My thoughts on the 748... ever evolving thread - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 141 Old 10-11-2006, 08:03 AM Thread Starter
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My thoughts on the 748... ever evolving thread

Thought this would be a good place to describe some of what I did with the 748 over the long track weekend at Jennings. The bike is bone stock except for race bodywork.

A few things in no particular order.

Damn it's uncomfortable. The reach to the clipons and upper body angle really makes it feel tiny, the proverbial monkey humping a football. Can't help but put some weight on your wrists and constantly have to remind yourself not to. Tiring to ride. Hanging off is difficult due to the shape of the tail and seat. I didn't even touch a knee the whole time on the bike and was turning in the low-mid :30's after I started pushing it. I'm 5'11" and about 210lbs all geared up.

4th gear has a problem, caused some false neutrals, had to meter the thottle after shifting into 4th to be sure it caught instead of grenading the engine. When Carlos laid it down he might've been in 4th (coming out of t12 setting up for t13) and the shifter mechanism did have to be replaced. Maybe a shift fork or something is tweaked in there. I don't know enough about Ducati transmissions to make a diagnosis.

There are no drop in cartridges available for the forks (that I'm aware of), so to setup properly might require new forks, the stock Showa forks have no rebound adjustment. Bike bounces like a pogostick until you really push it but the riding position doesn't inspire confidence with all the bouncing.
It's a strange bike to ride, you have to get past the crappy ride and keep pushing it harder and harder (all the while feeling like it's about to wash out on you at any second) but the harder you push it the more it settles down and does the job. Lower speed turns are where the feeling is most evident, you just have to use your legs and get up off the bike and keep pushing it. A full session and your leg muscles are feeling the burn from carrying your body weight. It never did anything scary, just un-nerving to push a bike you don't have confidence in. Almost like having some blind faith that it will do the job, even though it might not feel like it.

Engine pulls very nice and power delivery is predictable - lots of fun to pin it through 6 leaned over and let it spin, but kept banging the rev limiter approaching t12. Solved that by short shifting at entrance to t11 and powering through 12. Ran wide a few times at t14 onto the straight - right to the edge of the rumble strip, attribute that mostly to not having any (I mean no) rear ride height dialed in. Plus I prefer lefts to rights and had to force myself to carve the turn turning it into one long right hander with a shift midway through.

The Brembo brakes feel anemic compared to the BMW, yes the BMW's are power assisted linked Brembo and the GS is usually traveling slower but still felt like I needed to get on the Duc's brakes early and hard. Wanted a little more initial bite, found myself deep trail braking on t1 and t13 a few times, again not something I'm totally comfortable with.

Have to say that the bike only came into it's own when I reached that psychological point of "if I throw it down I throw it down" and just pushed it harder and harder. At that point it's on rails but getting there is a mental debate over risk vs. reward.

Bike has about 1250 miles and I'll change the oil at this point. Can't say that I'd recommend this as a full blown track weapon just yet, it has some shortcomings that would need to be dealt with. I'm not convinced I don't want to give it a shot myself, the exhaust note is intoxicating with stock cans, can't imagine how some fat termi's would make it feel/sound. Power delivery is a little better than expected for a bone stock midsize twin. A part of me says yes, buy it and run the piss out of it, another side says it's not the ideal choice and a SV650 or Triumph 675 would be far more practical.

Next step, dial in some rear height and see what that does. It's at the minimum setting right now so I'm thinking start with 8-10mm and go from there.

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post #2 of 141 Old 10-11-2006, 09:08 AM
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I'd be curious to read an on-track report from a fully dressed 748R.

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post #3 of 141 Old 10-11-2006, 09:10 AM Thread Starter
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I'm curious to know where I'll find the sack of money that would put a 749R in the garage... because I'd give you one helluva thorough report then.

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post #4 of 141 Old 10-11-2006, 09:15 AM
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Didn't you say something about prolonging the purchase of a certain clothing machine?

Nice report though. I'm seriously thinking that if I ever get back on the track, it will be w/ a fully track-dedicated SV650. After watching Aaron Stevenson from Cornerspeed whip one of those around, I could not help but be impressed.

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post #5 of 141 Old 10-11-2006, 10:35 AM
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Nice report Kevin... Not glowing but interesting just the same. I vaguely remember reading similar track experiences with the 748.

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post #6 of 141 Old 10-13-2006, 04:50 AM
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I'm sure LE, GP, Thermosman, or such can dial in those forks. They probably undersprung like most stock bikes. New set of Ohlins are 2200 you may be able to find a set on Ebay. The brakes let me say three words radial master cylinder. Also a set of HH pads wouldn't hurt. The fourth gear problem your on your on own. Is there any good Duck shops in FL.

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post #7 of 141 Old 10-13-2006, 04:55 AM
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Hey Kev... how does the Duc compare to the RC @ Jennigs?

Some days you're the dog... some days you're the hydrant.
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post #8 of 141 Old 10-13-2006, 05:26 AM Thread Starter
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Very similar in that you have a choice of gears you can take any number of turns with because the torque comes on low & early. Once the 748 is setup a little better it should be easier to muscle around 4,5,6, & 10,11. It pulls predictably without ever feeling too light up front, no headshake. Have to really twist to get over 120mph through 2 into 3 without a good early drive out of 1 but during these days I was more concerned with how it was handling through the technical backsection.

I managed to loosen the jam nuts on the ride height adjuster last night but need a larger set of wrenches to spin the adjuster (trip to Lowes will solve that) it's sticking so I WD40'd the threads and will play more tonight. Looking forward to November already, have to find some more corner speed to hang with Tom.

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post #9 of 141 Old 10-24-2006, 04:57 AM Thread Starter
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ok - well you might've read that I committed to take ownership of the 748. Is it a smart decision? I don't know, time will tell. I'm not schoolgirl giddy and don't have a fluttery heart about it.

So why would I choose this route? One word, convenience. It's already here and other than the first 1000 miles I know its history. I have to admit there's an amount of bravado involved in having a Ducati; it's unavoidable. Having done more than a few trackdays this year I can tell you that riding the BMW on the track has become an exercise in futility and an expensive risk since it's my everyday transportation.

Last night I put the Ducati back in street clothes. Still looking through boxes for misplaced parts and need to pick up a couple fuses. It's about 90% back together and hope to have it ready for street duty by tomorrow night. I also got the ride height adjusted and added 10mm of rear height. I might take it to Jennings Saturday just for some leisurely laps to see the effect.

It's up to 1300 miles now so, by some opinions, it's still not broke in. Returning it to street duty will rack up at least 45 miles per day. Not going to be a particularly comfortable ride to work but you can't add miles if you don't ride.

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post #10 of 141 Old 10-24-2006, 05:30 AM
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I will pray for your wrists and lower back as they wallow in anguish on your daily commute.

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post #11 of 141 Old 10-24-2006, 07:38 AM
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It's not that bad. I've done some long rides on my brothers 748s and it was just fine. More comfortable than my bike too.

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post #12 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 07:48 AM Thread Starter
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update - the 748 is back together in street trim and if tomorrow morning's temperature actually meets the forecast I'll ride it to work & begin laying some miles on her.


Must admit, race bodywork makes the bike far uglier than the stock plastics. It's nowhere near as sexy when wearing the racebody. And before you ask, yes I already have an ebay auction or two setup on the auction sniper.

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post #13 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 07:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetblast10 View Post
update - the 748 is back together in street trim and if tomorrow morning's temperature actually meets the forecast I'll ride it to work & begin laying some miles on her.


Must admit, race bodywork makes the bike far uglier than the stock plastics. It's nowhere near as sexy when wearing the racebody. And before you ask, yes I already have an ebay auction or two setup on the auction sniper.
bought for a race bike but taking the race plastic off?? I'm slow but why? Other than they are just so darned bad arse with stock plastics.

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post #14 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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it only has 1350+/- miles on a 5 year old bike. I feel like I need to rack up some miles in the real world so the engine sets properly.

The racebody goes back on in about 45 minutes so that's plenty of time to revert back for the trackdays.

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post #15 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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oh yeah, anyone offer some insight here? I'm going with LED turn signals on the front and there's not enough resistance for them to operate correctly. I'm swinging by radio shack in about a hour and will have to guess at the resistor, will pick up a couple of them. Any idea which range I should be looking?

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post #16 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetblast10 View Post
oh yeah, anyone offer some insight here? I'm going with LED turn signals on the front and there's not enough resistance for them to operate correctly. I'm swinging by radio shack in about a hour and will have to guess at the resistor, will pick up a couple of them. Any idea which range I should be looking?
You will need a couple of 5 ohm 20 watt resistors. These suckers generate some heat, be careful where you mount them. My suggestion is to forget the resistors, pick up a Tridon EL-12 electronic flasher at the auto parts store for around $12. Get the correct spade connectors to fit the flasher.

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post #17 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetblast10 View Post
oh yeah, anyone offer some insight here? I'm going with LED turn signals on the front and there's not enough resistance for them to operate correctly. I'm swinging by radio shack in about a hour and will have to guess at the resistor, will pick up a couple of them. Any idea which range I should be looking?
Here is the pics of the resistors for Rizoma's led lights.

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post #18 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 09:42 AM
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hey have you gotten any pics of this Duc?

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post #19 of 141 Old 10-25-2006, 09:50 AM Thread Starter
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I'll look into a flasher unit. The only pics are in the racebody and nothing special. I'll get some up soon.

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post #20 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 05:32 AM Thread Starter
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1st auction won! I love auctionsniper.com
CF swingarm cover!

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post #21 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 08:11 AM
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ducatis are sweeeeeeeetttt.... i bet that bike i quick

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post #22 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 10:53 AM
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Quote:
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ducatis are sweeeeeeeetttt.... i bet that bike i quick
Have you been hanging around with RC90? What the hell is "i bet that bike i quick?"

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post #23 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:04 AM
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Have you been hanging around with RC90? What the hell is "i bet that bike i quick?"
huh...what you talking about...just thought it was a neat to hear his thoughts on the bike...and my choice of the word "quick" came in mind ...forgot the s in is though

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post #24 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:11 AM
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I was bustin' your chops man, just givin' ya a hard time. It was written in the membership by-laws that you have to be able to accept a certain amount of trash talking to remain a member in good standing on here. RC90 is the resident Engrish challenged soul on the board, thus the comparison.


Soooo, Jet, you gonna post up some pics for us or what?

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post #25 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:29 AM Thread Starter
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no. piss off.





just kidding. Maybe I can get some tonight after I get loaded up for the track. BMW owners trackday Saturday and I'm an instructor. I'm really looking forward to running 4:00 lap times on a 1:25 track.

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post #26 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:45 AM
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Demo rides on the Duc for members attending your BBQ?

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post #27 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:47 AM
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Demo rides on the Duc for members attending your BBQ?
+1 that might just make me have to come then, still don't have the cash but I'll thumb a down for that

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post #28 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:48 AM
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That's what i'm talkin about! Good proposition Mike. I sem to remember another resident ADV'r taking possession of my Strom at a BBQ recently?

Oh, and Bloody Hell if i'll piss off. It's the dog's bollocks for you sir.

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post #29 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
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Demo rides on the Duc for members attending your BBQ?
+1

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post #30 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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through the pasture??





note to self - hide all bikes.

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post #31 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 12:17 PM
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through the pasture??
Once I'm on it don't matter as long as the gate's open

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post #32 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 12:48 PM
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through the pasture??
And over the woods, to Gramma's house we go. Didn't you say that you just mowed? So, that means we still have a mini track day in the field right? We can use the cow patties as apex markers.

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post #33 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 06:11 PM Thread Starter
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just a couple of garage pics. still need to do the 748 sticker on the left fairing and a couple nitpicky things that bug me but got the blinkers installed and she's ready to ride.
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post #34 of 141 Old 10-26-2006, 09:38 PM
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yo jet...i have to come over and check out that hot bike...it looks awesome

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post #35 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 04:03 AM
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Kevin...Staab tells me the rear ride height for the track should be about a +5mm.

Think you can or think you can't, either way you will suceed.
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post #36 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 04:34 AM
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JB10, you know how to make that thing faster?

Let someone else ride it!

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post #37 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 04:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Tom, and Thanks Bill and piss off Mike.



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post #38 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 05:00 AM
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Kevin, did you get the blinkers working?

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post #39 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 05:14 AM
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I see a Dual exit Termig in your future.

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post #40 of 141 Old 10-27-2006, 05:48 AM Thread Starter
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blinkers work - didn't use a resister or anything. I think the last time I tried to install them on the 748 I had them in all 4 corners and had the problem. This time there's an integrator for the rear and it must have more resistance built in because they all work fine.

Termi's? I'm watching a couple of auctions but will probably sort the suspension out first unless a great deal falls in my lap.


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