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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, i just read capones thread, and almost thought we were having the same exact problems, but we are not. But i'm wondering if it might be the issue some people were suggesting. So here is the deal....

I have 2000 996 bi-posto. It's always been well maintained, last July i decided to throw on a backpack with a few pairs of clothes, and head to Tennessee on my beautiful mistress, from new Brunswick, Canada.

Changed the oil before i left, stopped at Moto Milano in windham, Maine for a quick once over and headed out. On the way back home, got caught in a rainstorm (the bike has only seen rain once!...well twice now) and i ended up losing my horn...i haven't checked the fuse. I went for a ride one time after getting back, i stored the bike without changing the oil...after putting all those miles on. (i know i know, but i couldn't find the proper oil around here, and couldn't get down to maine, for certain reasons). Before i put it away, i noticed at idle the oil light was kinda lightly flickering on/off. I chalked it up to needing an oil change.

Anyways, i started it up This last Sunday for the first time, started no problems at all. Idled fine, nice and smooth, everything was good, oil was a bit dark in window(for obvious reasons), but no white stuff or indications of blown seals or water etc. Ran fine as i wasn't pushing it to the meeting spot.

Upon leaving, boys being boys, we decided to give our bikes a little run up. Upon opening up my throttle, off she went, until it hit about 9k rpm....then it was just like someone hit the kill switch. Bike lost all power, bogged, and RPM gauge went to ZERO. Like it had no fire whatsoever. i was thinking it might be bad gas, as i stored it with a full tank to keep some condensation out. But i dont think bad gas would cut the rpm's off completely, only stutter, stall, etc. this was flat out, losing fire it seemed. rpm zero, no stutter, just simply off. Then suddenly after about 5 seconds or so, it would just snap back on, and continue running like nothing happened.

Now here's the weird part, if the bike was in a higher then normal gear and under load, she'll walk right up to redline before cutting off. if it's in a lower gear, and will rev fast, it cuts out and shuts off before redline. if i pull in the clutch and let it free rev, it will cut out before redline. if i slowly walk the rpm's up to redline very very slowly, it will hit the rev limiter, sit there for maybe a second, and then cut off again....again, like you hit the kill switch. I decided to push forward, because it was way to nice of a day and i figured i'd deal with the repercussions of blowing it up if it did later. about 1/2 thru the ride, i noticed the oil engine lamp was on and very very faintly flickering even with the rpm's up near 4k range, not just at idle. then suddenly it went away after a few more miles.

someone suggested to capone when his was bogging, that it might be the kickstand switch. I dont understand why it was running fine, minus the oil lamp light before i stored it, and then after storage it is running the way it is now, if it is electrical.

Anyone have any ideas?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Oh and just in case anyone asks, i did go to Tail of the Dragon in Tennessee and it was everything i thought it would be!! =)

I attached some pics, the killboy took! =)
 

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Sounds like you had a great trip apart from your prob.

Something similar happened to my 01 996 in Feb this year. For me it was a loose fuse for the right hand side handlebar switch (the kill switch). The plastic tab which holds the female electrical conntector for the fuse had broken. When I last removed the fuse box from it's mount the pull on the wires caused the fuse blade to become almost disconnected. Under high rev vibration, the blade lost contact intermitantly.

I nearly went insane finding this problem. I thought fuel pump / filter at first, sorted that, same problems. Only discovered it when I pulled the fusebox to get to the coil connectors and that completely separated the fuse.

Hope this is you prob. Easy fix. I crimped up the female connector a bit and glued it to the fuse box.

Good luck. The subject fuse it the rear most in the box.
 

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Sounds like you had a great trip apart from your prob.

Something similar happened to my 01 996 in Feb this year. For me it was a loose fuse for the right hand side handlebar switch (the kill switch). The plastic tab which holds the female electrical conntector for the fuse had broken. When I last removed the fuse box from it's mount the pull on the wires caused the fuse blade to become almost disconnected. Under high rev vibration, the blade lost contact intermitantly.

I nearly went insane finding this problem. I thought fuel pump / filter at first, sorted that, same problems. Only discovered it when I pulled the fusebox to get to the coil connectors and that completely separated the fuse.

Hope this is you prob. Easy fix. I crimped up the female connector a bit and glued it to the fuse box.

Good luck. The subject fuse it the rear most in the box.
Interesting, I gotta give that a look!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Sounds like you had a great trip apart from your prob.

Something similar happened to my 01 996 in Feb this year. For me it was a loose fuse for the right hand side handlebar switch (the kill switch). The plastic tab which holds the female electrical conntector for the fuse had broken. When I last removed the fuse box from it's mount the pull on the wires caused the fuse blade to become almost disconnected. Under high rev vibration, the blade lost contact intermitantly.
i'll check it out asap, and let ya know, thanks!

I was thinking all kinds of things. ECU, coil? sidestand switch?.....but the sidestand didn't even make sense, cause it was only when i rev it to high rpm's under very little load on the engine.
 

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Oh and just in case anyone asks, i did go to Tail of the Dragon in Tennessee and it was everything i thought it would be!! =)

I attached some pics, the killboy took! =)
Lights flickering faintly are an indication that something is grounding out, perhaps the result of the good soaking and the long period of sitting your bike had....

A bike that stutters and coughs at intermittent times (and with inconsistency) indicates that the fuel delivery or spark timing are not correct, also possibly due to the soaking your bike had before sitting for a spell...

When a bike runs "correctly" at times, and "incorrectly" at others, it leads me to believe the ECU is not working properly, and there are a few possibilities that could create this condition. The ECU sends information to the injectors based on several "inputs" - The position of the crank, the temperature of the engine, the RPM's present at any given time and so on and so on. It is also responsible for telling the coils when to fire based on a number of variables as well. Whether it's fuel, or spark it's the ECU that orchestrates the dance.

So where to start? Since you mentioned your bike took a pretty good bath, I'd look for the simple things first... primarily, electrical connections that affect fuel delivery or spark timing.

Check to make sure that the connectors to your coolant temp sensors (there should be one at each cylinder) are in good shape, free of corrosion etc. and making good contact (one of these sensors typically talks to the temperature display at the dash, and the other talks to the ECU so that it knows to "enrichen" fuel delivery when the engine is cold). If this sensor isn't making the proper contact, it could be sending bad information to the ECU.

Next,I'd check the main connection at the ECU for any signs of corrosion. For the 1.6m computer, this connector is that great big plastic thing on the side of the box. I'd recommend disconnecting your battery before messing with the ECU connector just to be on the safe side. If you see any signs of corrosion, a shot of contact cleaner and a little time with some steel wool or sandpaper should do the trick ... Also make sure the ECU ground wire is in good shape, free of corrosion and is making proper contact...

If you see no problems at the connector, crack open that rubber plug on the 1.6M ECU box (you know, the one with the tape on it that says "Do No Remove" or the world will spin off of its axis?:eek:) and look for any signs of moisture related corrosion inside of the housing (specifically, green cruddy looking stuff on the circuits). Be certain that you have discharged any static electricity from yourself before getting into the ECU and be sure that the key has been in the "off" position for at least thirty seconds before you go poking around in there as well (which won't be a problem if you've disconnected the battery in the precious step)... if you see corrosion inside the box it could be done for...

I had an ECU go bad on my ST4 (a 916 engine with the 1.6M computer) last year and it behaved very similarly. Basically the ECU was giving bad instructions to the injector in the horizontal cylinder and creating an EXTREMELY rich running condition... cough, choke, backfire... agh!!!

The real bugger in all of it was that to diagnose the problem as the ECU, I pretty much had to borrow a known working unit (thank god for my local shop and a project 748 they had).... Once diagnosed it was a very simple fix, and I found a used ECU through gotham cycles for $250 (which is a great deal better than the $1,600 they cost new)

A problem like this really could be any number of things, but given the events leading up to your problem I thought my experience could be helpful. Hope you get it sorted soon.

Best regards,
Josh

P.S.: your photos on the tail look like one hell of a fine day on the bike!
 

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How's your battery? How old is it? does it hold it's charge? Does it get charged whne the engine is hot/cold? How's your rectifier? Cables for battery, also the negative connection on the engine block. Rectifier connectors behind the battery?

It's is pity, that Ducati removed the charging warning light somewhere in the late 90's. that little thing might have saved a lot of people at some point or another, me included.
 

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Good idea to check ALL electrical connectors for corrosion, but most important make sure the charging system is working, if you fried the 3 yellow wire connector it will slowly drain battery as you ride and have all those weird issues. Check voltage at idle and 4000 rpm, also with bike shut off, post the results.

Also check front cylinder plug hole. make sure there is no water in it, spray from front tire can get in there and cause misfire
 

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Discussion Starter #9
hey all, thanks for the great ideas.

bike is an hour away, so i'll have to get to it on the weekend.

But basically the bike isn't stuttering at all, it just simply cuts off completely, like i hit the kill switch or turned the key off. From full power to zero pull, and 0 rpm. It isn't stuttering, or giving signs like that, it's simply .... Off....5 seconds later, back to full power like nothing happened...doesn't even stutter turning back on....like a light switch being turned off and then back on.

as jw said, i'm guessing it's electrical for sure. And i do believe it's possibly grounding out somewhere, due to the engine oil lamp flickering on/off sometimes. My headlight is working fine, not dimming at all, etc....i checked it when it shuts off, it remains on and bright. same with signal lamps.

Soon as i get to the bike (latest will be friday) i will definitely report back my findings. I just wanted to get on here, and get some ideas from everyone first. since the bike is stored a little ways away! haha.

I really do appreciate all the help and comments and ideas! This forum is the BEST!!!!

edit: battery was brand new last year, and is in top condition. doesn't strain to turn the bike over, will simply start up without doing a full turnover cycle when its warm(it took two starter cycles to start up after being stored for half the year and then ran fine)
 

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Check out the relays beside the battery, mine used to vibrate loose and give eaxctly the same symptoms. Cured by using cable ties to hold the relay securely in its base
 

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Check out the relays beside the battery, mine used to vibrate loose and give eaxctly the same symptoms. Cured by using cable ties to hold the relay securely in its base
+1 on the above advice....

As I re-read your original post, I'm becoming more convinced that your problem is related to an electrical connection vibrating loose. Check the main fuse, the connector on the back of the starter relay (IIRC, the power loop for the ECU runs through this relay). The fact that it is cutting out completely and then able to re-fire right away suggests there aren't any issues involving fuel delivery so I think you can rule out the relay for the fuel pump.
 

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The tach reading dropping to zero is a clue. The tach gets its rpm signal from the computer that in turn gets engine rpm from a sensor. If it drops to zero rpm, the ECU isn't sending out the necessary control signals to the injectors and coils. Usual suspects would then include incorrect rpm sensor gap, faulty wiring, bad connection to/from the ECU, and worst case an internal ECU problem. You mention getting caught in the rain so check for soggy connections.

The rpm sensor is located near the water pump where the alternator leads come out of the casing. It's shimmed out to a specified clearance from the flywheel. If the gap is incorrect or fluctuates due to a loose flywheel or cracked engine casing the rpm signal will be erratic. A too-large sensor gap usually results in a cut-out at high rpm similar to hitting the rev limiter.

Of course, it could be nothing but a vibration-sensitive loose connection.
 

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Ok, so i checked all the suspects people had mentioned, with the exception of the flywheel/rpm sensor. I didn't rip the tank off, or anything of that nature, but inspected all connectors for any sign of corrosion or broken wires, things that stuck right out. I found a few connectors going to the kill switch and checked those and they were fine.

I checked the relays beside the battery, and found one was partially off, but only by a small amount, I pulled all cons apart, and put them back on...not finding any corrosion or apparent breaks.

Started the bike, let it warm up, and revved it up....i had zero issues. It didn't shut off on me once when revving fast, and high rpm. I didn't take it out and drive, but no matter how much i revved it, i could not get it to shut off again.

I am hoping it just kinda cured itself. There is a storm system rolling thru here for the next 4 days, so i'll update this again when i get to take the bike out, and let you all know if it acted up while on a ride or not.

I did find that my horn not working, was simply a blown 7.5amp fuse. replaced and its fine.

so in the end, heck if i know what i did, or what was wrong, or if i even found it! lol
 

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I did find that my horn not working, was simply a blown 7.5amp fuse. replaced and its fine.

so in the end, heck if i know what i did, or what was wrong, or if i even found it! lol
It must have been your horn!!! :D
In all seriousness, you most likely had a bad contact somewhere and you've fixed it...
 

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Also make sure your battery terminals are clean and the bolts are snugged tightly to it. Had this same exact problem with another bike - a loose battery connection was the culprit.

-Drew
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Ahhh, i did notice the negative side of the battery had a bit of crud on it. I'll take it off and clean it up.

Thanks again guys, i really do hope i got it! Cheers!!!!!! Love this community =)
 

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Glad to hear you still have the 996! There aren't many 'old' Duc riders in NB, even today.

Sounds like the relay was to blame. If it persists, check the engine sensors and the TPS (and the connections to the throttle bodies). Temp, air volume, crankshaft position, air temperature etc. I had a weird problem where when the bike got hot, it would lose power - trying to give it more than a few mms of throttle and it would bog like it was hitting the limiter, regardless of the RPMs. I replaced all the engine sensors and adjusted the TPS and that fixed it... But I never did figure out exactly which sensor was the culprit.
 
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