What are the advantages of electronic gears?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
Marin
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by Marin

wheelbuilder wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:32 pm
Try to picture this scenario........I am approaching a red light intersection. I am holding the bars with my left hand as I reduce speed with my front brake. Simultaneously I am grabbing my bottle with my right hand. As I am drinking with right hand, and applying front brake with left hand, I am also DOWNSHIFTING at the same time with my left ring finger, in preparation for acceleration from light once it turns green.
I'm trying really hard to picture this scenario.

So you are drinking with your right hand while you prepare for acceleration with your left finger, right? :shock:

You must be doing a different kind of cycling than I do :D :D :D

TLN
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Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2017 4:50 pm

by TLN

Well, technically, that's possible. He's braking and downshifting with one hand, and drinking with another.
What if you downshifting with right hand, braking with rear wheel (Omg, I know) and holding bottle in left hand? That way, if light turns green, I can start accelerating and shifting and keep drinking till I cross the intersection. On mech shifter.

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wheelbuilder
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by wheelbuilder

TLN wrote:
Fri Feb 16, 2018 9:37 pm
Well, technically, that's possible. He's braking and downshifting with one hand, and drinking with another.
What if you downshifting with right hand, braking with rear wheel (Omg, I know) and holding bottle in left hand? That way, if light turns green, I can start accelerating and shifting and keep drinking till I cross the intersection. On mech shifter.
Very good! I like bike handling skills, and I like those that utilize them! The point I didn't emphasize enough though, is the ability to perform perfect shifts with a ring finger or pinky. Hard to do on mechanical.

PyotrGhimme
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:11 am

by PyotrGhimme

IMO, the best advantage of electronic shifting is that it requires almost no effort or muscular-load to shift up and down. In other words... It will be really useful in the case you are dead tired while riding 300k bloody tiring course and shifting front gears feels tremendously painful. Plus, in such harsh environment, electronic make it possible for you to be less careful in shifting than mechanical system and lets you concentrate on road debris or port holes coming

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IrrelevantD
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by IrrelevantD

wheelbuilder wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 3:29 am
Very good! I like bike handling skills, and I like those that utilize them! The point I didn't emphasize enough though, is the ability to perform perfect shifts with a ring finger or pinky. Hard to do on mechanical.
I can accomplish this by utilizing homemade sprint shifters 1/2 way down the drops. Actually, I have mine situated to be able to shift with my thumb with my fingers hovering over the brake levers, but I can hit it with my ring finger if need be.
* There is a 70% chance that what you have just read has a peppering of cynicism or sarcasm and generally should not be taken seriously.
I'll leave it up to you to figure out the other 30%. If you are in any way offended, that's on you.

avispa
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Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 2:36 am

by avispa

Well, well... After reading the responses on this conversation, I beleive we should have called it: what are the disadvantages of mechanical gears?
Now, after seening this! I certainly will never go to Shimano unless I absolutelly, positivelly have to!
pdlpsher1 wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:04 am
IrrelevantD wrote:
Tue Feb 13, 2018 7:38 pm
fromtrektocolnago wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:07 pm
was on a trip with support. one of the members was on a new bike with di2. a connector got loose and nobody could figure it out for several hours. you can laugh at this but this stuff happens on electronic more than it does on mechanical
Well, I've had more shift cables fray inside the shifter than I've had e-tube cables come lose. Not even sure how that would happen if it was properly plugged in. I'm guessing whomever did the assembly didn't push in the connector until it snapped in place. This is the first time I've heard of an e-tube cable coming lose, but I hear about snapped/stretched/frayed cable issues, or in general issues with mechanical shifting all the time. Just browse through some of the mechanics forums.
The issue isn't because a cable isn't securely plugged in, but rather not leaving a bit of excess cable at the shift levers. If you have the cables too short, and you hit a big pothole, the slight flexing of the handlebar/shift lever will pull out the connector. I had this happen to me on a ride. Shimano's installation manual made a strong point to leave some excess wire. I bet 99% of the Di2 bikes were built not following this specific instruction.

Incorrect way

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Correct way

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sled driver
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Joined: Thu Jan 20, 2005 1:05 am
Location: Seattle, Washington

by sled driver

One point I didn’t see emphasized is the velocity & force you exert with mechanical shifting system varies with experience & conditions. Di2 shifts with the same force & speed. i.e. consistent shifts, everytime.

Di2 front derailleur auto trims as you work your way up/down the cassette. Plus the auto double shift the front derailleur does when you go from the big ring to the small ring. No more dropped chains.

Di2 offers multiple shifting locations & gear position can be displayed on your computer.

The game changer is Synchro shift. Shifting from the big to small ring (or vice versa) the rear derailleur shifts 1-2 cogs to lessen the big jump in cadence.

The biggest bitch people come up with is having to recharge the battery every 2- 6 months. Basically every 1,000 to 1,500 miles.

Juction A has a light that tells you the state of the charge. Takes 2 seconds to check before you head out. Takes less than 90 minutes to fully recharge a dead battery

Remember when your old nokia flip phone could hold a charge for 2 weeks? You replaced it with a iPhone that you have to charge 1-2 times a day.
2018 BMC Teammachine SLR01 DISC, R9170 Di2, Dura Ace R9170-C40-TL
2017 BMC R01 RoadMachine, R9170 Di2, Reynolds Attack
2015 GT Grade, Ultegra Di2, Reynolds ATR
2010 S Works Epic, Sram XX1, Carbon Roval Control SL

Boshk
Posts: 264
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2017 2:59 am

by Boshk

sled driver wrote:
Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:02 pm
........

The biggest bitch people come up with is having to recharge the battery every 2- 6 months. Basically every 1,000 to 1,500.....

Remember when your old nokia flip phone could hold a charge for 2 weeks? You replaced it with a iPhone that you have to charge 1-2 times a day.
This is brilliant :up:

Remember dial up 56k?
Colnago C60

Geoff
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by Geoff

I am a luddite, too. For perspective, I personally believe that the evolution of the racebike ended when Columbus SL was replaced by SLX and Campagnolo replaced Super Record with C Record (and I was just about the last guy to switch from toeclips to Look - and I only did that because I won a set of Look shoes and pedals). Having said that, electric shifting is so superior in so many situations, it is almost the same as cheating.

When it is 6 degrees and your wet fingers are falling-off in your gloves at the bottom of the descent section of your interval course and you need to double-shift into 12%, electronic shifting will never miss. Ever. In 'cross, those stepper motors will bust-through absolutely anything. When you need a fast, precise shift to follow a move, nothing beats electric. It is really that amazing in a high-stress situation. I am teaching my son on 'manual' shifters, as I believe that it is an important skill to learn how to do correctly. When my boy is racing, though, it will be on electric.

Are there disadvantages? Sure. Can you run-out of battery? Yup. Can you forget that you are on Record, not Di2 and mess-up a shift. Yup. But that's my own fault for screwing-up that which cannot be screwed-up. Maybe I should just stick with mechanical groupsets because I'm too stupid for electric!

pdlpsher1
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Location: CO

by pdlpsher1

I read today that Tom Dumoulin lost his TT race due to a Di2 failure? During the recon ride the RD went into the crash mode. The team mechanic replaced the RD however there wasn't enough time to truly test it. During the race the RD conked out again and Dumoulin had to change bikes. Later it the team mechanic found the likely causely cause to be the shifters. I've never seen a shifter fail. I wonder what exactly happened. Too bad the problem happened during a key race. I really like my Di2 but I would like to find out what lead to the breakdowns....

http://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/lates ... cal-370522

Geoff
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by Geoff

Ahh, then there's that problem! :D

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Calnago
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by Calnago

It’s just a race
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Marin
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by Marin

Did you see Naesen ride up Muur van Gerhardsbergen in a really long gear? Wonder what problem he had

Kazyole
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by Kazyole

pdlpsher1 wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 6:20 pm
I read today that Tom Dumoulin lost his TT race due to a Di2 failure? During the recon ride the RD went into the crash mode. The team mechanic replaced the RD however there wasn't enough time to truly test it. During the race the RD conked out again and Dumoulin had to change bikes. Later it the team mechanic found the likely causely cause to be the shifters. I've never seen a shifter fail. I wonder what exactly happened. Too bad the problem happened during a key race. I really like my Di2 but I would like to find out what lead to the breakdowns....

http://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/lates ... cal-370522
Interesting. I wonder what kind of failure would trigger crash mode like that. I'd always sort of assumed that pro bikes would have that feature disabled somehow.

At the same time, hard to see this as an argument against electronic groupsets. Mechanical gears are plenty capable of going wrong as well.

For me, I was ideologically opposed to Di2 for a long time. I insisted that the beauty of a bicycle was that it was mechanical, and that the elegantly designed system relied solely only on tension and clever engineering. That there was something conceptually wrong about having to charge a bike. Then I tried a bike with Di2. I bought an upgrade kit the next week. Perfect, instant shifts every time, no dropped chains, 0 cable stretch, 0 maintenance, auto-trimming, shifting the big ring under power, etc. Battery life is so good that it's almost impossible to run out. At the time I made the switch there was a weight penalty. Now there's a weight penalty for staying mechanical. I don't think it really makes me any faster. Maybe only in the absolute most marginal sense. Quicker shifts up to the big ring and shifting under power you could argue are infintessimal performance upgrades. And the DA 9150 groupset being 46g lighter than DA 9100 might be worth a couple of seconds on a 10km climb.

But if I'm putting in thousands of miles per year in the saddle, it's a quality of life upgrade that's hard to overstate. I'll personally never go back. For me, mechanical dura ace is to Di2 today what 105 was to Dura Ace 5-10 years ago.

dmulligan
Posts: 313
Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2014 6:16 pm

by dmulligan

@pdlpsher1 Thank you for those pictures. I'm going tomorrow install a used ui2 group next week!

@fromtrektocolnago I wonder if a D-Fly module and the e-tube app would have made short work of that loose cable situation. I haven't used it yet but I believe it will tell you which modules are talking or not.

OP ride all the options and get what ever makes you happiest and is still in your budget.

On the subject of Shimano shifters causing cables to fray I wonder if it has anything to do with how one cleans and/or lubes said shifters and area. I've had three failures or near failures and two of those were on an older shifter with no bend.

D

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