Freshman Seminars

FRS 106: Art and Science of Motorcycle Design STL

A course offered from 2009- present.

Michael Littman

Richard L. Smith Freshman Seminar.

This is a hands-on seminar and laboratory experience about the engineering design of motorcycles. Students will restore a vintage Triumph motorcycle and will compare it to previous restorations of the same make and model of motorcycle from other years (1955, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1962, 1963, and 1964). No previous shop or laboratory experience is necessary, and we welcome liberal arts students as well as engineering students. MAE Technical Staff Member Jon Prevost will assist Professor Littman in laboratory.

Students will examine, disassemble, model, test, and rebuild a vintage motorcycle. All motorcycle subsystems will be considered with special attention to the power, structural, and control subsystems. Classic and modern engineering tools to be used include computer-aided design (CAD) software for the documentation and prototyping of engine parts, engine simulation software for understanding factors affecting engine performance, and engine brake dynamometer for determination of engine power and torque. Students will assess and restore motorcycle components. Precise measurement, repair, and redesign (where appropriate) of key parts will include the restoration of cylinder, piston, head, cam, valves, transmission, brakes, fork, oil system, clutch and chain. Students will also inspect and restore all electrical system components as needed and disassemble, clean, repaint, and restore the frame and suspension.


1959 Triumph Tiger Cub

AY 2023-24


1954 Triumph Tiger Cub

AY 2022-23


54 Terrier

AY 2021 – 2022

Tiger Cub – Zoomers

AY 2020-2021


’60-2 Tiger Cub 

AY 2019-2020

’60 Tiger Cub
AY 2018-2019

1963 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’63-2 Tiger Cub
AY 2017-2018

1958 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’58 Tiger Cub
AY 2016-2017

1965 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’65 Tiger Cub
AY 2015-2016

1957 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’57 Tiger Cub
AY 2014-2015

1956 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’56 Terrier
AY 2013-2014

1959 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’59 Tiger Cub
AY 2012-2013

1964 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’64 Tiger Cub
AY 2011-2012

1963 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’63 Tiger Cub
AY 2010-2011

1962 Tiger Cub Motorcycle’62 Tiger Cub
AY 2009-2010

Triumph Motorcycles Timeline_ Recovery and Growth 1946-1962

Triumph Motorcycles Timeline_ The Glory Years, 1963-1972

Images below from the following web-sites ….

list of specifications for triumph motorcycles