Tuesday, 11 September 2012


Following on from the last entry - the thought occurred to me that with the bike being dispatched in 1960, perhaps the blog should be renamed from '59 Thunderbird ?

However ......

1960 was the year a few things changed on the Thunderbird - most obviously to look at was the new 'bathtub' and deeply valanced and flared front mudguard. Perhaps the most obvious in riding it was the improved handling from the new duplex frame.

The original frame had, I believe, become somewhat notorious for flex - a problem that the new duplex front tubes went a long way to resolving - though I've read that the model never fully recovered from the bad publicity of the earlier set up.

The 'bathtub' seems to have been almost universally disliked - particularly in america. Leading many owners to dispense with them (as happened with this bike). In america apparently the Triumph dealers actually retrofitted earlier mudguards to sell the bikes on.

So what we have is missing original rear tinware, thats amazingly rare, and largely disliked - even today. So we are going to spurn 100% originality, go with what we like, and fit the '59 mudguards with the '60 nacelle and the '59 toolbox and oil-tank.

So the blog stays as '59.

To that end - I've found another set of hens teeth ...

A complete original duplex Nacelle. A little bit out of line - though it looks to have been like that from new! I expect that the grille and side flashes were strategic additions by Triumph to hide small 'tolerance' issues. But its a lovely thing and a real find in this condition.

(That little circle holding it balanced - is the friction disc from the steering damper.)

More updates shortly - with hopefully the beginning of assembly....

1 comment:

  1. I'm with you on the bathtubs Anders - recently I have decided to chrome the tank on my SQ4, because the red & chrome tanks on the pre-1950 bikes look stunning - and the maroon tanks on the '51 on bikes looks, er, rather dull...