Your cart

What We Ride - Tommy T's T120

Tommy is a dude that I have always highly admired. He’s a jack of all trades and definitely a master of most. Tommy's craftsmanship always exceeds expectations and it clearly shows in this build. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Tommy for the past couple of years and his attention to detail is something everyone should strive for and his DIY attitude is truly inspiring.

Owner name, location: Tommy Tatham - Ventura, Ca @tommytatham

About: I’m a 30 year old graphic designer, photographer, craftsman and all-around do it all. I’ve had a penchant for adventure and the outdoors for as long as I can remember, and have always had a tendency to gravitate towards figuring out how things work.

Bike name: "La Liebre” aka The Tatham Triumph

Backstory of the bike: This bike was previously owned by a good friend of mine who after some convincing sold it to me for my desert sled build. It wasn’t much, but was everything I need to get this project started.

Craziest thing you’ve done on this bike/craziest place you’ve ridden: It’s hard to recount "the craziest" place I’ve ridden this bike, but it was in this year’s One Show in Portland which was a huge honor to be apart of. Outside of that, I’d have to say that riding it off-road through Joshua Tree with a bunch of my friends riding next to me was definitely memorable.

Engine/tranny, year and make, model, modifications: This is a 1972 T120 Bonneville (“X” model featuring the 5 speed gearbox). The bike came with a new set of pistons, but I ended up tidying up the top end by replacing the valves, valve guides (which were machined down to accommodate valve guide seals), valve springs and copper coated tappet adjusters. I replaced the old points with a new Wassell ignition, completely rebuilt the wheels and front end, painted the tank, powder coated the fame, and replaced nearly every fastener with a NOS one. I machined the modern bar clamps to fit the stock rubber mounts on the top yoke, fabricated the headlight guard, front fender high-mount and modified some NOS aluminum fenders to fit the stock “OIF” frame to achieve the look I was going for. I could go on and on, but in the end this labor of love took me a little over a year to complete.

Favorite thing about this bike: I’d have to say that by favorite thing about this bike other than that it’s a throwback to the old desert racing era, would have to be the pipes (made by my friend Jake @metallhaus) or the spare spark plug/spark plug wrench holder.

Next modification will be: Bob Newby primary belt drive kit or fabricate a skid plate.

Photos: Jonny Bourgault

Comments on this post (1)

  • May 08, 2019

    Nice bike. I mean really nice bike. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw you lived in Ventura, CA. Normally when I see Triumphs I love, there in the U.K. or Spain or anywhere else but here! And you live just 20 minutes away! I’m looking at doing/finding something like this. My whole budget is what I can get for my super low mileage 2012 HD Fatboy! Your bike rocks!

    — George

Leave a comment