other side of the pond has reached the same point and produces a damn fine blog chronicling his likes and dislikes, well worth a regular look in while you're out wandering the wastelands of the blogscape.
Whether the Cali dealers were trying to cash in on a fashion thing, or trying to clear old stock off of the showroom floor is not known, but somehow the bike in the picture falls somewhere short of the mark.
Be interesting to know how many were sold in this format.
I don't think I posted any pics of the Tiger Ton- Ten since the final alterations. There are more pictures but I can't transfer them between devices at the moment...........
Glad to report the spingers are working a treat out on the road, and the motor is as strong as an ox!
This picture is from Offley, the first time out on her, a successful foray as you can see!
Andy Porter and Toddy are going through the motions of setting up a Bike Build Off at The Trip Out next year. We're gonna be part of that, with a swinging arm build for a change, along the lines of this beaut above. There's a nice '56 frame already in hand along with most of the parts to turn that into a roller.
Negotiations for a Ton-Ten motor have started, so it pretty much looks like game on!
From our man in Japan, Chucky was lucky enough to get to the Mooneyes show in Yokohama this year, as always it looks like it was full of jaw droppers, and to my jaded eye this is the standout bike. Pretty standard beneath the paint, just shows how good Mr Turners initial design was.
There's been a unit Triumph that has been causing a stir, and ticking all the right boxes since it's debut at the Verona show last month, and it belongs to Luca. A well travelled Italian fellah that now resides in Sweden, knocking out some knockout bikes.
Luca has kindly sent some pics of the build up, so we can all get an insight into how a bike of this caliber is created
This is the bike as found, an ex-police 1966 650 Trophy found in, of all places, Karachi, Pakistan. Not in the best of condition but all there and in need of love and personal intention.
The start of the build was carried out in his garage in Naples, Italy. Originally fitted with a David Bird hardtail, but this was later changed for a one off rear section made by Frankie at Chopworks
There was some more work carried out on the front half to give the bike some more of the individuality that goes to make show winners. The lower top tube was remodelled to give the finished frame the full custom look. The tank was originally fitted to some type of sixties Italian moped and after reworking seems quite at home in it's new job of feeding the big Triumph motor.
The motor had had a hard life carrying around the Karachi boys in blue and was shipped off to Grin Triumph in Fife Scotland for a full head to toe overhaul, including the fitting of a belt drive primary from Lytedrive in Australia. As you can see the international connections of this build go on and on, crossing continents in a single bound.
Part 2 to follow when more pics come in from Luca.