Naked Ducati 1098 Reader Ride

November 26, 2008
When the Ducati Streetfighter debuted earlier this month at the Milan Bike Show, one Motorcycle USA reader thought – Hey, that looks familiar! John Martin of Brisbane, Australia emailed us a picture of his own Ducati “streetfighter” – a stripped down 1098. Intrigued by the project, we asked John for a follow up on his sharp looking ride.

This is my 65th road bike, had a few, so when I was looking for a new bike I had a good idea of what I wanted.

Naked Ducati 10982009 Ducati Streetfighter
Check out John Martin’s ‘streetfighter’ above and the official Ducati Streetfigher below. Martin’s ride is a stripped down, modified stock 1098.

I decided that I wanted a Twin after just coming off a KTM 950 SM. The Twin seemed to work for me but I needed something with a bit more GRUNT. I was also looking for something that was an upright seating position, everything I rode was let down by either a lack of power or cheap suspension bits. The Ducati was an obvious choice, but the only one with all the good bits was the 1098. I purchased one on the sole intention to strip it down and make it a comfortable street bike.

After bringing it home and admiring the undeniable beauty that Ducati had produced, I struggled to convince myself to remove all that beautiful Ducati artwork. I rode the 1098 in standard form for about a week and quickly understood why I was looking for a bike with an upright seating position. After the chiropractor repaired my wrists, neck and back, I got to work and removed the fairing and bits.

The first thing I had trouble with was how to connect the bars to the pointy end. I started looking on Ebay for parts and found a triple clamp of a 999. Wasn’t sure that it would fit, but I took a gamble, the gamble paid off. The triple clamp fitted perfectly. As the 999 has large holes in the middle, I machined aluminum plates top and bottom and bolted the risers and bars on.

I then had to work out how to mount a headlight and dash assembly. I found a bike wrecker who had a headlight assembly hanging on the wall, I found out later that it is from a Peugeot scooter. The whole assembly is mounted on one bar across the front using the original handle bar mounts.

The suspension was very hard and non compliant, so I removed all and sent it to a local guy. It took me a long time to set up the suspension, removing the weight off the front would normally mean pushing the forks through to compensate, but all that did was reduce the amount of rake the bike had, finally I found the right ride height and now I have trouble keeping up with replacing toe sliders.

I removed and gutted the exhaust cans and fitted 50mm perf tube, exactly the same as the manufacture’s do but at a faction of the cost, the sound is awesome. The bike was having a bit of trouble on/off throttle in the corners, so I replaced the stock computer with a Ducati Race computer. This fixed the problem but also increased the power output, something I didn’t need. This bike will do power stands at 120mph in 4th gear, and pull out of corners smoking the Bridgestone 002’s, a bit silly!

I like the look of the new Streetfighter but I am worried it may be a bit docile after the 1098. The first thing to go if I bought one would be the mirrors.

Kind Regards

John Martin
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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