Union Motorcycle Classics is the kind of shop we love to hear about. It’s based in a 100-year-old barn in the 19th century railroad town of Nampa, Idaho, where Mike Watanabe and Luke Ransom fettle and restore classic British and European machinery.
This recent build is giving us a serious case of envy. It’s Ducati Monza Super belonging to Kurt Bergquist—a man of impeccable taste who uses a 1969 VW Double Cab Pick-up to transport his bikes.
“The Ducati arrived incomplete, in boxes,” Mike recalls. “Kurt had bought a Ducati Scrambler, and he got the Monza with it as a spares bike.”
The stock Monza is not the prettiest of bikes, with a bulbous tank and bread loaf seat. So Mike and Luke started from scratch, shaping a racy new seat and fiberglass fairing and tank. The tank is reminiscent of the classic Ducati 750 Sport unit: if you like it, you can get a replica from the bodywork supplier Glass From The Past.
The elegant exhaust piping is hand-made too, flowing seamlessly into a classic reverse cone muffler.
The front end is completely custom, built using parts from several orphaned forks that were lying around the shop. After freshening up the motor and wheels with new parts, it was time for the paint and polish.
“It took a while to convince Kurt that gold would work,” says Mike. “But hey, it’s not red, is it?” We reckon it looks just perfect.
“He originally dropped the Ducati off with it. We thought it was only fitting that he pick it up in the same rig.”
If you’re within range of the northwestern US, it’s worth paying Union Motorcycle a visit. Especially if you’re into old British iron: the next build is going to be a pre-War Norton.
Just make sure you leave your checkbook at home.