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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had 899 Panigle, which I really loved. I put it up for sale simply because I found it to be a bit too big for me (I'm pretty short), then I still enjoyed it so much that I forgot that I put it up for sale, and the 'for sale' ad was still up till out of blue, a really nice guy made me an offer that was pretty good. A week prior, I sold my beloved Yamaha RD250 (I was seriously running out of garage space), so suddenly, it's summer and I had no running bike. I immediately looked for something, and because I always liked 900SS, that's what I looked for, and found 1996 SS SP for sale not too far from me (which is very rare, and that's why I overpaid for it despite how ratty it was), and brought it home. It was pretty ratty - 20k miles, no service record, a lot of scratches on the plastics, spider webs, etc., at least it turned freely and it even started up. The tires were shot, sprockets and chains were shot, clutch slave cylinder was shot, brakes needed rebuilt, carburetors needed cleaning (of course), wheel bearings, and other basic Ducati stuff, like belts, valve shims, stuff like that, just all the basic. And after almost two months, I finally got to start it up! I haven't ridden it yet because the clutch is completely shot, and I'm still waiting for the parts. I can't wait to ride it. By the way, I learned so much from this forum, like the valve shims, torque specs, all the how-to's, so thanks for that!

This found a good new home. I had a great time with it, even though I felt silly often when I was stuck in traffic.


And this came home. It's a whole lot rattier than it seems. Only if I could sell all the spiders (and acorn nuts) I found inside of the fairings, I'd be able to fund all the parts that I bought for this.



Things I did (some absolutely necessary, and some just upgrade/update)
- cleaning cleaning cleaning
- fixed the crack in the side fairing, did the best I could with the faded carbon fiber bits
- clean/rebuilt carburetors (what a wonderful word, especially when spelled out, 'carburetor'!)
- valve clearance adjustment (closing side was pretty off)
- new belts, tensioners, idlers
- had to fix the upper fairing/headlight mount (right side mirror mount was broken, so I had to weld it back - odd, because there's no sign of fall)
- cleaned the exhaust
- fuel pump and filter (that was a lot of fun for some reason)
- repainted the rims (with leftover rattle cans from previous projects), new tires, new wheel bearings
- new clutch slave cylinder (Oberon, I had good luck with it on my 899)
- new brake and clutch hydraulic lines (I had such a problem routing the front brake lines, and had really tough time bleeding it, too, but all is good now)
- a lot of stainless steel hardware (my local hardware store knows me as a "nuts and bolts guy with good hand-writing")

Like I said, I'm still waiting for the clutch kit to arrive, and also on order is a new set of slip on muffler - it came with Two Brothers Racing cans, and it's a straight pipe, and it's way too loud. I think I'm going to really love this bike.
 

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Looking great.

BTW, there are DBKillers (generic too) made for those pipes, knocks a lot of the sound out of them.
 

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I really like the shape/look of those particular Corbin seats. They really remind me of the custom trimmed seats used in early 1980s AMA Production Superbikes. I'll have to go back on the Corbin website and see if it may be ordered without the piping along the edge of the seat so as not to interfere with body movements when standing the bike up in corners. That piping is the only thing that has held me back from ordering one.

(1996 900CR).

:wink2:
 

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Great story and outcome. Looks like you addressed everything but the blinker fluid. Happy riding when the day comes.
 
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Another one brought back to life. Thanks for the progress pics and video.

Congrats and Enjoy!!

I cant seem to get YouTube videos to work on here...anyone know why? They play anywhere else but here.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you all! I'm very excited about this one!

BTW, there are DBKillers (generic too) made for those pipes, knocks a lot of the sound out of them.
I wish I knew this, should have researched a bit more - I already ordered the cans. I'll probably put the TBR cans for sale later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I really like the shape/look of those particular Corbin seats. They really remind me of the custom trimmed seats used in early 1980s AMA Production Superbikes. I'll have to go back on the Corbin website and see if it may be ordered without the piping along the edge of the seat so as not to interfere with body movements when standing the bike up in corners. That piping is the only thing that has held me back from ordering one.

(1996 900CR).

:wink2:
I actually don't know if this seat is good - the one that came with was pretty tired, so figured I would either get it redone or get a replacement. Since I haven't ridden it yet, can't quite comment. I've had very good experience with Corbin seat on my 899 though, that was an arse saver!
 

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Thank you all! I'm very excited about this one!


I wish I knew this, should have researched a bit more - I already ordered the cans. I'll probably put the TBR cans for sale later.
I installed a couple set of D+Ds back in the day for customers...they would set off car alarms going through our parking lot!! LOL

Good on ya' for saving another SS! These bikes are the epitome of Ducati Spirit...Light, good handling and simple...
.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well...
I put it all back together last night. Installed new clutch and Exact-Start cables. Barnett clutch kit was easy to install (the old one was completely shot, including throwout bearing), Exact-Start cables were bit fiddly to install, but what a difference that it makes! Also, the replacement exhaust manifold gaskets came in, so replaced the old ones. That was interesting - first, with the carbon build-up, I couldn't even tell that there was one, but after a bit of scraping, I could see the edge of it. I had to shove a small flat head screwdriver to pry them out. That was kind of fun. I put the fairings back on - the fit and finish is really not that great, is it? It's pretty fiddly there, too. Anyway...
I couldn't resist despite moody forecast, so this morning I took it for a short ride, first time properly on 900SS! It starts right up, there seems to be no major hiccups all the way to red zone, everything seems to be fine. I did hit false neutral on the up shift a couple of times, I probably just have to get used to the transmission. The throttle cable should be a big tighter, so I'll do that tonight when I go home. Oh, and I saw that the bleeder at the banjo bolt on the clutch slave cylinder has a small leak, I need to replace that bit. I can't wait to take it on a longer ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Looking really good. BTW, I have found that on my bikes it is about 4 fl. oz. low on oil when it starts finding that false neutral,... goes away with just a bit of a top off.
Thanks! And also, thanks for that info. I'll check the oil level. I of course changed the oil, but to flush out the engine (goddess knows what treatment this engine had gone through before me), I was going to do the oil change again this weekend anyway, I'll definitely keep an eye on the exact oil level.
 

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Congratulations!

2 things .

#1 the motor has no rev limiter and from my dyno I see most stock motors are done by 8000 rpm's so plan to shift somewhere around 7500-8000. You can over rev safely within reason but the power falls off so fast you are simply going slower.

#2 the shift are is VERY adjustable externally so step one is to make sure the shift pedal is adjusted for you, many bikes people just jump on and ride without thinking they can make the bike fit them better. Do this first. If that does not help then the shift arm inside the motor may be out of adjustment, this happens often in a left side tip over. The shift arm is on slots and if you jam the lever you can take it out of adjustment, pull the alternator cover and check the shift arm for wear and adjustment. while you are there ......

light flywheel.
red locktite and torque the flywheel.
red loctite the layshaft and starter bolts
blue loctite the shift arm bolts (8 and 6mm).If your starter clutch is slipping this is a good time while you are installing the lightened stock flywheel (well you DO have a lathe). >:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
WHY didn’t I think of that! I adjusted the pedal today, and all is well, of course. Whatta dummy!

I took it for a longer ride today. Yeah, I did learn it quickly that the power trails off around 7500-8000rpm. I realized that I actually have no good reference point when it comes to the performance of this engine. 899, of course, had much more power, but SS feels way more accessible on the street, and it doesn’t feel all that slower up to that point where power falls off. Maybe because that’s where 899 will pump up and says, “watch this.” So there’s 899, and others would be various 2stroke bikes from the 70s and the 80s, which all had that explosive powerband that I’m forever addicted to. This one doesn’t have that, of course. But what I like, is that it’s very characterful, very distinctive, and surprisingly smooth, too. I wish there’s a bit more up there, a bit more revs to play with. Maybe a winter project, if I can figure out what to do. I did, immediately, adored the chassis though. Oh my god, compared to 899, it’s so soft, and comfortable over the bumps even, I was initially worried. But it’s rather amazing! Turn-in is quick, and super intuitive. Where I had to muscle 899 - and it responds really well to that bit of forceful persuasions - with this bike, I just kind of have to think, and it goes. And the feeling through the chassis is beautifully tactile that I don’t need all the gadgetry of modern bikes. Obviously, it’s ultimately much slower bike, but I’m delighted with its handling. A new bike, a lot to learn.

By the way, I’ll look into doing the lightweight flywheel. Indeed, I have a lathe! I wonder how much I can take off...I need to start reading up on the posts here about that. A winter project. It’s been a fun journey this far.
 

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Its not just on this forum you will hear people say that your bike is one of the ones they most regret ever selling. The SuperSport is special.

And there is another level on cornering speed to this bike you will only find on a track with the right tires and a few mods, it is all about the torque from the engine melding with a most excellent chassis response. It is not the rpm punch of so many bikes but the lean muscle of moving through a corner without having to "wrestle" the bike once you know the power band and the throttle response.
 

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Take the flywheel down about 2lbs from 4 to 2lbs and you will like it with no issues with idle. Lower weights can be done but at that point a Nichols aluminum would be the way to go. I prefer the 2 lb flywheel for track use.

The 899 is a good bike no doubt but the less weight of the supersport is a different game entirely, use the midrange torque and light weight to effortlessly float through corners and squirt out of the exits in search of more fun. turning a 2-valve motor into a 4-valve power output is expensive and futile so don't bother if you do not have to. instead build on the strong points like the tried and true mods for your bike. Some (most) are pricey but when done the bike becomes another level of fun.

No need to do it all at once (or even at all) .

light flywheel
gearing
bigbore kit
Keihin FCR's
lightweight wheels (magnesium or forged aluminum)
better suspension, could be new rear shock or valve and spring. Front forks there are many , many options and you may already have some done so look before changing parts.

I work on Ducati's from the 70's to 2019 and ride them all, NOTHING is more FUN to ride and a well sorted supersport. It is the AC cobra or Porsche 911 of the motorcycle world. An enthusiasts bike that will not be understood by all but those who love it find it hard to get out of their system.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for thoughtful comments. Yeah, it is indeed a very different experience, and the bike and I are just starting to get to know each other. I quite like it so far, the chassis is amazing! Want to dial it in slowly as I get accustomed to the bike. For now, I'm going off for a bit ride!
 
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