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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
G'day all

I'm new to this site... have been looking around the forum for a couple of months and picked up some great info already so first up, thanks to everyone for your collective wisdom ;) Great site!

I find myself wanting to buy a late model carbed 900ss, which would be my first Duc. I'm leaning towards the '97 just coz it seems most of the earlier model issues were ironed out by then (?). I haven't ridden for 7 years or so courtesy of a young family but now the bike bug is back. Before doing my bit for world population I had an XJR1200 and a VFR750 a few years before that. I have always loved the look and style of the carbed ss and if a guy ever needed a bit of encouragement on that front, this would seem to be the perfect place!

So far from reading on this site I think I've got a pretty good feel for what most ss riders consider 'ideal' in terms of aftermarket mods etc for the carbed bikes. One thing I've noticed is how much cheaper bikes seem to be in the US compared to here in Australia, presumably due to extra government sales tax/es over here. The bikes I can find in my price range are pretty much all standard with the exception of aftermarket pipes. This is ok with me as I'm sure time will tell what mods, if any, I 'need' after I get to know the bike. So unless something special comes up, I am really in the market for a well maintained, reasonably low km, 'clean' bike.

So in the end my question is simple: what is the service scheduling for the 900ss? What are the minor and more importantly the major items to look for and at what km/time are they due? Probably looking at one with around 50k km/30k miles on the clock. Would be good to know that everything has been done at the right time and that I'm not up for any major work right off the bat :eek: Any other buying advice from experienced heads also much appreciated :)

Oh... and can anyone tell me a foolproof way to secure a red motorcycle in a trailer to transport over a long distance???

Thanks in advance. Cheers!
 

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Items that should have been replaced by 30k miles:

clutch
drivetrain
rectifier
headlamp socket plug
layshaft seals
fork seals

others will have more to add I'm sure.

The wheels are anchors.

Enjoy the hunt, they're great rides.
 

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I bought my 93 almost 4 years ago - 46000 on the clock and was standard apart from a red screen and de-cored standard mufflers - paid 8800 and we were both happy with that. He had bought a 999S and tried to convince his partner to ride the 900 but she bought a 620 monster - said the 900 was too big for her. He did say the belts were almost due to be replaced, the clutch was a bit loud and it used a bit of oil and the rear swing arm was warranty replaced - cracked at the pivot left side. As he had owned the bike for a few years and stayed with a Ducati, I was happy with that. I replaced the belts and clutch (hub,basket and clutch pack) myself. And the red screen has been pensioned off and a light smoke ZG is in it's place. It is close to rolling over 61000 now.

Within the first 6 months the clutch slave went, followed by the clutch master cylinder. Both bought from various US sellers - clutch hub came direct from VeeTwo in WA where the bike was first registered. The chain and sprockets were almost toast too - chain was scary worn.

Thinking back - those few things didn't even concern me but I think I have spent far too much on it since. I did buy a new front brake master as it looked odd next to the pretty new clutch - and the carbon fibre bits, FCR carbs, spare regulator/rectifier and starter solenoid, nicholls Engine bolts, Dyna coils and leads, Ohlins rear shock, slip-on Duc Performance mufflers, braided brake and clutch lines. And a few I am sure I have forgotten. I do the services myself and will do the shims next time too.

Mine still uses a bit of oil but is in good nick - I have been reading the threads about drop in high comp pistons so if the heads are off the seals and guides will be looked at. And some full floater front discs would be nice but I've just bought a Jeep Wrangler and it needs a front bar, winch, new driving lights, UHF, some bigger tyres and a small suspension lift.

You are at a disadvantage though - increasing the population and all. I and a few others here don't have that to worry about.

Belts are scheduled for 2 years or 20,000klms - I do it at 2 years. You can choose to go long but people will mention dancing with the devil and other such nasties if you go that way.
The one not mentioned in the owners manual is the shims - they are usually checked and replaced if needed.
Not sure about the cost but my last one with a couple of shims, a fuel filter and filler sealing ring was about $350. But he has a small workshop (ACT) and is a Ducati fan.
Oil and filter are both 5,000
Air filter 10,000

If you don't mind getting your hands dirty, these engines are simple and a joy to work on. Replacing the clutch is almost easier than doing chain and sprockets and a lot cleaner.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys for your responses.

Oalvarez - cheers, that's a handy checklist to be armed with when looking around. Is there a particular issue with the headlamp socket? I was reading another thread the other day about replacing stock headlights as they are not that good?

Dave - I guess your experience with stuff going wrong so soon after you bought yours is the kind I'm trying to avoid, though you seemed to take it in your stride. I'm happy to learn and do as much as I can on the bike myself but I'm no mechanic and will be stretching things financially as it is. For bits to start falling off it too soon would be hazardous to my relationship's health too, I suspect... might end up sleeping in the garage next to the thing!

There are a couple of stock '97s around which I have been watching. One up in Brisbane I might get a chance to take a look at soon if everything falls into place

http://www.bikesales.com.au/all-bik...1430 1429 1428 4294967242 4294962426&__Nne=15

Anyone know of any other good '97s for sale in Australia, preferably NSW or Qld?

Thanks again guys for taking the time to respond.

Jim
 

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Thanks guys for your responses.

Oalvarez - cheers, that's a handy checklist to be armed with when looking around. Is there a particular issue with the headlamp socket? I was reading another thread the other day about replacing stock headlights as they are not that good?

Jim
cheers, mate! it's more-so the wiring harness and plug in that the gauge of the wiring isn't the heaviest. the plug tends to short if i'm not mistaken and can cause an electrical fire. my mechanics soldered on a plug from an auto parts store (and a new wiring harness as my bike experienced an elec fire) as a fix.

see ya,
 

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Items that should have been replaced by 30k miles:

clutch
drivetrain
rectifier
headlamp socket plug
layshaft seals
fork seals

others will have more to add I'm sure.

The wheels are anchors.

Enjoy the hunt, they're great rides.
+1 to all of the above. If the top end is original the guides may be getting a bit tired. If so that's a good time to drop in some hi-comp pistons.

In general, the "newer is better" advice is sound, but don't discount an older one. Often times the later tweaks have been done, frames replaced, etc. My '92 with almost 39k, (that I bought new and do not baby) has never had any cracking. It did get guides at 36k, and hi-comp pistons at 25k. Apologies to CR owners, but the price differences for an SP IMHO make them a better buy. Awesome bikes, and always fun to ride. At this point the only mod left I would do to mine is lighter/stiffer wheels. I had the front end apart yesterday to put new rubber on it, and the wheel assembly feels like ALOT of weight. Be patient in your search, you will be rewarded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Craig - great site you've got there! Looks like you like a challenge, no matter how many wheels or cylinders - must be a busy man!

Thanks MarkG too for advice about older models. The key I guess is to know what problems or fixes to look for in different year models. Speaking of which, Punch (who lives right near me as it turns out) was generous enough to give me a loan of Ian Falloon's Ducati Belt-Drive Two-Valve Twins - Restoration and Modification. Great book, goes into a LOT of detail about the evolution and differences between model years, production figures, engine and chassis modifications (thanks again mate!!!) Every bookshelf should have one!

The '97 I'm eyeing off from a distance has just under 50k km (30k miles), just had a major service, new chain, sprockets, both front discs. Not sure about other items mentioned above but I will be chasing that info. Must... be... patient...
 

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G'day from the states!

Well you probably already know but check the belts 1st! I always change my belts when I adjust/check the valves (every 6000 miles) but you might want to do that right away. Generally, they tend to settle in after a few thousand miles and most valve 'adjustments' requires only a little sandpaper to open the clearance slightly.

Check the clutch slave cylinder for leaks (some nice aftermarket units available from Evoluzione etc).

Get a Haynes manual:

http://www.amazon.com/Haynes-Ducati...=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1253672678&sr=1-3

..and give the bike a good once over! I bought mine on ebay, had it shipped and found that the speedo cable was broken - so I had no idea what the mileage really was! The only thing I found odd after that was that, when replacing the rear sprocket with a 39-tooth one, the spacer between the rear wheel and the swigarm was missing. So the wheel was grinding away at the swingarm. I ordered a new one and put a large washer in there for a temp fix. Good luck!

-96SP
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
G'day from the states!

Well you probably already know but check the belts 1st! I always change my belts when I adjust/check the valves (every 6000 miles) but you might want to do that right away. Generally, they tend to settle in after a few thousand miles and most valve 'adjustments' requires only a little sandpaper to open the clearance slightly.

Check the clutch slave cylinder for leaks (some nice aftermarket units available from Evoluzione etc).

Get a Haynes manual:

http://www.amazon.com/Haynes-Ducati...=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1253672678&sr=1-3

..and give the bike a good once over!

-96SP
Thanks 96SP, the Haynes manual looks the goods, I will definitely get me one of those. There is also a later version on Amazon covering '91 to '05 models. Feedback from one guy was that he uses the '91 to '96 edition for his '01 with no hassles, so presumably the small changes from the '96 to '97 models won't matter?

So thanks to you guys my basic checklist looks something like this:

  • By 50k km/30k miles look to have replaced clutch, drivetrain, rectifier, headlamp socket plug, layshaft seals, fork seals (plus look at pistons/seals/guides if removing heads)
  • Check belts, change every 2 years or 20k km/12k miles
  • Check/adjust valves every 10k km/6k miles, check shims
  • Oil & filter every 5k km/3k miles
  • Air filter every 10k km/6k miles

Are there set mileages when more 'major' stuff is done at servicing, apart from the regular items above? And what are those major fixes, if not covered by the above? Sorry of this is info straight out of the manual. I am downloading a service manual now and will order a Haynes manual today to get my head around this stuff better. It's hard to do without a bike in front of you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ha ha! The service manual is in Italian! Might wait for the Haynes...
 

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Ha ha! The service manual is in Italian! Might wait for the Haynes...
See?? You're already learning the patience part :)
 

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There are a couple of stock '97s around which I have been watching. One up in Brisbane I might get a chance to take a look at soon if everything falls into place

http://www.bikesales.com.au/all-bik...1430 1429 1428 4294967242 4294962426&__Nne=15

Anyone know of any other good '97s for sale in Australia, preferably NSW or Qld?

Thanks again guys for taking the time to respond.

Jim
That one looks nice Jim. I don't know the bike personally but looks like a good deal, especially given the recent service. I paid the same for my 1997 and was very happy to get one at that price.

At that mileage it shouldn't have to many hassles. I'd say its had somewhat regular use which is a good thing rather than having just sat around. Its a 12year old bike so may have a few hassles here and there but they are worth the bit of effort, I ride mine everyday and do a lot of k's they are reliable bikes.
 

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.and give the bike a good once over! I bought mine on ebay, had it shipped and found that the speedo cable was broken - so I had no idea what the mileage really was! The only thing I found odd after that was that, when replacing the rear sprocket with a 39-tooth one, the spacer between the rear wheel and the swigarm was missing. So the wheel was grinding away at the swingarm. I ordered a new one and put a large washer in there for a temp fix. Good luck!


Same here... my 95 cr was missing the spacer and the sprocket flange got chewed by the swingarm.. I bought it that way used and the axle would not come out so I had to saw it off... the bearings in the sprocket flange were GONE and the inner races welded them selves to the Axle.. the rear axle nut can easily be over torqued the swing arm will flex this was how the prior owner had "fixed" the space made by the missing spacer... YOU need to check EVERYTHING out on any new/AKA used bike!

09 Ducati GT 1000 Ohlins F&R Termis Rizoma bling
95 Ducati SS 900 CR
81 Yamaha SR 500 total cafe project bike

I cut my teeth on a home built 750 Honda Cafe Racer with an 820 kit back in the seventies....When I saw my first Ducati one day, I fell in love….it was a 900 SS bevel… thirty years later, I have two now
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
After a few phone calls, here's the situation:

'97 model, 47000 km, $7500 negotiable (? high $6000s-7000)
  • 3rd owner, had bike for 5 years, selling due to low usage & expecting baby
  • Last major service 2 1/2 years ago to pass rego when moving interstate from NSW to Qld, included chain & sprockets (stock size), Bridgestone tyres, new discs front & back
  • Only ridden 1500-2000km since then, one service in that time 1 1/2 years ago (Brisbane Motorcycles), changed oil/filters himself. Owner will contact BM and email me service records for these 2 services, does not have any from previous owners
  • Staintune pipes, otherwise stock, original clutch, no previous work he knows of
  • Brisbane Motorcycles noticed fairing was not original - thinks previous owner dropped bike at some stage, no other damage evident
  • 12 months rego
  • Extras - tank bag, cover, Haynes manual
http://www.bikesales.com.au/Tig/UI/...822755&c_mid=2822818&pid=140964&tabID=1409177

'95 model, 64500km, $8300 a little negotiable ?$8000
  • 3rd owner, bought late '98, selling due to low use (4000km in 10 years) & baby (sound familiar?)
  • Previous owner did 60k km major service
  • Tyres front 60% worn, rear 40% worn
  • Clutch slave cylinder replaced (V2), new clutch friction plates, fork seals done, chain and possibly rectifier and starter relay replaced by prev owner. Need to confirm details with service records - didn't have handy when I phoned. Standard Duc exhausts but polished
  • 5 months rego
  • Extras - cover
http://www.bikesales.com.au/Tig/UI/...822755&c_mid=2822818&pid=140964&tabID=1409177

'94 model, 64000km, $7500 firm
  • Owned for 7 years, ridden 10k km in that time, selling due to low use and....... young family (of course!)
  • Serviced by Powerhouse (Gold Coast), no records but will get these emailed from Powerhouse
  • Front tyre fairly new, rear worn & will replace on sale of bike
  • Hairline fracture in frame previously fixed by Dave Kellard (?) in Brisbane
  • New clutch 5 years ago, sprockets regeared lower ? size, open carbon clutch plate cover
  • Extras - front & rear race stands, seat cowl
http://www.bikesales.com.au/Tig/UI/...822755&c_mid=2822818&pid=140964&tabID=1409177

So that's where it is. I was really hoping for around or under $7000. It sucks to be restricted by $$ but you gotta draw the line somewhere! Basically looking at '97 with lower km/no mods for around $7k vs. '94 or '95 with higher km/some mods done for $7.5-8k. I will chase more info on exactly what work has been done as there are a few unknowns in that area.

Any thoughts???
 

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Yikes!

I realize those are Australian dollars but DAMN... you should buy a few of them from the US, crate 'em up, and ship them over. With what you'd make selling the extras you could probably pay for yours!

Not sure what the exchange rate is right now but those prices (without converting) are twice what you'd pay in the US.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yikes!

Not sure what the exchange rate is right now but those prices (without converting) are twice what you'd pay in the US.
... and the Aussie dollar is strong at the moment, around 87 US cents. Plus these are the bikes in the lower price range... others for sale with lower km are between $8500 - $11750 AUD! :eek:

Thus the amount of deliberation going on here :confused:
 

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Those prices are crazy. Our prices here in Canada are higher than the US (even with the exchange rate). But you can still find mid 90's 900's in the 5000 CAD range. I bought my 94 900 SS CR (tons of upgrades, basically an SP with half fairings) last year for 4200 CAD. My wife got her 95 this year for 5800 CAD. Her's only had 20000kms. Are other bikes also priced as high down under?
 

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$7,500 is a good price in my opinion ... Not to many come up much cheaper than that over here so you might be able to save 500 bucks or maybe a grand at the most if you keep waiting. I'd find a well maintained bike and buy it that way you can start enjoying it. Hell someone who bought a 1098 a couple of years ago will have already lost that much in value in that time.

I think its because they were sold in much lower numbers here that the prices are a bit higher. It wasn't that long ago our dollar was down which meant relative they were about the same price, its only now the Aussie dollar is strong that they might seem expensive. Anyway who'd be stupid enough to sell one of these cheaply ...
 
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