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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone out there noticed any odd traits concerning the turn-in characteristics on the S4? We've got an '02 Monster S4 that has a strange feeling to the front wheel, mostly during low speed maneuvers but also noticeable at higher speeds. For lack of a better definition, the front wheel feels as though it's trying to "fall in" to the turn, somewhat like the bike wants or tries to actually steer through the turn rather than counter-steer or lean. Tires are stock, bike has only about 4k miles on it, and nothing appears to be out of the ordinary. Any ideas?
 

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I noticed you said "we".

I infer from that that maybe you often ride with a passenger.

If so, and you have not adjusted the rear spring preload to compensate for it, you are experiencing a greatly exaggerated version of the handling quirk that many of us with S4s have noted: does not feel right somertimes in turns UNTIL you raise the rear end of the bike (It's too low)

In your case, that would mean:

1. First, adjust the preload on the spring to compensate for you and your passenger's weight (which is much more than the ONE 150lb rider that Ducati evidently assumes)

2. Raise the rear end a BIT more at a time, via the threaded rod adjustment located near your rear shock unit, until the bike feels right. Do this in small increments, and never more than a total of perhaps 15 mm from its original starting position.

Jim G
 

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Don't know if your bike came with the Pirelli Dragon Evos like mine did, but mine started feeling that way at about that mileage. Look at your front tire, there's probably not much wear in the center, and noticeable wear on the sides. That makes the tire more 'triangular' or 'elliptical' in cross section, and that makes the bike respond that way. You may also notice that it falls in on the turns, then kinda stops leaning, and you've really got to push it down to get more lean. That's from coming back up on the relatively unworn area way over near the edges of the tire.

A new front tire should cure that feeling. My S4 was real happy with a new set of Diablos at 5600 miles.
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P.S. - I think MKD's SO rides too....
 
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Discussion Starter #4
A new front tire should cure that feeling. My S4 was real happy with a new set of Diablos at 5600 miles.
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Dog you got 5600 miles on a set of tires ? ??? What am I doing wrong :( I just clicked 10.5K and spooned on my fourth set (I change tires when the wear bar is flush with the tread)
 

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Well, I try to keep my bike on the sides of the tires as much as possible... ;)

Said mostly in jest, but I don't commute on my scooter, and ride as little superslab as I can, just enough to get to the fun, twisty stuff.
The OEM Dragon Evos were at least a year and a half old before the bike turned a wheel, so they were probably a bit age-hardened. I don't ride in what little rain we get here in SoCal, so I ran a bit past the wear bars on the rears.... :-/

You're probably just having too much fun on your bike.
Please stop it ASAP. ;D ;D ;D
 

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Tires affect the feel on turn in. Tires worn on the sides can have a narrower contact patch and will be more likely to do this. I've noticed it both on the 97 M900 and on the ST2. In both cases, installing a new tire cured the problem.
 

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In a recent issue of Cycle World, they were test riding the new CBR 1000, and they said that the new stock tires that came on the bike caused the exact same symptoms that you are describing, there were two different OEM tire choices, and once they switched to the other OEM type, the problem totally dissapeared, I don't recall, but I think the tire that they were having trouble with was a Pirelli Diablo, but I could be mistaken. They said the original stock tire was too triangular shaped and caused the problems you're describing. Hope that helps.
 
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