It’s the sound

At speed (Road posted speeds only officer!), the exhaust note gives it the manic urgency of a an 8 y.o on level 10 of guitar hero. Sometimes I think of it as a conversation had while 500 foot soldiers march past your window. You know it’s something that you won’t forget in a hurry.

An architect represents their interpretation of a building- An intention to create some magic using calculations and marker pens. They’re offering a visual footprint, if you will, with each design. But just when did Ducati realise that they could produce a thing that can’t be seen, but which has worn the adoration of generations. Building anything motivated by solid visual appeal is constructive, but including the unmistakable resonance which Ducati motors bring to the traffic light quarrel is where it’s at. Desmo grins on me all the way baby.

But, why a Ducati? Bikes go fast, seriously nearly all of them do. But it’s the way they achieve it that gives your bike its “feeling”. Solutions are usually simple when they’re laid out in front of you, and the Desmo valve system fits this cliché like last winter’s gloves. It relies on rockers and cams (Eliminating springs) to control the motors breathing. Simple, strong and reliable. (Taglioni, eat your heart out champ!)

Honestly though, it’s not the simplicity of any Desmo system that got me addicted to Ducati’s.

I remember reading about their unique valve system in some bike mag’ when I was a teenager. As I read through the standard scientific comments on advantages and disadvantages of it, I became totally distracted and started recalling the Ducati’s I had heard. It was the noise I wanted. Infatuating and inebriating with vibrations that were transferred from these bikes to younger versions of me. The memories flooded in; Standing at a roadside, caught up for a moment watching some anonymous rider focusing on traffic lights. Waiting to release his clutch then disappear. All the while the intoxicating noise of his machine drubbed up the curbing and through my feet, and I remember that white Ducati font painted on a red tank. Best advertising ever! That tech article had me wanting this thing like crazy.

They’re not the most reliable bikes produced (especially not in rain!) but when they’re right they’re right on. Seriously. How many bikes cause strangers in cabs and waiting at bus stops to turn, admire your machine, then give you a nod? Mine does. I see this behaviour regularly, sometimes twice in one day. And I always know what just happened; I was on their side once too.

One day, I hope they’re on mine, it’s amazing.