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Featured Project 999

Discussion in 'Builds & Projects' started by Nasher, Sep 13, 2021.

  1. Last Thursday I collected my latest project from a fellow forum member.
    A 2005 MkII Ducati 999. Believed to be a Biposto ‘S’ Variant.
    I’ve been looking for a project 999 for ages, and had given up, but isn’t that always the way.

    It was good to meet you @matapaca, I’m really pleased with it.

    It joined my M1000 and 1000SS/900SL in my workshop, and the various loose parts have been stored.


    It started and ticked over OK when I collected it, but I won’t be starting it again until I change the belts, Oil and filters.

    The overall aim is to produce a bike I can enjoy rebuilding, tinkering with, and using on the road.
    I don’t want a spotless, perfect cosmetically bike that I’m afraid to use, but it must be mechanically as good as I can get it.
    Importantly it’s my first ‘modern generation’ Ducati with twin cams, water cooling etc, so I’m going to learn a lot.
    For example I can change the cambelts on my 2-valve aircooled bikes easily in under an hour, but haven’t done a 4 valve twin Cam Ducati, so I’m looking forward to that – yes really.

    I spent Friday afternoon going all over it, measuring everything to ensure it’s straight, which I’m pleased to say it is, and assessing the damage, wear and tear, and general condition of it.

    At this stage, a huge disclaimer:
    Anything I mention about the condition of the bike is NOT intended as any sort of slur or derogatory comment about the vendor. I knew I was buying a previously dropped, partially dismantled bike which hadn’t been used for quite some time.
    I’d seen plenty of images, and knew there would be additional damage and wear and tear that I’d not seen in the images.
    We agreed a fair price, which I’m still happy with after fully assessing the bike.

    Before I go any further, I’m sure everyone will be pleased that Johnny 5 is still alive and well.

    Now that’s out of my system, I’ll try not to mention it again.
    #1 Nasher, Sep 13, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2021
    • Like Like x 13
  2. Firstly a rundown of the good bits.

    It’s a largely original MkII 999.
    I’ve wanted one for so long and never thought I’d own one when prices started going up.

    It’s straight.
    I spent quite a while setting it up on my bench with two straight edges, compared lots of measurements side to side, and have come to the conclusion it’s straight, even the subframe isn’t too far out, it just needs a very small tweak, if I can be bothered.

    An Ohlins rear shock is fitted, but from research I can’t say for sure if it’s been retrofitted or came as part of the ‘S’ package.
    I will need to assess it for condition properly, but on a quick bounce test it didn’t feel too bad.
    An adjustable aftermarket Rear suspension link has also been fitted which is in good condition

    It has the MkII Welded Black Swingarm.
    Not only is it a much better looking item than the original cast MkI version, it’s apparently better at staying stiffer for longer which helps it to be a better Swinger!


    It has the Deep Sump crankcases.

    The Tank has very little damage to the paint, and as far as I can tell at this stage is not corroded internally.
    The two small marks in the paint I believe I can take out without resorting to a complete respray.


    All 3 discs are within tolerance.
    #2 Nasher, Sep 13, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2021
    • Like Like x 4
  3. And on to the bad bits:
    Which is unfortunately a longer list, and there were a couple of surprises I’d not seen in the images.

    It’s very Dirty with road grime etc, plus the chain has been kept very well lubricated which has attracted the usual associated build-up of crud from the front sprocket backwards on the LHS.
    Obviously this is very easy to deal with, especially as I’ll be having the swingarm out at some stage anyway.

    Oil leak
    There is an oil leak which appears to be somewhere behind the Cambelt covers on the vertical cylinder, which I hope isn’t too serious or involved to put right.
    I first found it when I noticed Oil dripping off the RHS footrest mount.

    Front End
    Both Lockstop lugs are broken off the bottom yoke.
    This I hadn’t seen, and it will mean a replacement, but I’m going to change the headstock bearings anyway so it was going to have to come out regardless.
    I’ll be modifying the new one to include a hole under the stem to enable me to use a headstock front stand.

    Both Fork seals are leaking so they need a rebuild.
    And looking at the Gold coating I may find the bushes need replacing too.


    And the Front wheel spindle is damaged on the end.
    I’m hoping the nut comes off OK

    Both front master cylinder caps are Corroded and will probably get replaced rather than refurbished, but I believe Sev has a kit to change them to remote reservoirs that he’d like to persuade me to purchase.


    I’ve not completely decided on what to do about the front end yet, I’d love to go Ohlins on it, which would require a new bottom yoke anyway, and give me Radial Brakes, but I think it will be beyond my budget.
    I might go with 848/1098 radial forks which can use a 999 Bottom Yoke.
    Or I could rebuild the existing Forks and Brakes, which are dragging anyway.

    So a decision on a route for the front end is critical.
    #3 Nasher, Sep 13, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2021
    • Like Like x 6
  4. Every Body Panel is damaged to one extent or another, except the replacement seat plastics which were sourced by the previous owner.
    I’m going to keep an eye out for good condition replacements at this stage.

    The Headlamp Bracket is Corroded in several places, so I’ll have it stripped and powdercoated, unless I find one that’s already been done.

    The Speedo screen is cracked/crazed, but I’ve checked that the moulding comes apart and am reasonably confident that I will be able to cut out the original clear element of the two-shot moulding and replace it to a good standard.

    The Gear lever is Bent, but there is a replacement included in the box of spares supplied with the bike.

    The Rear brake lever is slightly bent. I might try to straighten it, but will look for a replacement

    The Left Clip-on is damaged which I’ll replace.

    There is lots of Engine paint coming off in several places. I might try patching it in, but as I don’t want to take the frame off the engine unless I really have to, I might just live with it.
    Both my M1000 and 1000SS/900SL have the same issue which I’m living with.


    The Radiator is corroded externally, I’ll keep an eye out for a replacement, but will probably just whip it off and repaint it.
    I also want to flush the coolant system and will probably replace the hoses at the same time.


    The side Stand is awful, very floppy, and when I tried it without a block of wood under the foot the bike was genuinely right at the point of falling over.
    I’ve stripped it down already, machined a new spacer, and tapped a hole in the arm for a stop bolt, but have yet to find out if that’s done the trick.
    I’m not sure if the bracket is bent. The main mounting bolt nearest to the pivot can’t come out of it’s recessed hole as the riveted in pin for the spring plate is in the way, but I don’t know if that is standard.

    The Underseat plastics are missing, but I’ve already found some on EBAY

    The Hugger and chain guard are missing which I’ll need to source.
    #4 Nasher, Sep 13, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2021
    • Like Like x 4
  5. Other plans at the moment that don’t involve any repair or rectification work are:

    Clean it, involving dismantling it a lot more

    Move troublesome relay from behind battery box

    Explore Monoposto options

    Explore Exhaust end can options.

    And so it’s up on my bench and the fun starts

    Or rather it doesn't!
    I've a couple of small projects to finish in the house, and really need to do some more work on my boat whilst the weather is still good enough to work outside.
    But I'm going to start collecting parts, and will do some research into which way to go with a couple of aspects.

    Watch this space.

    • Like Like x 9
  6. All this lot, as well as the main side fairings, came with it:

    • Like Like x 3
  7. Nice project. You can machine your lower triple clamp. and put some excentric lock stops.

    • Like Like x 7
  8. Thanks Mrfurry, that's a good option.
  9. I forgot to add that the Paddock stand bobbin on the Right hand side of the swingarm had been ripped off:

    The thread is stripped for the first few mm and the boss is ground away at a small angle.
    It must have only been held on by a few threads in the first place, and it was lucky the thread stripped instead of the boss breaking away.

    Luckily the thread wasn't damaged further down the hole, so as can be seen from the images I've used a pair Bobbins I had hanging around and longer bolts.
    • Like Like x 3
  10. excellent watching with interest. i have a 749 track bike that is being tinkered with as we speak before it goes away for someone more competent than me to tinker with
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Fuck. Hope it t was cheap!
  12. not as cheap as the flatpack ikea 999 I offered him... :joy:
    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  13. You mean the one you beat me to because I couldn't get the mods on that site to approve my membership quick enough:)

    I'm happy with this one for what I paid for it.

    Thanks for all the likes everyone.
    • Like Like x 2
  14. Nope the one in bits that needs even its engine building that i was going to let go for 800 quid! Full fat airfix build :joy:
    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  15. It's a base model.
  16. Thanks Jusutus, I'm OK with that.

    But perhaps you'd like to enlighten me why that's the case?

    #16 Nasher, Sep 14, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2021
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  17. Looking forward to this, best of luck with it (I know you don't need it!)
  18. No Öhlins forks or steering damper.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. Has anyone actually purchased a set of Ebay Chinese bodywork for a 749/999?
    Or indeed any other Ducati?

    Can anyone recommend a particular vendor?
  20. I'm pretty sure I mentioned that I had a whole complte bike chinese fairing set in my shed.
    I must have been dreaming.

    Sweet mother of god you people are hard work sometimes!!
    • Funny Funny x 1
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