Project Bike: 2002 Triumph Bonneville T-100

SkyBlue / Warm Silver - 790cc

COLOR: SkyBlue

  • Manufacturer – PPG
  • Color Code: TRIUMPH SKY
  • Triumph Paint Code: T3120300-JQ

COLOR: Warm Silver

  • Manufacturer: Standox
  • Color Code: 269600
  • Triumph Color Code: T3120300-MD

Summer 2017

I first saw this 2002 Triumph Bonneville T-100 sitting in the driveway of a house down the street from me during the summer of 2017. It had a “For Sale” sign on its windshield. I stopped, wrote down the phone number, and gave them a call. Eventually, I was able to meet the owner’s son and take it for a short spin.

It had a number of issues including:

  • A broken mirror
  • Bent right front brake lever
  • Scratches on the right side
  • A dent in the tank
  • Bent rear brake lever
  • Bent right foot peg bracket
  • Misaligned headlight brackets
  • Idled really rough and didn’t have the responsiveness and power that it should have had
  • The chain was filthy and caked with grime
  • Tires were low and not in good condition
  • Chrome rims were showing spots of rust

Based on all of this I knew the bike had been dropped on the right side at least once. Even so, it only had 2,400 miles on it and had the unique and unusual SkyBlue/Warm Silver paint scheme. So, I gave him a realistic cash offer based on all the work and parts necessary to get it back in roadworthy, safe riding condition. He shared it with his father and got back to me with a counter offer that was still much too high. I think the owner felt he had some kind of unique “classic” bike that lots of people would pay money to own. I gave them a slightly higher final bid and told them if they ever changed their mind to give me a call.

May 2018

After putting this bike out of mind for the winter I saw it reappear again in the Spring of 2018. I knew the owner was never going to sell it for what he was asking, so I called the number and raised my cash bid a little more and told them to call if they wanted to get rid of it.

I finally heard back from them in June just as I was getting ready to move from Illinois to Wisconsin. I met them and took a look at the title, and knew we had another problem. The owner had never titled the bike in his own name. A friend of his had passed away and his wife had just given the Bonneville and title to him. I explained that he could not sell the motorcycle to anyone until he had a clear title in his name. We agreed on a final cash price and that when he had a clear title, I would come back down from Wisconsin and buy it from him.

AUG 13, 2018

I finally heard from the owner in early August that he had obtained the clear title in his name. We set a date and time for the transaction. I drove down from Wisconsin to Illinois in the morning of August 13, 2018, completed the deal and loaded it up in my Chevy “Triumph Hauler” by 11:15 AM. The battery was dead, so the owner had to help me push it up the ramps into my pickup bed… which was a little scary! Thankfully, no mishaps occurred!

After meeting my brother Barry and my buddy Lee for lunch in a nearby Italian Deli, I headed back to my garage/shop in Wisconsin. I had everything safely unloaded and on my shop motorcycle table lift by 3:30 PM.

AUG 15, 2018 – Deconstruction

For several hours I tore into deconstructing the 2002 Bonneville T-100. This included:

  • Removing the seat and gas tank
  • Removing the windshield, mirrors, bar-end caps, headlight, and front turn signals
  • Removing the rear fender and taillight assembly
  • Removing the chain guard and front sprocket cover
  • Removing the exhaust silencers and clamps, and footpegs
  • Removing the rear wheel/tire/axle/chain tension adjusters
  • Removing the battery, airbox, and carbs
  • Replacing the front brake lever
  • Performing a bafflectomy on the airbox
  • Start cleaning the chain and worst grime-filled areas
  • Remove the Air-Injection System (pollution control)

Here’s what the Bonneville looked like when I stopped for the day.

AUG 18-19, 2018

This weekend I made some significant progress.

  • Disassembled the carbs, discovered one was completely gummed with by old gas/ethanol
  • Cleaned all jets, passageways, hoses, needles, etc.
  • Reassembled and cleaned outsides of carbs, cables, brackets.
  • Installed carb assembly back on the engine intake manifolds, and reconnected throttle cables
  • Installed de-baffled and modified airbox
  • Remounted all electrical and brake component to airbox
  • Installed new battery
  • Cleaned chain, frame, engine… everything!
  • Degreased and cleaned front and rear tires, wheels and hubs
  • Degreased front sprocket cover and chain guard
  • Removed front fender, tire/wheel, brake, headlight ears (one was bent badly), ignition switch, plastic fork protectors
  • Installed bar end mirrors
  • Removed rear taillight and signal assembly from rear fender
  • Installed air injection system plug bolts on engine head
  • Cleaned and re-gapped spark plugs
  • Reinstalled gas tank, fuel line
  • Started it up to test carbs – it runs well!

It runs! It started right up (with choke) after putting the tank back on, attaching fuel lines, and connecting the new battery. Pretty sure the gas is pretty old as well! This is all a very encouraging sign!

Final shot of the weekend of work.

Parts for this Project!

Parts I am selling from this project bike:

  • Triumph Summer Windscreen
  • OEM Chrome Triumph Silencers
  • Left headlight ear (within ignition mounting hole)
  • Rear Taillight/Turn Signal assembly
  • Front Turn Signals

I am ordering many parts for this project from my friends at New Bonneville in the great state of Texas:

  • Mirror hole plugs
  • Extended seat bolts – stainless
  • Front and rear retro style lighting
  • Fork Gaiters
  • Air Injection System (AIS) removal kit
  • Norman Hyde Toga exhausts
  • Front turn signal relocation bracket
  • Motone ignition relocation bracket
  • CRG Bar end mirrors
  • EBC floating rotor and pads

Other parts are purchased from these sources:

  • Right front foot peg bracket – Bike Bandit
  • 1.9″ Mini-Tachometer – Dime City Cycles
  • Sharky headlight ears – Bonneville Brackets
  • Battery, tires, and tubes – Amazon
  • Mule swingarm bushings – British Customs
  • UPGRADE OPTION (add $1500): Sun alloy rims, stainless spokes, 2008 Triumph hubs, Avon Roadrider Tires – Buchanan

AUG 20, 2018

Today I completed these additional tasks:

  • Ordered more parts for the project, received new Avon tires.
  • Removed side reflector adhesive from rear fender using acetone (nasty stuff!)
  • Cleaned out gas inlet port of flaking and wrinkled paint – contemplated options for the dent repair
  • Removed and cleaned gas petcock valve of crusty and gummed up deposits
  • Temporarily installed Predator silencers to judge exhaust note
  • Installed front turn signal bracket behind finned regulator/rectifier (https://newbonneville.com/shop/front-turn-signal-relo-kit/)

AUG 21, 2018

Today, I worked on the following tasks:

  • Started testing the Harbor Freight Crossbar Dent Repair Kit to remove the tank dent. Making slow progress.
  • Mounted Avon 19″ tire on a 19″ alloy wheel and hub assembly I previously had built by Buchanan’s.
  • Mounted a shop vise on my Harbor Freight motorcycle lift table
  • Ordered new chrome Norman Hyde Toga exhausts from NewBonneville.com
  • Additional cleaning and corrosion buffing/removal

AUG 22, 2018

Additional tasks completed:

  • Assessed front speedo bracket and ordered new tachometer
  • Quick fit new retro-style front turn signals
  • Quick fit new retro-style taillight and turn signal assembly
  • I confess I had a couple helpers today (grandsons)!

AUG 23, 2018

Today, I only had time to do a few things:

  • Connected and tested the new retro-style rear taillight and turn signal assembly.
  • Connected and tested the new retro-style front turn signals.
  • Installed the Mule Swingarm Spacers. In the process, I discovered that the swingarm was in dire need of new grease and lubrication.

SEP-OCT, 2018 UPDATE

I was able to sort out the carburetors after a thorough cleaning. With the airbox de-baffled and the inlet snorkel opened up and running a pair of Norman Hyde Toga exhausts from NewBonneville, I ended up increasing the main jets from stock 110’s, to 135’s. and increasing the pilot jets from the stock 40 to size 42, leaving the needles untouched. The idle mix screws are set at 2.5 turns out. This has produced a strong torque pull in every gear up through the acceleration process, and can easily bring the bike to 80+ MPH in an acceptable time frame. I get 45+ MPG.

I also received a new custom instrument bracket from Bonneville Brackets that ties the OEM speedometer and aftermarket 1.9″ tach together in a very pleasing way (See before and after photos in the gallery).

I swapped out the shift and rear brake levers with ones that I had previously drilled out, tying them visually together with the design of the new Sharky headlight brackets. I plan to do the same with the chain guard.

After riding the 2002 Bonneville for about 900 miles since I purchased it, I find the stock handlebars and controls set up to be acceptably comfortable and visually appealing.

NOV 2018 UPDATE

I have listed the 2002 Bonneville on Craigslist in Madison, WI and posted it online in several other places at $5,950. I am hoping to sell the bike by Christmas. I can deliver the bike to locations in the Madison-Milwaukee-Chicago-Rockford areas.

CRAIGSLIST AD = $5950

This is a rare 2002 Sky Blue/Warm Silver Triumph Bonneville in great running condition, lots of cafe racer style upgrades and low miles! This is a perfect daily rider/commuter bike during the week and twisty country road weekend warrior. This bike is a blast to ride in the “driftless” area of Wisconsin!

HISTORY

This bike was originally purchased new from Motor Cycle Center in Villa Park, IL (one of the first Triumph dealers in the midwest). The original owner passed away and left it to a friend. The friend stored it for a number of years and rode it on private property, never fully licensing it for the road in Illinois. Between these two owners, they managed to put on 2400 miles and to lean it over on the right side producing some non-structural cosmetic damages such as scratches and a dent on the gas tank.

Of particular note is that 2002 was the only year Triumph produced this retro paint scheme and because of a factory fire, only a limited number were made. After the fire, the blue was changed to a darker, more modern shade.

I purchased it from the second owner in July of 2018 and brought it to Wisconsin. I have gone over the entire bike, fixed issues, cleaned it up (The chain and sprockets were really dirty), added new features and improved its handling and performance. The carbs were a gummed up mess! I have tested and ridden it myself for about an additional 1,000 miles, fine-tuning the carb jetting and balance in the process.

UPGRADES

  • Air injection system (AIS) removed (increased performance)
  • Airbox modifications: baffle removed, snorkel removed, intake cover hole enlarged (improves intake air flow)
  • High-performance UNI air filter (improves intake air flow)
  • Norman Hyde Toga Exhausts (improves exhaust air flow)
  • Re-jetted the Keihin CVK carbs to compensate for increased air intake and exhaust = increased torque & HP, better gas mileage (110 Mains were increased to 135 Mains, 40 Pilots were increased to 42 Pilots).
  • Replaced cheap OEM Philips head carb screws with stainless steel Alan head cap screws
  • Mirror hole plugs
  • New Fork Gaiters
  • New NGK spark plugs (factory recommended)
  • Custom headlight brackets and instrument panel by Bonneville Brackets (superb crafsmanship)
  • Ignition relocated to right side (Motone bracket)
  • Custom 1.9″ mini tachometer
  • CRG Lanesplitter bar-end mirrors
  • New high-performance EBC brake pads
  • New custom bullet-style retro turn signals
  • New Lucas style retro taillight
  • All red/amber side reflectors removed for a cleaner, less cluttered look.
  • New battery
  • Replaced bent right side front foot peg bracket
  • High-performance, Mule swing arm bushings (improved cornering and handling)
  • Chrome seat dresser rail – Triumph accessory part A9738012
  • Customized/drilled front sprocket cover, rear brake lever, shift lever, and chain guard
  • New Castrol 10w40 synthetic oil and FRAM filter
  • Cleaned up loose, wrinkled, flaking original paint inside the gas tank fill spout area. Flushed out gas tank.

OTHER INFO

  • I have been able to pull most of the gas tank dent out, but there is still a noticeable blem up close. I have chosen not to rework and repaint the tank due to the original rare paint color. I recommend leaving it as is.
  • There are some scratches on the right side engine cover and sprocket cover.
  • Original chrome rims are in pretty good shape with some small areas of corrosion/rust which have been cleaned and brushed out with steel wool.
  • Original Bridgestone tires are still in good shape. No dry rot or cracking. Good tread still left.
  • The mechanical OEM speedometer registers about 5 MPH high, which is pretty common.

NEXT STEPS

  • If I were to do anything more to improve this bike, it would be new tires and inner tubes.
  • The second thing I would do is install “progressive” front fork springs, and newer, better performance rear shocks.

ACT NOW, AND THIS SPECIAL BONNEVILLE CAN BE YOURS BEFORE CHRISTMAS!

  • I have a clear, clean WI title. Cash only. Serious inquiries by text appointment only.
  • If needed, I can deliver the bike in the Madison, Milwaukee, Chicago, Rockford areas.