We are located in sunny LANGLEY, BC, CANADA

Contact Jim Bush by email

Phone 604-533-8004


Oct 10, 2016





project file: MV AGUSTA F3 800


... The Red Machine v2 - retro build

by Jim Bush & Elizabeth Trevisan

Following on from the 2012 F4 750 Magni Replica Project (link here for details) which turned out really successful, the desire to have another shot at a MV custom was still lingering in the background. In March 2016 a 2014 MV Agusta F3 800 turned up at the insurance auction and soon thereafter ended up in our garage. The bike had done only 7000 kms but had suffered badly in an accident - rear wheel broken, all the bodywork damaged, rear frame bent, not an easy task to put right especially since OEM MV parts are expensive and take some time to source. This is the perfect candidate for a retro make over.


The challenge has come to decide on which design direction to pursue with this. There are four other noted examples of MV Agusta customs or retro builds done in the last few years that do capture one's mind on the possibilities of what can be done.

1. MAGNI STORIA - I bought kit no.1 for my 2004 910R Brutale after meeting Arturo and Giovanni Magni on a trip to Italy in 2013. This kit transformed the bike with a bolt on make-over kit - new handmade aluminum tank, seat, tail piece, side panels, fenders, headlight, exhaust and new Kineo spoked wheels. Very sharp, but the one draw back is because the frame remains stock, the tank is overly large and the overall bike still retains a lot of the modern MV bulk and complexity. A nice looking and sounding bike none the less.

storia storia1

Storia No.1 at the Magni Workshop with Arturo & Giovanni Magni in 2013 - our Storia 2014 in Canada

2. WALT SIEGEL BOL D' OR Special - this is a body work kit for a B3 Brutale, a very nice modern look, bringing some "designer" style to the complex MV form. The stock frame remains.


3. DEUS AGO TT (released 2016) - a "bespoke" custom work that is intended to pay tribute to Ago, but this build somewhat lacking from the design point of view. The tank is clearly a misfit, kind of perched on top, as a result of retaining the MV frame. There is a lot of excellent detailing done, but not my favourite.


4. MAGNI FILO ROSSO now in limited production, a true retro rebuild with modern benefits. A new frame and retro running gear house a F3 800 engine - it breathes naturally with no airbox and out through 3 separate megaphone exhausts. This is in the same genre as my last F4 Replica rebuild. Very successful indeed and a large part of the inspiration for the La Macchina Rossa II build.

FR-1 fr-2

Also worth a mention is the MAGNI ROCKET THREE of Brent Lenahan of California. This is a exciting clean build, this is where the inspiration for using a half fairing comes from.


Magni Rocket 3 and my 2014 F4 910R Storia at the Quail Gathering in California 2014



The "LA MACHINA ROSSA II" will be a variant of the "FILO ROSSO", in as much as it will be built around a new handmade frame, using a 70's style Magni aluminum gas tank and curved megaphone mufflers, but will retain the running gear (forks, brakes and swing arm, mono rear suspension) of the F3 800. We will use the KINEO spoked wheels from the Storia (replacing them on the Storia with the stock wheels from the F3 800). Also, instead of a full race fairing, there will be the 1/2 Magni fairing up front. By retaining the forks and swing arm, the high tech componentry will be unaffected and utilized (ie. ABS, traction control and switchable performance curves).

The La Macchina Rossa II frame concept is very similar to the previous F4 frame build with one major exception - we will be using a mono-shock swing arm, not a twin shock. By using the OEM lower-rear frame to swing arm side plates these forged aluminum plates will be cut and machined for a bolt connection at a rose joint in the new steel frame. This is a very straight forward way not to have to re-engineer the swing arm rocker and dog bones arrangement for the mono-shock, plus I don't have to manufacture a new swing arm.

LMR2 frame1


Filo Rosso Gas tank from MAGNI is the centre piece of this build


Kineo wheelset used on the STORIA - will be used for the La Macchina Rossa II






October 24, 2016 - Measurement and the "Struth"


Stripped down to bare basics - measurement time. Accident damage now apparent to front forks with a 30mm offset to one side, shows that the fork tubes or frame is bent. Good thing I am making a new frame.

Donor bike dismantle... starting October 2016

f3 wreck

Arrival - charged battery and it is a runner, no error codes on the dash - temporary back wheel from my F4


A few buddies in the shop already to keep the F3 company


Removal of body work underway

f3 parts pile

The pile of left over take-off parts, not much useable or saleable here, the donor bike had sustained considerable damage.