Author Archives: Donn

Triumph February 20, 2016 posted by Donn

Dirty, Mean, and Naked – 2003 Triumph Speed Triple

Built since 1994 and still in Triumph’s line-up, the Speed Triple is into its third decade of success and this 13 year-old offering looks like it might’ve rolled out of the showroom last week.  An edition with better engine, frame, bodywork, and nicely customized, this Speed Triple has understated good looks and seems ready for a lot more fun.

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple left

2003 Triumph Speed Triple for sale on eBay

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple right front

Using the 955 cc fuel-injected engine from the Daytona 955i, the Speed Triple has 120 hp available.  Sporting the double-tube aluminum perimeter frame but new bodywork designed by Gareth Davies, with separate handlebar, engine, and seat fairings.  45mm forks from Showa are adjustable, as is the rear monoshock.  4-piston front calipers grip 320mm disks, with 220mm rear.  3-spoke alloy wheels are lighter than previous years.

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple right

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple cockpit

Nothing looks better than black, at least for the first few miles, and this Speed Triple is in super shape for 20,000 miles.  Not much on this bike has escaped update or improvement – from clip-ons to rearsets, and tuned forks to carbon hugger, it’s just about a show bike.  Too much to list, but the eBay auction states:

Two-owner bike, I purchased it in 2008 from the original owner in Arizona and I have a clean title in hand. It has just under 20k miles. I bought the bike basically bone-stock and invested a significant amount of time and money to turn it into this one-of-a-kind head turner. I’ve removed the handlebar and added clip-ons, as well as changing to a Rizoma rear set, which improves the riding position to be similar to a true sport bike. It’s been custom dealer-tuned by Struthers Bros. in Des Moines to best match the upgrades made to the bike. It has an awesome pop and burble when rolling off the throttle. This bike has class and attitude and gets respect from both the sport bike and the cruiser guys. Exceptionally low miles for this model year and mechanically and cosmetically near perfect.   There are no leaks, squeaks or rattles. Always garage-kept and covered.  Never ridden in the rain.

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple left rear wheel

20160220 2003 triumph speed triple right front wheel

The lack of bodywork that makes it so easy around town collects its due when speeds rise, as rider comfort and stability at speed were not part of the specs.  But for the cafe or the boulevard, this is the fun machine.  The owner of this bike has been all over it, replacing plastic with carbon, chrome with stainless, even updating the headlight lenses.  Not just a cosmetic exercise, the engine has been tuned to the exhaust, suspension tuned, bearings and brakes improved.   A surprising list of included spares and maintenance supplies complete the picture and make this Speed Triple worth a second or third look, maybe after you park it at the show…


20160220 2003 triumph speed triple front

Dirty, Mean, and Naked – 2003 Triumph Speed Triple
Ducati February 18, 2016 posted by Donn

Emotional Detachment – 2003 Ducati 999

With a light update to the relatively new Testastretta engine, but a comprehensive re-design to the frame and fairing, the Ducati 999 turned a lot of heads.  Styling was radical after the 916/996/998 years, and though the fairing did a great job of protecting the rider, some Ducatisti weren’t able to look back until the 1098 arrived in 2007.  But the 999 went out and won the WSBK crown in 2003, ’04, and ’06, and this Pierre Terblanche-designed bike has been treated to some nice updates.

20160218 2003 ducati 999 right

2003 Ducati 999 for sale on eBay

20160218 2003 ducati 999 left rear

Under the controversial bodywork, the trellis frame has 43mm Showa forks up front and fully adjustable monoshock out back ( though these have been updated to Ohlins ).  The radial mounted Brembos are some of the best brakes in the business, 320mm fronts and 245mm rear.  Beside the  140 hp from the desmoquattro, the 999 is notable for adjustable levers, footpegs, and steering head, as well as the seat console being movable forward and back.  The underseat exhaust ends in a canister catalyst / muffler which also generated some unfavorable comments for not being so racey.

20160218 2003 ducati 999 odometer

20160218 2003 ducati 999 right clutch

The red fairing on this 999 has been updated with carbon lowers, side scoops, and trim panels, and looks  great for its 8,300 miles.  Factory Showa dampers have been updated, performance clutch, and the exhaust is now Termignoni.  Spares include an ECM, mirrors, and a full set of bodywork.  From the eBay auction:

Red with half carbon fiber fairings, full titanium termignoni exhaust, öhlins suspensions (front & rear), brembo brakes (front & rear), lots of carbon fiber trim pieces, exposed dry primary clutch, well maintained (second owner), tires in good condition,  always stored under cover in garage.
Comes with everything shown in photos.
  • front & rear wheel stands
  • custom Ducati 999 cover
  • repair manual 
  • spare ECM
  • second full set of fairings
  • extra set of mirrors 
  • spare rear spring for riders over 200lbs
  • spare passenger seat (red)
  • two black keys, one red key 

20160218 2003 ducati 999 left sprocket

20160218 2003 ducati 999 spares

And that spare bodywork might be a clue to how this special superbike found its way to eBay.  While it’s a blast to update a fun bike and personalize it, unless you’re an expert rider or doing a follow the leader day ( sometimes even then ), the track is a scary place to take your creation.  Maybe the owner thought better and is looking for something that won’t be gut-wrenching when the inevitable happens…


20160218 2003 ducati 999 right front

Emotional Detachment – 2003 Ducati 999
Ducati February 16, 2016 posted by Donn

More Better – 2000 Ducati 748S

A little more oomph enticed the owners of this 2000 Ducati 748S to bore the cylinders out to 94mm and upgrade camshafts.  Along with some more usual mods, the result is a nicely spec’ed 853 cc machine.

20160215 2000 ducati 748-853 right

2000 Ducati 748S for sale on eBay

Built from 1994-2002, the 748 was the 916’s kid brother, and reviewed as somewhat friendlier for street riding.  The 748’s shorter stroke resulted in ( and required ) a slightly higher rev limit, but the chassis and overall build were very superbike.  With the grey trellis frame peeking out from red  bodywork, a quick look at the 748 passes for a 916.  Showa dampers front and rear, and forks have gold-colored nitride coating.  Dual underseat exhaust and excellent Brembo brakes courtesy of the bigger bike.

20160215 2000 ducati 748-853 front

The 748 offered here has been treated to some very special engine mods, as well as the more usual ( but pretty nice ) rims, levers, double-bubble windscreen, and mufflers.  Adding 6 mm to the cylinder bores results in an 853 cc engine, and intake and exhaust cams were traded for parts from up-rated Ducatis.  No power output is claimed, though tuning must’ve included some dyno time, it should be in the 105 hp area.  Other driveline parts have been upgraded with lightweight flywheel, slipper clutch and Supersprox listed.  Titanium mufflers from Leo Vinci and Marvic magnesium wheels were also added.  From the eBay auction:

This is an opportunity to own a unique Ducati 748S/853. It started it’s life as a 2000 748S. In 2010 with 9,792 miles on the odometer it was built out to an 853cc. The following modifications were completed in this build. 

748R inlet camshafts, pair
996 sps exhaust camshafts pair (last set in the US)
Full Big Bore kit
Aluminum flywheel
Pistal pistons 94mm 748-853 HC pair (the manufacturer of pistons for Ducati race bikes)
Bored and replated cyls
Supersprox sprocket and chain (lifetime guarantee)
Ducati front and rear Penta 2 magnesium wheels, gold.
CRG folding clutch and break levers
Ohlins adjustable rear shock
Ducati slipper clutch w/ceramic coated pressure plate 12t
Leo Vinci titanium mufflers 
All the work was performed by a Ducati factory authorized and trained mechanic, (former head mechanic at BCM Motorsports when Bruce Myers was the owner.) All service work since the Big Bore build has been performed by Clubhouse Motorsports, NH. This bike is a dream to ride and is competitive with 996’s.
20160215 2000 ducati 748-853 cockpit
With the engine done by a motorsports shop and other nice updates, this should be a special 748S.  Would’ve liked more and better pictures, but this bike as modified deserves more attention just as it is…
20160215 2000 ducati 748-853 rear
More Better – 2000 Ducati 748S
Suzuki February 15, 2016 posted by Donn

Featured Listing: 1989 Suzuki GSX-R1100

Update 6.12.2016: SOLD!

Update 2.15.2016: This seller has upgraded to a Featured Listing. Thanks for helping to support the site! Price is $7,500

Chosen by a collector and studiously preserved, this GSX-R1100 was plucked from the streets with 9,300 miles.  The K-model ( Suzuki VIN numbers use a letter code for the year ) had a new 1127cc engine and robust alloy frame.  Notoriously tricky to set up, the combination of power and handling on the 1989 was labeled “expert” by some, and just avoided by others.

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 right front

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 left rear

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 right grip

Cooling the cylinders and heads with fins and oil flow, the legendary Suzuki engine delivered 143 hp.  The torque figure of 86 ft-lbs. required only a 5-speed transmission.  The frame of aluminum extrusions welded to cast connectors was light and strong.  The Kayaba forks and Full Floater rear shock each were 3-way adjustable.  Nissin brakes were 310mm front and 240mm rear.  Not as slab-sided as some earlier models, the biposto seat fairing complements the full endurance-inspired fairing, giving the rider a place to hide from the potentially 170 mph wind.

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 windshield

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 right seat

The owner supplied a boatload of high-resolution photos, with every detail shown along with some patina, but no corrosion.  The bike has been ridden some, and the seat fairing has a broken mount underneath, but the fairing and paint condition is surprisingly good, and the cleanliness of the metals is astounding. 
Seller description:

Up for your consideration is a 1989 GSXR1100. This bike has had a very easy life considering. I feel the condition of this bike is way above average for the year and miles (9,295 miles). The originality speaks volumes as to who owned it and how it was treated. I won’t say anymore about that as I will let the pictures of the bike speak for themselves. The bike was bought by me as a collector bike and never put on the street. The tank is signed by Kevin Schwantz.  It can easily be removed if so desired.

I still have the original ad from when I purchased the bike. It has been thoroughly cleaned twice while in my care. It is detailed and would be a great addition for any collector or anyone whom just wants to ride it.  Note that the pictures with the tank bra (which I have since thrown out) and several others were taken before I ever cleaned or detailed the bike.  This is a California bike so it has all the EGR equipment still intact and no rust or degradation of metals and or fasteners. It is this bikes originality that makes  it so special…

Problem areas:

  • Small crack in the left side rear cover at the very rear corner. This is a common area that was abused due to lack of knowledge on how to remove the panel properly.  It is easily missed if not pointed out as the picture is high res and at the perfect angle to show its ugliness. I promise it is easy to miss walking arround the bike. I have watched for another NOS part to come along and have not been successful.
  • There are some very minor stone chips here and there. This is a used bike that has almost ten thousand miles so some wear is expected.
  • Steering damper; they typically last 5-7 years and fail so this is a common issue with a bike of this age
  • Does not come with a battery

That is it. Other than those items the bike is all there. It does include all manuals, keys, NOS solo seat cover, dealer brochure, binder with all articles and such from over the years, copy of previous owners titles, etc.  Note it does not come with the tank bra shown in some of the pictures – that was removed and discarded.   You are buying this bike from a enthusiast collector so I think you will be happy. I am however missing the previous owner’s maintenance documentation which I do wish it came with. Sadly most people didn’t think of these things at that time. The bike has had an oil change and tank and cabs drained while in my care.

This bike is on the rise in value and will follow the slab sided bikes that have just been white hot. It is very easy to see the trends and while most average bikes will get average prices the really good ones always bring the really good money. I was told long ago by a well renowned collector always buy the best you can afford as the best condition always is the most sought after, and always originality trumps restored. They can be restored hundreds of times and original once. This bike is not an ordinary bike and is not for most as you will see with the pricing. This bike is for the buyer that wants low mile, original bike, in great condition and will pay a premium for it.

I have listed and sold lots of bikes over the years without a single complaint. All were pleasantly surprised and all expectations were met, most even became friends after the purchase.

I will be listing a few bikes so please take a look and see if any of them tempt you! It is time to thin the herd so to speak. Good luck!


20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 overhead

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 dash

20151118 1989 suzuki gsx-r1100 left rear wheel

The wear and tear of life on the street for this big horsepower bike ended when the current owner parked it, or rather put it on the lift for polishing.  Signed by Suzuki star Kevin Schwantz, most likely a high reserve will keep it on the display stand.  Might be for the best, since it reviewed as a wrist crushing ride.  Many were bored out and converted to drag bikes or just raced on the street, and survivors in this kind of shape are few and far between.  Maybe one of the current bidders will prevail and take it back out, possibly to the fan corral at an AMA Superbike race…


Featured Listing: 1989 Suzuki GSX-R1100
Buell February 13, 2016 posted by Donn

Uncle Beastly – 2006 Buell XBRR

Relegated to the past at least until someone re-incarnates the brand, Buell Motorcycles and Erik Buell Racing built some motorcycles that required one to suspend disbelief when new models were shown.  The track-only XBRR was one, the head-scratchingly big twin road racer offered here in new condition.

20160213 2007 buell xbrr right front

2006 Buell XBRR for sale on eBay

20160213 2007 buell xbrr left

Built in a lot of 50 and never intended for the road, the XBRR had 1339 cc’s of 12.5:1 compression, in an air-cooled 45-degree twin.  With twin 62mm downdraft throttle bodies and 103mm pistons, the motor claimed over 150 hp and 100 ft-lbs. torque.  Only a 5-speed was needed with that powerband.

20160213 2007 buell xbrr left front

20160213 2007 buell xbrr dash

A lot of leading-edge ideas were displayed – fuel rode in the aluminum perimeter frame, and engine oil in the swingarm.  Ohlins provided fully adjustable dampers front and rear, and Nissin mounted their 8-piston single caliper for the zero-torsion-load front brake.  Hidden by the full carbon fairing, the exhaust and muffler were kept as close to the center of gravity as possible to help handling.  Wheels were cast and machined magnesium.

20160213 2007 buell xbrr right front brake

20160213 2007 buell xbrr right rear wheel

Coming out of Karpen, Germany from a specialty car and bike dealer, this XBRR has never been started, and wears the factory yellow paint.  A tough kind of beauty, but the XBRR shows purposeful aggression.  The seller also offers to coordinate shipping.

20160213 2007 buell xbrr right peg

20160213 2007 buell xbrr left peg

Though it  could be the basis for a supersport racing effort, this Buell should remain on display, especially since the story has been interrupted if not ended.  Buell went on to greater racing success with the 1125RR, but the XBRR was the final race bike of Buell’s 25-year association with Harley-Davidson.


20160213 2007 buell xbrr left front

Uncle Beastly – 2006 Buell XBRR
Ducati February 10, 2016 posted by Donn

Interim Build – 1990 Ducati 750 Sport

Succeeding the 750 F1, the 750 Sport changed places with the Paso which went on to 904 cc.  Though found on the bargain side of the Ducati showroom, the 750 Sport helped the brand through some negative reaction to the innovative Paso and held the door for the Supersports which followed.

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport left

1990 Ducati 750 Sport for sale on eBay

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport cockpit

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport left engine

A Weber carbureted desmodue, the 750 Sport gets 75 hp from from the air-cooled 748cc’s.  The trellis frame is substantially 750 F1 with extra room under the tank for the larger airbox.  Suspension is Marzocchi front and rear, with Brembo brakes, 280mm fronts and 270mm rear.  Full fairing is a blend of a Paso-ish square headlight nose and F1 seat fairing, but hangs together well.  16-inch wheels are another Paso legacy, but do improve handling.

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport binnacle

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport right carburetor

Looking just great for a member of the quarter-century club, this example hasn’t been hidden away with 17,500 miles.  The owner has addressed the major rideability issue of the Weber-equipped 750, by upgrading to Supersport-era Mikuni carbs.  Crucial maintenance items just completed.  From the eBay auction:

Upgrades include Mikuni flat slide carbs, 900SS rear shock and beautiful sounding and rare Conti pipes. Belts and all fluids changed at the beginning of the year as well as the fully rebuilt forks. Tires in very good shape. The bike runs and performs great although a minor carb adjustment is needed.
Comes with the original rear wheel hugger (not pictured), spare turn signal parts, binder with a manual, articles about this model, receipts, etc. and a custom made tri-color cover.

The bike is in outstanding shape except for very few and surface nicks, all pictured:

– on the underbelly of the body panels (normal usage)
– a small crack in the right fairing by the foot area 
– a surface scratch on the tank south of the fuel cap (happened during transport while moving and is currently under the custom cut tank pad) 
– a small touch up in silver done by previous owner
Wheels are flawless. 

I also have an extra full set of fairings and a silver colored (European version) NOS spare fuel tank which can be purchased separately. 

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport left front wheel

20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport left rear wheel

Obviously owned by a fan of the marque, this 750 Sport has been cared for and upgraded.  Though performance isn’t that of a newer superbike, overheating and complex valve adjustment aren’t there either.  Wear parts are a bargain, and tire availability is actually better now than it was shortly after this bike was introduced.  Classic good looks are helped by a very special factory paint scheme.  If the buyer could talk the owner down from his buy-it-now a little, it’d be just the ticket for a rider who wants to stay out of big-ticket territory and knows just how good a 750 Sport can be…


20160210 1990 ducati 750 sport left landscape

Interim Build – 1990 Ducati 750 Sport
Aprilia February 8, 2016 posted by Donn

Featured Listing – 2001 Aprilia RSW 250

Update 7.19.2016: No longer being offered. -dc

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 right shop

Built from 1991-2007 the Aprilia RS 250 is a rare sight, except on RSBFS – but an RSV or RSW – the factory race machines are exponentially more exotic.  Over its long run the model has been ridden to championships by Moto GP stars such as Max Biaggi, Valentino Rossi, Marco Melandri, and Jorge Lorenzo.  A factory test mule, the 2001 RSW 250 offered here has been treated to a lot of factory upgrades, and would make a great start to a race effort.

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 left

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 left without body

Though power isn’t claimed for the 249 cc 90-degree two-stroke twin, it should be around 90 hp  at 12,000 rpm.  Aluminum-framed but with carbon fiber bodywork ( including seat console ), swingarm and wheels, with fuel this bike should weigh less than 300 lbs.  Ohlins and Brembo equipped front and rear.  Expansion chambers are titanium.

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 right

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 right without body

Brought over from an Italian shop that had done a pristine restoration, this RSW 250 has turned only 200 miles since.  A nice collection of spares is included, including a rare set of carbon-carbon brakes.  The owner attempts list everything in the eBay auction:

  • Complete ATR carbon fibre bodywork including tank, self supporting seat unit
  • Carbon fiber swingarm that an A Kit part typically only available to factory teams
  • Carbon fiber wheels that were designed by Aprilia (and ATR) but manufactured by Ferrari (these wheels are effectively irreplaceable so the bike also has a set of magnesium Marchesinis if you actually want to ride it)
  • Brembo monobloc calipers
  • Ohlins front and rear suspension (and steering damper)
  • Full data acquisition with all sensors active (e.g., suspension travel, EGT, etc)
  • Titanium expansion chambers with DLR end cans
  • Motor has various magnesium A Kit parts (water covers, etc)
  • Motor was built about 200 miles ago with fresh pistons less than 20 miles ago and transmission is completely fresh
  • It is set up to run on VP Q16
  • 520 chain and sprocket conversion to avoid snapping chains (which was a frequent issue with the lightweight racing chain) but lightweight factory chain and sprockets includes along with a small selection of 520 sprockets
  • Carbon fiber battery (but like the wheels effectively irreplaceable so aluminum version also included)
  • Battery charger included
  • Spare titanium expansion chambers (not really spare but if you know anything about these bikes you already know that there were a litany of expansion chamber types that could be used to vary the power delivery)
  • Spare pistons and gaskets

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 right front wheel

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 left rear wheel

Whether you were an up-and-coming rider or a skilled club racer, finding a bike like this could make a career.  Appearing ready to load in the trailer and head south, this RSW 250 looks prepared for competition and has adequate spares to at least get rolling.  Details and contact information can be found on the eBay auction or at the Racing Bikes For Sale facebook page.

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 pierlorenzi body

20160207 2001 aprilia rsw250 carbon brake

The owner also has a 2002 RS 250 Cup available with significant spares available, which could also be a less exotic but exciting alternative.  See the eBay auction or Racing Bikes For Sale page.

20160207 2001 aprilia rs250 right

Featured Listing – 2001 Aprilia RSW 250
Triumph February 5, 2016 posted by Donn

Centennially Speaking – 2002 Triumph Daytona 955i CE

Celebrating the company’s hundredth year of motorcycle manufacturing, Triumph created a Centennial Edition of their sportbike, the 955 cc injected triple.

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce left

2002 Triumph Daytona 955i CE for sale on eBay

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce right

The Daytona was introduced in 1997, and the 2002 was re-designed and improved with Gareth Davies’ assistance.  The perimeter frame is aluminum, and though most ’02+ models had a double-sided swingarm, the Centennial was single-sided.  Brakes were 4-piston 320mm fronts, and 220mm rear.

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce cockpit

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce binnacle

The CE was very limited at 200 examples, but not so with power – 149 hp courtesy of forged crank, con-rods and  pistons.  Aston ( British Racing ) Green was the one-year color, with Union Jacks here and about.  The Centennial also had carbon side covers and mud guards.

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce left front wheel

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce right grip

Looking very good with just under 5,000 miles, the Daytona here has been subject to some in-depth study of the charging system, dampers and final drive.  The owner states in the eBay auction:

The 2nd gremlin is if you change sprockets certain ratios will cause unnecessary chain guide wear. I have tried various combos. Stock ratios on the 2002 CE with the single sided swingarm is 18/42. I always like adding teeth to the rear sprocket only. I have a 45,46,48 etc in the 530 pitch. And in the 520 pitch I have a 19 tooth up front and a 49 in the rear. The 19/49 520 pitch is on the bike now. I like it out of all ratios and pitch. With this set up no wear at all on the chain guide. Also crazy acceleration .

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce left rear wheel

20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce right muffler

With some interesting mods but no damage and adult color scheme, this could be a Triumph to return to stock and enjoy.  The big triple is a durable powerhouse, and the bike is not overweight at just over 400 lbs.  A good rider ( maybe after a new rear tire ) with room for a pillion, but in this case a special year for Triumph and the Daytona.


20160204 2002 triumph daytona 955i ce left front

Centennially Speaking – 2002 Triumph Daytona 955i CE