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Old Aug 20th 2017, 09:22 AM   #1
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Fitting a Full Akrapovic System, tips and tricks

Hey guys, I recently fitted a full Akrapovic system to my 1299S and thought I'd share some words of wisdom that they don't tell you in the install guide. In no particular order:

Before starting, remove the rear subframe, both sides of the fairings and the fan assembly at the front underside of the bike for decent access to all the nuts and bolts you need to remove. Also, make sure you drain the coolant from the drain bolt on the left side of the bottom half of the radiator, as you'll need to either remove the bottom radiator altogether or remove some radiator hoses to gain good access to certain nuts and bolts.

Rather than install the two headers and connect everything up at the link pipe like the install manual suggests, work from the rear header down and to the front header last. It's much easier to get the front header on than it is to try and align and slot in the link pipes where they meet.

When installing the bottom link pipe (the one that looks like a Y that the mufflers slot into), put the left muffler on the link pipe before you install the link pipe into the rear exhaust curl. It's a major PITA trying to get the left muffler on afterwards due to the bracket on the top of the muffler hitting the bottom of the engine block. Installing both as one unit makes it MUCH easier. The right muffler goes on easily so isn't an issue in this respect.

WD-40/GT85 is your friend. Don't be afraid to use it to help the pipes slide together easier. Once you start the bike after finishing, it'll all burn off as white steam anyway, so won't harm your bike. Give the pipes a wipe down with white spirit or similar before and after starting though, otherwise you might 'spot' the pipes.

If you think it'll be easier to take something off to gain access to bolts, it certainly will be! This is a PITA of a job at the best of times, and it's very easy to admit defeat and say 'I'll take it to the dealer'. Make your own life easier and just take those things off. However, make sure you make a note and take a picture of whatever you're removing before doing so, so you don't forget how it went together in the first place.

USE THE OWNERS MANUAL! It's somewhere on this forum, if you type 'workshop manual' into the search bar I'm pretty sure it comes up. Just having this can give you extra confidence when stripping the bike down.

Don't worry about buying a spring puller tool, cable ties work just as well for a fraction of the cost. You'll want about 20 fairly long ties, some for the springs, and some to secure other parts out of your way (radiator hoses, for example). A useful tip is to tie a few together in hoops (like a chain) to gain length, often allowing you a better position to pull from.


That's about it from me. While I'm not a trained Ducati tech, and there'll be people on this forum who have different ways of doing this, or are more mechanically-minded than I am, these are a few things I learnt from the install experience. I must say that the most satisfying thing wasn't the money I saved, but the satisfaction of knowing that I fitted the system to the bike. I'd be happy to answer any questions or comments, and I'm sure most of these little tidbits probably carry over to fitting other exhaust systems. Happy riding Forum!
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 10:40 AM   #2
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The only thing that you 100% have to remove are the fairings, nothing else. Removal of the radiator and subframe will definitely make it easier to install but isn't necessary. The right tools will make this job possible with the removal of just the side fairings. I used a heavy duty hanger as a spring puller when I installed mine. Did the job just fine. I did need a second hand to hold the bike while trying to get the can on the kickstand side on but I didn't have my center stand at the time.

Good job for doing it yourself.
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 11:42 AM   #3
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Agreed, you don't have to take anything else off but the fairings, but not many people have a toolbox overflowing with options (I don't anyway!), so just for ease, taking the rest off can be a better option. I didn't actually remove either my radiator or subframe, but it made the job a bit trickier. For the 'average person'. stripping the bike a fair bit makes sense I think.

I did think about asking a friend to hold the bike up for me, but I'm too unsociable for that so I found a workaround! I found the most time-consuming part was spending time stood around asking myself 'do I really HAVE to take that bit off?', when the answer was - in my case - almost always yes.
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 12:30 PM   #4
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I only have a 110 piece toolset and a couple of specialty bits but I get what you're saying.

So did you fit the evo system or DP? I'm using the termi upmap on my evo system. Although not the best solution, still better than stock. I ran it without an upmap for a long time n didn't have any issues. I know yours is a 1299 so you can't install the upmap yourself if you chose to go that route so I'd assume you're gonna rapidbike it or custom tune it?

Last edited by double0; Aug 20th 2017 at 12:32 PM.
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 01:39 PM   #5
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Good tips, I have to do mine eventually
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 03:21 PM   #6
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Full evolution system, I had it on my 959 but took it off before I traded it in for the upgrade.

Yeah I've taken mine out since fitting the system and can't say I'm noticing any fuelling issues. I have the performance map off the 959, so I'll ask my dealer nicely if they'll load it for me for free, since they didn't charge me to take it off the 959.

I'm not too interested in RB really, mine is a streetbike and won't be going to the track any time soon, so not really worth the expense. She already has more than enough squirt for the street, so I'll get the upmap put on and leave it at that for now. I might look into having the ECU flashed in the future though.
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 05:57 PM   #7
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Good that you did it yourself. I always admire that. I understand your reasons for removing for removing radiator but do not understand removing the rear subframe. Nothing gets in the way there.

I fitted the full akra system to my 1199 2 years ago. Just used the a pitbull rear stand to lift up the rear. I did a big post on it back then. Normal tools needed. My tip back then was to get a ratcheting 10mm spanner to get the upper horizontal cylinder exhaust nut off. That is the only one that is hard to get to. Put some protective cardboard or similar on the inside of the radiator to stop damage to it.
And buy some spring pullers.
I removed the fan housing and made the radiator loose but there is no need to drain it unless you want to change the fluid. It is a good time to do a oil change if you need to do that.
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Old Aug 20th 2017, 07:55 PM   #8
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my top tip is mentioned above,

always put a piece of cardboard or other protection on the inside of the lower radiator.
I have seen a few incidents of the rad being damaged during fitting and removal.

what you can do to make this easier is to pull the complete rad system forward when its free from its mounts as it is a modular design
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Old Aug 21st 2017, 04:14 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by bradp51 View Post
Good that you did it yourself. I always admire that. I understand your reasons for removing for removing radiator but do not understand removing the rear subframe. Nothing gets in the way there.

I fitted the full akra system to my 1199 2 years ago. Just used the a pitbull rear stand to lift up the rear. I did a big post on it back then. Normal tools needed. My tip back then was to get a ratcheting 10mm spanner to get the upper horizontal cylinder exhaust nut off. That is the only one that is hard to get to. Put some protective cardboard or similar on the inside of the radiator to stop damage to it.
And buy some spring pullers.
I removed the fan housing and made the radiator loose but there is no need to drain it unless you want to change the fluid. It is a good time to do a oil change if you need to do that.
My reason for suggesting removing the rear subframe is that if you don't have a long enough extension, getting to the rear manifold nuts can be a time-consuming PITA, for the sake of removing the four bolts of the subframe. I agree it's not strictly necessary, but it's the way the majority of Ducati techs do it anyway.

I found that getting to one of the bolts that holds the bottom radiator on (top left hand side) was nearly totally inaccessible without moving either one of the radiator hoses, or the battery assembly, in which case it's better to drain the radiator rather than throw coolant everywhere if that's the way you choose to do it. Again, it's something you don't HAVE to do, but if you have a limited toolbox or skillset, it can make the job easier. I wouldn't expect anyone to do all the things I suggested, it's an entirely subjective list. But some people might find things easier by doing some or all of what I suggested. I'm a relative moron when it comes to manual labour, so I'll do anything to make it that little bit simpler!
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Old Aug 21st 2017, 04:15 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Nathanhu View Post
my top tip is mentioned above,

always put a piece of cardboard or other protection on the inside of the lower radiator.
I have seen a few incidents of the rad being damaged during fitting and removal.

what you can do to make this easier is to pull the complete rad system forward when its free from its mounts as it is a modular design
It sure is easier to use cardboard than to have to move a shedload of bent fins back to their original position!
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