Vintage Triumph Alpha-Numeric Parts Decoder
When the first T140s were introduced to the world in late 1972, Triumph decided to make things a bit more complex for their dealers and parts re-sellers around the world. They decided to also change their parts numbering system from an alpha-numeric system to a numeric system. This made finding parts shared with older models more difficult because the same part now had to part numbers. So, in order to know how one part number translated to another, you needed to do a little sleuthing. Nothing that would challenge the former resident of 221B Baker Street or need the assistance of Tom Hanks' alter ego, symbologist, Robert Langdon (if you don't know who that is, do some sleuthing yourself). You just had to know how to read Triumph's handy part conversion index they now placed in every new parts catalog.
Below, I've published that index which is a key to help you decipher pre-1973 part numbers. In the index below, you will see that there are several sets of letters accompanied by a number. Each letter has a number representation. Prior to 1972, a common part designation may be D4159. Using the key below, you can change to letter "D" to a "60." You then stick a dash between that number and add the remaining number to translate D4159 to 60-4159. Simple, right? All post-72 part numbers have a two digits followed by a dash (hyphen) and four more numbers. But there are a few other twists. How would you translate this? D159 or D59. There are not enough numbers to get six digit number code. The trick is, you just add enough zeros to the last four digits to create a 6-digit code. So, D159 would become 60-0159 and D59 would become 60-0059. There are also two alpha-numeric numbers on this list, E1 and F1. You treat these the same as the alpha codes. For example, the old number F12359 would be converted to 83-2359 and E159 would translate to 71-0059.
As it turns out, you really don't need don't need Sherlock Holmes' amazing facilities of deduction to translating vintage Triumph parts numbers. Just the index below and a few simple tips. Elementary, my dear Watson!