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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,
I'm new to the forum and new to Ducati motorcycles. I have a few questions if you all would be so kind to answer and advise. My father-inlaw bought new in 1970 a Ducati Desmo 350 Mark III. Shortly after he go it it was stolen and abused by riding it at a gravel pit. It was recovered and returned it to my dad and I think he fixed it but, never rode it much after that appears to have about 3400 miles on it. I guess it had lost its "new" appeal. It has been sitting in his garage uncovered ever since. It is pretty dirty and a little rusty but appears to be mostly there. The engine will turn over with the kick starter and the tach, seat, headlight, original tires,etc, are all there, the chrome on the gas tank looks like it might clean up, etc. It is missing several things like the brake lever, mirrors, needs shocks, exhaust pipes, needs rubber items like grips and peg covers, etc. He even has a set of fiberglass saddle bags and a backrest that he bought for it back in 1970. Now the questions: Is it worth restoring? How much trouble is it to find the correct parts? Whats it worth? Can I handle the restoration? I've never owned a motorcycle before. I am a fair mechanic and have restored a couple of muscle cars over the years but never a motorcycle let alone one from Italy. Please give me some advice. Thanks!
 

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Right, firstly, you have a very rare and desireable motorcycle, one that in restored condition would be very valuable. If you decde to go ahead with the project, you can carefully restore it to as new condition, or rebuild it to good running order.

I'm not an expert on the singles, but as far as I know all of the engine parts are available and if you are lucky, with such low mileage, you may not need them. The engines are easy to work on but quirky, so you must be careful and patient with any work you do, so as not to damage anything. Parts for these bikes can be VERY expensive. The cycle parts may be more of a problem to locate, but there are some very good suppliers worldwide and there is always eBay of course.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Duccout,

Thanks for your advice, I need to get this thing home to my shop so I can get a better idea just what I'm dealing with. I will keep you all updated as to my decision to restore or to sell.

Thanks for your reply!
 

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Bon Vivant
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I know I'm the guy that just finished a customized GT but with this bike, because it such a desirable and rare model,
be very careful to restore it as original as possible using as few re-manufactured hard-parts as you can. (Rubber and gaskets etc. are obviously OK)

the only thing I would change is to run euro specs low bars, in my experience very few collectors want the bikes with the US spec high-rise bars.

The desmo engine option was first available in 1968 in the Mark 3. This was the first bike to be offered Desmo valves to the public.

In 1970 a scrambler tank was optional on the mark 3. Is your tank roundish or squarish?
 

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Well, it is the correct model and it looks like all the parts are there. The petrol tank may be a problem if it has rusted badly and would be expensive to rechrome, but you could have it sprayed instead. The bike is definitely worth restoring, in fact it would be a crime not to, it all depends on your enthusiasm. If you take it on yourself it will be expensive and very time consuming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Duccout,
I will get more pictures and see if I can talk my father out of the bike this weekend. If I can I will bring it home so we can get a real good look at it.

Thanks for your help!

Ron
 

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Bon Vivant
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The bike is VERY restorable but it will be expensive - maybe more expensive than it is currently worth.

But value is not the question, it MUST be restored or cleaned and left untouched! It's too sought after not to.
If you are not willing to take the job on there are many on this forum who would love to including me. :D

Please, this is not a bike to skimp on the resto, the tank needs to be re-chromed and restored properly along with the rest of the bike.
It would be better to do a super clean-up and not restore it at all than to do a half effort restoration.

It has the proper Mark 3 tank and it does have the US spec high-rise bars. I can just make out the "D"
on the sidecover indicating that it was a Desmo.

I'm glad that you posted it here and if you decide to do it yourself you can get a lot of good information and guidance.

The bike has historical significance beyond its monetary worth. I hope you value that.
Good luck
 

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i would say restore the bike . a 350 mark III Desmo is worth the resto price
i had a 450 Mark III Desmo project standing for years and i realised i never
would finish the project ( i am deep into tuning and racing Ducati singles )
so i sold it to a guy in my town who really wanted it to restore
the project took him about 2 years .


here are some pics

Eldert
 

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I would definately restore this bike as accurately as possible. I restored a basket case 1968 twin filler 250 a few years ago and it was one of the best looking bikes I have seen. When the time came to sell it I got $12,000 AUD straight away.You'll have a lot of enjoyment doing your bike.I may have posted this photobefore but here it is again anyway.
 

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Guys living in the USA are particularly lucky wth 'barn finds'; such a thing is almost non-existent here in the UK. I guess it is because of our population density; someone somewhere would always spot an old bike laid up and tell someone about it.
 

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My 1968 looked pretty much like that. I'm just a backyard mechanic with no special gear or previous experience with Ducatis. Even I managed to make it look like this.







 

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Remery,
you have done a nice job on the Ducati. I have just landed in Perth on my way to look at an SFC750. Great weather too!
Ian
 

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Remery,
you have done a nice job on the Ducati. I have just landed in Perth on my way to look at an SFC750. Great weather too!
Ian
Thank you. I added a couple of pics to the post above showing what it was like when I got it and also the toolbox decals and recovered seat that I added later.

I did the resto about 25 years ago. I paid $275 for the bike and $900 for parts and chrome plating.

Its a gorgeous thing to look at.
 

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Jesus wept!!

I just love these to death, delightful bike.
These are one of my favorite all-time bikes.
Brought back many memories.
Firstly don't pull the engine apart!
lots of Dukes get the engines pulled down and here starts your troubles.
If it runs ok and there is no internal rusting i would run it and see....... at least at first.
Rings will need replacing .

Most bits you can still get , if you search.

Twin cap 3D is in my book the fastest Ducati single ever made, prolly faster than a stock Mach 1 with mega. These suckers really go hard and will pull huge revs,10,500 easy.

PM me if you want bits interchange info?

Capt Fuego
 
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