The following modification might be looked at as a tiny fix, but has
saved me a few grand -- and perhaps even more if I initially knew about
One of the most annoying thing is when my Ducati refuses
to start, as the starter slips and stutters. First I thought this
might be a problem for bikes with a lightened flywheel since this started
to happen after I installed a very light race flywheel -- the starter-sprag
has ever since acted up... and it didn't matter how new the sprag was,
soon enough it begun to slip -- often making it impossible to start the bike at all.
As you might understand from reading some of the other entries on this
web-site, I became compulsive and started to collect info about the
sprag, (I even purchased a crank-shaft seal for a Chevrolet which looked
similar to the spring in the Duc-sprag, which is essentially the weak part).
Anyways, when looking closer at the sprag I could see that the spring which
holds its rollers in place had an "opening" where the spring is "screwed"
together (into its loop). I then cut the spring shorter and put it all back
together, and boom... just like that -- the bike started up as it had
a new sprag.
But infelicitously less than six months later, my starter acted up
When looking at the sprag-spring again I realized that it could have been
cut a whole lot shorter than I initially did -- making it much
snugger. So I did, and needless to say; now it works like a charm..
and this was almost four years ago.
If anyone has questions regarding a bad starter sprag, I'm happy to
answer any question you have. The stuff you'd need in order to do
a hack like this is a 30 mm wrench-socket for the flywheel, a tube
of red lock-tie for the flywheel-nut -- and then, most importantly,
make sure to put the sprag and the stator (amateur for the alternator)
back the same way as you took it off. Note that both the sides of
the stator look pretty much the same which makes it tricky to get
back the right way if you forget to put a marker (or something) on
it to indicate which side is which... By the way, that Chevrolet
crank-shaft seal-spring is too thick... nice try though, eh..?