Ducati GT 1000 Blog – Page 2
January 3, 2007 – As promised, here’s the review article with tips on installing them on the GT1000!
February 9, 2007 – A Cold, Hard Winter!
Wow! The weather went from being very unusually warm to very unusually cold! It’s the coldest February in 30 years in these parts, some of the old-timers are telling me. I haven’t done a thing on the GT since January, when we had some days in the 70’s!
And the cold weather hit so fast, I didn’t even have time to winterize the bike, or the lawnmower.
In the meantime, reader M.C. sent us this info on his GT1000:
I�ve had my GT 1000 for about 4 months now and am loving it more and more over time. I purchased the saddle bags when I bought the bike and they are relatively useful, although somewhat limited by their shape. They also make it a little tricky for my passenger to find the rear foot pegs.
If you haven�t been contacted by Ducati about your ECU (electronic control unit) yet, check it out � it may be under a recall. My bike was raspy and sputtery at low rpms and backfired a lot under heavy deceleration. When I inquired at the dealer about it, they told me about the recall.
After having the new ECU installed, the bike runs smooth as silk, which should make around town driving a little more tolerable.
When you go to the dealer to have this replaced, make sure to bring both black keys and your red key since they have to program them all for the new ECU. I was not told this so I got to make an extra trip to the dealer with my full range of keys in order to get it all done properly.
Another important modification I made was to replace the �bug antenna� mirrors with handle bar mirrors. I originally ordered the custom mirrors from Ducati, but the picture in the catalog was very deceiving and when Installed, I found those mirrors would only be useful for dentistry � they were so small I couldn�t see anything.
I took them back to the dealer and said �I want the mirrors from the sport 1000 model�. They are handle bar mirrors, but they are large and offer excellent visibility. I’m thrilled with them.
I’m thinking of using the old tapped hole from one of the factory mirrors as a place to mount a GPS unit. I�ll probably take the mirror to my local metal guy and have him cut the stem a couple inches high and then weld a bracket for the GPS. If that works, I�ll take some photos and submit them.
I’m also thinking of upgrading to an air horn system, so if anyone knows of something functional, attractive, and not so wimpy that I could mount where the little cheapo plastic ones are now, I�d love to know about it.
Thanks and safe riding to you all!
Editor’s Note: I recently noticed that one of the original handlebar mirror mounts on the GT1000 uses left-hand threads, so be careful what you screw in there!
GT1000 Rear Luggage Rack
March 16, 2007 – Ducati GT1000 Luggage Rack
Michele from Italy sent an email with information and photos of the Ducati luggage rack for the GT1000. Michele says that he is The happy owner of one Ducati GT 1000, color Ducati Red Anniversary. I am very satisfied: it is the motorcycle I was dreaming about when I was 15 years old, but with the technology of 2006, and am enjoying her very much.
In your fantastic blog, I have read than the user S.J. was looking for a parcel carrier (luggage rack) for (the GT1000). I have found the (official rack in the) Ducati accessory catalogue, and have bought it (130 �): now my passenger feels more safe and I can also load a little luggage.
I will also use this parcel carrier to install two soft saddle bags (I own), for the journeys which I will have. I have also bought, from a retailer of original Ducati accessories, a luggage rack, which I use when I travel without passenger.
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Chrome Wheel Corrosion Problem?
March 21, 2007 – Chrome Corrosion Problem? Another update from W.L. (see Blog Page 2 ):
Just an update from life at the beach. My mirrors and especially my spokes are rusting.
Even though I wash and blow dry the bike every day I ride, the impact side of some of Ducati chrome is going to crap like nothing I have seen before. The impact of salt air is rough on anything but it took my Harley 5 years to show the corrosion the GT1000 has shown in 9 months and 9K miles.
Both mirror and spokes (the front wheel is worst) still shine like new on the back side but are crap on the front side. You may remember I had to get after market buddy pegs for my wife because she could not reach the stock ones around the saddle bags. They have not been affected.
I confronted Ducati’s rep at Ducati Daytona Day. His answer was no warranty on weather related items and yes it looks like Ducati sure used cheap spokes. You might want to let the other riders know about this.
I know corrosion here is bad (Florida) and I expect it. But it could sneak up on someone else as the bikes get older with catastrophic results IE: high speed spoke failure!
I am working with Buchanan Spokes to come up with polished stainless steel replacements. Should have something in a few weeks. As you can see, the rims are still fine.
UPDATE: I just received two sets of Stainless Steel Spokes from Buchanan’s Spoke Rim. They look as good if not better than the originals. I had sent them a spoke to duplicate as all 72 spokes (36 +36) in the Sport Classics are identical.
They now have the specifications for the spokes if anyone else needs some.
It cost me $1.29 per spoke and $1.53 per nipple and another $1.29 to polish each spoke / nipple set. I dealt with Angel. Mon-Sat, 8:30-4:45, (626) 969-4655.
I found them on (the webBikeWorld Motorcycle Wheels page ). If you are not up to lacing you can send them your wheel and they will lace and true for about another $100. Thanks again for all the resources you make available.
More GT1000 Rust: My name is F. from Italy (Rome), proud owner of a Red GT1000, but first of all, thank for keeping this blog!
I’ve just finished reading your last news about rust and corrosion on the bike, my experience is not so bad as your photos show up, but on my GT1000 I noticed some little rust spot on the mirrors, on the (spokes) and on the handlebar. I agree with you when you say that the chrome quality is not good at all.
My bike has never seen any water drop, and has never been ridden below a water storm neither rain,
but as you know, sometimes you can encounter a wet road and some water can touch the bike, and this is the case after which I’ve found rust spots on spikes and handlebar.
Then I bought a special paste to clean up the rust from the chrome parts, and this works fine but the local dealer told me to not clean the rust, rather to make the rust grow in order to justify a new handlebar (we have 2 years warranty). Now I’m wondering if I had a good advice.
A strange thing I noticed is that the chrome quality is different from part to part, the beautiful chrome exhaust does not show any rust spot or corrosion, but it has been touched by the same amount of water.
My bike sleeps in a safe closed box with other bikes, casually, there is also an old HD 883 which looks beautifully (for the chrome parts) and it did not present any rust or corrosion, so I agree with you when you say about the VERY poor chrome quality on the GT1000.
I guess soon I will claim about this (not so minor) issue directly to the local Ducati dealer, and then directly to Borgo Panigale.
GT1000 Fuel Line Recall Fix
March 7, 2007 – Ducati SportClassic Fuel Line Problem Now an Official Recall
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a recall of 817 Ducati SportClassics for the fuel line problem we reported on back in September of 2006. Here’s the official recall notice and more information, including a drawing of the affected parts.
March 24, 2007 – Fuel Line Recall Fix and Fuel Filter Replacement – Check it out folks, here’s how to do your own fuel line recall fix !
It’s pretty easy and the hardest part is draining the fuel. As it turns out, this is the same procedure needed to replace the GT1000 fuel filter.
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Ikon Shocks for the GT1000
April 21, 2007 – GT1000 Ikon Shocks and ECU Idling Problem: Here’s a note from E.O. regarding some problems with his GT1000:
Greetings! I wanted to give you a quick update on my GT. The Ikon 7614 shocks that I installed several months ago have been absolutely great. Much more comfortable for me and for my wife. She stopped complaining since the changeover.
What’s more, the front end is much more stable, since the bike doesn’t pogo like it did with the Sachs. More control on the rear translates into better handling on the front.
Now, some issues, specifically with idling. About 7,200 miles or so, the bike began acting badly and would not idle properly after a cold start. It would eventually settle down and idle after I got it running and took it for a spin for a few miles, but from a fresh start or after having been left sitting for an hour or so after a run, it just did not want to idle.
I had read on the blog about a potential ECU recall, but when I brought it in for the 7,500 service (at 7,900), there were two recalls – the gas tank one and another for an oil filter screen (the part cost 59 cents. Can’t imagine what the shop will bill Ducati). Nothing in the computer about an ECU issue.
But, after the service, the shop could not get the bike to idle properly. So, they ordered a stepper motor.
Took over a week to arrive, and they just called and said that didn’t work. So I’m wondering if anyone else has experienced an issue with idling, and what the cure for it is? The shop did mention that they will now look at the ECU.
I’m down two weeks now, and quite anxious. Thankfully, I have the Bonnie and a Victory to back me up. But there’s nothing like the rush I get on the GT.
If you have any insight into possible solutions for the GT1000 idling problem, please drop us a line at
NOTE: Owners can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Office of Defect Investigation. Select the File a Complaint link on the left-hand side. Note that it is helpful if you have your VIN number, but it isn’t necessary. If they get enough complaints, they may issue a recall.
Based on my experience, they are pretty responsive on this type of issue.
Follow-up from E.O. (April 27, 2007) : I contacted the SE Ducati Service Rep last Friday, who I know from a personal intro. He contacted the shop wrench, and when I returned this week from an out of town business trip, the bike was all set to go. Seems that when the shop replaced the stepper motor for the idle issue, they failed to calibrate it. All these computer things on bikes today.
So once they found out about that step in the installation process, they were able to get it running right.
The bike now runs much, much smoother (both my wife and I agree), and more powerfully, too. The head wrench said that the valves were found to be over-tight, but are now within spec, so the 7,500 mile service is very important to have performed.
Oh yeah, I specifically mentioned to the wrench that the throttle cables had way too much slack, which he adjusted to spec during the service. The adjustment made a world of difference in 1st gear launches and slow speed maneuvers (U turns, etc.), just like you noted in your report .
Looking forward to this weekend so I can flame a few tanks of gas. I’ll let you know if I develop any other problems, their resolution, etc. No word means I’m out there racking up [s]miles.
From C.F.: I had the exact same problem but not until after I had the GT1000 replacement ECU installed. (Some motorcycle dealers) say it can’t be (fixed). Anyway, I’m having some success with adjusting the air bleed screws. They definitely have an effect on the idle.
I’m still fine tuning but I am pleased with the results so far.
Here’s an update. My bike idled too high (1200-12500) when I backed the air bleed screws out
1-1/2 turns and also had a delayed return to idle. I’ve readjusted to 3/4 turn out and it’s at about 1100-11500. Pretty good and a little stronger than the 1050-1100 it was at before I started all this.
But, the cold start very low idle (950-1000)/stall problem (same as E.O. describes) that appeared after I had the ECU upgraded remains. It idles fast for about 3 seconds and then suddenly drops. By the way, the two shops I’ve asked about this both say it’s normal and that they cannot adjust for it.
From J.C.: Hi. Last November at 1314 miles my GT would not start. My dealer had it for about 6 weeks before calling me to pick it up.
The repairs were covered under warrantee, and the work order shows that some fuel pump clamps and the ECU were replaced.
I’m not certain that the amount of time taken for the repair is significant since it’s New Hampshire that we’re talking about and Winter tends to get in the way of most riding between Thanksgiving and Spring. It may be that the lions share of the new ECUs were sent to warmer climates, but it’s pure speculation.
Prior to the breakdown I’d say that the bike had the same kinds of low-speed surging issues that have been reported by any number of your readers. It’s been much easier to drive with the new ECU. I’ve only had time to run a couple of tanks of gas through it since the repair. It appears that fuel mileage has improved on the order of 10%, but I’ve been close, but have never seen 50MPG.
I’ve noticed that some surging appears to return as the fuel supply shrinks.
I’ve enjoyed the bike aide from those problems. I’ve added the factory comfort seat which my wife reports to be more comfortable than the stock seat. I’ve also added the factory parcel carrier which oddly enough did not come with hardware.
The existing bolts are not long enough and I needed to find some longer ones and some washers. I’ve also replaced the stock chrome lollipop mirrors with black mirrors from a Monster.
I have not observed any chrome problems, but then I haven’t had the bike that long and it’s in a heated garage.
Bar End Mirrors Again
December 30, 2006 – Plenty of surprisingly good riding weather lately, even though it’s December 30! The temperature yesterday reached 58 degrees F!
I lost an Oberon bar end mirror (see article ) — one minute it was there and the next minute I looked down and the left mirror was gone. The Oberons look great but I think there are too many set screws to try and keep tight in the soft aluminum.
So I ordered a set of Constructor’s Racing Group (CRG) bar end mirrors and they arrived very quickly (also available at Bevel Heaven. along with many other types of bar end mirrors). I moved the right-hand Oberon to the left side and installed the CRG on the right, using the 6-7mm or so of handlebar that sticks out from under the twist grip and then installing the Ducati stock bar end weight over it to hold it on.
Works great and the 3 diameter CRG Hindsight LS mirror provides a fantastic field of view — much better than the 2 Oberon. The CRG mirror glass seems to be much higher quality also. I could honestly get away with only the single CRG because its slightly convex shape reveals everything right up to the tail light on the GT!
But I’ll install the left side also and report back within a day or two in a full-length review article with photos. I may have to cut down the foam grip slightly on the left hand side to reveal the same 6-7mm of handlebar so the CRG mirror mount has something to hold on to.
GT 1000 Paint Protection
December 29, 2006 – I’ve been hesitant about cutting my own 3M Scotchcal paint protection film for the GT1000 to protect the paint on the fuel tank. Even though I have a lot of experience with this stuff, it’s very hard to mold it to something like the relatively severe compound curves on the back of the tank.
Chris B. (FJR1300 ) told me about the Tankslappers brand of pre-cut paint protection film, and lo and behold, they have a set for the GT1000. I ordered a set and will report back soon, but I’m not 100% sure that what they’re selling is the same 3M Scotchcal with the sticky stuff on back that I’ve used before in bulk or if it’s the plain clear paint protection film that we used on the old Tiger. Beware of using paint protection film that isn’t sticky — it doesn’t stick!
Anyway, I’ll report back soon.
SportClassic Oil Pickup Screen Confusion
December 19, 2006 – Yet more information added to the GT1000 oil and filter change article ; this time regarding some confusion on how often to remove and clean the oil pickup screen.
SportClassic Owner Report
December 19, 2006 – PS 1000 owner B.S. writes: Determined to make this bike as good as I could for me I replaced the front and rear suspension with the optional �hlins set up, [expensive] with the settings the same as the PS.
Also, since no steering damper is provided nor a lug on the frame to accommodate one, I purchased an �hlins steering damper from Steve Cramer in NZ who also had the appropriate brackets made up and are very well made. Now I have a far more compliant suspension and head shakes are a thing of the past.
At an age of 58 I found the riding position a bit too uncomfortable around town mostly, with wrists and neck complaining the most. I have since replaced the original bars with the optional higher version with much improvement in comfort.
My last change was to replace the gearbox with a tooth lower which means the engine is less likely to �hunt� and low speeds and makes for a better ride around town. Finally, my final challenge appears to be how to best overcome the numbing of my right hand after 50kms or so due to vibration.
Any recommendations please on replacement grips or will more kms lead to a loosening of the engine and less vibration etc?
GT 1000 Throttle Cable Adjustment and Lighting Woes
December 17, 2006 – Can’t believe it’s been almost one month since I’ve posted anything. The weather got cold — well, relatively speaking anyway — and I got tied up with some other projects. But now it’s warmed up again (65 degrees on Dec.
17?!) so I went for a ride.
I think the GT is really coming into its own. It feels like the engine has loosened up and revs harder and smoother. I’m still having a ball riding this thing; each time I get on it I feel like I learn something new about it that makes me like it even more.
I noticed that there seemed to be too much throttle play and I checked it at over 4mm, which is more than twice the minimum called for in the owner’s manual. So I did some tweaking and wrote it up in a separate GT1000 Throttle Cable Adjustment article.
Ducati GT1000 LED Brake Lights and Turn Signals
By the way — I was working on the continuation of the article that looked at different lighting options for the GT1000 (see article ). The GT uses wedge bulbs in the yellow directionals and I wanted to try some wedge-type LEDs instead. I ordered a batch of 921 wedge LED lights and a couple of 1157 LEDs to try in the brake/tail light.
Well, the box never arrived and when I contacted the retailer and the Postal Service, I discovered that the box must have been stolen from my mailbox. Hmmmmm. there’s $110.00 down the drain. I placed a duplicate order and paid extra to have it delivered via UPS.
This time it arrived and I put it aside and. somehow it completely disappeared.
My wife and I have torn apart the house, basement, garage, cars. I’ve looked everywhere and can’t find it! I know it arrived because I ordered a little LED key chain light also and that I have.
So there’s ANOTHER $115.00 down the tubes! This is in addition to the first order I placed when I foolishly ordered a bunch of 1156 LEDs, thinking that the GT must use them in the directionals. So far I’ve blown about $300.00 on LED bulbs and have nothing to show for it!
So, as you can imagine, I’ve given up on this project for now.
Recommended Motor Oil for the GT 1000
November 21, 2006 – I just discovered some important information on the recommended engine oil type for the GT1000; although it’s somewhat confusing, Ducati apparently recommends full synthetic oil. Shell Advance Ultra 4, which is virtually unavailable in the U.S.A. and which Ducati recommends on page 149 of the GT1000 owner’s manual, is a full synthetic oil.
I have created a new cross reference chart on the GT1000 oil change page that suggests possible substitutes for the various Ducati recommend (Shell Advance) lubricants.
Also see the updated entry on the GT1000’s second oil change. using the amazing Motul 300V double ester synthetic oil.
November 11, 2006 – Just posted – basic maintenance article covering a GT 1000 chain adjustment. Not much new here but nice to know that it’s a relatively easy project. Many more webBikeWorld motorcycle chain lube articles here .
LED Brake Light
November 11, 2006 – Check out the SpiderLite folding LED brake light. I tried to install it on the GT but ran into some problems so I’m ordering a spare lens to try again. But this thing is pretty cool, so I thought you might like to learn more!
Building the GT1000
November 3, 2006 – Just found a link on the Ducati website (no longer active, unfortunately) with photos showing the GT1000 in the early stages of development; check out the �hlins shocks on the prototype!
I’m ticked that the weather here is starting to turn cold. Having to ride while bundled up in winter clothing on an unfaired bike isn’t all that appealing to me. just as I’ve finally started to figure out all of the GT’s quirks and it’s starting to feel very smooth to me.
I wonder if putting a couple thousand miles on it has freed up the engine a bit? It seems to be running smoother after the oil change also. And the mirror and handgrip replacement have, I think, made a big difference also.
I’ve also discovered two things – first, the shifter works like a dream, so it pays to learn how to become very smooth when shifting up; the bike really likes a smooth touch. I’ve never owned a bike that had a shifting mechanism this precise — the BMW’s I’ve owned in the past encouraged a very deliberate shifting technique that have created some bad shifting habits on my part.
The GT1000 rewards smooth shifting. Instead of letting off the gas all the way, just back off a tiny bit and touch the shift pedal up and let the bike do the rest. This helps to prevent the bucking on/off feel that I think is partly the result of a too-light flywheel.
It takes some practice, but eventually I have learned to become very precise and smooth on the shifter and it makes a big difference in the bike’s demeanor.
I’m still not fond of the stiffness (firmness) in the forks, and I definitely want to find a way to correct it. Possibly lighter weight fork oil will do it, or maybe a set of the �hlins forks, which I understand will be released soon.
Many Sportbike riders falsely assume that a stiffer suspension must be better (i.e. more racy), but this isn’t necessarily so. A motorcycle’s suspension must be supple enough to absorb all of the irregularities in the road without transmitting them to the rider in a way that upsets the handling or causes unwanted inputs through the handlebars.
I definitely think the GT1000’s front forks should be more pliable (i.e. softer, less firm, more absorbing, etc.), allowing for better bump absorption. This would make the bike much more pleasant overall. In the meantime, the trick is to try and keep as much weight off the handlebars as possible, which isn’t easy with the low bars on the GT.
One way to do this is to squeeze the tank with the legs and knees to stay connected to the bike, instead of keeping all the weight on the hands. This helps to reduce bump steer and also the pre-tank-slapper handlebar shake that some GT1000 riders have reported when cornering on a bumpy surface.
The problem with grabbing the tank with the legs is that the clothing can easily scratch the paint. And that’s why I simply have to get to the installation of the Scotchcal paint protection film as soon as possible. I wish I could find a clear Scotchcal-like film that was also grippy. I’m not referring to the bumpy stuff used on Sportbikes; I don’t think that would suit the GT’s style.
Just some clear, plain paint protection film that has grip.
By the way, you’ll want to make doubly sure all of your braking and downshifting is done before the corners on this bike. I know that’s supposed to be the rule anyway, but it’s extra-important on the GT1000 because two things can happen – if you’re caught in a too-high gear, it will chug and buck through the turn causing some real puckering.
Or, if you downshift too late or are going to slow in the turn and have to give it throttle and you’re in a lower or too-low gear, watch out, because the lack of flywheel effect, the relatively high horsepower and torque and the light weight will catch you out as soon as you touch the throttle!
GT1000 Fly Screen
October 31, 2006 – Happy Halloween! Here’s an article on installing the National Cycle fly screen on the GT1000 (also fits the Sport 1000). It looks great and is very easy to install!
First Oil Filter Change
October 22, 2006 – GT1000 oil and filter change. Lots of information and tips; whether you do it yourself or bring it to the dealer, read this article and learn what questions to ask. UPDATE: Includes info on the second oil change, using Motul 300V synthetic.
Billet Oil Filter Cap
October 21, 2006 – Ducati Billet Oil Filler Cap
I just couldn’t resist adding this aluminum oil filler cap to my Pro Italia shopping cart. I started out looking for a Ducati oil filter wrench (more on that in an upcoming article) and ended up with this.
It’s way, way too expensive at $24.95 and I’m disappointed with the quality. You can see in the photo below left that the machining marks are visible all over the grip, underneath the too-thin anodizing.
There are also some burrs along the edge, so someone didn’t pay much attention to detail after it was machined.
The hole is for a safety wire if desired. The cap comes with the O-ring shown in the photo.
It’s available in red, gold, silver or black, and I sort of wish I got the silver, which I think would probably look better on the GT1000 painted engine casing.
A frivolous purchase, to be sure, but hey, it’s a Ducati, and it’s all about the bling, eh?
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