Posts by tag: 900

Norton October 12, 2017 posted by

Throwback Thursday: 1974 Norton Commando Fastback

In the mid-20th Century, Norton occupied rarefied standing in motorcycling, making itself legendary among racers in Britain and Europe, taking home Manx TT trophies and trading wins with other big names on the continent and in the Isles. Its big-bore engines and revolutionary vibration-isolating frame designs made the brand wildly popular, cutting edge and fast.

1974 Norton Commando Fastback for sale on eBay

By the 1970s, Britain's notorious knack for corporate mismanagement and reliability woes had hit the company hard, and as it tried to make its Commando - which had debuted in the late '60s with yet another innovative suspension setup - all things to all people, it was being outgunned by Japanese rivals.

The Norton Commando Fastback had helped debut the badge, and by 1974 was essentially just a sportier-looking seat and fender setup for the popular-but-flawed platform.

The 1974 example seen here is in excellent condition, and carries a raft of modifications to the parallel twin, including a displacement bump, big carbs and a high-compression RH7 head from an earlier Commando 750. We dig the era-appropriate copper-bronze paint, the overstuffed seat and simple, purposeful stance.

From the eBay listing:

900 CC.. BALANCED WITH LIGHTER SOLID STEEL FLYWHEEL.. 80MM BORE.. 36 MM MK2 CARBS MATCHED TO A RH7 HEAD.. BIG BORE EXHAUST. CLOSE RATIO GEARBOX WITH QUAIFE SHELL.((( MOSTLY FOR DOWN SHIFTING TO LESSEN GEARBOX STRAIN))) BIKE HAS NO ISSUES.. LOOK INSIDE MUFFLERS TO SEE HOW CLEAN IT RUNS..STARTS WITHIN 2 OR 3 KICKS AND WILL IDLE AT 500 RPM. EVEN WITH BIG CARBS... E MAIL FOR MORE INFO. E MAIL FOR PHONE NUMBER AND WILL CALL BACK IF SERIOUS. OTHERWISE PLEASE DONT WASTE MY TIME

Rarer than Japanese bikes of the same era, albeit a lot more temperamental, the big Norton is a time capsule to the end of the era of British manufacturing might, rendered in the brutal simplicity that made the breed famous.

Throwback Thursday: 1974 Norton Commando Fastback
Ducati June 15, 2017 posted by

Low-Mile Monster: 1999 Ducati M900 Cromo for Sale

Nice first-generation Ducati M900 Monsters are getting very hard to find: they've been very affordable machines for the past few years and get used accordingly, ridden hard instead of being squirreled away in garages as collector items. Certainly, that's what I've done with mine... But if you're looking for a pristine machine to ride or if you're a speculator expecting them to increase in value, you can't go wrong with this very nice, low-mileage Monster Cromo... Assuming you don't get blinded looking at it!

The 1999 Monster was the end of the line for the carbureted engine, as it was followed by the 900ie in 2000 that featured fuel injection. Whether that's a plus or a minus is up for debate: purists might prefer the carburetors, but the fuel injection system used was a good one, and certainly makes maintenance simpler. It also used the frame originally borrowed from the 888, whereas later Monsters switched to an ST2-derived item that increased stability, but was claimed by critics to be less agile.

Basically, the Monster was a parts-bin special: a superbike frame that had seen plenty of racetrack development, an existing air-cooled two-valve engine for modest performance and tons of character, along with off-the-shelf, budget suspension that worked great for point-and-squirt antics and posing. Basically, the only new parts were the dash, the tank, and the tail. It was relatively affordable, stylish, fun, and simple. The parts-bin quality actually makes the Monster great for customizers, as many bits from other Ducati models will fit. In fact, today's Monster Cromo was one of Ducati's first attempts at a limited-edition, custom-style machine.

From the original eBay listing: 1999 Ducati Monster Cromo for Sale

Pristine, 1300 mile Ducati M900 Monster Cromo. Carbureted, only 101 imported into the U.S.

In 1999, Ducati released a special edition of the Monster. They called it the Cromo, and it was obviously named due to the distinctive tank, which was complemented by a carbon fiber rear seat cover and rear fender. It also got adjustable front forks and the high-po 74 horsepower engine.

This Monster Cromo is as nice as you will find. I bought it as a rider, finding out later how rare this model is. Should go to a Ducati collector. Besides a little age related fading on the carbon fiber fenders, this bike is almost showroom quality. A professional or dedicated detailing would bring it to that standard. Tank is gorgeous and blinding with no dents. no corrosion on the bike, seat is like new.

Starts, runs, rides, stops, shifts out like a 1300 mile bike. Not even broken in yet. When I got it I aired up the tires, flushed the hydraulic fluid in the clutch, cleaned, tightened and lubed the chain and rode it one time. Fires instantly, all electrics work as they should. Did not want to do anymore riding until I replaced the original tires and timing belts.

NOTE: I PULLED THE HORIZONTAL CYLINDER TO CHECK THE BELT TODAY (6/8) LOOKS LIKE NEW. SOFT PLIABLE, NO CRACKS, FRAYING, ETC.

This is a stunning motorcycle. Always garage stored.

Clear title in my name. Owners manual, Ducati service manual, both keys, original selling dealer folder. Also a quick release tank bag that mounts to the gas filler bracket and does not touch the tank when mounted. Wired for 12 volt accessories.

I'm assuming he means that he pulled the belt cover for the horizontal cylinder, not the cylinder... With just 1,900 miles on the odometer, this is an extremely nice Ducati Monster and is completely stock, including that famously awful rear fender, and the faded front and rear carbon mudguards are available from the aftermarket if their condition offends. The $7,999 asking price is very high for a Ducati Monster, but seems reasonable considering the rarity and quality. If the tank is a bit too much for your subtle tastes, you can always remove the chromed part and store it or sell it and replace it with a less... bling-y item. Maybe a carbon-fiber tank?

-tad

Benelli March 15, 2017 posted by

Italian Week Continues: 1983 Benelli SEI 900

We seem to be celebrating an Italian theme on RSBFS this week. That is not too surprising, as pound-for-pound the Italians produce more lust-worthy hardware than most. I'm not discounting the ruthless efficiency of German machines, nor the bright spots in the Japanese flood of scooters; however if you tally up the total number of bikes produced by a given nation and identify what makes you drool, one small country stands out above the rest. Why? A unique combination of passion and performance would be the likely answer. Can we name a few brands that we might like to own? The list is long and glorious: Ducati, Bimota, Moto Guzzi, Moto Morini, Cagiva, Laverda, Aprilia and MV Agusta. That doesn't even count the bespoke builders of dreams: Mondial, Morbidelli or Ghezzi-Brian. Have I missed one? Probably more than a few. Nobody but the Italians are able to artfully blend the focus of performance with visceral good looks and color. Today's example is this gorgeous Benelli SEI 900.

1983 Benelli SEI 900 for sale on eBay

Look past the miles-deep pool of red paint. Shield your eyes from the sparkle of the chrome. Ignore the mags, the quarter fairing, the set and the stance. Strip everything away and go back to basics. In this case it is a fabulous 900cc inline six banger. The first to release a six cylinder into production - originally a 750 - the Benelli SEI 900 utilized a larger bore & stroke to provide additional motivational might. With a quarter fairing evoking a period Laverda or Moto Guzzi, the SEI was a technological, aural and visual bombshell of the time. Eschewing the 750's six-into-six exhaust in favor of a six-into-two, the SEI looked more like a normal motorcycle from the side, although from the front it was all but impossible to hide the width. This seller obviously cares about this bike and it's history, so we'll let him pick up the story.

From the seller:
There is a good article that says this is probably 1 of approximately 80 Seis 900s imported to the US. “By the end of production in 1989, fewer than 2,000 examples of the 900 Sei had been built; some sources claim no more than 80 of them made it to the U.S. market.” (Motorcycle Classics, May/June 2015).

1983 BENELLI SEI 900
Built June 1982, titled 1983
VIN: ZBNB0AB00DP011261 Engine No: BGB011248

History:

Original owner (name unknown) bought and rode the bike a little over 9000 miles and then parked the bike in his collection. No significant changes were made. In 1987, second owner (Sterling, MA) bought part of the collection including this Sei 900. The second owner was told it did not run so he stored it in a shop intending to restore it, but never rode it. He sold it to me in mid-2014. I cleaned the carbs, etc. and it started!

I did a complete 1 year effort to do a ground up restoration; inspecting and replacing anything needed except one thing: it has the ORIGINAL BODY PAINT!

Mechanically inside this bike looked like new, still crosshatches on cylinders, great compression, good shifting, etc. Fortunately, the tank was very clean. Outside it had some rust on the frame, wheels, and rear drive chain.

Key restoration items include the following:

- Powder coat the frame and wheels
- All new wheel bearings and brake seals/pads
- Replaced the starter gear and shaft and 2 bearings in the transmission
- Honed cylinders and light valve grind
- New seals and gaskets throughout
- New fork tubes and dampers
- Rebuilt carburetors
- 1 new badge (original missing)
- New seat cover, fuel cocks, and rubber parts
- Re-chromed original exhaust system and other chromed parts

Majority of these parts were original Benelli replacement parts bought from Benelli-Bauer GmbH in Germany.

Upgrades not original style parts include:

- New complete electronic ignition system
- New regulator/rectifier system (original alternator like new)
- New rear shocks
- New rear drive chain and sprockets
- New tires and battery
- K & N air cleaners
- Some new stainless steel hardware

It had 9,272 miles on it when I bought it; it has 10,008 miles now.

Runs and rides absolutely GREAT! Starts instantly, although a bit cold blooded (needs a few miles to warm up). Pulls evenly and shifts fine. And yes, it is as smooth as the books and reviews say.

Sure, in comparison to some Japanese, upgraded-spec, chain-saw razor with pipes and slicks, this SEI is a flat dog. If your idea of riding involves pre-mix and a quarter liter of squish band, feel free to look away. But somehow I doubt a true enthusiast can look at this and not be in awe - even a little - at what Benelli has created. Once owned by the legendary DeTomaso namesake, you can be sure that performance (such as it may be defined) exists within. This seller has done a tremendous job on the restoration of this machine, as well as the presentation. There is strong interest in this auction, and I'm sure a new owner will be celebrating the arrival of a dream very soon. If you're into Benelli (or even if you've only just discovered these marvelous machines), act quickly. Very few SEIs came stateside, and very, very few are in this level of condition. Check it out here, and let us know what you think. Viva Italia indeed!

MI

Ducati February 19, 2017 posted by

Ride it like Mike: 1980 Ducati 900 MHR

The history of Ducati racing is long and storied. And while many riders have tasted success on the booming twins from Bologna, perhaps none have matched the exploits of Mike "The Bike" Hailwood. In honor of their legendary rider and his comeback success in the 1978 TT (Tourist Trophy), Ducati created the 900 MHR (Mike Hailwood replica) in 1979 - and continued the model through the mid 1980s. Meant to replicate the racer, the 900 MHR edition had everything it needed to go fast, and nothing else. As a prime example of weight savings, Ducati omitted the electric starter and went with the lighter, old-school method of kick starting. Given the TT background, the occasional bump start would likely also be OK.

1980 Ducati 900 MHR for sale on eBay

The MHR series of bikes was the last major evolution of the bevel drive desmo twin before the introduction of the "rubber band" Pantah. It exudes all of the wonderful charismatic noises and idiosyncrasies of these early Ducatis, while offering up a rare and unique ownership experience. These bikes are not exactly plentiful as far as this era of Ducati goes, as Ducati were simply not moving many bikes period. Nor are they particularly powerful; Ducati rated the L-twin desmo at a mere 72 horsepower back in 1980. That is not a lot by today's standards, nor was it a lot by the Japanese four-cylinder standards of the early 1980s. What the Ducati did have to offer was torque - significant amounts of lower RPM grunt, fed through a dry clutch and 5-speed gearbox. Easier to ride fast through changing conditions than the hyper-strung Japanese multis, it's no wonder that Ducati dominated the TT (Mike Hailwood might have had something to do with that as well).

From the seller:
Ducati 900 SS MHR original 13700 KM (8600mile).
Motorcycle not Mint condition, Very good Running !.
Has crack original screen.
chips and scratch on original paint.
some surface rust.
Brake good working.
Electric works,
Please see more picture for detail.
Kick only Model.
Very rare to find Vintage Bevel Desmo Twin.

The seller has offered some good pictures on this bike, but not too much by way of information. One little bit of info that is definitely missing is the whereabouts of the factory lowers and side panels. The MHR model came with a full envelope of fiberglass, yet this bike is only listed with the upper fairing and windscreen. I do not believe the original lowers are still available from the factory, meaning that 3rd party lowers would need to be sourced to truly complete the bike. Otherwise, this Southern California-based machine looks to be in pretty good condition for a 37 year old import.

We have seen Ducati prices fluctuate wildly over the years on RSBFS. This bike has been bid to up over $13,000 USD and it looks like it will sell. It would be well-bought at the current figure, but I would expect it to go up as we get closer to the close of auction. We have seen these models listed for double this amount in years past - albeit in more complete condition. Fun Fact: These Mike Hailwood Replica machines are not exactly the Holy Grail of rarity when it comes to Ducatis; and estimated 7,000 MHRs were built between 1979 and 1986, making the MHR model the the most numerous of all the bevel-drive twin models made. Still, owning a Ducati from this period does place you in an exclusive group. It is a fantastic looking machine, and likely to fare well in the future. And it is eminently enjoyable today as something you can ride. What more can you ask for? Check it out here, and let us know what you think!

MI

Ride it like Mike: 1980 Ducati 900 MHR
Bimota December 28, 2016 posted by

Featured Listing – 2000 Bimota DB4 with Performance Kit

Update 12.28.2016: Now listed on eBay as well. Good luck to buyers and seller! -dc

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-left-front

After dabbling with Japanese powertrains, Bimota formed a long-standing relationship with Ducati, and used the 904cc desmodue in several designs. The DB4 used an extraordinary alloy trellis frame to help keep the kg's off, updated the cams to add top end, and this DB4 has a carburetor / exhaust power kit.

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20161103-2000-bimota-db4-right-front

The oval-section alloy frame weighs just 5 kg., and has 43mm Paoli forks in front, with alloy swingarm and Ohlins monoshock out back.  Brembo supplies the brakes, 320mm fronts with 230mm rear.  The modern-looking bodywork provides an easy seat height and was supplied with or without lowers, this owner showing off the carbon clutch cover, which complements the carbon front and rear mudguards.

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-left

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-binnacle

This DB4 has been treated to a comprehensive performance upgrade including Moto Course exhaust, and Keihin carburetors, accomodated by an updated fuel tank.  From the Las Cruces, NM Craigslist posting -

It has the Moto-Point Performance Kit on it that consists of a handmade Corse Ti exhaust, Kei-Hin FCR Flat Slide Carbs, Air Filters, New Fuel Tank, Oil Cooler Lines, All Stainless Brake & Clutch Lines, and a few other little bits. All stock parts have been retained as you can see in the photos and come with the bike. I also installed a Ducati Corse Carbon open clutch cover and sprocket cover. It runs well and is a blast to ride, also sounds amazing!

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-right-muffler

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-right-rear-unfaired

This original-owner machine has only 6,500 and change miles, and the tri-colore paint looks great.  Fairing lowers and take-off parts are included.

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-right-spares

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-right-engine

The DB4 reviewed as a sharp-handling lightweight, needing just a few more ponies, and this owner has taken steps to provide them.  Very rare with only a few hundred total production, and just a handful in the U.S.  The owner asks $13,000 and can be reached via his Craigslist ad or on eBay.

-donn

20161103-2000-bimota-db4-rear

Featured Listing – 2000 Bimota DB4 with Performance Kit
Ducati December 24, 2015 posted by

Umm, hey Santa ? – 2000 Ducati MH900E

In flannel red and just in time for gift giving season, the prince of retro commemoratives.  Styled by Pierre Terblanche in honor of Mike Hailwood's 1978 Isle of Man win, the MH900E is a mix of leading edge and vintage, in both looks and technology.

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e right

2000 Ducati MH900E for sale on eBay

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e left front

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e right fairing

Red and silver from nose to tail, the MH900E has a showy trellis frame and endurance-inspired fairing.  The venerable 904cc air-cooled desmodue pushes just 75 ponies, with a nice torque band courtesy of electronic fuel injection.  Two-into-two exhaust exits behind the solo seat.  Chain drive, six-speed, dry clutch all standard.  Suspension is more current with 43mm upside down forks and Paoli monoshock on the spaceframe swingarm.  Brakes are thankfully modern, dual 4-piston 320mm disks, and a lone 220mm disk at the rear.

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e binnacle

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e left engine

Offered by an Oregon dealer, this MH900E looks impeccable, with 1,476 miles and no visible updates.  No mention of maintenance, so that would be a discussion item unless it's going in the dining room.  Photos show the full Monte of t-shirt, plaque and paperwork for number 1609 of 2000.

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e right front

20151223 2000 ducati mh900e left

This is actually Ducati's third Hailwood commemorative, the 1979 was a repli-racer, and the 1984 a tribute shortly after his death.  Tested as a vintage handler, read stable and torquey.  Evidently a surprisingly enjoyable ride, not so different than a 900SS, but maybe not all day because of the long reach to the handgrips and high footpegs.  Most are subject to shelf wear rather than real wear and tear, few appear with more than break-in miles.  The run of 2000 sold out quickly, now MH prices are all over the map, this one actually on the lower end of the curve.  Santa, mine will need new belts and tires, and likely bar-backs and adjustable pegs, because it'll be a rider - at least an oil change or two per year...  Happy Christmas !

-donn

Umm, hey Santa ? – 2000 Ducati MH900E