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  1. #1
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    Default Where to go with this project?

    Hey guys this is my first post here. I've worked on old cars since I was pretty young, all sorts. Rode MX and did all my own bike maintainence growing up and have built an xs650 Tracker style bike and a kz750, and gs750. I have wanted to build a rigid bike for a while now and always like the idea of doing something different from the norm so I skipped looking for a Harley for the most part and jumped for a Triumph.
    I got a good deal (hopefully) and picked up someone elses Triumph project off CL about 6 months ago, since then I havent really done much except buy a old springer front end that I found and covered it. The motor is free and ran before it was torn down, apparently just needs wiring and new throttle and good to go. The guy I bought it from said it was a 69, I knew Triumph didnt even start OIF until 70 so I thought all that was weird but figured after looking at the motor and seeing a 69 stamped in the code, I figured he was referring to the motor. Im getting ready to dig into this thing and after some research havent seen many do much with the OIF models as far as hardtails, they seem less popular, and I feel like the hard tail on mine (looked up the part number its from British Cycle Supply) seems to really drop off leaving a pretty small space for a seat. That being said, there is a guy locally selling an earlier 60's hard tailed frame ready to go with gas tank seat and rear fender, and if all would fit right I would consider just doing that if it seems best overall.
    I know this seems like a pretty wide opened question, but if you had gotten this bike how would you carry forward? Keep it in the frame it is in and work with it or do the swap? And then from there, where to start on this thing? Wiring? I have been looking for resources without much luck but I'm sure I just need to look a little harder or find some kind of old service manual.
    Thanks in advance for any help, feel free to call me an idiot.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_1848.jpg   IMG_1849 (1).jpg   IMG_1850.jpg   IMG_1851 (1).jpg   IMG_1852 (1).jpg  


  2. #2
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    That hardtail looks funky I'd cut it off and get one from lowbrow or factory metal works. Get yourself a 69 manual, rask cycle website has an easy to follow wiring diagram

  3. #3
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    What does the title match? Title passes with frame on Triumphs.

    There are plenty of Triumph forums and all the factory parts books and service manuals you'll need are free to download.

    They are simple to wire. See wiring threads for general wiring procedure.

    First thing, you need a titled frame or at least a title that matches the engine after which you might be able to work something out like a special construction title.
    See the various title threads and learn your local rules if you don't already know them.

    Second, you need to inspect the engine, pull the plugs and perform a cold compression check on both cylinders with throttle wide open (actually check at the carb).

    What you have is someone's abortion but it's a start so no problem. Most choppers are abortions but the good ones are not, and you are going to build a good one.

    Don't spend money for a while, spend time studying first. A LOT of studying.

    A stock tank isn't proportionate on a short chop like that and neither is the large springer, but the springer would look good with some rake.

    If your title matches the engine but not the frame I'd get an aftermarket frame with an MSO.

    Collect MANY pics of what you want your finished Triumph to look like.

    Totally ignore any high performance mods because you want your engine to actually stay together. If it needs a top end I'd run low compression pistons. (Many mechanics cured vibes and made more docile machines back in the day by running low static compression.) It's a 1930s engine design slightly updated with unit construction and the trick to keeping them alive on the street is avoid strung out motor specs. Mellow engines kickstart MUCH easier too, though Triumphs aren't bad.

    Triumphs love oil coolers. Chopper style tends to avoid them but cool oil beats walking home. These are not reliable motorcycles in the modern sense of the word. They were not when they were brand new. Back then it was expected owners would basically be mechanics. They often were in England, but Americans just rode their Triumphs until they broke then parked them.

    You can avoid those mistakes since you are starting fresh.

    Plan to replace the alternator stator and rotor, and to fit a modern electronic ignition. MANY Triumphs got holed pistons from timing on one cylinder being incorrect. I'll eyeball Harleys all day and get them right but time your Turnip per the instructions that come with your ignition.

    Study Amal carbs and if yours are worn, get new ones.

    If you can make it to any vintage meets, go! Barber Vintage near Leeds, Ohio is coming up and the swap meet has a shitload of Triumph stuff (and everything else). The museum is amazing. If you are gonna get into British there's a considerable education that goes with that and old Brit riders know what you need to learn. Bring a vehicle with room to carry parts home.

    Since you want a rigid and seem to like springers, you'll probably want to make a long bike. A rigid non-OIF frame is the classic way to go. I don't care for OIF frames since the one I had and many others cracked in the usual places. If it has a title that matches the neck then I'd save the frame for a neck swap if my desired frame wasn't titled.

  4. #4
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    hey,dude. this is jimi, the guy that bought the triumph forks from ya last week. turns out they were forking by frank extended.

    what to do w/ that bike?
    like farmall said get a title first. i dont know what it costs in MD but it's probably around $35-$45. and it might take 4 to 6 weeks to apply for a lost title.
    there are poeple who can do this for you, but its not any faster and it costs a lot. it'll only save you the hastle of the running around. i did that once thinking the extra $ would be worth it for a quicker turnaround, but no.

    i just looked up that serial # and CE should be 1971. so that (wet)frame sure could be orig to that motor.
    look closer. i think the #s on the frame are on the right side of the headtube(neck). could be wrong, it's been a long time since i've messed w/ one.
    that rear conical hub is probably orig to the frame also.
    the wet frame will give you very little options for a gas tank unless you build yer own tank.

  5. #5
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    Yeah, I make that a March '71 so like @beat says that could be an original OIF frame. Saying that, I'm with @Farmall on this, get a pre-OIF frame if one is available, motor will go straight in. Only my opinion of course........

  6. #6
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    It's original all right. Not one of Meriden's smartest moments and the reason why non-OIF Triumphs are worth more.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by farmall View Post
    It's original all right. Not one of Meriden's smartest moments and the reason why non-OIF Triumphs are worth more.
    Not saying they never made any slip-ups but this wasn't Meridens fault. It was designed by the suits at BSA in a cost saving deal so the A65 motor would go in the same frame. Apparently when the first ones were delivered to Meriden they couldn't fit the engine in haha. They had to redesign it, they're still a pain to get in now!! Also the early ones had a ridiculous seat height so they had to redo that as well. And they rot on the bottom rails........
    And after slagging them off I've had one as a daily driver for 14 years now hahaha

    Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8

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    take a look at David Bird's slim libe for doing up the oif. Little less running and made to your spec.

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