Tagged: bevel drive

Affordable Bevel: 1978 Ducati 900GTS for Sale

1978 Ducati 900 GTS R Front

After the unpopular, Giugiaro-designed 860GT, Ducati’s more practical sibling to the Super Sport got a makeover into the more conservative 900GTS. The engine was largely the same, but looks were changed from the radical, forward-thinking lines to something less threatening to hidebound Ducati enthusiasts. It was still considered a bit of a let-down in terms of looks but, like all Ducatis of the era, prices are steadily rising. It’s a shame the striking 860 never caught on, but the 900 is still a very classic, handsome motorcycle, and the beating heart of the bike is still Ducati’s classic, bevel-drive L-twin.

1978 Ducati 900 GTS L Side

Although Ducati’s entire range of modern motorcycles feature their signature “desmodromic” actuation system that uses cams to both open and close the valves, only top-of-the-line Super Sport models used it prior to the Pantah engine. So although the GTS does have a set of tower-shafts and bevel-gears to drive the overhead cams, it makes do with a set of ordinary valve springs to close the valves. Impact on performance is negligible and the bike still put out 65hp and plenty of midrange torque.

1978 Ducati 900 GTS Clocks

From the original eBay listing: 1978 Ducati 900GTS for Sale

Today we are proud to offer this beautiful vehicle for your consideration. This is a terrific addition to any enthusiast’s collection. This Ducati is completely original and has been locally owned for the past 38 years in heated garages. Every electrical component such as headlights brake light, Turn signals and horn perform.  New tires along with new rims and wire wheels. Fenders and tank are original and without any dents. Electric start is immediate. This bike with the Conti exhausts sounds identical to the SS. It has amazing torque. Included are the following 2 bar end mirrors (new), 2 new chrome valve guides (current ones on bike are rusty), manual, tool kit with under seat compartment. A few service records are included. This vehicle is running properly. It performs wonderfully, whether you’re in-town or on the open highway, and exhibits excellent road manners at all speeds. This is a great previously owned vehicle. Overall the vehicle is very straight. The condition of the paint and body, is in overall good shape, see photos. This is a rare opportunity to own a legendary 900cc Ducati!

1978 Ducati 900 GTS Engine

Originality is very important to many collectors. As they say, “It’s only new once!” And although this Ducati is a little rough around the edges, it has tons of character and appears to have been well-maintained, even though the cosmetic aspects have suffered a bit from the ravages of time. The missing side-panels might be difficult to replace, although pattern parts should be available if you spend some time browsing the interwebs. The fact that all the basics work is key, considering that bidding is only up to $8,350.00 with the reserve met. Bidding is active, but if the price stays reasonable, this could prove to be an excellent candidate for a “rolling restoration,” a bike that you can either ride as-is or work on a bit at a time to make it look brand new.

-tad

1978 Ducati 900 GTS R Side

Bevel-Drive with an NCR-Prepped Engine: 1978 Ducati 900SS for Sale

1978 Ducati 900SS R Front

Looking like it’s sitting in God’s living room, this very nice bevel-drive Ducati 900SS apparently has an NCR-prepped engine, although the seller doesn’t detail exactly what that entails. Which would help, as that could mean just about anything, from a simple rebuild or blueprint, up to and including a barely-streetable race engine.

1978 Ducati 900SS R Engine

Introduced in 1975 and powered by an 864cc version of Ducati’s iconic bevel-drive engine, the bike was really their first attempt at a global-market bike: along with a quieter set of stock mufflers, the shift mechanism was significantly redesigned to make relocation to the left side of the bike less of a cobbled-together affair and improve the action for riders in the US market. By now, many 900SS bikes have had the stock pipes swapped out for a set of appropriately-loud Contis, as seen here.

1978 Ducati 900SS R Rear

Obviously a bit less desirable than the original “round-case” bevels that were introduced in 1974, the “square case” 900SS shared much of its DNA with the far more practical Darmah. But the sex appeal of that half-fairing and clip-on bars, along with the undeniable links to racing mean that these will always be the most desirable Ducatis of the period, barring actual race bikes.

1978 Ducati 900SS L Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1978 Ducati 900SS for Sale

Original Ducati 900SS engine prepared by NCR with NCR specification, two owners up to now, all history known. Excellent condition, runs perfectly.
NOS Tank

  • Original Veglia Borletti racing rev counter
  • 40mm Dell’Orto carbs
  • Original Conti exhaust (not rechromed)
  • Marzocchi shock absorbers
  • CEV 177 headlight
  • Greek documentSeller great Ducati collector

1978 Ducati 900SS Tach

They say that “presentation is everything.” And it never ceases to amaze me to see auctions for high-end motorcycles where the seller hasn’t even bothered to haul their $30,000 motorcycles out of the back of the shed into the light to take a few quality pictures. So it’s always nice when someone makes the effort to really show off their pride and joy, especially when it’s a beautiful, black-and-gold Ducati 900SS. This one obviously needs a quick trip down a windy back road to clean off those rusty brake discs, and it’s not in perfect cosmetic condition, with some minor surface corrosion and pitting and general wear. But it looks well cared-for and the listing suggests that it’s ready to run, a very important consideration when you look at what a mechanical restoration would cost for a bike that’s been sitting.

Also: genuine Veglia white-faced racing tachometer!

-tad

1978 Ducati 900SS L Front

The Real Thing? 1974 Ducati 750 Sport for Sale

1974 Ducati 750 Sport R Front

One of the best-looking bikes of this or any other period, the Ducati 750 Sport is one of those machines that looks fast, even standing still, the kind of bike that people will stop and stare at when they see one parked on the street, even if the next words out of their mouth are, “Ducati… Is that made by Harley?

1974 Ducati 750 Sport Low R Front

Very spare and very lean, the 750 Sport was the marginally faster, significantly less comfortable version of the 750GT. The tank was longer, and narrower for a sleeker profile, with a classic “bum-stop” seat along with racy clip-ons and rearsets.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport R Engine

It included larger carburetors and high-performance engine internals you’d expect, although it did not use Desmodromic valves, something that was found only on the Super Sport models until the introduction of the Pantah engine in 1980. But from a visual standpoint, the Sport still has that classic, “round-case” bevel-drive style, with the pronounced tower-shaft housings and bevel-gear castings in the heads.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport Front Brakes

This example also features a dual-disc brake front end, which is a nice, period-appropriate upgrade to the much more common single unit. In typical Ducati form, “whatever’s on the shelf” seemed to apply to these bikes, with Lockheed, Scarab, and Brembo calipers being used depending on the bike, day of the week, and mood of the guy at the factory putting it together.

From the original eBay listing: 1974 Ducati 750 Sport for Sale

This bike was bought by it current owner in 1975 with 1,300 miles on it.
The bike has some minor upgrades to its electricals and mechanicals.
It also includes a GT seat, tank and bar adapter kit as pictured.
Wow! Nice Bike!

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Front2

Make no mistake, this looks like it is a very “Nice Bike.” But the short and to-the-point description does leave some unanswered questions. “10,000” miles are indicated in the listing, but the odometer clearly shows 30,000. And the bike has obviously received more than “minor upgrades” as the paint is different, the exhaust is different, the top triple and bars are different. So exactly what is the story with this bike? What kind of motorcycle do we have here? Is it really a Sport, or a dressed up GT?

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Engine

I’m guessing that this was originally a 750 Sport that the owner modified with higher controls and a more comfortable seat to make the bike more practical, along with a few other “aesthetic” changes like the blacked-out Contis. Then the bike was more recently put back into its original configuration, perhaps with an eye towards selling it.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport Dash

The odometer readings do seem to add up, assuming the seller hasn’t ridden the bike much since the restoration, and the photos in the original listing clearly display a VIN number and stampings on the engine cases. Any of our expert readers care to chime in on this one? It’s obviously in beautiful shape, but is it one to ride, or one to collect?

-tad

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Rear

Sturm und Drang: 1978 Ducati 900SS Bevel Racer in Germany

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer L Front

From the land of Vorsprung durch Technik comes a very low-technik Italian bike built for going very fast. Clearly based around a square-case, bevel-drive 900SS, this Ducati race bike currently resides in Germany but, since you’re never going to register it for road use, that shouldn’t worry anyone here in the US tempted to splash out the cash necessary to put this into their garage or foyer.

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer L Side

The 900 Super Sport was introduced in 1975 to follow up their 750SS and is far more common than that very rare motorcycle. It is easily identifiable by its revised square case engine that was restyled to work better with Giorgetto Giugiaro’s Ducati designs. While his GT bikes were certainly controversial in terms of style, the more angular look of the engine works just fine with the more traditional half-fairing on the SS bikes.

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer L Side Naked

Engine internals were similar to the 750 with the usual evolutionary changes and a displacement increase to 864cc, along with a change to a left-side gearshift designed for the important US market. Later 900’s featured cast wheels and while those are obviously more advanced, these earlier spoked wheels look the business and suit the bike far better, I think.

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer Cockpit

Complete with open bellmouths on the carburetors and a classy Gear Gazer for the rear cylinder, this isn’t the most original Ducati I’ve seen, but it’s one of the coolest.

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer R Engine Detail

From the original eBay listing: 1978 Ducati 900SS Race Bike for Sale

You are looking for a Ducati racer. We have a special one:

Frame: Molybdenum
Pistons: 92 Pistonrace,
Carillo connecting rods,
dry clutch,
Valves: Mimonic,
Cucusan electronic ignition,
Dellorto race 41,
engine was prepared by Lauro Micozzi
Titanium muffler,
aluminium wheels,
racing shock absorbers

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer L Side Engine Detail

Bidding is only up to $12,000 with one day left on the auction. It’s a little rough around the edges, but this thing looks brutally fast and appears to be very well-prepared if your tastes run to the effective rather than the pretty. While it would obviously make a very impressive livingroom decoration, I get the feeling that this one would be much more at home hammering around a racetrack

Personally, I’d take this 900SS over a meticulously restored or pristine original example any day of the week and twice on Sunday, since everyone knows that Sunday is a Day of Riding.

-tad

1978 Ducati 900SS Racer R Side

Real-World Italian: 1981 Ducati Darmah SD900 for Sale

1981 Ducati Darmah L Side

The Ducati Darmah was just about the end of the line for Ducati’s bevel-drive v-twin motorcycles, aside from a handful of Hailwood Replicas and S2 models, before the move from gears and tower-shafts to simple, rubber belts. The change made plenty of economic sense but, while the Pantah engine is considered one of the most charismatic engines of all time, it certainly isn’t as good-looking as that earlier Ducati powerplant.

1981 Ducati Darmah Tank

The Darmah was introduced in 1977 to replace the unloved 860GT and has a definite 70’s Superbike vibe about it, with the upswept tail and wide bars looking much more like the Japanese competition than the angular, futuristic 860. But unlike those bikes that offered comfort and straight-line speed, the Darmah could hustle through the turns on its Marzocchi suspension and pull up short with its Brembo brakes.

1981 Ducati Darmah Clocks

And it wasn’t just about style: the Darmah included evolutionary updates to the basic platform to improve function that included an electric start and a redesigned shift lever that did away with the cobbled-together crossover previously used to convert the bike to left-side shift. Combined with the comfortable ergonomics and torquey v-twin, those changes made for a very appealing package for folks who want to ride, rather than just admire their motorcycles.

1981 Ducati Darmah R Side Engine

This particular example isn’t completely perfect, but appears to be in very good, very original condition. The Darmah featured an improved build-quality compared to earlier Ducatis, so you should get more “patina” and less “corrosion…”

From the original eBay listing: 1981 Ducati Darmah SD900 for Sale

Very nice Darmah here. I also have the Silentiums that it came with, the pipes on it are Stainless. Always maintained to a high standard. Valves set, new chain and sprockets, clutch plates, steering head bearings, tires and cables. Calipers rebuilt and stainless front brake lines added. 1981 models are actually rare in the US and you get some nice features for this year: FPS wheels, stronger transmission, upgraded clutch and the motor is exactly the same as the 900SS version. That means you get the SS rods (beamed) and the wide stud heads with larger ports. Earlier versions did not have these features, using 860 rods and small port heads with narrow stud spacing.  

Everything works and the bike is the smoothest Ducati I have ever ridden with a perfect riding position. Seat has been recovered with new padding and it is comfortable. Bike also has the excellent Marzocchi shocks these came with and they are smooth and leak free. Same with the forks. Paint is perfect and the tank is sealed with Caswells. Factory seal is in place on the cases. No leaks, no crashes, never dropped. Shift lever has been shortened to fit a size 12 foot – or smaller. Backs of the mirrors show wear and one of the headlight ears has a spot in the chrome that is flaking – shown in the pictures.

You can buy a cheap one and spend more than this bike costs to get it this good. This is not my first Bevel and I have owned multiple versions since 1980. Nobody has ‘learned’ to work on a bike that owned this. I am an old man and have taken very good care of the bike, never planning to sell it. It is part of a collection that I planned to keep forever. A current massive construction project is forcing the issue. I have an open title for it and can give a bill of sale also. Buyer is responsible for shipping. If you want one of these, buy this one.

1981 Ducati Darmah Tail

The Darmah used to be the only affordable way into classic bevel-drive Ducati ownership, and I guess it still is. But, with a Buy It Now price of $13,500 it’s just that “affordable” means something a little bit different than it used to… While the Darmah may not have the sexy, race-replica lines of the Super Sport bikes, it does offer something those bikes don’t: comfort and practicality. And unless you plan to just show your Ducati off in the living room, the Darmah is better at doing just about everything a motorcycle is supposed to do…

-tad

1981 Ducati Darmah R Side

Little Brother: 1975 Ducati 750 Super Sport for Sale

1975 Ducati 750SS R Side Front

This beautiful 1975 Ducati 750 Super Sport came as a bit of a surprise to me. I was under the impression that all SS Ducatis were powered by the new 864cc engine from 1975 on, and that the 750 was basically discontinued, but that’s clearly not the case. And it’s obviously not simply a ’74 that’d been sitting around, since the square-case motor was introduced in 1975.

1975 Ducati 750SS L Side

Turns out I was half-right: it appears that all Super Sports were based around the new 900 motor, with the 750 using a sleeved-down version to simplify manufacturing. Other than that, the two bikes were virtually identical in every way, including price. Obviously, most people opted for the 900 version, and sales of the 750 were basically nonexistent, except for certain markets like Australia and Japan.

1975 Ducati 750SS Clocks

The seller is obviously knowledgeable and has owned the bike for a while, so I’ll let him fill you in. From the original eBaly listing: 1975 Ducati 750 Super Sport for Sale

Excellent example of a rare classic collectable 750 Supersport, one of only 250 made.

Basically I’m the third owner of this bike, I have had it over 12 years now. The history being original owner sold the rolling chassis to a racer friend and the motor to another. I  inadvertently bought the race bike as a roundcase found the history and then chased to purchase the original motor. The original owner was a ’75 SS buff had no less than four 900’s and this lone 750 in his fleet. Most people preferred the 900’s over the little brother 750’s hence his reason for selling and parting the bike.

Nowadays this is not the case people are now realizing just how sweet the 750 motor actually is and some prefer the 750 over the 900. Having been in the luxurious position of having one of each you certainly can see and feel the difference. The 750 seems elegant and a smoother bike to ride and there is not much difference in the top end to that of the 900, the 900 just has more torque

The first squarecase 750SS was identified as engine number 075412 this is 075417 very early indeed. The frame number is DM750SS 075436 (the paintwork hides the numbers slightly but it is a genuine frame) It has the correct borrani rims and also has a pair of the very early 40mm dellortos’ without the choke castings. (Same as the greenframes and early 900SS’) most of the early numbered bikes had both, more often than not, probably due to limited production numbers, most ’75 model SS’  only had one – either the front or the rear. They are mounted on the standard steel manifolds particular to this model.

There were only 250 ’75 750’s produced by the factory making them very rare – fewer numbers of these were made to that of the greenframe ’74 models. Essentially the ’75 were made for racing there are specific stories relating to the building of these machines for production races. ’76 onwards they changed significantly, left foot gear change pattern, frame, tank, dash, carbies and manifolds, seat even was different and  were built for general street purpose. More importantly after the ’75 model SS’s the motor’s were not scrutineered by the factory, they dropped the polished rockers and other finer details and attention to detail.

The bike has been meticulously put back together, utilising all factory parts and it runs as good as it looks. The bore is original 80.0mm and the big end is new, it was replaced when the bike was restored. The speedo was re-set when the motor was rebuilt. Actually true mileage is uncertain, irrelevant now as when the bike was rebuilt is was put back together using all of the correct factory parts. It needed nothing other than a set of rings and the big end was changed as a mere precaution whilst the engine was apart.

1975 Ducati 750SS R Side Engine

The bike is located in Australia and the starting bid is $40,000 with no takers yet but plenty of time left on the auction. I’m assuming that eBay is doing the conversion into USD for us, but that’s still a big chunk of change. And while a round-case might be just that bit more desirable and a 900 just that bit more butch, this one’s beautiful condition might make it worth a look for collectors, especially those looking for something with just that little bit of extra rarity.

-tad

1975 Ducati 750SS R Side

Original Owner SuperSport: 1979 Ducati 900SS for Sale

1979 Ducati 900SS R Side Front

I usually try to mix things up here, and we did just feature a very nice early roundcase Ducati this week, but this late square-case SuperSport makes a nice bookend to that earlier machine. While you might expect the bigger-engined 900 SuperSport to be the more desirable bike compared to the earlier 750SS or Sport, the reverse is actually true: with just 401 produced, the earlier 750SS is far more collectible than its bigger descendant. But that just means these are that much more accessible for folks who want to experience a classic bevel-drive Ducati.

“Accessible” of course being a relative term…

1979 Ducati 900SS L Side Front

Although these epitomize Italian sportbikes of the period, the truth is that, but the late 1970’s, Ducati’s v-twin was getting pretty long in the tooth. It handled better than the newest crop of Japanese superbikes, but they were less refined, less reliable, and very expensive to produce, with the complex and Swiss watch-like tower-shaft and bevel-drive gear arrangement requiring very precise set up. In fact, the Pantah that followed was mainly intended to reduce production costs, not improve performance: those rubber belts ran quieter and made building those motors much faster and easier, even though they needed more regular replacement. Thanks for that, Ducati.

1979 Ducati 900SS L Side Engine2

The 900SS was introduced in 1975 and used the updated 864cc twin that used the restyled, more angular-looking cases that led to the “square case” nickname for these later bevel-drive engines. It also used a simplified gearshift intended from the outset to work with a left-side shift: earlier bikes with a left-side shifter were basically converted from the original right-side mechanism using a convoluted linkage that was far from precise. Cast-aluminum wheels came in 1979 and added more modern performance, although some today might bemoan the loss of the classic wire spoked items…

1979 Ducati 900SS L Side Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1979 Ducati 900SS for Sale

Very rare bevel-head Ducati, all original with few modifications. Conti exhaust, Marzocchi shocks, Del’lorto 40 mm pumper carbs, and a Dr. Desmo Bevel-gear window. 14,000 original-owner miles, has Campagnolo cast alloy wheels, a rare original option, and perforated brake disks. Complete professional no-cost-barred frame-up restoration done ca 2000-2001 by MPH Motorsports (Houston), stripped to frame, powder-coated, engine sent to Perth, Australia for the performance Vee Two treatment (converted for unleaded fuel, hardened seats, porting, http://veetwo.net/ ). Very professional result and true to the original. Runs strong and handles as if on rails. The rarest collectable MC known, recognized in the Guggenheim “Art of the Motorcycle”. Perfect condition, runs great. Always garaged, maintained by Erico MS in Denver (who will crate and ship the motorcycle), did I mention I am the original owner already?

1979 Ducati 900SS Gear Gazer

It’s nice that the seller took the time to wash the bike before taking pictures, but I do wish it’d been dried off first… And I do wish that a few more unblurry pics had been included.

Bidding is up just north of $16,000 with the Reserve Not Met. There’s not much to say about this bike: it’s a blue-chip classic in nearly perfect condition, with a fairly recent full restoration by a professional shop, with an engine built by one of the best Ducati speed shops in the business. The only questions are: “Do you like the black/gold paint, or would you prefer blue/silver?” And maybe, “Would you prefer your classic Ducati with spoked wheels?”

-tad

1979 Ducati 900SS R Side

Low-Mileage Bevel: 1974 Ducati 750 Sport for Sale

1974 Ducati 750 Sport R Side

Ducati’s 750 Sport is one of the most iconinc motorcycles of any era, an instantly-recognizable bike that looked as fast as it was. The earlier 750GT was probably a better, far more practical motorcycle. But the Sport looked like sex on wheels, and made full use of the performance available from the very capbable package.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Front

The Sport was built up from the standard 750GT and featured a lighter crankshaft, higher-compression pistons, and bigger carbs. One thing it did not have was Ducati’s now ubiquitous desmodromic heads. Only the SuperSport models got that little technological nugget, although the Sport did use the very accurate tower shaft and bevel drive system to operate the overhead cams.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport Clocks

The Sport obviously looked different as well: the tank was longer and narrower, and there were no passenger accommodations. And while the 750GT was a much more practical motorcycle in real world applications, the Sport had that extra dose of sex appeal

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Side

The 750 Sport was one of the best-handling bikes of the period, and with 62hp and a fat wedge of midrange torque on tap and five gears to choose from, it had the punch to get you between corners quickly as well.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport L Side Rear

From the original eBay listing: 1974 Ducati 750 Sport for Sale

12,019 Kilometers  (7,451 miles)

This is a 1973 production year of which only 746 were produced – see Ian Falloon’s excellent book – “The Ducati 750 Bible, pages 74-75” on VIN numbers. “The 1973 750 Sport was a very elemental motorcycle, the lightest of all the 750s and totally uncompromised.” Page 76. I can attest to this statement as it is a no frills, takes no prisoners and is raw & visceral experience.

I’ve owned this 1974 Ducati 750 Sport since March of 2007. It is in beautiful and extraordinary condition with 12,019 kilometers (7,451 miles) on the clock! I have the history of the bike from December 1995. A gentleman in Massachusetts purchased it December 1995 and later sold it in May 2004 to another gentleman in Massachusetts. He kept it until I purchased the bike in March 2007. The bike has only covered 591 kilometers (366 miles) since December 1995. The bike sits in the garage, covered up and only ridden a few miles each summer. It has always started on the first or second kick even after not being ridden for months. I have photocopies of the previous titles listing names, dates and odometer statements, which may be inspected and are included with the sale.

Original Veglia instruments with only 12,019 Kilometers (7,451 miles). The speedometer has the correct trip reset knob

As you can see from the pictures, there are two gas tanks. The one on the ground plus 4 additional pictures is the original fiberglass tank. Due to ethanol mandated by Colorado, I never put gas into that tank. Other than a slight lifting of the decal (see photo), it is in excellent condition. It’s been stored in my office since I took ownership. 

The tank that is on the bike is a reproduction. I purchased that tank from a well-known Ducati specialist (name not disclosed but receipt is included) that was supposed to be ethanol resistant. Additionally, Caswell coating was used but the ethanol gas still affected the tank. It has bubbled on the side but is fully serviceable for everyday ridding – there are no leaks or seeping of gas 

All receipts and documents that I have accumulated during my ownership will be provided.

1974 Ducati 750 Sport Engine

The seller includes quite a bit more information over at the original listing, so be sure to check it out if this bike piques your interest.

I’m a huge fan of the particular shade of yellow used on the Sport. Yellow can be a really vibrant, attention-getting color, but this particular yellow is almost subtle. It’s certainly a color that flatters the Sport. Technically, 1974 saw some changes to the Sport, with black cases giving way to polished items, and a Brembo front brake replacing the Scarab shown here. I wouldn’t worry about that too much: the black cases look great, and many bikes of the era used whatever was lying around the factory, so it’s very possible these bits are original.

All-in-all, one of the most desirable sports motorcycles of all time, and likely to continue to appreciate in value.

-tad

1974 Ducati 750 Sport R Side Front

Original Round-Case: 1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport for Sale

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport L Side

A bike that probably needs no introduction, the original 750 Super Sport was built to celebrate Ducati’s against-the-odds 1-2 victory at Imola in 1972, cementing forever the image of Ducati and its Desmo L-twin sportbikes. With only 401 built, the “round-case” 750 Super Sport is one of the most desirable motorcycles of all time, and a bike credited with saving Ducati from the junkyard of history. The first time, at least…

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport R Engine Detail

Although Ducati’s “desmodromic” valvetrain is now offered on every one of their models, when the 750 Super Sport was introduced, it was available only on the most sporting singles and twins: the GT and Sport both made do with simple valve springs. And although the SS shared the GT’s frame, the motor also featured a lighter crankshaft, high-compression pistons, and larger carburetors.

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport Cockpit

Controls were uncompromising and set up for performance riding, with bodywork that barely cloaked the mechanicals. Note the distinctive vertical stripe on the tank. It’s actually unpainted fiberglass, allowing the rider to reliably gauge fuel level. Ducati brakes during this period often varied year-to-year and sometimes from bike-to-bike, with Lockheed, Scarab, and Brembo parts being common. The Super Sport generally used the Scarabs shown here, although an improved version compared that featured a bleed screw [?!] and a third disc at the rear, also by Scarab, a relative novelty at the time.

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport L Engine Detail

From the original eBay listing: 1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport for Sale

I purchased this motorcycle new in June 1975 and have since been the only one to ride or wrench on it. The bike is titled as a 1975 using it’s engine number not the different frame number as that is how the Ducati paperwork came from the factory. Be assured this is a real deal 1974 roundcase. The engine has never been apart and still has it’s factory seal. It neither burns or leaks oil and the transmission and clutch work as they should. I have made a few mods over the  years including-electronic ignition-stainless spokes- Brembo front master cylinder and stainless brake lines-new decals and replacement coils. I still have the original parts if the new owner wants them. The fiberglass tank has been coated inside to resist modern gas but I always drain it after riding to be safe. This is the best running motorcycle I have ever ridden and hate to sell but it has become to valuable for me to ride or repair in case of an accident.

The finish of the paint and chrome have deteriorated greatly over time especially the frame. The exhaust is original and has a small hole patched in the crossover under the engine. The photos show the carbs with the original velocity stacks but I always rode with Uni foam filters installed. The mileage shown is actually in kilometers.

I installed new tires, battery, fuel lines, oil and cleaned and installed pumper diaphragms in the carbs this spring. It needs nothing to be ridden and enjoyed as is or would be a good choice for a cosmetic restoration.

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport Fairing

In the Questions and Answers section, the seller also mentions that this is the original paint. Good question since, although the photos are of decent quality, the light makes them look like the body panels have a pearlescent color that looks more modern…

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport Head

Overall, this is a pretty impressive example of a running Super Sport, and the seller has helpfully provided a short video here. This is no museum piece, and although there are some cosmetic flaws, that’s to be expected of a 40 year old paint that wasn’t the best quality even when new… With active bidding up north of $85,000 this is an auction most of us will unfortunately have to watch from the sidelines.

-tad

1974 Ducati 750 Super Sport R Side

The Icon: 1977 Ducati 900SS for Sale

1977 Ducati 900SS R Side

Ducati’s follow up to their 750 SuperSport, the 900SS was introduced in 1975 and produced in much higher numbers than that earlier machine. It featured the controversial “square case” engine designed to fit in with the range-wide restyle penned by famed designer Giorgetto Giugiaro. While his automotive designs are, without a doubt, some of the most beautiful of all time, his motorcycle designs were far more controversial, although the angular look of the cases does not significantly detract from the lines of the bike.

1977 Ducati 900SS Engine

Engine internals were simply an evolution of the earlier L-twin, although with displacement bumped to 864cc. Shift was moved to the left side of the bike to satisfy US requirements and tastes, along with a quieter exhaust, now happily replaced with a set of barking Contis! In 1979, Ducati fitted a set of cast wheels that are obviously an improvement in terms of weight, but many purists prefer the wire wheels seen on this earlier example.

1977 Ducati 900SS Dash

From the original eBay listing: 1977 Ducati 900SS for Sale

I decided to list one of my precious Ducati Bevels, for selling consideration I have this gorgeous and very rare 1977 Ducati 900SS, silver and blue. This particular year and model is most sought after because of the wire wheels , color combo, solo seat and kick start. 

Bike looks great, way above average for its year and I am sure whoever is interested is most familiar with all the particulars about these magnificent machines. I just had the shop do the service, carbs, battery, fluids, brakes and tires all taken care. Very well preserved this bike is set up for riding, not just displaying, everything works just as should, bike was definitely enjoyed by the previous owners but very well taken care, no leaks, no funny smells or noises.  I occasionally ride it to shows or motorcycle gatherings and it puts a smile on my face each time, the looks, the sound and the crowd it attracts is hard to match . The bike is not a museum piece , or flawless condition, there are dents, nicks, paint chips, but no accidents or major defects. 

I took some close up photo with all major body parts so you could see the condition of the paint. The poor OEM quality Ducati used in 70’s is very well documented and unless bike was kept inside is impossible to avoid the cracks in clear coat that eventually translates in paint chipping or fading. The decals were all water transferred over the clear coat and that did not help either, every one of these Ducati suffer from same problem. I am no expert and since i don’t know all its history I can’t tell what is original and what is not but i can assure you this bike is the real deal, wheels, fork, shocks, Conti exhaust, 40mm Dellortos, all correct.

Check the VIN on motor and frame, listed with the registry.

Bike stats easy and runs very well, comes with CA title (previous owner, never cared to transfer the title since I ride it very little and did not want to add another owner since I only had the bike for short period of time)

1977 Ducati 900SS Fairing

It’s important to note that, as the seller mentions, many of the cosmetic defects visible on this bike are a result of poor finish from the factory, and unless the bike has been restored, flaws like this are nearly unavoidable.

Other than some peeling decals though, this looks like a very worthy example of the breed, and one of the most iconic sportbikes of all time.

-tad

1977 Ducati 900SS L Side