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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

New member to the forum here and would like to thank everyone for the amount of great content on the site. I have already had several lines of inquiry that have been answered after just a few threads of this forum.

I purchased my first street legal motorcycle on 9/17/21 (2021 Ducati Scrambler DS) and drove it home that day. The bike had incredible acceleration (albeit jumpy at low speeds) and was truly a blast to ride. Since that day I have been on the bike 3-5x week depending on the weather, with most days involving only a 6 mile round trip commute to work on which I rarely break 40mph (2nd gear a majority of the time). I have followed the break-in instructions completely and have not exceeded 6000rpm.

About two weeks in I let a buddy of mine sit on the bike and try to take it for a spin. He made it all of about 6 feet before laying it over in my yard on relatively soft grass. During this fumble about 1/3 of the clutch handle was broken off. I immediately ordered an ASV lever and installed it myself the next week. Other than that, nothing out of the ordinary has happened to the bike. I assume around 100 miles on the ODO at this point in time.

This past weekend I wanted to cruise around town a bit as we had some nice weather. Immediately pulling out of the drive noticed an obvious lack of acceleration although the engine was revving as expected (a slight delay from the throttle being applied; rubber band effect of acceleration). Nearing 200 miles on the ODO at this point. I was out on the highway for a bit and continued to notice this issue slightly increasing. Approximately 30 minutes later I pulled up to a red light and stopped. At take off, I had the bike in 1st gear and let off the clutch. The bike did not move. I pushed it out of the intersection into a parking lot and cycled through all of the gears with the same effect. I ended up having to get a buddy to come pick me and the bike up.

It was at that point I began to scour this forum for any similar instances, of which I found a few that were very similar. After reading all that I could, below are two hindsight observations that might be relevant:
  1. The shift down into first gear was almost always a distinctly loud "click" and did not feel smooth at all.
  2. Neutral was almost impossible to find a majority of the time; although not sure if this was just me not being used to the bike.
I dropped off the bike today (10/12/21) at the dealer with word that they will be able to take a look at it "maybe by the end of the week". I also reached out to the Ducati customer support team today with the same line of inquiry as I'm posting here/whether or not this could be an issue that would fall under their warranty.

I'm writing to find out exactly what could have caused this bike to end up out of commission after less than a month of relatively soft riding? I don't admit to being an expert on the clutch but I have owned and driven manual machines before with no issues and I have never burned up a clutch. Could this have been due to an incorrect installation of the clutch lever? Any thoughts/comments are appreciated.




Thanks all,
 

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It was at that point I began to scour this forum for any similar instances, of which I found a few that were very similar. After reading all that I could, below are two hindsight observations that might be relevant:
  1. The shift down into first gear was almost always a distinctly loud "click" and did not feel smooth at all.
  2. Neutral was almost impossible to find a majority of the time; although not sure if this was just me not being used to the bike.
Both issues are related. Ducati clutches and gearboxes take quite some time to warm up to operate correctly. If you are only travelling 3 miles each way each trip the clutch mechanism is probably not getting up to enough temperature to operate smoothly. when you get the bike back go for a decent ride and let it get up to temperature properly and you should find things operate better.
The trick with getting into neutral is to bring the bike to a stop in first then let the clutch out just enough for it to start grabbing (don't forget to hold the front brake on) then pull the lever back in then the bike will slip into neutral. This is standard procedure on all motorcycles if they won't go into neutral. There is an engineering reason behind this it is something to do with the way the gear selectors work on motorcycles.
Ducati clutches and gearboxes are different to other brands so don't expect Suzuki like gearchanges from a Ducati.

Edit:
When you say there is a clunk shifting into first I assume that you mean when you first start the bike. Try this. Start the bike and let it run for 30 seconds on so. Grab the clutch lever and just pull the lever in and hold it in for 15-20 seconds, release the lever, repeat the holding the lever in bit, release the lever. Now the next time you pull the clutch lever in you should find that the plates are all nicely free and loose and whist you will still get a bit of a clunk it will be lessened greatly.
If the bike is properly warm which take longer than your 3 mile ride would take the clunk will also not be as pronounced.
 

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Ducati clutches and gearboxes are different to other brands so don't expect Suzuki like gearchanges from a Ducati.
I second this - very agricultural in the gear-change department but you kinda get used to this Ducati 'characteristic' after a while.

Hope you get back on the road soon and get to enjoy more miles on the DS.

My clutch was toast at 11000 km but I think that was me not adjusting the freeplay as often as I should have (this won't be an issue on a '21 DS). I can't imagine even an abused clutch packing it in at 200 miles?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Appreciate all the help and input! It sounds like I'll just have to let the bike warm up a bit and maybe also just plan for longer rides during this break in period? And K1W1, I'll definitely be trying out your clutch suggestion on the warm up.

Still, it seems hard for me to believe that something could go so wrong so fast on a bike like this under relatively normal use. The dealership should be getting back to me this weekend or early next week so we'll see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The dealer just called. They took the ASV lever off and replaced with a stock Ducati clutch lever and the problem seemed to disappear. Seems the ASV lever was not allowing the clutch to disengage fully and has been running slightly engaged... which would explain a majority of the shifting issues. I asked if they could just adjust the ASV lever to where it needs to be and was told that there is no way to adjust this exact lever and that it's basically useless on this bike. I asked them to install a stock lever.

I purchased the clutch lever from Revzilla after searching parts specifically for the 2021 Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled (see screenshot attached - fit confirmation at the bottom). I'm assuming this part does not fit the 2021 DS after all... if that is indeed the case I guess I'll take the issue back to Revzilla.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Glad you got it sorted!
Thank you! I appreciate all the help.

Take away here for my issue - the ASV C5 clutch lever assigned to my specific bike (part # CRC552 per the ASV website), when installed and at rest, was keeping the clutch slightly engaged. The lever also did not allow for adjustment like the stock levers can using the threaded adjustment screw.

I got lucky and had kept my stock lever. Delivered it to the dealer today at lunch, picked up the bike today after work and drove her home. All said and done was charged just one hour of labor and the bike is running and shifting as it should.
 

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I have a set of ASV levers I bought for my Honda 2007 VFR. The bike did not shift nor brake as well as stock levers. Good levers cost some coin for a reason.
 
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