Are Ducatis more expensive to maintain than Japanese bikes?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by indr, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. kaput13

    kaput13 motophilosopher

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    Bingo.
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  2. BryanCO

    BryanCO CO Rider

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    Yep, 2006 BMW M3 e46 with the s54 engine. Last year of the NA inline six...
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  3. hippiebrian

    hippiebrian Long timer

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    This. The reason I shy away from European bikes in general is the parts availability. BMW's not as bad as most, but still there are a lot of parts that have to take the slow boat from Germany. Ducati and Aprilia are famous for "parts have to be shipped from the factory".

    Japanese and American bikes, however, are usually readily available. In any major city there are probably enough parts available to build a bike in your garage!

    Up to you, really. There are quirks, but then even though I'm not much of a sport bike guy, every time I hear a Duc, I wet myself. Just a little...
    #43
  4. Lookforexit

    Lookforexit Been here awhile

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    This age old question really is not about maintenance, any more exotic bike is going to be quite a bit more money to keep strait. It is about how you see motorcycles. I've always been a Japanese buyer, but partially due to having run a shop and been on the inside. My old service manager used to work on Duc's all Japanese, Aprilia the whole bit. He indoctrinated me out of Ducati love.

    If you are into the Italian passion thing, sure it's worth it, my best friend owns a Fogarty replica Monster and practically blows one every time he gets on, he also wouldn't own the practial machines I choose (FZ1, VFR's etc) to save his life.

    On the other side I have never had to worry about condensation under my dials of a 10k machine.

    Pick your poison!
    #44
  5. Chuckracer

    Chuckracer Jerkus Maximus

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    That's pretty accurate right there. That's why I own a 900SS for when I want to fawn and tinker, and a KLR for when I don't.
    #45
  6. AviatorTroy

    AviatorTroy Long timer

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    Yeah I really have to say that as long as you can work on your own bike Maintence costs aren't that big of an issue. There are plenty of places out there besides Ducati that can get you the parts that you need, and fast. Ca cycleworks, emsduc.com, and monsterparts to name a few are excellent resourses.

    Every 6k oil and filter, you might need a shim or two at 10$, every 12k belts at 80bucks, I don't consider that too bad in the grand scheme of things since every 4k miles I need to throw on a 300$ set of tires anyway.

    Don't drop it though, for that would just about total a 900ss/sp, or a 916/996/998. Monsters are definitely way more robust.


    With all that, I would also have to say that a Ducati makes a wonderful second bike but not a great only bike.
    #46
  7. dman

    dman Been here awhile

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    Newer 4 valve Ducatis, especially the sport bikes with bodywork and electronics are complex bikes and will be expensive to maintain. But I think the same is true for equivalent Japanese bikes. Not sure why everyone gets worried about Desmo valve adjustment ... on my VStrom, a valve check requires a huge amount of disassembly just to check the clearances. The same job on an air-cooled Multistrada, which is arguably not unlike a VStrom, is much easier. Look, my 900 Monster costs about $0.10 per mile just for gasoline. A $100 pair of belts every 12K miles is peanuts by comparison. And the 2V belts are easy to change. I'm hot and cold about my Monster (probably true for any bike after 14 years) but cost of ownership is not a factor.

    -dman
    #47
  8. fifthcircle

    fifthcircle Beer Knurd

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    I did the valve check/adjust on my vstrom last year. Pain. In. The. Ass!

    Sold it and got a new monster 796. Is it wrong that I am looking forward to the 7,500mi mark, so I can have a good reason to tear apart my monster?

    I don't think maintenance will be the expensive part. Accessories will cost me much more. Looking at exhaust and ECU options at the moment... :)

    Sent from my fat thumbs on a small touch screen.
    #48
  9. slowpoke69

    slowpoke69 Been here awhile

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    I 2nd the griso, dead sexy machine! I'd also buy a Ducati ST2 or 3, versatile, handle well, they make ALMOST all the right noises too!:evil:evil

    The new Guzzi 1400 is pretty sweet too, but she sounds sweet with pipes!:wink:
    #49
  10. duckman

    duckman co conspirator

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    my Paso has belts that should be changes every 2 or 3 years, and my sv uses gears and chains to do the same thing. along with a wet clutch the rubber belts make for a very quiet engine. sure you'll spend more to maintain a ducati but so what.
    #50
  11. OneTraveller

    OneTraveller Social Reject

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    My 2013 Multi has a 7,500 mile oil change interval, 18,000 mile valve adjustment interval, and requires new belts every 5 years. I have two local dealers, and both are good people.

    As long as nothing major breaks, it'll be far cheaper to maintain then my 1150RT was. My BMW had a wide variety of problems, including a defective speedometer and a leaking output shaft seal.

    Mike
    #51
  12. lrutt

    lrutt SILENCE.....i kill you

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    absolutely not on the 2v bikes. if you can't change the belts on one of those then you shouldn't be riding. Valves are no problem either. Just step by step.

    A HELL of a lot easier than the new sport bikes that require pulling the cam to change shims...now that is BS.

    My first service on my 12 year old M900 I put in the MBP collets, bought an EMS shim kit. check again at 15k and changed 1 shim. Piece of cake.
    #52
  13. lrutt

    lrutt SILENCE.....i kill you

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    Have you checked the valves on that SV yet? I helped my son do his, 6 of 8 were too tight. Suzuki dealer had no shims in stock :huh Had to pull the cams to swap them out, drain the radiator, remove the tank, etc. etc. etc.

    On my M900 I unlatch the tank and prop it up, pull the plastic belt covers off, valve caps off, and bingo, check and change. No problem. Took about 1/3 the time max to do a service on my duc complete with belt change that work on that Suz.
    #53
  14. ohgood

    ohgood Long timer

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    (going to keep asking this until someone says why)


    why don't people just stone their shims smaller ?
    #54
  15. corndog67

    corndog67 Banned

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    I had an S4, with the 916 4 valve engine. I never had an issue. The valves didn't move in the 5 1/2 years I had it. Changed the belts every 2 years. A guy came to my house and showed me how to adjust the valves, a whole lot less than I was expecting. Lots of horror stories out there about Ducati maintenance, but in my experience, it's from people that have never ridden or owned a Ducati.

    The 4 valvers are way faster than the 2 valves, that is why I bought the water cooled 4 valve. And I was not disappointed in the least. I'd buy another one. Quality components, decent build quality.
    #55
  16. fifthcircle

    fifthcircle Beer Knurd

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    Because most dealers will swap shims for free. Lots of people will sand shims down, but that takes time and a good measuring device (micrometer). Why bother. :D


    BMW...not a Japanese bike ;)
    #56
  17. duckman

    duckman co conspirator

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    suzuki has nothing in stock except quad and jet skies parts so thats nothing new, as for the sv i make allowances for it the way i make allowances for my ducaties. these are the bikes i've chosen to live with so you work around thier problems.
    #57
  18. RhinoVonHawkrider

    RhinoVonHawkrider Long timer

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    So did U get it?

    If not, I would consider a Honda Superhawk, RC51, or a Suzuki TL1000

    all V-Twins.

    Duc's are very nice, but as U seen written here, they can be expensive to have a dealer maintain.

    I own a '02 Superhawk aka VTR1000f. I love it. But like all motos, not everyone is perfect. Motor is bullet proof. Stock they're about 108hp. But there is nothing like the torque of a VTwin.

    But they have soft suspension, if your over 180 lbs.

    U can get a used Superhawk for about $3k, depending on mods done to it.

    Like any moto, doing your own work is cheaper & U know what's been done to it.

    If U want more info PM me

    Good Luck
    #58
  19. glynb

    glynb Relentless Underachiever

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    A friend of mine had a Ducati and absolutely loved it. He was not a wrench, and had to take the bike to Dallas (about 250 miles), which was where the nearest dealer was, to have it worked on. If I remember right the bike did require a good bit of maintenance, but he absolutely loved the bike, and was rather well off so he didn't mind the cost. To him it was worth every penny. He would still have the bike today, but it was totaled when he was rear ended by a cage.

    For me, the issue would be dealer location. There are not that many Ducati dealers around, but lots of Honda/Yamaha/ Suzuki dealers around. That should be factored into cost of ownership.

    I change the oil on my ST1100, and do minor stuff. For anything more complicated the dealership (which is a good one) is less than 5 miles down the road if I need them, and there are no independent shops in my area (unless you have a Harley).
    #59
  20. dman

    dman Been here awhile

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    Why bother? Because my Ducati dealer (claimed to be one of the highest-volume dealers in the US) usually doesn't stock shims. When I asked if the service department could provide them, I was told the Parts dept and Service dept are separate. 10 minutes with fine emery cloth on a piece of glass and my clearances were perfect.

    -dman
    #60