Ducati / MV / Aprilia Model Specific discussion for the Italian at heart.

 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thumbs up My Ducati 999s Review

Two Words: Freight Train !!!

This thing could not be any more different from my 2003 R1 if it had a mast and sailed on water...

A little background for comparison sake. I sold my 2003 R1 a few months ago to get into a Duc. It was an awesome bike, but I was bored and it's top end power surge really doesn't suit the shorter tracks I ride here at Firebird.

It was well set up with a full Ti Arata system, PCIII USB, Graves stacks, BMC Race filter, Custom map, Race tech springs & valving in the front and stiffer rear spring with Race Tech valving and adj. collar in the rear. I also ran a 180 rear tire and did a 520 conversion (-1/+1).

That said, it was a great bike and I will def miss it

The 999s has some goodies too. Section8 Superbike in Michigan installed an STM Slipper Clutch, Full 57mm Ti Exhaust with Corse ECU and filters, as well as a stiffer rear spring & revalve. They also set the cam timing, blueprinted the fuel injection, threw on a 180 rear and did a 520 conversion (0/+3) alnog with Cycle Cat rear sets.

First thing I noticed climbing on the Duc is how incrediby narrow it is. It really feels thin.

The riding position is very forward compared to the R1 which means a lot more pressure on my wrists. Easy street cruising is less comfortable and turning around to get a good look behind you is a little tougher since your hunched over more.

Start it up and the engine comes alive with a deep thump - almost like it's at the limit of the starter. Every Duc I've been on in the 999 series is like this. It's very different.

There's an incerdibly low thump thump thump from the 90 degree V Twin pumping away through the 57mm system. Def sends a tingle up your spine. This is not the smooth deep mean growl I got from my R1. It's more primal. Like a sleeping dragon! A very cool sound.

The dry clutch adds to the sound track too. For those who have never heard a dry clutch, think "bike sounding like it's about to explode into millions of teeny bits." Like a bad tambourine rattling down there. It's unique and nostalgic, but for the uneducated at a stop light, they're probably thinking "Nice that you can't take care of such a nice bike Jackazz!" Lol !
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 08:29 AM
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Nice preliminary review...




I absolutely love the sound of open/dry clutches...that alone makes me want a Ducati!
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 08:32 AM Thread Starter
 
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Pop it into 1st and the bike shudders. An omen of things to come!

Easing through the gears the first thing I noticed is this bike hates traffic and low speed cruising! Get it into 3rd and over 4k rpm and it begins to sing along happily. Anything under that and it's tempermental. Shuddering, stuttering and flat out hating you on it. I can not imagine using this as a daily driver if you're in any kind of traffic.

This coupled with the heat from the under seat exhaust will probably kill you and the bike. I've heard of the exhaust on these referred to as a toaster. I have to agree from the looks, but from riding it, it's more like a blow torch on your thighs! After 15 min in traffic getting out to some twisties I was pretty sure I could smell my nads buring! Summer ought to be interesting. I will need skin grafts!

So now the fun part. Jump on it and man does this thing respond! Where as my R1 required a downshift or two to really start moving forward, the 999 doesn't. I can even be in a gear thats 1 too high for the situation and the bike compensates easily for my ignorance :p

The power is there from the start. Anything over 3500 rpm and you're in the deal. Linear until you get up over 6k ish range and them it builds steadily. This is where the R1 really differed. The R1 under 6k was ok - hence the multiple downshifts to roll off on someone. The Duc steadily builds like a freight train going down hill! The front end gets light but it's predicable & manageable. No massive white knuckle surge. Just an incredible amount of usable & manageable power at your beck & call. It's not as high strung as the R1 was. The R1 simply exploded in the higher rpm's. Something a little unnerving when you're on shorter tracks and have to manage throttle control with shifting & breaking in short time frames...

Red line on the dyno at break in was somewhere over 11k rpm. In actuality puching this bike past 9750 - 10k really yields nothing. You're better off going to the next gear.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
 
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Agh - I just got called into a meeting - I'll finish this up in an hour or so

Sorry guys :p
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 09:32 AM
 
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psssttt .. what's up with american watches ... ?!
that hour is way past ... get bet to business and finish that review
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:02 AM
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Screw the meeting and finish the review ped ped :


As for this ..........
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZScorpion
Anything under that and it's tempermental. Shuddering, stuttering and flat out hating you on it. I can not imagine using this as a daily driver if you're in any kind of traffic.
....... i know what you mean, but it's not that bad (you're just not used to it). I use the 999R as a daily commuter and love it. :

Now go on......... ped ped
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
 
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So getting on it hard brings you up to speed incredibly quickly but in a confidence inspiring uneventful way. I will add that the sound at this point from the exhaust and intake is great! Something you really need to experience to appreciate.

Turning: Since I was on the street on new tires and it's been pretty cool in the mornings, I didn't push it in any turns. That being said, it became quickly apparent that turning is where the 999 will really excel. Having lighter rims and less rotating mass in the engine than my R1 made the bike turn in with a lot less effort. Makes me wonder what Forged Mag rims would have done to my R1 ! It just goes over very quickly and it's stabile and smooth. Roll on the throttle, counter steer ever so gently and the bike just drops in. I'll post more on this and the suspension after I get it to the track. I didn't get anywhere close to putting a knbee down on the street. Call me a wuss, but it's just not worth it to me :p

The radial brakes are outstanding. I got them bedded in nicely. Easy 1 or 2 finger operation and the set up makes working the brake and throttle easier for me. There's enough power to haul it to a stop from triple digits faster than my mind will allow. I like looking at the front end when it's PARKED!

The clutch is stiff but doesn't require a full pull to engage. More like half or a third, so again, 2-3 fingers to operate. Makes shifting nice as I'm able to snick up & down through the gears with relative ease.

No opinions yet on the STM Slipper clutch yet. I'm still breaking in the tranny and don't really want to miss too many downshifts to test it out yet...
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
 
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In summary, the 999s is a blast. I was smiling from ear to ear every time I got on the throttle, felt the power and heard that V-Twin sound. The looks are awesome and I got a lot of waves or thumbs up from drivers.

This bike is going to have it's hands full keeping up with the latest liter bikes in a straight line. I think my advantage will be drive coming out of corners and the suspension / lighter rims in the corners.

It would have been nice to keep my R1. The bikes are just so different - they really compliment each other, but the cost of the 999s was way too prohibitive.

I'm looking forward to getting this baby on the track. That's where my R1 lived most of it's life and the Duc will be no exception.

I can feel a few road trips to Pahrump, Arroyo Secco and Willow Springs coming up this year!
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:29 AM
 
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soooo sexy of a review!!! damn you!!!!

aprillia rsv...here i come!!!

fak.....what to do about the r1?

ps....i really need to get ahold of you for those barends!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:35 AM
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Nice review, congrats.

Now you really must try her on the track
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 10:58 AM
 
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wish I coulda gotten a ride in before I left...I was looking forward to it. oh well...in time I guess
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 01:05 PM
 
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great post!


someday, someday....
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 02:29 PM
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Man....I'm joanzen for a new sport bike sooooooo bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2000750
Man....I'm joanzen for a new sport bike sooooooo bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Muwahahahaaaa! Come over to the dark side!

Honestly, I can't imagine V-Twins getting much faster than this... Kinda crazy.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 02:34 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MV-999R
Nice review, congrats.

Now you really must try her on the track
Thanks man! I think I need to ship her to Portugal and get her out on a few real tracks!
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