Tasteful Custom: 1973 Ducati 750GT Café Racer
Built around an early, very desirable “round-case” L-twin Ducati engine, this bike is based on a 750GT. As such, it does not use Ducati’s desmodromic valvetrain and makes do with simple springs instead. While that may not be as sexy to say as “Desmo”, it means that maintenance will be simplified, although the bevel-drive and tower-shaft arrangement still requires some expertise to set up correctly.
Although it’s obviously of questionable wisdom to modify such a valuable classic, most of the cosmetic modifications look like they could be easily reversed, if the new owner decides to sell, or decides that they prefer a more original style. It’s also nice to see that the engine build includes VeeTwo parts: they disappeared for a while, but it looks like this Australian company is back in business, making hot-rod parts for bevel and belt-drive Ducatis.
It’s so easy to screw something like this up, just by adding a splash too much color, or the wrong color. But the builder of this bike went simple silver. Period-correct style or not, I’m not a fan of the “750” decal on the side panels, but that’s easy enough to fix. And that Grimeca front drum looks great, although no Ducati twin I know of ever used a front drum… Otherwise, it’s a very nicely turned-out special.
From the original eBay listing: Custom 1973 Ducati 750GT
Custom café racer in the spirit of the prototype
I bought this Ducati in 2005 in the current condition with 20,609 miles on the odometer. Previous owner started with a standard 750 GT and had it extensively customized. Here is his description of the work done:
With custom paint, seat, linkage, front brake, clip-ons, side covers, and seat back, this is a one of a kind bike inspired by the prototype. The engine is completely rebuilt with improvements throughout, giving it more power and better response without jeopardizing reliability. The pistons are short skirt sport pistons from V-Two to raise the compression. The heads got lighter 7mm valves with better springs, new seats and guides. From the Carillo rods to the 36mm carbs, to the polished crank to the billet cams to the smaller stem valves, all things were considered with this project.
The bike is one of several classic bikes in my collection and it got regularly used on short trips. Bike runs extremely strong, starts with one or two kicks and is ready to ride. Nice chrome and paint with very few minor scratches.
No manual or tool kit. GA registration in my name. GA did not issue titles for bikes over 25 years old. Also have ex California title assigned to my name.
The seller also includes a more comprehensive list of modifications over on eBay, worth a look if you’re curious about this bike. The internal modifications sound like they’ve been well thought-out and the bike is ready to run, no matter what it looks like. Bidding is pretty active on this one, and up to $12,500 with the Reserve Not Met.