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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
A few weeks ago I got serious about acquiring a square-case 900SS and started searching. An ad in the classifieds here on ms gave me one good lead but I found a few more bikes by scouring the internet, most were way out of my price range at around $40,000! Out of the blue I got an email from a guy in England who visited my website and we started exchanging emails for a few days. He told me of an 82 that was available from a collector in Nashville. I talked with the guy in Nashville a few times and we came to a price that we could both live with, Last Wednesday Candie and I drove out there and picked up the bike.



He was starting to sell off most of his bike collection but he still has a room full of rare and desirable Italian singles





The bike I bought from him was his last twin and one that was in the process of being restored but it seems that he lost interest in finishing it about 12 years ago and it has been siting since then.

The bike looks really clean with untouched supple wiring (or possibly an NOS wiring harness, he told me that he got a bunch of NOS parts for it in Germany a few years back). Most of the bike is together and it is very complete. He changed a few things from original, the biggest being the single seat from an earlier bike, Luckily he used an original Ducati single seat and not an aftermarket part, the original Ducati stuff is very robust. He also installed a set of cool period correct Koni shocks, unfortunately they are way too short and the rear squats too much for my taste so I will be changing these out. He also used an earlier style Conti muffler that I may or may not change for the correct ones, the only difference is a detail in the mounting bracket.. It looks to me like it has the original tank, fenders, fairing, and side covers., none of which were installed on the bike.

His intent was to paint the bike black and he insisted that markets outside of North America got black bikes in 1982. Ian Falloon's book on the supersports does not agree. In any case I'm going to paint the bike silver and use the correct style decals for an 82. I will keep the single seat conversion because the dual seat that came on the 82 was horific. Everything else will be as close to original as possible and according to Falloon that leaves a pretty wide choice of parts as the 82's were notoriously inconsistant, in fact I think he stated that no 2 were alike haha.

I know that 1982 was the least favorite bike for SS enthusiasts but I decided to go with this bike for a couple of reasons, the first was the amazing job that Robax has done on his bike and the build thread and photos that he has posted here on the forum. His build and the finished product is truly inspiring. Another reason is the rarity of the 82, at only 335 sold worldwide it is second only to the 1975 900 in fewest produced. I like that it is a very rare machine.
 

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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #2
Over the last few days I've been PM'ing back and forth with Robax and he has been a world of knowledge. I'm sure I'll keep picking his brain as he's spent the last 4 years making his bike perfect and like me he has made a few choice changes but kept the bike true to its roots and its original intent.

There are a few changes that almost every owner has made with these bikes and those changes, namely the exhaust and carbs, were in keeping with the original concept way back in 1972. The latest bikes from about 1980 switched to 32 mm carbs and silentium or Lafranconi exhausts. The big carbs and Contis were an option installed at dealerships in some markets so it is fair to say that any of these bikes could have been equipped that way from new. My bike does have the big 40mm Delortos and a pair of original early style Conti pipes.

The PO started the paint job on all of the body work so I assumed that it would all just bolt back on. But I've been fitting the parts and it seems like these parts have never been mounted on the bike. I had assumed that most of the bodywork was original to the bike but I really dont know. All of the parts should be fiberglass except the front fender which is ABS and that is what I have. I do have round fenders and most of the 82's had flat fenders but you cant argue one way or the other because of the manufacturing variations. I have no reason to believe these are not the originals.

I did have to do some adjusting on the seat base to get it to fit with the rubber trim in place, and I had to tweak the side cover brackets to make things line up and fit, again, once the rubber trim was installed. The fairing bolted up beautifully. I still have to trail fit the fenders just to be sure before I do any paintwork.










 

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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #3
This afternoon I installed the fenders and they fit perfectly. Everything is adjusted and I have all of my hardware, now I can feel confident going forward with the paint job. But before that the next step is to finish installing the regulator and check over the electrical system and then get the bike running.




All of the lights, turn signals etc are mounted on the bike and wiring is straight forward.


 

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A great buy! Looks like all the tedious work has been done. I couldn't get that far and not finish it. Bodywork fit looks very good and the gold colour seems right. Also glad to hear that you are going original as possible. I suppose that this model had the lousy Paoli plastic taps. Cheers
Ian
 

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Bon Vivant
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10,216 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
A great buy! Looks like all the tedious work has been done. I couldn't get that far and not finish it. Bodywork fit looks very good and the gold colour seems right. Also glad to hear that you are going original as possible. I suppose that this model had the lousy Paoli plastic taps. Cheers
Ian

Yeah it is and I think I have a set of NOS. Should I change them?

Also the contis are new and have never been run, I would consider trading them for a new pair of the later style 3 dimple Contis if anyone has them wants the early style.
 

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If the taps are original and OK I would leave them even though I don't like them. Something I will have to look up is whether or not the 3 dimple Contis had different headers to the earlier Contis ? Cheers
Ian
 

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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #10
Something I will have to look up is whether or not the 3 dimple Contis had different headers to the earlier Contis ? Cheers
Ian

Ive seen them interchanged, I've always assumed they are the same but I dont know that with certainty. If I end up leaving these on the bike I won't loose any sleep over it. :wink2:
 

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I'm sure that the headers are the same. If I'm not mistaken, the right side header is always the same but the left side is either curved down immediately (no e-start) or sticks out first then curves down (e-start models). They both look OK to me.
 

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I would keep it as it is, it looks great to me. I think that the three dimple Contis had different pipes, because the bracket is longer, so that the silencers sit lower down, due to the bikes originally being fitted with big Silentium or LaFranconi silencers.
 

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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #15
So it looks like there's a slight difference between e-start pipes and the kick start version but in the end the mufflers will bolt up and fit on either. I think the 3 dimple bracket is sort of iconic on the square case SS's and would love to have the correct look but as Duccout says these look great too and it would be fine to keep it as is.
 

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Countries divided by a common language. Maybe we can call it 'dialect'?

If you look at pictures of bikes with the three dimples sideways on, the Contis are at an angle to the pillion footrest brackets, but the early Contis are almost parallel to the bracket.
 

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Looking at the older, less angled Contis, what a dumb design; the silencers blocked the path of the rear wheel bolt. The left side header for this older style is missing a bend at the very end, under the motor. This is what points the crossover and therefore the silencers up on the later design.
 

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Bon Vivant
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10,216 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Looking at the older, less angled Contis, what a dumb design; the silencers blocked the path of the rear wheel bolt. The left side header for this older style is missing a bend at the very end, under the motor. This is what points the crossover and therefore the silencers up on the later design.
I dont see that, this is the older design and it clearly does not block the axle.





Here is the later design:





They pretty much look the same to me
 

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Bon Vivant
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Discussion Starter #20
I had pre-oiled the cylinders for a couple of days, yesterday we did a compression test and all is good. I picked up a battery and installed the regulator today. Looks like the wiring is pretty close but I still have a few things to sort. I kicked-er over and got spark on both plugs, tomorrow I'll rig up a hopper tank and see if I can get it started.
 
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