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Old Mar 29th 2012, 05:57 PM   #31
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Straight from AJ Ralston - "The 1199 Panigale has an oil pump that creates a vacuum inside the crankcases in order to run more efficiently. The thing is, the vacuum isn't created on initial start up, so it will smoke just a little bit. It's completely natural."
I'm sorry, this is not an accurate explanation. How does an oil pump create vacuum in the crank case?

It doesn't. I see on the ducati website that there is a vacuum pump that acts upon the oiling system:

The journals of the main bearings are lubricated by pressurised oil admitted through ducts inside the engine block. This serves to assure the efficient lubrication of the new crankshaft, followed by a rapid recovery of the oil thanks to a new Ducati component, a lobe pump that places the connecting rod compartment under vacuum, similar to the engines used for the MotoGP races. The pump is driven by gears built in a special high-strength techno-polymer and maintains the crankcase area below the pistons in controlled conditions of constant vacuum, thereby reducing the resistance during the downward travel and assuring an efficient recovery of lubricating oil in any condition of engine use.
Anyway, even if it was an oil pump and it had momentary lag how does that equate to burning oil in the combustion chamber? Is it pumping oil into the intake? I don't see the connection.


I'm sure the smoke has to do with the decompression system:

At the extremity of the exhaust camshaft of each cylinder head is a centrifugal decompressor. On start-up, the device allows the profile of the cam opening lobe to be modified, resulting in a slight lift of the valve that discharges part of the mix contained in the combustion chamber during the engine's compression phase. This effect makes it possible to reduce the resistance to the motion of the piston in the compression phase. Once the engine is started, the increase in rpms and the relative centrifugal force modify the configuration of the device, cancelling the effect of the valve lift and bringing the engine back to normal operating conditions. This ingenious device facilitates the starting of the Superquadro engine without having to use a more powerful battery and a large starting motor, in turn making it possible to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle by 3.3 kg. The system further underlines the synergistic strength achieved by engineers and designers in the intense effort to reduce the bike's weight.

Or maybe the air pump?:
After achieving the goal of improving engine "breathing", the Superquadro engineers turned their attention to the next challenge: to attain an engine calibration that optimally combines the high-performance delivery with regular operation achieved by reducing the cyclic dispersion of combustion. To obtain this, Ducati introduced a system of secondary air that completes oxidisation of the unburnt hydrocarbons, effectively reducing the levels of carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide (CO). The system is controlled by an electronic valve commanded by the engine control unit and is activated according to the specific condition of engine operation. This valve makes it possible to let in the exhaust pipe of each cylinder head (in a position slightly downstream of the exhaust valve) a flow of clean air originating directly from the airbox. A second reed valve located in the engine head makes this flow unidirectional. The controlled inlet of oxygen makes it possible to complete the combustion of outgoing hot gases, eliminating eventual fractions of unburnt fuel which in certain conditions can reach the exhaust.
If it is normal for this bike to burn oil on start-up how did they pass emissions? I'd bet that wouldn't pass the visual in CA. I know it wouldn't here.
If a car or bike shows any sign of visual smoke its gonna fail an emission test.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 06:08 PM   #32
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They even smoke just standing there...

Troy Bayliss told me there was no problem and I believe him, to much being made out of this as I am sure there is a good explanation.
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Smoke from Exhaust-146-1203-04-z-eicma-2011-ducati-ceo-gabriele-del-torchio.jpg  
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 06:32 PM   #33
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What I don't understand is why so many have commented that it's a non-issue in the absence of a legitimate, verifiable explanation. I mean, no one is screaming that the engine is going to disintegrate, that fires are imminent, that everyone should cancel their order before holes are burned in the ozone. If so, then yeah, people need to be told to shut the fck up. In the meantime the rest of us are simply trying to figure out why a modern engine smokes at start up. I wouldn't think anyone who knows anything about engines needs to be told, but apparently the obvious needs to be stated:

Engines are NOT SUPPOSED TO SMOKE.

Not on startup, not on shut down, not under load, not idling, not while downshifting, not with a fox or in a box.

Seems like there could be legitimate reasons why there's a puff of smoke here and there (anti-freeze, exhaust manufacturing flux paste?) that isn't an indicator that something is wrong. No one is ruling out that possibility. But again, in the absence of a reason why a thing is doing something it isn't supposed to be doing it's entirely reasonable to wonder why.

And like bulldog said, there's no f'in way the good old boys at the EPA / CARB board would ever let a manufacturer produce a vehicle that burned oil as a design feature.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 07:45 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by AntiHero View Post
And like bulldog said, there's no f'in way the good old boys at the EPA / CARB board would ever let a manufacturer produce a vehicle that burned oil as a design feature.
Sure they do. Every car powered by a rotary engine.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 07:49 PM   #35
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I know some of us think Ducati owe us an explanation for this.
But I'd suggest it isn't an issue, so they're not bothering.

I know it'd make us feel better about it, but in a month's time, people are going to start posting that it doesn't do it anymore, and the whole thing will be shut down.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 08:58 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by littlejohn View Post
Sure they do. Every car powered by a rotary engine.
I had an RX7 back in the late 80's and it injected oil and antifreeze into the combustion chamber on start-up.
It did not smoke unless for some reason the car failed to start and the injection system stuck open for a bit.
Haha then my car looked like a fog machine if I could get it running
Happened about once a month after the 4th or 5th year of ownership.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 09:00 PM   #37
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My Aprilia RS250V used to smoke
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 09:01 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Rhino View Post
I know some of us think Ducati owe us an explanation for this.
But I'd suggest it isn't an issue, so they're not bothering.

I know it'd make us feel better about it, but in a month's time, people are going to start posting that it doesn't do it anymore, and the whole thing will be shut down.
I don't know if they owe me an explanation but I'm not sure I want to own a bike that smokes like an old POS.

So I guess I'd like to know more before I take delivery.

Last edited by flynbulldog; Mar 29th 2012 at 09:07 PM.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 09:20 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by flynbulldog View Post
I had an RX7 back in the late 80's and it injected oil and antifreeze into the combustion chamber on start-up.
It did not smoke unless for some reason the car failed to start and the injection system stuck open for a bit.
Haha then my car looked like a fog machine if I could get it running
Happened about once a month after the 4th or 5th year of ownership.
My reply was more or less in reference to AntiHero's comment.
But I know what you mean.. I recently got rid of my RX8 after 7yrs of ownership. The flooding issue became more regular over the last couple of years. And like you... the first time she started after a flood, visibility would be down to zero.. lol

I've been to the dealership and seen the Pani running in the flesh. Yes there was a bucket load of smoke, but I'm not concerned because it seemed like low compression smoke due to residual oil in the chambers and exhaust during manufacturing.
It definitely disappears once warmed up. The sales rep told me it was getting less and less each time he started it up for show n tell.
Needless to say, I've got an S on order and am not worried the least bit.
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Old Mar 29th 2012, 11:52 PM   #40
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Some more news.....When they are new they blow smoke, but one of the bikes that has arrived in Australia has now done 200km to get prepared for the journo's and blows no smoke, so news is it goes around 50km.
So it seems as if it is nothing to worry about.

Also news is that this is a good bike to live with day in and day out and is no worries around the city.
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