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Discussion Starter #1
as I've been getting to know my ST4 and pushing the bike harder, I've begun to find that in very sporty riding, I can't trust the front end.

Last night, I finally figured out what it has got to be - the weight distribution. There just isn't enough weight over the front.

On my last two bikes (BMW F800S, BMW S1000RR), I pulled the forks through to lower the front to varying degrees. So clearly I need to do this as well.

I'm looking at the triple clamp however, and I can't see how the forks can be pulled through, due to the way the handlebars are attached.

Also, is there a way to lift the rear? I really want to get this bike's setup sorted out; in order to get it to do what I want, I have to sit very forward to try to weight the handlebars as much as possible.

Or am I just reaching the limits of the ST4? I highly doubt that - this is a Ducati, after all.
 

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as I've been getting to know my ST4 and pushing the bike harder, I've begun to find that in very sporty riding, I can't trust the front end.

Last night, I finally figured out what it has got to be - the weight distribution. There just isn't enough weight over the front.

On my last two bikes (BMW F800S, BMW S1000RR), I pulled the forks through to lower the front to varying degrees. So clearly I need to do this as well.

I'm looking at the triple clamp however, and I can't see how the forks can be pulled through, due to the way the handlebars are attached.

Also, is there a way to lift the rear? I really want to get this bike's setup sorted out; in order to get it to do what I want, I have to sit very forward to try to weight the handlebars as much as possible.

Or am I just reaching the limits of the ST4? I highly doubt that - this is a Ducati, after all.
Raising the rear ride height on Ducati ST bikes will transform the handling and is highly recommended. If your bike does not have a length adjustable link arm, then you can find/install one easily enough. The "rule of thumb" is to raise the rear so with new tires the rear tire is about 5-10 mm's off the ground with bike on CS. Remember to redial your pre-load and damping settings frt and rear too and readjust the chain as well. :) Some folks feel you should dial in a little more chain slack than factory specs/recommendation after the rear is raised as well.
 

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Mr Leakered
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With the rear raised, there will be some more weight over the front. Either way, I don't feel the front of the bike is light by any stretch. It is certainly lighter when the cases are loaded, but it certainly isn't a wheelie machine. Although, this was often quoted as an innate problem with Ducs due to the cylinder arrangement that also requires a long crankcase and a shorter than optimal swing arm. The newer layout of the D16 and Pani supposedly go a long way to fixing this, but then the same arrangement of the MotoGP machines isn't winning races.

I've found when the front is skimming out of a corner, it will still steer nicely toward the exit.

The forks cannot be raised much at all. Doing so would drop the ride height, which to me is critical for speed bump clearance to the header.

Have a good one.
 

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Mr Leakered
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It helped me. I found myself moving forward for corners with the 1in risers that came with my ST were installed. Removing the risers made cornering a lot more natural.

Have a good one.
 

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I know we have had this heated discussion, but I took the ST4s up to Scotland with wife and top box.

I have brand new Pilot Road 2s. All up weight about 22 stone. I have a Monster 1100s as well. The ST4s is a big bike and not fast turning like the Monster of the guys on Street Triples I usually ride with.

After the ride, no chicken strips at all and no ground clearance issues. The rear shock would need springing for rider and passenger to really work, but it worked well enough except a bit bouncy.

I can't imagine that owning a BMW1000RR would be anything like the ST4s.

I'm trying to figure what this 'sporty 'riding is for you guys? Is it fast, constant curves. Our roads are very different. If there are nice big bends of constant radius they are patrolled by Police are limited to 50mph. Instead we take to the back roads. These are roads you would be hard pushed to hit 100mph, without being launched into a dry stone wall. They are very narrow ( width of two compact cars mirror to mirror ). They are often gravel strewn, off camber, muddy and pot holed. 50/70mph is about the limit. So, we are not going particularly fast but are getting the bikes hard on the side at lower speeds.

Faster turn in, for these roads isn't an issue, we are not turning at high speeds so turning force is really just a shove in using a bit of counter steering. One thing that does help is that in left handlers ( where clearance is worse ) we are lucky that the camber assisted the ground clearance.
 

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Mr Leakered
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When talking fast turn-in, I (and I assume others) are talking about all corners faster than 5mph or so. The feeling that the bars need more input than our brains tell is required for such a bike. I like deliberate controls, but the ST was a bit heavy before messing with the ride height.

Now with the rear raised and on the Angels, the bike tips into to corners very naturally. It is a bit less than telepathic, but still requires no effort while still being deliberate versus the Triumphs that I rode which seem to fall into corners.

Have a good one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
whether or not it's actually light, the front is numb and it's hard to feel it "dig in". I've gotten it to do it a few times, but I can't recall what combination of countersteering and/or leaning off the bike I did. To be specific about how much lean I'm pushing, I have absolutely no chicken strip on the left and about an 1/8" on the right. My BMW S1000RR has about 1/4" on each side. I think I've been leaning more to get it through tighter corners at the speeds I'm taking them at.

I personally believe that having no chicken strips from road riding means that in some way or another, a rider isn't using proper weight transfer (hanging off).

I do have a fairly high standard for handling. While I don't expect my ST4 to rip it up like my BMW, exceptional feel for the front end is very important to me, ESPECIALLY if I'm riding with a passenger, as I'm responsible for two lives and I really need to feel some feedback from the front.

So getting front-end feel is of utmost importance to me right now.
 

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whether or not it's actually light, the front is numb and it's hard to feel it "dig in". I've gotten it to do it a few times, but I can't recall what combination of countersteering and/or leaning off the bike I did. To be specific about how much lean I'm pushing, I have absolutely no chicken strip on the left and about an 1/8" on the right. My BMW S1000RR has about 1/4" on each side. I think I've been leaning more to get it through tighter corners at the speeds I'm taking them at.

I personally believe that having no chicken strips from road riding means that in some way or another, a rider isn't using proper weight transfer (hanging off).

I do have a fairly high standard for handling. While I don't expect my ST4 to rip it up like my BMW, exceptional feel for the front end is very important to me, ESPECIALLY if I'm riding with a passenger, as I'm responsible for two lives and I really need to feel some feedback from the front.

So getting front-end feel is of utmost importance to me right now.
My opinion. Generally, all ducks have less weight on the front because of the long L-2 motor, and short swing arms. I find I have to put a lot of effort into getting my body over the front of the bike. Having the suspension set so that there is a forward weight transfer when going into the turns helps also. That is letting the front compress and the rear rise. It's a balancing act. But when you get it right it's a blast. :)
 

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I personally believe that having no chicken strips from road riding means that in some way or another, a rider isn't using proper weight transfer (hanging off).
Or said rider is cornering a lot faster than you are.
I do have a fairly high standard for handling, exceptional feel for the front end is very important to me, and I really need to feel some feedback from the front.
So getting front-end feel is of utmost importance to me right now.
Raise the rear ride height then.
 

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whether or not it's actually light, the front is numb and it's hard to feel it "dig in". I've gotten it to do it a few times, but I can't recall what combination of countersteering and/or leaning off the bike I did. To be specific about how much lean I'm pushing, I have absolutely no chicken strip on the left and about an 1/8" on the right. My BMW S1000RR has about 1/4" on each side. I think I've been leaning more to get it through tighter corners at the speeds I'm taking them at.

I personally believe that having no chicken strips from road riding means that in some way or another, a rider isn't using proper weight transfer (hanging off).

I do have a fairly high standard for handling. While I don't expect my ST4 to rip it up like my BMW, exceptional feel for the front end is very important to me, ESPECIALLY if I'm riding with a passenger, as I'm responsible for two lives and I really need to feel some feedback from the front. So getting front-end feel is of utmost importance to me right now.
Tires make a huge difference in how your ST will feel. I never have had a bike respond as dramatically to different tires as my ST. Maybe due to the trellis frame? :confused: Consider different tires. Experiment with pressures too. What type of tires are you running and at what pressures? Start there. :)

The ST bikes are weight biased to the rear, but not as bad as some other models, ie 49% frt/51% rear is what I read once, I forget where. So raising the rear is not so much about weight transfer as it is about steering geometry. Shortens the wheel base, steepens the angle, shortens the trail IIRC, all adding to frt end feel.

There's an old expression: Want to fix the front? Fix the rear. ;) Sag, compression, rebound out back effect the frt. :)

Get caught hanging off in Ontario, lose your bike, license and 10K$. ;) I'd rather have chicken strips, and not impress others. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Or said rider is cornering a lot faster than you are.
On the streets? I think not. If one is riding at race pace on public roads, fast enough to *require* maximum bike lean and knee-dragging...well, you be the judge.

At more realistic spirited riding on public roads, enough body english can be applied so that pushing the tires over the the limit is never required.

To apply more lean than you have to is poor riding technique. Why take away any reserves in the tire braking/lateral grip/acceleration equation. Watching WSBK or MotoGP, riders always pop their bikes vertical as quickly as possible, often hanging off the side quite a bit to allow the bike to get vertical that much quickly.
 

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At more realistic spirited riding on public roads, enough body english can be applied so that pushing the tires over the the limit is never required.
Every corner I have ever taken is with body English
 

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There's a reason for that old saying. It's true. :)
Where do you get that bunkum from ? Complete and utter rubbish. Who said it ? And what were try talking about ? It certainly wasn't modern motorcycles or we would all be riding monocycles by now.
 

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On the streets? I think not. If one is riding at race pace on public roads, fast enough to *require* maximum bike lean and knee-dragging...well, you be the judge.

At more realistic spirited riding on public roads, enough body english can be applied so that pushing the tires over the the limit is never required.

To apply more lean than you have to is poor riding technique. Why take away any reserves in the tire braking/lateral grip/acceleration equation. Watching WSBK or MotoGP, riders always pop their bikes vertical as quickly as possible, often hanging off the side quite a bit to allow the bike to get vertical that much quickly.
Moto GP riding is a different world entirely. They are trying to get suspension working in a horizontal plane.

The reason the tyres go around to the sidewalls is so they can be used all the way out to the sidewalls. Modern tyres will allow the bike to grip well beyond what most riders think. Knee down is often just a good way of tracking the available ground clearance and lowering the C of G.

GP riders want to get the bike vertical because it's only then can they apply full power. The less time in the lean, the more time on the throttle.
 

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On the streets? I think not. If one is riding at race pace on public roads, fast enough to *require* maximum bike lean and knee-dragging...well, you be the judge.
Some people like getting the bike over as far as they can on their favourite bend or roundabout and some people prefer not to explore their own or the bikes limits. It doesn't necessarily mean that they're going balls out at race pace everywhere.
At more realistic spirited riding on public roads, enough body english can be applied so that pushing the tires over the the limit is never required.
Thanks for clearing that up Benito Mussolini.

What does pushing the tyres over their limit have to do with it ? Most if not all decent modern sports tyres have limits far beyond what you or I could throw at them, chicken strips or no chicken strips, body English or no body English.
 

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Where do you get that bunkum from ? Complete and utter rubbish. Who said it ? And what were try talking about ? It certainly wasn't modern motorcycles or we would all be riding monocycles by now.
So then, according to you, ride height, pre-load and damping settings in the rear will have no effect on the front? :confused: Sorry, this is not "complete and utter rubbish." Front and back have to be dialed in and working together to get the best working suspension possible. Want to fix the front? Fix the rear first. ;)
 

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So then, according to you, ride height, pre-load and damping settings in the rear will have no effect on the front? :confused: Sorry, this is not "complete and utter rubbish." Front and back have to be dialed in and working together to get the best working suspension possible. Want to fix the front? Fix the rear first. ;)

Nope, that's not what I said at all. That saying means there is no need to alter the front at all. That all adjustment must be carried out at the rear of the bike.

If the saying was " by altering the rear of the bike it wil effect how the front works " would be factual. Saying that the only way to sort the front is by sorting the rear is hogwash.
 
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