Despite first appearing on our radar in June of 2020, Giacomo Galbiati of Italy’s GDesign has quickly become one of our favorite custom motorcycle builders, on account of his world-class eye for design, utterly exquisite craftsmanship, and increasingly diverse range of styles. And after recently tackling a brass-clad Royal Enfield Bullet, a Buell dustbin racer, and a fully-electric board tracker, the Como-based customs outfit has just pulled the cover off of its latest project, a 2002 Ducati 900SS cafe racer known as “IL DUCA” (Italian for “The Duke”).
The L-Twin-based project is largely inspired by Ducati’s race bikes from half a century ago. After receiving a complete engine overhaul, the trellis chassis was treated to a bespoke subframe before being cloaked in a modified vintage fairing with a transparent section that exposes the underlying framework and a modern projector-style LED headlight set behind a Le Mans-style bubble screen. Cloaked in a Mediterranean blue and metal flake livery based on Ducati’s 1957 125 Grand Prix racers, Il Duca rides on gold Marchesini wheels and features a one-off tail section complemented with a bespoke seat, tank pad, and matching bum-stop tailpiece courtesy of Luca Ronzoni of Italy’s L.R. Leather. Other details include Ohlins suspension, a modified instrumentation setup, custom fenders front and aft, micro-LED indicators, and an old-school superbike exhaust.