BMW Motorrad Spezial

Walt Siegl Ducati custom

Ducati SuperSport custom by Walt Siegl
If there’s a middle ground between the reliability of a modern bike and the charisma of a classic motorcycle, it’s occupied by guys like Walt Siegl. Walt is a master craftsman who gives vintage machinery a new lease of life, and if something isn’t quite the way he wants it, he’s got the skills to make it himself in his New Hampshire workshop.

According to Walt, “The owner of this bike already has a couple of late model Ducatis, and wanted another princess from Italy—but with classic curves and low maintenance.” Although this bike looks like a resto-mod to the untutored eye, it’s effectively a ground-up custom. Old school craftsmanship just oozes from every weld. The custom trellis frame is built from 0.65 chrome moly—TIG welded and heat stress relieved—with a 24-degree rake. (The design is based on the iconic bevel frames.) At the front, fully adjustable Showa forks lead to Ducati trees, custom risers and custom bars. At the back, Walt has selected a stock 900SS swing arm and shock body, but fitted an Öhlins spring for better damping. He’s also modified the rear wheel spacing to accommodate a late-model cush drive.

Ducati SuperSport custom by Walt Siegl
The engine is from a 1994 900SS, upgraded from 904 to 944cc with a big bore kit. Performance gets a further boost from 39mm flat slide Mikuni carbs, with custom manifolds and gorgeous polished Gianelli mufflers. The engine covers, painted cases and cylinders are polished to match.

Walt built a custom tank and tail—painted by Nate Weiner—and got the custom seat covered by Kevin Rothe. European Cycle Services supplied a wiring harness, allowing Walt to position the electronics under the tail. Up front are a Motogadget tachometer and a Monster headlight on a custom bracket; at the back is a genuine 70s CEV taillight.

Ducati SuperSport custom by Walt Siegl
If this bike whets your whistle, Walt can build something similar for you: he tells us he’ll be offering “a limited series of air-cooled customs with Ducati engines by spring 2011, similar to this bike.” The price will be in the low 30s; if you have a bit more to spend, you’ll be able to specify an ‘R’ model priced in the low 40s, with carbon fiber bodywork and full Öhlins suspension. Tempted? Check this retro Ducati racebike and radical custom Harley Sportster for more examples of Walt’s work. [Images by Eric Ahlquist.]

Ducati SuperSport custom by Walt Siegl

  • shammatime

    Pardon my French but, F— Yes. That center fin on the cafe rear is so appealing. And fun bars! Gorgeous execution. Very evident master craftsmanship.

  • Rasmus

    Absolutely georgeus, it really hits the perfect balance between classic and modern for me.

    Glad to see Bike exif is back with regular posting!

  • irivas

    All I can say is WOWZERS :)

  • mule

    Super clean build and I love the fat, upswept exhausts! Kinda odd paint job.

  • Wow, that is solid inspiration. Just fun to study.

  • Bald Shaun

    Gorgeous! Classic looks, modern reliability, strong performance, and it probably weighs nothing. I could pick a couple of nits, and list a couple minor things I’d do differently. But what’s the point? This is as close to perfect as any turn key custom I’ve ever seen.

  • sgeechee

    Simply beautiful. Not overdone, not too understated, great work. And although I`m a friend of clip-ons, the bar here works perfectly, and surely improves handling. Very good.

  • I saw this bike in person at the Brooklyn Invitational.. Being one of the few “cafe racer” style bikes there, I spent a lot of time moving around it taking note of things… The craftsmanship is by far a 12 on a scale of 1 to 10. Everything on the bike was well thought out and perfectly executed. Bravo, sir. Bravo.

  • Possible correction….did I see “this” bike at the Invitational or another? The photos I have of the “same” bike have a camel colored leather seat on it.

  • RobL

    Now that is a gorgeous bike! What jumps out is the aesthetic balance front to rear, the smooth flow of line from one end to the next just leads the eye over and around all the curves and naughty bits.

    Beautiful photography as well. This is what BikeEXIF is all about.

  • Tim Hanna

    Pure, breathtaking perfection!

  • Leston

    BIKEEXIF, you just redeemed yourself from the previous Yamaha post.

    this is a stunningly clean, sexy, simple, exotic.
    just damned delicious

  • Harry Farquhar

    Pure sex on 2 wheels.

  • Swagger

    What a nice special! Can someone tell me what brand/model those tires are?

  • hoyt

    Swagger – a Ducati dealership should carry those tires as they were part of the Sport Classic line.

    Great bike. It must sound mighty too. Thanks for the info.

  • WillyP

    Sweet! It’s even got a front fender!

  • go_big

    Ah yes….bikeexif, welcome back as my default homepage setting, THIS is the kind of tasty treat we rely on you for. The clean lines of that classic style bodywork, frame and bars straddling the raw detail of the motor is to die for.

    I’d trade a left “body part” for one of these anyday !

  • KIK

    pure sweetness,…bike exif you have done well again..

  • cliffhanger

    WOW… That tank makes me sWEaT… off the charts build in every category

  • Oliver

    As close to perfect as possible! Must be a blast to ride, and it’s a real piece of art, too – I find it really hard to take my eyes off

  • el vencejo

    Beautiful… Great looks on a really practical bike!
    Very European styling.

  • Wildan

    Simple & clean, it’s damn good bike!!!!

  • w

    Bikeexif back on form

  • Anton 3000

    That’s it! I’m taking BikeExif out of my bookmarks!
    This bike’s dumb. I could make a better one. I don’t like blue! This is not BikeExif material! Those mufflers are too shiny! etc! etc!

    enough of that… it looks awesome! :)

  • Pete

    @Swagger, Pirelli Phantom Sportcomps.
    Really nice bike, well finished.
    A minor correction, springs do not control damping.

  • AlwaysOnTwo

    Perfect EXCEPT…. why use a common trailer light at the rear?? A Ferrari with a Pinto hatchback door. Heat wrap some red lexan formed to that seat. Oh, I know, he left that for me to customize and make it personal. Wish I had an extra $30K to make his effort appreciated.

  • steve

    I like it, really nice. One thing I always think when I see those covers for the cam belts is there must be something that can be done to integrate them into the design better, so they don’t look like an afterthought.

  • arjunkul

    Heartbreakingly beautiful!!! love every inch of it.

  • Bo knows

    I’m with Leston, great recovery after that SR500!!!! THIS is craftsmanship!

  • I honestly dont understand the animosity towards the sr500. That thing was just oozing style just as this bike is. Just two different styles with completely different personalities. Bike exif is about the good photography and documentation of these bikes. Keep up the good work chris, both of the last bikes, to me, were pure sex.

  • cap’n

    Quite possibly the best bike I’ve ever seen here. Gorgeous. I’ll take 2 please.

  • Mule

    Mike, I can’t help myself here.

    “Both of the last bikes were, to me, pure sex.”

    For some reason I can’t see the cover of the new Cycle World with a picture of the dented tank SR and the heading “Pure Sex”. They said that when the Ducati 916 was first released and although I don’t really make the sex connection with bikes, unless it helps you get laid, a 916 did look unreal!

    The dented SR is more like “Rosanne Barr” when she was 90 lbs overweight with her teeth taken out being called “Smokin’ hot!”

  • Jessica

    How does a bike like this go for? And if they’re being sold, where can I findone?

  • Tedsemail

    Rings my chimes! This is very well done, and just the way I like it.