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Old 05-25-2012, 08:08 AM   #61
kpt4321
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Like it, or not, Desmo is 100 year old technology.
I'm not necessarily arguing the "truth" of this statement, more the value of it.

These are all equally true:

"Like it or not, the motorcycle is 100 year old technology"
"Like it or not, the (otto cycle) internal combustion engine is 150 year old technology"
"Like it or not, disc brakes are 100 year old technology"

These statements are all technically "true" (on some level), but they don't really have any significant value. Most of the stuff on bikes and cars was "invented" 100 years ago. So what? It has evolved to where it is today (in most cases, better).
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:10 AM   #62
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Originally Posted by kpt4321 View Post
Not, it has not.

It has dropped belts in favor of a chain. The desmo system is alive and well, and Duc credits it with allowing them to run nasty cam profiles, supposedly part of why the engine makes power. Maybe true, maybe marketing hype.
Well, hell.

Guess I need to get back to the Panigale thread and read some more.

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Old 05-25-2012, 08:12 AM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kpt4321 View Post
I'm not necessarily arguing the "truth" of this statement, more the value of it.

These are all equally true:

"Like it or not, the motorcycle is 100 year old technology"
"Like it or not, the (otto cycle) internal combustion engine is 150 year old technology"
"Like it or not, disc brakes are 100 year old technology"

These statements are all technically "true" (on some level), but they don't really have any significant value. Most of the stuff on bikes and cars was "invented" 100 years ago. So what? It has evolved to where it is today (in most cases, better).
Other than the actuation, bevel/belt/chain, tell me how Ducati's Desmo has evolved since the 1950s.

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Old 05-25-2012, 08:14 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by kpt4321 View Post
I honestly wonder how much this is the case. "Normal" shim-on-bucket sportbikes need valve maintenance too, and while it's certainly faster/easier than Desmo maintenance, it's not easy. A guy who can do shim-on-bucket maintenance is going to be able to do Desmo maintenance too, and a guy who can't, is going to pay the dealer either way. In the end, it just means a 300 dollar service vs. a 500 dollar service, every 1-4 years (depending on usage, 15k miles on a sportbike is often quite a few years).

Maybe people are worried about this, but a few hundred dollars every few years just doesn't seem like a big deal. Especially when a set of sportbike tires (which need replacement every 5k miles) is $300+, and a tank of gas is $15 (which means you spend ~$1000 on gas in one 15k valve-check interval).
Extra expense of the Desmo adjustments is the #1 gripe people have about Ducati as potential buyers.
While people swallow tire cost ($$$), they balk solidly at the idea of having to take it to a dealer and pay them to do the special valves.
My bro in law was considering a Guzzi for a while and asked me about Ducati. He pulls down over 6 figures and balked at the extra maintenance. Then he went out and bought a carbon fiber bicycle for 6 grand.
I'm not saying it's rational. Hardly any part of the motorcycle sales process is, doubly so for sportbikes and cruisers.
Customers try to be rational though, and generally have no reason to choose Ducati over another brand when they know little about sport riding and less about valves.
Generally, all I had to do (when I sold bikes) to talk a guy out of Ducati is explain what Desmo is. A guy who can barely wrap his head around a small block chevy's cam and lifter/rocker arm system just boggles when you explain it.
That's not good for sales of Ducatis.
If they made a line of Desmo bikes for the faithful, and a line of shim/bucket bikes for the people who love the sound and look and could give a crap about the internals or winning a podium at Road ATL, they'd probably move a LOT more bikes globally.
I must confess though, I am not an engineer, marketer, or CEO of any major automotive company, so what do I know?
It's not like Guzzi sells a ton of units with their more conventional valve setup.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:17 AM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Other than the actuation, bevel/belt/chain, tell me how Ducati's Desmo has evolved since the 1950s.

In the same ways that all other manufacturers have evolved; through the use of better materials and machining processes.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:23 AM   #66
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In the same ways that all other manufacturers have evolved; through the use of better materials and machining processes.
Oh, good Dog.

Mmmm Kay....

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Old 05-25-2012, 08:25 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Oh, good Dog.

Mmmm Kay....

Oh, please. I'm certainly not a drinker of any one manufacturer's kool-aid.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:28 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Other than the actuation, bevel/belt/chain, tell me how Ducati's Desmo has evolved since the 1950s.

Tell me how valves have evolved since the 1900s.
Tell me how pistons have evolved since the 1900s.
Tell me how cranks, connecting rods, ball bearings... have...
Really, insert almost any engine component here.

Racing cars had DOHC in the 1920s. How has that evolved?

The list goes on and on. I don't understand why you think that desmo is pulled directly out of a motor from 1890, while nearly everything (that isn't computerized) was developed at the same time.

If you want to give some legitimate technical critiques of the desmo system, have at it. If you're going to complain that they we invented before Facebook, I'm afraid I don't see the point.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:58 AM   #69
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Interesting little side note:

On the high-rpm racing engines in MotoGP, teams switch out standard valve springs for pneumatic valve returns (a la F1), because the metal springs are not capable of returning the valves.

Ducati, on the other hand, is able to continue to use their Desmo system (and we can see, based on track speeds, that making power is not a problem Ducati is having).

Ironically, the crappy 1890s technology works, but the "better" sprung valves don't.
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Old 05-25-2012, 09:48 AM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kpt4321 View Post
Ducati, on the other hand, is able to continue to use their Desmo system (and we can see, based on track speeds, that making power is not a problem Ducati is having).

Ironically, the crappy 1890s technology works, but the "better" sprung valves don't.

Yes, and in a way, the wheel has come full circle for Ducati.

Back when the 851 was released, we wondered what was so special about the performance of Duc desmo engines that justified their 5000km valve service intervals.

Now, the desmo actuation is almost justified by the service intervals: at 24,000km between valve checks, you'd just about be prepared to sacrifice some peformance for it. (But of course, don't have to.)
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:40 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by kpt4321 View Post
The list goes on and on.

If you want to give some legitimate technical critiques of the desmo system, have at it.

If you're going to complain that they we invented before Facebook, I'm afraid I don't see the point.
I have not criticized Ducati's Desmo valves in any way. Don't plan to. I like the system.

I'm a Ducati fan. I've owned them. I've worked at a dealership that sold them.

What I was taking exception to was the comment earlier about desmo being "cutting edge" technology. It's not. No current valve actuation system in use in a motorcycle is.

You'd need to go to pneumatic, or something beyond what is commonly available in today's IC engines.

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Old 05-25-2012, 01:00 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Moronic View Post
Yes, and in a way, the wheel has come full circle for Ducati.

Back when the 851 was released, we wondered what was so special about the performance of Duc desmo engines that justified their 5000km valve service intervals.

Now, the desmo actuation is almost justified by the service intervals: at 24,000km between valve checks, you'd just about be prepared to sacrifice some peformance for it. (But of course, don't have to.)
Fair enough.
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Old 05-25-2012, 01:47 PM   #73
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Well, you certainly can't argue the fact that it's won a lot of races with it's antiquated technology, LOL..

Steve

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Other than the actuation, bevel/belt/chain, tell me how Ducati's Desmo has evolved since the 1950s.

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Old 05-25-2012, 04:08 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by kraven View Post
Generally, all I had to do (when I sold bikes) to talk a guy out of Ducati is explain what Desmo is. A guy who can barely wrap his head around a small block chevy's cam and lifter/rocker arm system just boggles when you explain it.
That's not good for sales of Ducatis.
So Ducati should dumb down their product to suit idiot owners? Next thing you know, they'll be selling 'low' versions of all their bikes, and add a bunch of chrome and have belt drive.

For me, most of the mystery of desmo valves was fixed by actually looking at an assembled cylinder head off the motor and watching the cam shaft cycle to open and close the valves, like they have on the showroom at Duc Pond Motorsports. Pretty quickly went from magic voodoo valves to "oh, well that's easy and makes sense. I could at least check those no problem." I'd sure rather do a 2V desmo adjustment than pull the cams on a shim/bucket valve train.
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Old 05-25-2012, 05:53 PM   #75
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So Ducati should dumb down their product to suit idiot owners? Next thing you know, they'll be selling 'low' versions of all their bikes, and add a bunch of chrome and have belt drive.
yeah, we can't have the proletariat riding those things.

It'd put a damper on the wine and cheese valve adjustment socials.
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