• Motorcycles Triumph story

    Motorcycles Triumph storyMotorcycles Triumph history interests many of us. In general, nothing outstanding even for those times. Therefore, it is not surprising that Triumph ZTA, which debuted in 1957, did not explode the market. It turned out that the bosses of the company incorrectly evaluated the demands of customers. It was only five years earlier that the fathers of families, who were looking for an inexpensive vehicle, set the tone. But in the second half of the 1950s, they preferred the car, albeit a small one. At the same two-wheel market youth reigned: more than 40% of buyers are younger than 21 years. And they were not interested in such a boring machine (only 130 km / h of the maximal train).


    And sorry, the engine turned out good! However, the dignity of a good engine is that it can be upgraded without serious consequences. Already in 1959, the 500-cubic versions debuted (it only took to increase the diameter of the cylinder to 69 mm): 27-strong 5TA and sporty 32-strong Tiger 100, accelerated to 160 km / h.


    It was already fun! Sales quickened - according to the dynamics of the new "five hundred" were the best in the class. Alas, not in controllability: being an excellent engine, Turner had, let's say, a very peculiar idea of ​​the frame design (which costs, for example, the connection of the frame and steering column in its ZTA!).Therefore, strange hybrids came out of the hands of understanding enthusiasts: for example, Tribsa (Triumph engine in frame В5А) or Triton - connection of the same motor with frame Norton Featherbed. Already in the 1960s, this discrepancy between the capabilities of engines and chassis gave rise to a whole galaxy of famous British manufacturers of aftermarket frames.


    Fortunately, Turner retired in the early 1960s. Fortunately, because the successor to the new format of the large 650-cc Triumph motorcycles was taken over by his successor Bert Hopwood, who had previously worked for Norton. And there they understood a lot about good chassis!


    Hopwood took the designer Doug Heele with him, and this couple took up a deep modernization of the flagship model Triumph - Bonneville.


    This high-speed (190 km / h!) Machine graced the gamut in 1959 and was named after a dried salt lake in Utah, a testing ground for lovers of high-speed races. There, in 1956, American Johnny Allen on a cigar-shaped machine with a forced Triumph engine showed a record speed of 345.2 km / h. The new Bonneville, introduced at the end of 1962, received a monoblock engine, structurally the same as the 350-cc ZTA designed by Turner. Instead of a magneto and a separate generator for lighting, the motorcycle had a car-type electrical system with an alternator and ignition coils (but not 6-volt, as in ZTA, but 12-volt,which greatly improved the light of the headlights). Finally, Doug Hill designed a completely new frame. Interestingly, on the old Bonneville, a full duplex was used, and Hill preferred the same scheme as on the ZTA: a single front pipe forking under the power unit (half duplex). But, competently weaving the pipes and strengthening the places of their connection with kerchiefs, Doug received a very rigid knot, moreover, the engine was also included in his power circuit. I must say that not everyone liked this change. First of all, the rigid connections transmitted vibrations well, and the two-cylinder ryadnik without a balance shaft did not stint on them. Secondly, the old frame was walking as it wanted and in the limiting modes it was simply dangerous, but in the ordinary ride it forgave blunders for newcomers. And the new demanded a confident hand.


    But experienced drivers took the updated Triumph with a bang! And a large part of these high-speed roadsters has been converted into racing cars. If the W5BK championship were held in the 1960s, Triumph would take the world title more than once! However, his share was enough: he reigned in the British races of serial motorcycles, such as the Thruxton 500 and Production TT (Triumph Bonneville became the first road vehicle, which showed an average speed of 160 km / h on the Tourist Trophy track).The teams of England and the United States on Triumph motorcycles successfully performed in the main enduro competition - the FIM Six Day Day (a cult actor and avid motorcyclist Steve McQueen took his gold medal on this brand’s car). In the USA, the 500-cc Triumph successfully opposed the 750-cc Harley-Davidson (according to the AMA rules until 1969, the 500-cc upper valve and the 750-cc lower-valve machines competed in the most popular racing class). And the 650cc versions were in particular American competitions like the American AMA National TT. These races had nothing in common with the British Tourist Trophy: they were held on earthen tracks and were a mix of speedway and motocross.

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