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  1. #1
    JYP
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    Shimano's new ultra high-end all-electric gear shifters?


  2. #2
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    Are they serious about that price?!!

  3. #3
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    They've been in the works for a while, and look a whole lot more "finished" now than ther early versions. At least one rider in this past winter's Tour of California was sporting a set.

    Face it, they're going to cost a whole lot now, they'll get cheaper and begin to trickle down through the component groups, and they're going to make the jump to mountain bikes. Riders are going to complain about batteries and repairability, but Shimano nailed one key element from the start: The weight is comparable to a traditional Dura Ace setup (70g weight penalty).

    What's cool is that the front derailleur auto-trims based on what cog is selected on the cassette, and remote buttons are a possibility for bar ends or alternate hand positions. I'm looking forward to seeing how this matures with use.
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  5. #5
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    Hmmm... at what point does the battery become a concern?

    I don't necessarily see it as a problem in this application, other than somebody might argue it's an unfair advantage. But the moment you begin using stored energy in combination with a drivetrain / transmission, you do introduce an aspect that the ruling bodies may want to regulate.

    As a reader commented in the Wired article, a dynamo option might be preferable by eliminating this concern. As far as joe-rider out on the street or trail, just one more battery to change (and carry as a spare).
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  6. #6
    ride like you stole it
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    I don't know about this, I have never been a fan of drive by wire set-ups. I realize that this is a really cool technology but I just like having a direct connection to my drivetrain.
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  7. #7
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    What happens when the batteries die on you on an epic ride? Having to worry about batteries being recharged is more of a hassle then adjusting my shifting every 1-2 years. They've really over engineered themselves on this one.

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    Man, that's crazy, a bike with a battery. Freaking expensive too. They should put an alternator in the cranks to charge the battery and some footrests on the top tube so you can rest your feet while you're in cruise control!

    I wonder if it interferes with wirless computers. Probably.

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    Re: the stored energy aspect, I have wondered about that myself when these types of systems have appeared in the past. Didn't Shimano try a compressed-air fired rear dérailleur for DH biles a while back? It didn't seem to survive, but was that because of the rules or market acceptance?

    It does not look like the road racing rules bodies have expressed any real concern about this, and as they go, so goes the road bike.

    What I thought was interesting was that they would allow stored energy (granted, a trivial amount but still...) but were selectively disallowing certain aspects of road bike design. It was OK to have aero parts on the bike if they were structural, but not aero cowlings and covers fit to an underlying structure. And the frame has to have a seat tube even though with CF materials the seat tube could be eliminated (Kestrel did it with one of their frames). Originally that rule was probably to keep steel builders competitive but it looked to me that everybody in the TdF was riding carbon (even Cannondale?) so what's the point any more.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by AC/BC
    What happens when the batteries die on you on an epic ride? Having to worry about batteries being recharged is more of a hassle then adjusting my shifting every 1-2 years. They've really over engineered themselves on this one.
    I understand reliability is one of the "fears" keeping them in the R&D relm. If the system fails, you have a single speed. You can change/charge batteries every race, but if the "system fails" or perhaps others can control your shifters (no one would do that). I see them getting things ironed out as they are lighter and faster shifting. It is only a matter of time and you will see them on production bikes. Look at carbon fiber stuff, it is cropping up in lower end bikes where a few years ago is was black magic voodoo stuff.
    thx, Phred
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  11. #11
    Nightriding rules SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by phred
    I understand reliability is one of the "fears" keeping them in the R&D relm. If the system fails, you have a single speed. You can change/charge batteries every race, but if the "system fails" or perhaps others can control your shifters (no one would do that). I see them getting things ironed out as they are lighter and faster shifting. It is only a matter of time and you will see them on production bikes. Look at carbon fiber stuff, it is cropping up in lower end bikes where a few years ago is was black magic voodoo stuff.

    well..it's supposed to go sale on Jan 2009...so we'll know soon enough...

  12. #12
    wyrd bið ful ãræd
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    kudos to shimano for the r&d ...

    i ever rode on my grandfather's old bike which came with an alternator/dynamo which is mounted on the rearseat stay which when needed, you just flick it and the contact point then rests on the tyres and as you pedal you have light!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by LowLow
    I wonder if it interferes with wirless computers. Probably.
    Why would it interfere with a wireless computer? The sort of frequencies you'd use to operate a servo motor for an application this coarse is so pedestrian, you can't even compare it to wireless applications. Di2 does go wireless, but only when downloading data to a PC.

  14. #14
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    I want wireless on the bike. I want to be able to pop on new deraillers and shifters without having to run cable. That'd be awesome.Plus, you'd get some weight savings from not having the wire.

    Maybe not wireless brakes though.

  15. #15
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    Some good info here

    http://www.bikeradar.com/news/articl...groupset-17847

    The idea of the gears electronically realigning themselves is interesting

    However.. id have thought that these types of systems would be much more useful on an mtb ...where you have weird cable routing and the cables are much more suseptable to damage and grime!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karve
    ...id have thought that these types of systems would be much more useful on an mtb ...where you have weird cable routing and the cables are much more suseptable to damage and grime!
    I would bet beer money that we'll see it on an XTR-level group next, as soon as it cuts its teeth with the road crew.

    It seems to me that mountain bikers would be more open to this technology than roadies, but perhaps for a product such as this, introducing it on a road bike eliminates many dirt / shock / abuse variables.
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  17. #17
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    Didn't mavic have some type of system some years ago?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    Didn't mavic have some type of system some years ago?

    yeah... Zap it was called IIRC...but it was only the RD...apparently the FD is the biggest challenge according to Shimano...

  19. #19
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    I think it was something-tronic, like mavic-tronic, or mectronic. I remember first seeing it in a 99-00 Marin catalog with their really exotic and flashy paint wearing road bikes. Pure lust from that catalog, if I may say so.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    I think it was something-tronic, like mavic-tronic, or mectronic. I remember first seeing it in a 99-00 Marin catalog with their really exotic and flashy paint wearing road bikes. Pure lust from that catalog, if I may say so.
    well...anyhow.. here's some info on Zap http://www.bikepro.com/products/rear...zap_rrder.html


  21. #21
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    Ahhh, I'm remembering that, too. A quick search confirmed that it is not the one I'm talking about, but a nice piece of history, nonetheless.

    The Zapp was wired. The group that came after was wireless and used the more familiar black with yellow scheme we know of the current Mavic. I'm pretty sure now it was Mec-Tronic.

    Found it: MEKTRONIC:
    (still looking for a pic of the RD)


    Edit 2:
    Pic from the manual:


  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by greyhorse
    Why would it interfere with a wireless computer? The sort of frequencies you'd use to operate a servo motor for an application this coarse is so pedestrian, you can't even compare it to wireless applications. Di2 does go wireless, but only when downloading data to a PC.
    The government gives the public a set of frequencies to do with as they please. You can't just make one up. So if its modern its more than likely going to be either 2.4MHz or 5.8MHz. The same used for wifi and bluetooth and home cordless phones and model cars, etc...

    I suppose this only counts if the shifter is also wireless.

  23. #23
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    Whatever frequencies the are running, they have undoubtedly taken this in to account in their design. They have to deal with having the system work flawless in a pack of 200 other riders who all might be using similar gear. And they need to have built in enough security to keep some nutjob from hacking the race. Wanna really mess things up, just drop Cavendish into a 39-23 right as he's getting wound up and watch the fun...
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dad Man Walking
    Whatever frequencies the are running, they have undoubtedly taken this in to account in their design. They have to deal with having the system work flawless in a pack of 200 other riders who all might be using similar gear. And they need to have built in enough security to keep some nutjob from hacking the race. Wanna really mess things up, just drop Cavendish into a 39-23 right as he's getting wound up and watch the fun...
    It's wired.
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  25. #25
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    WANT!!

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