Author Topic: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?  (Read 6549 times)

Offline AJH69

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SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« on: May 07, 2017, 09:40:53 AM »
Hi everyone -

New member. First post. Long-time Guzzi owner, however ('72 Eldo).

I've wanted an SP for some time and have a lead on what has turned out to be an SP III. Until now, I only really knew about the I and II. The III, well, it appears to be a different design and represents the aesthetics of a different decade. But is there more to it than just that?

The III seems like a well-sorted bike for what it is, w the the motor, cams, cylinders and 36mm carbs. Any one w saddle time on one care to chime in? I'd love to know how it compares to the I and II on the road and wrt maintenance.

I've begun to read about different Tonti frames. Am I right in thinking that the SP III frame differs from the I and II in that regard?

I've read as much as I can find about SP's. Problem is, most of it is about the earlier models. Why does it seem that there are so few of the III's around? Are they just rare...or dubious?

Thanks.

Offline guzzisteve

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2017, 10:00:11 AM »
I put 40Kmi on mine. Next owner put on 70Kmi. It's a LM3 w/1000 kit basicly, frame is LM 4, bodywork comes from the Police bikes, and has a cam in it. If the Digiplex ignition craps out you can stick a dizzy in it. I loved mine, didn't get wet riding in the rain as long as I kept moving.
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Online blackcat

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2017, 02:15:47 PM »
I had one and didn't have any problems. You will get hot in warm weather, especially in stop and go traffic. Plastic parts are hard to find if you drop the bike, but Reboot seems to have a fair supply of used parts but shipping from France could make it expensive. Passengers won't like the bike, so beware.
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Offline slopokes

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2017, 02:39:49 PM »
I have had three of the sp1000's,two sp 2's and one three. I liked the two with the 16" front wheel the best. The three would be my choice from ca. To nj. :boozing:

Wildgoose Chase Moto Guzzi

Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2017, 02:39:49 PM »

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2017, 02:58:06 PM »
I have the Strada which is the SPIII without fairing.  Same platform similar to the Cali III fairing and non-fairing with shorter sw.  IIRC.  On both my Cal III and Strada, I've retrofitted dizzys.  Both had the Digiplex ignitions go out.  Solid bikes.

You'll like the fairing in the Fall, Winter and Spring.  It will extend you're riding season. 
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline redrider90

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2017, 08:44:50 PM »
I have the Strada which is the SPIII without fairing.  Same platform similar to the Cali III fairing and non-fairing with shorter sw.  IIRC.  On both my Cal III and Strada, I've retrofitted dizzys.  Both had the Digiplex ignitions go out.  Solid bikes.

You'll like the fairing in the Fall, Winter and Spring.  It will extend you're riding season.

Did the 1990 model have the Digiplex ignitions or did they have the Mille/Cali Motoplat? The 90's model had the mid-valve 71 HP  engine I believe the same fork assembly as the LemansV (correct me if I am wrong).  But it had the foot controls of the Mille and later was basically s modified Strada. Or maybe the 93 Strada was a naked SPIII?
I road with one on some very small county roads outside of Ferguson NC and the rider pushed that bike hard. I had to work to stay with him and his was fully dressed. Not that much more HP than a Mille but it was plenty fast.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2017, 08:48:35 PM by redrider90 »
Red 90 Mille GT

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2017, 09:24:17 PM »
Yeah, my '93 Strada is a naked SPIII.  IIRC Digiplex ignitions were on the U.S. bikes and Motoplat's on Euro bikes.  Might have been the EPA requirements or just a change of suppliers.  My Cali III had a Digiplex.
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Online blackcat

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2017, 09:35:53 PM »
http://www.stein-dinse.biz/Complete-partlist/Unsorted/electronic-ignition-Digiplex::131401.html

Still available from Stein-Dinse but not cheap. I have a back up box but never had a problem with it on the SP or in the 1000S.  There is some company in Germany that will fix the Digi.
1968 Norton Fastback
1976 Lemans
1981 CX-100
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Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2017, 09:38:30 PM »
 :shocked:
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline charlie b

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2017, 10:00:06 PM »
I had a T5 and wanted a fairing.  So I got one from Reboot (yes, the whole thing cost about $500 which included shipping).

I did cut off the lowers at the top of the cyl heads.  That made it bearable in summer (just had to move legs a little bit for cooler air).  In traffic it was no different than without the fairing.

The only downside was in heavy rain.  The rain would hit the faceshield and there was no airflow to blow it off.  So, ride for a bit, stick the head out the side into the airflow, ride some more, repeat.  Light rain nothing reached the faceshield, or chest.  Arms and lower legs would get wet.

1984 850 T5 (sold)
2009 Dodge Cummins 2500

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2017, 10:07:51 PM »
I do the left & right lean on my SP1000NT.
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline siabeid

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2017, 10:24:42 PM »
I had an SP3 for 4 or 5 years. It was a great bike. Plenty fast. A solid 50 miles a gallon. Good brakes. Excellent weather protection. Really good handling. I think it had a lot of the same components as the 1000s.  I sold it when I got a Norge. According to the specs, the Norge was probably a better bike.  I liked the SP3 better. I would be happy to have it back. I really like non California Tonti frames, though.  The fairing was kind of tight around the knees, if you have long legs.

Offline redrider90

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2017, 10:48:47 PM »
Yeah, my '93 Strada is a naked SPIII.  IIRC Digiplex ignitions were on the U.S. bikes and Motoplat's on Euro bikes.  Might have been the EPA requirements or just a change of suppliers.  My Cali III had a Digiplex.

U.S. 1990 Mille's including mine came with Motoplat  and 1990 Cali also had Motoplat but what did the 90 SP III have?
Red 90 Mille GT

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2017, 11:01:08 PM »
Not sure.  My Cali III could have been a Motoplat.  Might have been the other way around.  I'd have to look at the parts.  I threw them in a box somewhere.  :tongue:
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline normzone

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2017, 11:17:31 PM »
'72 Eldo ! My man ! Been there, done that, would do it again ...
That's the combustion chamber of the turbo shaft. It is supposed to be on fire. You just don't usually see it but the case and fairing fell off.

Online SPScottNT

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #15 on: May 08, 2017, 07:57:18 AM »
I've got a I and a III and I like them both.  The III has a bit more engine power and a more substantial fork/front end - as a result,  possibly better handling if you push it.  As others have noted, its a LeMans in touring clothing.  Last few times I needed to do a 500 mile, day I picked the III. 

Scott
Athens, GA   

Offline flangeman_70

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2017, 11:55:00 AM »
Here is a link to all my posts. Most are centered around the SPIII or Centauro.
http://wildguzzi.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;area=showposts;u=6779

In short I love the old girl. A bit of TLC and she runs great and delivers :thumb:

Adam
« Last Edit: May 09, 2017, 09:34:25 AM by flangeman_70 »
You only went to school to learn how to learn

Adam

SP III 1990
V10 Centauro 1996

Offline Denis

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2017, 07:54:58 PM »
SPIIIs were great bikes. I put quite a few miles on a couple of demo bikes when they were first brought into the US. That fairing offered phenomenal protection.
Contrary to what some think, they did not have the 1000cc LeMans engine. They had the "world" engine, with 36mm carbs, though I seem to remember the heads were 850 LeMans heads on top of a 1000 cc engine. It's a great mill.

Complaints were that crash bars were never available for them and that fairing is rare anything. If you were tall, the seat tended to slide you forward towards the tank and your knees would tend to rest on the back of the lower fairings. THat's fixable if it's a problem for you.

Otherwise, they are terrific.
Show me a Le Mans IV and I'll show you a Le Mans 1000.
'87 SPII, '74 Eldorado, '85 LeMans, '91 California, '71 Ducati 450 RT, '41 Indian 841, '40 Indian Model 640-B ex-Canadian Army

Offline Lannis

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #18 on: May 08, 2017, 08:01:58 PM »

Complaints were that crash bars were never available for them and that fairing is rare anything. If you were tall, the seat tended to slide you forward towards the tank and your knees would tend to rest on the back of the lower fairings. THat's fixable if it's a problem for you.

Otherwise, they are terrific.

I've mentioned before that I wanted an SPIII really badly, and found a perfect low-mileage one a few years back.   I went up, money in hand, to buy it.

Then Fay and I test-rode it together.   I was REALLY hoping that my legs COULD rest on the back of the lower fairings.   But it was not to be.   At 6'2" and 32" inseam, with a 5'8" 34" inseam girl on the back, there was NO WAY for me to get my legs behind the fairings at all.   

I tried, we squirmed, we slid back, we really wanted this smooth, solid, "simple" touring bike, but we couldn't do it, and had to head for home with tears in our eyes, to eventually find the one Guzzi that we both fit on comfortably ... the Stelvio ....

Lannis
"Hard pounding, this, gentlemen; let's see who pounds the longest".

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2017, 12:48:57 AM »
I feel a little cramped on it. (Strada)  I can only imagine on riders 6' or taller.  If it had the Daytona engine, I would have bought that instead of Daytona 1000.  I wanted the engine.
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline 93spada

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2017, 08:26:35 AM »
Hi folks
I have to say that I love mine. 77,058mi.(just looked) Yes it is rare. Mine is frame #14
 I'm 6'2" with a 34" inseam. It is tight but the PO shaved the seat back about 4"? (haven't seen a original in molested one). My knees do rest on the faring but it is not hard enough to cause problems.
2 up is rough with pillion getting buffeted and sliding forward constantly. My wife was small so it was not too bad.
Faring is as everyone says. Very good protection but warm on summer stop and go's.
I was not excited about the looks of the original bags so i got some replacement Givi's  and they look
(too me) much more fitting. Had to move rear turn signals.
I also added bar riser to sit more upright (getting old!!!).
The engine is still strong and pulls hard at 4500rpm and up. it is a medium valve engine. Top speed is not an issue. 1st gear is a little tall so clutch takes a beating?? Although I just put my first one in. If you have to pull the main bearing be very careful and read all the posts first.
Lots of silly things to be fixed along the way. Found a side cover screw too long that ate into the swing arm over time. Things like that but I have not had to do any major rebuilds.
Overall handling is great. I run Dunlop 404"s and can scrape center stand on good twisties. I like integral brakes for a little trail braking thru the corners. It seems to settle it nicely.

For all day solo, I would do it again in a heart beat. For all day 2 up, not so much.




fb photos upload


Hope this helps.
Put something exciting between your leg!!!
Paul






PJM

Offline nc43bsa

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2017, 04:31:50 PM »
Those bags do look good.

The angles of the bags match the angles of the bike.
1990 MilleGT

Online Guzzistajohn

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2017, 04:53:56 PM »
One of my riding buddies has a Strada. It's a rock in' machine!
ебать Россию!   Not anti social-pro solitude

Offline AJH69

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #23 on: May 10, 2017, 09:32:15 PM »
Thanks for the replies so far, everyone.  :thumb: This has been the most real-world info I've seen on these, by far. (Yew Em Gee's account was informative also. The ones on that site always are, in one way or another.) It's been a busy week and so this is my first chance to write.

The consensus so far is that it's a solid bike w a nice motor. The discussion about the fairing is where it gets more personal. Clearly this is a bike to try before you buy. Lannis, that's a heartbreaker of a story. Glad you found the Stelvio -- a bike I have begun to think of also. 

I went to see the bike this past Sunday. It was strapped into a wheel chock in a bike trailer, along with a smaller bike tucked in beside it.  It was raining, and the owner is less ambulatory than he was earlier in life, so in it stayed. I brought a flashlight and climbed inside and poked around for a 1/2 hr.

Here is some of what I came away with:

-Ergonomics, as many have said, are a definite factor because of how far reaching the windscreen and lowers are. Wow. Sitting on that bike is like trying to wear a custom suit...that's made for someone else. Hooray to be the Guzzi lover it fits.

-It took me a while to find a way to fit onto it! Either my forehead when helmeted (imagined) would bump the windscreen, or I couldn't reach the bars. I finally found one position--and one position only--where I felt I could ride it. (I'm 5'10" w a 31" inseam. Pretty much an Everyman.) I wanted to push back farther, or maybe sit taller so my knees weren't bent into the fairing. As it was, it's an easy bike to flatfoot. Maybe a taller saddle and windscreen extension is the answer...

-Are the h-bars on these supposed to be three piece adjustable ones? These were. There is no handlebar cover.

- The saddle is non-stock, I believe. It's basket-weave textured like a Corbin in the actual sitting areas, but w a 3"x3" Italian flag near the nose. It didn't quite sit flush with the tail, nor did it sit flush with the side cover. It's like it shrunk. 

My conclusion regarding the ergos: It'll take some work to dial in this fit. But it is do-able.

Offline nc43bsa

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #24 on: May 10, 2017, 10:01:23 PM »
I liked the looks of the bike when it came out, but at 6'3" with a 33" inseam I couldn't sit on it comfortably.  Making changes was not possible as it was a dealer demo.

Maybe if one comes up locally I'll look at getting one with the idea of making a few ergo changes.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2017, 10:04:31 PM by nc43bsa »
1990 MilleGT

Offline 93spada

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2017, 06:43:13 AM »
Hi Folks
This is a good reference for parts. You can tell if they are original.

http://www.harpermoto.com/parts-by-motorcycle/1990-2000-moto-guzzi-motorcycles/sp-iii-1000-1989-1994.html

The original bars are one piece.
Seat sounds horribly molested. It might make a good test unit to carve and dial in.
There a 2 windshields available. Standard and 10cm? taller. That maybe part of the helmet hit.

on=1&keyword=spiii+windscreen" class="bbc_link" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">http://www.mgcycle.com/index.php?main_page=advanced_search_result&search_in_descripti on=1&keyword=spiii+windscreen

What color is it?
How many miles?
Curiosity.....last 4 #'s of the VIN?

Good Luck!
PJM

Offline Ronkom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #26 on: May 11, 2017, 09:08:35 AM »
I lusted after an SPIII for years. Finally found one, had it shipped in, after getting some little niggles taken care of took to the NC rally (from home 6-7 hours  mostly on the Blue Ridge  Parkway). By the time I got there I was in misery. I sat & stared at the bike, listing in my mind all the changes I'd have to make for the bike to fit me better (seat, taller windshield, more foot room, SOMETHING different for the bars. (I'm 6'2" around 260, big feet, long torso & arms). I decided I'd destroy what I most liked (the look) if I made the changes. Sold the bike & bought an EV. In my experience the SPIII is a beautiful bike....scaled for a smaller rider.
ronkom   
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Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #27 on: May 11, 2017, 03:49:20 PM »
Y'ep.  They design the ergos for Europeans vs Americans.  They're shorter.  Works for me since I'm shorter than 6'.   :tongue:
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉

Offline ccoli

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #28 on: May 11, 2017, 04:08:48 PM »
Love mine. 154k miles. I'm 5'6" with a 29" inseam. Had to get shorter shocks and run 80 series tires.
USA models are all 1993 and have Digiplex ignition. I have had no issues with the ignition other than the sensor getting metal shavings stuck on it. Low rpm miss when that happens. Clean it up and go.
Wisconsin MGNOC Rep
03 EVT/EML hack, 99 Bassa, SPIII, 3-78 Robins, 75 T3, 74 Eldo, 32 Sport15, Ambo custom.

Offline Tom

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Re: SP III ... a rare bird? What gives?
« Reply #29 on: May 11, 2017, 05:25:15 PM »
How does Judi like the back seat? or did she not like my Strada rear seat?  (How's that for a double negative" :grin:
From the Deep Deep South out in left field.  There are no stupid questions.  There are however stupid people asking questions.  🤣, this includes me.  😉


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