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Ducati November 10, 2018 posted by

As Intended: 2004 Ducati 749R for Sale

I'm always torn when considering bikes like the Ducati 749R: on one hand, they're rare and increasingly valuable and should be carefully preserved. On the other, there's really no point to them as roadbikes, since they're uncomfortable, high-strung, and obviously more valuable than a more common 749S that offers very similar performance with less of a headache. Meaning that they should be ridden, and hard. And although people have warmed to the looks in recent years, it's still considered a bit controversial and it's hard to argue that it's one of the best-looking Ducati superbikes...

Whatever you think of the styling, the 749R was a very special bike. It was designed to homologate the 999's little brother for Supersport racing, and rules were very tight to keep costs down for the competitors and encourage participation by as many teams as possible. This left little room for the teams to upgrade the stock bikes for competition so, in typical Ducati style, they simply upgraded the hell out of their homologation machines. The 749R is one of the trickest bikes Ducati ever produced for road use, and featured titanium engine internals, including bigger valves, lightweight magnesium components like the cam covers, and a more radically oversquare bore and stroke to increase the v-twin's appetite for revs. Horsepower was up significantly, from 108 to 121, but you pay for that in increased servicing costs if your bike doesn't just sit, collecting dust.

A slipper clutch helped keep the tire in contact with the road during aggressive downshifts, Öhlins suspension at the front and rear made the best of the excellent chassis, radial Brembo brakes were top-of-the-line, and, for the first year anyway, carbon-fiber bodywork kept weight to a minimum. Even the fuel tank was specific to the R model and had increased capacity. Interestingly, ergonomics for all of the monoposto Terblanche superbikes were adjustable, although the 749R was limited by the additional clearance required for the larger-diameter exhaust.

From the original eBay listing: 2004 Ducati 749R for Sale

This is special bike that has a great chance of becoming a collectable bike. This is bike # 219 from the first year (2004) of production and the only year that came standard with carbon fiber fairings. Bike was only made 2004-2006.

I am the original owner of this bike.  It is currently set up for track days*, with fiberglass body work, head light/tail light removed etc. Comes with all the original carbon body work, foot pegs, all original manuals, master cylinder, stock clutch cover etc., and a spare tail section/ carbon fiber exhaust cover (perfect).

Front forks upgraded by Peterson Pro Suspension (PPS), clutch upgraded to STM race clutch, 520 chain conversion, Dyno- power commander mapped, upgradeded Bremo mastercylinder, cycle-cat rear sets, Termingnoni upgraded -lighter exhaust, Carbon fiber hugger & exhaust guard, and Speedy Moto clutch cover, internal frame slider.  GP shift configuration. Also Internal frame slider.

Comes with spare Barnett clutch plates, spare front brake rotor, set of tire warmers, rear stand and the Bike-chuck the Motorcycle is in,in the photo, battery tender and motorcycle cover, tie downs and handle-bar canyon dancer for shipping (see below on terms).

Also will comes with a set of Doug Chandler's Carbon Fiber race body work.  (He raced a 749R (not this one) for Milwaukee Ducati in the AMA - google and it will come right up.)

Note in the main photo- the fairings are the 2004 carbon originals, but the nose is the fiberglass race - so this fit isn't perfect. when its all the fiberglass or all the carbon -  everything fits nicely.  (The original carbon nose needs to have some old tape removed).

* bike was never raced. I was a "street group" track day guy - so never pushed too hard. Just middle age weekend warrior.

A special bike for a collector or vintage track day enthusiast.

As the seller points out, the 2004 model does come with carbon fairings, and the bike has otherwise been purposefully upgraded to function better in the environment for which it was really intended: the race track. That it's been used on track really shouldn't put people off much, since the seller admits he's not pushed the bike too hard, and it was built to withstand the rigors of racing. So this isn't a pristine example for your climate-controlled garage/museum, it's a clean one that's been upgraded to actually perform better, losing originality and gaining function. The 749R is slightly less valuable than the 999R, but it's no less trick, making it the one to buy if you want to sample Ducati's homologation bikes or are looking for one you can ride without the worry of ruining an immensely collectible bike. For now, anyway...

-tad


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Suzuki November 9, 2018 posted by

Feeling Lucky? 1998 Suzuki RGV 250 SP VJ23 Lucky Strike Edition

Hmmmm. A grey-market two stroke. I doubt anyone on this site will complain, as these illicit smokers have been in our DNA and part of our regularly scheduled programming since the beginning. And if you are going to collect something deliciously rare, why not opt for colors and livery that are slightly less common? Thus, today's smoking example is just that: a tasty Suzuki RGV 250 SP in the very striking Lucky Strike edition colors.

1998 Suzuki RGV 250 SP VJ23 Lucky Strike Edition on eBay

The Suzuki RGV 250 should need no introduction. But just in case you've just jumped over from more current four stroke machinery, let's whisk you back to a time when the BackStreet Boys and NSYNC were topping charts. What the world needed was something that sounded good, and the two-stroke soundtrack delivered. Based around a 90 degree v-twin, the second generation RGV represented the ideal mix of narrow packaging, perfect primary balance, and a wide-ish powerband. It was so good it was licensed by Aprilia for their excellent RS250 series bikes. This was a major leap forward from the archaic parallel twin formerly known as the Gamma, but there was more to come. Enter the VJ23 spec Gamma, and the world once again changed. 90 degrees gave way to a 70 degree vee configuration (better packaging and weight distribution), and unrestricted power was up to an estimated 70 HP. These were primarily Japanese home market bikes, so unrestricted expect to see about 40 HP on the dyno.

The RGV250 SP is technically a race replica, however it is in many ways race ready. A performer in the ultra competitive 250 home market class, the VJ23 has everything you might expect (and need) for the racetrack. Aluminum frame? Table stakes. Cool banana swing arm to maximize pipe and cornering clearance? Child's play. Dry clutch for weight and internal drag reduction? I can hear the rattle from here. Adjustable suspension is another given, as is the solo saddle. Two-up racing is for side hackers only. Outside of the power and speed restrictions and the necessary road gear (lights, horn, etc) there is very little keeping this bike from being a track day hellion. And given that it is the last variant of the 250 Gamma lineup - as well as wearing the ultra rare LS livery, this example wins on drool factor as well.

From the seller:
Suzuki RGV250 SP VJ23 Lucky Strike
RGV 250
10,581 Kilometers (approx. 6500 miles)
Clean title
Plated and titled for street use in Washington State, but was originally titled in California, and is eligible for re-registration and street use in CA. Tabs will need to be updated for the street.
Excellent condition
Full custom fabricated exhaust, titanium slash-cut rear sets-- everything else completely stock.
Good tires, fluids, new battery
Runs perfectly, lots of power!
Cosmetics are excellent, with a few minor wear and tear scratches-- she has been ridden, loved, and never raced.
Unrestricted Suzuki 2 stroke motor.
Engine top end was rebuilt at approximately 2500 KM 😉

Here is the tricky thing about grey-market bikes in the USA: It's way cool to be different, but it's not always easy. Vehicles that were not officially imported into the US by the manufacturer are not guaranteed to be welcome at your local DMV. California is especially draconian about rules, unless you "know some guy." The seller states that this bike was a previous Californian, and that would smooth the way back into the state but I am not familiar enough with vehicle registration laws in order to concur. If you are interested - and you should be, given that this is a freaking Lucky Strike VJ23 - additional research would be recommended. The seller also does not have much feedback on eBay which can be concerning, but giving the benefit of the doubt many folks have one of something to sell and may not be a habitual vendor on an online swap meet platform such as the 'Bay. As always, RSBFS recommends you do your homework as a buyer. We can highlight the amazing bikes in the ether of the interwebs, but buying one is still caveat emptor.

Most good looking, late model two strokes do not stick around for long. They are in high demand and short supply. This particular example looks to be very clean. There are few mods (exhaust and rear sets - and possibly a tail chop) and the seller claims it is de-restricted with a top end refresh only some 1500 miles ago. The bike is currently sitting with approximately 6,500 miles on the all metric clocks. There has been some interest by bidders, with pricing at the time of this writing up to $7,100 with reserve still in place. Well-heeled collectors can pull the "buy it now" trigger for a mere $12,750. If the reserve lifts at the double digit threshold this bike could be considered well bought. It is late in the riding season and interest is starting to wane, but good bikes are out there for those on the lookout. This 1998 Suzuki RGV250 SP Gamma in wonderful Lucky Strike red/white might be just the thing to keep you warm as the days turn chilly. Check it out here, and good luck!!

MI


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Ducati November 9, 2018 posted by

Expensive Exclusivity: 2006 Ducati Paul Smart 1000LE

Ducati paid Paul Smart less than a grand to ride their newly-minted 750SS to victory in the 1972 Imola 200, which is insane value for money when you consider that that one race would solidify Smart's reputation as a racer and give Ducati's new Desmos the street cred they needed to thrive. The brand and Smart parted company shortly thereafter, finally reuniting 34 years later for a run of 1,000 special-edition bikes.

2006 Ducati Paul Smart 1000LE for sale on eBay

Thus, the 2006 Ducati Paul Smart 1000LE. The bikes were, like the MH900e before them, a very special chassis hung around Ducati's vaunted 900cc air-cooled twin. The bikes wore gorgeous silver bodywork over an aquamarine trellis frame -- not Ducati's standard fare, but part of what made Smart's 1972 mount stand out. This specimen has clocked 10,000 miles, and shows some signs of use and handling. It is still in excellent shape, but it is not a spotless museum-condition bike. It factory-option Termignoni pipes and the accompanying ECU upgrade, and has a small army of aftermarket parts. All the original pieces come with the bike.

From the eBay listing:

Up for sale is a 2006 Ducati Paul Smart 1000LE. This motorcycle is extremely rare (2000 worldwide) and is a true work of art.

This motorcycle has been meticulously maintained and taken care of. The bike is hand cleaned after every ride without the use of water which is done to prevent any rusting and damage to electrical components.

The major "Desmo service" was done at 7411 miles and the oil has been changed 3 times since then (every one thousand miles). Only high quality oil is used, which is Motul 300V 15W50.

The Ohlins front forks were serviced last year and had the updated fork seals installed.

As for aftermarket parts, the motorcycle has a fender eliminator/tail tidy kit by Motobox USA, speedy moto frame sliders, open clutch cover, aftermarket pressure plate, springs, spring retaining caps, supersprox front and rear sprockets and new chain.

The motorcycle had the factory option slip on exhaust with ecu.

With the purchase of this motorcycle, I will include the original parts I removed when adding the aftermarket parts.

On a motorcycle that has over 10 thousand miles, there are some paint chips and normal wear as expected.

The only major blemish is on the exhaust which was due to a tool drawer opening on its own and hitting the exhaust.

Having that said, the motorcycle has never been dropped or been in an accident.

Other than that, this motorcycle is in great condition and is a true pleasure to ride. The bike has always been garaged and covered with a Ducati performance dust cover.

If you have any questions, please send me a message and I will be happy to answer them.

This auction has NO RESERVE!

Happy bidding!

At $22,000, this PS1000LE is certainly pushing the upper echelon of what nice examples are going for. With their scarcity, good looks and model-specific pieces, this could be a harbinger of the direction these machines are going.


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Ducati November 8, 2018 posted by

Cherry pie: Zero-mile 2002 Ducati MH900e

Bologna showed off the bike that would become the 2002 Ducati MH900e at the 1998 Intermot show, on the 20th anniversary of Mike Hailwood's comeback win at the 1978 Isle of Man TT. In true Italian fashion, it took another two years before the bike was ready for orders, which opened online at 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2000. Sales were directly through Ducati at $15,000. The first model year's worth sold out in 30 minutes.

2002 Ducati MH900e for sale on eBay

The production run carried on through the 2002 model year, with 2,000 bikes eventually making their way to Ducatisti. What they got was a hand-built chassis, including a trellis frame and single-sided trellis swingarm, hung around a 900cc air-cooled twin that pumped out around 75 horsepower. The engine was fairly standard fare, but the rest of the bike absolutely was not.

This one has been kept in a museum, and has never had gas put in it or a battery hooked up. It has been left as it was after it was uncrated and bolted together. It is a late-production example, number 1,880 out of the 2,000-bike total.

From the eBay listing:

You are purchasing a

2002 DUCATI MH900E MIKE HAILWOOD #1880 OF 2000 MV.

EXCELLENT CONDITION. HAS 0 MILES. THIS IS #1,880 OF 2,000 EVER MADE. THIS MOTORCYCLE HAS NEVER BEEN USED, BATTERY HAS NEVER BEEN SERVICED, FUEL TANK HAS NEVER BEEN FILLED. IT HAS BEEN DISPLAYED IN A LOCAL MUSEUM ALL THIS TIME. FROM THE M. VANN COLLECTION. HAS SOME VERY VERY MINOR SCRATCHES AND BLEMISHES CANT BE SEEN IN THE PHOTOS. COLLECTORS BIKE, BUY AS IS.

OTHER BIKES FROM M. VANN COLLECTION AVAILABLE CALL FOR DETAILS.

CLEAN TITLE. VIN# ZDM1LA4N72B001603

WE CAN HELP YOU ARRANGE FREIGHT TO ANY WHERE IN THE WORLD. (MUST ADHERE TO AND COMPLY WITH EBAY RULES)

WE HAVE HUNDREDS OF SHIPPING CONTACTS, SHIPPING CRATES AND PACKAGING MATERIALS TO PROPERLY PACK YOUR MOTORCYCLE FOR SAFE DELIVERY

BIKE IS BEING SOLD WITH RESPONSIBILITY FOR CUSTOMER TO PICK-UP. BUT FOR EXTRA CHARGE WE CAN HELP YOU SHIP IT ANYWHERE.

WE DO HAVE CRATES IN STOCK, CALL US TO GET A QUOTE. WE SHIP ALL OVER THE WORLD.

BUY AS IS.

The asking price is as astonishing as the condition of the bike, and the seller clearly expects that its next steward will keep it in as-built, unridden condition. There is a solid argument for that, as you can pick up a very nice MH900e for less than half this ask if you are looking to ride and display.


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Featured Listing November 7, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: 1999 Laverda 750S Formula for Sale

Sort of an homologation special for a company that wasn't planning to actually go racing, the Laverda 750S Formula used premium components to upgrade the company's existing fully-faired sportbike. After falling on hard times in the 1980s, Laverda was resurrected in the 1990s, with production centered in the town of Zanè, so you'll sometimes see these referred to as "Zane-era Laverdas" to differentiate them from the 1970s classics. The revitalized company managed to make very nice sports motorcycles with limited resources, and the Formula took their  750S and added some of the very best components available at the time to create something they hoped would give them the kind of reputation and attention Ducati enjoyed with their Tamburini-designed superbikes.

Laverdas of the period used either a steel trellis or an aluminum beam frame that apparently shared the same geometry, which was a very good thing. The Nico Bakker-designed beam frame, polished as seen here on the Formula, gave the 750S an excellent foundation, and Paioli suspension kit at both ends just sweetened the deal: every period review I've seen raved about the bike's handling. Unfortunately, they also noted the bike's performance deficit, compared to the Ducati 748.

These days, parallel twins can be made to be very smooth and refined with balance shafts and other trickery, but at the time, the only real reason Laverda chose that configuration was practicality: they already had one. Dating back to the 1970s Alpino, the existing air-cooled 500cc unit had its carburetors replaced with Weber-Marelli fuel injection for more modern performance, and was enlarged to 668cc, then again to 747cc. Along the way, it gained liquid cooling, although you can still see the cooling fins once the fairings are off.

Claimed peak power was on par with the competing Ducati 748, but the reality was that, although handling was possibly even superior to the Ducati, the engine was not. It was peaky, a bit thrashy, and it loved to rev, although you really had to work the six-speed gearbox to keep up with a 748. That shouldn't bother prospective buyers today: either bike would get murdered by a modern 600. And while the 748 is a design classic, it's almost too familiar, a cliché. The Formula, on the other hand, is a very exclusive machine, with around 600 examples built. It's also more comfortable, if you care about that, and while the Formula is not as pretty as the 748, it is very striking in these black-and-orange colors.

From the original eBay listing: 1999 Laverda 750S Formula for Sale

1999 Laverda 750 Formula S. 750CC  (6790 ORIGINAL MILES)  $12,500

Contact the seller here: sennaducati79@gmail.com

This is a 2 owner bike, part of a very rare large collection now being offered for the first time via the web. Current owner is an avid collector of pure, rare Automotive and motorcycles. This concourse conditioned bike has all the correct lightweight carbon parts and pieces. Never been on a track, abused or laid down. In a private heated collection, never seen rain. This investment will only increase over time and you will be very hard pressed to ever see another one, clearly not like this with these miles.

Laverda’s Formula S is essentially a factory built special edition of the basic Formula, with extensive engine tuning and even more special chassis componentry. The original Formula was a 650, built in 1996, with the Formula 750 following a year later in 1997.

The engine work was more extensive than most factory specials, and took the Formula almost to a race tune straight from the showroom. Updated cams, revised fuel injection settings and carbon fiber Termignoni mufflers all boost top end power to an impressive claimed figure of (92BHP)- almost as much as the Ducati 748. The chassis also compares to the Ducati being considerably lighter and with suspension and braking components every bit as impressive.

Fully adjustable Paioli Upside Down forks and monoshock. Fully floating Brembo racing brakes and lightweight Marchesini wheels all play their part in giving the Formula impeccable manners for the street or track. The polished aluminum beam frame looks much more impressive than the Ducati’s thin steel tube!! A single seat race style fairing incorporates stylish cooling louvers and twin endurance style headlights, and is finished in Laverda Orange, the firm's racing colors.

This is your chance to stand out and be different with a stunning example of Italian heritage.

I've lusted after these for a while now, and this appears to be a very clean, low-mileage example that should appeal to collectors with a taste for the exotic. The mirrors appear to have been removed and the standard exhausts were carbon fiber, but these Termignoni parts are a desirable extra. Certainly, the name "Laverda" has a great deal of cachet with collectors and this bike represents a missed opportunity for the brand: it's a good, if flawed bike, and really did offer an interesting alternative to the Ducati. Parts for Zane-era Laverdas can be tricky to source, depending on what you need, but I expect this one will end up leading a pampered life in a collection somewhere and won't rack up enough miles to matter very much.

Contact the seller here: sennaducati79@gmail.com

-tad

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