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Hi everybody! I'm new here, so please break me in gently (heehee). I have a '99 900SS that has been experiencing a progressing problem that I think might be a fuel or ignition problem. a few years ago I had an issue with the rear cylinder pipe glowing bright red when it was warming up. When I bought the motorcycle it came with the stock pipes and one set each of the Remus DP high and low pipes - and 3 ECU boxes. I sold the high pipes and the box with them and have the DP low pipes on the bike. I don't know why but when I swapped out the ECU I didn't get the hot pipe problem anymore, but now I get horrible coughing and spitting around the 3000 - 4000 rpm range. I can ride it, but it's often very unmanageable.

My ex-husband replaced the injectors and did a tune-up on it, checked the heat sensor, checked the fuel pump, I can't remember what else he did, but he's stumped - and he's a proficient mechanic that has owned Ducatis for many years now.

I've read a bit about the Oxygen sensor and mapping the ECU, but just not sure what direction to go. I've taken it to the local dealer and they charged me $675 for a valve adjustment when I brough tit in to diagnose THIS problem and they never even looked at it, so I'm not too interested in going back there.

Any ideas out there? I haven't taken her on a ride all summer because it gets worse (notably worse) when it's hot - the bike or the weather. I would appreciate any help I can get.

Thanks!
Janna
 

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Welcome, Janna. Don't worry about being treated "gently;" there don't seem to be any a..holes on this board :)! Sounds like it may be running rich if it gets worse when the motor and air are hot. Have you tried putting the stock ECU and mufflers back on? I can't see valve adjustment or injectors being the problem. Sounds more like the ECU and mufflers not being correct. Hopefully someone more familiar with the injected SS might be able to help.
Joe
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have tried both ECUs, but not tried the stock mufflers yet - they had mice living in them and full of dog food now. Bummer, huh? My ex mentioned they can sync the injectors, but he only has the equipment for carbs. Wondering about this talk of "mapping the ECU" and if they would go bad over time and need that done. Hmmm.....
 

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2001 900SSie
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Popping etc.

I have an 01 900SSie with the DP (Remus) pipes. This came with an ECU (Marelli 15M) mapped for these pipes. If you look at the attachment you will see that the stock pipes are much smaller than the DP ones - this is one of the reasons why there is a different map - the configuration is different because it breathes out much better.

The "calibration" is written on the ECU, but you will have to remove the ECU to see it. If it is the stock ECU it will probably have calibrazione 001 on it. If it is a Ducati Performance mapped ECU it should have this written on it.

Running crap around 3 to 4000 rpm. 3000 rpm is where noise and emission tests are done for compliance. Typically manufacturers make the mixture leaner (higher air fuel ratio) to pass the tests. This introduces a flat spot around those revs. If the map is not matched to the pipes, then I guess this could enhance the problem.

It is not possible to change the map "at home" unless you have aftermarket products, of which there are a few around. After much research and wasted hours, I settled on TuneBoy (made in NSW Australia) This comes with a cable that lets you plug into the diagnostic port under the seat on the right hand side. You then connect it to your computer and via very simple screens, you change any bit of the map you like. E.g. fuel, ignition and acceleration maps.

This is astoundingly cheap for what it does - AUD$ 379 plus freight. Don't be put off by Ducati not being listed on the web site. It is the same ECU as in Moto Guzzis. TuneBoy (Wayne) did about 35 dyno runs on my bike to develop a map for my bike, so there is a starting map available. Have a look at the web site tuneboy.com.au to read about what it can do. This means that after whatever mods you do to your bike, you can simply get into the ECU and change the map.

Oxygen sensors - I have the excellent LC-1 from Innovate Motorsports and cross checked its accuracy when we did the dyno runs. These tell you what the air fuel ratio is as you run the bike and you can use them as a mapping aid. The 900SSie "likes" an AFR of about 12.5 Best bet really is to do some dyno runs from various throttle positions. The chart should show power and AFR vs rpm. You can then use this info to start playing with AFR in the ECU to get best performance from your bike. The LC-1 is available from a few companies in Oz, but if you buy one make sure you get the stainless steel bung for welding to your pipe. Also find an experienced SS welder as the bung is a different grade of SS to the pipes and apparently affects how the weld material deposits/flows into the pipe.

Send me a PM with your phone number if you want to discuss this. I am in NSW, Australia.

Richard
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Punch, and Joe-B.....thank you for the warm welcome. I appreciate it. I'll pass this info on to my expert (the infamous ex - and my nest friend) and see what he's thinking after reading all of it. The more help, the better right now. I want my baby back.
 

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AUD$675 for a valve adjust!!!!!!!

That is more than I paid for my last full service and a change of fork seals.

Running hot is usually a sign of a lean mixture (High AFR) If it is that hot, then you can get pre-ignition/self detonation, which means it is so hot inside that the fuel ignites without a spark from the plug.

The rear cylinder on air cooled Ducs always runs hotter than the front, hence the air scoops in the fairing to direct air over the fins.

I would be looking at the colour of the plugs. Check this link http://www.theultralightplace.com/sparkplugs.htm

What fuel do you run? I always use 98. My first preference is Caltex Vortex 98, it might be psychological but the butt dyno reckons it is good. I also use BP Ultimate and Mobil 8000. I have not used it for years, but it did not like the then named Shell Optimax.

If it is lean, there is a chance that air is getting sucked in from places apart from the air filter. Maybe a screw is out of the throttle body or a clamp is loose.

Richard
 

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i'd just set the tps properly, set the throttle bodies up, adjust the idle mixture and make sure the timing belts are not loose. the dp ecu should work well if it's set up right.

it would appear the "set up right" bit is your issue - if you don't have local access to people with the gear and knowhow it is almost impossible to achieve unfortunately.

i'll link my report, but it might just frustrate you and the ex with the stuff you can't do yourselves. http://www.bikeboy.org/ducati2vthrottleb.html
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks guys. I have forwarded this thread on to the "Ex" (one of my best friends, BTW) and I'll wait to see what he thinks. I'm sti;ll leaning toward the 'mapping' of the ecu, but the progression of the problem is concerning. It's just keeps moving from bad to worse.

I love these forums. Everyone is so wonderful and helpful.....thank you.

Janna
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Oh, and Punch.....FYI, that valve adjustment included a spare key. Does that help the hurt?!?!?!?
 

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Ooops US$

I just realised that you were WA USA, not WA Australia - that makes it even worse in terms of cost. My post was in Australian Dollars, so quite a lot less than your payment.

Spare key - for our bikes they are very cheap - no fangled electronic codes, just a blank key that is cut to match.

I suggest you search this SS forum for recommended service guys in your area. Also, they do not have to be "approved" guys. You may have worked out by now that there are lots of people on this forum that know a thing or two, but are not trained formally.

The guy I use is a brilliant one man band. This means I know exactly who is touching my bike. I also get at least 1/2 hour debrief on what has been done.
 

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running lean running rich

Hello there
I got a funny development on my 750SS year 2001 too.

In the beginning it ran to lean and I added a powercommander and a potentiometer to bring the spark plugs to an healthy brown. From 2008 to recently. Then about 2 weeks ago, after not using the bike for a whole weekend, the bike started sputtering right when reaching the city I work in. (5 min ride). I disconnected the PC. It started and got me to my working place without any trouble, about 5 min further away from the first place where I had to unplug the PC.

About 3 hours later I went to see someone and on a nice high speed avenue at 7000rpm the engine just stopped with sputters. Did not start again or started and run sputtering for about 30sec. I had to tow the bike back home.

At home I checked the plugs which where black, clearly running too rich. I cleaned the tank and found silicone which is used to seal the tank filler, quite a lot, most likely enough to make the pump sweat. I checked the filter which is about 3 weeks old and which turned out to be OK. The bike ran better but still the issue of a black spark plug pole plus some minor sputtering.

I took out the K&N Filter and put in a paper filter, changed the main fuel line as it looked brittle, checked the backflow fuel line and unconnected the potentiometer. It run better but had some hesitations around 7000rpm. Starting the engine up was neither the same compared to the friday before the trouble started.

Now I'm running a STP fuel system cleaner and it becomes better, at starting, it still runs a bit like a harley at idle and only if I drive at around 7000 to 8500 rpm I get a blackish brown plug. The bike has a 900SS header and my desire to core the stock muffler becomes greater by the minute now.

But how can it be that by a weekend standing those changes raise? Anyone has any idea?

Regards
Arnego2
 
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