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  #1  
Old 7 Jun 2011
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2002 790 bonneville

Help, I have fallen in love with a 2002 Bonneville, it is the 790cc model with tacho and centrestand and some other non standard goodies with 17k on the clock, reasonably tidy and asking price is 2.5K. Is there any reason I should not get it or is there anything in particular to look out for? I have never had a Triumph before but always wanted one. Any help or oppinnions (sic?) appreciated. PS the exhaust note is particularly seductive and makes my Transalp sound as though it has lost it's voice.

Thanks in advance.
GM
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Old 8 Jun 2011
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They are generally bullet proof and that simple there is nothing to go wrong. Just ask the usual questions.

Chances are the previous owners will have spent a fortune on probably useless shiney bits and ways to turn petrol into noise. I like to see the standard bits come with a bike and an owner who underdstands that those two little bits of brass that came with the loud exhaust are not optional, but maybe that's me. Some of these noisy polishers can't fit their Union Jack tyre valve covers without stripping threads inside the engine, so it is worth gauging if the number of changes match the percieved skill of the PO.

If you intend to ride rather than polish, once you get it home clean all the electrical connectors and ditch the *****y british coil for a nice waterproof German one (they are on e-bay). Then just ride, it's what I've been doing since 2004.

Andy
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Old 8 Jun 2011
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Sadly...

Hi Threewheelbonny, thanks for the info. I took said bike out for decent test ride. Engine pulled like a train, handled well, sounded glorious. Sadly the seat was like a plank and my teeth were still chattering 10 minutes after I got off the bike because the back springs were so harsh. ( i may have been spoilt by the transalp here) Anyway although I could just about afford the bike I could not afford to upgrade the seat and replace the shocks with Ikons which is what most people seem to do judging from the threads on here.

It is still in the shop, maybe one day when I can afford upgrades i will look at other bonnies, til then thanks once again.

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Old 18 Sep 2012
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GM
Id like to jump in if I may.
I had a 01 Bonnie that I sold at 48k
The bike now has 100+K and no issues.
I sold the bike as I didnt like the suspension. Was a tad rough (I ride over some pretty shot up roads) But I loved the look.
I ended up with a KLR....My second.... Things dont get better the second time around..Or do they???
succession of bikes since and what do I find in my garage now- 07 T100. I missed my 01 too much and sprung for another.. This time I swapped out suspension and did some other mods...
The bike runs fantastic, stock seat does the trick for me, and I love the look..
I put Hagon 2810 with the shrouds (a la Girling shocks of old) Made the world of difference.. My only niggle is around 200k I have to go to reserve tank and start looking for fuel.... Not really a problem!
cheers
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Old 19 Sep 2012
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This thread is over a year old, so I'm betting the OP decided by now.

However, as it's popped up and as I've recently moved away from the Bonneville a few ideas that might make useful reading if it re-surfaces in another year:

1. The fuel consumpition isn't bad for a 12 year old design, but the 45-50 mpg average I got from my 2004 790 compares poorly to the 65-70 I'm now getting from a Wee-strom. Range can be cured (I used a 9 litre auxilliary tank, but again the Wee comes with a 300 mile tank as standard).

2. There are weakspots. In 8 years I;

Replaced a wheel due to a snapped/corroded spoke
Replaced a leaking fuel tap.
Had to re-wire the main earth
Got through two batteries due to the above.
Replaced the coil three times
Replaced the silencers twice.
One brake light switch replaced.
Both brake callipers siezed due to corrosion.
Repainted the clutch and alternator covers and rear mudguard.
Had a headed stud corrode and snap on replacement.
Was thinking about needing new shocks.
Replaced many many corroded fasteners.
(also, tyres, chains, snapped cables etc. you'd associate with use)

Most of this is related to sub-Japanese standards of coatings and materials. I had three rides on the recovery truck and countless coil related trips onto the hard shoulder.

3. Tubed tyres with the need to remove the silencers are a PITA.

In 2004 this was an excellent buy and I really enjoyed it. There are examples out there that have never really been used, so I'm betting they can be really good second hand buys. They will do anything and go anywhere given enough time and the right tyres. Buying new however I now believe they are overpriced, in 2004 they cost less than an F650 now the G650 is cheaper. To cure the major niggles using Tiger wheels, a home made loom, specially made exhaust and lots of expensive accessories (stainless bits and a big tank) would make a really good all round bike, but I can't see any reason to go to the effort unless seat height is the driving factor. Wee's, Glees, Vee's, Versys, G650's, Tenere's etc. would all do the job straight out of the box.

Andy
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  #6  
Old 19 Sep 2012
Fyr Fyr is offline
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ha
I never looked at when the Op posted.. Just decided to jump in as I saw the title..
Good info and thanks for sharing.. I had a wee and it did everything right but I couldnt stand the sight of it!
The bonnie cured that..
Thats said its basically a grocery getter and weekend roustabout.. But fun!
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  #7  
Old 26 Sep 2012
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I love my 2005 Black Bonnie, but sadly for threewheel I have after market pipes that bring back the rock and roll to the bike. That said I'm big on taking 600 - 800 klm day trips. I am going to switch to Michelin Anakee 2 tires because I ride mostly secondary roads. I'm scrambling the bonnie ever so slightly but as stated only have a issue with the small tank. I plan to carry a reserve tank.
The real thing is you ride what you like and make the allowances for the pros and cons, as the fellow recently met who drove from Vancouver Island BC Canada to central America and back on his 50cc scooter.
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