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Ok, looking at purchasing a 2000 Ducati Monster Dark.. 6200 miles on it. I am wondering what the general costs are for maintaining a bike like this? Ducati owners of course say, "BUY IT! YOU'LL LOVE IT!".. but kind of avoid the cost part of it.. Jap owners say, "You'll pay $1000 for a bolt"..

Where is the truth here? How much does your average oil change cost you? (Both do it yourself and having the dealer do it).. What other maintenance is needed, how often, and how much? I know valve adjustments are important..

I guess what I am looking for is the average yearly amount people are paying for upkeep on their Ducati Monsters.. I want honest answers, if its a lot, tell me..
 

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If you have to ask you can't afford it....
 

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Also depends ALOT on how much you ride. If you put 12k on your bike a year then yeah... a valve adjustment every six months is a nice little chunk of change. Oil changes are the same as every other bike. Just depends how often you change it..... 12k a year would be 4 oil changes for me. Also at 12k you need the belts replaced so factor that in once a year as well. Now all that being said..... theres very FEW of us that have a chance to put that many miles on our bikes a year. I would figure 6k would be the MAX for most of us....and what do you know... you just cut your yearly maintenance costs in half. Ducati maintenance costs are blow WAY WAY WAY out of proportion...... Labor rates are labor rates... what the average? $75hr nowa days. Valve adjustments arent expensive for parts... its the labor. And I would think that adjusting the valves on a air cooled ducati (4 valves total) would take less time or about the same to adjust than 16 valves or eight on the DOHC Jap bikes. And to top it off... on a Monster theres no bodywork to take off either. I think the problem lies in taking your Ducati to a Jap bike mechanic who is intimidated and unskilled in adjusting desmodromic valves and therefore has to make it seem like its a super complicated ordeal, when a trained skilled Ducati mechanic can probably do it with his eyes closed. Just my .03
 

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Another consideration besides average shop rates, is that if you are capable and inclined to do your own maintenance and tend to keep up with little things like cable lubing, chain cleaning and adjustment, etc., you tend to catch a lot of little things that can be fixed cheaply before they manifest themselves in catastrophic failure.

If you have basic mechanical ability and can follow a manual (and get supporting info from the great folks on this board), Monsters are not terribly hard to maintain. Immediately after I got mine, I picked up a Haynes Manual and went to work on all the 12K mile service (belts, valve adjust, oil, change fluids and so on). Probably about $200 in parts. Some more money for tools - but I'm a tool junkie. You only need a few special tools, and the Haynes manual outlines very well what you should have for a given level of work.

That was last year. This year continues to be normal wear items. Original chain and sprockets just replaced at about 14K and in a couple of weeks I'll check the valves and hope for 3K more miles before buying any more shims. At that time I will also cure a slight oil leak behind the clutch with about $45 worth of parts. Soon after that I'll be replacing the clutch pack (which looks to be the original still hanging in at 15K).

A lot of folks agree that at least the 2V models need fewer valve adjustments after about 15K miles. Even if you don't want to tackle valve adjusting, checking them every 3K miles is not too hard, and if they are in spec, you save some money over paying shop rates to check them. Plus you know exactly what the status is.

In a nutshell, Monsters require a little more attention on a regular basis, but in the long run maintenance costs don't have to be astronomical if you stay on top of little things.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Very informative and detailed replies.. thanks.. What "belts" are there on a Monster? I currently have a Suzuki GS500E, which is an air-cooler vtwin.. It certainly does not have any belts on it..

But I have torn apart my carburators and cleaned them, replaced fuel lines, changed the oil, etc.. so I am pretty technically inclined..

As for the "If you have to ask you can't afford it".. SHAME ON YOU! heh.. But seriously, I can certainly afford the costs.. but the question is, are the costs WORTH IT? Rich people don't get rich by wasting money.. I'm not rich yet, but would like to get there.. and if it costs too much to maintain, I would be better off getting something else.. because I don't like to throw money away.
 

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Oil changes cost less than $20.00 when I do them myself. That includes the price of a genuine Ducati oil filter, the two crush washers, and the oil I put in. I do them every 3000 miles when I'm not in for a service.

Most places will do the 6000 and 18,000 mile service for around $300.00. The 12,000 mile service, since it includes changing the belts is closer to $600.00. That should also be what happens at the 24,000 mile service.

I haven't spent much else in the way of maintenance other than for tires (not counting the fork revalving that I'll be paying for next week, of course). I'm lucky to get 4000 miles from a rear tire and 6000 from a front. One of my rear tires was completely worn out at 2500 miles. Of course, some Monster riders can go three or four times as far before wearing out their tires, but we all know that they ride like wimps. ;D
 

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The costs are worth it, but it sounds like your a mech. inclined so go for it! You won't be disappointed. :) You will have a big family here to support you.
 

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That future Italian mistresse of yours is well worth it...
Enjoy the ride ;D
 

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Hang around this board a little longer Crimson, and you'll learn the RIGHT questions to ask.

Maintence costs, schmaintenance costs!

It's mod fever that'll get you ;D It's a very rare monster owner who keeps his/her ride even close to stock. And it's not a matter of budgeting it into the purchase price. It goes on, and on, and on.

In two years and 10,000 miles of owning my bike, I've probably spent about three times as much on accessories and mods as I've spent on maintenance/repairs, and that doesn't even count the roughly $1500 dollars worth of DP stuff the previous owner had put on!

I spent the day Wednesday at BCM for my once-a-year service (I ride 5-6k/yr). That was a 12k service plus $130 to fix an oil leak. I droped $1150, half of that was optional! I got RaceTech springs and Gold Valves :). That's a job most of us wouldn't take on at home!
 

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I concur; the mods are what gets ya!!! ;D :D ;) :) :p

Never thought i could spend so much $ on a cycle! Had a BMW for 6 years; never touched a thing on it (and they are expensive to maintain too!).

Overall, this mod "bug" is a fever. Fun fever. To make a bike one's own is definitely what it's all about. Buying a Duc is the first step; it is a very individual thing to do - very much a statement about who you are, what you are about, and the attitude you wish to set forth. I am unique. So is my bike. My first car, at the age of 21 in the mid 1980's, was a 1967 Corvair! My first bike at age 28, a 1966 Triumph Bonnieville.
If I wanted normal, I would have got a nova and a Suzuski (or sumthin!)

Anyway. A duc is a choice. A good choice. I own a bike because just having one is fun and fun is what I am all about.

I maintain my duc like a baby and keep the mods coming cuz I enjoy the process, and the result!

Have fun...

scooby ;D
 

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I spent the day Wednesday at BCM for my once-a-year service (I ride 5-6k/yr). That was a 12k service plus $130 to fix an oil leak. I droped $1150, half of that was optional! I got RaceTech springs and Gold Valves :). That's a job most of us wouldn't take on at home!

Sweet! Have you had a chance to evaluate how much nicer it is now? Oh, did you get a price on the 944 kit? I also need a 12K service soon (like yesterday actually) and I wanna head back to BCM. If I can swing the cash I'd like to get the 944 done at that time too.
 

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I didn't ask about the price on the 944. I know that now's not the time. Why ask?

As far as the fork work, I really liked the ride blasting back from Laconia at 100 mph!

But riding to work and back yesterday, I thought the compression damping might be set too high. Ride seemed choppy. No matter, that's why we have adjustable forks. Just gotta play with it.

The one thing that had me a bit concerned is that with the .90 springs they put in, the static sag is just right with no preload dialed in at all. I'd feel a little better if I had room to move either up or down. Basically, I now have semi-adjustable preload. Course the chance of me LOOSING weight are not particularly high.

I told 'em that I weighed 185. They called me a lying sack of ...Well not in those words. They got out their scale which put me at 194.

Anyway, we'll see, but maybe I'd have been better off with .85s on it.
 

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Crimson, You have to get a ducati. I played with Jap bikes before moving to Spain. I bought a ducati on a whim and have never looked back. You can argue all day about costs and maintanence intervals, but when it comes down to it a Ducati has more heart and soul than a Jap bike could ever dream of having. Take a ride on the DUCK, you will be more noticed than you ever thought possible. People here the rumble and the JUST have to look. The same cannot be said about your GS500. Do it and I promise you your life will be different. If course this is only my opinion which my wife tells me every day is sh!t.... Wait till she finds out the new MS4R is on order to be here in NOV
 

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Michael Moore's list is a good indicator of typical costs. I've been afraid to total up my parts yet, but my list will look a lot like his list when I do, except for the extra expense of replacing a flat tire.

And like a lot of folks have said, it's the mods that will kill you. I won't even mentally estimate what I've spent on mods and accessories. But, it's still cheaper and way more fun than a therapist!
 
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really the major costs are associated with dealer service... and of course ducati oem parts if you need replacements. but that's the same with any make. fortunately there are a good number of aftermarket vendors out there that can easily replace most consumables (chains, sprockets, brake pads, rotors, clutch packs) for about half ducati oem. there's also a lot of classifieds that can help out on used parts... here, the ducati index, and sometimes ebay.

some ducati aftermarket parts are more expensive than that found for the big four but that's probably due to the lower volume of ducati's out there. exhaust slip-ons would be an example.

if you do a lot of the maintenance yourself you can really cut the impact to your wallet. not accounting for my time my last 2valve 12k service interval cost me about $76 for new belts... my last 2valve 6k service interval cost me about $12 for two closer shims and $5 for a valve guide seal. of course i've spent some cash on the tools both standard (liquid gasket, thread locker, anti-sieze, metric wrenches, sockets, allans, bike stands, etc.) and ducati specific (engine turning tool, haynes manuals, valve video). but i'm a nuckle dragging tin bender at heart so tools are as cool to me as the bike. there's not a whole lot of ducati specific tools though, and many you can make yourself. not inlcuding taxes or unusual circumstances dealer 12k service will usually be in the $400-$550 range, and the dealer 6k service will be in the $250-$400 range. add about another $150-$200 if you own a four valver.

oil changes are cheap and easy... oem filters can usually be bought in bulk of 12 for about $8-$9 each... oil is what you want to spend on it (for me it's about two cases of mobil 1 every three oil changes which comes to $50). it breaks down to $25-$30 every 3000 miles for me. the dealer 600mile service (basically amounts to an oil change at "most" dealerships) will run $200-$250.

i've never really got to experience the good fortune of being near a "good" dealer... in fact the dealers i've had experiences with have cause me to do my own service because you just pay them to screw your bike up. i can do that on my own thank you.

i'm finally going to shell out money for a nice bead breaker for mounting tires, i got sick of chipped paint or dinged rims from shops... between that and the static balancer i'll spend about $300 on tools, but with two bikes that i have (and hopefully a third soon) at $30 a hand carried wheel to mount and balance or saving $150 per tire purchase it'll pay for itself soon enough.

i like doing my own maintenance though; it allows me that zen time to relax and wrench. it also provides me with the independence i like. to others it's a bother so they like paying someone else to do it. you don't have to be rich to ride a ducati (although i'm sure it helps) just motivated. bikes cost money... there's no way around it.
 

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Thanks guys that is some good information.
 
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