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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

I'm finally finding some time to put my starter clutch back together and just saw that my timing gears don't line up.

I took the flywheel assembly out several month ago because the starter clutch started to slip.

Please check out the alignment marks in the photo. I remember that something blocked when I pulled everything apart but I do not recall pulling the small timing gear out and rotating the large gear.

The bike has only 4k miles on it, I'm the second owner, the first owner put only 60 miles on it. I highly doubt anybody else opened up the engine.

So the question is: why are the timing gears misaligned? What could have caused that?

Most importantly what is the correct procedure to align everything correctly? I didn't find that part in the workshop manual.

Am I missing something?

Thanks,

Mike
 

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Ohh that doesn't look to good. Yea, the timing marks should be aligned. I can't imagine how that got out of alignment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
What about if you rotate the gears through 360 degrees a few times maybe then the marks will lign up?
Looks like a second set of timing marks at about 90 degrees, about 12 o clock, to the marks you are showing?
The small gear has 24 teeth and the large one has 48. Every 2 rotations of the small gear the marks have to align. With other words the way they are aligned right now the marks will never be able to meet. There are no other marks.

Does anybody know how to align the gears?
 

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Yes they are 2:1 ratio - hence the name 'half-time shaft'. (Sometimes referred to as a crossover shaft in this engine).

And yes - they should line up every second revolution of the crankshaft (and every revolution of the half-time shaft).

I doubt your engine would run, or have sufficient piston/valve clearance, so far out. Looks like 4 - 5 teeth out in the pic.

Unless the crank gear came away when you were pulling the flywheel/starter gear assembly without you realising. They can tend to stick to the back of the assembly as it is drawn off the shaft.

But it must have got pushed back on in the course of this process, in the wrong alignment..

So the solution is to align the marks correctly, then line up the marks on the other (belt) side of the engine before turning the motor over. After you have refitted the flywheel of course, which retains the crank gear.

Once the engine is all together you need to do a compression test, to establish that 'no valves have been damaged in the making of this movie'..

There seems to be a lot of this confusion with timing gears and pulleys lately. I guess a lot of you guys are doing some servicing before the riding season over there?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes they are 2:1 ratio - hence the name 'half-time shaft'. (Sometimes referred to as a crossover shaft in this engine).

And yes - they should line up every second revolution of the crankshaft (and every revolution of the half-time shaft).

I doubt your engine would run, or have sufficient piston/valve clearance, so far out. Looks like 4 - 5 teeth out in the pic.

Unless the crank gear came away when you were pulling the flywheel/starter gear assembly without you realising. They can tend to stick to the back of the assembly as it is drawn off the shaft.

But it must have got pushed back on in the course of this process, in the wrong alignment..

So the solution is to align the marks correctly, then line up the marks on the other (belt) side of the engine before turning the motor over. After you have refitted the flywheel of course, which retains the crank gear.

Once the engine is all together you need to do a compression test, to establish that 'no valves have been damaged in the making of this movie'..

There seems to be a lot of this confusion with timing gears and pulleys lately. I guess a lot of you guys are doing some servicing before the riding season over there?

Thanks Pat.

How long does it take to tear down the other side in order to get a glimpse at the belts and marks?
 

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All ya gotta do is find horizontal TDC, which is the timing shaft mark on the cases AND the gear marks. Just pull the belt covers off and make the alignment with the marks on the case. Then simply turn the engine over until you get horizontal TDC and that's it.
 

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Ah yes - we really needed your help with this one Tye. You want to add this bloke to the trail of confused owners who you have offered your flawed, simplistic advice on this topic to?

Excuse me OP, but I have had these issues with this clown stalking me onto thread after thread trying to 'one-up' me with his wisdom. For years..

Just to clarify the advice about "simply this" and "simply that" - yes, it only requires the removal of the belt covers, but you need to be aware that there are two Top Dead Centres, if you weren't already.

Only the TDC compression on the front cylinder will line up the marks on the half-time pulley with the crankcase. That is, every second engine revolution.

I suspect that the crankshaft timing gear became displaced during the removal of the flywheel assembly, and once that is rectified the rest will be fine.

But by all means make sure..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Ah yes - we really needed your help with this one Tye. You want to add this bloke to the trail of confused owners who you have offered your flawed, simplistic advice on this topic to?

Excuse me OP, but I have had these issues with this clown stalking me onto thread after thread trying to 'one-up' me with his wisdom. For years..

Just to clarify the advice about "simply this" and "simply that" - yes, it only requires the removal of the belt covers, but you need to be aware that there are two Top Dead Centres, if you weren't already.

Only the TDC compression on the front cylinder will line up the marks on the half-time pulley with the crankcase. That is, every second engine revolution.

I suspect that the crankshaft timing gear became displaced during the removal of the flywheel assembly, and once that is rectified the rest will be fine.

But by all means make sure..

I just removed the tank and the side panels in order to remove the plugs (have to order a long socket first). Without the compression I should be able to easily turn the crankshaft 4 notches back and realign the timing gears.

1.) Do you strongly suggest taking off the belt covers and checking the marks on the other side or could I skip this?

2.) Will I be able to turn the crankshaft by hand somehow? My clutch plates are out and I won't be able to spin the rear in high gear.

3.) I'll also need to buy a new compression gauge. Any suggestion for a brand and model that works good on bikes?
 

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1.) Do you strongly suggest taking off the belt covers and checking the marks on the other side or could I skip this?
All you need to do is see the timing shaft on the right side. If the two marks line up, you're PROBABLY ok. I would for sure check horizontal TDC, no reason to touch the vertical unless you're not sure of the cam timing.

2.) Will I be able to turn the crankshaft by hand somehow? My clutch plates are out and I won't be able to spin the rear in high gear.
Theoretically you could just put it in gear and yank on the rear wheel, this will turn the engine no problem. Make sure it's a tall gear, 3rd, 4th, 5th sorta deal.

3.) I'll also need to buy a new compression gauge. Any suggestion for a brand and model that works good on bikes?
I have a bunch of compression and leak down testers. My favorite is the motion pro. It has a long enough hose and the fitting is small enough to get into the 848/1098/1198 engine spark plug hole without any adapters. Works like a charm every time.

A cold engine should be above 150 PSI, when hot it should be around 180 - 190. I always do a cold compression test first, then warm the bike up to operating temp and do a hot test. This is critical when determining if there is blow-by. However, a leak down test in most cases has more value in the data.
 

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I just removed the tank and the side panels in order to remove the plugs (have to order a long socket first). Without the compression I should be able to easily turn the crankshaft 4 notches back and realign the timing gears.

1.) Do you strongly suggest taking off the belt covers and checking the marks on the other side or could I skip this?

2.) Will I be able to turn the crankshaft by hand somehow? My clutch plates are out and I won't be able to spin the rear in high gear.

3.) I'll also need to buy a new compression gauge. Any suggestion for a brand and model that works good on bikes?
Yes, you can easily turn a Desmo Ducati engine over with the plugs out. One of the virtues of this system, in that it has a lot less frictional resistance during valve actuation than conventional valve springs.

But of course you won't have to turn the cams while the timing gears aren't engaged.

Now you have the tank and sidecovers off you are nearly there. If you haven't had the belt covers off before, you will find the rear a PITA the first time. Only comes off and back on one way.

Questions in order:

1. A tricky one this. If, as I suspect, the gears were only displaced during the removal of the flywheel assembly, then yes - you could miss this step. I guess the choice is yours, but of course the price of turning it over with incorrect timing is very high..

2. Yes, as above.

3. No particular brand. Mine is only a fairly cheap item, and has served me well for about 40 years. Of course it needs a long enough stem to reach down the rather cavernous plug access. And a small enough tip for the smaller than usual plug hole.

As to the plug spanner - you should have a cheap tube spanner in the original toolkit. One of those would be the cheapest solution for the plug spanner if you didn't get the kit with your bike.

It can be difficult to find a socket to clear the narrow hole without being turned down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yes, you can easily turn a Desmo Ducati engine over with the plugs out. One of the virtues of this system, in that it has a lot less frictional resistance during valve actuation than conventional valve springs.

But of course you won't have to turn the cams while the timing gears aren't engaged.

Now you have the tank and sidecovers off you are nearly there. If you haven't had the belt covers off before, you will find the rear a PITA the first time. Only comes off and back on one way.

Questions in order:

1. A tricky one this. If, as I suspect, the gears were only displaced during the removal of the flywheel assembly, then yes - you could miss this step. I guess the choice is yours, but of course the price of turning it over with incorrect timing is very high..

2. Yes, as above.

3. No particular brand. Mine is only a fairly cheap item, and has served me well for about 40 years. Of course it needs a long enough stem to reach down the rather cavernous plug access. And a small enough tip for the smaller than usual plug hole.

As to the plug spanner - you should have a cheap tube spanner in the original toolkit. One of those would be the cheapest solution for the plug spanner if you didn't get the kit with your bike.

It can be difficult to find a socket to clear the narrow hole without being turned down.

Thanks for reminding me of the tool kit, totally forgot about it.

Plugs are out, the front was a PITA.. had to loosen and lift the radiator.

Could easily turn the crankshaft, that was a breeze for a change.

Timing gear is now aligned, check out the photo. I did not spin the timing shaft, only the crankshaft.

Will I be able to see the marks when only pulling the front belt cover or does it have to be both?

@Tuned:

I couldn't spin the rear, there's no connection to the engine without the clutch plates being installed. I have a couple motion pro items, good quality.. I'll order their gauge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
I aligned the crankshaft with my hand without any major resistance:


Driveshaft pulley on other side is lined up with mark:


Front cylinder pulleys are on same position as shown in manual:


With other words: the timing should be fine, right?
And screw that vertical cylinder belt cover, too much crap in the way. And it wouldn't make sense for the rear cylinder to be out of sync alone. The question was if the crankshaft was misaligned towards the driveshaft, not between cylinder A and B. Am I missing something?
 

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Everything looks great to me! It's just a game of line up the dots anyway! LOL :)

Make sure you TURN THE MOTOR OVER BY HAND, before trying to start it. So, keep those plugs out, give it many complete-full rotations until your satisfied it feels ok. It needs to go around at least twice.

FYI: It wouldn't hurt to check the vertical cam timing. I know that cover it a bitch to get off, but it's a lot easier to get off now and check, then it is to deal with it later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Bike is running again and the starter clutch grabs right away :)

Haven't heard her angry rumble in a while, neighbors are awake for sure lol

I hate to let her go now but that is the plan. So if you are looking for a great 2011 1198 SP in red, all stock, only 4 k miles, always garaged, never saw rain, never down, never tracked or raced (have GSX-R 1000 for that), showroom condition, new battery, new rear tire, new fluids, new (and better) starter clutch / starter gear / flange, let me know. It was the last known new Ducati 1198 SP in the dealer network when I bought her in 2012. Title clear and in hand.

Thanks for the help guys!
 

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Gr8 posts Pat.... why don't you come over here and finish building my race motor?....just askin....
:laughing:

Ha ha ha!

Thanks Bob, but I'm avoiding all bike work nowadays.

Can hardly even be bothered working on my own toys.

I just want to ride.

Been getting a bit of that done at least.

Might get in another trip to your country before too much longer.

But guess what? It won't be a 'working holiday'. Just a holiday..

But thanks for the offer!

:)
 

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As I have mentioned before, come the middle of October,.. for the AHRMA Event @ Barber..in conjunction with Vintage Bike Days... and then the Daytona Event is the next weekend along with the CCS Race of Champions.. two gr8 weekends of Motorcycle racing and motorcycling in general!!! Hell, I will bet Neil would even show up for a visit... that would be a hoot... just suggesting...
 

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Nice idea Bob.

And yes - it would be good to meet up.

And to catch up with Neil - I'm sure he would find me less objectionable in person..

Probably not this year. Early retirement hasn't been good for my income.

Good life though.

:smoking:
 
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