Update 6.12.13: I’m getting a lot of email to alert me that this rare specimen is back on eBay. Originally listed in January, it now has an opening bid of $30k, which is $10k less than previous. And it appears no reserve. Thanks all! Links updated, -dc
Do you want the best of everything? Do you want the coolest Ducati bevel desmo twin ever created? Do you want to show a bike at Pebble Beach and know that nobody there has ever seen another one? This will be the last time you will ever get the chance to own one of these.
These opening words, provided by the seller, really do tell the story of the rarity of this particular bike. Besides, I fall for a quality custom frame the way Ian swoons over radiators or the way Rem eyes a hot pink 90′s Gixxer. You had me at the first weld…..
C&J was a custom frame builder that primarily specialized in dirt track racers, although they also built a few road racers. As the story goes, they even built a handful of TZ frames for the famed Erv Kanemoto in the 1970s. These racers were ridden by the likes of Gary Nixon, Gary Fisher and Freddie Spencer. It looks like the original C&J changed hands just after the turn of the millenium, after which little information is available. With the original frame company seemingly imploded, this particular Ducati-powered C&J special becomes even more of a rarity.
As for the rest of the bike, the seller does a great job of highlighting the features:
From the seller:
C&J DUCATI 900 Lightweight Special, 1 of 3 Built!
This motorcycle is one of the most unique and beautiful Ducatis ever to be offered for sale. This is one of three produced by Mark Henry and C&J Racing Frames in 1987. The inspiration was the new, at that time, Ducati F-1 which offered state of the art styling and handling but an engine that was considerably cheapened when compared to the labor intensive, traditional, old world craftsmanship of the bevel drive desmo engines like the one that took Mike Hailwood to victory at the Isle of Man TT races a few years earlier. This bike is very exclusive and very well conceived and executed.
The C&J frame is carefully designed and constructed of high quality, light weight, 4130 chrome moly tubing. C&J achieved a very strong and light structure. The frame also has some nice features. The steering head angle is steeper and adjustable in a 2* range to get the feel that you like. The rear suspension is a mono-shock design that reduces the wheelbase considerably to 58 inches for fast steering.
The fiberglass tank, tail section, fender, and fairing are the highest quality products you will ever see. Mark Henry had these carefully made at Fiber Systems, his company. The custom paint work in pearl white and green metallic with black striping is stunning.
Suspension on this bike is upgraded to the highest spec adjustable Marzocchi M1R front forks and Works Performance aluminum remote reservoir mono-shock. Nothing but the best!
Braking is handled by the absolute top of the line Brembo gold components up front featuring twin floating discs and 4 piston race spec calipers. Rear braking also features quality Brembo parts. This bike stops!
Real Marvic magnesium wheels are mounted, front and rear. Light weight, expensive, and worth the every penny!
Other features are custom billet aluminum triple clamps with the lower clamp acting as a brake line junction, genuine Ducati gauges and switchgear, Ducati F-1 foot controls, and gorgeous custom Bub exhaust.
What about the engine? Engine number 086784 has around 50 miles on it since a complete rebuild by the famous Dr. Desmo of Evanston IL. The displacement is 905cc(88mmx74.4mm) and I have 8, hand written pages of assembly notes with dimensions that are included. Features noted are 42mm and 38mm mille valves, aluminum clutch kit, stainless screw set, gear gazer, heavy breather, aluminum oil filter cover, aluminum tower tubes, and lightened clutch assembly. This engine has the right stuff and was built by a world renown artist.
My bike is very special and is essentially brand new. It has only traveled around 50 miles since it was completed in December of 1999 by bevel expert Mike Dusik, owner of Mikmar Motors in Paxinos PA. It has been living in my climate controlled “museum” at my house for the last 13 years. It comes with a number of original receipts dating back to 1987 and some notes and a few old pictures. It also comes with the ultra-rare glossy C&J sales brochure from 1987 and a somewhat rough copy of the aforementioned June 1987 Motorcyclist magazine. It comes with a clear PA title. An extra bonus comes in the form of a spare, painted, fairing and front fender.
Note: Speedometer mileage does not reflect actual mileage estimated to be 50 miles.
First titled in November of 1998, frame purchased in 1987, bike completed in 1999. Bike titled as 1977 to match engine serial number.
Custom-framed bikes are a bit of an oddity on the open market. In some cases they lack the history or awareness in order to sell for big bucks (often selling for less than the sum of the parts), while in other cases the frame-up build adds an exclusivity buyers are willing to pay for. Which one is this? I haven’t a clue.
This bike is availble right now for a cool 40 grand. That’s right. $40,000 US dollars (or best offer) will buy what appears to be an attempt to out Super Sport an original Ducati Super Sport. Does the C&J name and the quality of the build warrant that kind of number? Buyers will be the ultimate judge. Check it out here and then jump back and tell us what you think.