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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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Racing a Monster

Anyone have experience racing a Monster? I'm going to be building a '98 900 Monster into a race bike this winter to compete in the CCS Lightweight class next year. Not sure how it's going to go, but it will be fun to try. I'm racing my 749R this year, but I want to get back to the Lightweight class next year where all of my friends are, but on a Ducati this time rather than the SV650 and Ninja 650 that I've had the past few years. I'll put top-shelf suspension and brakes on it, lightweight wheels, 944 kit, good heads, hotter cams and flatslide carbs. What else should I be thinking of?? How's the chassis geometry, I'm assuming it's going to need to come up a lot in the rear but not sure how to do that yet?

Jarel - CCS GP #173
'08 1098 Red Street/Track
'98 M900R Race (In Progress)
Ducati Omaha
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 02:02 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

There are some folks on here, or used to be, that have some experience racing Monsters. I've put about 3000 track miles on mine, with half or more doing the Novice Instructor gig with STT.

My opinions based on my experiences and observations of other Monsters at various tracks....

There are better platforms out there, and you will likely hear this a lot. BUT..... The early Monster chassis is based on the successful 888/851 Superbikes that competed fairly well. Personally, I like them on the track.

The stock setup and geometry has two drawbacks. The semi-upright ergos naturally put too much rider weight at the rear resulting in less feedback as to what the front is doing as you approach the limits, and causing the front to get too light on fast hard drives out of the corners which in turn increases the tendency to head shake. And as you probably know, a grown-up headshake is a tankslapper. Bad!

Clipons cure the first problem easily. The second problem is not hard, but involves setup and geometry. After over a year of tuning and tweaking, I've ended up with the rear ride height raised about 13-15mm at the axle (6-7mm at the Heim joint adjusters) and the front raised probably 6-7mm at the triple clamps. This is all after installing correct rate Ohlins springs in otherwise stock Showa adjustable forks from the early 90s and a correctly sprung Ohlins rear shock from Hard Racing(before my association with Superbike Italia thru STT). If you raise the rear only you increase the twitchy steering and tendency to headshake/tankslap. If you raise both you get added ground clearance and can fine tune the front height to get the bike to turn in just right - neither falling to the inside of the apex, nor just leaning over and refusing to turn (been there, done both of those).

Speaking of ground clearance, the early Monsters are bad about dragging hard parts at the stock ride height. Aftermarket rearsets are a great help, but not necessary. Last year I was at a STT Limited Endurance Day where most of the staff was there just to practice (no Novice classes at LEDs) at Little Talledega GP on the old track layout and just grinding my knee pucks down because that's how that track was and is now. One of the other staff who normally rides his 999 brought a Monster - all stock - that he had just picked up. With no adjustments or anything he was kicking my ass by over 4 seconds per lap just by getting his body off more to avoid scraping and carrying more corner speed. Since then he's set it up just for the track and I only see him when he laps me on a fast track like Barber. One of these days if I keep instructing past this season and don't trade the Monster and sell the SS track mule - then I may spring for some rearsets for the M900.

The bottom line is that I think Monsters are good platforms for that class of racing and with a little setup and good riding they can do well.

Mark J<br />95 M900; **SOLD**<br />Desmo Owners Club card # 00203441<br />88 YSR 50; **SOLD**<br />92 Ducati 900 SS; track bike. Nichols stuff; FCRs; Dyna Coils; Air Tech retro NCR fairing; custom retro tailpiece; shorty CF cans; etc.; **SOLD**<br />99 BMW F 650 - Hey! It was built in Italy, too! By Aprilia for BMW!<br />83 BMW R80 ST<br />2000 Triumph 955 Daytona for the track only for sale cheap - PM me.
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 05:31 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Im also thinking about racing a monster as I have an "extra" that Im rebuilding right now. Dont really know how much Ill like actually being competitive so I figure rather than buy a new bike this is the cheapest way for me to go, plus its the only bike I have that's not my wifes or less than a liter. Anyway... already have the rearsets and clipons but dont really know what to do about catch pan or fairings. Are the fairings even required?? Also is there a better more adjustable rear shock that can go on to a M750 @ ebay prices??
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 07:29 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Quote:
Originally Posted by cookinDuc
Im also thinking about racing a monster as I have an "extra" that Im rebuilding right now. Dont really know how much Ill like actually being competitive so I figure rather than buy a new bike this is the cheapest way for me to go, plus its the only bike I have that's not my wifes or less than a liter. Anyway... already have the rearsets and clipons but dont really know what to do about catch pan or fairings. Are the fairings even required?? Also is there a better more adjustable rear shock that can go on to a M750 @ ebay prices??
You don't need fairings.

A full DP belly pan will work for a catch pan.

Look for an Ohlins on ebay. (hard find cheap though)

cycle-cat clip-ons, corbin seat, dp lowmount aluminum cans, 15/41, dynojet stage 2, drilled airbox, spa tach/ speedo, supersport fender, race tech front, ohlins rear,dp carbon tail, braided lines, 100w H4<br /><br /><br /><br />&quot; Of all the things I&#039;ve lost; It&#039;s my mind I miss most &quot;<br /><br />By the time you can make ends meet, they move the ends
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 07:45 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Ohilins from another bike or just aftermarket that somebody's parting thanks for the info!
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 08:04 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Quote:
Originally Posted by cookinDuc
Ohilins from another bike or just aftermarket that somebody's parting thanks for the info!
Pretty much monster specific.

cycle-cat clip-ons, corbin seat, dp lowmount aluminum cans, 15/41, dynojet stage 2, drilled airbox, spa tach/ speedo, supersport fender, race tech front, ohlins rear,dp carbon tail, braided lines, 100w H4<br /><br /><br /><br />&quot; Of all the things I&#039;ve lost; It&#039;s my mind I miss most &quot;<br /><br />By the time you can make ends meet, they move the ends
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-04-2007, 11:24 AM
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Re: Racing a Monster

I have a Penske rear on my streetbike and like it tons!

I tracked the bike a few times before i started racing SV's. As Mark mentioned, jack the ride height up on the rear. I used the heim joints plus the ride height adjuster on the Penske.

I have the 944 kit, FCR's, DynaCoils, VeeTwo adjustable cam pulleys, and Sil-Moto high mount slip ons. The bike is tuned for more "street" riding and puts down 82hp and 72 ft/lbs of torque. I didn't touch the heads at all.

I would look for an exhaust header that offers better clearance as when you really push you might touch down the end of the header where the slip-on's fit into. I did on mine.

They're great bikes (air cooled Ducs). A very good friend i race against has a Duc 800ss that is SB built and is kicking some ass with it. Donny Unger at DucPond racing built it. She's a runner.

Rugbymook93<br /><br />1999 M944<br />2007 Triumph 675 (WERA Expert #93)<br />2002 KTM 400exc Dirt<br />2004 KTM 450 Supermotard (SMUSA #93)<br />2001 Suzuki SV650 Race/Trackbike (WERA Expert #93)
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-04-2007, 09:03 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Racing a Monster

Thanks guys, sounds like this will be do-able. I don't mind being outgunned as long as the bike can be set up to handle well and provide good front tire feel. I'll crank the ride height up and get a good shock for sure, and I'm looking at some Ohlins forks for the front. Does anyone make billet triples for the older Monsters? Who makes rearsets for the older Monsters?

I raced on a 69HP Ninja 650 last year and it was plenty competitive since it handled so well, even though some of the SV's were 80+HP in the same class. If I can get the M900 up over 85HP and get it to turn well it should be a lot of fun. My only problem is my teammate on a Paul Smart!

Jarel - CCS GP #173
'08 1098 Red Street/Track
'98 M900R Race (In Progress)
Ducati Omaha
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-05-2007, 10:24 PM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Quote:
Originally Posted by jarelj
My only problem is my teammate on a Paul Smart!
A very good friend of mine races a Paul Smart against me. It KILLS me on the straights!

I love the Paul Smart and thought hard about racing one this year.

Here i am on the SV chasing him down last weekend at the WERA event at BeaveRun.
[img width=600 height=418]http://k53.pbase.com/g6/05/313905/2/84932150.tsEIdtkD.jpg[/img]

The bike is one of the most fun i've ever ridden.

Rugbymook93<br /><br />1999 M944<br />2007 Triumph 675 (WERA Expert #93)<br />2002 KTM 400exc Dirt<br />2004 KTM 450 Supermotard (SMUSA #93)<br />2001 Suzuki SV650 Race/Trackbike (WERA Expert #93)
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-06-2007, 07:38 AM
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Re: Racing a Monster

Looking good there rugby.
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