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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'll start the dreaded yearly "W" thread.

Winter project #1: I'm committed to improving the riding position on my '07 SS800, currently clips ons have wrists too far down. Shame, I def love the bike, but Ducati completely destroyed the riding position from the older mid '90's SS version to this later one. Personally, its a turn off to riding it, as is. The condition demands action.

Complicating an easy fix (simply raise the clip-ons) is the coffin style master and clutch master reservoirs...creating interference with fairing when bars turned lock to lock. I believe "remote style" reservoirs, each mounted on the forward side of the top triple will provide the needed clearance to adjust the bars both up and back. A clip on change may be necessary, too.

In seeing member @dmende0919 ZX7 I noticed the remote reservoirs mounted exactly as I'd envisioned...the light bulb moment. He happened to have spare sets, we made a deal and I'm now ON IT. Will be mocking up various configurations to provide comfort and unimpeded function. A neat "factory look" is critical, too.

Winter project #2: the older 900SS will get full LED's in the instrument panel, enhancing daytime visibility

Thats it for now, but will no doubt change

Anybody else? Feel free to chime in, no requirement to be from NE to participate!

Pic a Honda Superhawk with Apex 3" adjustable clipons. A reasonable bar position as this is my ultimate goal on the SS800. Futile using the stock, fixed bars...I've ordered the fully adjustable, quality Apex bars.

Winter project #3....VFR to get trick NGK spark plug cables (requiring measuring existing cables...very likely 21 YO originals?)

#4...refurbish my neglected blacktop driveway...prelim crack filling currently ongoing...final seal coat to be applied this weekend, I believe. Must knock this off while weather is allowing, even deferring rides! Sunny, cool forecast the next week or so.
 

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I'm in Florida. Winter time is for riding!!!
Don't you have some homework to grade? :wink2:

Seriously though, I need Winter this year to get to the jobs that constant riding would get in the way of.


#1 - Complete strip to the frame for the VFR 800 for a very thorough cleaning. Full service (plugs, oil, filters, valves). New chain and Sprocket set. Maybe a new rear tire also. Minor fairing repair at the chin where the front wheel flings crap.

#2 - Full service on the 996 (plugs, oil, filters, belts, valves).
 

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Sigh. OK ducatiman, this year you get no protest from me for making me think about winter during our most glorious fall weather. Wait, that sounded like a protest, didn't it?

Well anyway, I guess all those front suspension parts I bought for Connie last spring will be sitting in their boxes and bags until winter now. So, front suspension upgrade, a new Conti Road Attack up front, and hopefully a rear shock upgrade will be on the agenda.
 

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Well, the EX still needs finishing touches, but the Goose in the garage must have the OEM rearsets put back on and some clipons in place of the dirtbike bars. '19 has been a weird year so far. Hardly any summer and virus after virus.
 

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My winter project list is long....but hopefully I'll get everything knocked out now that summer is almost over.



I'm hiring some contractors to pour a concrete patio in the front of my house. Also, maybe extend my driveway to one side and concrete a new walkway.



Kind of at the same time, I'm going to try to finish up the project 900SS. Still ordering parts but the high dollar parts are mostly done.



Also have to do the service on the Aprilia and the GSXR, as well as replace the coolant and coolant hoses on the GSXR.



Then a full tune up on the 996. Already got new air cleaners (OEM) and new NGK plugs. Contemplating new NGK plug wires too. Already done the oil change two weekends ago. I now have 19,700 miles on it. I got it at 17,900 miles. Changed oil for the 4th time already.



Also, if I can manage it before it starts getting cold, I'm going to get myself a small green house from Harbor Freight to use as a paint booth. 6'X6' one. Once assembled, start laying paint on the 900SS bodywork.



If that seems a lot, it is. I don't know how much of it I'm going to get done. Set your goals high....you'll never get close if you don't try :grin2: ........sean
 

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My winter project list is long....but hopefully I'll get everything knocked out now that summer is almost over.



I'm hiring some contractors to pour a concrete patio in the front of my house. Also, maybe extend my driveway to one side and concrete a new walkway.



Kind of at the same time, I'm going to try to finish up the project 900SS. Still ordering parts but the high dollar parts are mostly done.



Also have to do the service on the Aprilia and the GSXR, as well as replace the coolant and coolant hoses on the GSXR.



Then a full tune up on the 996. Already got new air cleaners (OEM) and new NGK plugs. Contemplating new NGK plug wires too. Already done the oil change two weekends ago. I now have 19,700 miles on it. I got it at 17,900 miles. Changed oil for the 4th time already.



Also, if I can manage it before it starts getting cold, I'm going to get myself a small green house from Harbor Freight to use as a paint booth. 6'X6' one. Once assembled, start laying paint on the 900SS bodywork.



If that seems a lot, it is. I don't know how much of it I'm going to get done. Set your goals high....you'll never get close if you don't try :grin2: ........sean
They're called "Stretch goals" for a reason. :)

Regarding the 996.

- Have you checked the valves yet.
- Have you done any desmo adjustments before?
- Is your 996 free of the flaking rocker syndrome?
 

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Regarding the 996.

- Have you checked the valves yet.
- Have you done any desmo adjustments before?
- Is your 996 free of the flaking rocker syndrome?
No, on number one, they were done just before I bought it.


Not exactly. I once fooled around some desmo heads from a 2 valver a number of years back. Maybe 20 or more. I only remember it being a royal PITA messing with the closer shims as split rings would fall out when you tried to remove them. Otherwise I didn't think it was super difficult....but not exactly easy either.



Lastly..uhhh..yes? I don't think any 996s are exempt. Nor any 916 after 1996 or so. Including any other model equipped with a desmoquattro from the same era. Monster or ST4 included.



My particular bike had 3 rockers replaced at the service before I bought it. I have a receipt for it so I know it was done. Also, when I removed the sump screen I found quite a bit of chrome and machine swarf in it. Indicated to me that it had never been removed and cleaned out.



From what the PO told me, it was just a part of 996 ownership. Ride it like hell, and replace the flaking rockers when they occur. If you worry about it, you'll never ride it, nor enjoy riding it when you do. His advice, not mine exactly.



I agree with him in principle but I changed oil often because I wanted to make sure I wasn't draining lots of chrome flakes out of my crankcase. So far, since the initial finding of the flakes in the sump screen, nothing in my oil.



Also, I don't buy into use the most expensive oil on the planet. Its a dry clutch engine. I doesn't matter what you use, so long as it is full synthetic and is of sufficient weight.



I use what ever is on sale at the auto parts store when I go so long as it is of the 20W50 variety. If it's Mobil 1, then that's what I'll use. If it's Valvoline, I use that. I'm not brand loyal when it comes to oil.



I change it frequently on the 996 because I want to make sure I catch a flaking rocker early on in the process and because of running oil that does not contain some sort of shear modifier through a transmission.


Those are my theories, and everyone has s different one. Oh, and oil threads are stupid so I don't want to turn this into one. :grin2: ....sean
 

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After a season of wringing the neck of that poor little ex motor with 17000 + miles it’s time for an overhaul (after the weekend of the 28th) Beyond that it’s time for fork and shock refresh and maybe cheat the rules a little and install solid motor mounts. I do have a new set of steering head bearings so I’ll probably throw those in when I do the forks.
I’ve had rear tire wear issues all season (wicked tall ridge on the rear of the tread) and I think it’s beyond the usual handling problems of the ex. So I’ll see if anything is bent or broken in the back half and hopefully have a better 2020.
While I do miss riding in the winter, motorcycles are my happy place and working on them brings me a pleasure of a different sort that makes the arrival of spring just a little more special 😁 18D1585E-92F1-40FB-8BD8-C44B5A97D35F_1568943671898.jpg 18D1585E-92F1-40FB-8BD8-C44B5A97D35F_1568943671898.jpg
 

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No, on number one, they were done just before I bought it.


Not exactly. I once fooled around some desmo heads from a 2 valver a number of years back. Maybe 20 or more. I only remember it being a royal PITA messing with the closer shims as split rings would fall out when you tried to remove them. Otherwise I didn't think it was super difficult....but not exactly easy either.



Lastly..uhhh..yes? I don't think any 996s are exempt. Nor any 916 after 1996 or so. Including any other model equipped with a desmoquattro from the same era. Monster or ST4 included.



My particular bike had 3 rockers replaced at the service before I bought it. I have a receipt for it so I know it was done. Also, when I removed the sump screen I found quite a bit of chrome and machine swarf in it. Indicated to me that it had never been removed and cleaned out.



From what the PO told me, it was just a part of 996 ownership. Ride it like hell, and replace the flaking rockers when they occur. If you worry about it, you'll never ride it, nor enjoy riding it when you do. His advice, not mine exactly.



I agree with him in principle but I changed oil often because I wanted to make sure I wasn't draining lots of chrome flakes out of my crankcase. So far, since the initial finding of the flakes in the sump screen, nothing in my oil.



Also, I don't buy into use the most expensive oil on the planet. Its a dry clutch engine. I doesn't matter what you use, so long as it is full synthetic and is of sufficient weight.



I use what ever is on sale at the auto parts store when I go so long as it is of the 20W50 variety. If it's Mobil 1, then that's what I'll use. If it's Valvoline, I use that. I'm not brand loyal when it comes to oil.



I change it frequently on the 996 because I want to make sure I catch a flaking rocker early on in the process and because of running oil that does not contain some sort of shear modifier through a transmission.


Those are my theories, and everyone has s different one. Oh, and oil threads are stupid so I don't want to turn this into one. :grin2: ....sean
Totally agree with you.

I'm fully expecting to find flakes in the oil when I do the service. I'll take it from there. Part of 996 ownership....
 

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Winter project 1: Finish my Zx7 track bike

Winter project 2?: Upgrade suspension for my street Zx7. Find and install LED gauge lights. Possible headlight retrofit so I can actually see at night.

Winter project 3?: Install LED gauge lights. Possibly install some type of fog or projector lights to increase visibility.
 

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Totally agree with you. I'm fully expecting to find flakes in the oil when I do the service. I'll take it from there. Part of 996 ownership....
Going in with that frame of mine is good. You might end up pleasantly surprised. I have a good buddy who had a 748R. At its first service, the service tech found 12 of 16 rockers flaking. This, at just 1500 miles.



That said, I know of several owners on dot MS who, way back when the flaking rockers were discovered to be more than just one guys beef with Ducati, wrote that they had not experienced any issues at all after thousands of miles riding, and several major services.



It really is just the luck of the draw. It seems that it began when Ducati changed contractors for chrome plating their rockers. Some flake, others do not. Few end up with a whole set of non-flaking rockers but it does happen.



Also, for some reason, it appears to inordinately affect the openers versus the closers, and the intakes more so than the exhausts. I don't know why this is.



I do know, Ducati "carburized" the cams. The finish is fairly coarse and black. I've read of some who took one look at their cams and removed them to polish the face of the cam lobes. Theory being that the coarse finish is what caused the rockers to flake.



Others theorize it is a lack of top end oiling, which it very well could be...but does not explain why some flake and others don't.



My own theory is that there were a bad batch of rockers, not only once but several times over so the stock on hand is mixed.



Luck of the draw as to whether yours flake or not.......images of said flaking below for those not schooled about what it means.



The gist is, so much chrome flakes off, it changes your valve clearance but also the flakes deposit in the oil pan and plug up the oil pump pick up tube. The loss of oil pressure and reduction in lubrication causing catastrophic engine failure.


Hence frequent oil changes to catch it early on if it happens.....sean









 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
WP#4 blacktop driveway resto is moving along

WP#1 Apex adjustable clip-ons just arrived, work on the 800 to commence soon.

2 fiddy Ninja carbs in the house for redo...as always, Custom Carb Service bi'niss takes full priority as we've got a rider in Kentucky patiently awaiting his carbs to get back on the road again. Everything else awaits a spell.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
250 carbs done and returned

WP #4 driveway project finished

WP #1 800 bars are up and back a few *inches*, greatly decreasing reach. Riding position vastly improved, still in process finishing details...a lever here, a switch there. This project will ultimately meet full success, finally able to comfortably ride the darn thing.

Edit: awaiting a ZX7 brake light switch and adjustable lever to complete, in the meantime performing minute final adjustments. A local test ride revealed night and day transformation from uncomfortable to fully tolerable! The SS800 saved....will go into the "rotation" once again!

Not nearly as simple as one would imagine...the Ducati design fairing wrapping back and downwards offered some unanticipated bar and control interference even using the adjustable clip-ons. Not a "breeze" by any stretch.
I've read where some owners are actually resorting to cutting the fairings for clearance! But permanent mauling is not on my radar, I've retained all parts to return to 100% stock condition, if ever required in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Rain forecast next few days...clickin' off some indoor projects...

replaced a kitchen faucet set today with a nice quality Delta unit...under sink laying on my back, half in half out of the lower cabinet working upwards into confined space. I've got some definite muscle/joint pain after required extreme contortions.
I can understand why plumbers command some huge rates. Ouch, hurtin' tonight.
 

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Rain forecast next few days...clickin' off some indoor projects...

replaced a kitchen faucet set today with a nice quality Delta unit...under sink laying on my back, half in half out of the lower cabinet working upwards into confined space. I've got some definite muscle/joint pain after required extreme contortions.
I can understand why plumbers command some huge rates. Ouch, hurtin' tonight.
Please, don't get me started on that one. As a carpenter with a Construction Supervisor license, I run the jobsites they work on and oversee all work performed. I have to know at least as much, work just as hard in conditions at least as difficult yet they can charge twice what I can, and act like prima donnas to boot. While I'm busting my ass trying to survive they're planning their retirements and their next tropical vacation.

Sorry for the threadjack, but it was pretty cathartic for me to express that. :smile2:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
My brother (the elite electrician) calls them "turd chasers". At their pay rate, I'd be willing to chase a few myself.
I'll submit they really wack the retail (homeowner) customer.


Threadjack? Not at all...good discussion, though different fo' sho'.
 

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Reminds me of the old joke....There's only 2 things you need to know to be a plumber; s**t runs downhill and payday is Friday.

Meanwhile, as the days grow shorter, I'm not worrying too much about what to do when the snow finally flies. I'm just concentrating on making the best of these beautiful fall days we are enjoying locally because with the next major change in weather its all bound to end in tears. Still spending lots of time on 2 wheels, but mostly the bicycle. The pedal pumping keeps me warm even though the air temp is pretty damn crisp.
 

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I pedaled in to work yesterday. I took a look at my weather underground forecast and it showed 48 degrees. I thought, no biggie, I'll just wear my long sleeve jersey.



I froze my damn nipples off for the first mile or so. I got about a quarter mile from my house and gave serious thought to going back for my wind vest.



Probably should have.....but at that point, cranks are turning, I'm getting into my groove so....I just pressed on. Once the weather turns, I'll probably only get in a day per week...if I'm lucky. I don't much care to ride in the rain these days.....sean
 
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