Ducati Monster – Rive Gauche Kustoms
Written by Phil Guy.
Not all builds need be the equivalent of a heart transplant. Some are constrained by time, others by budget, and then there are those bikes that simply don’t need a complete overhaul to begin with. The team at Rive Gauche Kustoms faced a combination of the latter two recently when their web designer, Marco, handed them the keys to his perfectly serviceable Ducati Monster 600, and not a whole lot of cash.
The Parisian crew have a fine record of street trackers, but this time the remit called for something different, a skate-influenced, pure streeter. So, with modest mechanical work and a slew of custom touches, a motorcycle facelift if you will, they turned out this ‘street trasher’.
But don’t go thinking this restrained build was without its challenges. “The base was not exactly the type of bike we usually like to work on,” they explained, “but it has been a pretty exciting job to do as we decided to give it the maximum personalisation.’
That personalisation was driven by Marco’s penchant for custom culture, and his love of skating. (Pure coincidence we’re sure, but our previous RGK feature also bore a skater’s influence.)
The most drastic work was done at the back end. The subframe was shortened, and all corresponding brackets and protruding plastics removed. The tail light was tucked under the seat, and brackets fabricated for the Rizoma indicators.
With all the streamlining at the rear, the seat line was left hanging in the breeze, so the boys modified the seat pan, dropping the height to match the flow. The seat lock was hidden, as was much of the wiring.
The powder coating gun, friend to many a budget builder, was run over a host of parts: swing arm, handle bars, fork brace, all the controls, rear pegs, head light surround… you get the idea.
Marco wanted a raw-looking tank, so it was chemically stripped rather than abrasively treated, which retained the factory imperfections, and then matte varnished. The fuel cap was, yes, you guessed it — black powder coated.
The board holder was fabricated from 1-inch tubing to match the Monster’s frame. It of course boasts a quick-release mechanism, to get you smartly from two wheels to four. Rounding out the skate vibe are the Ducati and RGK decals cut from grip tape.
While this bike probably won’t satisfy the hardcore build-heads, it might just draw a wistful smile from those of us who have spent an afternoon trying to nail a kick-flip.
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