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Old Sep 8th 2016, 12:13 AM   #1
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Ducabike clear clutch cover, and clutch housing? Any issue with Galvanic corrosion?

I forgot where I read it, but is it true that Ducati 1299s's clutch cover is made out of magnesium alloy? If that's true, has anyone that uses ducabike clear clutch cover experience any galvanic corrosion issue with the aluminum cover on the magnesium housing?

I believe they are .7V's away on galvanic scale which is not a good thing as for as galvanic corrosion goes.

I love the look of them, but probably wouldn't spend the money on them if there is any known issue with them seizing on the housing due to galvanic corrosion...

Even DP makes a AL clutch cover protector which in theory, isn't all that good for the mag housing that's mounted on. Unless anyone knows somehow all these metal are treated with some coating that prevents galvanic corrosion.

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Old Sep 8th 2016, 12:29 AM   #2
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Whilst Ducati touts these covers as being made of 'magnesium alloy' by the look and feel of these castings, particularly the weight and coloration, they exhibit more in common with an aluminium housing that has been sprayed in colour to match, than a true Mg part, which tends to have a rougher surface (take a look at the airbox on a Superleggera for instance, which has a much cruder finish or Marchesini magnesium wheels) Also I have seen a few Panigales with scratched or damaged clutch covers following a low-side or that have toppled over and even after a few days there was no sign of corrosion. Magnesium alloy reacts extremely quickly when exposed to oxygen, if the paint is worn through to expose the bare metal and requires specialized chemicals to treat the bare metal prior to re-painting, to kill the corrosion process, else it will simply come back through the paint time and time again, so I am doubtful of the claim.

Factor in also that Magnesium castings are also extremely expensive to produce (commonly found in aviation components, where weight is critical) and on anything less than a limited edition model, I just don't think it would be cost effective for Ducati to include them on mass produced models. There may well be an element of Magnesium in the alloy but it wont be a true Magnesium casting, for all the reasons mentioned. Ducati use a 'vacural casting' method to produce the engine's alloy parts for minimal weight. I don't know if this is possible with magnesium however. Again I doubt it, but someone correct me if I am wrong.
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Last edited by topolino; Sep 8th 2016 at 12:40 AM.
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Old Sep 8th 2016, 01:42 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by topolino View Post
Whilst Ducati touts these covers as being made of 'magnesium alloy' by the look and feel of these castings, particularly the weight and coloration, they exhibit more in common with an aluminium housing that has been sprayed in colour to match, than a true Mg part, which tends to have a rougher surface (take a look at the airbox on a Superleggera for instance, which has a much cruder finish or Marchesini magnesium wheels) Also I have seen a few Panigales with scratched or damaged clutch covers following a low-side or that have toppled over and even after a few days there was no sign of corrosion. Magnesium alloy reacts extremely quickly when exposed to oxygen, if the paint is worn through to expose the bare metal and requires specialized chemicals to treat the bare metal prior to re-painting, to kill the corrosion process, else it will simply come back through the paint time and time again, so I am doubtful of the claim.

Factor in also that Magnesium castings are also extremely expensive to produce (commonly found in aviation components, where weight is critical) and on anything less than a limited edition model, I just don't think it would be cost effective for Ducati to include them on mass produced models. There may well be an element of Magnesium in the alloy but it wont be a true Magnesium casting, for all the reasons mentioned. Ducati use a 'vacural casting' method to produce the engine's alloy parts for minimal weight. I don't know if this is possible with magnesium however. Again I doubt it, but someone correct me if I am wrong.

Yeah, when I first learned the housing is Mg alloy, I started to wonder what type of screw were used for the housing itself and whether or not the screw were wet installed, since most of the common material used to make screws can corrode the housing in no time if it's not wet installed.


Maybe TJ99 can jump in and tell us if there is any concern of galvanic corrosion with the housing.

I do believe what you are saying is correct though, maybe I'm thinking too much but I love this bike, and I appreciate its mechanical beauty like an art. So I certainly hope it will last a long time.
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Old Sep 8th 2016, 04:59 PM   #4
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Think by time Galvanic corrosion starts causing real issues, you would no longer have the bike anymore.
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Old Sep 13th 2016, 12:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by DStyleNZL View Post
Think by time Galvanic corrosion starts causing real issues, you would no longer have the bike anymore.
Not really... Galvanic corrosion can happen pretty fast if the conditions are right... just try to connect a brass fitting hose with an aluminum sprayer, it doesn't take a year before they weld due to galvanic corrosion.
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