Ducati Multistrada 1000DS - This is turning in to a career

Published on 14 March 2023 at 16:48

After about 3 weeks of waiting I have at last got a sprag clutch for the Ducati Multistrada 1000ds - the first one never turned up - I strongly suspect it never got posted. The second one came from Lithuania, I simply could not find one in this country. It looked in good nick, putting it in did not take long. The Ducati manual says you need an alignment tool as the sprag outer is a tight fit in the flywheel and the bolt holes have to be lined up precisely. I just put the bolts in from the opposite side and used them to guide it in place, then removed them and put them in the correct way round - it worked perfectly.

I checked everything turned over correctly - it did, it felt so much better than before when the washer was trapped. I noticed that the starter was pulling way less current, so that's all good. What was not so good is that it's leaking petrol from one of the quick fit connectors at the tank end - I need to get a couple of new o rings on there, they run pretty high pressure so any tiny leak can be quite spectacular. Did I mention that I hate this bike?

I turned it a bit to seat it and it's better - good enough for testing anyway. Then I hit the next problem - the battery I bought from ebay wouldn't turn it over, on pressing the starter the terminal voltage fell to about 8 volts - it doesn't even have enough to power the horn. I bought 2 at the same time - one for this and one for my Fazer, just out of interest I checked the Fazer and that was as flat as a witch's tit too. I'm pretty sure they are old stock, I just checked the seller's feedback, I am not the only one to have had problems with them. I shall give him every chance to sort it.

I got my got old jumper battery and pair of jump leads. It was then I remembered a word of warning I had been given about oil pressure and air bubbles you sometimes get when the oil has been drained - well my bike has been empty for 2 or 3 weeks so I thought I would take out the plugs and turn it over until the oil light went out. Except it didn't to start with. I found that by holding the bike so it was leaning at a fairly steep angle to the right seemed to help, eventually it went out so I went for the start. I am glad to say she fired straight up at the first prod and sounded great - it's the first time it has been run with the new injectors installed. I still have a couple of leaks on the exhaust to sort out but at least it's looking viable now. Apart from the neutral light, which hasn't worked since the ecu reprogram. I know the wiring to the dash and the light are ok as it comes on during the self test. I have also tested the switch and the wiring as far as I can, I now need to test it right at the ecu plug. The guy that did the ecu kindly sent me the pin out so I know where to look.

Working on this has been like the death of a thousand cuts, it's not all the fault of the manufacturer although some parts are in my opinion very badly designed. Most of the problems have come from somebody that didn't know what they were doing dicking around with things they shouldn't have been dicking around with. It has, quite frankly, driven me mad. The fact that Ducati parts are ferociously expensive and often hard to find has not helped. Having said that it is a seriously cool bike. The front fairing is an acquired taste, one that I am not convinced I will ever acquire. The rest of the bike, though is just glorious, full of character and very well screwed together. I haven't ridden it yet as I still have work to do before I bolt everything back together, I want to put aa new pair of belts on it as I don't know how old the ones on there are and I can't see a date code. Its about 50 quid for a pair of Daycos, I need to sort the battery issue too.

This will be a damn good bike for somebody, just not for a short arse like me.

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