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Blood Sweat Tears and Grease => Projects => Cafe Racers => Topic started by: rentedshoes on Aug 15, 2017, 11:10:59

Title: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 15, 2017, 11:10:59
I'm the proud owner of the worst Ducati in Dallas. Despite many signs that I should have passed on the deal my excitement for what the bike could be got the better of me. I should have bailed when the seller mentioned an out of state title. We'll see how that works out in the long run. I should have bailed when he told me it didn't have a plate. I should have bailed when the seat wouldn't stay on.
However, my excitement for this new project and a need to get home found some cash changing hands and me riding away on a 1997 Ducati 748 Superbike. The worst Ducati in Dallas. I made it about half way home before the rear wheel locked up and me and the bike slid down the ramp on to the highway. Fast forward about two hours and I had a the cheapest Ducati in Dallas in my garage, a chunk of cash back in my pocket and a little road rash to show for it. I was wearing gear and it saved me a trip to the hospital. I ruined a carbon helmet, a jacket and a pair of gloves. And to tell the truth, I was happy to do so.

Things could have been a LOT worse. The seller was a fairly stand-up guy, I was not injured, the bike is easily repairable and I learned a valuable lesson the hard way. When you brain says "walk away" or more importantly, "don't ride that piece if shit home" it's time to listen up. I've got tens on tens of thousands of miles on motorcycles. This was not down to in experience. It was down to rider error. The error I made before I even turned the key.

The end result is that I have what appears to be a solid chassis and motor. Which is really all I needed in the first place. the body work went out to the curb this morning. My plan is to build a heavily cafe-inspired custom.

Picture below is from the CL ad. I don't have any post-crash pictures as I went straight to work the next day tearing it down for the build. Tons of updates to come.

(http://i.imgur.com/docwcys.png)


Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: canyoncarver on Aug 15, 2017, 15:26:51
Good story.  Looking forward to the updates.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: Cookie on Aug 15, 2017, 15:32:24
Too bad about your crash. Glad to hear you're alright!
Nice looking bike and good on the seller for looking out for your misfortune with his f-ed up machine.

Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: CrabsAndCylinders on Aug 16, 2017, 00:16:17
I'll be watching your progress, very cool!
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 16, 2017, 19:33:01
Sweet, I would love a 748 to do a custom build on!  I hope you got the deal of a life time on it?
What are your plans for it?  Hopefully you will get a 5 spoke front wheel to tie in with the rear.  If it was mine I wouldn't be considering "cafe racer" style though.  Look forward to following your build :)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 17, 2017, 08:04:48
I'm glad there is some interest. This build is going to be fairly high-end. My goal is for some coverage or perhaps the opportunity to show at the handbuilt show in Austin. I've got a long update for you fellas.

When I started to tear into the bike I discovered that the previous owner's ratchet only seemed to torn bolts counter-clockwise. Nothing on the body was remotely tight. The result is that the gas tank came off in the crash. I would think that bolting down a steel tank full of combustible liquid that sits directly in front of your nuts would be a priority. However, the PO didn't feel the same way.
The is in fairly rough shape. But that's not really a concern as it is going to be replaced by a carbon unit that is being built right now. The big problem is that Ducati fits plastic quick releases in the fuel lines. Which broke off. And not just in a way that could be easily removed. Thy sheared flush with the fuel pump housing. The result was that I had to remove the fuel pump to extract the remaining plastic. I ordered a salvage fuel pump just in case I damaged the threads on the housing.

I ordered some really nice metal fittings to replace the plastic ones. Replacement OEM plastic fittings were going to be almost as expensive.

(http://i.imgur.com/Xb7vR5F.jpg)

With new fittings installed it was time to shove the fuel pump back in and start up the bike. I discovered that I had damaged the fuel pump seal when gas started to pour onto the garage floor as quickly as I was pouring it into the tank. Crap. Aside from the headache of not having another seal on hand. I had to then deal with a gallon and a half of fuel still pouring from the tank and what seemed like 5 gallons of gas on the garage floor slowly creeping towards the fridge and more importantly, the other bikes.

After an hour or so of cleaning up the spill I decided to see if I could find a replacement seal locally. It turns out that a local shop across town had one. So, off I went.
Now, I'm not cheap by any stretch. And it IS a Ducati. So, I expect to pay a premium for parts. But I was a bit surprised to see a $15 price tag for this:
(http://i.imgur.com/7oUul3R.jpg)

With no other option, internet prices were $20 plus shipping, I paid the lady and moved on. After all, its not what it is but what it does that is important. I suppose that $15 to not burn down your motorcycle and the surrounding property is a sound investment.
Little did I know at the time I would have the pleasure of making that same purchase two more times as I promptly destroyed the first replacement seal on arrival home. The saving grace is that with the shop no closed for two days I was able to consult both the work shop manual and youtube for tips on proper installation. Turns out it's a whole thing where you have to create your own press using long bolts, some nuts and washers to press the thing in perfectly, and I mean perfectly, square. This new found knowledge helped me to get the pump gasoline-tight again.

The first thing any member of the Ducatista does with a bike equipped with a dry clutch is ditch the clutch cover. The PO was no exception. This resulted in the clutch being torn from the bike in the crash. I had snagged the spring retainer from the side of the road. And while researching fuel pump installation over a beer, I decided to use it to decorate one of my tap handles.
(http://i.imgur.com/IZ7pVp7.jpg)
(http://i.imgur.com/M4IjXP3.jpg)

Having to replace the clutch proved to be nothing more than inconvenient as Ducati spec'd the same clutch on a number of models for a long time. Also, because this is a trade mark feature of the brand, there are tons of parts available. I ordered up this little guy and a VERY minimal clutch cover. C'mon, I can go against the Ducatista.

(http://i.imgur.com/XgOjVAU.jpg)

Apart from having to run out to find a torque wrench to tighten the springs to the proper torque, the clutch instal was very easy and straight-forward.

With the tank holding gas and the clutch installed I was ready to fire it up for the first time since the crash. I wanted to asses the motor before I got too far into the build. The seller told me that it had been bored out to 850cc. With the host of aftermarket parts the bike had, I was inclined to believe him. This marking on the cam cover lends credibility to this claim.

(http://i.imgur.com/fkWYE2N.jpg)

With most of the plastics headed to the Lewisville dump, I didn't really have a good place to put the battery that normally lives just behind the radiator on the right side. So I rolled out my handy shop stool to lend a hand. Battery reconnected, clutch installed, gas in the tank it was time to fire it up. In slo-mo you can see exactly where in the rotation the power stroke is. Pretty neat.

<iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/229984224" width="640" height="640" frameborder="0" webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen allowfullscreen></iframe>
<p>IMG_4765 (https://vimeo.com/229984224) from matt mueller (https://vimeo.com/user37500516) on Vimeo (https://vimeo.com).</p>

After running it for a minute or two, I began to notice a little bit of smoke radiating off the bike. Not surprising. I'm sure it was residue from the engine degreasing I had given it. Then I panicked. There was a trickle of gas creating a small pool under the bike. Perfect. I had visions of this bike burning down in my driveway. The bike was shut off and tank removed with a serious quickness. After a few minutes the bike had cooled and enough of the gas had evaporated for a quick inspection. Turns out the fuel lines between the throttle bodies were not only cracked but labeled "not for fuel injection". Now, I'm not a motorcycle scientist or anything but something tells me it is time to replace ALL the fuel lines with fuel injection approved lines. So, I'mm off to get some fuel lines. More to come soon!
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 17, 2017, 08:31:14
Sweet, I would love a 748 to do a custom build on!  I hope you got the deal of a life time on it?
What are your plans for it?  Hopefully you will get a 5 spoke front wheel to tie in with the rear.  If it was mine I wouldn't be considering "cafe racer" style though.  Look forward to following your build :)

Johnu, thanks for your interest. You've got a keen eye to catch the mismatched wheels. They are not staying. I'll probably sell them at some point to further recoup some cash. I've got my eye on a set of Marchesini's.

I'm doing this one cafe style because I love the minimalist, engine focused look. Ducati's are essentially a bunch of stuff bolted to an engine. I plan to for the engine to be the focal point and all the rest as functional accents. The details will be revealed as they come to fruition. No sense laying out an entire build only for some body to "borrow" all your ideas before you get a chance to execute them. Also, these projects tend to evolve as they go. Who knows, maybe I'll get some knobbies and riser bars and make it a tracker like my last Ducati ;)
(http://i.imgur.com/UE1fiFq.jpg)


Below is a picture from the initial tear down. You can start to see the lines. Admittedly, it looks like a street-fighter in this picture. The reality is that street-fighters began as sport bikes that had been crashed and body work removed.
(http://i.imgur.com/EJoVmKt.jpg)

More to come soon. I got a box from UPS yesterday afternoon that I haven't opened up yet. I hope you fellas like carbon.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: stroker crazy on Aug 17, 2017, 09:11:28
I hope you fellas like carbon.

Ha!

Crazy
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: coyote13 on Aug 17, 2017, 12:03:29
Might be the worst Ducati in Dallas but that's easily the best tap handle I've seen in all of DFW!  I'm in it to win it, love a good Duc project
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 17, 2017, 19:43:24
Biggest hurdle I see is that you are starting off with one of the all time best looking motorcycles ever designed :)  If you build something that is worthy of that handbuilt show you mentioned (I looked it up) though we are in for a treat  8) 
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 17, 2017, 20:49:39
So, don't get in the habit of three significant updates a day but I got another one for you fellas.

@Johnu the goal here is ridiculous, badass perfection. Which leads me to my next update.

Remember that box I mentioned?
(http://i.imgur.com/ejDxGSq.jpg)
(http://i.imgur.com/Gy01KTo.jpg)
Well that presents a bit of a tale. You see, Ducati, in pursuit of a quickly removable gas tank made the air box part of the gas tank mount. Which is plastic. It's the rubber grommet just behind the ignition barrel.
(http://i.imgur.com/63r2WCi.jpg)
Note the little wiener that goes into the hole. It's a cute lil nubbin. ;)
(http://i.imgur.com/57iJocW.jpg)
(http://i.imgur.com/h1P2COu.jpg)
Now, there are tons of options for neat looking filters and intake trumpets but why bother if they are hidden within the airbox? If you ask the Ducatista, the motor runs much better with the air box in tact. There's some ram air bullshit that on the factory bike came in under the headlights. As I'm ditching the ram air setup, because it looks dumb without the factory body work, I began to question the need for the air box. I could easily fab a tubular steel gas tank mount behind the head-tube. I agree that this would be really clean and reasonably trick. Especially if I ditch the ignition barrel that lives just behind the head-tube. However, I can't get past the thought that a couple of pieces of steel is the "cheap way out". I'm not made of money and I certainly don't want to waste it. So the air box stays in some form.
(http://i.imgur.com/4mmq4Ue.png)

Well, David Mills, it ain't Gweneth Paltrow's severed head.

(http://i.imgur.com/NXQuZTy.jpg)
That, my friends, is a genuine, bonafied carbonfiber air box. Somewhere, David Mills is relieved.
(http://i.imgur.com/GEQSn9N.jpg)
Mounting hardware hasn't arrived yet. Yes, that was missing when I bought the bike. Oh yea, I replaced the fuel lines this evening. Look at that little guy poking out.
(http://i.imgur.com/Aewls8F.jpg)
And with the intake trumpets. I can't help but think that there is some work to be done with the airbox. I decided to test with the factory airbox first.
Before:
(http://i.imgur.com/dvgOo9d.jpg)
After:
(http://i.imgur.com/5p3zYFE.jpg)
Yes, some other things have been moved around between the pictures. Turns out the headlight assembly is crucial to the bike running. So it will stay until I can remove the key pieces. Right now, I need to keep the bike functional before I really go bananas. Also, you can now see the line on which the seat/tail-section will be created.
Also, there is a visual lightening that happens when you can see through the airbox.
(http://i.imgur.com/ElgzyWA.jpg)
Does that serve the same function as the original airbox? Probably not. But it is an opportunity to create some detail. Perhaps some mesh over the ram air ports. Perhaps not. We'll just have to watch this ugly duc become a swan.
 



Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 21, 2017, 11:59:08
While Iím waiting on parts Iíve been plotting how exactly to handle the seat and requisite frame/subframe mods. As Ducati intended only for itís horrible ďmonopostoĒ rear section fitting anything else is going to take some effort.

Below is the inspiration for my project. Yes, itís two generations newer but with the older bike I escape all the clunky electronics and wonky anti-theft features.  The bummer with this bike is that I feel that they missed the lines of the saddle. The green paint on the seat pan is below the green line on the tank. Also, much of the trellis frame is obscured by stuff.
(http://i.imgur.com/9epyQKy.jpg)

Now, I will say that I hope my bike turns out as nice as this one. It truly is beautiful. However, as with anybody elseís project there are things I would have done differently.

(http://i.imgur.com/GJTQiE1.jpg)

The red lines are the trellis main frame. The yellow is the subframe that they fabricated for the cafť tail. The blue line is the line from the bottom of the tank that transitions to the top of the seat. The issue is that none of these different color lines are parallel or perpendicular. This makes my OCD crazy. Iím sure there are reasons this bike was constructed this way but I really want to avoid these design compromises on my build.

Below is one way of creating a new subframe for the bike that will accommodate a cafť-inspired tail section. This does involve adding a new tube under the gas tank and running it straight back to the end of the bike. Also, the lower subframe brace would then be parallel to one of the other frame braces.

(http://i.imgur.com/xRRxz3d.jpg)

The upside is that this creates beautiful lines and is a bit of a nod to a featherbed frame. The downside is that this requires two fairly large and complicated tubes to be fabricated and added to the frame. And while this may add a negligible amount to rigidity to the frame, it does have the potential to add some weight.

A similar effect can be achieved in what may be a more simple solution.
(http://i.imgur.com/IL2a37U.jpg)
By just adding a subframe to the back of the existing mainframe, you are able to forgo fabricating a fairly complicated piece of steel. You are able to achieve lines that will match those that already exist. Also, you leave more of the engine in view. And since having the engine as the centerpiece of the project is the goal, this may be the way to fly. A cool side effect is that the body is able to levitate above the frame. A lot of BMW customs use this effect and it lightens the bike visually.

Option three would be to do something like this 748 by Radical Ducati.
(http://i.imgur.com/wAXeoVA.jpg)
They did basically the same thing I am proposing but perhaps done a little better. As they did not use a stock-shaped tank, they lost that long straight line it generates. They opted to use the line from the frame brace that angles up as it goes back. This brings the tail up in a more modern fashion.  This is a slippery slope because there are some bikes out there that this generates a ďVĒ at the tank/seat junction and can take a laborious project and make it look half-assed.  Also, the angle can be too severe and stick the back end waaaay up in the air.

And finally, perhaps the best way to fly is to utilize both the lines of the tank and frame. After all, many people believe that the 996/748 was the most beautiful Ducati ever made. I disagree; I think the 1098 is the best. Which leads me here.\

(http://i.imgur.com/EdX6mkh.jpg)

Using the factory lines for the body creates lines that are consistent. Using the existing lines of the frame to create a new subframe keeps things simple and avoids adding any new angles into the mix.

Iíd love to hear some opinions on which way to go, as I am clearly uncertain.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: Popeye SXM on Aug 21, 2017, 14:10:56
I lov'in your project. I don't like the Radical duc, I prefer your tank especially if you want a "cafe racer". I would go for option number 2, (as drawn over your bike). I like the green bike (not the color) I agree they didn't get the seat/ tank right
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 21, 2017, 16:28:07
Personally I think the radical Ducatis are the best custom Ducs I've seen!  Imho I would not be trying to create that typical cafe straight line seat/tank alignment that you seem to be looking for.  I am interested to see which way you go.  All I would say is don't choose one option over the other because it is easier to accomplish :)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: RR100 on Aug 21, 2017, 17:57:59
Personally I think the radical Ducatis are the best custom Ducs I've seen!  Imho I would not be trying to create that typical cafe straight line seat/tank alignment that you seem to be looking for.  I am interested to see which way you go. 

Agreed. Pepo's Duc's are beautiful. The Straight lines tank-to-seat one frequently sees, to my eye, seem more a limitation of fabrication skills than optimum aesthetics. In any event, watching with interest.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: Alex jb on Aug 24, 2017, 18:11:14
Great to see consideration going on not just hack and hope :)


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Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 24, 2017, 20:51:31
Great to see consideration going on not just hack and hope :)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Probably not too many people just hacking Ducatis ;D
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 24, 2017, 23:48:03
Not to hijack you thread or anything but this is my fav radical Duc aside from the 3 spoke wheels of course :D  You are very lucky to be building a custom Duc and I look forward to more updates on the build whichever direction you go with it :)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: teazer on Aug 25, 2017, 13:02:25
I am a big fan of carbon fiber, but not a fan of tiny headlamp shell bubble butt seats.  To me, they look out of proportion and don't match the frame style or the tank.

Style is a personal thing and what looks right to one of us may look like crap to someone else, so these are just my thoughts.

The frame is OK as is and it may even be possible to keep the subframe if you kept the underseat pipes, but with a different shaped seat hump. If you go with low pipes, the back end of the subframe might be hanging out there behind thr seat hump.  The subframe has a nice curve which could be incorporated into the seat shape or hidden if you go with a more vertical seat back.

With a bread box tank the seat probably needs to have some "squareness" to it so I'm thinking an updated version of the old 750SS Imola seat - restyled to work better with the tank.  Or perhaps an MHR (original) inspired seat shape. The tank sets the tone for the overall shape/style and the rest has to work with it. Square or round, long or short, fairing or not, low pipes or underseat or high level

That's a thought.  High level pipes like an SS - something like this one in principle. http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/Classic%20Racers/Ducati%20750%20SS%20Corsa%2075.jpg


With the frame, I would not alter the main frame.  And the subframe doesn't have to have the table top/Featherbed look in steel.  It can be implied by matching the seat and tank lines without cutting metal. I'd probably change the frame color to black with any color bodywork or red with silver just because it reminds me of the best looking Norton 650Ss cafe racer I remember from the sixties.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: esmoojee on Aug 25, 2017, 14:20:19
Just out of curiosity, what caused your back wheel to lock? 
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: dakine_surf on Aug 26, 2017, 06:55:12
Just out of curiosity, what caused your back wheel to lock?
By how he described it, sounds like condensation in the brake lines.  I had the same thing happen on the front brake on a supermoto I had that sat for 8 months.  Honestly I didn't remember the last time it had had a brake service either, probably a year before that.

Brake fluid is hygroscopic meaning it can absorb moisture from the air... in some cases when the brake is hot, this water will travel down to the caliper.  When that water hits the hot caliper it flash boils and evaporates quickly creating pressure which can lock up the brakes.  Not fun on the front for sure.  The lesson here is to service your brakes regularly.  This happens more to smaller calipers that are working hard to shave off heat.  Modern dual disk, with multiple pistons and heat sinks handle it better than say my stock front dirtbike caliper on a bigger rotor, or the OPs smaller rear brake.

Not sure this is what happened to the OP, but that was my experience... caused me 2 days in the hospital and 8 weeks recovery from a broken collar bone from my helmet crushing into it when I hit the ground.  A few broken ribs, 2 fingers and a rowdy concussion.  Luckily I was wearing full get or I might not be here today.  I completely cracked an Arai helmet from smacking the pavement.  It was a rough crash, I actually took almost 3/4 of a year off of riding because of all the physical therapy and my shoulder not being strong enough to comfortably control a bike.


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Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: brad black on Aug 26, 2017, 23:22:06
looks like the rear hub eccentric has been rotated to the top, lowering the rear.  seems low at the back.

generally rear wheels lock due to not enough freeplay in the rear brake pedal.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: johnu on Aug 27, 2017, 20:08:12
I am a big fan of carbon fiber, but not a fan of tiny headlamp shell bubble butt seats.  To me, they look out of proportion and don't match the frame style or the tank.

Style is a personal thing and what looks right to one of us may look like crap to someone else, so these are just my thoughts.

The frame is OK as is and it may even be possible to keep the subframe if you kept the underseat pipes, but with a different shaped seat hump. If you go with low pipes, the back end of the subframe might be hanging out there behind thr seat hump.  The subframe has a nice curve which could be incorporated into the seat shape or hidden if you go with a more vertical seat back.

With a bread box tank the seat probably needs to have some "squareness" to it so I'm thinking an updated version of the old 750SS Imola seat - restyled to work better with the tank.  Or perhaps an MHR (original) inspired seat shape. The tank sets the tone for the overall shape/style and the rest has to work with it. Square or round, long or short, fairing or not, low pipes or underseat or high level

That's a thought.  High level pipes like an SS - something like this one in principle. http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/Classic%20Racers/Ducati%20750%20SS%20Corsa%2075.jpg


With the frame, I would not alter the main frame.  And the subframe doesn't have to have the table top/Featherbed look in steel.  It can be implied by matching the seat and tank lines without cutting metal. I'd probably change the frame color to black with any color bodywork or red with silver just because it reminds me of the best looking Norton 650Ss cafe racer I remember from the sixties.

Hey Richard do you mean a tail more like this one?  Another Radical Ducati btw!  You are so right about what looks awesome to one person looks like crap to another!  That's why you build the bike that you like not what other people think it should be.  That's what I love about custom building, you get exactly what YOU want 8)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: Popeye SXM on Aug 27, 2017, 20:19:24
Change the headlights and WOW, that is more like it  8)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: teazer on Aug 28, 2017, 13:46:02
John, that is a very sexy bike for sure.  I like the color, fairing and tank and the way the seat is incorporated into the style.  That tail piece is a copy of a TD3/ twin shock TZ and IMHO is still too small and strangely a little too razor edged.

I was initially thinking of this https://img.newatlas.com/1972-ducati-750ss-200-miles-imola-racer.jpg?auto=format%2Ccompress&fit=max&h=670&q=60&w=1000&s=0a90cbcf0310c42262a5f8d2af6bd23c  but squared up a bit to make it less round. 

But that makes me think of other Yamahas.  Check out the shape on a M1 racer.  I am sure that the hump shape could be adapted and shrunk a little to make a killer seat hump for a Duc if it were integrated much as the one you posted.

Seat shapes take me a while to work out.  The Phat Trakka was version 6 or 7.  On the Dunstall, I tried a few different shapes to try to make it work with the stock tank and went with the Dunstall for a classic look.  On another GT750 I keep going between the R7 seat in the avatar and an Aprilia RS250 rounded style.  Both have their advantages and disadvantages and I'm not a naturally gifted stylist.  It's hard work.

Each to their own.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Aug 29, 2017, 11:51:59
Good morning fellas.

Sorry for the gap in updates. Iíll catch up on a few things that are being discussed.

The rear Brake:
First, Iím reasonably certain that the rear brake locked due to water in the brake fluid. The bike looked to have sat for some time before I got it. And due to the location of the rear master, Iím sure nobody bled it unless it was absolutely necessary.

The Body:
There are tons of great ideas going up on this thread. I love that most of them are XTR Pepo or Radical Ducati. For me, those bikes strike a fantastic mix of function and form. I plan to lean a little in the opposite direction with slightly more emphasis on form than function. Donít get me wrong, this thing is going to go, stop and turn with the best of them. But aesthetics will take the front seat.
All that said, I think I have the seat/tail sorted out. There will be some exciting updates in the next month or so.

Performance:
Actual physical progress has been slow. I have spent a ton of time scouring the internet for ideas, parts and processes to achieve the build I imagine. While Iím waiting on parts from what feels like all corners of the globe, I decided to knock out a small upgrade.
Turns out the PO had installed this:
(http://i.imgur.com/3SpR9BE.jpg)
The research I did told me it was a ďStage 1Ē chip from Fast by Ferracci. A friend of mine in the racing world told me that they are pretty much the name in Ducati performance parts for that era of bike.
I emailed them and described the mods that the bike currently had and where I was headed with it. They recommended a ďStage 2Ē chip.
So, out with the old:
(http://i.imgur.com/ZibX1x9.jpg)
In with the new:
(http://i.imgur.com/jXkBW6k.jpg)
Before anybody says it, I contacted Ferracci and the chip IS installed correctly. The label was simply applied upside down. They further informed me that the dial circled in red is to lean/richen the mixture. I probably wonít be messing with that until dyno time.

Thatís all I got this morning fellas. I promise, much, much more to come. Thanks for all your interest and ideas. This is shaping up to be a fun thread.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Sep 05, 2017, 07:45:47
A friend of mine made it clear that to move forward with this build I needed to take it apart. So I did.
I labeled and pulled out all the wiring. I plan to simplify the harness during reassembly. Iím not sure exactly how much Iíll be able to remove but a rework will be necessary. Much of the fuel system, ignition and sensors will remain. There are a number of ďmystery connectorsĒ that I will have to research.

Next, I removed the clip-ons and controls as they were damaged in the crash. The brakes, and clutch slave followed. Iím debating on whether or not they will be reused. Iíve got a little bit of an itch for a set of 848 fork legs. They are available with Ohlinsí internals and they support radial mount calipers. Aaaaand according to much of the internet, they will slide with into the existing clamps. The speed-o cable becomes the only real concern. Iíve toyed with the idea of a GPS speed-o but I havenít found one that fits the project yet.

At the end of the afternoon the bike looked like this:

(https://i.imgur.com/1bAf3Pi.jpg)

And the workbench looked like this:

(https://i.imgur.com/rbgeVIQ.jpg)

Oh yea, these guys showed up earlier this week.
(https://i.imgur.com/zJ9SuIN.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/94pY7ws.jpg)
Thatís right, new clip-ons from Woodcraft. Iím probably a little too excited about them. But if your project doesnít excite you at every turn, youíre doing it wrong.

Pulling the engine to send off to my mechanic is the next step. So, weíll see how that goes.

Thanks for reading. More updates to come.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Sep 09, 2017, 16:17:23
As the Duc came further and further apart I started contemplating exactly how I was going to support the bike as the project continued. I have plenty of motorcycle stands but the only one I have that is compatible at all with the Duc is the Pit-Bull SSSA stand. There is no hole in the bottom of the lower triple. So, my head stand is out. Neither of my other stands will (securely) lift a bike by the fork. I read online about using ratchet straps in eyehooks in the ceiling but that didnít really sit well with me. My garage is pretty stinkiní pristine and I intend to keep it that way. I had planned on sending the engine away to summer camp at ďThe Metric GarageĒ. Which is my friendís moto repair shop. You see, the problem with Ducatiís (as if there is only one) is that the bottom of the motor isnít flat enough to support the engine without tipping over. Tipping is for cows, not Ducs. Also, I wanted to be able to have the motor painted and perfect to go back into the frame when it comes time. A trip to the Internet eventually yielded this:
(https://i.imgur.com/yH9tgak.jpg)

I figured that this wouldnít be my last Duc. Furthermore, Ducati did a wonderful job of making small refinements that results in all kinds of cross-compatibility across itís range for many years. Thatís basically the story of the Monster and the current Ducati Super Sport. Both parts bin bikes. A little research revealed that this engine stand would fit a huge number of Ducati engines. So I clicked ďcheck outĒ and then it was up to UPS.

The engine stand arrived Friday. Over a glass of Bourbon I hatched a plan to remove the engine early Saturday morning. One would assume that I was not the first garage monkey to attempt to pull a motor from a 748 with zero idea how to do it. The next morning, coffee in-hand, I went to the garage and thought. Surely the stand would be tall enough to get the engine close to installation height. It only stands to reason. Wouldnít you know that wasnít exactly the case. With the bike on the SSSA stand, the bolts for the engine stand damn near lined up but not quite. I tried lifting up on the front end but then I couldnít install the stand bolts. I decided to live dangerously and use the stand I had been using for the CB175 to lift the front of the bike so the engine stand could be bolted up tight. A few VERY nervous moments later the stand was installed and supporting the front end of the bike. The front end stand was quickly taken out of action.

Remember three pages ago when I said that I had bought the worst Ducati in Dallas? I found further proof when I started to remove the bolts that hold the engine to the trellis frame. You see, Ducati engines are what is known as a ďStressed MemberĒ. Which means that they are integral to the bikes structure and rigidity. Imagine my surprise to discover that the two main bolts were loose as well as the swingarm bolt. Yep, the engine was little more than finger tight in the frame. Itís a miracle that this thing got as far as it did before the rear wheel locked up. This bike was truly a mess. Itís a shame because most, and I mean MOST, people donít take a torque wrench when the go to buy a bike. In the future, I will.

Fast forward about an hour and two cups of coffee and I had this:
(https://i.imgur.com/pIlsqev.jpg)

I actually picked up the frame, front end still installed because I donít have the stupid f*cking tool to remove the yokes, and lifted it over the engine. Job done.

Around 30 minutes later I had the rolling chassis back on the ground. The problem is that the kickstand is bolted directly to the engine case. So the bike will need to remain on the SSSA stand until further notice. I reinstalled the factory clip-ons for ease of maneuverability. After all, I donít want to scratch up pretty new parts.
(https://i.imgur.com/by69RcP.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/0pGHQqp.jpg)

Stay tuned for the next update. There is literally smoke rolling off of my credit card but there are new goodies on the way. Also, I hope to detab this motherf*cker tomorrow. See everybody soon!
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: Rat_ranger on Sep 09, 2017, 17:56:54
You are lucky.  I had a 748 that decided to drop a valve at 9k rpm.  The engine was terrible to get out, I spent 2 days with a saws-all and I don't know how many blades cutting the swingarm bolt.  It was so seized to the bushings I had to cut the swingarm completely out of the frame, and use a 20t press to get the pieces out.  Ended up doing an 853 big bore as it cost the same as rebuilding it stock, luckily I had a spare set of heads for valve adjustments.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Sep 19, 2017, 11:17:24
PARTS!!!

Yep, an Ohlins front end from a 1098 complete with Brembo monoblock calipers! Everything I read says this is a direct swap. Win.

(https://i.imgur.com/3NxcBWB.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/WpRLGlK.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/r3BA2Ud.jpg)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: 1fasgsxr on Sep 19, 2017, 13:14:41
Nice !!
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: CrabsAndCylinders on Sep 20, 2017, 21:39:02
Superb!
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Oct 04, 2017, 10:51:03
Turns out that the internet was right. These forks bolted straight up. Before anybody asks, the forks were just slapped in. I donít plan on running them that high in the yokes. Iím going to set it as close as possible to factory rake/trail settings for that bike.
Wheels will be a little bit of a thing as the axle is much larger in diameter.  Iíve got my eye on a set meant for the 848 that should do the trick.

The speedo drive will be the other issue. I believe the 848 gets speed information from the trans. But Ohlins and radial mount monoblock calipers are a win.


(https://i.imgur.com/Fa2478M.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/AUZ63Zd.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/xEQ5HX1.jpg)

Iíve got two big pieces that should be arriving in the next couple of weeks. Then the fun really starts.

Completely related, anybody want a Ducati front end?  ;)
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: brad black on Oct 06, 2017, 21:07:05
axle diameter should still be 25mm, but the rh end of the 848 axle is much larger, and the 848 axle nut goes into the fork leg, so it too is larger.  i'd almost say with an 848 axle the 748 wheels and speedo drive (no tang to lock it tho) would go straight in.  but the disc offset is possibly wrong, altho that might be crap.
Title: Re: The Worst Ducati in Dallas
Post by: rentedshoes on Oct 09, 2017, 20:20:34
axle diameter should still be 25mm, but the rh end of the 848 axle is much larger, and the 848 axle nut goes into the fork leg, so it too is larger.  i'd almost say with an 848 axle the 748 wheels and speedo drive (no tang to lock it tho) would go straight in.  but the disc offset is possibly wrong, altho that might be crap.

Yea, I think you are right. Since I am planning on ditching the stock instruments I'll probably just buy a front wheel for an 848. The research I have done says I'll need offset rotors. Since I have to buy a wheel, axle and rotors, I'll just buy the right stuff for the front end and probably use a magnet-type speedo. I mean, speed is relative any way.