1964 Triton for Sale

1964 Triton L Side

I don’t often write up Triumphs here because they’re comparatively not all that rare. TriTONS, however, fit the bill and this 1964 example is exactly the kind of bike you’d want to buy: reluctant but knowledgeable seller, great pictures, extensive details on the bike, and several videos, one of which is a clearly narrated walk-around with cold start.

1964 Triton L Front

Tritons by nature are all custom-built and they vary in terms of quality depending on who put them together. An attempt to combine the reliable power of a Triumph engine with the sharp handling of a Norton “Featherbed” frame, these homebrews became a bit of a cottage industry for a while in the 60’s and 70’s, with many reputable shops assembling them. Parts between the two original machines can be mixed and matched, depending on the builder’s preferences, since the pre-unit gearboxes that featured on both give a bit of choice: some bikes used the Norton gearbox, others the Triumph.

1964 Triton Dash

While the resulting machine wasn’t necessarily much faster than the original Norton, it was definitely more reliable.

From the original eBay listing: 1964 Triton for Sale

This bike embodies the soul of vintage British racing motorcycles. From the days of early Isle of Man TT and hybrid experimental motorcycles.
This is an actual cafe racer! Not your neighbors CB360 with a seat pan kit.
First time ever listed on ebay. Here is your ONE time chance to own it. I will not relist it after this auction concludes.

1964 Triton Oil Tank

There’s a ton of information in the original listing, so make sure you take a look if this piques your interest. The walk-around video in particular is confidence-inspiring, and the shorter video of the bike revving gets the blood pumping. I’m not a big fan of the look of high-pipes in general, but you can’t argue with the sounds this one makes: to me, hotted-up Triumphs always sound like a pair of dirtbikes revving together, an appealingly playful sound that encourages you to annoy the traffic around you by blipping the throttle at stoplights…

1964 Triton R Tank

The seller claims this one won’t be offered again if it doesn’t sell, and there’s only a couple days left on this auction, so if you’re in the market for a nice British twin, move quickly!

-tad

1964 Triton R Side

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4 Responses

  1. Jess says:

    I believe a Triumph TSS is pretty rare . . .

  2. OK, let’s not perpetuate a myth here:

    The origin of the Triton was a marriage of convenience: empty Manx frames available after the motors were used in Cooper cars, being filled with cheap/available Bonneville pre-unit engines in the ’60s. It became a style, pure and simple; not so many Tritons were raced because a ‘DomiRacer’ would kick its ass. In 1967 the fastest production bike in the world was a Dunstall Norton Atlas, which would do 135mph. No road-going Triumph twin would do that.

    Regarding reliability, if you look at the Norton top end, bottom end, gearbox, clutch, etc, you’ll see they’re significant design improvements on the Triumph comparables, because Bert Hopwood designed them after Turner introduced the Speed Twin, and he saw room for improvement of the genre. His Norton twin cylinder head is a single casting with the rockers and pushrods enclosed, while the Triumph has separate rocker housings and pushrod tubes – Triumphs are far more prone to leaks with an extra 4 major gasket joints on the top end alone. The weakness of the Triumph clutch is well known, as is the slowness of shift of the gearbox. The Norton crankshaft is far more robust – bigger diameter mains and big ends, and you rarely see a blown up Norton bottom end, whereas the Triumph….is more common.

  3. Jess says:

    But the Triumph is basically a twin cam design with shorter pushrods which provide a lighter, less flexy, valve train assy. allowing more accurate valve operation at higher R.P.M.s

    A problem I see on this Triton is the precarious placement of the oil filter on the lower right side just ahead of the swingarm. If something hits it, good bye oil pressure.

  4. tad says:

    Paul, as always: thanks for sharing your expertise! You know, if you can’t trust the internetz, who CAN you trust? I had always sort of wondered if it had to do with performance parts availability for the Triumph engine versus the Norton, but I get the feeling there were plenty of people tuning both at the time…