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Discussion Starter #1
Didn't see anything in the search, so here goes:

2nd-hand bike, had about 2+ years, and never gave fuel smell much thought until recently, when I noticed acceleration hesitates at lower (<5k) rpm. Tried one thing after another: new plugs, cleaning the injectors, tensioning the belts (went with a 5mm drop based on another post I saw).
Not only is the lag still there, I there is a very strong fuel odor coming from the Horizontal exhaust while none at all comes from the Vertical. It's a stock setup minus the catalyst.

The other stuff needed attention anyway (plug gaps way off, injectors could've been cleaner, belts were wicked slack), so I figured the next thing would be to check valve clearance/shims, but is there something else I should be checking first?

TIA
 

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Synchronize the injectors ? Valve adjustment ? Did you actually clean the injectors or just run some cleaner through them ? You don’t really know if you have a problem until you do all the maintenance up to date and it still doesn’t run right. Until then you just have a Ducati that needs to be taken care of.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
At the risk of sounding defensive, I feel like you're being rather aggressive. After all, taking care of this Ducati through maintenance is what I'm actually trying to do. It doesn't see a lot of miles since I'm out of the country a lot and it's not my daily ride, and I'm not going to just hand it over to a shop without understanding what can or can't be done myself or throwing parts at it without having a baseline and understanding how those parts work to make the bike run right. I just thought it would be great if someone chiming in would say, "This is usually caused by that," or, "Before you do this, do that," rather than challenge me for knowing if I have a problem (when I explained what I'd say are reasonable problems) and for not taking care of the bike when that again is precisely what I am trying to do.

All that out of the way, I have not synchronized the injectors, as I was under the impression that was more for getting maximum potential from the bike, not getting it running well. If I'm wrong, then okay, I'll look into it. Same deal for cleaning the injectors: I ran cleaner through them, comparing their spray patterns. Seeing that there was no significant difference, I judged that this was enough to at least verify them as not being contributive to the issue at hand.
Last is the valve adjustment, which is kinda the point of this post. Before I jump into adjusting the valves, I wanted to know if there was anything else I could be looking at, first. Say, perhaps old belts re-tensioned really do cause similar symptoms. Perhaps I have a bent valve. Or maybe that's not likely, but I don't have any previous experience with that, but hey, I'll do a leakdown test this week and find out. Until and even before then, I still welcome anyone else's wisdom on the matter.
Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Also forgot to mention the clutch... I don't know that I can trust the seller for when he claims to have done maintenance or even the shops he sent it to for work: one time I started it up, initiating a raucous clattering in the clutch box; turns out it appears that someone put a foreign object in there, because opening the box revealed something like a car valve spring, too big to fit through the oil port and completely unlike anything in the factory service manuals. I took the clutch pack apart, checked for wear and damage and everything seemed to be within spec, so I don't think my hesitant acceleration is a friction plate issue. I also bled the clutch line to be sure.
 

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You’re being over sensitive. Are you a millennial? So many times when people have a “problem “ with there motorcycle it’s just lack of maintenance. When you buy a used motorcycle you should get all the maintenance and adjustments up to date. It’s a Ducati, not a Honda. It’s very difficult to help someone with a ” problem” when they haven’t done basic maintenance to eliminate the possibility of something simple. The clutch thing is certainly interesting but probably a separate issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm Gen-X, not that I think that would matter, Boomer. It's the lack of time, money, and opportunity plus what I believe is a useful desire to locate a specific problem area while actually conducting "basic maintenance to eliminate the possibility of something simple" that prompts me to avoid a shotgun approach to working on a machine. Doesn't matter to me if it's a Ducati or a Honda. Never had a Honda, but I've worked on Mazdas, Audis, VWs, ALFAs, and Suzukis the same way and am simply asking for free wisdom worth its weight in bytes from those who would like to help in the process without introducing character biases.

The clutch ridiculousness is certainly unrelated to the fuel smell, but having never seen motorcycle clutch plates before, having no other Monster to compare it to, never burnt a clutch, never driven a car with a burnt clutch, nor had a wet clutch before, I've no personal feel for whether this is normal and can't guess if the acceleration lag is related and so don't think it wise to replace plates that have no apparent issue, but once I've done a leakdown check before attempting a valve adjustment, I will probably try that next.


You’re being over sensitive. Are you a millennial? So many times when people have a “problem “ with there motorcycle it’s just lack of maintenance. When you buy a used motorcycle you should get all the maintenance and adjustments up to date. It’s a Ducati, not a Honda. It’s very difficult to help someone with a ” problem” when they haven’t done basic maintenance to eliminate the possibility of something simple. The clutch thing is certainly interesting but probably a separate issue.
 

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Sorry , but I had no problem helping at all until you “risked sounding defensive. “ Other than that, everything else is pretty common.
Consider this: If you did have your maintenance up to date it would narrow the possibilities of what might be the problem . For instance, you mentioned cleaning the injectors. Now, if that meant removing them and sending them to a pro, I’m going to figure they’re probably not clogged . But if you put half a can of 99 cent carb cleaner through it I’m not so sure I can rule out injectors.
If it ran well until you worked on it, that’s also common, but it helps to know EXACTLY what you did. So it’s irritating for you to give sketchy half details about the bike and not expect questions. Or expect people to be happy about asking for details that shoul have been included in the first place.
Don’t come on the forum with an attitude. Boomers don’t care.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I think I've given some pretty reasonable details, and answered your request for more, but they don't meet your expectations and anyway, as you said, I lost you at the "risk of sounding defensive" already. I've met plenty of fine boomers who do care and have been plenty helpful. You accuse me of coming on the forum with an attitude, but your first response was to criticize with a grudge and accusatory skepticism, only to follow up with remarks against a demographic that has nothing to do with me, so thanks but no thank, yours is help I wouldn't want anyway.
 

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That works out really well for both of us.
 

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I'm thinking check coils and leads as well, New plugs? check mixture by visual inspection of new plugs, is one running rich? swap coils, any change?
Never heard of synching injectors, they can be matched using flow machine, just replace bad ones. Maybe the reference is to synching the throttle bodies?? ie. throttle opening. usually though, you would have bad idle and initial take off splutter.

Have you done a compression test, you did say a leakdown one so maybe the same thing.

When I first did valve adjustment on a Ducati, (old bevel 900ss) I noticed the closers were way too loose, not closing properly. So I removed the heads to check valves and more important, the valve seats. Much easier with heads off and not that much more work. I found the seats were a little burnt and leaked fuel when checking, pour a little fuel in ports with closed valves. A little time to lap the valves in properly, (used sucker stick) and set shims correctly.
good video to adjust here; www.exactUK.com - DucatiTech Instructional Video's

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi Ronski, thanks for the reply.
The plugs are new and don't have so many miles that there is anything glaringly obvious, though they look roughly the same now. I'll look into the coil and lead swap. That sounds like a simple enough thing to check off. I pressurized the injectors the cheap-ass way with some hoses and cans and watched the spray pattern. After an initial odd pattern in one, they both look to spray quite evenly (though I did not use a high speed camera to verify how matched they might be).

The throttle openings were clean, though I will have to look into how to sync the throttle bodies - that's a new one on me. Indeed, the engine refuses to idle at 1250 without assistance from the choke cable and only idles at 800 or so when it's really hot. There are times during takeoff when the engine just plain dies, though that may have been from a bad reg/rec and wiring (both since replaced and occurs less frequently).

I'll save pulling the heads and lapping valves for way down the road, as that's something I've never needed to do and sounds like it deserves some more detailed guidance than just winging it.

In the meantime, I'll be checking pressure/leakdown, swapping wires and coils, then trying the TB sync. Came across some of those vids before, but having them all in one place is handy :)

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
One other thing RE:idle, there are idle bypass adjustment screws that I haven't mucked with, but their covering caps are off. Again, I've never had to mess with this, but my gut (and lack of chatter online) tells me I shouldn't fiddle with those and they'd be a stopgap 'fix' at best, but if you have anything to add in that regard, I'd love to hear it!
 

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As to idle, something wrong there. Yes, these are idle 'air bleed screws' and yes, mess with them and it can muck things up. A quick check is to first mark position of each screw, then turn in counting the turns, they both should be close, mine are one full turn out from stop, minor adjustments only if you have co testing stuff. changing these can also affect the balance. The bleed air screws can affect mixture above idle too, so read on.
Firstly I have 2001 900 ie. I have used a guy named Brad Black here in Australia, who has written countless docs. on Ducati tuning. There is a great one he did for the 900 ie models, yours maybe different, but it details how to set up base idle, TPS and balance. The balance is simple, a length of clear plastic tube and some adaptors which can be got on ebay. fill tube 3/4 with red transmission fluid and adjust the balance.
an interesting read. here; BikeBoy.org - Ducati 2V Non Linear TPS Baseline Adjustment
many other detailed info on his site, maybe something similar for you model, but I'm sure from memory the guide included the S2R.
hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
[This is more of a note to myself than anything else] :

  • Checked the bleed screws like you said for the first time and the Vertical was about 1.1 turns from closed while the Horizontal was like 1.9. Nearly a full turn difference.
  • After a 10 minute ride, turned both screws about the same, ~1.2 from closed, then rode home. Seems to be a lot less fuel smell. Backed them both out to ~2 turns and I can finally hold idle without using choke, but you can clearly hear air whistling into the TB, so this is clearly not right.
  • Pulled the plugs: V looked good, but H's insulator was sooty and the arm was a tad wet.
Not going to jump to any conclusions until I can get the compression/leak tested, a manometer kit made up, TB balanced, swapped wires/coils (does this make such a big difference? It's not like there's no power at all...).

Or should I be doing the valve adjustment before the TB balance?
 

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On mine, it's easier to remove airbox to get at balance adjuster, but I've seen guys do it without. While airbox out and doing it, may as well get to tappets to check. Follow Brads method, even though you don't have co meter etc. Changing one thing affects others.

Seems it is running rich, possible, some one has backed out one of the airbleeds to compensate.
That brings up another thing, Is the engine Temp sensor OK? it's on the H cylinder rear on mine and easy to check with ohm meter when cold and hot. A faulty sensor would make it run rich all the time, ECU thinking it's cold and richening the mixture.

Just rechecked my air bleeds, 1, 1/2 turns out, not one as previously mentioned.
 

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Ronski, six days and NotaDouche still didn’t bother to tell you what he found after you helped him. Still think he’s Not a Douche ?
 

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Duc96cr.
well mate, I know you try and help more than most, some people don't even reply when we try to help.
It's just the way things are. forums are a great thing, thanks to yourself and others.
I did learn from other help forums, that an argument is pointless, yes frustrating, when we are just helping, but, I try to ignore.
And yes, all my suggestions would have been covered in a decent service, but some choose to work it out for themselves, as we did.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Ronski, six days and NotaDouche still didn’t bother to tell you what he found after you helped him. Still think he’s Not a Douche ?
Douche96cr, what is your problem? Some other guy posts about his salvaged monster, says nothing about whether or not he did any of the things on your checklist, and you're nothing but helpful suggestions. Here, I have to jump through your hoops and you give me nothing but grief? Don't think so? Check the link. I joined in to give a pointer, too and guess what? No response. Do I care? No. I just hope it helped him and left it at that. Know what I else? I added info on a years-old thread that hadn't been updated just to input what I thought was useful, usable information even if it wouldn't help me and the OP probably wouldn't be around to say 'thanks'. So again, please leave me alone, because some of us haven't had the time to do everything on my own checklist, while before that HAD been replying with updates. And hey, I had asked a question that wasn't answered, so figured he had left it at that, too. Again, no big deal. But if you're still so burned up by people not updating, just go back to that other dude and harass him for an update instead of me.

Ronski,
I appreciate the update on your airbleeds, that does help. Another half turn closer to my setting, the less crazy my settings are.
As you said, I am working things through for myself, because that's the best way to learn and figure out nuances to a new machine (not to mention less costly -- at least in the short term). To that end, I avoided buying an expensive leadown kit and made one, including adapters from an old spark plug, and verified that compression was top-notch. I'm now in the process of hand-building a manometer (and 5mm/0.8 adapters) so that I can tune the TB balancer, but haven't yet finished, so haven't gotten at the linkage, though I see it from outside.

My understanding from memory is that after checking belt tension and warming up the bike, I take the airbox, etc off, hook up the manometer, I close up the bleeders, start up again, balance vacuum at a forced 1250 idle, then adjust the bleeders in parallel to get a proper 1250 idle, then go back to the balancer, back and forth until everything is smooth. There was mention about setting trim and I think zeroing the idle stop or something, but I don't remember seeing a full conclusion to that thread. In any case, mine does not have a trim screw and the sensor has no adjustment (it has no rotation allowance). Of course, if all of this has to be repeated after doing a valve service, I should just go ahead and do the valve service first, though it should be easy enough to balance first and seems to be a good data point besides.

As for the air temp sensor: I couldn't find a reference for what the readings on the temp sensor should be and in any case, the digital gauge on the cluster appears to be working fine, as does the data coming off jpdiag, though that indicates 'water temperature'.

I'll report more incrementally if you like, but I'd sooner do a bunch of things more conclusively that would make for less scrolling through useless chatter for future owners. /Cheers
 

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Just pulling your chain because you showed me right away you had issues. You didn‘t disappoint .
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Man, you need something better to do with your retirement than calling names and making personal issues on a nameless technical message board.
Go ride your Harley on an icy road.
 
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