Life is Good: 1966 Triumph TR6SR

Tom TeRonde rode his Triumph TR6SR for 20 years. Then it sat in boxes for 20 more. Thanks to the magicians at Retrospeed in Wisconsin, it’s alive once again.

| September/October 2019

1966 Triumph TR6SR

1966 Triumph TR6SR

Engine: 649cc air-cooled OHV parallel twin, 71mm x 82mm bore and stroke, 8.5:1 compression ratio, 40hp
Top speed: 96mph (approx.)
Carburetion: Single Amal Monobloc 1-1/8in
Transmission: 4-speed, chain final drive
Electrics: 12v, Tri-Spark electronic ignition
Frame/wheelbase: Single downtube cradle frame/ 55.5in (1,410mm)
Suspension: Telescopic front fork w/hydraulic damping, swingarm rear
Brakes: 8in (203mm) drum front, 7in (178mm) drum rear
Tires: 3.25 x 19in front, 4 x 18in rear
Weight (dry): 365lb (166kg)
Seat height: 30.5in (775mm)
Fuel capacity: 3.5gal (13.3ltr)

Make no mistake: kids are impressionable.

When Tom TeRonde was 11 years old, his dad bought him a Honda CB160 to tear around the family property on the outskirts of Oostburg, Wisconsin, where they had a few horses and grew Christmas trees. His four sisters were into the horses, leaving Tom as the only one in the family curious about internal combustion engines.

“Boys would often come around to hang out with my sisters,” Tom says of his young family life. “And I clearly remember one day when three guys pulled up on two Triumphs and a BSA. That made quite an imprint on me. I hoped that one day I could get something like one of those Triumphs — it was the sight and the sound, and I thought it was a very cool way to get around.”

Better than the small-bore Honda, at least, but Tom had to wait until he was 19 before an opportunity to acquire a Triumph presented itself. In 1977, Tom had just finished his first year of school at the University of Wisconsin. He went to visit a high school friend who happened to be selling a 1966 Triumph TR6SR.

8/19/2019 8:48:52 AM

Excellent photographs, a proper Bike, seat is a bit bent and those handle bars are so wrong. Trying to catch all of the flies eh?

8/13/2019 9:27:04 AM

My first true motorcycle was a 1970 TR6R followed by several other Triumphs. That first love is forever. But like others, age and a little trauma over time have resulted in a few joint replacements that make kick starting a risky proposition. That's why I've had my Kawasaki W650 for 15 years and just purchased a new Royal Enfield 650 Interceptor.

8/9/2019 2:06:10 PM

I started out on a Triumph 650, and still love them today. I'd love to find an electric start Meriden Bonneville (1983 I believe?). Kicking isn't as much fun as it used to be.

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