Anyone who’s followed us for a while will be aware of Dutch’s obsession with Ducati’s Paul Smart replica, and of course the original 750 Desmo. Leo Fleuren, owner and founder of Affetto Ducati in The Netherlands, shares this passion and had some spare time over the winter to put to good use.
Leo has been selling special and rare Ducati’s and parts for over two decades and therefore accumulated a collection of spares, including an 860 Bevel, well, a few boxes of bits at least. Leo and his team brainstormed and sketched-out a plan to celebrate Paul Smart’s achievements with a inspiration café racer amalgamating classic design with modern handling.
Obviously the frame received more than just a cut’n’loop job but the untrained eye might not notice the Sport Classic swingarm, heavily modified to work with the 860’s chain running on the right, rather than left. Wheels are Ducati Scrambler and brakes liberated from a 996, the rear suspended by a 748R shock, Öhlins of course.
Fabio Taglioni’s Desmodronic twin is one of the most beautiful engines ever built, fact. The Affetto crew did mechanicals justice with a full and comprehensive rebuild, and from here it looks the absolute business on open bellmouths and stainless system by local race prep company Mille Pajic R&D.
The wiring harness is also new, and lightweight with a lithium battery in the tail powering a Motogadget speedo and Kellermann indicators. The tail though brought it’s own challenge, along with the tank. Leo wanted the very best, hand beaten aluminium bodywork so enlisted the help from the four wheeled world. The Netherlands has quite a talent pool to service a large domestic market for classic and vintage cars, and local restorer Labro Carrozzeria were enlisted to produce the stunning tank, seat unit and front mudguard. The saddle is upholstered in a lovely natural hide, which should take on a patina in no time.
Novant’ Anni, 90 years in Italian, was built not for a customer but as a personal project for Leo and his team to honour Ducati’s 90th birthday. The reward? Merely the satisfaction of a job well done. If we ever get to meet the Affetto Ducati guys I’ll be patting them heartily on the back, while trying to control an excitable puppy – Dutch.
We had better not tell him that the bike is for sale……..