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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well you read my story with the worn opener, so here's the full story.

This is the first time I take on the challenge of servicing a Ducati. I have done my decent amount of wrenching and as long as the garage is clean, you use the right tool, take your time, I figure I could do this to...

So here's my story. The bike is due for it's 6000 miles service. The usual stuff. But since I was at it and I'm doing the job myself I decided to trow in a couple of extra: MBP retainers and cam dialing. As said elsewhere, the project will end with a fuel fueling tune which I will try to document accurately...

Let's start...

Here's how it looked last weekend:



Stripped naked ready for the operating table



Nice clean valves (probably thanks to some Redline S2 fuel cleaner too...)



A little sidetracked replacing the throttle cam to something quicker:





Let me make sure I understand the cycle (it's not like I have a 90 degree twin apart every day):



Ready for the measurement:

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Organize the feeler blades:



Summary of the readings (shims and clearances):



In the meantime, let me build a sturdy support for the dial indicator to precisely find TDC and measure valve lift (needed later on to dial the cams).

This is the "hook" that sits on top of the closing shim to measure lift:



Testing the measuring



Details of the support bracket:





As I mentioned elsewhere I discovered that one of my rocker was worn and the chrome plating has came off:



More to come in a couple of weeks when I'll be replacing the rocker, installing MPB retainers and shims, and probably start the cam dialing...
 

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Very high quality post mate! Keep up the good work!

BTW: nicely organised "shed". Makes an old military heart beat a bit faster...:) And it's so much easier to work in a well organised space...:)

This one should in my view go sticky. Together with the follow-ups.
 

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Very nice, will be following. If you haven't checked out my blog for this type of info, just click on it in my sig. and search cam timing, valve adj, etc, 999R.
I have tried to make a nice tool to sit on the closer for dial indicator and has had little luck. Did you make yours? Any chance I could purchase a "hook" like yours??
Any info, greatly appreciated. AND---which dial indicator set did you use?
Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
@tricklidz: I'm not very interested in selling or making these tools. I rather teach you how to. It's quite simple, particularly if you have a set of shims around. Total cost is a few bucks from Ace Hardware (which gives you enough material to mess up a couple of times). Read on...

Here's a few more pix of the cams. You really can't appreciate the full magnitude of the Desmo system until you see the cam profile. If you have seen cams in your life from cars or other vehicles you'll understand what I'm talking about. If you add the 40mm valves and the >10K redline it makes it even more impressive... Simply stunning!!!!

So here's the cam profile. This is the intake cam on the horizontal cylinder. In particular you can notice no distinctive wear marks on the left lobe (first picture) corresponding to the worn rocker:





Here's a full 360 of the intake cam:







 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Here's a 360 view of the horizontal cylinder exhaust cam:









And here's the shims I remove. Again, notice no particular wear... I'm a little puzzled by the worn rocker and I can only think it was a manufacturing issue with the chrome plating.

 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
And now the cam lift tool.

It all start with a brass rod from Ace Hardware: 1/16" of diameter. Brass is very malleable making it easier to work with. It's soft enough not to scratch things it touches but hard enough not to bend or lose its shape:



Here's my dial indicator. I've found it on eBay, from Shars. It's decent, works well and was 20 bucks or so. It has a removable tip that makes it convenient so the cam lift tool fits inside making the measures more precise.



Here's the dial and the cam lift tool mocking the setup. If you have a sper set of shims makes the construction even simpler:





Here's a detail on how the tool fits around the opening shim and over the closing:





You start by twisting it with some pliers, checking that you're doing more or less 90 degrees elbows (I used a square to check) You then make the hook and strike it with a hammer over an anvil a few times to flatten it out (so it sits nicely over the shim). Then adjust, and trim... Kinda like the street vendors that makes cool things out of a metal wire... As I mentioned, if you have some shims laying around it allows you to check that it sits nicely around the opening without binding.

More to come when I get the EMS shims...

Enjoy!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
And here a few notes on cam dialing... Not rocket science at all nor some kind of voodoo. Just a great amount of care and checking, rechecking, then check again. A lot of it is plain and simple arithmetic.

Some theory... sort of...

So let's look at the cam specs for a 999S. This is just a 999S so your numbers might be different, but the concept is the same.

My intake cam has a duration of 256 degrees and a lift of 11.71mm. Those are the only cam specs and they can only be changed by changing the cam (or said differently, are not affected by cam timing... or they are your constant while dialing the cams). What they mean is that the angle the crank covers between the point where you have 1mm of valve lift after it has started opening (I'll call it "opening lift" hereafter) and the point you have 1mm of valve lift before the valve is completely closed (I'll call it "closing lift" hereafter) is 256 degrees.

This arc is measured with 1mm of lift because it's more practicle: you set the piston at top dead center after the compression stroke (when the valves are completely closed) zero the dial indicator, take it to 1mm lift, and read the angle. The idea is that you get 1mm in one point of the crank while you get 0mm over an arc.

Once again 256, your duration, WILL NOT CHANGE WITH DIALING, it's dictated by the cam profile only.

The total lift, doesn't come into play while dialing so we can put it in the back-burner.

The duration of the exhaust cam is 258 deg

Another thing to understand is the cycle. For various reason that go beyond the scope of this post, cams don't open and close ad the dead centers. They rather do before or after... It has to do with air moving, and its inertia, and a bunch of other thermodynamics and fluidodynamics things.

All we need to know is that the intake valve start opening before the piston is at TDC before the intake stroke and closes after the BDC before the compression stroke. The exhaust opens before the BDC after the expansion stroke and closes after the TDC before the intake stroke. You will notice that there is a certain ark around the TDC before the intake cycle where both valves are open at the same time: this is the valve overlap.

Cam dialing refers to setting a particular crank position before TDC for the intake and before BDC for the exhaust: pros and cons of one setup vs another, again are beyond the scope of this post...

The fact that duration is a constant comes in handy in all of this because it gives us a good reference to ensure we are accurate and we're doing a good job. Here's an example: if we set the are opening at 16deg before TDC and we then rotate our crank 256 deg we'll get to 60 deg after BDC. If we set our opening at 23 deg before TDC and we then rotate our crank 256 deg we'll get to 53 def after BDC.

The arithmetic is simple: CLOSING LIFT DEG = DURATION - OPENING LIFT DEG - 180

Here's how you use all this in practice.

Finding true TDC

The marking on the pulley is not accurate enough for this. We really want to find the true top dead center to zero the degree wheel. To do this we set the dial indicator over the spark plug hole and use something to touch the top of the piston (I've used one of the left over brass rods). You then start approaching TDC and you'll notice that the dial rises to a certain point and then start dropping again. You need to find that point where the dial stall. Again check, then check, then check again, and do another check. Give it a full crank spin and re-approch TDC and observe the dial stalling again once you get to 0.

Here's one more thing. Most crank wheel go from TDC to 90 to BDC. I personally like to use the vertical cylinder to zero the wheel because is more accessible, but I like to have the crank wheel that reads TDC when the horizontal is at TDC. So basically you want to 0 the wheel after TDC (by after I mean that if you would set the wheel to read TDC when the vertical cylinder is at TDC, you will then turn the wheel counterclockwise until you get to 90 deg)

Now you have your degree wheel zeroed, let's now zero the dial

Put the piston at TDC before the expansion stroke and remove all the valve clearances using the appropriate feeler blades.
Place the valve lift tool over the closing shim and preload the dial by 4 or 5 tens. Now rotate the crank until you read a 1mm lift on the dial. Read the degree wheel. Do the arithmetic to obtain the closing lift and go there and check you have a 1mm lift. If you do you're doing things right, if you don't check your setup as something is not right. It's important to make sure you can be accurate before start playing with timing.
Since the total lift is 11.71mm and most dial indicator don't get that far, by turning the crank you likely get to a point where the cam lift tools separates from the dial. What I like to do to avoid this is turn the crank backward or forward when moving from opening lift to closing lift so that the cam lift tool always remains preloaded. However always make sure you're approaching the 1mm lift by turning the crank counterclockwise (if you turn clockwise you engage the starter gear that makes it a little harder to center precisely).

I hope this helps...
 

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And now the cam lift tool.

It all start with a brass rod from Ace Hardware: 1/16" of diameter. Brass is very malleable making it easier to work with. It's soft enough not to scratch things it touches but hard enough not to bend or lose its shape:



Here's my dial indicator. I've found it on eBay, from Shars. It's decent, works well and was 20 bucks or so. It has a removable tip that makes it convenient so the cam lift tool fits inside making the measures more precise.



Here's the dial and the cam lift tool mocking the setup. If you have a sper set of shims makes the construction even simpler:





Here's a detail on how the tool fits around the opening shim and over the closing:





You start by twisting it with some pliers, checking that you're doing more or less 90 degrees elbows (I used a square to check) You then make the hook and strike it with a hammer over an anvil a few times to flatten it out (so it sits nicely over the shim). Then adjust, and trim... Kinda like the street vendors that makes cool things out of a metal wire... As I mentioned, if you have some shims laying around it allows you to check that it sits nicely around the opening without binding.

More to come when I get the EMS shims...

Enjoy!!!!
Are you sure you used 1/16" rod and not 1/8"?
 

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Well you read my story with the worn opener, so here's the full story.

This is the first time I take on the challenge of servicing a Ducati. I have done my decent amount of wrenching and as long as the garage is clean, you use the right tool, take your time, I figure I could do this to...

So here's my story. The bike is due for it's 6000 miles service. The usual stuff. But since I was at it and I'm doing the job myself I decided to trow in a couple of extra: MBP retainers and cam dialing. As said elsewhere, the project will end with a fuel fueling tune which I will try to document accurately...

Let's start...

Here's how it looked last weekend:



Stripped naked ready for the operating table



Nice clean valves (probably thanks to some Redline S2 fuel cleaner too...)

Dude...those are the cleanest valves I've ever seen, holy sweet little baby Jesus in a manger...

Nice work
 

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Dude...those are the cleanest valves I've ever seen, holy sweet little baby Jesus in a manger...

Nice work
must be something with the testa motor. mine has 30,000 miles and the valves are completely clean like his. and i never used any type of cleaner since new.
 

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must be something with the testa motor. mine has 30,000 miles and the valves are completely clean like his. and i never used any type of cleaner since new.
When I had my 102mm bore kit installed at 13,500 miles, I had a peek at the valves and they were in excellent condition, comparably so to the pic above. So were both cylinder bores, you could still see the cross-hatching,no scoring, smooth, they were as new along with the pistons. Had a second look at everything around 16,800 when my cases were split to replace all the bearings. Again the cylinders/pistons were like new, but well broken in-valves were super clean.
I'm curious why....I don't beat my 999, but I ride it hard.....interesting.
Ducati suggests not to use any fuel injection cleaners.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
As mentioned I do not have before and after pictures. But this was my S4 after 20K miles.



This as well was after a tank with a bottle of RedLine S2 fuel cleaner. On BobIsTheOilGuy forum there is a technical review on why the RedLine works best and has to do with the content of polyamine. I bottle per tank is quite a high concentration, considering that a bottle is supposed to be good for a car with up to 15 gallon tank... But it does the job and never had a side effect.

They could have very well been already clean...
 
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