RSD Desmo Fighter

This Desmo project is a special one, as all Ducati builds are, but it’s also one that brings some anxiety along with it, as carving up a second Duscati Desmosedici D16RR may push the Ducatisti purists over the edge. Only 1500 Desmosedicis were created globally and this one is a fine specimen. It is number 0245/1500 and has 4,158 miles on the clock. It’s a rider no doubt and that is what its owner intends to do even more of with the newly modified machine. Being a surgeon, he’s a handy and intelligent guy and when his age started creeping up past his skeletal ability to ride a superbike, rather than sell the Desmo, he chose to do exactly as he wanted and build a Desmo Streetfighter with some more comfortable ergonomics. That’s where we come in.  


Getting then Desmo project finished up was a challenge as we did take an entirely different approach utilizing the VR design. The real magic was in converting that data to usable information we could 3d print and then utilize to create the molds for the finalized carbon body. We worked with our friends at Saddlemen to repop the final body panels and they were able to bring the design to life in a carbon fiber weave that matched the original Desmo. The panels did take some massaging to fit to the final bike, but the end results were a perfect fit. The body was then sprayed with a clear and matched to the original Carbon body on the Desmo. The final panels included the upper fairing and lower scoop. Right and left tank inserts. Right and left radiator shrouds and venting and a lower fairing. We finished the upper fairing with an incredibly hard to match Desmo Red which Chris Wood at Airtrix took great pain in matching to the original bike. A rapid prototyped windscreen was the final touch.

the helmet

As the Desmo came together we realized that our latest Colab helmet with Bell was nearly completed so we aligned the launch of the bike and the new Mulholland helmet which was inadvertently almost a dead match for the Desmo Red.

The RSD Bullitt Carbon Mulholland, a vintage racing inspired graphic in the lightweight carbon composite shell, the Bullitt Carbon uses only premium materials inside and out and now carries pops of Desmo red, orange, brown and maroon along with exposed carbon recalling the classic racing paint schemes that inspired the graphic as well as echoing our Desmo project.

“The Bullitt Carbon has long been a favorite helmet of mine because of the carbon composite shell and large eye port. Similar to the MX-9 Mips Rally we launched earlier this year, we wanted to create classic looking graphic that embraced the carbon finish of the Bullitt. We also wanted to incorporate some of RSD’s long-term partners – Dunlop, K&N and Motul." - Roland Sands

the build

Rule number one, remnants of the machine must remain 100% stock without any modifications or cutting. So we started with an un-faired bike which we scanned using a Peel scanner to pull data into a Virtual Reality modeling program. The VR concept is new to us and pushing the design into VR lays out some new opportunities for design and production as well be able to 3D print the models and use the rapid prototype bodywork direct. We’ve mounted a 7” LED headlight and fabricated a gauge mount that also allows space for the ECU in Its original position.


Rule #2, the bike has to be comfortable and remove the weight off the wrists. Being a surgeon, it’s important for the owner to maintain his hands to the best of his ability, while still ripping up the canyons. We’ve ditched the clip-ons and designed a one-off top triple clamp to utilize a new set of RSD pullback risers and ProTaper handlebars to get the bar position into something more akin to a streetfighter rather than a GP bike. We’ve also made spacers for the rearsets, dropping the foot pegs down slightly to decrease the bend in the knee.

Rule #3, the bike needed to stay a Ducati. Radiator and frame covers have been fabricated to align with the bikes original design and will be re-popped from carbon fiber. A new lower fairing which mates with the Termignoni GP7 titanium racing exhaust system will be fabricated. The custom upper fairing will mock the Desmo tank shape and will be mated to a hand shaped windscreen and new reservoir mounts will need to be aligned with the new bar position. We’re also swapping out the 16.5” rear wheel for a tire swap friendly 17” and a set of Sticky Dunlop Q4 track ready street tires which should update this Desmo into a comfortable canyon carver ready to do battle on any paved road. The goal is to round out Ducati’s Desmo lineup with a production ready example of a Desmo Streetfighter that could have been, and a one and only original for our bold and ambitious client.