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Started working on my 900ss about a year and a half ago. Never was really into street bikes until I was given this one. It was my late father-in-laws bike (he was the only owner) so my wife and mother-in-law did not want to see it leave the family (or sit in the garage any longer). So I took it and rehabbed it. I rebuilt the carbs, put an Ignitech unit on it, new tires, new coils.... Got it back to a running state and rode it this past summer. I am a little big for the bike but I love it. I finally decided to get a better seat for it (Sargent), replace the fork springs and install a longer shock. One thing I didn't address was the oil leaking from the head on the vertical cylinder (I wanted to ride it not rebuilt the engine). I have read all about the usual issues these bikes have (cracked frame, oil leaks, broken cylinder studs..) but have not noticed any of these issues except the oil leak..... until last night. I started breaking down the bike so I could replace the gaskets and rings on the top ends. Decided to remove the engine since I have not done this before. Went to remove the starter cable and that is when things got interesting.



After seeing that and realizing that this had just turned into a bit of a bigger project, I checked the vertical studs.



So now my 900ss has fallen victim to the normal Ducati issues. Since I am still new to these bike it is hard telling how long these have been broken. Now that this has become a bigger project I plan on splitting the cases and make sure that the oil galley plug has not started backing out. Let the fun begin!
 

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Hopefully you have better luck than I do. I have had every known Ducati ss plague, as well as, a few others.

These bikes are super easy to work on, and everytime I look at it I know all of the work has been worth it.
 

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Welcome to my world. I bought a low mile SS a few years ago. Rode it a couple years, found crank plug residue, and quit riding it, bought a BEAUTIFUL Monster to ride, (I got the Duc addiction) and now gotta figure out how far to go with this old girl. I told my painter it's the bike I want to be buried with and now any work will have to reflect it, my work or his. All the [email protected]*holes on this forum keep giving me ideas I'm gonna have to figure out how to finance, or budget time to do!
 

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Ha ideas. Someone should take my saws and welders. Here is how mine is sitting at the moment.

If only I could get my hands on a testastrata engine.

Seat mockup
ImageUploadedByMO Free1418766763.279387.jpg
 

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Sorry but it is hard for me to tell from the pictures. I assume you have broken studs? The horizontal looks to be a chrome stud (which were prone to fail) but from the picture the vertical looks dark like a factory replacement stud (these do not fail).

Either way I hope you are in building season like we are in the north east. not much riding up here due to snow and ice so a great time to get to know your bike. I tore a 996 motor apart today with a customer and even though it represented carnage and cash ,he enjoyed it. We can be an odd bunch..lol
 

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Started working on my 900ss about a year and a half ago. Never was really into street bikes until I was given this one. It was my late father-in-laws bike (he was the only owner) so my wife and mother-in-law did not want to see it leave the family (or sit in the garage any longer). So I took it and rehabbed it. I rebuilt the carbs, put an Ignitech unit on it, new tires, new coils.... Got it back to a running state and rode it this past summer. I am a little big for the bike but I love it. I finally decided to get a better seat for it (Sargent), replace the fork springs and install a longer shock. One thing I didn't address was the oil leaking from the head on the vertical cylinder (I wanted to ride it not rebuilt the engine). I have read all about the usual issues these bikes have (cracked frame, oil leaks, broken cylinder studs..) but have not noticed any of these issues except the oil leak..... until last night. I started breaking down the bike so I could replace the gaskets and rings on the top ends. Decided to remove the engine since I have not done this before. Went to remove the starter cable and that is when things got interesting.


After seeing that and realizing that this had just turned into a bit of a bigger project, I checked the vertical studs.


So now my 900ss has fallen victim to the normal Ducati issues. Since I am still new to these bike it is hard telling how long these have been broken. Now that this has become a bigger project I plan on splitting the cases and make sure that the oil galley plug has not started backing out. Let the fun begin!
That's a shame - I'm assuming those are broken studs in the pictures? Or one that's lost a nut, and one broken?

And have you seen all the 'broken stud' threads? They have a lot of good info - and various ways of dealing with any of the many problems that can pop up while trying to remove the studs.

Good luck with it all - at least you're into your winter, so you won't miss too much riding time!
 

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Ha ideas. Someone should take my saws and welders. Here is how mine is sitting at the moment.

If only I could get my hands on a testastrata engine.

Seat mockup
View attachment 483266
How long has that white van been parked there? You and your Duck may be under surveillance:eek:!

Seriously, that looks like a neat project!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That's a shame - I'm assuming those are broken studs in the pictures? Or one that's lost a nut, and one broken?
Yep those are broken studs. The bike has a little over 27,000 miles on it and I do not think the studs have ever been replaced.

Got the motor off the frame last night. There are a couple things that are really bothering me that I need some advice on.

First the final drive front sprocket has a lot of play in it. Is this normal or is it supposed to be pretty tight.
Second I noticed the oil cooler had no oil in it and it looked like nothing had been run through there in a while.

I did not find any metal shavings in the oil or on the oil filter screen so I do not think that the oil galley plug has backed out causing metal shavings to plug the channels that go to the oil cooler (but I could be wrong).

Thanks
 

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"First the final drive front sprocket has a lot of play in it. Is this normal or is it supposed to be pretty tight."

pretty normal, different sprocket brand to brand. Some just make theirs more precise, a little play may allow a bit more misalignment of the chain engine so it is not always a bad thing. Inspect the shaft splines for sure though.

"Second I noticed the oil cooler had no oil in it and it looked like nothing had been run through there in a while."

No oil is not normal, you should test all passageways to make sure it is working. Check that the diverter under the filter is there, if it is not then the oil is not being forced through the converter.
 

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Ha ideas. Someone should take my saws and welders. Here is how mine is sitting at the moment.

If only I could get my hands on a testastrata engine.

Seat mockup
View attachment 483266
Man your right, cut cut cut away :) I have a 01 750ss that I'm trying to figure out what to do with! It's not worth much so I figured I would start messing with it once the 98 933SPS (yes that's right a 933) is all put back together and running. Then I'll stick it in the corner with the other 10 Ducati's I have and start on the 750. I have a sickness see, I can't seem to sell any of my Ducati's....I always say I'm going to but then get to emotionally attached to them and just can't:D.
 

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Yep those are broken studs. The bike has a little over 27,000 miles on it and I do not think the studs have ever been replaced.

Got the motor off the frame last night. There are a couple things that are really bothering me that I need some advice on.

First the final drive front sprocket has a lot of play in it. Is this normal or is it supposed to be pretty tight.
Second I noticed the oil cooler had no oil in it and it looked like nothing had been run through there in a while.

I did not find any metal shavings in the oil or on the oil filter screen so I do not think that the oil galley plug has backed out causing metal shavings to plug the channels that go to the oil cooler (but I could be wrong).

Thanks
OK - re the front sprocket - if the play is side to side - check the little spline 'key' doohickey that bolts to the sprocket - it should have spline teeth to lock into the groove on the countershaft spline - that's what stops the side play of the sprocket. The teeth on the 'key' wear out and disappear. If the play is rotational - then it may just be poor manufacturing tolerances on the sprocket spline (and/or the key worn too). As ducvet says - check the shaft for wear also...

Re the filter - check what ducvet says - that comment about the diverter makes sense to me - or it could be something else (not very helpful, I know...) but you need to check it out thoroughly.
 

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My final drive sprocket has significant play as well, as long as the shaft isn't moving too much I it should be okay.

I think the final drive shaft is supposed to have more play than than all the other shafts in the engine. Seems like the manual calls for around 0.015"

I have some pictures in my rebuild thread about broken studs. I was lucky none of my stock silver studs were broken until the engine spun downward while on the engine stand. Broke one of the studs off about 0.25" below the deck. Lots of welding and praying to get it out, but I did it myself without making a trip to the machine shop.

The whole reason for taking my engine apart was to diagnose excess blowby. Turns out it both relatively new high comp pistons were cracked, due to running lean I believe.

After the heads stud incident I found my galley plug coming out.

Further tear down also revealed cracked wrist pin bushings.

Moral to the story. Don't loose hope, it could be worse. You could have my luck or stupidity lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well things went from bad to worse as I tore into the engine. Went to take the timing belts off and could not get them off the sprockets. I took the tensioners completely off but no joy. I don't know if someone forced some smaller belts on there or what but I ended up cutting them off. They still looked in good shape but I had planned on replacing them anyways because I do not know how many miles they have on them.

Both broken studs broke off at the worst possible spot. Nothing left to get a hold of.



I used to work on old cars a lot so I have experience with this sort of thing but this time I think I am going to leave it to the pros. We have real good machine shop in town so I think I will have them get all the studs out for me.

After that I inspected the oil galley plug. Sure enough it has started to back out.



Funny how I have never found any shavings in the oil. If anyone can recommend a good replacement that would be outstanding.

Something else that worries me is the gear on the horizontal head that the timing belt connects to has a lot of play in it. I can rotate it about an inch before it would catch. The vertical head also had some play in it but not as much (valves were partially opened). My guess is that this is normal when the valves are closed but I am a newbie when it comes to bikes.

Good news is every other major component looks clean. Cylinder walls looked good, piston and piston rings looked good (top was real dirty but I was expecting that), rods looked good and the inside of the case was a lot cleaner than I had expected. Looks like the bike got an oil change every time it needed one.

Since this has turned into more of a job than I had originally thought I think I will just get new final drive gears and a new chain to go along with them. I have found some kits for a pretty decent price.
 

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The cam sprockets will have some free rotation between the lobes.

I may get flamed for this, but I reused the plug. The threads were not damaged, it just loosened itself. I put it back in with red loctite then staked it on 4 sides. 5000 miles later no signs of it coming back out. I will be pulling the heads again soon to fix the dreaded oil leak, and will check it then visually.

I am glad I took my engine apart to fix it. I understand fully most every aspect of the engine. I spent an extra couple of hours making sure to shim every shaft to proper tolerance. I miss gears less often between 4-5,5-6. This happened often before the tear down, has only happened 1 time in 5000 miles since the rebuild, and I may have been light footing it.

I replaced the connecting rod bearings while I was in there because I found the ones I needed on eBay for cheap $30.

I do not have a solution for the jug to head o-ring yet. I just used standard o-rings when I put it back together, and it leaks very badly. I plan to try an oversized viton o-ring and cut it to the proper diameter. This has worked for me on several occasions in the past. Cut the oring at the proper angle for the diameter and super glue it together. Not sure if this will work in this application, but I am going to try it. :)
 

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Jordan, the proper o rings are available, don't cobble it or you'll surely be doing the job twice. If you SEARCH for head oil leak threads, you should find the one I did. My leak was a return orifice that did not line up between head and cylinder. I used a small section of copper tube to act as an inner wall for the o ring. Ducati makes a top end kit which includes base shim and all o rings.
 

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Well things went from bad to worse as I tore into the engine. Went to take the timing belts off and could not get them off the sprockets. I took the tensioners completely off but no joy. I don't know if someone forced some smaller belts on there or what but I ended up cutting them off. They still looked in good shape but I had planned on replacing them anyways because I do not know how many miles they have on them.

Both broken studs broke off at the worst possible spot. Nothing left to get a hold of.



I used to work on old cars a lot so I have experience with this sort of thing but this time I think I am going to leave it to the pros. We have real good machine shop in town so I think I will have them get all the studs out for me.

After that I inspected the oil galley plug. Sure enough it has started to back out.


Funny how I have never found any shavings in the oil. If anyone can recommend a good replacement that would be outstanding.

Something else that worries me is the gear on the horizontal head that the timing belt connects to has a lot of play in it. I can rotate it about an inch before it would catch. The vertical head also had some play in it but not as much (valves were partially opened). My guess is that this is normal when the valves are closed but I am a newbie when it comes to bikes.

Good news is every other major component looks clean. Cylinder walls looked good, piston and piston rings looked good (top was real dirty but I was expecting that), rods looked good and the inside of the case was a lot cleaner than I had expected. Looks like the bike got an oil change every time it needed one.

Since this has turned into more of a job than I had originally thought I think I will just get new final drive gears and a new chain to go along with them. I have found some kits for a pretty decent price.
Re the studs...

OK - before you get the machine shop to do their 'thing' - read this thread - http://www.ducati.ms/forums/57-supersport/299569-so-cylinder-stud-broke-my-new-me-95-900ss.html - and this one - http://www.ducati.ms/forums/57-supersport/105209-replace-cylinder-studs-1995-ss.html - and this post - http://www.ducati.ms/forums/57-supersport/378482-lots-oil-coming-crankcase-vent-4.html#post3996273 - that lot covers pretty much all of the problems you may run into when removing those studs.

Be warned - the machine shop is likely to NOT be able to machine the studs out - they're as hard as hell (you can't just drill them with any old drill bit!), and Ducati used the threadlock from hell on them too - just to make life REALLY tricky. Some have been able to get the studs machined out - but most end up having to weld a nut onto the studs to remove them - which has the added benefit of warming the threadlock enough that it will release the stud, without ripping the alloy thread out of the cases. Jordans method (the third link) was rather clever!
 

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If anyone can recommend a good replacement that would be outstanding.
The part number for the replacement steel oil galley plug is 78010161A.

What Jordan said,Red Loctite and then stake it in there in multiple places.
 

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I am sure I mentioned this in Jordan's thread but if all else fails removing the stud spark erosion is an option. It is pretty much the only way to remove steel studs broken off from corrosion in an aluminium engine case where there is contact with coolant.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I like the idea of building up a weld onto a nut and getting the broken studs out that way and I am going to go mix up so trans fluid and acetone here in a bit.

As far as the oil plug goes... If all it takes is staking it in there then the one in there now should be fine. I do not think it has backed out far enough to be damaged because I have not found any shavings.

Thanks for all the help everyone.
 

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I am sure I mentioned this in Jordan's thread but if all else fails removing the stud spark erosion is an option. It is pretty much the only way to remove steel studs broken off from corrosion in an aluminium engine case where there is contact with coolant.
The only problem with that option, is that the case(s) have to be immersed in water to do it. Well - that's what I was told when I looked into it...

I like the idea of building up a weld onto a nut and getting the broken studs out that way and I am going to go mix up so trans fluid and acetone here in a bit.

As far as the oil plug goes... If all it takes is staking it in there then the one in there now should be fine. I do not think it has backed out far enough to be damaged because I have not found any shavings.

Thanks for all the help everyone.
Trans fluid and acetone? I'm assuming that's for a penetrating solution?

If you're going to go the weld way - I used an 8mm nut, and 'gasless' wire (because I'm cheap, and was using a small 'handyman' MIG welder), and sprayed LOTS of 'anti-spatter' spray around the top of the cases, to prevent any little 'beads' of weld spit sticking to the gasket surface - plus I packed the hole into the crank with lots of clean rag. Worked well.
As I said previously - I liked Jordans trick of welding into a steel tube, then welding the nut onto that - particularly good if the stud has snapped well down into the hole, as it protects the inside of the case. I'd still use the anti-spatter spray though. Note: I welded through a layer of the spray coating, onto the stud - it seemed to stick OK. I was pretty gentle working the stud out though - just in case...
 
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