Monday, 6 April 2009

Living with the 848

Still not run in, but by crikey I'm enjoying it so far! I'm in the second phase of run in now - phase 1 is keep it under 6000 rpm for 10000 km, and phase 2 is keeping it under 7000 until I've done 2500 km. Trust me when I say there's plenty of performance available even with that restriction.

From Ducati 848

I had the rear ride height adjuster fitted at the initial service, and it's improved comfort even more - I'd now say the riding position is very similar to my old Falco. No tourer, that's for sure, but not unbearable.

Unfortunately, there was a problem. I'd also asked Fraser's to back off the pre-load at the rear - it was feeling a bit rigid, and I was getting bugger all sag when I hopped on. Well, they did that OK, but came to report to me that the shock was shocked. When they wound of rebound damping - OK, when they wound off compression damping, the little adjuster just turned and turned. Nothing else happens, the adjuster just turns. It's borked, and that means a new shock, which will be fitted under warranty when it arrives in a couple of weeks.

Rather ironic that the first problem I've had on my Italian motorcycle has been with a Japanese component (Showa shock). ;^)

BUT... despite the problem, the shock feels far better - although I can't help but think a lighter spring might be worth it. It's still quite harsh, but I'll reserve judgement until the shock is replaced and compression can be adjusted.

This bike is serious fun to ride quickly, yet commutes reasonably happily. With run in restrictions, I'm getting 19-20 km per litre - vs a best of 16 km/l for the Aprilia - that's an amazing 25% improvement! A smaller front sprocket will reduce the gearing so that I can use 6th gear when I'm not on the freeway, and will improve acceleration elsewhere./ Might reduce fuel economy as well, but we'll see. I'll get that fitted when the shock is sorted out.

From Ducati 848