Tritons

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A proper Triton is by far my favorite two wheeled art form. I picked up a pre-unit wideline a few years ago from the British fellow who had it put together over in the UK and then had it shipped to the States when he moved to the east coast. He posted it on ebay and I was able to convince him to sell it off-auction. A few months ago, I stumbled across a pre-unit slimline and had to jump on it. The fellow who put it together spent four years and spared no expense.

Tritons012_zpsa24fdedc.jpg


Tritons010_zps576d4d4e.jpg
 
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Thanks! The slimline is more refined and a little easier on my knees. The wideline is up for a makeover soon.
 
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I prefer the one with the wideline frame. The fifties Tritons were first created by using featherbeds from manxes to house pre-unit motors. It is what I identify as a Triton, the slimeline frame was only ever used for road bikes, not racers. I would have no interest whatsoever in a unit Triumph engine in a slimline frame, to me it is not the real deal.
 
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acotrel said:
I prefer the one with the wideline frame. The fifties Tritons were first created by using featherbeds from manxes to house pre-unit motors. It is what I identify as a Triton, the slimeline frame was only ever used for road bikes, not racers. I would have no interest whatsoever in a unit Triumph engine in a slimline frame, to me it is not the real deal.

Presumeably then Commandos are Johhny-come-latelys too. ??

Slimline Nortons lapped the IoM faster than any wideline ever did, back in the 1960s too, when they were absolutely the 'real deal'...
 
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To each his own . . . fortunately I do not have to pick between the two, but if I did, I'd pick the pre-unit slimline. The slimline is more comfortable in the crotch . . .
 
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Fletch said:
The slimline is more comfortable in the crotch . . .

Indeed.
I had a wideline project.
The first time I sat on it, I knew it wasn't going to be comfortable.
Maybe you need to develop cowboy hips ??
Or a much narrower tank....

acotrel said:
the slimline frame was only ever used for road bikes, not racers.

Aco's memory is flawed.
What about 650 type 'domiracers'.
What about Dunstall racers ?
And the production 500 miler races ?
I'm sure there were others too - and with the Atlas ??
 
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Very nice bikes, but more fun building them, the preunits looks better than any units Triumphs in the Featherbed frames, but when I got my Wideline back in 79 I decided that a Norton motor is still the best so the 850 went into it, I am building a 650 Manxman (but has been on hold for sometime now) will be getting back into it in the next month or so, have most of the parts now and it will be built very simlar to your bikes, but my tank will be painted blue.

Ashley
 
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I have done quite a few vintage projects, mostly café themed, and while yes there is satisfaction in taking a bike down and reassembling it with your own spin, I have no problem buying one that is complete/done. I respect the time and thought that goes into a well assembled bike and am willing to pay for it.
 
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The 500cc Domiracer was ridden by Tom Phillis, and I believe it only raced in the IOMTT once . It had a lowered wideline frame. The 650SS was not a 'Domiracer'. Yes, Commandos were 'johnny come latelys' - a completely different concept. I suggest factory Norton racers never had slimeline frames.
 
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Neither of the bikes I posted were meant for racing, so the point is moot . . . :wink:
 
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Fletch - fill us in on the details. Is that a Triumph conical rear hub and a Suzuki GT750 front drum on the Slimline? What are the barrels and the cc? Ceriani front fork? Mikuni carbs? Make of rear shocks? Gearbox ratios? Spec of motors?

Looks like you have fairly fresh rubber on both. What are your tyre and wheel sizes?

The Slimline looks the best tool for a fast Sunday morning spin!

They look good. How do they go??

Dave
 
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Whether the Triton is intended to be raced or not is irrelevant. The first Tritons were bikes built by the sorts of fellas who frequented the Ace Cafe in London in the fifties. They were an attempt to emulate what was being raced. It takes an extremely well developed 650cc Triton to beat a short stroke 500cc Manx on a race track. Very few manxes were ever converted to road bikes, the only ones I've ever seen have been old long strokers. The objective in building a Triton is to get a powerful motor into the best handling frame. In those days the manx was the ultimate, however we could not afford them, so the Triton was next best. I love the original fifties Tritons with the pre-unit motors a nd wideline frames, they are w hat the y were back in history. A slimline frame fitted with a unit motor is a stupid bike which will never handle because you cannot get the motor in the correct position, and the frame is heavier than needs be. A 1963 unit Bonneville would kill it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFXDBxCNZRM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-NsYKM0n3I
 
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acotrel said:
I suggest factory Norton racers never had slimline frames.

So you are excluding Doug Heles slimline dommies that raced at Daytona. ??
Those photos are famous.
BenG is always rabbitting on about them too - where ya been...

And all the privateer 650 versions that raced through the 1960s.
Including as Dealer entered bikes in the 500 mile proddy bike races.
 
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Dave- you are spot on regarding your description; the rear shocks are Works, the tires are Avons 100/90/18 F and 120/80/18 R, and it is a pre-unit 650cc engine. I am waiting on the fellow who I got it from to give me the specs on the engine and documentation of the overall project. He was a former Triumph racer and spent quite a bit of time on the finishing details. I love the Chronometric gauges- too cool in action. It is indeed the perfect fair weather, Saturday morning scoot. Great for keeping the neighbors on edge :wink:

The other side:
Tritons001_zps703680a7.jpg


Acotrel- thanks for your input, but with all due respect, I am no longer interested in your opinion.
 
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Sorry that I'm so pedantic. It is your bike and you obviously enjoy it, that's all that is important. Authenticity and historic value mean nothing.
 
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acotrel said:
Authenticity and historic value mean nothing.

That is just peacock wacko talk. ?

Tritons are built up from bits - by their creator !!
I was going to pen that no two are probably completely alike - but someone is sure to produce a quartet of them.
And they rarely stay the same forever, often being changed and upgraded, as owners get nu ideas.
Or things break or wear out.

And since history keeps trundling along, and slimlines are just as important as a source for new triton builds,
history is still being made.

If folks didn't think they could build a better mousetrap, we'd all still be riding penny farthings....
 
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And they rarely stay the same forever, often being changed and upgraded, as owners get nu ideas.

Rohan, the above is so true. The guy I got the wideline from put his spin on the bike while under his tutelage in UK, and I am going to do the same here under my care. I am sure the next bloke who owns it will have their own fun with it too. But, regardless, no matter what any one owner does to the bike, it will always be a relevant piece of motorcycling history as the bits combined to form the whole are historically accurate. The same could be said for the slimline, but the fellow who assembled it did such a nice job that I can't imagine changing it- maybe the tail light lens . . .
 
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Oops, forgot, how they ride:

The wideline, in true historically correct Triton form, is a bit rough around the edges, but runs like a champ- the rearsets are too high for my tired knees and will be relocated sometime in the future.

The slimline is a fresh, shiny, revitalized, historically accurate version of its original form; it is very clean and tidy and the engine is all new. It runs and rides like a new bike.
 

Chris

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Hi

Beautiful bikes.
My first Triton was built into a road bike in 72. Slimline frame, 650 Thunderbird engine, Somerton cams, 12.25 to 1 compression
Powermax pistons. Plain old 8 stud top end. Cut monoblocs. As I said an original bike.
It was raced within 12 months of it leaving the showroom floor with its Norton engine!
Obviously the Triumph engine was the engine of choice at that time.
Lovely handling bike. The engine is in its original state including the chrome crank :D
Since then I have built widelines with 500 & 650 engines Lovely bikes including unit 650. Dommie 500 racer, Commando in featherbed.
Riding widelines has my thighs burning! bright pink & irritated. 6ft2 & still not enough leg for that wide seat. Seems the slimline will be staying!

Chris
 
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