So... First of all, pardon my English and partially extremely crappy photos.
I live in Finland and have been a Ducati fan since 2006 when I saw this full carbon 996S at a motorbike show.
I was in the army back then and starting university studies after that so there was no chance on Earth to get a Ducati. The 748/996 etc. styling was never my favorite after seeing the facelift-999 with the beautiful black swingarm. It was love at first sight. In my books the 1x98 styling is very "Japanese" and not so original as the 999, and Panigale is not a real Ducati to me anymore - no trellis frame and no dry clutch
After failing miserably with my studies I worked for Nokia for one summer (2011) and started my own business at the same time. Business started going well next year and after a couple of years the dream of getting a Ducati came back to haunt me. Originally I would have wanted an R but in Finland there are maybe one or two 2005-2006 models and they cost an absolute fortune compared to US prices for example. So at this point I set my heart on a 2005-2006 999S Monoposto, in red of course
Ducatis are a rare breed here. They are expensive and scarce and there aren't too many service specialists around. At the moment I'm writing this there are in total 169 Ducatis for sale on the biggest used/new motorcycle online marketplace in Finland. About 30 out of those are new bike (2016 or unridden 2015). When I started looking for a 999S there were only older 2003-2004 models available in Finland. And like three of them... It was obvious I needed to start looking elsewhere so I browsed all German and Dutch marketplaces every day.
After three months of unsuccessful searching there had been three "matches". One very pretty example in the Netherlands which got sold already, one +20k km example in Germany and one bike which had a full carbon bodywork painted as a Fila replica. I wanted a low-mile example so the +20k bike was out of the question and I have never been a fan of the Fila paintwork...so that put me back in square one.
Until one evening I saw a beautiful 2006 S with only 8544km. I sent a message to the seller instantly and he turned out to be a real Ducatista - he was building a 851 with a 996 engine, full carbon kevlar bodywork etc. He was selling the 999 due to wanting a Monster S4RS. I got more pictures and details and everything sounded good. The seller was the second owner and the bike had had belts done 3500km ago along with a full suspension service. He had all keys, code card, service book, owner's manual and receipts for services.
The seller kept the non-OEM carbon parts (front mudguard, hugger, air runner covers, V fairing) and the reverse shifter. After removing those the bike was pretty much original apart from the tasty blue Samco hoses, DP tail tidy, ABM levers, carbon heel guards and an MRA windscreen. The gearing was lowered a bit with a +2 rear sprocket and there was also a nice TSS/EVR 48t slipper clutch and a Termi half system + ECU installed. The original ECU and silencer came with the bike but not a front cylinder pipe though (not like I needed it for anything...).
So the bike was in Germany and I was in Finland, there was about 2000km between me and her. I started finding out about different delivery companies and got lucky with the first
one I found! They had a truck in southern Germany next week and would be able to pick up the bike with no problem. Fast forward one week and the seller had his money, the delivery company got my bike and I was biting my fingernails waiting for it to arrive in Finland. I had to have it delivered to my girlfriend's mother's house since I didn't have a garage back then. And since the bike needed to be registered I had no use for it before the inspection etc.
After a couple of days of waiting I finally saw the bike for the first time and apart from being a bit dirty (on the engine etc.) it was perfect. This was in August 2014.
But as usual, there was a lot to be done with it. The silencer had ugly Termignoni decals covering the FOR RACING USE ONLY text since in Germany that's an illegal silencer (and they have MOT every second year!). Like I said the engine was dirty and there was a lot of cleaning needed. Here's one pic when I tested a Corse clutch cover, you can see all the muck - I can't stand even looking at this...
To be continued...