A beautiful 1967 Bonneville 650 put together by local legend and American Motorcycle Association Hall of Famer, Jack Wilson of Big D Cycles in Dallas Texas. A great story that included the original build sheet that Jack wrote up and a letter of provenance from Keith Martin, long time Big D associate and current owner/operator who worked with Jack and saw this bike being built. The bike was built for a dentist who had it displayed in his office for 19 years according to the story I was told by my buddy Clinton, who sold it to me a number of years ago. I had seen it on display in Clinton’s living room for a good decade before he decided to sell it. He bought it from another mutual friend, David, who owned it several years and rode it about three thousand miles.
A custom frame, but otherwise stock 650. Since purchase, it has been sitting in my shop and ridden sparingly for short trips until poor tuning put it away for the last couple years. It is ridiculous that someone who works on bikes daily does not have a reliable full-size bike to ride, so I am slowly getting around to servicing a couple for myself, with this being the first one. The only changes I have made were to add a Wassell electronic ignition, and switch the original Amal Monoblock carbs out for a set of new Amal 930’s along with new petcocks and tubing. The monoblock carb barrels were severely pitted (seen in a previous post,) and were allowing too much air to leak around the slide.Triumph changed from Monoblock carbs to Concentrics in late 1967, so they are not out of place on this bike. The bike is super easy to start and runs great with the new gear!
Because of a lean fuel mix from the poorly sealing carbs, there was a lot of heat that blued the header pies. Fortunately, I never took it very far once it started running so hot. The oversize main jets had been compensating somewhat, but it got to the point it was running hot and no amount of tuning seemed to make a difference, prompting the carb and ignition changes.
The tank is gold and eggplant, done by Jack Wilson. It was a Triumph color and was said to be his favorite.
There is nothing else to change about this sweetheart.
Getting the Wassell ignition unit timed and strobed. The flywheel has no marking and the crank lacks the notch at 38 degrees through the rear TDC locking hole, so the primary cover has to be removed and a degree wheel used. There are now marks scribed on the flywheel to make this easier in the future.
The “Hater” minibike in parade lighting for the Christmas parade season. There are a number of “Parade of Lights” events around here that the World Famous Wheelie-ing Elvi do requiring the floats be lit up. These are battery-powered LED fiber-optic strands.