/5 Electronic Shifting Hacks For Cyclists | Maintenance Monday

5 Electronic Shifting Hacks For Cyclists | Maintenance Monday

Video: 5 Electronic Shifting Hacks For Cyclists | Maintenance Monday


– Undoubtedly, one of the best things about electronic gear shifting on bikes is that it just works almost faultlessly, all the time. However, if you are lucky enough to have electronic gear shifting on your bike, are you actually getting the most out of it? Well, if you watch this video you will do because coming up we've got five very simple, very cool hacks for you. (rhythmic guitar music) Shimano Di2, SRAM eTap, and Campagnolo EPS all have additional amp-plus connectivity. And in Shimano's case actually, it's also got Bluetooth connectivity as well. What that means is you can actually pair up your shifters with something like a head unit, so your Wahoo or your Garmin.

And then in Shimano's case actually, you can also pair up your phone via their E-TUBE app, and also some third party devices like (mumbles). Why would you do this? Well, as a minimum you could set up a page on your device that has gear information, so they're telling you what gear you're in. Which for some people could be absolutely great. I'm not all that fussed about that, but for me the battery life indicator is a real boon. (rhythmic guitar music) Where as SRAM have gone down the functional simplicity route, so like Apple if you will. Shimano have gone down the customizable route, so I'm sticking with my crappy phone analogy, like the Android route. Now, personally I'm actually happy with the Shimano factory settings meaning which button controls which shift and indeed how fast it shifts. But all of that is customizable through that E-TUBE app that we just talked about.

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However, what I would definitely do is make use of these so called hidden buttons that you find on the top of the lever hood on the more recent editions of Dura Ace Di2 and on the latest Ultegra Di2. Now, you can set them up, so programme them to become additional shift buttons. Like maybe the right one could go down through the cassette and the left one can go up through the cassette which I did find surprisingly fun, actually, when I had it set up. But more likely I would get it set up so that I can scroll through screens on the Wahoo here. How good is that? You can scroll through screens without letting go of your lever hoods. (rhythmic guitar music) Slightly less exciting this one I will admit, but potentially more useful. Always disconnect your battery before you travel. With SRAM's eTAP, the derailleurs are constantly searching for a signal from your shifters anytime that the tiny little accelerometers housed in the derailleurs detect that the bike is moving.

It is a very simple and very effective system. However, when you're travelling with your bike it could mistake being on a plane or being in a car for pedalling and therefore, when you're on the way the derailleurs are constantly searching for that signal again, meaning that you arrive at your destination with slightly drained batteries. The solution is incredibly simple. Just pop off the battery before you travel. Now, Shimano Di2 is slightly different in that it's not wireless, but it's still a really good idea to disconnect the battery before you travel because your bike whether packed in a bag or in the back of a car it can get pressed against something. And then your shifter could get depressed for the whole journey in fact. Therefore, you arrive at your destination with a drained battery. (rhythmic guitar music) With mechanical shifting at this point in the video, I may be starting to get my hands dirty, especially considering the state of last year's drivetrain.

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But the beauty of electronic gears is that actually you can micro-adjust on the fly. Now, I don't know why you'd necessarily wanna do that in normal riding conditions, but if you do get a new back wheel or you connect your bike up to a direct drive turbo trainer, you may well find that actually the gears aren't indexed correctly on your new cassette. To remedy that with SRAM eTAP, you will find a little function button on the inside of each shifter. Now you press and hold that in, and then each time you shift with the lever, instead of getting a full shift the derailleur will only move nought .25 millimetres. So effectively like a quarter turn of a barrel adjuster. Now, you can actually hear when the gears are perfectly indexed because your drivetrain will go quiet instead of making that slight rubbing noise.

With Shimano Di2 however, (bell rings) you have to press the button on the junction box. Press and hold it for two seconds and then it will put it into micro-adjustment, which is effectively what you've just been doing on SRAM. So instead of getting a full gear shift, you'll just get a tiny one allowing you to adjust the trim of the rear derailleur. Then to get out of micro-adjust mode, that's a free wheel and a half isn't it? Simply press the junction box again. (rhythmic guitar music) Sticking with Di2 for a minute. While little wires admittedly don't look as clean as no wires at all we can using a neat little trick, make them disappear almost completely using this. Heatshrink, you can get it from just about any kind of electrical shop. And what you will do with it is you can effectively bind your Di2 cable to your brake cable, in this case your brake hose.

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Then you put a bit of heat on it, so a heat gun or a lighter or something, very carefully given that your next to your important parts. And then it will shrink-wrap the two together. And look super, super clean. If you've got any electronic shifting hacks, then do make sure you put them in the comments section down below. Share the hack love, we would love to read about them for a start. And let's face it, we can get another video going potentially with them as well. Do make sure you subscribe to GCN before leaving this video. To do so just click on the globe. And if you have some more content for mechanical gear shift users out there then let's give ourselves a big up here because mechanical shifting is still great. If you want to see a video about gear setup hacks then click just down there. And if you're in the mood for hacks generally, what about roadside maintenance hacks? We've got five crackers just down there..