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Old May 20th 2018, 06:01 PM   #1
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1199 as a track bike? Thoughts and experiences from you guys...

Hi all,

Just wanted to pick your brains and ask some questions about the 1199 as a track bike.

I currently have a K6 GSX-R1000, have had it almost 10 years now and the plan was to convert it to a track bike with quick change axle kits, spare wheels probably aftermarket shock and fork cartridges at some stage, etc. (already have K-Tech Flow Control Valves and piston kit installed late last year and it's a phenomenal difference over the old Race Tech gold valves - but of course now that I've seen the massive improvement from those simple parts now I want more...)

Anyway I've always wanted a Ducati and my wife is onboard, but the question is whether I spend a bunch of money on an 1199 (they're not a cheap bike after all) or do I spend a bit less (but still not a small amount) and trick out the GSX-R? The Gixxer is a great bike, I can't fault it and I've got it really dialled in now, anything I do is just going to make it even better. But it is getting on towards 13 year old technology, it has 50,000km on it (~31,000mi) which doesn't really bother me as it's a rock solid reliable engine. I've asked around local racers and track day fanatics, they think it's not worth an upgrade (from among the Jap bikes at least) unless going to the current 2018 GSX-R.

Would a 2012 model bike (1199) be noticeably better than my K6? I've never ridden one, and a road test wouldn't give much useful info if I want to make one a track bike - but I hear a few negatives about it lacking front end feel or having a crazy power curve because of the oversquare engine design. Can anyone with an 1199 track bike comment on this? What changes/mods have you done (if any)? Is it good as a track bike in stock form or are there some things you'd definitely change before the first time you even take it on track?

Could any track day guys also comment on running expenses - how often do you do oil & filter changes etc.? How often for major services etc.? Is it possible to do a lot of work on them yourself? I believe the 1199 engine is a lot less costly to maintain & service than the older 1198, 1098 etc.?

Also I've had Bazzaz Z-Fi with quickshift and traction control on my Gixxer for years, so the electronics upgrade isn't that much of a drawcard - unless it's just that much better on the 1199?

Cheers for any info, interested to hear thoughts from you guys!
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Old May 20th 2018, 07:33 PM   #2
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I Ride: 1199 - - - - - - - - - R1200GS Rallye X - - - - - Sherco 300SEF-R - - - - -
Sounds like your happy with the k6 and it has all the bits on. I’d just update to a newer model and move everything across! I had someone ride around me on the track on Friday on one and I have a trick 1199 that I’ve spent a packet on.
If you’ve got plenty of cash welcome.
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Old May 20th 2018, 08:01 PM   #3
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I just like riding Ducati's it makes my track experience better . There are no bad bikes are there they will all do the job .
I like to work on my own bikes I find working on a ducati enjoyable . They are no harder to maintain than a Japanese bike .I find them an exciting bike to ride not as clinical as a Japanese bike .
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Old May 20th 2018, 08:48 PM   #4
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I Ride: 1199 - - - - - - - - - R1200GS Rallye X - - - - - Sherco 300SEF-R - - - - -
I hate it when people talk sensible
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Old May 20th 2018, 08:54 PM   #5
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Haha cheers guys.

Sometimes it does my head in - thinking how bikes from the last 10 years are basically the same, you want massive performance, more power etc. but at the end of the day itís still the rider that makes the most difference. But on the flip side - what a time to be alive!!
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Old May 20th 2018, 09:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by mugget View Post
Haha cheers guys.

Sometimes it does my head in - thinking how bikes from the last 10 years are basically the same, you want massive performance, more power etc. but at the end of the day itís still the rider that makes the most difference. But on the flip side - what a time to be alive!!
Yep your on it . The electronics work well and you should be able to find one at a reasonable price these days .
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Old May 21st 2018, 03:27 AM   #7
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I Ride: 2012 1199S - 2006 Husaberg 450E BMW K1300S 1978 Ducati 900SSD
Originally Posted by mugget View Post
Haha cheers guys.

Sometimes it does my head in - thinking how bikes from the last 10 years are basically the same, you want massive performance, more power etc. but at the end of the day itís still the rider that makes the most difference. But on the flip side - what a time to be alive!!
Last time I was at the track and was chasing a young guy in my group, I thought to myself here I am on my 1199 and I cannot catch this guy on his brand new GSX750. Anyway I later passed him after out braking him and thought is was just down to the good ol brembos. Later in the pits while chatting about out little duel which was great fun, I looked over and saw that it was a GSX1000. That was last year. I don't push too hard and not up to racing standard but I think my 1199S makes up for my lack of skill. Like Wilks says I just like being on a Ducati and tinkering with it. I do not race but sure like riding on the track. If I was buying one for racing, I would buy a second hand R. My 2 cents.
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Old May 21st 2018, 07:29 AM   #8
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I Ride: 1199s Tricolore Race Bike
I had a triumph race bike before I had my 1199s. I could keep up with the bigger bikes on the triumph everywhere except the straights. My advice is to track the bike you can afford to write off. If you are worried about how much something costs when you are trying to advance your skill levels it will actually hinder your progress. The only reason I have the 1199s is because the triumph transmission was made of neutrals and it would send me flying off track without engine braking. The panigale I picked up was cheaper than a new gearbox .
Thanks from mark419ny
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Old May 21st 2018, 07:37 AM   #9
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I Ride: Panigale, CRF450, CRF50, GROM, bionicon supershuttle
For just for fun you will have a ball on the 1199- which is plenty of a challenge

The gixxer will probably be easier to ride especially since you know it very well.

If you wanna develop YOUR skills to get faster, get a slow bike , Ninja 250 or SV 650 Which will suck donkey balls on track days because of everybody passing you on the straights, so just go race him right away

Last edited by Phl; May 21st 2018 at 10:15 AM.
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Old May 21st 2018, 09:41 AM   #10
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I Ride: 2012 1199S, 2008 Speed Triple
I've got 15,000 miles on my 2012 1199S, perhaps 10,000 of which is road work before I converted it to track only. Other than upgrading the radiator to deal with 90+ temp and 90%+ humidity, I'd say you won't spend more than you would converting any other bike from road to track. (Oh, and replacing the valve-cover bolts with some drilled, titanium bolts drilled for safety wire. They tend to vibrate loose if they are not safety wired.) For the first couple of years, all I did was tape up the lights!

I LOVE riding my 1199S track bike; it gives me so much joy and it is so much fun on the gas or the brakes. The front end is solid and I've never had an issue with lack of feel; however, I am not really racing (done one race weekend) and I can only imagine what better "front-end feel" actually feels like. I regularly out-brake people into corners and pass them on the outside in corners. Corner speed is excellent. But... if you really want to be the fastest bike on track, you'll get smoked by new bikes with the latest electronics. And, it is definitely not the easiest bike to ride fast.

Regular maintenance is pretty much do-it-yourself; however, the 15,000-mile service is expensive because it is about a 14-hour job.

If I was to do it again, I might just order a bespoke track bike - An AP Moto Arts Yamaha FZ-07R. See: FZ07R
Thanks from Phl

Last edited by Styler; May 21st 2018 at 09:50 AM.
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