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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All,

A little past info on myself. 2010 Ducati 1198 owner. Purchased in June from original owner with 3200 miles. Since then the 1198 is now showing approx 6700 miles. Coming home from Biketober Fest and upon pulling into my garage, shutting it down and stepping off i realized my exhaust was billowing smoke. ( Rolling out even with the 1198 off) I started to think FIRE!!.... But after getting my helmet off, I realized it had a sweet smell. Grabbed some rags and stuffed my Termi's before I got smoked out of the garage. Initial thought, head gasket. I knew my 7500 mile service was coming up and figured things would get pricy so I waited until after the holidays to get it over to Mellimoto Ducati. Well, it got over there last week and they broke it down a couple days ago to verify the horizontal head gasket was or was not the culprit. They Called and told me before the hard work started to, my exhaust pipe was full of coolant and were in fear this could be something other than my gasket. I trust the dealer with everything. Sebastian at Mellimoto is honest and a genius when it comes to Ducatis. His reputation in the Ducati Family is by far as good as it gets. Before I run on about his entire superior reputation let me continue to the important things.. He got my 1198 tore down yesterday and calls with the news There is a pin hole in my horizontal head near my exhaust valves. Coolant is streaming through the hole and right into my exhaust. He swears by this being a casting and manufacturing error and have never seen it on a 1198 with such little milage. Only knew of a few others. And then sent me into shock when he informed me a new head was a few thousand ++ dollars and we're not even talking labor.. I'm the second owner of the 1198. It was purchased new in 2011 and out of warranty in 2013. Sebastian said he'd try his best to get Ducati to honor this head, as its clearly nothing caused by anything other than manufacturing. He said he'd have his answer in a couple days. Well, I'm stressing this. We're talking a bill with my 7500 mile service included in the $5000+ range. I called DNA today. Pleasantly suprised to have someone answer the phone. They couldn't find me as an owner in their system. Understandable, I bought it from the original owner 6 months ago and the first time I've had it into the dealer. They asked my problem. I explained in detail all I knew and what Sebastian told me. They knew him personally, that suprised me. They told me they'd call him and figure out exactly what was going on and then call me back. That was this afternoon. I'm still waiting for the call but I'm hopefull. Has anyone ever experienced a claim after the warranty and had success? This whole situation is going to weigh heavy on me deciding if I'm going to hang up the Ducati helmet and pull the RSV4 back out of hiding and continue my love for Italian motorcycles by sticking to my reliable Aprili. I'm not knocking the 1198 out yet as this is my first DUC and will possibly put a very sour taste in my mouth if this turns out for the worse. The 1198 is amazing. But any breakdown that costs several thousands to repair due to manufacturing errors will make me step away from the brand as I can't afford a $5000+ hit to my bank account everytime the 1198 goes to the dealer. I know I bought it used but the priced I payed could have got me another RSV4 right off the showroom floor. Keeping my fingers crossed. If worse comes to worse, hopefully I can find a used head, get this thing put back together and then put on the market just in time for Florida 70deg riding weather. Keeping my fingers crossed that DNA does what's right and replaces this head. I wouldn't even be pissed if i had to pay labor.
 

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CJB.... Sorry to hear that your 1198 is not well. IMO, DNA should pay for the fix. Parts and labour. It's their part that has failed. This is not a case of negligence on your part....

Best of luck my friend!
 

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I'm going to agree and say that DNA will probably foot the bill. If they don't, try negotiating with them on parts or labor.

Sometimes these things happen, nothing you can really do. All bike manufactures have their share of issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Update: Sebastian called this evening. He says he'll know 100% tomorrow but had good conversation with DNA and he believes they are going to replace parts and partial labor. If this is what happens, Sebastian and Ducati just made a life long customer. I'm rather impressed. I'll continue to update as this moves forward.
 

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Welcome to the forum and sorry for your issues.

Some of the older desmoquattro engines had a similar head cracking issue related to the spark plug hole, oil would drip down from the top of the head and onto the plug. Strange issue caused by a pin hole on the side of the casing. They try to machine the walls very thin and a small mistake in machining can cause a weak wall and next thing you know, a hole develops. Good news is, it's not a common problem at all and it's nothing to really be concerned about in the future.

Yea, I think DNA will take care of it as well. Sebastian is well known in the Ducati community so he probably put in the good word for you. Also, there is no reason to ever buy a new head. Used heads are all over ebay for not much money, less then a grand for both in some cases. If DNA for some reason can't help, it's no big deal to buy a used head and set it up with your existing internals.

Crossing my fingers! Anxious to hear what they say! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update: Ducati is footing the bill on replacing the head! Amazing Core Customer Values! That's a few thousand dollars worth of work. To top it all, Sebastian is going to go ahead and do the 7500 mile service and including changing the belts, fork seals, and vertical head gaskets including having the vertical head and deck machined. All in all the bill is right where it needs to be and better than I thought. Mellimoto is amazing! I hope everyone's dealers and service guys are this good to them. If not, I highly recommend Mellimoto and Sebastian personally!
 

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Ducati is a amazing company
I purchased a 2004 999S from a buddy of mine with 3,950 miles
First week I own it I find out there is a recall on the oil cooler which by the way should of and could of been discovered by the dealer in SB very easily as they had just done a full service to the tune of $1850.00
So I call the Ducati store in Marin they pickup the bike Ducati after 10 years foots the bill & I'm happy as can be with both Ducati as a company & Marin Ducati for being so professional & cool to work with.
I can't say enough about my good experience.
 

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Update: Ducati is footing the bill on replacing the head! Amazing Core Customer Values! That's a few thousand dollars worth of work. To top it all, Sebastian is going to go ahead and do the 7500 mile service and including changing the belts, fork seals, and vertical head gaskets including having the vertical head and deck machined. All in all the bill is right where it needs to be and better than I thought. Mellimoto is amazing! I hope everyone's dealers and service guys are this good to them. If not, I highly recommend Mellimoto and Sebastian personally!
Awesome... Happy for you! Glad to hear Ducati is standing behind their product. Kudos to Ducati!!!
 

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I've never met a motorcycle company that would go to the lengths that Ducati did for me on my new to me 2004 999S a ten year old machine & stepped up to the plate on a new oil cooler.Marin Ducati picked it up to boot & I live 45 miles away !
All no charge
Show me another company that would do that !
Cheers Curtis
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
That's the same reason he wanted to do my belts. Not enough miles but being 5 years old and the overheat from the hole in the head. I told him to do everything he needed to do to make sure the 1198 was 100%. The dealer is 60+ miles away from me. All back roads and they pick up and drop off for free also.. Like I mentioned, I couldn't ask for a better experience or for a more knowledgeable dealer. I can't wait to ride this weekend!
 
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