The 1964 Triumph Bonneville T120 650 was pretty much a carry-over from 1963 and at the same time a testament to the continuing process of refinement and development. Model designations were as before, with one important addition: the TT Special. Again, the T120R was the Road version, the T120C was the off-road/street scrambler (what would later be referred to as an Enduro), and the TT Special was a specially-tuned Bonneville stripped of all lights and street equipment, intended purely to race. They became known for their distinctive “TT pipes”, larger-diameter exhaust pipes running under the engine down the centerline of the bike, unbaffled.
ABOVE: 1964 Triumph Bonneville T120R, Roadster with down pipes.
The only changes to the frame were the bolting of the footpegs to the rear engine mounting plates, and the strengthening of the center stand brackets. The front forks however, were all new for 1964, with external springs covered in new rubber gators. Upper fork covers with headlight brackets were finished in gloss black paint as were the lower sliders, except their upper section which was chromed. Some UK and Export machines switched to Avon Speedmaster tires, while US machines continued to run Dunlops. Both speedo (now 125 MPH) and tack were changed from Smiths Chronometric to Smiths Magnetic gauges.
ABOVE: 1964 Triumph Bonneville T120R gauges. Both were switched in 1964 from Chronometrics to Smiths magnetic instruments.
PAINT & TRIM
In the ‘looks department’, the seat remained the same, the new 1964 paint scheme was Gold on top and Alaskan White on the bottom, however they were arranged in an entirely new way. Instead of simply dividing the colors horizontally and separating them at the back with a pinstripe, the new arrangement had the top color covering much more of the tank, following the line of the kneepads, leaving only a small area of the lower color (Alaskan White in this case) below the tank emblem. The front fender was now steel, painted white with a gold stripe down the center. The exception were the competition bikes, the TT Special which got polished alloy (aluminum) front fenders.
BELOW: 1964 Triumph Bonneville T120R unit construction engine.
BELOW: 1964 Triumph Bonneville T120R. 2-tone seat had smooth top.