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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
David Bird full hardtail Trumpet build

Hey guys, I thought I'd go ahead and start an official build thread. It is my first build. I've ridden my whole life and always performed my own maintenance, but never actually built a bike. I've pretty much blew all my money on the donor bike and the DB frame, so be warned that it might be slow going. I'll buy parts as I save up the money and keep on keeping on. The goal is to be finished by the end of next summer. However, I rarely meet deadlines or goals, so i'll be real happy if I can ride this beast into the Mayan apocalypse of winter 2012.

So it all started when I drove to St. Louis and drug this heap back to Oklahoma. 1972 T120 OIF. Complete, somewhat disassembled, top end taken apart, but low end is mint. Yeah, you know how that goes.



Tons of stuff was in boxes, rubbermaid containers, loosely bolted onto the bike and completely loose.



I had my brother in law help me lug this beast down to my basement.



Next I did my research, read a ton of stuff on this board, asked for advice and eventually heeded to this advice. I am going to completely rebuild the motor in my basement. I've watched the Four Aces dvd about 5 times, ripped it to my ipad and ready to go. Well almost ready, I still have a few specialty tools to purchase. Anyway, I'm in it to do things right.



Next order of business was to get a proper workspace going. I cleaned out a portion of my basement, went to Lowes and bought some lumber. In a few days I had a proper work bench suitable for rebuilding a motor. I think I overbuilt it a bit. It could probably support a V8, but oh well, it's VERY sturdy.



After seeing my work bench, my dear ol' dad took me to Harbor Freight and bought me a vice and a grinder! (He's an ol' Triumph softie from way back. He has a 73 Trident) I was pretty thrilled about that. Made in China, but surprisingly sturdy. I bolted them down and started putting them to work.



Next up I had a decision to make. I could have started buying parts to rebuild my motor, or go ahead and buy my frame. I knew that I was going David Bird full hardtail and I had the money, so I decided to go ahead and get that out of the way. It came in the other day and what a beauty. I've never seen welds this perfect in all my life. It is VERY impressive. It's a full hard tail by David Bird with a 4" stretch and 2.5" drop. I ordered it from Lowbrow and as always, the brothers were a pleasure to deal with. They happily answered all of my questions very quickly. The frame is a work of art.







Next I set out to find a proper motor stand. JJ member 72oifbobber helped me out immensely and gave me the exact dimensions for a T120 stand. Here they are if you need them: http://www.jockeyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=90025&showall=1 Anyway, I gave the specs to my friend and he fabricated me one for next to nothing. It's a real quality piece.

(Please excuse my friend's kawasaki in his garage.)





Anyway, that's where I'm at now. I'll try to keep up with the build thread and post a lot of pics. I appreciate all of you who've done the same. It really is nice to look at other people's progress while trying to obtain an idea of where to start yourself. Anyway, I'm sure I'll have a ton of questions from you guys, but this should be fun.
 

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Nice start, and don't forget to do your own thing. Not to be original, but to make it yours. When I saw the title I thought 'Oh no, not another one'... But you did your research and got the manuals. Next step get the proper pullers for that engine and dig in that 'mint' bottom end to get to the sludge trap.

Looks promising, I'll be watching this.
Good luck!!
 

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WOW, I am a big fan of David Birds work and I have a DB tail on my frame. The welds are as you say, perfect and make my welding look totally shit!!

Good luck with your build and keep the pics coming.

Cheers Dan.
 

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Subscribed, have the exact same bike, and am wondering now whether it makes sense to just buy a whole DB frame rather than put a hardtail on another Unit Frame I have lying around (it has a title). Only problem I see is how to register the DB frame? FL is a frame state, so unless I get some punches or start cutting necks out... what are your thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I tried really hard to find a pre-oif so I could just go with the DB hardtail, but around here (Oklahoma) there were none to be found. And when I did find them, they were usually 2x, 3x the price of OIFs. They're more desirable and considered a bit more classic, I get it, just couldn't afford it. I was finding completely seized ones for about twice of what I paid. Anyway, I'm kind of glad I held out for the full frame. I don't have to less with cutting off a bunch of tabs, welding in holes, etc. So I'm happy with how it worked out.

As for titling, I don't know how that's going to go. I also didn't mind going full frame because my bike came titleless. I got a bill of sale and I hear it's not that big of a deal I. oklahoma - but we'll see. Once my bike gets a little closer to being in the wind, I'll start checking on what needs to be done.
 

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I hear ya', I was even thinking of buying a bolt on section for the OIF bikes but without an oil tank, there is just a lot of real estate under the seat that needs to be filled, so nixed that idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Here's a pic of the clean motor mounts that came on the Bird. I didn't even realize it came with them. Cool bonus.



So I got the motor pulled today without issue. It's heavier than it looks and kind of unwieldy to deal with, but thats about all.



I had to slightly modify the square connecting tabs on my motor stand. My friend left them squared off and I found that the places on the motor where it mounts are rounded off. It was too much metal to grind and I don't have a angle grinder / cut off tool yet, so I used what I had. Bolt cutters. I snapped those babies off and they shot across the room like bullets. It doesn't look the greatest, but it works. Utilitarian right?





I got a chance to look into the cases better and this guy is nuts if he thinks the bottom end is good to go. While I couldn't see too well, it looked like sludge, leave particles and maybe an acorn or two. To those who insisted that I didn't cut corners and rebuild this beast...I thank you.

Dirty looking





This is my favorite pic I've taken of the bike yet. She's ready for renewal.

 

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Along with building amazing frames, David is one of the nicest guys on the planet. I had the chance to speak with him and he's just so very cool.

Bike looks like it'll be amazing and very cool. Good on you.

C
 

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Subscribed, have the exact same bike, and am wondering now whether it makes sense to just buy a whole DB frame rather than put a hardtail on another Unit Frame I have lying around (it has a title). Only problem I see is how to register the DB frame? FL is a frame state, so unless I get some punches or start cutting necks out... what are your thoughts?
In the state in which I live, If I go to the MVA/DMV with a certificate of origin dated 2011 wanting to title and register my 2011 bike the MVA/DMV will tell me to go get the bike through inspection first which involves mirrors, horn, proper lighting, turn signals etc.
 

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In the state in which I live, If I go to the MVA/DMV with a certificate of origin dated 2011 wanting to title and register my 2011 bike the MVA/DMV will tell me to go get the bike through inspection first which involves mirrors, horn, proper lighting, turn signals etc.
This makes me think I should just buy the bolt on DB rear for the Titled Unit Frame I already have, it's also 1/4 of the price but definitely not as cool and a lot more holes to fill...maybe I'll just 'stamp' some numbers in the DB full frame (that would be faster, easier, and more expensive, not to mention illegal - ha ha)
 

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Yeah I went the bolt on route and managed to avoid any form of inspection before getting it plated. Just gave them the Triumph VIN # and that was that. Would've been alot more work to get this bike "legal" for an inspection...

Bike is gonna look great! Hang on to the upper motor mount parts because you might wanna weld a bung or something to the crossbar that will utilize the stock head steady.
 
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