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Between Successes – 1974 Rickman Triumph 650 CR

Rickman-framed cafe racers have had a steady if not frequent presence on RSBFS, but mostly using Honda CB750 and Kawasaki Z-1 drivetrains.  Just before, they had produced but a few dozen Triumph powered CR’s.  This diamond in the rough has been in storage since just 3,000 miles, and is ready for a makeover.

1974 Rickman Triumph 650 CR for sale on eBay

Derek and Don Rickman made their name designing and fabricating beautiful and world-beating frames for the scramblers they loved, the lightweight and nickel-plated chromoly tubing being a usable showpiece.  They turned their attention toward the street starting in 1970, and provided the recently nationalized BSA-Triumph a market for their T120 twin of 46hp.  The twin carbs and factory 5-speed were good news, and Rickman added alloy rims and disk brakes, as well as large-diameter forks.  Careful fabrication was Rickman’s calling card, with lovely fiberglass work augmenting the frame.

Undeniably tired and ready for the next chapter, this CR appears substantially complete.  The pittance of miles will have to be swept away in a flurry of renovation, but the new owner will have a beautiful rarity when complete.  A thoughtful test rider or British specialist will be required with the right-side shifter, left foot brake.  Comments from the eBay auction:

RICKMAN CR TRIUMPH   1 0F 53 BUILT
BIKE HAS BEEN STORED FOR YEARS WITH LOW MILES
READY FOR RESTORATION
HIGHLY SOUGHT AFTER MODEL
ENGINE TURNS WITH GOOD COMPRESSION
ORIGINAL ALLOY CHAINGUARD IS INCLUDED
MISSING THE FRONT BRAKE MASTER CYLINDER (SAME AS TRIUMPH T140 SO EASY TO FIND)
TITLED AS A 1979 SPECIAL WHEN THE ORIGINAL TITLE WAS LOST IN 79

Rickman won the Queen’s Award to Industry for their exports in 1974, but had to change horses when Norton-Villiers-Triumph could not resolve their labor troubles and were forced into liquidation.  Before that the Bonnies had been a big success so basic mechanical parts for this CR should be easy to source.  With its long lost history it’s a soup-to-nuts project, but a worthwhile endeavor in this complete and seemingly undamaged example.

-donn

2 Comments

  • Now, those grips are nostagia!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • the President of the British bike club of Marin County Ca has a blue fairing triumph Rickman very much like this one but it has Harry Westlake’s personal 8 valve 650 engine… a very quick and well sorted bike…

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