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HOME/Ducati 900 Super Sport (1977)

21 October 2016 by Harm Heuvelman

Now here’s a great opportunity: the 1977 Ducati 900 Super Sport we restored recently (restoration #44) is for sale! A fully restored and highly original example of one of the best Ducati’s ever made.

Model year 1977 marked a bit of intermediate period for Ducati. After the very small range of Super Sports (750 and 900) built in 1975, Ducati decided to take the Super Sport models into regular production in 1976. Of course this meant that it needed to be homologated and especially the US regulations were quite far from the 1975 model.

The biggest design change had to be made to the gear change mechanism as US regulations finally required left side gear change whereas the bevel twin engine was designed for right side gear change. Ducati came up with a cross-over shaft behind the gearbox, at first with a rather indirect gear lever pivoting a shaft and with rubber foot pegs. This was later changed to steel foot pegs and a much more direct functioning gear lever fitted to a shaft with a fixed pin. Other changes compared to the 1975 included a slightly revised frame and a steel fuel tank among some smaller updates.

Initially the 1976/77 Super Sport models had many electrical components supplied by Aprilia but the L.H. switch and headlight were later replaced by CEV items. This change coincided with a new 5-light dashboard with an incorporated ignitions switch rather than on the left side of the frame under the seat.

This particular 1977 Ducati 900 Super Sport looks like a bit of an anomaly at first but after a lot of research we can only conclude that it is 100% original. It was brought to us by a long-standing client from Sweden where the bike also was originally registered in 1977 with papers to prove it. It looked however that the foot peg arrangement and the CEV components where from a later model but given the originality of the components and the way they were mounted (like the brackets welded to the frame) strongly suggested they were original.

Another surprise was when we opened the crankcases with the factory seal still in place: inside was a ‘early’ crankshaft with 46mm con-rods, 36mm pin and 5mm bearing rollers but with Super Sport style ‘double web’ con-rods! This arrangement is associated with earlier models. This bike is again proof for us that there is no way to be 100% sure about the exact specifications Ducati used for their bikes in the 1970’s. We are however 100% about this bike’s originality.

This 900 Super Sport was registered in Sweden in 1977. It was painted red, probably very early on in its life but was further kept in original condition. Only in 2014 it was sold to our client who decided to have it restored by us. We started out with fully dismantling the bike as it was known it had been sitting in a garage for more than 15 years. Many parts were in very good condition and could be re-used in the restoration like the wiring loom, headlight, wheels (that still have the original painted spokes) etc.

The engine was fully rebuilt to very high standards; a new big-end pin was fitted and the crankshaft newly aligned. The engine cases were aqua blasted, the gearbox was fully inspected and rebuilt, new Pistal pistons were fitted, valve guides replaced and seats were machined and grinded to fit new valves. Of course a full record of this restoration is available.

The bike was further fully re-painted to its original paint scheme and many parts newly chromed and polished. The bike was run-in and tested and we adjusted it on a dyna (a full record of this is available as well). It was finally delivered to our client early 2016 and has done about 2000km since.

Our client is selling this bike to finance for another project. As we know how rare these bikes are, especially in this condition, this is a golden opportunity if you are looking for a 900 Super Sport. The bike comes with its original Swedish registration, a dual as well as a single seat and original Marzocchi shock absorbers as well as a set of IKON shocks (fitted). We know all about this bike, up until its last screw so please don’t hesitate to contact us for further information. We can provide quotes for shipping to locations worldwide.

Tags: 900 SS, Concours, Nut-and-Bolt Restoration

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