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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys. I ride an F4i but I came over to the Duke forum because I'm thinking about possibly getting a new bike next year or over the winter. Two bikes that I lust over are the new style CBR 1000RR and the 1198 Ducati.
What worries me is the reliability and maintenance costs of the 1198.

I ride more than most people I guess. I've put about 10,000 miles on my bike since late January when I bought it. So if maintenance is significantly more on the Duke it would be hard to justify. I don't want a garage queen, the bike, whichever it is will be ridden and tracked. I can only do basic maintenance, I'm not a mechanic by any stretch of the imagination. I'd like to hear about it first hand.

Hopefully someone here has ridden both.

How much in maintenance costs are we looking at for say 20,000 miles of riding? I can install basic parts, change fluids etc. but I can't do things like valve adjustments.

How many hours can you guys ride in a day? I've done about 7 hours on my F4i and I don't expect to be able to do that on the 1198. The CBR is about 10 degrees more upright.

How reliable do you guys consider the bike to be? I've heard horror stories about Ducatis but I know the newer ones are better. Does the dry clutch go bad easily? What parts do you guys notice going bad the most often?
The CBR seems more practical, but the 1198 is is just soo damn sexy.


I know this is a lot of questions and a doozie of a first post so I apologize. Thanks for any and all help.
 

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How much in maintenance costs are we looking at for say 20,000 miles of riding? I can install basic parts, change fluids etc. but I can't do things like valve adjustments.
The Honda will cost less and most likely require less maintenance. 20K of riding an 1198 will set you back (2) two t-belt/valve adjustment services, which are recommended every 7,500 miles. Add a bunch of oil changes in there as well.

Best advice is ride both of them personally and then make your decision, enjoy !
 

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If you ride that many miles during the year then go for the Honda.
The price of ownership of this things are high.
Not for everyone.
 

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It sounds like you commute on your motorcycles, if so, get the Honda. The Ducati will get hot in traffic, demand you have a strong inner core and require more maintenance.

IF you spend your time in the twisties, get the Ducati. The 1198 is happiest when driven hard and the thrills you receive is more than worth the cost of maintenance. You may become more of a mechanic if you can't find a reputable or close local Ducati shop.

If you think of it as a "car", do you really want to commute in a Lamborgini or a Honda.

In life, there are no free lunches... more thrills means more maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
If you ride that many miles during the year then go for the Honda.
The price of ownership of this things are high.
Not for everyone.
Assuming I change oil and install basic parts, do basic maintenance etc. How much are we talking? More than $1000 for those 20k miles? I don't mind paying more than the Honda but I don't want to go bankrupt.

Also, if I got the 1198 I might just keep my F4i for commuting and stop and go traffic. I think the F4i is one of the best bikes ever made and she would be hard to part with. F4is can go for 300k miles with good maintenance. I don't think she'd bring in much anyways. I paid $2900 for her in January with 22k miles and I've done a lot of customizing since then. Customizing is great for me, but probably not great for the resale value.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The Honda will cost less and most likely require less maintenance. 20K of riding an 1198 will set you back (2) two t-belt/valve adjustment services, which are recommended every 7,500 miles. Add a bunch of oil changes in there as well.

Best advice is ride both of them personally and then make your decision, enjoy !
Jeez, every 7500 miles?? Why so frequent? The Jap bikes need valve adjustments about every 25k. How hard is the valve adjustment to do? Something I can watch on Youtube and try? I don't know much about the belts since I have a wet clutch. Parts expensive? Can any bike shop do it or do I have to go to a Ducati dealer?
 

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The Honda will cost less and most likely require less maintenance. 20K of riding an 1198 will set you back (2) two t-belt/valve adjustment services, which are recommended every 7,500 miles. Add a bunch of oil changes in there as well.

Best advice is ride both of them personally and then make your decision, enjoy !
Belts are every 24000 kilometres/2 years and valve check/adjust is 12000 kilometres
 

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Rational and logical purchase decisions are tough to model for motorcycles... they don't make sense from that perspective.

The Ducati is typically a little further from the logical rational part of that spectrum... and typically closer to the emotional passionate part for most people.

10,000 miles per year and commuting perspective... maintenance cost being a primary consideration... that logic says buy the Honda... a 4 year old Civic ;-)

Excellent modeling and portfolio work though.
 

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Jeez, every 7500 miles?? Why so frequent? The Jap bikes need valve adjustments about every 25k. How hard is the valve adjustment to do? Something I can watch on Youtube and try? I don't know much about the belts since I have a wet clutch. Parts expensive? Can any bike shop do it or do I have to go to a Ducati dealer?
Desmodromic valves require more maintenance than standard ones that close with a spring. The belts are timing, which has nothing to do with what type of clutch you've got. As a side, the 1198 has a dry clutch that will require more upkeep than any other (oil-bath style) clutch. Also you'll have a hydraulic clutch master/slave cylinder setup which will require semi-frequent bleeds.

You can do a lot of it yourself, but the valve part does require special tools and knowing what you're doing (i.e. having done it before). I probably wouldn't trust it to just any bike shop, and DIY valve shimming isn't for the faint of heart. Smart money is on the Honda here, both for maintenance costs and rider comfort.

HOWEVER........

If you test ride a Duc and get bitten by the bug, you'll never ride anything else ever again. In that case it could cost $20k/year and you'll find a way to justify it.;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Desmodromic valves require more maintenance than standard ones that close with a spring. The belts are timing, which has nothing to do with what type of clutch you've got. As a side, the 1198 has a dry clutch that will require more upkeep than any other (oil-bath style) clutch. Also you'll have a hydraulic clutch master/slave cylinder setup which will require semi-frequent bleeds.

You can do a lot of it yourself, but the valve part does require special tools and knowing what you're doing (i.e. having done it before). I probably wouldn't trust it to just any bike shop, and DIY valve shimming isn't for the faint of heart. Smart money is on the Honda here, both for maintenance costs and rider comfort.

HOWEVER........

If you test ride a Duc and get bitten by the bug, you'll never ride anything else ever again. In that case it could cost $20k/year and you'll find a way to justify it.;)
How serious are you about that 20k/ year? That's ridiculous. That's 1$ /mile in maintenance.
 

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How serious are you about that 20k/ year? That's ridiculous. That's 1$ /mile in maintenance.
Not super-serious. But ask anyone who has owned both Japanese sport bikes and Ducatis and they'll tell you... there's nothing like the roar of the v-twin or the pull of its torque to make you forget all about how light your wallet is or how much time you spent with the wrench. And just look at it...

If you're the type of person who treats a motorcycle as an impersonal commodity with finite values (performance per dollar, reliability per mile, etc.) then a Ducati probably isn't for you. There are "better" bikes out there by every measure of the term. But if you're the type that forms an attachment to your machine, delights in making it "yours," goes to the garage just to stare... then the second you throw a leg over a Duc, a cookie-cutter Japanese bike will never be enough.

Ride one. I always tell people that you don't choose a Ducati. It chooses you... or doesn't. You'll see what I mean; you'll either hate it or fall in love instantly. Regardless, you'll have your answer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Not super-serious. But ask anyone who has owned both Japanese sport bikes and Ducatis and they'll tell you... there's nothing like the roar of the v-twin or the pull of its torque to make you forget all about how light your wallet is or how much time you spent with the wrench. And just look at it...

If you're the type of person who treats a motorcycle as an impersonal commodity with finite values (performance per dollar, reliability per mile, etc.) then a Ducati probably isn't for you. There are "better" bikes out there by every measure of the term. But if you're the type that forms an attachment to your machine, delights in making it "yours," goes to the garage just to stare... then the second you throw a leg over a Duc, a cookie-cutter Japanese bike will never be enough.

Ride one. I always tell people that you don't choose a Ducati. It chooses you... or doesn't. You'll see what I mean; you'll either hate it or fall in love instantly. Regardless, you'll have your answer.
I wish I could ride one. Would the dealerships let you? I know most bike dealerships won't let you. I have one friend with a Ducati but he won't let anyone else touch it. I have one friend with an RC51 and he won't let anyone touch it either. Those are the only guys I know with V-twin sports bikes. I wouldn't mind swapping bikes with friends who know how to ride and trying them all out, but most people are anal about it.

I am definitely the kind of guy who stares at my bike and works to makes it mine. My wife hates me for it. Sometimes I just go outside to the garage and look at it and look over all the mods I've done since I've got it.

If anyone here has one near Western/Southern Kentucky I'd love to see it in person.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'm gonna go up to the Ducati dealership and Japanese dealership in Louisville Kentucky next week while I'm there, hopefully I can look all the bikes over. I'll have to call and make sure they have an 1198. If they don't have one in stock are the 848s and 1098s the same size? If I sit on one of those will I get the same body positioning and everything?
 

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How serious are you about that 20k/ year? That's ridiculous. That's 1$ /mile in maintenance.
I think Duc_L_over_V meant to write $2K/year in maintenance which if you ride 10k miles works out to 20 cents a mile. However that $2K/year must not include tires. I go through 2 rears and 1 front Pirelli Supercorsa sp v2 tires every 3k miles. So for 10k miles that would be a little over $2400/year in tires.
 

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Hmmm, I've only ever gone to a handful of Ducati dealerships, but they've all allowed test rides.

Aside from the engine, the 848 and 1198 are essentially the same bike.
 

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I agree with Duc...though that $20k/year cost is greatly exaggerated, unless he added the cost of the bike in there as well. I would say that over a 20,000 mile span, and assuming nothing breaks and all you're doing is riding it around as is, you'd be spending somewhere around $2000-$4000 in maintenance, depending how much of it you do yourself. Aftermarket parts tend to be a bit more expensive as well but not by as much as people might think. For example a set of Ohlins forks is going to cost roughly the same no matter what bike you have....the thing is when you buy used parts, Ducati parts tend to depreciate less, they're not as common as parts for a CBR, so they'll be selling for more.

To me a Ducati is something different, and in a good way. Once you ride a Japanese inline-4 bike, you've ridden them all. They're all good bikes, but a bit boring in my opinion...all the same. The 1198 will put a smile on your face like nothing else! It might be a bit more expensive and might require more attention, but it's worth every penny!
 
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