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Electronic Shifting - What's the Point?

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Electronic Shifting - What's the Point?

Old 10-21-20, 02:07 PM
  #101  
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The front derailleur trim sounds nice. But I will not spend the money on electronic shifting any time soon. My reasons:

1. The price is outrageous for the small benefit received. I realize that a lot of cycling components are like this, however. And I judge no one else for how they allocate their cycling dollars.

2. I am a former shop mechanic, and donít really have an issue with derailleur adjustment. I make sure itís set up correctly the first time, and then maybe a quarter turn of a barrel adjuster every time cable slack becomes an issue. I have an 18-year-old bike that has never gone out of adjustment, other than minor cable slackening.

3. I have never had a shift cable snap in the newer-style ďbriftersĒ, with cable routing under the tape. But I have only had two bikes with this style of shift lever (105 5800 and Ultegra R8000). Perhaps the problem has been solved. Or maybe I just jinxed myself!

4. Adding a low voltage DC electrical system is another layer of complexity that I donít want to deal with as a home mechanic. And I can see component obsolescence being a larger issue over the long haul.
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Old 10-21-20, 03:00 PM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by HarborBandS View Post

4. Adding a low voltage DC electrical system is another layer of complexity that I donít want to deal with as a home mechanic. And I can see component obsolescence being a larger issue over the long haul.
With Di2, the levers are just signal senders. They donít house any of the brains. Because of this, 10speed shifters are compatible with 11speed. So to move to 11 speed would require you to purchase a derailleur front and rear, chain and cassette.
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Old 10-21-20, 03:20 PM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by HarborBandS View Post
4. Adding a low voltage DC electrical system is another layer of complexity that I donít want to deal with as a home mechanic. And I can see component obsolescence being a larger issue over the long haul.
Sram eTap is wireless, so no complexity.
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Old 10-21-20, 03:26 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by Amt0571 View Post
We can talk about Shimano if you want, who have been unable to fix their brifters that get frayed cables in a couple of thousand miles.
For some reason, Shimano opted to preserve backwards compatibility of road derailer pull from 6s through to 10s, and this means the small diameter of the cable spool in the shifter causes fatigue.
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Old 10-21-20, 03:57 PM
  #105  
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Originally Posted by Amt0571 View Post
When a battery is old, it can happen than it runs from apparently full to flat in a few hours instead of 1000 miles or whatever the Di2 battery lasts. Even if you just charged it. Batteries degrade over time.

But that's not the only possible failure. Electrical contacts, when they age, they tend to fail. Anyone who has messed up with old computers has surely encountered issues when a computer doesn't detect a RAM module or a graphics card, and you remove it, mount it again and it works... for a few days / weeks.

Then there's the motors, which will wear down with time / vibration, and you can't see to inspect their current state. Who knows where they're going to fail?

Maybe you replace your bakes on a yearly basis and don't care about that. I tend to keep my bikes for at least 10 years, and I definitely wouldn't like having to call someone to pick me up because a derailleur has gone haywire in the middle of nowhere and I can't climb with whatever gear it has decided to stick to.

I mostly ride alone and like being self-sufficient. I can't account for everything, but I'd like not to introduce additional things that can go irreparably wrong in my rides. It's extremely strange for a mechanical derailleur or shifter to break catastrophically unless you fall and hit them with something.
Also an asteroid could fall out of the sky onto your shifter and kill you. Missed that one.
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Old 10-21-20, 03:58 PM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
Sram eTap is wireless, so no complexity.
I hear rumors of a new wireless 12-speed Dura Ace. So maybe Iíll go electronic once this trickles down to Ultegra and prices go down considerably.
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Old 10-21-20, 04:00 PM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Also an asteroid could fall out of the sky onto your shifter and kill you. Missed that one.
Yes. The probability of an asteroid hitting the shifter is the same as the probability of the shifter malfunctioning.

Didn't account for that. Sorry.
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Old 10-21-20, 04:05 PM
  #108  
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Originally Posted by HarborBandS View Post
I hear rumors of a new wireless 12-speed Dura Ace. So maybe Iíll go electronic once this trickles down to Ultegra and prices go down considerably.
By then there will be something new.
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Old 10-21-20, 04:48 PM
  #109  
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I don't have electronic shifting, but the method for shifting with the etap seems like a real innovation to me.
SRAM eTap: Press the right button for a harder gear, the left button for an easier gear, and both for a front shift.
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Old 10-21-20, 05:02 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by unionmade View Post
I don't have electronic shifting, but the method for shifting with the etap seems like a real innovation to me.
SRAM eTap: Press the right button for a harder gear, the left button for an easier gear, and both for a front shift.
So does pressing both make it easier or harder?
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Old 10-21-20, 05:04 PM
  #111  
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Originally Posted by unionmade View Post
I don't have electronic shifting, but the method for shifting with the etap seems like a real innovation to me.
SRAM eTap: Press the right button for a harder gear, the left button for an easier gear, and both for a front shift.
Reminds me of all the folks who can't see anything wrong with the indicator being on the wrong side in a car (we get this in RHD countries).

I'd prefer to have control of the bike with one hand, and I'm not disabled. Di2 gives you almost any option you like out of the box; Etap you only get blips, as an option.
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Old 10-21-20, 05:07 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
I can mod SRAM/Avid hydraulic brakes to allow them to function properly, why not SRAM?
Care to share, or is that secret sauce?
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Old 10-21-20, 05:11 PM
  #113  
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
By then there will be something new.
Personally, Iím going to wait for the Shimano ĎReal Brainí neural implant that will shift whenever you think about it
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Old 10-21-20, 05:21 PM
  #114  
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I'm curious what kind of experience the people who are so down on electronic shifting have with it.
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Old 10-21-20, 05:24 PM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by billridesbikes View Post
Personally, Iím going to wait for the Shimano ĎReal Brainí neural implant that will shift whenever you think about it
You waited almost 10 years too long. It's in the helmet not an implant though.

Shift gears on Toyota's bike with your mind alone
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Old 10-21-20, 05:29 PM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I'm curious what kind of experience the people who are so down on electronic shifting have with it.
Prolly the same amount as those that are so down on tubeless, disc brakes, etc.
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Old 10-21-20, 06:19 PM
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It makes a lot of sense for TT bikes in my opinion. I'm about to upgrade my TT bike to etap aero. I have two road bikes that I don't plan on switching from mechanical, not worth the cost to me.
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Old 10-21-20, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
It makes a lot of sense for TT bikes in my opinion. I'm about to upgrade my TT bike to etap aero. I have two road bikes that I don't plan on switching from mechanical, not worth the cost to me.
It was a legit gamechanger for me on TT - without being able to shift from the brake levers I was never able to get comfortable enough to learn how to really ride one.
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Old 10-21-20, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
not worth the cost to me.
But how about your next road bike?
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Old 10-21-20, 06:55 PM
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Sure auto trim sounds great, but nothing new. Suntour had it in the early 80s with some of their downtube shifters. Trimming the front isnít inherently difficult or something thatís constantly needed so if thatís a major advantage Iíll save my $$
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Old 10-21-20, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Point View Post
Sure auto trim sounds great, but nothing new. Suntour had it in the early 80s with some of their downtube shifters. Trimming the front isnít inherently difficult or something thatís constantly needed so if thatís a major advantage Iíll save my $$
^ I found the Point.
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Old 10-21-20, 07:13 PM
  #122  
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I went with Di2 on my Domane and found that I really, really like it. I was also someone that wondered what the point was when it first came out, but I am also typically someone that lets the early adopters pay the price of the early editions and I just watch to see how it works and see if it will be around in the future. I have 6800 Mechanical on my Emonda ALR, but I would seriously consider running eTap AXS on it as I have no desire to alter the frame to run internal wires.
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Old 10-22-20, 08:02 AM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by Amt0571 View Post
SRAM had some problem with guides. As far as I know, other brakes are not affected. I can attest my hydraulic Rival brakes work well when it's hot.

We can talk about Shimano if you want, who have been unable to fix their brifters that get frayed cables in a couple of thousand miles.

I mean, nobody's perfect...
They could easily use a larger radius on the internal shift mechanism, which would reduce the strain on the end of the cable, but this would increase the effort required to shift, and make it shift like SRAM(crap).
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Old 10-22-20, 08:04 AM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
I've had a RD cable break (in the shifter) in less than 2,000 miles, and that was on latest-gen 105. Granted, I shift a lot, since it is pretty hilly around here.
Sure -

Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
...maybe some unlucky souls have experienced this, but it would be highly atypical.
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Old 10-22-20, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
But how about your next road bike?
I certainly wouldn't shy away from it if the price disparity was low for a similarly spec'd bike. My bikes are ancient by todays standards - 11sp, mechanical, rim brake, tubed tires. Something more modern with tubeless, disc and possibly electronic shifting does sound nice.

I had the chance to get one from our bike shop sponsor and buy it at cost EOY but I didn't want to commit to that level of racing and participation, so instead I went for a lower tier that involved free clothing and race reimbursement but no bike. With the pandemic and racing cancelled in SCNCA in March I wouldn't have had to fulfill those requirements, damn. Of course no one could have expected or wanted this.
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