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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey, I found this random blog tonight about a guy who did this conversion. He got flamed big time but I found it interesting. I have to admit I could use a quieter clutch in neutral since I work graveyard hours. My neighbors love me but I know some are starting to get annoyed when me clacking thru the complex @ 3AM. I love the rest of the noise especially in gear w/ clutch pulled.....music!

THE MOD he did.......

1) Source a couple used friction plates. The guys at Ducati Seattle were kind enough to give me two of them after changing someone’s worn out clutch.
2) Remove all of the clutch plates.
3) Begin building the clutch plates back up by placing 1 or 2 of the used friction plates in first…before inserting the two steel plates (which usually go in first). Push the plates(s) in so the tabs seat in the bottom of the basket grooves. The goal is to prevent the “teeth” on the steel plates from touching the bottom of the grooves in the hub. It doesn’t take much to accomplish this, and I only used 1 plate behind the steel plates.
4) Install the remaining plates as usual.
5) Install the pressure plate as usual. You don’t want the clutch pack to be too thick, which may happen depending on your clutch. It happened to me, so I just left out the last friction plate. Turns out I didn’t need the extra old plates…but I didn’t know that beforehand.

So…the result? A gloriously quiet clutch when in neutral with the clutch out. However, the beloved sound with the clutch pulled in still remains, as does all the other dry clutch benefits. Since the friction plate tabs no longer try to beat the clutch basket grooves into submission, I should also see increased clutch life from this mod. Time will tell.

So far I’ve only ridden it on a test ride last night, and to and from work today. Clutch operation feels completely normal. In the name of science I even tested for any signs of slippage by doing a power wheelie from a stop sign on my way home tonight. No slippage!

Now there may be a downside to this mod. The plates are kept from rattling back and forth by being compressed between the pressure plate and back of the clutch basket (via the friction plate behind the steel plates). The may be adding a lateral load to the bearing on which the clutch spins. That bearing may see the load from the hub anyway though…I’m not sure, and haven’t dug out my clutch diagram to investigate. Word is there are quite a few Ducati STs with this mod which have traveled many thousands of miles without an issue. I’m giving it a shot…hopefully I’m not reporting back in the near future with a related problem.

So that’s my story. I’m not suggesting anyone follow suit, as I’m just another internet hack. I just wanted to share my experience, and serve as a role model for those who hate the clack-a-clack-a-clack sound.

Sorry…no photos…I’m a slacker, but the mod is really easy.

Flame suit on! :D
 

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does this change the pack height

I do not understand, are you changing the pack height? I'm not sure how this would make less noise, and I would think that noise weather you like it or not is probably a sign that the clutch is working as engineered, IE a dry clutch.
 

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I did the same mod, also left two springs out just to see if it eased the clutch pull, which it does. Much quieter in neutral, as reported. Clutch does seem to engage "farther out" in the lever travel - not sure what to attribute this to. Not a problem, just different. No slippage or other issues in ~500 miles since.IF you want to quiet yer clutch (I realize some prefer the racket) this seems to work. YMMV. TT
 

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Plates

I enjoyed the part of the plates beating on the basket - just removed a slipper clutch and it's always amazing to see the internal beatings.. Anyway just wanted to say very interesting and thanks for the input
 

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in the blog you read, what were the criticisms?
 

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It sounds interesting, but I wonder what the wear rate will be on the bearing now? And by adding the friction plate first, behind the steel plate, I'm wondering what that might do to the basket and clutch pack as a whole? Please keep us informed as you put more miles on it, especially as the clutch heats up. I wonder if their will be any warpage of the friction plate sitting now on the basket, rather than the steel plate? When metals get super hot, their properties change.. Am wondering if the clutch pack gets too hot, if the friction plate will weld itself to the basket?
As for me, I love the sound of an open dry clutch. That's a Ducati Signature. Just like Harley Trade Marked their Exhaust sound, and the odd firing order, so that their engines would rock around in their tub frames. Makes it unique.
The Duc engine at 90 deg L-Twin is a stressed portion of the frame, hence it doesn't rock around and vibrate like a Hog will. But it will make glorious sounds and the cacophony of the dry clutch is a part of the Ducati's engine signature. Why give up the most recognizable feature of owning a Ducati?
 

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It sounds interesting, but I wonder what the wear rate will be on the bearing now??
Minimal.

And by adding the friction plate first, behind the steel plate, I'm wondering what that might do to the basket and clutch pack as a whole??.
Nothing.

I wonder if their will be any warpage of the friction plate sitting now on the basket, rather than the steel plate?
No.

When metals get super hot, their properties change.. Am wondering if the clutch pack gets too hot, if the friction plate will weld itself to the basket?
No, as it's several thousand degrees short of the required temperature.

Tom
 

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if you do a search on the subject, you find find that 100% of those who made the mod do not return to oem setup.
 

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in neutral. . .

How else are you going to know if your Ducati is running, if you can't hear the clutch jangling?

Fred
 

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Here I was thinking you could judge ones manhood by the loudness of his clutch ... lol
 

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quiet clutch

thanks for this info. I'm curious about leaving out a couple of the springs as was described. I will admit i would not mind less effort at the clutch lever. Any risk or downside to leaving out 2 springs?
 

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I think you should be cautious about leaving springs out. Another option would be to use lighter duty springs.
 

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Done it, it works, no change in the clutch action either. Rather than removing clutch springs, it would be better to install a larger slave cylinder. There are lots of them on the market and not only do they make the clutch pull noticeably lighter, they make the engagement range wider giving you more clutch control.

Jerry
04 ST4s
 

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Done it, it works, no change in the clutch action either. Rather than removing clutch springs, it would be better to install a larger slave cylinder. There are lots of them on the market and not only do they make the clutch pull noticeably lighter, they make the engagement range wider giving you more clutch control.

Jerry
04 ST4s
how are you going to get more range with a bigger slave?your going to have less travel and less disengagement. i'm a skinny old guy and i use two fingers on the lever.i did upgrade to the evoloutione piston with two o rings.
 

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how are you going to get more range with a bigger slave?your going to have less travel and less disengagement. i'm a skinny old guy and i use two fingers on the lever.i did upgrade to the evoloutione piston with two o rings.
Actually you will cover a wider range at the clutch lever, less range at the clutch plates.

Jerry
04 ST4s
 

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Safety

If surrounding motorists can't hear your clutch then you might get run over. (Sorry, I also ride a Harley so my reality is skewed)
:D
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Wow, there were no responses when I first posted this so I didn't think anyone cared! :D I actually tried to answer some earlier questions but for some reason it did not post! Maybe I forgot to log in? :confused:

Most flames were typical.....why would you want to quiet a dry clutch......to possible wear issues. Most who commented on wear issues were speculating since they did not do the mod. I may try this over the weekend.
 

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How else are you going to know if your Ducati is running, if you can't hear the clutch jangling?

Fred
That's the beauty of this mod, you still get the lovely tambourine sound with the lever pulled, but lose the "oops I left a wrench in my crankcase" sound in neutral / lever out...
I did the mod, (a variation) this afternoon, and can hear my arrows for the first time. Feel and engagement point unchanged, still stands up with a crack of throttle, and neutral is easy to find.

Kurt
 
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