ANY QUESTION ANSWERED Q Why has my 1200 Multistrada lost 40bhp?
If we don’t know the answer, we’ll find the person who does What budget waterproof gloves are available? What’s causing my misfire at high engine speeds? Q Can I afford to skip valve clearance checks? Q Andrew Campbell
I picked up a 2012 Ducati 1200 Multistrada last year and it’s given me brilliant service through this mild, but damp winter. But it seems to have lost 40bhp overnight and won’t rev over 7000rpm. There aren’t any error codes and the tank is breathing properly, but it feels flat.
Andrew Bone, email Answered by Neil Barrett, Cornerspeed Ducati I am certain it’s the exhaust valve at fault. Due to its exposed position, corrosion causes it to seize in the closed position. It doesn’t flash up a fault code because the ECU sees the right resistance as the servo motor sweeps back and forth at start-up, but
I’m a novice rider on a budget, and I want some waterproof gloves that aren’t too bulky so I can feel the controls. Harry Forbes, Welwyn
Answered by Keith Roissetter, Infinity Motorcycles Waterproof gloves tend to be aimed at the winter market and are layered accordingly, hence the thickness. Something a bit lighter, in spec and price, should the return spring can’t pull the butterfly valve open as the revs rise and the servo eases off.
Any bikes that suffered this during their warranty period have had the whole £1000 exhaust system replaced.
However, the valve is only there to comply with EU emissions regs by reducing noise at low revs, so you can disconnect the servo cables and lockwire the valve open. That would normally trigger fault codes and a get-youhome engine map. But an ECU reflash will take out the O2 sensors and adjust the weak fuelling to match the increased gas flow, so you’ll get better low-down performance as well for about £230.
see you through the wet days for the rest of the year.
Our pick starts at £17.99 with the Richa Dusk, and the Buffalo Trackers could be worth a punt at £19.99. The ARMR Moto WPL330 don’t seem too thick and shouldn’t break your wallet at £29.99. Have a look in the sale bins of your local shop as most will be clearing waterproof gloves to make room for this year’s summer gloves. I have a 2005 Yamaha R6 that I use for trackdays. It has developed a misfire at high revs and it seems that there is no spark getting to the number three cylinder. I’ve changed the coil packs over, but still no joy. Do you think it’s the wiring or the ECU? Colin Carpenter, email
Answered by Chris Dabbs, MCN This is almost certainly a wiring issue, as an ECU problem would affect more than one cylinder. You have to check that you have continuity by doing a resistance check on the wires from the ECU to the coil packs. There’s no need to disconnect the battery, just make sure the bike is switched off. Do an earth-check to the feeds to coil one and two. Now do the same with the grey feed wire for coil packs three and four and compare the readings. It should show a big resistance figure, indicating a break in the wire from the ECU.
The easiest way of fixing it is to get two to three feet of 12V wire and unbind 4-6 inches of the loom at the ECU and coil pack ends. Check the break is between those two points with the meter, then solder in the replacement wire to bridge the break before tidying it all up again. Make sure the new wire has got some slack so you can tuck it away from any chafing points or hot components like the cylinder head or exhaust system.
I’ve owned my Triumph 790 Speedmaster for 10 years and have never had the valve clearances checked. It’s got 53,000 miles on it and never misses a beat. My mates say if it is running OK, leave well alone, but what are the pitfalls of my ‘wilful neglect’? George Gardiner, email
Answered by Clive Wood, Triumph specialist The latest lubricants mean a modern bucket and shim engine like your Speedmaster will generally only experience real wear to the valve seats. But because bucket and shim motors get quieter, not noisier, as they wear it can lull you into a false sense of security until the valves and seats are so worn that you are looking at cylinder head work. If you consider that a valve-clearance check costs £150 against four figures for head work it’s got to be worth it for the peace of mind. In fact I’d recommend it whenever you buy a used bike, as you are not the only one tempted to skip this vital task…