Maarten Timmer’s passion for cars and motorcycles traces back to his grandfather, Arnold, who was a mechanic and also a mentor. It’s only fitting that Timmer’s stunning new Ducati café racer pays tribute to the man better known as “Nol.” The prototype build, which carries the production number 001, also carries the loving moniker 4Nol. It doesn’t take a code breaker to decipher the significance of those four characters. The labor of love was designed and engineered by Timmer, but was completed with the close working partnership and help of Rob van der Heijden.
The 4Nol sits with a lean and mean forward stance (Photo courtesy mkfotografie.nl 2016)
The concept began with Timmer’s rumination over the skeletal visage of a frame, a pair of wheels, and a set of forks that sat languishing in a shed. The builder’s vision was that of a seamless and unique café bike built around a Ducati 900ie engine. Once the rebuilt Italian L-twin power-plant was fitted into the specially adjusted frame, the real artistry began. A foam core for the clay model of the seat and bodywork was crafted and fitted to the rolling chassis. In keeping with Timmer’s vision of a seamless café racer, the entire tank, seat, and tailpiece were designed and sculpted in unison on this clay model.
In a process that Timmer’s beloved grandfather could not have imagined, the final clay model design was translated into rough 3D CAD data, making use of a 3D scanner. This data served as the starting point for the 4Nol’s digitally perfected one-piece body. When this stage was complete, fiberglass molds were made and the final bodywork was laminated. The end result of this tactile and digital effort was exactly the unified and seamless silhouette that Timmer craved. Smokin’ Motorcycles now offers this body as a kit for Ducati Monsters.
The beauty of 4Nol goes beyond the lines so carefully created with the bodywork. The bike’s performance compliments its aggressive aesthetics. To open up the lungs of the Ducati engine, Dell’Ortho PHM40 carburetors were mounted on 41mm intake manifolds. Pointing forward from the carbs are a pair of conical K&N performance air filters. You can clearly see the K&N through the trellis framework. The Smokin’ guys report that the K&N helps generate a high torque level at low revs and also provides a wonderful “hoarsely and greedy sound” from the intake. Nice description gentlemen!
Notice the K&N performance air filter at the heart of the Dutch masterpiece (Photo courtesy mkfotografie.nl 2016)
On the exhaust end, Smokin’ Motorcycles developed a new 2-1-2 exhaust manifold system that leads to the two Spark megaphone silencers. Both silencers are mounted with beautiful CNC milled brackets, which were engineered in house at Smokin’ Motorcycles. The exhaust cans sit at an aggressively rakish angle, and the sound emanating from them is equally aggressive.
No stylistic or performance stone was left unturned on the 4Nol. The frame, swing arm, and wheels share the same satin black powder coating, and the bodywork is painted a beautiful metallic grey. A carbon fiber front fender is fitted, and clip-on bars are mounted to a visually striking upper triple tree. On the bottom end, fully adjustable foot pegs are mounted to the custom frame. The engine is accented with details such as aftermarket aluminum timing belt covers, clutch cover, and a gold colored pressure plate.
The entire package achieves exactly what gleamed in Timmer’s eye when he looked at that basket case in the shed. The 4Nol is an excitingly eclectic mix of influences. It was created by Dutch visionaries, beats with an Italian heart, and serves as a fitting tribute to a grandfather’s legacy. That’s a bike with character and purpose.
With the 4Nol vision completed, the folks at Smokin’ Motorcycles are on to another great custom build. They have their collective noses to the grindstone on a bike that will carry the name Ghost Dog. Rest assured, this dog will have both a bark and a bite, and will do it in style!
That beautiful bodywork is the result of manual and digital artistry (Photo courtesy mkfotografie.nl 2016)
If you own a Ducati of your own, you can add some style and performance with a K&N KN-153 oil filter or an air filter. Use the K&N search by vehicle tool to find the right parts for your needs.