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Thread: TheBenior's GTI and Ducati Monster 696. Da Bears, dabears, dabears, dabears.

  1. #31
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    Sounds like an awesome wedding gift.

  2. #32
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    He has joined the darkside...

  3. #33
    Spiny beast TheBenior's Avatar
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    Last hurrah for the GS550, a 40 mile round trip ride though the city with a fellow UJM:
    IMG_20141019_163913.jpg

    At the end of the day, I started tallying up all the parts that the GS550 could stand to have replaced and weighing all the time I don't have to work on it now that I have a house and have been pulling extra shifts at work. Replacement parts alone matched or exceeded the value of the bike before any labor costs were factored in.

    So far, I've only ridden the Monster 696 home from the shop, so here are some quick thoughts:

    -More power is definitely nice.
    -Modern brakes are perhaps even nicer.
    -Bike feels very light (65lbs lighter than the GS550 was), and CoG feels noticeably lower, making parking maneuvers a breeze.
    -Bike reacts much faster than the GS550, making it a bit twitchy at highway speeds in comparison, though it was also really windy today.
    -V-twin surprisingly requires more clutching to avoid stumbling at lower speeds than the GS550 did. Some people switch to a 14 tooth front sprocket to shorten the gearing for better commuting, which I may have to consider.
    -I'll need some sort of luggage solution, as I'll be unable to lash a bag to the short tail of the M696 like I did with the GS550.
    -Lack of fuel gauge and gear indicator are a bit of a disappointment on an otherwise modern bike. I embarrasingly stalled it not realizing that I was in 2nd instead of 1st.
    -Neutral is much less of a step up from 1st gear than it was in my Suzuki and requires a lighter touch not to skip past it.
    -I'm glad that now I only have to deal with carbs in my yard power equipment.
    -Engine break-in is below 6000rpm and varying engine speeds for 600 miles. Which may not happen this year.

  4. #34
    Corvette Enthusiast Kchrpm's Avatar
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    Get that weak shit off my track

  5. #35
    Spiny beast TheBenior's Avatar
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    I briefly buying considered a Ducati-branded Dainese jacket which was 50% off that looked a lot like that.

  6. #36
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    I can attest to dianese quality. I would suggest held for their gloves. I love my Full Metal PROs, but I think held has a more comfortable product.

  7. #37
    Spiny beast TheBenior's Avatar
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    Both were D-Dry jackets, one was all-black with subtle Ducati lettering for $560 msrp, but lacked any reflective bits (seems important to me for a fall/winter jacket), and the other was red/white/black with more blatant Ducati branding for $520 msrp. I'm not real keen on manufacturer-branded gear, but in any case I'd be better off spending money on some non-ventilated gloves and boots for fall. My First Gear jacket is a bit snug for layering when I'm riding to work, but otherwise fine. The only parts where cold seemed to be coming in when I rode the other day was along the cuff, but that could be largely due to my ventilated AlpineStars SP-1 gloves.

    I just found out that Dennis Kirk actually has some pretty decent closeouts in their outlet store. However, their site navigation sucks, so I guess that shouldn't be a surprise

  8. #38
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    Check on dianeses site also. They run the specials too, and sometimes are cheaper than the retailers. The suit I was looking at was 760+ on retailers but 710 directly from the d-store with free shipping.

  9. #39
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    Super. Nice.

    I'm super jelly too.

  10. #40
    Spiny beast TheBenior's Avatar
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    Thanks!

    The dealer still has a 20th Anniversary 696 with the Sport 100 Art Kit in stock, though you'd probably be a bit cramped on one since I think you're a little bigger than me. However, there's also a 2013 796 with the titanium Termignoni pipes for $10k if you want an epic road trip

    Edit: I forgot to mention the story of why the dealer had these leftover 2013s. Turns out that their initial allocation of 2013 Monsters sold out pretty quickly, so they requested more from Ducati. They then waited, and waited some more. Then Ducati sent them more bikes.

    In November. Which was a bit of a backhanded reward in Chicago.
    Last edited by TheBenior; October 23rd, 2014 at 02:59 PM.

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