Fast Bikes - - CHATTER -

Dear ‘dan­ger­ous’ Bruce, Be­ing one of your many many subscribers and also a Du­cati fa­natic I was de­lighted with the ac­tual Du­cati spe­cial that just dropped in our mail­box.

I also agree with your end score 8/10 about the Fi­nal Edi­tion Pani. Other (cheaper) bikes are get­ting as good or bet­ter, that’s mainly why the blokes in Bologna are build­ing a new model I sup­pose; the Pani has had its best (un­less you’re rid­ing WSB spec stuff).

Re­gard­ing the un­sta­bil­ity, which you re­ferred to as a typ­i­cal is­sue with most Du­catis, I would like to ask if you also tried to add more rear preload?

Hav­ing rid­den many Du­catis in the past 20 years, I still keep won­der­ing why they keep on set­ting these bikes up for slow rid­ing or light peo­ple (75kg max with full gear). I don’t know your weight but you def­i­nitely weren’t rid­ing slow ;-).

As a con­se­quence, when ex­it­ing the cor­ner, you ex­tend the rear sus­pen­sion via the chain (an­ti­squat). If you have too much static sag (be­cause spring too soft and/or not enough preload), you’ll also ex­pe­ri­ence a lot of neg­a­tive travel of your rear sus­pen­sion, giv­ing an un­sta­ble feel­ing. The enor­mous torque of a Du­cati only serves to am­plify this ef­fect.

And as a con­se­quence of this ef­fect, your geom­e­try changes as well: rear comes up, and you lose ‘trail’ which makes the steer­ing go from over­steer to un­der­steer in ex­treme sit­u­a­tions. Hence the un­precise steer­ing when ex­it­ing the cor­ner @ full throt­tle. Just my two cents, I must ad­mit that set­ting up my 1198 al­ready has caused me a lot of headaches but once set up well, it still is one hell of a rocket ;-)

Best re­gards, Filip Great to get your take on things, Filip. We worked with the Du­cati guys to try and bet­ter the setup, but with lim­ited time it proved a mis­sion to get the bike at its best. Sounds like we could have done with you there. We’ll know for next time.

Happy to help!

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