The Scrambler has been a huge sales hit for Ducati, accounting for about a quarter of all Ducatis registered worldwide. It’s also attracted the attention of the world’s top customizers, with tantalizing builds from Krugger, Holographic Hammer, Untitled and Marcus Walz.
Now it’s the turn of Rough Crafts’ Winston Yeah, and this might just be our favorite Scrambler custom yet. With a sprinkling of performance upgrades and lightweight parts, ‘Jab Launcher’ is proof of the old racer’s adage: ‘add lightness.’
“This build was for a good friend who always liked Ducatis,” says Winston. “He’s into sporty street bikes, but something like a Panigale is too much because he never sees himself going to a race track.”
The plan was simple: make the already compact 2016-spec Scrambler Ducati Icon even lighter, cleaner, and tougher.
The first job was to install beefy Marzocchi forks from a Panigale 1199, with the outer tubes blacked out in the classic Rough Crafts style. They’re hooked up with triple clamps from CNC Racing, and there’s a Gears Racing H2+ shock to keep the back end under control.
Power now runs through an AEM Factory sprocket and a pair of 17-inch carbon BST wheels now supplement the top-shelf suspension: 3.5 inches at the front, and a chunky 6 inches at the back. (“BST wheels are a no- brainer.”) The rubber is Pirelli’s super-sticky Rosso Corsa pattern.
To add to the racy look, Winston’s also fitted a Monster 1100 single-sided swingarm. It was a relatively easy fit—with just a little shimming required—but it’s four centimeters longer than the stock Scrambler swingarm.
So Gears Racing lengthened the shock, to avoid the ‘stretched drag bike’ look. The wheelbase is now almost identical to the current Monster 1200.
The stunning brake system comes from regular Rough Crafts collaborator Beringer. But this time Winston has slotted in WSBK discs from Brembo at the front, to sync with the style of those gorgeous BST wheels. The rear disc is a Monster 1100 unit that matches the swingarm.
Beringer also supplied the clutch and brake master cylinders and levers. They’re attached to 57mm clip-ons from Bonamici Racing for a more rakish riding position. The slinky grips, bar-end turn signals and mirrors are from Motogadget.
The mods to the overall shape of the bike are subtle in comparison—a tribute to Ducati getting things right, straight out of the box. “The stock tank shape is a very clean, classic shape, so we kept the overall silhouette,” says Winston. “We just re-made the sides to give it more of the Rough Crafts signature style.” The mods were handled by local sheet metal wizards MS Pro.
“We like the clean cockpit, but the modern electronic system makes removing the gauge a huge headache. So we instead of going through that headache, we relocated the gauge to the gas tank, which opens up the front end—and gives that ‘super stripped’ look without losing any function.”
The seat and tail unit are new, though. “The stock ‘drop curve’ seat was inspired by the vintage Ducati Scrambler, but it doesn’t appeal to me: it always looks kind of ‘heavy.’
“So we made carbon fiber side panel sets, and a cafe seat/tail kit that straightens the side line without any cutting or welding to the frame. We kept the stock tail light, because it just works with the lines.” The dark, satiny paint comes from the spray guns of Air Runner.
The stock Icon Scrambler is pretty light on its feet, clocking in at 186 kg (410 lb) fully fueled. This one will be well under the 400-pound mark, so the engine mods are restricted to new covers from Speedy Moto and DucaBike.
But then Winston got wind of a new exhaust system for the Scrambler from HP Corse. “About half way through the build, we heard about the HP Corse GP07 exhaust,” says Winston, “and they were kind enough to give us an early set. Due to the Sato Racing rear sets we’re running we had to make a slight modification to make the pipes fit, but that mid-section is just too sexy to pass on.”
We reckon this is one of Rough Crafts’ best builds yet. ‘Jab Launcher’ is a shot of two-wheeled adrenaline: a light and stealthy modern custom, perfect for the workday commute and blasting around the backroads at the weekend.
Who needs a temperamental sportbike when you’ve got a tool as sharp as this?