You mind me asking what brutally expensive was? Iím assuming it was your 30k? As far as the clutch slave cylinder, I find it odd that I have to keep adding fluid in my reservoir. It keeps getting low. Where is it going if there are no visible leak. I just had a new clutch put in, much better but still losing fluid.
re: clutch, I don't have to top off; there is no visible external leak with mine, just a gradual loss of pressure. Happy to put an Oberon on, I'll probably do the same on my 916.
re: service, it was the 15k service.
I told them not to do the engine oil/filter as I had just done that (V300), but the bike needed rear brake pads ($35). The bill was $515 in parts, $1355 in labor ($149/hr), $44 other (?) for a total of $1914. Plus 10% sales tax, grand total $2105. I was quoted similar by another local dealer, I could have got the price down by restricting the service to just belts/valves and doing all the other items myself (hydraulic flush, clean/lube rear spindle, coolant flush, battery check, torque all bolts and lube pivots) but it's a lot of work to pull all the bodywork and fuel tank.
Last winter I replaced the fork seals after one blew ($89/pair from Ducati Omaha, $20ish on fork oil, $55 on a fork cap socket from the UK, $48 on a seal driver, plus a solid day of my time). In May, I coughed up $108 because Ducati would not warranty my 4th failed fuel level sensor, plus $120 for a failed MAP sensor, and pulled bodywork and fuel tank to replace them. I just ordered an Oberon clutch slave for $132 from Motowheels and will replace it myself (dealer wants $167 plus tax and then labour for the install), a new chain/quick change sprocket is $420 from Sprocket Center plus my time (dealer is $507 plus tax and then labour). Plus 2 sets of tires, obviously those are consumables, so I don't count them.
After 5 years and 16k miles I've spent at least $3300 (incl 600 and 7.5k), or $660/year, in parts and servicing costs. On the flip side, I've done two trips up into Canada and one to Yellowstone/Montana with my son (priceless, as they say), multiple 400 mile day trips over the mountains with friends, plus the run down to the West Coast Meet Up in California this year (also priceless as I needed to get away and the people were great); as one comparison point, the 12k mile service on my Street Triple was over $1000.