Earl Johnson of Minnesota sent us a real gem this week; a 1974 Rickman Trident CR that he used in competition in the Central Roadracing Association in the late 70s. He picked it up at a salvage yard near home.
The motor was originally a Bonneville but when that blew he replaced it with a 1971 Trident that he said had better performance potential and less vibration. We’ll let Earl take over from here:
“That started a whole host of modifications, including modifying the frame and Trident motor to fit and align properly in the frame. I rebuilt the motor maintaining the 750 displacement but installed full race cams.
“Because the race cams didn’t come with a tach drive gear, I installed a Krober electronic tach. No speedometer is fitted. Cornering clearance had been an issue with the original motor in it and since the Trident motor was wider and I was using a factory 3-1 racing exhaust system(which had to be modified to fit the Rickman frame) , I raised the bike up by installing longer fork tubes (from a Rickman Metisse dirt bike) in new, custom made, wider billet triple trees and building a box section swing arm to get the axle adjusters back to the “normal” position and installing longer rear shocks. The wider forks now required a wider front fender so I split the stock fiberglass one and added in the appropriate amount of material.
“Rickman CRs came stock with a single Lockheed rotor and caliper in front so I modified the other fork leg to add the second caliper and re-laced the front rim to a special dual disc Rickman hub. Since the Bonneville motor grenaded so spectacularly, and because Rickman’s carried their oil in the frame, I was never going to get all the bits and pieces out of the frame, so I built a custom aluminum 6.5 quart oil tank that fit in place of the original airbox. This also offered some additional cooling benefits with the extra oil.
“Production Tridents always ran an oil cooler and I didn’t like hanging mine under the steering neck like the stock bikes, so I built the appropriate bracketry to mount it inside the fairing under and slightly behind the headlight. I then slotted the front of the fairing with 3 slots on either side of the headlight for proper airflow to the cooler. All brake, oil, fuel and breather lines were replaced with custom stainless braided lines and AN fittings. After retiring the bike from competition, I tore the whole bike down and redid everything for the custom cosmetics. The frame was re-polished and re-nickled and all the aluminum bits were polished. The rack of Amal’s were ditched in favor of 3 round slide Mikunis.