The Triumph Motorcycle That Cost American Pickers $3,500
For now-22 seasons, “American Pickers” has taken viewers across the continental United States in search of one thing: rusty gold. Hidden along the backroads of America lie historical artifacts, trinkets, and treasures that may look like old junk, but in reality, are worth loads of money. These are the items that Mike Wolfe, Danielle Colby, and Frank Fritz — until his recent firing — pursue every day, doing their best not to break the bank. At the same time, though, they’re not afraid to fork over staggering amounts of money from time to time to folks who have been sitting on a fortune without even realizing it.
In case you’ve never turned on “American Pickers,” just know it’s no exaggeration that they’ll buy pretty much anything if it has some real value to it. Over the past 11, soon to be 12, years, everything from classic Coca-Cola vending machines to giant shoes have made their way onto the small screen and into the Antique Archaeology inventory. Although, it should come as no surprise that the “Pickers” crew has collectively developed a few areas of expertise in that time, the most notable among them being items relating to transportation — classic cars, motorcycles, and the like.
Given their love for anything with a motor, it’s not uncommon for the team to offer up big paydays to those looking to sell something in that ballpark. For example, they once scored a Triumph motorcycle for one easy payment of $3,500. Here’s the story behind the purchase.
A rare bike in excellent condition
For this pick, let’s take a trip back to the Season 3 episode of “American Pickers,” “What’s in the Box.” As usual, Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz were on the road when they stopped at a barn owned by a man named Paul, which was packed to the ceiling with all kinds of things. In typical “Pickers” fashion, the duo got right to work sifting through the mountains of stuff set before them, digging a bit before they made their first discovery. Tucked in a corner in prime condition sat a 1967 Triumph Bonneville — a fairly uncommon find according to Wolfe, especially in such good shape.
As the tenured “Pickers” host explained, this specific type of motorcycle was manufactured from 1959 to 1974, hence why there aren’t so many around in the modern-day. Naturally, Wolfe asked Paul if he’d be willing to part with it, and he responded with an initial price of $4,000. Though Wolfe wasn’t so keen on the offer, upon learning that all it needs is a tune-up, he countered with $3,500, and the rest is history — leaving him room for a $1,500 profit once he sells it for $5,000. Of course, before he packed it up, Wolfe took it for a brief test run, and it rode like a dream.
“American Pickers” showcases motorcycles and motorcycle parts all the time, but it’s rare to see one road-ready from the moment it arrives on-screen. Suffice to say, this $3,500 loss was anything but.