Tagged: GT

1984 Laverda RGS for Sale

1984 Laverda RGS L Side

Well this is pretty cool: just earlier this week, I found a Laverda RGA. Today, it’s the higher-spec RGS. The RGS was pretty much the end of the line for Laverda’s fire-breathing triple, and really the end of Laverda, until their rebirth in the 90’s with a brand new line of parallel-twin engines.

Unable to compete with the might of the Japanese in terms of pure performance and refinement, Laverda traded on their Italian “Lamborghini of motorcycles” cachet to re-imagine their hairy-chested triple as a GT for well-heeled, discriminating buyers bored with the “characterless” fours from Japan. And this transformation makes a certain kind of sense: Laverda made their name in endurance racing, and their bikes are famously durable.

1984 Laverda RGS Dash

The 981cc RGS featured available hard bags and a full fairing, with an interesting filler door set into the side of that fairing, instead of in the top of the tank, as well as complete instrumentation.

From the original eBay listing: 1984 Laverda RGS for Sale

For Sale is a single owner Laverda RGS. The condition is very good – always kept in heated storage, ridden regularly and I would not  hesitate to ride it to Wolfgang’s this summer…as I have many summers before. This bike has never been apart for anything except normal maintenance; valve adjust, clutch. brakes etc. It is not as fresh as the day it rolled out of TT Motors – it needs  to get  “freshened” up but does not need any major components The bike has always been well maintained and sprockets,all  chains, and associated rubber bits are “recent” <3-5 years with less than 5000 miles.

Mileage is currently under 33,000, odyssey battery, usable tires, paint is good for 30 years old, a few spares including original exhaust, original tools, DMC ignition, Koni shocks (Ikon maybe…). Missing front indicator will be reinstalled.

1984 Laverda RGS R Engine

While I’m not as big a fan of the 80’s styling [although it is growing on me], there is generally something to be gained by buying the final incarnations of a car or bike. Namely: most of the bugs have been worked out of the design. And if there’s been some performance loss over the years, often earlier cams and other parts can be installed to restore whatever’s gone missing.

This particular example doesn’t include too much in the way of details, but it sounds like a sympathetically maintained, one-owner machine. Certainly a big plus with a machine like this. The reserve hasn’t been met yet, but with bidding below $6,000 that’s no surprise. Depending on the seller’s expectations, this very usable classic could be a great opportunity to get into Laverda ownership.


1984 Laverda RGS R Side

Unrestored and Unmolested: Round Case 1975 Ducati 750GT

1975 Ducati 750GT R Side

The Ducati 750GT was the original Everyman Ducati Twin: the SS was a hunched-over, solo-seated racer for the road and the Sport basically deleted the fairing and added some vivid colors.  The GT had humane ergonomics and a dual seat, but kept the throbbing v-twin with tower-shaft driven cams, although it lost the now-familiar desmodromic valve actuation and used conventional springs instead.

1975 Ducati 750GT L Tank

Production began in 1971 and really introduced Ducati’s twin to the road-riding public, predating the sportier SS and Sport models.  With the introduction of the 860GT, the rounded style of the engine cases were replaced by a more angular look. While this may have seemed like a wise move towards modernity at the time, collectors have decided that the earlier, rarer, rounded-style bikes are more aesthetically pleasing and therefore more valuable.

1975 Ducati 750GT R Engine

So what happened to this machine, to find it in such a state of disrepair? Ah, the tragedy of when a loved one asks us to quit the dangerous insanity of motorcycles.  Apparently, that’s what happened in this case:

Unrestored 1975 Ducati 750GT for Sale

This 1975 DUCATI 750GT WAS LAST REGISTERED IN 1983…the original owner was “asked” by his wife to stop riding, and he stopped riding…he stopped riding the DUCATI, and watched it sit in the corner of his garage for THIRTY YEARS…I have cleaned the bike only enough to see what is present…I am not a DUCATI expert by any means, but I know bikes in general, and it is obvious that this is a RARE UNMOLESTED example of this great bike…the bike turns over with good compression (owner oiled, and turned the motor regularly, and rolled it in gear)… transmission shifts, and engages the gears…I removed the front Brembo F7 caliper intending to rebuild it…it will go back on the bike AS IS…new owner will be responsible for the rebuild…there is no battery…I have not started it, and will not try to start it…Odometer records 14,547 miles…this is actual miles since new..

This bike obviously needs a complete restoration, unless you plan to use it as part of the kitsch-y decor of a chain of family restaurants or put it in the window of a designer denim boutique…

1975 Ducati 750GT Seal

I have added  a picture of the CASE SEAL on the bottom of the motor…the lead medallion is embossed with DUCATI…it is wired to two case bolts,and confirms that the cases have never been opened…

Now that’s a pretty cool detail, and the photos are neat to see.  Something to keep an eye out while you’re browsing these at your local vintage bike gathering or prowling eBay for your next ride.  Interestingly, the 860GT was introduced in 1974 to replace the 750 which, in typical Italian car and bike form, makes it likely this was an earlier bike that simply went untitled until 1975.  Any experts out there care to chime in on this?


1975 Ducati 750GT R Rear Wheel

0 miles (none, zip, zilch) 1976 Suzuki GT550

A study in patience, restraint, self-discipline, willpower. That is all I can say when I see a zero mile bike. But reading the back story provided for the seller of this 1976 Suzuki GT550 it appears that a wooden crate helped keep the miles low.

From the seller

You are looking at a rare opportunity to own a brand new 36 year old motorcycle. This 1976 GT550 was originally in the collection of the original owner of Stubbs Suzuki in Houston (Stubbs is still going strong and the bike is on display there at this time). After his passing the bike remained in the family’s possession until it was sold in 2000 still in the crate to the man I purchased it from. He proceeded to assemble the bike but never put fuel in it or tried to start it. It has acquired .7 push miles since being assembled.  I have owned the bike for the past two years, displaying it at my home and at last years Barbers Vintage Days in the VJMC display; it was featured in the latest issue of Moto Retro Illustrated.  Chrome is excellent all around.  Tires are obviously hard but still hold air fine and don’t even have any dry rot cracks. Since it was never sold to the public it has never been titled

First offered in 1972 with the GT380 and larger, water cooled GT750, a fresh out of the box a GT550 would give you numbers like 50hp from 543cc of two-stroke power. This would push the rider and 441 lbs of bike to a top speed of 110mph. Because this bike is still fresh, you can expect those numbers to still be relevant, no depreciation of performance because of age. I would almost be willing to say this is a 2011 model year GT550.

Traditionally GT stands for Grand Tour and create images of speeding along the highways and buy-ways for hours at high rates of speed. This was possible because of the patented Ram Air system, which protected you from seizing the engine, which was very popular with 2-stroke riders of the time. A review in Cycle World says that you and your friend can go anywhere in the United States at 85mph.

A little more detail on condition

* Deterioration of the clear coat on parts of the engine.

* Small line crease in left rear of tank near seat

* Quarter sized spot of rust directly under gas cap; probably from condensation dripping down.

* Some paint rubbed off the right handlebar switch.

* The rubber on the slide linkage cover has degraded; it is almost like tar.  If you touch it it will come off on your hands.

* Right fork leg has some scratches.

* Right front fender stay has some chrome imperfections.

The seller is upfront with the condition willing to point out any flaws even with such low Zero miles. As you can see, the seller provided lots of good pictures, worthy of a brochure for this 1976/2011 GT550. BB