1957 Triumph Tiger 110

Triumph twin owned by Bob "Snuffy" Smith
Triumph’s Tiger 110 was the forerunner of the Bonneville, developed for the American market. And sixty years ago, its 649 cc parallel twin OHV motor made it the fastest Triumph you could buy. This lovely 1957 model was owned by the late Bob “Snuffy” Smith, a racer from Pennsylvania, and photographed by his friend Harold Ross. “Bob purchased the bike in the mid 80s and then restored it,” says Ross. “He fitted a single saddle, had the side covers chrome plated, and inverted the racing stripe paint scheme on the fenders to fit his liking. His son Matt remembers being on vacation in Florida when his father had the chrome-plated parts shipped there, because he was so eager to see them.” The subtle mods were well-chosen: they’ve removed all vestiges of the stock Tiger’s slightly bloated looks. And if you’re wondering why the photo looks different to the usual motorcycle studio shots, it’s because Ross employs an unusual technique: light painting. This involves working in a completely dark studio, opening the camera shutter for a long time, and then ‘painting’ on the light using a modified fiber optic cable. Just the thing to show off the fine curves of a vintage Triumph twin.

  • mingh

    that is just immensely beautiful. What a balance in shapes, nothing that screams for attention. Between all the heavily modified bikes, one might forget how great some of the originals look.

  • Such a beautiful bike. I was at a light painting shoot a month or so ago but the results weren’t as good as this.

  • WRXr

    “Light Painting”. The photograph itself seems so heavily altered as to be a computer creation. Note the light beam from the headlight. Not sure if this is really a good thing.

  • Dave

    Here’s a great shot of Snuffy on his Triumph during a slow speed race in 2005.


    He is very missed amongst his friends in the Philadelphia area.


  • Phil

    Nice lighting, nice bike,nice photo,nice writing….reminds me why i like this site

  • Russell

    My all-time favorite model. Subtle but effective changes that really work together. I’ve always thought the nacelle on those bikes was one of the best pieces so I never would have thought to take it off. I actually looks good without it too. What a work of art.

  • Bob Irvine

    Rode one of the same year daily for most of the seventies. Mine was more or less original, in the pale blue, and had siamese pipes. Only major problem experienced was with the seven stud alloy head. As my father was in charge of RAF workshop, this was soon remedied. Loved that bike!

  • al hartman

    Awesome picture, That bike now resides in my garage. I never knew that picture was taken. Snuffy was the best of the best!!!!!

  • Tony

    Fantastic image, composition, technique. Who’s the photographer?

  • Tony

    Oh, Harold Ross! I should have known!

  • This was my dads bike and I can say this t110 was his pride and joy. Unlike some people who restore a bike like this, my dad enjoyed riding it, not just polishing it for show. As a result, it took some wear and tear over the last 20 years which is he had it repainted a few years back. The picture in the link Dave posted shows the bike with the original color scheme on the fenders, it was shortly after that my Dad decided to switch it up a bit. I’m looking forward to seeing that bike again this November at the Turkey Pro Rally.