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Old 11-18-2009, 10:08 PM   #1
DesmoDog OP
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1966 Ducati 250 Monza project

Let me introduce my 1966 Ducati 250 Monza, the other part of a package deal with the '66 160 Monza Jr I started a thread about already. I picked them both up a few years ago and until recently have pretty much just been collecting parts for this one. I'm just starting the build so it will be more "real time" than my other two project threads. Judging by past experience I'm afraid this thread could go on for years...

Here's how it looked in the ad;




This is the bike I envisioned building out of it;


I got the tank, fenders, and toolboxes while I was building my 160. But then the plan changed for my 160 and I decided to build something more along the lines of a Mach 1 out of the 250. I had traded away my first Mach 1 gas tank so I bought another one off of eBay. The first tank was in fantastic shape. The second one, not so much. Aside from the cut off flanges up front, it looks ok, right?


Until you flip it over anyway. Someone obviously tried fitting it to a non-Ducati frame with the aid of a hammer. Ouch.


I put it away and tried to gather courage while I distracted myself collecting other parts. At some point I decided I wanted to upgrade the bike. Bigger engine, better forks, better front brake... while searching for a good deal on a Grimeca I ran across a deal on something a little tastier. I had picked up some flanged alloy wheels from a guy I met at Mid-Ohio, and ordered some stainless spokes from Buchanan's to build this;


I would have gone with Excel rims but these were a good deal and I was assured they'd fit a stock Ducati hub. And maybe they do. But they don't fit an Oldani replica brake which looks (as in I get the same dimensions when I measure them) to me to be the same size as the stock Ducati part! Grrr... so much for saving money. The spoke holes are just a tad too far off to "tweak" to make work, I'll be buying Excels for it after all.

Over the past couple years I had been stealing parts off the 250 to use on a couple other projects I have. By this time last year it was a true basket case. Seeing it all torn apart made me more serious about finalizing plans for it. I sourced an engine out of a 350 Sebring, along with some 35mm Pantah forks (that I've since decided not to use). With the forks, brake, and engine worked out it was time to start mocking it up.

I looked at the tank again. After my failed attempt at saving a tank for my 160, I had to admit to myself I didn't have it in me to save this one either. What to do, what to do... Then I saw this, a 250 that fellow Bevelhead Ken Reece put together. By coincidence it even used the same front hub that I have.


I loved it. I got in touch with Ken and he confirmed it was sporting bodywork by Evan Wilcox.

A little background - quite a few years ago I spent some time at Evan's shop and liked his work so much I seriously considered buying another bike just so I could buy some of his bodywork. It became one of those "someday I'm going to..." things. When I saw Ken's bike I decided this was going to be the day. I sent a deposit to Evan, and the plan was in motion.

I work in the auto industry. This was all happening late last year. The day after sending the deposit check out, I was told there were layoffs coming. My income was taking a hit. The toy fund I used for my bike purchases wasn't going to be looking good at all. Was this a smart thing to do?

Screw it, I had put this off for too many years and if not now, when?. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead! The bashed tank (along with a lot of other stuff) got sold in an effort to get the money together before Evan got to my order and required payment. I sort of made it. The cash was there when I needed it, but my charge card had a balance on it now too. It seems a few other, non-related items got charged instead of paid for along the way. Funny how we rationalize things...

But I was lucky, I kept my job, things worked out. A couple months later I came home to find this in a box on my doorstep;


Here's how it looked perched on the bike. Don't mind the fenders and shocks and wheels and bars and things. Basically everything other then the tank and tail will be changed before it's done.


I also tossed it on my 160 project just to see how it looked on a black frame with silver fenders.


Looks like I won't be using a stock fender with the new tail! I'm not a big fan of the black and silver either. I've got a couple ideas on color schemes but since I change my mind so often I won't post up any ideas quite yet.


Next step was to mount this stuff.
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Old 11-18-2009, 10:46 PM   #2
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Very sweet
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Old 11-19-2009, 12:30 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesmoDog

I also tossed it on my 160 project just to see how it looked on a black frame with silver fenders.




Next step was to mount this stuff.

What's the story on the 'green' lathe???

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Old 11-19-2009, 07:13 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carl
What's the story on the 'green' lathe???

Carl
That would be a prototype John Deere branded tool I picked up at TSC a few years back?


Ok, fine, It's not. That is actually a Sheldon lathe that my dad bought years ago at an auction. It was used in an industrial arts class at his school - he offered scrap value for it and got it. Here's a better shot;


It needs a little work to be brought back to top notch condition but it works for the simple stuff I do on it. "Someday" I'll put the time into rebuilding it...
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Old 11-19-2009, 06:14 PM   #5
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The tank had to be in place before I could figure out where the tail went. Evan provided an aluminum channel that spanned the tunnel under the tank, I made up a bracket to attach this channel to the brace on the front of the frame. I had to be careful of a few things when figuring out where the tank should go.
1) I had to be able to get the mounting studs under the tank into the bracket. The top triple clamp can get in the way of the tank if you mount it too far forward. This probably isn't an issue if the rubber isolators aren't in place but on one early mock up I clamped the mounting bracket into position only to find I couldn't lift the tank off...

2) The bottom of the tank has to clear the cylinder head bolts. I taped some washers on there to make sure there was space between the tank and the engine, hence the green tape in a few of the photos. FWIW the 350 engine is a little taller than the 250.

3) The coil has to clear the bracket. I ended up clearancing the bracket a touch to make everything fit.

Here's a shot of the front bracket in place but before clearancing for the coil;


And how it all fits together under the tank. The isolator isn't in it's correct position though.


The back of the tank is supposed to be held up with a bracket (supplied) that has a mount for the tail too. I ditched that and made up a different one. It's just a channel that's been cut to match the frame and then milled out to get everything to the right height. I haven't taken any detailed pics, but here it is in it's rough form, I'll pretty it up before I weld it on to the frame.


Here's a shot of the bottom of the tail. The front bracket is in place, the rear of the tank is supposed to rest on that. There is another bracket that is supposed to be welded to the frame and then the two rear bolts attach to that. My problem was the fender I wanted to use would block access to the front bolt, so I'd have to remove the fender to remove the tail.


I moved things around by making a plate to move the rear bracket back even further so I could use the stock mounting points for the seat. The bracket will be bolted to the seat and also bolted to the frame instead of welded. The front part had me stumped. I came up with a lot of overcomplicated designs before I settled on a simple post bolted to the frame and yet another bracket bolted on the front of the seat. The bracket is still rough looking but it works, I'll pretty it up later. The post, rear bracket, and cut fender;


The seat. The plate will be flush against the seat when it's done, not raised up as shown.


The plan was to cut it into two sections to allow the tail to fit down near the frame rails. I spent an embarrassing amount of time working out various ways to mount the fender once it was cut. The rear part wasn't bad. Once I decided to go with a one piece bracket vs two separate tabs, I bent it up by hand and fit it. The front was another story. I went through a lot of ideas and at least four different pieces before finally getting something to work. At first I tried to make something that fit flat on the frame rails so there were twists and bends and minor chaos. I'd get SO close to having something, but on the last 10% I'd crash and burn. Then I cut the first "simple" bracket too short. On the final version I bent it up by hand, ground the ends to fit the tubes, then when it was close, instead of grinding them just a bit more I used a body hammer I had sitting nearby to make it fit. Worked like a champ. I welded (bronze welded, brazed, call it what you will) them in and drilled a couple holes. Then I trimmed the fender down and removed the valance panels. (Purists can relax - the fender was damaged before I got it) I still have some trimming to do, on the rear section especially, but I need to work out the taillight and license plate bracket first. Depending how that goes, I may not even use the rear section of the fender.


Add one NOS Benelli(?) front fender from Vintage Cosmo and a tach mount from Road and Race, and now it looks like this;





Dang, I really need to clean my basement...

And that's pretty much where I'm at with it. This thread will see updates as I get things done, but don't hold your breath. I've got the 160 to finish too and I'm HOPING that one sees some major progress over the next couple of months.
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Old 11-19-2009, 06:19 PM   #6
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Nice work !

If your other project is any indication, this bike will be magnificent !
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:59 PM   #7
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I'm having a heck of a time making any progress on my projects but things ARE happening.

After searching for a license plate/tail light bracket and not finding what I wanted, I decided to make my own. In general I try not to destroy original parts, but the one off my 160 was already bent and cracked... so time for a little cut and paste.





It's not done yet obviously but that's the general shape. It will have a section on top for the tail light and most likely a brace on that similar to the stock brackets but much narrower.

The tail light I want to use was intended as a running light, so it only had one festoon bulb in it. I thought about fitting two bulbs in there but instead decided to try an LED array. The housing is about 2" x 3", the array about 1.25" in diameter. It's dual intensity, which simplifies things. I'm not a photographer so have no idea how to take pics of lit bulbs to show different intensities. Trust me, it's low setting is brighter than the 6volt bulb that was in there, not to mention the high setting. I was worried about small viewing angles of the light but it's not as directional as I expected. It will light up a dark room.

Here's the LED cluster in the general position. More than enough room, I could even go with two (It's bright enough to shine through the reflector part of the lens on top). I'm considering a 1" diameter cluster on top for additional brake lighting.


And here it is lit up under the lens. This is in a lit room, the camera is compensating for the brightness obviously. I'm kinda bummed you can see the individual LEDs (it's more obvious in real life), I realize that's out of place on a vintage bike but it's a price I'll pay for low current draw and instant on. These bikes are known for having marginal charging systems, but that's likely going to change too so I'm probably worried about nothing.


I'm not 100% happy with the whole set up but until I find that perfect bracket, this will have to do.
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Old 10-19-2011, 10:35 PM   #8
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Wow, coming up on two years since I updated this. Since then about all I've done is add the Oldani replica front brake, clubmans, a tach, and a 150mm headlight. The rims will be switched with something else due to the spoke holes on the front not being at the correct angle, and these tires are intended for another project but they keep the rims from getting scratched up.







I'm rethinking some other things too. The tach may be shelved for a later project - I may try to put an Acewell speedo/tach in the headlight shell? Verdict is still out on that, basically I'm not going to try to make it look "era correct" which was my original plan. A few modern touches to make it work better may not be so bad?

I think the fenders have to go. I'll probably copy what Ken Reece did on the bike I showed earlier. I might go with a different tail light too. And the rear shocks may not make it either... Is it any wonder why these things take me so long?

I need some help with the headlight. I bought a trim ring, then a shell, and they don't fit each other (the trim ring is too loose). The trim ring is an Aprilia unit. Can anyone tell if this shell is a CEV part just by looking at it? I didn't see any markings on it anywhere. If it's a CEV I'll buy a matching trim ring. if it's not, I'll try to find an Aprillia shell.

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Old 10-20-2011, 05:30 PM   #9
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In 1969 I had a 350 scrambler-as i understand it was a 350 monza spec engine, put the 250 scrambler gearing, uni filter and the megaphone , it was a different bike. lived in the country in Idaho then-uncle said he could hear going over the I 80-4 miles away. What did you say,huh?
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Old 10-30-2011, 02:39 PM   #10
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I could use some feedback on how to set up and what material to use for a brake stay on the replica Oldani ("replica" sounds so much better than "fake") front brake I'm putting on this.

Question one concerns geometry. The linkage on the brake plate only allows certain orientations of the plate due to interfering with a boss on the fork leg. I've found two pics of other bikes that have used this brake and they are both set up like this.



I built a mock up brake stay to mimic that and decided I didn't like it due to the angle between the brake cable (red arrow) and the linkage. This next picture shows what I think is a better set up, solely based on the angle between the cable and the linkage. I admit I may be over thinking this.



Don't mind the geometry of the brake stay itself, that will change to eliminate the dogleg between the fork mounting bolts and the brake plate mounting bolt. So... am I missing something here? Is there some other reason to go with one orientation vs the other?

Next question - material for the stay. I was thinking 1/4" aluminum but that doesn't leave much room for a nut on the studs that will hold it on the fork. Thinner aluminum? Much thinner stainless steel? What are people using for these things?

EDIT; Also disregard the dot on the tire. I will be changing the rims and tires on this before it's done, these are just being used as place holders until I have the money to buy the right parts.
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Old 10-30-2011, 06:52 PM   #11
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250 Monza regret.....

Always wanted one of these since I was 16 and couldn't come up with enough lawnmowing money to upgrade from my $65 Cushman Eagle.

So for now, I just enjoy watching what happens with really talented folks who have lathes and shit in their garage.

I think mebbe I hate you, but in a good sorta way.

roy
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Old 10-31-2011, 06:41 AM   #12
DesmoDog OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flemsmith View Post
Always wanted one of these since I was 16 and couldn't come up with enough lawnmowing money to upgrade from my $65 Cushman Eagle.

So for now, I just enjoy watching what happens with really talented folks who have lathes and shit in their garage.

I think mebbe I hate you, but in a good sorta way.



BTW - These were all taken in my basement. My garage is actually quite boring at the moment. The upside to that is, for the first time ever, I can park my daily driver indoors during the winter so NO MORE SCRAPING THE F'ING WINDOWS in the morning. Which is nice.

When I was 16 I wasn't all that interested in motorcycles, it was all about cars. My mom wouldn't let me have a bike so I waited until after college to become infatuated. Now according to her I'm making up for lost time.
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Old 10-31-2011, 07:01 AM   #13
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I would go with the 1/4 inch aluminum for the brake stay as a minimum . If you need thiner for clearance go stainless.. Don't skrimp on this part.



The stay on my 450 Honda brake is short and 1/4 inch thick. No problems in 14 racing years, on the front of my 450 Ducati.
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Old 10-31-2011, 07:41 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by bk brkr baker View Post
I would go with the 1/4 inch aluminum for the brake stay as a minimum .
I posted this question to the bevelheads list and got a similar response. I think 1/4" is doable so I'll stick with that.

I'm also looking in to moving the cable attachment from the lower arm to the upper one so the rod between them is in tension. Might be able to swap the arms around, or put a saddle on the top pivot to catch the cable.

Also from the beveleheads list: The headlight shell IS an Aprilia part. So... the repop trim ring is wrong maybe? I'll have to look at both parts and see if some tweaking can be done.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:46 PM   #15
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I've got ten days off over Thanksgiving. I'm not traveling anywhere. No one's coming to visit. I should be able to get a LOT done on this then, right?

Yeah... not so much. I'm four days into my break and all I've done on this bike is rough out the brake stay. I went with 1/4" aluminum.



Don't mind the dimensions, it hasn't been trimmed down to it's final shape yet. I left the top large so I have material to shape into the fender mount and cable anchor.

I had to buy about four times more aluminum than I needed but it was only about $15 so no big loss. Actually it probably worked out well since I just paid for a front end for one of my back burner projects, and it's going to need a brake stay too. I'm guessing once the fork for that shows up I'll be splitting time between the two projects. Probably not my best plan...
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