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Imaginary Garage – 2010 Triumph Bonneville

Posted on November 29, 2010 by Andrew in Other. 45 comments

Aww yeah biatches – it’s time for the third round of Imaginary Garage, and this time it’s your turn. As you can see, our starting point is a new 2010 Triumph Bonneville. Sweet, huh? So what’s the hold-up? Let’s light up the blow torches and get medieval on it’s ass!

So how is this going to work? OK, there’s going to be two rounds of suggestions as to how we will modify the Bonnie and all submissions will be done via comments below. Round 1 will be the big stuff; tires, wheels, tank, seat, and exhaust etc. What we’re after is something like “I think we should make it into an X style of bike with Y style tires, Z type and colour of wheels etc.” In a way we’re your local shop and you’re briefing us to build this bike for you, so obviously “make a cafe racer with a cool tank” won’t do it. We’re looking for creative, original, clear ideas. No essays, please. We choose the winner, make the mods, and post the results. The winner gets a brand new Pipeburn King Kong tee worth $30.

Round 2 will be all about the tweaks; paint colours, adding or removing chrome, ride height, decals, handle bars and generally perfecting the look of the thing. Same deal as the first round; submissions via the comments section and be detailed. Again, we choose the best entry, make the mods, post the results and announce the winner. Prize for this round is your choice of any other tee in the Pipeburn shop.

You have 48 hours to get your ideas posted before we close round 1 so get them in ASAP. Leave a valid email address so we can contact the winners. I’ll update the article to let you all know where we are in the scheme of things.

And lastly, please remember that this is a bit of an experiment so please be patient. Now get to it!

  • Emaychee

    I really like using these as base templates for crazy things.

    I think a hillclimbing bonnie '10 would be great fun. The 'Triumph Bonnehille'

    extended swingarm with a monoshock conversion, raised pipes (so they sit over the cases), chopped seat with enough curve to stop you sliding out(!).
    A tank you don't mind having to lean over at 45° pre-climb might help, so perhaps something more fit for purpose – KTM-style lowered tank?

    enough ramble from me! I love the shirt but I have to say I love bonnies more!

  • Emaychee

    oh, but straight pipes. where's the edit button!

  • Matt B.

    Gas Tank: Put on a gast tank with high flattened sides like an old Norton Commando.
    Seat: Go with a solo seat with a high back, and a short cowl on the back to house the tail light, and to mount short turn signals off of.
    Rear Fender: None, just get rid of it.
    Front Fender: Same as the rear, sell it on ebay, I don't want it.
    Front Forks: Leave em the same, but slap on a set of fork gaters.
    Rear Shocks: Put on shorter ones so the bike leans a little to the back.
    Exhaust: Run both on the same side following the bottom frame rail with an abrupt up sweep before they end a little before the rear tire.
    Handle Bars: Install super low, and flat bars so your arms are stretched forward, not too stretched out.
    I think that's it. Oh yeah, and get rid of the mirror on the right side.

  • Ton

    Oke, what about making it a Streetster? Something between a dragbike and a streetfighter, never seen that done to a Bonny…

    – Remove sidepanels and use the (still to empty) space for a TD04 turbo, fed by an exhaust pipe along the cylinder on each side.
    – Get rid of the stock tank and put something like a Suzuki GS550 style alu tank, leaning forward a bit and with a big space cut out on the side (a bit to the front) for a vertical cylindrical KN air filter. Keep the alu rough, not polished parts on this bike!
    – Remove the seat and fender to fit a bit squarish end, KZ750 198x style (alu again) in combination with a single seat. Exhaust will go under the seat and tail, no fenders anymore
    – For wheels, let's go with some new skool 17", not too wide, say 5.5 rear and 3.5 front, Marchinesi's or similar.
    – Then a nice radial calipered Ohlins front fork (as short as possible for an aggressive stance and steep steering angle
    – Bump up the rear a bit with Ohlins twin shocks.

    Next round: details!

  • I will aim for a crossover between a modern cafe racer and a streetfighter.

    Larger sport tank (flat better); solo seat and cowl; short front fender, racing rear fender, low rizoma/renthal bars or clip-ons, double headlamp, upside down forks (showa, ölhins), titanium or carbon type complete exhaust system (perhaps Moriwaki or Yoshimura); Need better and width sport tires on 17" rims (same style), with double disk brembo brakes at front; A belly pan; And as main mod: monoshock system at rear, with a new swigarm.

  • me to

    Replace the tank with something more like a R80/7 or XS850, no fenders, girder forks, clubman bars, 40spoke wheels with white wall tires, rear monoshock, 2-into-1wrapped pipes with shorty muffler, a seat similar to 2001 bonneville from October, but shorter to accommodate tank. remove the side covers and add rear sets, and of course top of the line on everything. Hope i didn't forget anything.

  • I would go monoshocked with a single sided swingarm and raise the height a little with it.

    I'd also go with a twisted 5-spoke wheel front and back in black and a seriously aggresive sportbike-tank.

    Add some dirt/tracker bars and a smaller headlight with a black housing and you are nearly there.

    Keep the seat but change the angle to kick it up at the back and then lose the (ugly) rear fender.

    Keep the exhaust as far back as the foot controls and then sweep it up at an angle the same as the frame back there and youre done.

    A British doppleganger to the Ducati Monster with more soul without resorting to the bugeyed look of the street triple, and keeping more of the traditional Triumph cues.

  • me to
  • exhaust: chopped just after the footpegs curled away from the tires
    Swingarm:Carbonfiber single side
    Seat: straight ribbed bratstyle(ish) seat
    Cockpit: Simple digital speedometer
    Wheels: carbon fiber 5 spoke wheels
    Brakes: double disks front, disk back
    Fenders: front none; back just using licence plate
    Tank: xr750
    Fork: shortened ohlin fork
    Tires: street tires

  • XcaptainXbloodX

    new triton;
    save the engine and electrical bits

    get a norton featherbed re-pop frame, manx tank and ducati 900ss seat, avon style half fairing with nose cone

    modern as nice as I can justify suspension and brakes, tomaselli clip ons, rear sets (probably woodcraft? LSL?), perhaps an internal throttle/clutch from exile (never seen that done with clip ons, might be impossible..) modern but not to modern gauge replacement (im looking at you acewell). there are a ton of performance options available for these bikes, i would have to do a bunch of research but the end result would be something tuned as far as possible while maintaining street ability.

    keep the spoked rims but re-dish to use those coker replica firestones (performance killer, I know.)

    ditch the airbox and run velocity stacks, hide all the electronics up near the seat pan and switch to speedcell battery to hide under the seat hump, run the right exhaust close to stock, do the left one high and have it cross through the rear triangle and exit high, mini dunstall reverse megaphones at the terminal with black header wrap.

    do the whole thing in gloss black with gold leaf pinstripes to highlight the lines of the tank and fairing and logo (classic Triton on tank). tuck and roll white upholstery with black stitching. 3 colors-black, gold leaf, raw aluminum.

    im probably forgetting stuff but this should be a pretty good start…

  • unitedguitar

    First thing I would do would be to get rid of both of the fenders. We don't need those.

    Second, get rid of the seat and replace it with a flat pleated seat. Have it extend a little past the rear upper shock mounts with a hoop connecting the two sides of the frame that angles slightly up across the back of the seat. Remove the rear passenger pegs and mounts.

    Third, go with a blacked out headlight. Bucket and bezel. Use some aftermarket headlight brackets mounted upside down to drop the headlight down about and inch or two. Then you can lower the gauges down as well.

    Fourth, shorten the exhaust pipes and go with some mufflers similar to the EMGO shorty style mufflers. Make them straight at the bottom instead of angled up and have them end just after they go past the tire.

    Fifth, find some wire spoked wheels and run a really meaty tire front and back.

    Sixth, clip-ons. Enough said. Throw that mirror in the trash too.

    Finally, maybe go with some rubber knee pads on the tank but the shape and size are fine.

  • G unit

    Slinky lady torso tank ~ 60's Ducati Elite ~ deep matte purple like lips,
    Dark dark forest green leather seat ~ quilted, flat, room for a brunette,
    Rear frame loop and spoked 19' hoops, trials rubber, short aluminium guards.
    Pizza plate lamp, huge p11 type pancake filter.
    Straight thru high pipes, white wrapped symmetrical.
    Flat Track bars tiny cream speedo.
    A Rock bar hopper. I beg you build my bourbon day dream.

  • Brandon Schrichten

    Think Shinya Kimura for inspiration.
    Wheels: Moon Disc (Wrench Monkees inspired)
    Forks: Girder style front end or stock forks with shorter springs and narrowed in front
    Struts in replace of shocks so rear bum seat sits snug above rear tire
    Headers follow same flow as stock but each exhaust come to the underside of bum seat and stop 2 inches before rear axle (MV Augusta F4 inspired) or even notches cut out on side of bum seat with streamlined screens to cover exhaust exit
    Tank long and no wider than narrowed front end (streamline look)
    Brass rivets, leather tank strap, raw aluminum everywhere
    Hide all the mess of the wire harness
    Battery under seat
    Blown glass for velocity stacks (trippy)
    no headlight
    small and narrow aluminum fairing

    Or throw clubmans on it, call it a cafe racer, and then sell it to a hipster on Craigslist for double what retail value is.

  • Brandon Schrichten

    Firestone tires
    board track inspired clip ons
    build your own rear sets out of round bar and torch
    no fenders
    side mount license plate and small 2 inch round tail light
    diamond stitched brown seat
    and if you don't want the brushed aluminum look for bike, go for a vintage acid trip 70's chopper paint job just to be different

    Or go to British Customs, buy everything you can, bolt it on, and then label it as a custom build.

  • Sproggy

    Early CB750 flat-bottomed tank, 18" wire wheels front and back, powder-coated satin black, Pirelli Scrambler tyres. No front mudguard, no rear mudguard. Fork gaiters. Shortened seat (about 75% length) with tail light recessed flush into rear of seat. Battery hidden under rear of seat (so no padding, tough for pillions – they wouldn't fit anyway). Side covers and airbox removed, K&N filters. Short, under-slung exhaust with wrapped headers. Strip the paint off the engine – bare alloy is best. Fit 902cc big-bore kit. Smaller (Sportster?) headlight, indicators replaced with tiny bullet ones. Suspension lowered about an inch at each end – need to keep it ridable otherwise I'd go lower. All unnecessary brackets removed from frame – pillion peg mounts, centre stand mounts, etc. Junk standard instruments – just have a tiny speedo to keep it legal. I think that's most of the major mods…..

  • oOOo

    This might be cheating as I am going straight to step 2 and also have a render already, but I would like something like this which i made a few weeks ago:

  • Andrew

    @oOOo Nice try, but you gotta play by the rules. If you want to be considered, you'll have to submit a written brief just like everyone else. Nice render, though. 🙂

  • Phantom road race bike. Carrozzeria wheels or at least paint the oems wrapped in Pirelli road race tires. USD front end with radial brakes. Piggy back shocks. Chop the oem seat. Hi mount matte black pipes hugging the cylinders. Use the original tank but get rid of the seam weld on the bottom. Hide all electrics either in seat hump or sacrifice half the tank capacity so you can ditch the side covers. Bars 80's superbike style with cables routed within bars including clutch/throttle ala vespa. Tach mounted in headlight shell from 60's bmw/honda. Headlight shell bracket mounted to triple tree so we dont see side brackets. Sand cast your own heavy duty engine side covers. Machine some rearsets. Remove as many unneeded brackets as possible and smooth the frame for nickel plating. Its fun spending some one else's money!

  • Morgan S.

    Since the bike looks stunning already with the black engine components and cast wheels, from front to back
    -Ohlins front forks
    -Brembo replacement front brakes
    -fork gaitors to to get rid of the chrome
    -Chopped front fender
    -matt black powder coated bucket
    -powder coated stone guard over the headlight
    -Tach added
    -relocated black signals and lucas style taillight to get rid of the awful plastic ones
    -Black Harley Sportster handlebars to lower the riding stance
    -custom matte black paint job on fenders, side covers and tank, with this custom emblem painted on:
    -pipes tightly wrapped black heat wrap
    -Black powder coated BC predator exhausts with the FI remapped to suit
    -OEM Thruxton Gel seat
    -Hagon black rear suspension

    This would keep the overall profile of a very nice looking bike while removing the flashy chrome to make a better performing, meaner looking bike with an even better exhaust note.

  • dan

    make it into something i hate mostly….Either a goldwingesque touring monster or a trike. Both bike types can really use some triumph cool..I can give you a list of specs i would've want on it but i think you know what makes a trike or a goldwing so i'll leave it up to you!

  • Andrew

    @dan The devil's in the details; if you want it built yr gonna have to give us a proper brief. Just follow the lead of the previous submissions…

  • matt

    GXR swingarm, 4 inch gooseneck 3 deg out, 1960 Triumph 3.4 gallon tank w/hvy flake British Racing Green w/ Silver, La Pera Hot Rod Daddy-O seat black with red piping sitting on a small slightly elongated cafe rear fender. Clubman bars mini speedo and tach center mount, 1970's GP style grips, Shot Gun exhaust slash cut, frame in gloss Black, Coker Super Eagles on the stock rims, ditch the signals and you're pretty much home free. Bonus points for shrinking the headlight & full port and polish and all it implies with race build oomph in mind.

  • rohn

    I've always wondered why the exhaust points forward and the air intake points backwards – shouldn't it be 180 degrees from that?

  • Sproggy

    Was that a design suggestion or a serious question? It's all about packaging – if you had the carbs/throttle bodies on the front of the engine they wouold have to be accompanied by the air filter(s), breather pipes, fuel feeds, throttle/choke linkages etc – there's not enough space behind the front wheel. And even if there was they'd be exposed to all the crap thrown off the front tyre.

    You'd also have a hot exhaust out of the air-flow, right underneath a tank of fuel and your backside.

    I've seen a reverse-cylinder BMW twin but that's easier (in packaging terms, if not from an engineering point of view) because the cylinders are out to the side, away from the wheel.

  • Albert

    Good Morning,
    thanks for this opportunity to customize an icon bike from the oldest (non stop) manufacturer in this industry. Lets get on to it:
    The target is a lightweight early 70s enduro bike which could have been a participant of the ISDT "El Escorial" 1970 (ISDE since 1983).
    Rims: Alloy from Morad or Excell 19×2,5 front, 18×3.5 rear. Natural silver with black hubs and SS double butted spokes.
    Tires: Twin Duro Continental TKC80 100×90 front 130×80 rear.
    Tank: Lightweight alloy tank polished and clear coated from WoW with black anodized monza cap and oem rubber pads.
    Seat: shortened seat and rear frame loop to finish between the rear wheel axle and the end of the swingarm. Finished in black as a Bultaco Matador MK4 style with parallel side to side straight stitching.
    Side covers: Alloy polished number plates from MAS together with the front number plate covering a MotoGadget Chronoclassic dark edition
    Exhaust: Custom high pipe routed beside the cylinders and just above the cranckcase, through the space left by the removed airbox and out just in one beside the fender and behind one of the rear shocks with a final silencer Blunt type from Sinclair industries or slightly bigger as the end silencer from oem scrambler. Easier maybe just a Cross Version 2 in 1 from Zard.
    Engine: sprocket cover with holes from MAS (as well as the chain cover) in black as the rest of the engine. Oilcooler replaced by Bonneville perfomance "Heatsinks" or subframe cooler from Streetmaster as well as the hidraulic clutch cover from this last. OEM crankcase/frame natural alloy protector. Replace airbox by K&N filters+ARK. Replace battery with a LiFePO4 battery from Turntech.
    Fenders: Natural Alloy short rear and high front attached to the triple fork yoke
    Brakes, suspension, lighting and other details (sprockets, switches, pegs, handlebars, mirrors, etc) in Round 2…

  • Andrew

    We're about to call it guys. Any last-minute entries before we close the shutters on round 1?

  • It is the Bonneville not the Truxton. So I suggest the following changes:
    – exhaust pipe shorter, it should end where the foot pegs are.
    – seat – a simple shape where the lower edge is pararel to the upper edge. And a bit thinner then the stock.
    – wheels -spokes and rim black
    – rear suspension – upgraded to bitubo.
    – the tank is perfect.

    For this part that is it. More fine tunning on the next step. It should include an enduro style handel bar, smaller spedo and the lights mounted lower.

  • Andrew

    Round 1 is closed! Thanks for all the great ideas, guys.

  • Emaychee

    I want one! Thanks for the shirt!

    Round #2 (fight!)

    I don't know of any man tough enough to hill-climb in the dark..that's a scary proposition!

    Bearing this in mind, we don't need a headlight – or the mounting point – instead just a lightweight 'raceplate' with appropriately lucky '7' numbering, and maybe the same on the oil-tank cover?
    Rear ride height is a must, so the (albeit longer) swingarm needs altering to reflect that.
    Enduro handlebars? But again, seeing as this would be 'Open Class' (701cc+) the standard handlebars give it that distinctive 'Triumph' air..

    colours; gunmetal tank and covers on a dark red frame with black seat and swingarm;
    tight double pinstripe along the tank contour in the same gold the logo uses completes the look!

    I am just too happy..!

  • Andrew

    C'mon guys – don't let Emaychee ace both rounds! Roll up your sleeves and get stuck in…

  • w

    I used to like this site but all this imaginary garage bullshit makes me feel like its run by small children. Ive had enough… deleted from my RSS feeds – farewell kiddos have fun drawing your bikes.

  • Morgan S.

    Well I think this is fun.

    Enjoy being superior to all us enthusiasts. I don't know what we'll do without you. Let's keep this positive folks!

  • G unit

    Hillclimbers aim for the skies, Sky blue tank ~ earth brown seat.
    Side oval aluminium number boards, no.69 ~ who knows when she'll flip over?
    No light, just forks and air upfront.
    Clean race bars just natural wrapped grips.
    Old triumph wreath decal in silver.

  • Andrew

    @w That was maybe a little drastic, but as we said this is def. an experiment for us. If any of you have any constructive criticism we are always willing to listen; this blog would be nothing without you guys. BTW, I really hope you don't stop reading Pipeburn.

    Speaking personally, I think the process of making new bikes out of thin air is quite exciting. And let's face it, if you are customising a bike this is the process you go through – whether it's on paper, photoshop, or just in yr own head.

    And have you seen the bike we've built? Tell me we didn't just create something damn good?

    Any other thoughts?

  • Andrew

    (BTW – I'm determined to finish this, so keep the ideas coming. Thanks @Gunit)

  • charles

    Sweet, the "Bonnehille" was a great idea, and would be a killer bike. If we're building a real hill climber (not just a show bike styled after one) there're some details to attend to:

    • we'll need a rear fender, as to not get covered in dirt. Keep it stylish by making it a little bit bobber style, mount it on the swing arm.

    • The high pipes are cool, but they ought to be Rickman style that bend in close to back of the head so they really stay out of the way.

    • Lose anything unnecessary, headlight, speedometer, rear brake. Make the front brake smaller, maybe even a drum. This bike won't need to see at night, know how MPH it's doing, or stop in a timely fashion. A smaller tach, maybe mounted low, on a bracket from the down tube would be cool.

    • Paint it low-key, I think two-tone matte black and grey, in a classic Triumph pattern like the top scallop on the '75 Bonneville. Put a metal emblem on the tank as well, I'd also go with the "eyebrow" style of the '75. A colored frame, a deep matte red, would be a nice detail that would make it stand out.

    • Maybe this is just a photoshop mishap, but put the gas cap back on the tank. While we're photoshopping (if this is within abilities), maybe put a little dirt on the tires, huh? We're not building a trailer queen here, remember?

  • XcaptainXbloodX

    that rear shock appears to mount in the middle of the airbox so well need to address that whole region. uni pods would probably be the best functioning pods. the battery is another problem in that spot but if you go to a speedcell you can mount it at the center stand mounts and still maintain the ground clearance. a waterproof box to hide the electronics should go either above or below the shock.

    as for ditching unnecessary stuff;

    lets keep a light on there (it gets dark early here in the northwest) but get a shallow bucket that is completely hidden with a drilled aluminum number plate (I forget who did that, I wanna say wrenchmonkees) ditch the stock speedo/tach, ditch the mirrors. bring back the gas cap.

    definitely need fenders, I would go with a bare aluminum semi-bobbed rear coming out of the rear subframe (add about 9" back on) with a nice retro tail light (limp sausage or maybe one of those bullet style ones like bratstyle is fond of) and a long aluminum one mounted under the triples. aluminum skid plate is also a must. probably a brush guard for the radiator too.

    bar height looks fine but maybe something more stiff would be better. the pipes either need wrap or a heat shield (both?)

    as for paint, white tank with blue logo. you gotta have a clean canvas for all the dirt!!!

  • ofredo

    Longer swingarm, more rear ride height, polished alloy rear fender mounted to swingarm covering 1/4 of the paddle tire, flat bars, lose the side covers and put on number plates, also lose gauges and headlight. Alloy tank british racing green with polished knee cutouts. Finally ditch the carbs and install mechanical injection for running nitromethane! so we can make some noise!

  • Andrew

    Nitromethane? Now we're talking!

  • Andrew

    Round 2 is closed! Thanks again.

  • Emaychee

    must be on a similar 'wavelength' – Congrats Charles.

    Andrew – let's see this beauty! 😛

  • the12for12

    GREAT post and conception. I'm hooked – and I don't even own or ride a

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