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I apologize in advance for a lack of pictures. I lack the patience to stop what I am doing to snap a pic, and usually completely forget to grab one after a bit of work is done.

Last fall I picked up a somewhat tired and neglected '99 900SS. At some point in it's life it had been loved, the bike was fitted with (rusty and worn out) braketech axis rotors, some trick adjustable rear sets, DP carbon clutch cover, 5-spoke rear wheel, and some (completely trashed) 2bros slip-ons. Originally the plan was to simply repair/replace the worn out stuff and just ride the bike. Things didn't exactly go as planned... the wife test rode the bike, decided she didn't really like it too much, and then the more i tore in to the bike the more problems i found. After calling braketech I found out the rotors were shot. The trick rearsets had been damaged in a previous crash. In fact, it looks like a PO at some point went down a bit hard on the left hand side of the bike.

the rearset was cracked:


the stator cover had been ground through, then welded back together. unfortunately the outboard bearing in the stator cover was no longer sitting perfectly true, and munched itself at somepoint. thankfully the steel balls stayed in the stator/flywheel area and didn't find their way in to the rest of the engine, otherwise it probably would have been destroyed.



At this point I remembered a couple years ago seeing the leggero on bikeexif. I showed some pictures to the boss, and she liked the looks a lot more than the "terblah" 900ss look. Eventually we decided that doing a build of the leggero could be a fun project. emails were exchanged with WSM, and last night this bit of welded steel arrived on my door step:



While waiting for the frame to be built, I tore down the engine completely with the plan to do a very simple refresh and repaint. I didn't realize until it was too late that a "simple refresh" of this motor means more than $1000 once all the bearings and seals are sourced. That is basically where I am at now. The motor is in pieces and I need to decide whether or not to hot tank the cases/cylinders/heads before painting. I have been using a media blast cabinet and some stripper to remove old paint and corrosion, and need to be sure all the media is cleaned out before reassembly.

One more picture, this is some of bits and pieces I've been buying and/or repainting as time and money allow.

 

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and I thought I was the only one who contact Walt for a frame too.. let alone in California as well.. haha.

I got my frame on Saturday. =)
 

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Walt Siegl

I was at Walt's shop last September and was talking to him about a frame/tank/seat kit. I haven't pulled the trigger on that project yet, but I probably will in the future.

Situated in the countryside of New Hampshire, Walt's workshop is very old school. He makes a lot of the parts himself or has trusted outside suppliers provide quality parts. I met Bruce Meyers there the day I visited. He apparently does some engines for the Leggero series.

We talked about all things Ducati and Walt told me a little about his background, etc. Bruce and I got along as we are both engine guys.

I'll be following this thread with interest.
 

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Oh lord Walt is a legend! Few builders, if any, can have a bike shown on BikeExif or PipeBurn with nearly universal acclaim in the comments, a true master craftsman!

Please more pics, would love to see that work of art frame up close, and enjoy watching builds come along.
 

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Awesome choice Marty those WSM Leggero's are over the top cool. So light and airy looking with all the parts a bike needs and nothing it doesn't.

There's so many different ways you can configure that bike and they all come out looking good. Definitely be watching this build with interest to see what you come up with. Have at 'er man! :yeah:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I was at Walt's shop last September and was talking to him about a frame/tank/seat kit. I haven't pulled the trigger on that project yet, but I probably will in the future.

Situated in the countryside of New Hampshire, Walt's workshop is very old school. He makes a lot of the parts himself or has trusted outside suppliers provide quality parts. I met Bruce Meyers there the day I visited. He apparently does some engines for the Leggero series.

We talked about all things Ducati and Walt told me a little about his background, etc. Bruce and I got along as we are both engine guys.

I'll be following this thread with interest.
Cool experience. My conversations with Walt over the phone have been pleasant and were what clinched the deal for me.

Being an engine guy, maybe you can give me some advice on how to handle my rebuild. I have the engine completely torn down, and am currently trying to figure out what to do with the case halves and side covers. I've been stripping the paint and media blasting some of the surfaces with both walnut and glass bead. I now need to figure out the best route for cleaning all the debris out of the components. I would like to think that warm, soapy water and a good scrub/spray will remove all the blast media, however I am not sure and don't have any experience with this. Can I clean all this crap out successfully myself, or should I take the parts to get cleaned by a shop with a hot tank?
 

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Cool experience. My conversations with Walt over the phone have been pleasant and were what clinched the deal for me.

Being an engine guy, maybe you can give me some advice on how to handle my rebuild. I have the engine completely torn down, and am currently trying to figure out what to do with the case halves and side covers. I've been stripping the paint and media blasting some of the surfaces with both walnut and glass bead. I now need to figure out the best route for cleaning all the debris out of the components. I would like to think that warm, soapy water and a good scrub/spray will remove all the blast media, however I am not sure and don't have any experience with this. Can I clean all this crap out successfully myself, or should I take the parts to get cleaned by a shop with a hot tank?
Regarding the cleaning of your cases, I would be sure to clean out all of the oil passages thoroughly as glass bead can accumulate there. In my opinion, it is better to blast engine cases with walnut shells or soda and not glass bead. Small pieces of the glass bead can become embedded in the aluminum and then come loose at an inopportune time. The same for the cylinder heads.

Technically, you shouldn't be blasting the areas of the case where precision machining has been done (bearing/seal seats, etc.). These should be masked off. Using glass bead on the parts that don't touch oil is ok (outside of cases for example).

You should be ok if you clean them, but having it professionaly done is a good option.

Walt is a rare individual who can completely customize a Ducati and have it look better when he is done.
 

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Regarding the cleaning of your cases, I would be sure to clean out all of the oil passages thoroughly as glass bead can accumulate there. In my opinion, it is better to blast engine cases with walnut shells or soda and not glass bead. Small pieces of the glass bead can become embedded in the aluminum and then come loose at an inopportune time. The same for the cylinder heads.

Technically, you shouldn't be blasting the areas of the case where precision machining has been done (bearing/seal seats, etc.). These should be masked off. Using glass bead on the parts that don't touch oil is ok (outside of cases for example).

You should be ok if you clean them, but having it professionaly done is a good option.

Walt is a rare individual who can completely customize a Ducati and have it look better when he is done.
+1 on that last comment. I totally lust after the Leggeros and think they are SS perfection! Following this thread with great interest.

On the media blasting front, I've had experience with walnut and have seen others use soda and I wouldn't use either again. Ducati castings can be pretty porous and even walnut is almost too abrasive.

I haven't used it personally but to my mind only Vapor Honing would give a result that I could be happy with in the future. And what a result. Brings engine cases up like new.
 

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I plan to have my '93 motor blasted soon and I'll likely go with vapor blasting. There's a place close to me that advertises their work on Ducati motors. Looks good.
 

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+1 on that last comment. I totally lust after the Leggeros and think they are SS perfection! Following this thread with great interest.

On the media blasting front, I've had experience with walnut and have seen others use soda and I wouldn't use either again. Ducati castings can be pretty porous and even walnut is almost too abrasive.

I haven't used it personally but to my mind only Vapor Honing would give a result that I could be happy with in the future. And what a result. Brings engine cases up like new.
My understanding of vapor blasting (or honing) is that it is a finishing process for appearance and not a cleaning process by itself. The process is as follows; the part is first cleaned, then abrasive blasted (glass bead, soda, etc.) and finally vapor blasted to seal the surface and improve the finished look.

Based on that information, vapor blasting by itself isn't enough to clean the part, but is a final part of a process.
 

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I strip the cases bare of all bearings 100%. Then have them chemically stripped. Next I bolt the halves together and make plates to seal of all the openings, like the covers and cylinders. Then all holes are plugged. This keeps the media out. Then, I smooth the cases of all seams with cartridge rolls. Now they get blasted with a 36 grit shot, then glass bead to brighten the finish. Last is a tumble in a rock mixture that burnished the cases and seals the pores. Looks old school and cleans up great. Finally remove all plugs and plates, and power wash them with lots of laundry soap and water mixture. Blow them dry, and repeat 2 more times. Then all new bearings installed. This is not an easy job to do right.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I strip the cases bare of all bearings 100%. Then have them chemically stripped. Next I bolt the halves together and make plates to seal of all the openings, like the covers and cylinders. Then all holes are plugged. This keeps the media out. Then, I smooth the cases of all seams with cartridge rolls. Now they get blasted with a 36 grit shot, then glass bead to brighten the finish. Last is a tumble in a rock mixture that burnished the cases and seals the pores. Looks old school and cleans up great. Finally remove all plugs and plates, and power wash them with lots of laundry soap and water mixture. Blow them dry, and repeat 2 more times. Then all new bearings installed. This is not an easy job to do right.
that sounds like the "most correct" way of doing it. unfortunately I'm past the point of being able to do that, as i started blasting individual case pieces after stripping all the bearings out. I've been using contact paper as a mask for the machined surfaces and it has been working out well - i'm using both fine glass bead and fine walnut shell, at pressures in the 50-60psi range, so not very aggressive.

i think i'l pick up a power washer, I've been looking for a reason to buy one.

any of you socal/SD folks know a good place to get the frame painted? I'm thinking of going with polyurethane with a hardener rather than powder coating. I'd like to get this done sooner than later to prevent corrosion.
 

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I think Tony Markus at T Markus Designs in the L.A. area does nice paint work. Never had anything done myself, but he is recommended by others and his work looks great.
 
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