1966 Triumph Bonneville restoration

Hi Swan,
Another enjoyable read. Keep up the great work and when you run out of things to do let me know. I'll send you a truck load.
brt651, what do you have?

As much I was want to start going clockwise, I am still waiting on a few things. I called Walrige to check on an order placed over a month ago. They sent my spoke kits and front rim, but never received another of my online orders for a bunch of other parts, so I reordered. I would like to have everything at hand before I can build a rolling chassis. In the interim, I sorted the hardware, and prepped the tank for paint. Skip from Apparatus MC installed new valve guides and new seats, valves and springs arrived from Kibblewhite so he will finish my head soon.

For me, motorcycles are not investments and should be ridden, hard and often. But given the amount of time and money I put in to my bikes I am curious to see what they are selling for. There was a Mecum auction in Las Vegas this weekend with six 1966 Triumph T120R Bonnevilles and and two TT's models. Five of the six Bonnevilles sold for and average price of $11,150. My project should come in under half that amount for parts, machine, work, plating and vapor blasting, but I am not calculating my labor which will be around 200 hours when I'm done. Mind you, much of that time is researching and sourcing the cheapest parts and a fair amount of time drinking beer and staring at my bike, processing and thinking. This is a fun hobby and would not like to do this for a living.
ROI is tough in the hobby game. I would love to do this for a living, but I think it would be at a net loss for both money and the love for all things greasy. Once it becomes work the fun is gone or mostly gone.

I only hope to get paid for the value of the project, labor is always free and as long as the next one is funded the hobby is free also.
A quick update: more of the final parts orders arrived from Walridge Motors and elsewhere. I now have both front and rear CWC rims and spoke kits so I can lace and true the rims, mount tubes and tires and turn my pile of parts in to a rolling chassis this weekend. Also, my Minnesota title just arrived so I am the legal owner, free and clear. Onwards and upwards…
Just found this one, sign me up to watch, I don't care what bike you are restoring or building the work is always amazing.

Thanks Maritime!
3 steps forward, two steps back… After two days in the shop I have the wheels laced and trued and am doing the final alignment of the center of the rims. It is is a long, slow and tedious process to get the center of the rims perfectly offset and aligned to one another, but worth the effort. I trued both rims to .004" radial and axial runout. The front fork seals and fork sliders took a couple of hours to clean and chase the threads because there was old paint, thread sealer?, teflon? crud and the seal holders would not go on easily until perfectly clean. I should be able to mount the tires, rebuild front and rear brake drums, and have a rolling chassis by Friday. Skip bored and honed my freshly painted cylinder barrel and I can start on the motor next week. The days are getting longer and looking forward to the first ride this spring. Onwards...
They grow up so quickly… I had a productive evening in Skip’s shop last night and finished aligning the rim centers, mounted new tubes and tires, assembled the brake hubs and now have a roller! Skip finished a perfect hone on my cylinder and the ring gaps were dead on. I have a little bit of time this evening to mount the centre stand, bars, brake stay, fender stays, and more. More good news, Amal/Burlen emailed me this morning to say the Monobloc carb set I need was back in stock so I ordered them. The carbs the final piece in the puzzle so the bike should come together fairly quickly (when I can eek out some free time).

Rubber meets the road, err, the shop floor

Skip, master at work, honing freshly bored cylinders.
Very cool project.
Love the detail.

I have delusions of doing something like this with my Featherbed.
With very little free time this week. I managed to place the decals, clear coat, sand, polish and wax the oil tank. It looks much better than when I started:

Thanks all! A quick update, I have made intermittent progress in the last 2 weeks. Although it does not look like much, it took many hours. The fenders were repaired in the English wheel, sanded, polished, and mounted. The tail light and seat were installed and I started on the oil tank I bought off E-bay only to realize it did not have mounted tags as my original chrome oil tank has, so I fabricated two tabs and had Skip weld them. I cleaned the interior of oil tank a few more times, fogged it with oil and then mounted it. We also welded up the crack on the side cover and I will finish prepping and painting it this week.

I started on the wiring yesterday and finished all the wiring, soldering new bullet ends, etc in the headlamp assembly. I still need to research and decide how I want to wire a kill switch. There is a lot of confusion on the kill button for this bike and I am not sure which to use.

I should be able to finish the wiring, mount the new Podtronics regulator and Boyer ignition this week and then hound Skip to finish cutting my new valve seats so I can build the motor. Spring is here and I should be able to get out on the Gold Star for the first ride of the year! Soon I will be riding this bike too.
Looking good brother! I am about at the same point on my '69 restoration. I do wish that I had taken the time to send my hardware off for cad plating... I've done some zinc at home on mine but some did not take very well and I have to redo it.

Keep it up...
Thanks all. 3Dog Nate, once you go with cad, you will never go back to zinc.

I eeked out a few hours of free time this week and continued to go clockwise.

Heated in the shop oven

Bearings in the freezer

Here we go…

Clean and reground crankshaft, new sludge trap and cap

Machined con rods, new small bushes, new shell bearings, and con rod nuts.

The lower end is in the frame, timing side is done, and I’ll try to find the time to install the gearbox, primary components, pistons and barrel this week. Skip will machine my head’s valve seats this week too, so the motor can be finished soon. Onwards…

More clockwise.

Skip removing the old valve seats. In with the new!
Slow and steady indeed, life tends to get in the way of motorcycle projects sometimes, but I have made some more progress. Skip finished my cylinder head with new valve seats, guides, springs, valves and Time Serts for spark plug holes and rocker covers. It is beautiful with perfect machining and the valve lift was dead on.

After buying, stripping, prepping, painting and polishing a used oil tank, I realized it was not the correct one for a 66 so I sold it on the forum and put in way too much time restoring the original chrome covered oil tank and side cover. After running it through the parts jet at the local auto parts store, I sanding off the the chrome and began the long process of filling pits, sanding, prepping, priming, painting and polishing another tank for this bike. I am please with results and am glad I bought the expensive two part catalyzed primer.

The tank took forever to clean, prep, paint and polish and though I am pleased with it, there are two minor issues with my paint job, but it will get me down the road. The badges are the high quality, made in the UK versions, but the holes are just a bit off, so I may try to fix them or re-chrome and repaint the original badges. New petcocks, grid rack, cap, knee pads and style strip.

Getting down to the wire and I still need to polish the primary cover, finish wiring the bike, install the chain and chain guard, exhaust system, cables, and the carbs. I am going to try to burn a vacation day this week to install the last bits, set the tappets and electronic ignition timing, add fluids, and hope to have her running by the weekend. Onwards...
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