Posts by tag: Bevel Drive

Ducati May 7, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: 1975 Ducati 750GT for Sale

It’s obvious that we’ll continue to see Ducati’s iconic “L-twin” for the foreseeable future, but the recent introduction of their V4 Panigale represents the end of the v-twin superbike era that really began with today’s Featured Listing Ducati 750GT. If you ask anyone to name the earliest Ducati v-twin, one of the Supersports is the one most likely to spring to mind. But this GT was actually the first, and possibly most significant machine to be powered by the elegant and desirable “Round Case” twin.

It’s difficult to overstate how important the v-twin was to Ducati's present fortunes. Prior to the introduction of the 750GT in 1971, Ducati built single-cylinder road and race motorcycles, the most sophisticated of which used their now widespread Desmo heads that eschewed springs for a more precise and positive system of cams to both open and close the valves. But, singles, while profitable and popular in much of the world for their simplicity, economy, and light weight, would never have allowed Ducati to develop a real fan base in that largest and most lucrative of markets: North America.

The original incarnation of the roadgoing v-twin did not include Desmodromic valve actuation: until the Pantah, that was reserved for the Supersport models exclusively. However, it did use a system of tower shafts and bevel gears to operate the cams for very precise timing, and that clockwork masterpiece is a far cry from modern motorcycle engines that are often mercifully hidden behind fairings or a tangle of wires and hoses.

Performance for the 748cc engine was relatively modest by today’s standards, but this was a considered a serious machine and a 750GT can definitely keep up with modern traffic. Braking won’t be up to current standards, but the 60 claimed horses and 407lb dry weight meant a top speed of 125mph, so you can easily out accelerate most cars leaving a stoplight and handling was excellent.

Although only 4,000 or so 750GTs were actually built, they paved the way for Ducati’s big-bike ambitions and their current status as the premier European bike brand, with a balance of sales volume and exotic cachet that extends well beyond the enthusiast market and into the general population. This example is being offered by Moto Borgotaro, a Brooklyn-based shop that specializes in quality classic bikes, maintenance, and restorations.

From the Seller: 1975 Ducati 750GT for Sale

Bike is presented by Moto Borgotaro Inc. located in Brooklyn , N.Y. 

This is a fantastic 3rd production stage 750GT that has a lot touches from the earlier series 750GT's -- I would call this the ultimate rider as that how it was set up... Why? well lets start with the good... complete motor rebuild in 2009 by Mike Duzick of Mikmar Motors, Paxinos, PA. earlier 72' tank and tins, completely rebuilt wheels (high lip Borrani style), frame re-done, chrome redone, new Conti pipes, updated electrical, low bars, newer Avon's.. the works.

Close up, flaws etc... The bike is excellent in person, minor flaws as follows -- dash is cracked (common) and it is the earlier style 3 light, scratch on underside of rt. hand pipe, you only see it if your looking for it, brake lever bent out a bit on the end. No it is not 100% original but frankly the bike is fantastic and Mr. Duzick's motor and restoration is excellent... ride this bike.. this is the one. 

-- There are more than 50 additional photos from restoration. 

DETAILS

  • Third production stage 750GT with earlier body work 
  • Engine # 756389
  • Engine crank on up rebuild in 2009 by Mike Duzick of Mikmar Motors, Paxinos, PA
  • 72' GT tank and tins all re-done in black 
  • Restored seat 
  • New Contis 
  • New Chrome all around 
  • Complete rebuilt wheels 
  • Original shocks
  • Sold with a clean New Jersey title
  • Only 513 miles since restoration in 2009 
  • New Sealed battery 
  • New electrical, and electronic ignition 
  • Newer Avon Roadriders 

The 750GT was probably the most practical of the original v-twins, and this one looks like the perfect collectible, round-case Ducati to actually ride on weekends. I'm a fan of Moto Borgotaro's recent offerings and this bike seems pretty representative of the kind of bikes they've had available in the past: not over-restored, cosmetically "perfect" museum pieces, but extremely clean, well-maintained bikes for collectors who also want to regularly use their acquisitions. Head on over to the eBay listing for some more info, or just to keep an eye on the auction: there are just a couple days left, and bidding is up north of $18,000.

-tad

Featured Listing: 1975 Ducati 750GT for Sale
Ducati January 19, 2018 posted by

Dusty deal? 1982 Ducati MHR900

Collectable motorcycles - especially those from the late 1970s through 1980s - are on the rise. Values have been notching up to the point where many of us can remember when "...you could buy one for (insert paltry sum here)..." This is true of practically any desirable bike in recent memory; for every bike there is a bubble developing. This certainly holds for memorable Ducati models - on the ropes in the late 70s & early 80s, Ducati fought back with a replica model dripping with nostalgia. Hopelessly outgunned by the technology of the Japanese, the 1982 Ducati Mike Hailwood Replica recalled a more successful time for the Bologna factory (specifically, the Isle of Man TT win in '78), and traded outright performance for repli-racer glorly. Today these are 5 figure collector models with a strong following.

1982 Ducati MHR900 for sale on eBay

Essentially an offshoot of the 900 Super Sport of the day, the air-cooled twin utilized a bevel drive to actuate the two-valve desmo heads. Claimed power was a reasonable 64 HP, which was decent in the day. Today this is a laughable sum achievable by entry level cycles, but there is nothing that can compete with the onslaught of time and tech. The pros of power delivery included usable torque throughout the rev range, and a very narrow profile. This was capitalized by the straight section trellis frame, enabling confident handling and impressive lean angles. Improved Marzocchi suspension and upgraded brakes elevated the original MHR from the standard SS. Additional chassi details included magnesium wheels and a model specific fuel tank feeding 40mm Dell'Ortos. Bespoke Conti mufflers completed the visual effect.

By 1982, the differences between the 900SS and the MHR shrunk down to all but bodywork and graphics. Magnesium wheels were replaced by more durable aluminum units. The model-specific gas tank survived, as did the larger carbs. But the real difference between the standard SS and the MHR was the bodywork; a large flowing fairing, tight talk section and new side panels all emblazoned with the star power of Mike Hailwood. Depending upon sources, an estimated 7,000 MHRs were built between 1979 and early 1986. Cagiva's takeover of Ducati in 1985 spelled the end of the bevel twin and the MHR model line.

From the seller:
Here is your chance to buy an extremely rare Ducati that simply does not come up for sale very often. I have owned this bike for over 25 years including back in Australia and brought it to the USA over 15 years ago. I never bothered to title it here as it was in my personal Ducati collection and I rode it very rarely, it had a noisy gearbox bearing on 5th gear so I gave it to a friend who was starting his own European bike repair shop and he was going to take his time and replace the bearing and freshen it up a bit...5 years later I had to take it back in the condition you see it here, I have all the parts safely stored in a plastic tote and it is complete, and the engine covers etc have all been polished. This motorcycle was invited to a special event of hailwoods held at daytona speedway where I got to meet nobby Clarke, Pauline and David hailwood and they all signed my tank, sadly those signatures have all faded but there is pics on the internet somewhere of the meeting and then signing my tank, I also got to ride this bike in the procession lap on the banked track where I got to open her up..I always swore I would never sell this bike and if I don’t get the money I’m asking I doubt I will.this is a matching numbers bike.. I have taken pics of the bike before I cleaned it...it has been in my air conditioned warehouse for the last 10years and will need a good going over, new Tyres etc...cleans up extremely well..

Ducati specs vary greatly within a given model year - partly due to the relaxed attitude of the Italian manufacturer during this time frame, and partly due to the initial destination of the bike in question. For example, US-based bikes came devoid of the Conti pipes due to noise regs (thank you, Mr. EPA). Thus is it not uncommon to find some variances in bikes built in the same year - making collecting a bit more of a challenge. What is stock and original can change from region to region.

This particular seller has committed every sin that RSBFS preaches against when it comes to the advert: Pictures are few and poor, and show a bike that could use a bit of cleaning. Instead of telling us that it "...cleans up extremely well..." it would be of great help to show us - by cleaning it up and *then* taking pictures. Nobody knows what the fiberglass looks like, the condition of the paintwork, etc. It also doesn't help to see that this is not a running bike - and may not be complete. I won't even ask why the rear cylinder is missing when the stated issue was a bearing in the tranny (maybe a bevel expert can help us out there). These are all very important items considering the starting bid opens at a cool $22k USD. Now a clean MHR is will definitely top $20k in today's collector market, but this one feels a bit closer to basket case than concours. I'm not sure the rarity of the model warrants a piecemeal example at this price, and thus far the internet agrees with me at zero bids. Check it out here and share your thoughts. Good luck!!

MI

Dusty deal? 1982 Ducati MHR900
Ducati September 13, 2017 posted by

Classic Heavy Metal: 1980 Ducati Super Sport for Sale

Although it's date-stamped as a 1980 model, this Ducati 900 Super Sport is obviously a sportbike from an even earlier era: twin-shock suspension aside, the engine features vintage, half-faired style and nearly Victorian-era detailing on the engine. A bit of a throwback, this machine is nonetheless significant to modern sportbike fans, as it was the more commonly available update of the original 750 Super Sport that was Ducati's first foray into big sportbikes. These early Super Sports were basically ground zero for the company as it exists today, especially significant as we're now staring down the barrel of the end of Ducati's v-twin superbikes with the introduction of their MotoGP-aping V4.

The 900 Super Sport was introduced in 1975 as an evolution of their iconic, but very limited-production 750 Super Sport. It used an updated version of their overhead-cam, air-cooled v-twin, here punched out to 864cc and fitted with the restyled "square" engine cases to replace the "round" cases on the 750. Keep in mind that, up until the introduction of the rubber-belt Pantah engine, it was only the Super Sport models that had Ducati's spring-less Desmo valve actuation. Combined with a system of tower shafts and bevel gears to drive the cams instead of chains or belts, the "bevel-head" v-twin engine was more Swiss watch than propulsion system, and manufacturing costs were unsurprisingly high, a major reason for the switch to rubber belts.

Aside from the increased displacement, the 900SS featured a number of changes intended to broaden the bike's appeal for the US market, with modern cast aluminum wheels, a quieter exhaust [blasphemy!], improved kick start, and the gearshift redesigned for the left side of the bike. Earlier examples with left-foot shifter used a cumbersome linkage to convert the bike from its original right-foot shift and the new mechanism was much more precise. Originally, the bike came in classic silver with blue graphics, with the black-and-gold scheme seen here introduced in 1979. This particular example has aftermarket bar-end mirrors fitted that are obviously not period-correct, but pretty innocuous and easily removed if you're going for the original, mirror-less style. The engine also features a clear glass "Gear-Gazer" for the upper cylinder's bevel-drive gears, and aftermarket addition but one I'd probably want for myself, originality be damned.

 

From the original eBay listing: 1980 Ducati 900 Super Sport Desmo for Sale

17,066 original miles – Collector owned

Restored to Perfection in 2015

History:

After the round case twins 750 GT, Sport and Super Sport Desmo entered the scene, Ducati management found that the line-up lacked a super sport bike capable of competing with the Japanese superbikes with over 750 cc and the Ducati 900 Super Sport was developed to fill that gap.

Initially, Ducati opted for a more touring-oriented approach, with the 860 GT styled by Giugiaro, that unfortunately did not win the public’s favour. At the same time, however, the Bolognese manufacturer also introduced a sportier version, the 900 Super Sport, reminiscent of the sales success of the gorgeous 750 SS Desmo.
The 860 cc engine was derived from the original L-twin engine conceived for the 750 GT, however with a redesigned, more squared case.

Throughout its history, the 900 SS actually underwent few modifications, from the fuel tank to the light-alloy wheels, and was offered in a gold and black livery, in addition to the classic silver and electric blue colour scheme.

Asking Price: $35,500 obo.

The Buy It Now is listed at $35,500 and for that kind of cash, I'd like a little less "brief history that we probably already know" and more information on the who-what-where of the "restoration." Describing something simply as "restored to perfection" is the kind of thing that can mean different things to different people, although I'd expect that the seller would be happy to answer any questions, and the bike looks terrific in the photographs.

-tad

Ducati August 10, 2017 posted by

Big Bevel – 1984 Ducati MHR Mille

A bit down on their luck in the late seventies and early 1980's, Ducati brought out a string of repli-racers celebrating Mike Hailwood's 1978 Isle of Man win. The ultimate was a 973cc desmodue, claiming 76 hp and and a new frame design. This collector bike has under 3,000 miles and would make an outstanding addition to any stable.

1984 Ducati Mike Hailwood Replica Mille for sale on eBay

Though largely a 900 Super Sport below the waterline, the MHR had the exciting full body and national paint, as well as Marzocchi suspension front and rear, triple Brembo disks, and gold Oscam 18-inch alloys.  The new liter engine used the bevel-gear-driven cams, plain bearings and had a healthy increase in torque to 62 ft.-lbs.

Apparently un-restored, this Mille still has the original rubber, and everything else.  Wafer-thin fairings look excellent, as do the option Conti mufflers.  The Texas owner says this in the eBay auction:

The Hailwood Mille is the final development of the bevel drive engine. This bike has only 4356 km, original condition with orig tires, Conti 2 into 1 exhaust system.  SS front brake lines.  This bike would make a great addition to any Ducati collection.

Riders of a certain age will recall Mike Hailwood as a great champion who drove Formula 1 cars as well as bikes.  Though earlier MHR machines celebrated his comeback TT win, later editions marked his untimely 1981 death.  Either way the MHR made up a healthy percentage of Ducati sales.  Cagiva's Castiglioni brothers liked Ducati's new belt-driven cam engine so much, they bought the company, and wound bevel production down as Ducati finished up development of the 750 F1.  Some collectors focus on a model's introductory years and some see value in later developments.  Often displacement increases are part of the development, in this case a great reason to look into this very collectible Mike Hailwood Replica.

-donn

Big Bevel – 1984 Ducati MHR Mille
Ducati September 9, 2016 posted by

Old School Class: 1980 Ducati 900SS for Sale

1980-ducati-900ss-r-side

This very classic black-and-gold Ducati 900SS represents the polar opposite of the little two-strokes that have been cropping up on our site lately. Both are motivated by v-twin engines, but that's where the similarities end. One was a product of ruthless and very close competition between arch rivals and used cutting-edge technology to eke out the barest advantages over competing machines. The other is a slightly long-in-the-tooth thug that uses thumping big cylinders, past glories, and oodles of Latin charm to win friends and influence people. Guess which one is which?

1980-ducati-900ss-r-side-engine

Powered by the restyled "square case" motor that was introduced in 1975, Ducati's 900SS actually displaced 864cc. The evolutionary 900SS also came with improved or modified features to improve performance and make the bike more palatable to US buyers, including quieter stock mufflers and a shift mechanism meant to improve on the the version available on previous models that crudely relocated the lever to the left side of the bike.

1980-ducati-900ss-dash
Ducati's 900SS was far from cutting-edge technology by the time the 1980s rolled around: twins were pretty passe in the new era of inline-four superbikes from Japan. And Ducati's famous desmodromic valve-actuation was probably no real advantage for a twin with a redline of 8,500rpm. But European bikes still represented the pinnacle of handling at this point, and although the bevel-drive, Desmo twin probably had just an insignificant performance advantage over comparable rivals, the Swiss watch-like arrangement of shafts and gears and cam lobes used to open and close the bike's four valves seems like engineering overkill. Not practical, but inherently cool.
From the original eBay listing: 1980 Ducati 900SS for Sale
I bought this bike brand new in late 1979, and have owned and maintained it this entire time.   This bike is unrestored, so the decals show cracking (typical), and the bike has it's share of minor scuffs (see pics).   This 900SS was delivered with 36mm carbs and Silentium pipes, which were exchanged for the Delloro 40s and authentic Contis you see in the pictures a few years into it's life.   I also put on the factory solo seat at the same time.    Other modifications (all typical) are SS brakelines, WORKS suspension front and rear from BevelHeaven, longer clutch actuation arm (you really want this!), V-Two Gear Gazer, and Dyna Coils.  All original parts come with the bike, except for the Silentiums (they were typically tossed in the trash) and the wimpy 36mm Dellortos. 
Mechanically the bike is excellent.   It's starts easily, idles at about 1,500rpm (good for a 900SS with 40s and Contis), and pulls strong.  The carbs and ignition are very well sorted.  Inside, it's had new rings and clutch some years back, refreshed pickup wires (they all need this eventually), and MBR collets on the last valve adjustment (totally worth it).  Common for the period, the low dogs on the 1st gear slider were removed in it's first year or so.  Since I've owned this bike it's entire life, I have (nearly all) the maintenance records from new, which are available on request. 
Motorcycle Classics did a nice feature article on this bike about 8 years ago:   search "motorcycle classics moto-guzzi-le-mans-versus-ducati-900-ss"
Hit me with any questions.   I have mixed feelings about selling this bike, but over the last 8 years it's only been out once or twice a year, so time for someone else to enjoy it.

His asking price is $39,000 for this very nice example, although bidding is up to just over $15,000, with the reserve not met. The 900SS was produced in much greater numbers than the preceding "round case" 750SS, but values are still going through the roof for all bevel-drive Ducatis, and even the much-maligned 860GT has been increasing in price steadily in recent years. While the blue-and-silver paint on other examples may have a stronger link to Ducati's racing success, you can't argue with the black with gold striping seen here and, for all the grief Giorgetto Giugiaro got for his styling on the 860GT, he also designed that classic Ducati logo.

-tad

1980-ducati-900ss-l-side

Old School Class: 1980 Ducati 900SS for Sale
Ducati February 23, 2016 posted by

Invoking Dharma – 1978 Ducati 900 SD Custom

Eye-catching but not an original 900 SS, this lookalike might be a good alternative for a value-conscious bevel fan.  Presumably customized from a standard 900 Darmah, the tank and fairings present the SS aura and looks better than most originals.

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom left

1978 Ducati 900 SD Custom for sale on eBay

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom right front

With single overhead cams driven by a right-angle gear, the 864 cc's author 74 hp at 7,500 rpm.  Specs are good for the day, 5-speed, right-side up Ceriani forks, twin rear shocks.  Triple-disc Brembo brakes are 280mm front and 260mm rear.  Classic items such as kick-only start and dual Dell'Orto carburetors may require a period mechanic for any serious work.

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom dash

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom right engine

Using Ducati body parts or very good replicas, this custom looks great with under 8,000 miles indicated, and features a classic Ducati color with polished fuel tank.  Very showy with alloy rims and stainless spokes.  You know you've got a fan when you see the glass bevel view cover !

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom bevel window

From the eBay auction:

Beautiful one of a kind 1978 Ducati 900SS Custom. Not an original 900SS. Matching engine and frame numbers.  Smiths gauges.  Kick start only - no electric start.  Runs perfectly - recently serviced in November of 2015.  Clean - Excellent condition - paint is perfect.  Handmade aluminum polished gas tank turns heads. Alloy wheels with polished stainless steel spokes. Del Orto 38mm carbs. New Ducati (Ducati Yellow- looks orange) paint. Odometer shows 7938 miles. This bike draws crowds wherever it  is parked - shows beautifully!  Very small ding in tank near seat - will send pictures upon request.  An all original SS goes for double the price!  Great for twisty roads - handles beautifully.

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom left engine

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom left front wheel

The '78 900 SS reviewed with a solid chassis, suspension that was good after set-up, great brakes, and an engine that wouldn't win any drag races but had great presence out on the road.  Likely all true with this 900 SS commemorative,  if you hear what this bike is saying, it will be regardless of whether it's original or not...

-donn

20160223 1978 ducati 900 ss custom cockpit

Invoking Dharma – 1978 Ducati 900 SD Custom