Ducati TT 1000 "Super" Bike uses SmartCarb Flat-Slides, Not Keihins

Posted by Scot Wilson on


When we were laying out the design of our Ducati TT 1000 Racer, the discussion turned to carburetors. In doing our research and having used many different carburetors over the years, we decided to use 36 mm SmartCarbs by Technology Elevated over injection and other brands. The purpose of this blog post is not to put down other brands, however, there are some serious benefits that I wish to discuss as it relates to the use of our modern SmartCarb flat-slide carbs.

Keihin has been a performance standard in the racing world for as long as I can remember. I have also used them. It is understandable that many "die-hards" want to stay using this brand. However, the first part of our analysis that directed us to the SmartCarb came from the announcement that the North American distribution center is no longer in existence. "Keihin has officially announced its pending departure from carburetor production for OEM’s, but will continue to supply service items for some time." Old inventory is what comprises the newest items for sale. In contrast, Technology Elevated in the USA is actively developing and refining their flat-slide product and are committed to 4 and 2 stroke applications world wide. 

For our team at Italian Iron Classics, we wanted a product that was more "user-friendly" as it relates to tuning and once set, did not require continual adjustments. As mentioned in earlier blog posts, the benefit of the SmartCarbs is a 30% saving in fuel consumption, 6 to 14% improvement in HP, adaptability to altitude and other atmospheric changes, ease of adjustment and 80% less hydrocarbon emissions. However, ease of adjustment and tuning is the most significant benefits of using our SmartCarb flat-slide carbs over other brands like the Keihin FCR. 

In my previous Blog Posts, I have shared our dyno runs. We have averaged 8% more HP than other published readings for our Ducati 900 ss MHR and our Ducati TT 1000 S2R engines. We continue to look for even more HP and that analysis will continue. Due to the variances of different dyno equipment, I will also be taking our vintage and modern Ducati’s with our SmartCarb’s up to Phoenix for additional dyno runs so that we can provide data that is the most consistent representation of the significant performance benefits of our flat-slides. 

Technology Elevated has done numerous direct comparisons between the 41 mm Keihin FCR which was taken during a Zaeta certification. The green line in the graph is the performance of the Keihin FCR. The red line in the graph is the performance of the SmartCarb. The SmartCarb averaged 10% more HP through nearly the entire power curve. Additionally, the SmartCarb passed emissions without the catylst and improved fuel economy by 26%. Dyno data is shown above and below:

As discussed previously, the SmartCarb is the only “True” single circuit system that utilizes an internally vented and pressurized float bowl with a precision flat ground metering rod. No additional circuitry, such as a pilot system, nozzle jet, or main jet is ever needed. As a result, there is a superior efficiency of the SmartCarb’s single circuit system which delivers all of the fuel in precise mixtures and in a fine vapor state unlike the Keihin that uses a 3 circuit system.


The key to the success of the SmartCarbs is the internal venting and with the pressurized float bowl that produces these significant performance and fuel economy benefits. There are no external overflow hoses to “bleed” pressure from the float bowl. Keihin vents externally to the atmosphere like conventional carbs and as a result cannot fully compensate for air density changes. As a result, the Keihin must be constantly adjusted, like other carburetors, for large changes in ambient air density conditions. Internal venting and float bowl pressurization allows the SmartCarb to provide proper top end fueling as demonstrated in the Dyno run above.

Another SmartCarb advantage comes from a proprietary and patented venturi shape. As the venturi is not round, it is shaped to most efficiently focus signal directly at the metering rod thus dramatically improving atomization. I can attest to a very linear power delivery and smooth, seamless throttle action. The Keihin by contrast has a conventional round, smooth bore which I have experienced  not to be as efficient.


However, SmartCarbs are extremely easy to adjust and tuning can be done externally by hand and without specialty tools. My Blog Post from 17 Mar 19 went into some detail on the tuning benefits and ease of tuning of these SmartCarb Flat-Slides. I, personally, have always found the Keihins challenging to get to a consistent tune and it appeared that I was always having to fettle with them under different race scenarios. I applaud those experts who have mastered the Keihin. However, in today’s world, I find that simplicity with superior performance to be a stronger, winning package.

Seen below is Corey Dyess, CEO for Technology Elevated and Bill Eley of team Italian Iron Classics comparing notes from our day at Evan Steel Performance where we were doing our Dyno work on both of our vintage and modern Ducati engines using our SmartCarb flat-slides. Come and experience the pinnacle of carburetor technology at Italian Iron Classics, LLC

Nearing completion of our Ducati TT 1 for the Road & Track!! Our plan is to bring it along as well to Laguna Seca for the World Superbike July 2019 races as a vendor. Hope to see you all at our Italian Iron Classics vendor booth!!

For more information, feel free to e-mail me at Italianiron@msn.com or go to the Italianiron.com website to find other Blog Posts written on our Smart Carb analysis and applications on our vintage and modern Ducati twin engines. 

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  • A couple of questions:
    1- How do you adapt these to the two-cable system found on most street bikes?
    2- How does the Smartcarb handle the angle it’s mounted at in some Ducati applications (I’m thinking the mid-90’s Supersports and others) where the carbs are both tilted back towards the intake valve end of the carb by what looks to be about 20 degrees?

    Adrien Murphy on

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