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in late 2012 i bought this 400ss. 1 of 20 bought into au in 93. it was cheap. always be wary of a cheap ducati. ranking high as one of my more stupid purchases. should have walked away on sight of the rusted out tank. anyway, dumped in cash, etc. bought some f1 fairings and a super cool endurance style tail to make it an f1/tt1 style thing like moto motivo do, but then sold the bodywork to some blokes i knew who were resurrecting an f1 for a bloke who was terminal, so more worthy than me. then decided to put the 400 engine into minnie the yellow monster for a play and so it all came apart.
then got powdercoated, etc, prep for reassembly. nutso cosmetic resto on a worthless bike - you know how it is. everything was done - all fasteners and fittings replated, speedo and tacho needles repainted, etc. got a cheap s/h single seat base from rudy in the netherlands and had to make up seats to go on it, so some things i hadn't done before. as it had black wheels i decided to paint it silver like a 900fe, matched to the st2 silver because i couldn't come up with another. couple of weeks after it was done a customer bought his paul smart in and i saw the colour i wanted. too late. custom decals from cutgrafix - std style, but black/gold instead of gold/silver. i rode it on a club plate for quite a few months, and played with the jetting a bit and it was a great little bike. very slow, but just fun. once jetted right it would run to 11 happily, and taking it there from a standing start through the first 3 gears was just hysterical.
advertised it for about what i figured i'd spent (7k), got 5 and a half. which surprised me - i was thinking i'd end up lower. mainly got rid of it because it's a pre 98 small block, and i'm over pre 98 small blocks for a few fairly minor reasons. and i have a couple more things to do that i liked a lot more, and as such this was just superfluous.
late 2017 a customer rang and asked if i wanted to buy his 400 monster - he'd been taken out in a local shopping strip by a u-turner. broken femur and type 1 diabetes from the trauma, which is nasty. lots of damage on both sides. too old to go on our written off register, and the insurance company had offered him the wreck for the price of towing. sure i said. it was pretty rooted. sold the rear wheel, then got the bug. found a guy to fix the frame, now it sits half way to being a chopper-ish thing, and when the club permit rules change as they say they will it'll be 8 years from a permit, not 3 so it's a long termer. very. has a noisy 3rd gear and now a cracked crankcase mount. i have other engines that can go in it, not sure what.
i think "fork" on the tail and tank means "use the fork lift".
That Mini SS looks really nice. Pity it's only a 400, but I guess there's a 400 market there - unlike in the US where learners can go out and buy a Panigale if they so desire and someone signs the financing papers for them.
I think the writing on the tail simply translates to Faaark.
400ss was a japanese market model. they made 350ss for the italian tax break up to 92 maybe, and 400ss until 97 i think. there's a really cool ss junior japanese model of the 750 sport/1990 900ss style - two piece 16" marvic/akron wheels, floating cast iron discs.
our learner law was 250cc, now it's the lams - learner approved motorcycle scheme - and up to 660cc. most things that big are restricted throttle wise. ducati make a 659 monster with about half throttle opening. triumph was making a 660cc street triple (both destroked) and their new trident thing is 660. yamaha make a specific mt07 with less cc than the usual one. pretty amazing they bother.