Tuesday, 16 January 2018

What I've been working on since I crashed my M750 in 2015

In late summer of 2015, I was riding my Monster 750 up around Chinook Pass with a friend one Saturday afternoon. I decided to pull off the two lane highway (SR 410) to take some photos of Mt Rainier, but I took the turnoff too fast and hit gravel. Like a dummy, I grabbed a handful of front brakes while trying to steer. Front braking and steering never work well on gravel; the bike is going to lean over in the direction you are steering. This happened:

The loud rattling at the end was one of the valves smacking a piston. This is because one of the timing belts skipped a tooth when the bike went down; probably because gravel got caught inside the sprockets and belt teeth. Its explained more in Part II of the video above (below):

Rode it down the mountain on a dead cylinder and got it towed from Enumclaw. I managed to get the timing reset properly by reseating the belts but it wasn't running properly still and one of the belts was trying to walk off of the center crankshaft sprocket. Eventually took it to Ducati Seattle, they found the crankshaft sprocket was bent, and when they tried to remove the bolts that secured it, it snapped off. The bike was effectively totaled because the motor would need a complete rebuild, along with body and mechanical damage and it would exceed the value.

I took what Progressive Insurance paid me for the bike, then bought it back to use as parts for the CB500F I was building out (that's in one of my other blogs). I also decided to get another Ducati and spoke with Dave Roosevelt from Seattle Used Bikes. Dave had a 2007 Monster S2R he was selling on consignment for another customer. I gave him a $500 deposit and got a loan for the bike; bought it for $8000.

This bike was dope; had a dry clutch, Arrow exhaust, and a 1000cc dual spark engine. It had problems with the AF mixture, or the map loaded into the ECU though. I couldn't keep it running so I removed the Power Commander III that the original owner had installed and added my PC5 from my M750 and loaded a custom map into the bike.

The photos above are from when the bike was for sale at SUB; over the course of the last two years, I've made a lot of changes, I've listed them below and added photos.
  1. Removed the front fairing over the headlight
  2. Replaced the stock turn signals with LED short stalk turn signals
  3. Swapped the Speedymoto "tall boy" clip on handlebars with the Woodcraft ones from my M750
  4. Swapped the brake and clutch grips and reservoirs with the ones from my 750. The ones the S2R were stock axial type, the front brake grip and reservoir from my 750 was a radial style Chinese Brembo ripoff company called "Brombo" (WTF?). The clutch grip and master was a Brembo radial type. 
  5. Swapped the handlebar grips with the ones from my 750
  6. Swapped the front brake lines with the ones from my 750
  7. Removed the spark plug wires and replaced with some upgraded Magnacore wires. Those weren't cheap either; about $300. I tried using NGK wires and the bike ran like shit, so I went for Magnacore based on reviews I read. I kept the stock wires though just in case.
  8. Replaced the Power Commander III with my PC5 from my M750
  9. Replaced the chain with a new one
  10. Replaced both tires since I blew flats almost within weeks of each other.
  11. Swapped out the rear brake light with an LED light that had integrated turn signals
  12. Got rid of the factory seat and installed my Ducati "Comfort Seat", and it really is comfy
  13. Swapped out the left side engine cover with the powder coated black one from my 750. Also swapped the stator from the S2R with the one from my 750 since the latter was brand new. Oh, and the voltage regulator; I had an extra one that was new; I did that too.
  14. Removed the factory airbox and installed the pod filters and velocity stacks from my 750. Also got rid of the crankcase breather and vented it out to the atmosphere.
  15. My buddy Cal fabricated a new exhaust up for me since he owed me a favor; instead of having it stacked on the right side, now I have one pipe up high on both sides.
  16. New coils, clutch slave cylinder, oil cooler, headlight, and also dropped the front gauge cluster down several inches to make it look more menacing. 
    1. Note- I had to replace the coils because someone pulled one of the horizontal cylinder spark plug wires one day last year when the bike was parked in the parking lot at work. I rode home on only one spark plug in the horizontal cylinder, which could have damaged the coil. I don't feel like the coil going out on the road and having a dead cylinder, so I replaced it.
  17. New oil cooler lines also; one of the old ones was leaking. 
  18. Added a new "open" clutch cover to show the dry clutch and replaced the pressure plate and springs with some powder coated red springs and an anodized black pressure plate
  19. Installed Speedymoto frame sliders.

Experimenting with DIY open belt covers. Used a Dremel to modify the stock covers

I'm happy with the outcome; Cal did a great job with the metal fabrication work. He's a great welder and also a bike builder himself. I'll have to wait though for the sun to come back out in a few months before I can ride it.

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