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Old Sep 5th 2018, 09:14 PM   #1
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Joined: Apr 2018
From: Auckland NZ

Posts: 5
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I Ride: 2018 959, 2004 749s
Safety Issue - in tank fuel hoses

Recently had my kids' 748 SPS serviced by a local independent Ducati specialist in Auckland New Zealand. Part of the agreed service was to replace the in-tank fuel filter. On removing the tank base, the tech found that the breather hoses were not in great shape and needed to be replaced - as he has done many times before. He reached for his shop roll of Gates Submersible hose only to find that he had used the last of the roll a couple of bikes earlier. Off to the local supplier and purchased a 1.0mtr length of the 5/16 hose. He thought that the hose felt softer than what he had been using - the roll he had being using manufactured in 2015 (pretty sure in the USA) vs the new hose which had no Country of Origin markings and was made week 27 of 2017.

Hose was duly fitted and secured with screw type EFI clamps as he had done many times before. Bike was filled up with Caltex 95 at the local gas station and pronounced fit to release to me.

I picked the bike up and gave it a brisk ride back to my workshop - went very nicely with new belts, fluids, 2 x rockers replaced and clearances set. All good.

However, I went back to gaze at it not an hour from arriving back and here it was emptying it's entire fuel tank contents all over the still warm rear cylinder...

One wonders what might have been the outcome had the failure occurred on the motorway whilst I was riding it back. Perhaps my final 15 minutes of fame on the evening News - 'Flaming insurance broker selfishly inconveniences homebound commuters'

A postmortem revealed that the previously trouble free Gates hose had softened after 48 hours in standard pump gas, sufficiently to overcome the EFI clips and become detached from the tank base connection spigots.

The problem is twofold.

Firstly the Ducati tank spigots are an appalling design - tapered with casting draft to facilitate removal from the sand moulds - hello!!!

Secondly, the Gates 2017 hose softening to such a degree that it just squeezed off the connection spigots.

As far as we are aware the previous roll of 2015 hose was made in the USA, whereas the 2017 hose is all made in Thailand.

Gates USA was contacted over 3 weeks ago and has not responded. Gates Australia was contacted and sent a sample of the new hose and have yet to comment and the 2 local Gates representatives in NZ visited, confirmed that the sample I had of their 2017 hose on test had indeed swollen dramatically in Mobil 98 (13.8mm to close to 16.00mm at the ends after 4 days in 98) and haven't been heard from since.

Suspect that there is feverish arse covering going on at Gates and we will never hear back from them with any sort of admission of liability. It will turn out to be the way the Tech fitted the hose or that my immersion tests were completely unscientific conducted as they were in my shed in old yoghurt containers.

I tested 4 different hose samples and the only one which remained stable with no measurable swelling and no discernible softening was the Dayco hose.

I've addressed the Ducati design fault by stripping the tank base, bead blasting and them building up the ends of the spigots with tig weld so that a barb could be approximated.

The tank has been reassembled with the Dayco hose and also the EFI screw clamps replaced with single eared Oetiker clamps.

We are pretty confident that this will be a safe and long lasting solution.

Please share this around, as the saga could have had a very different outcome.

I'll advise if I ever do hear back from Gates.

More info on my facebook page if you are interested.

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007302045338

Three posts headed up 'Hose-Gate'

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