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Di2 owners: Checking battery percentage and charge?

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Di2 owners: Checking battery percentage and charge?

Old 04-22-21, 11:07 PM
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Ataylor
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Di2 owners: Checking battery percentage and charge?

Outside of having the EW-WU111 wireless unit (which I don't want), is there any way to check the exact battery percentage? I know you can gauge the level by checking the color on the junction box (i.e. solid green for full, etc), but is there a way to know the actual percentage number through the program or through some other means?

Also, dumb question, but when it's being charged, there's an orange light indicating that it's being charged. Once that light turns off, I assume that means that it's fully charged, correct? It's not suppose to turn green or flash or anything like that?
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Old 04-23-21, 12:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Outside of having the EW-WU111 wireless unit (which I don't want), is there any way to check the exact battery percentage? I know you can gauge the level by checking the color on the junction box (i.e. solid green for full, etc), but is there a way to know the actual percentage number through the program or through some other means?
No. You can get a better approximation by using the eTube software on a computer (connecting the bike using the charger that came with it, to the battery if you retrofitted Di2). The wireless unit is quite convenient in this regard. Really.

Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Also, dumb question, but when it's being charged, there's an orange light indicating that it's being charged. Once that light turns off, I assume that means that it's fully charged, correct? It's not suppose to turn green or flash or anything like that?
Yes.
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Old 04-23-21, 02:26 AM
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Thank you, sir. I agree that it's more convenient than setting it up on your computer, but I think it's a little less convenient than simply and quickly pressing the shifter for a second or two to get a general gauge of the battery life. It would definitely scratch a psychological itch for me to know the exact number, but I really don't need to know. Even the program read-out sounds like it'll be more than I actually need.

Anyway, thanks again for your help and for answering both questions. I appreciate it.
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Old 04-23-21, 03:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Thank you, sir. I agree that it's more convenient than setting it up on your computer, but I think it's a little less convenient than simply and quickly pressing the shifter for a second or two to get a general gauge of the battery life. It would definitely scratch a psychological itch for me to know the exact number, but I really don't need to know. Even the program read-out sounds like it'll be more than I actually need.
Happy to help.

May I suggest that a wireless unit is useful for a whole lot more than just giving you a battery percentage in a data field on your cycling computer (on Garmins it displays in 10% increments until 20%, then it goes to 5%). With the BT module added, you can use the eTube app on your phone to adjust (program) the shifting, and it will also allow you to control certain cycle computers (Wahoo and Garmin for sure) if you have the Di2 integration buttons on your shifters (DA R9100, Ultegra R8000, GRX 800).
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Old 04-23-21, 04:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Badger6 View Post
Happy to help.

May I suggest that a wireless unit is useful for a whole lot more than just giving you a battery percentage in a data field on your cycling computer (on Garmins it displays in 10% increments until 20%, then it goes to 5%). With the BT module added, you can use the eTube app on your phone to adjust (program) the shifting, and it will also allow you to control certain cycle computers (Wahoo and Garmin for sure) if you have the Di2 integration buttons on your shifters (DA R9100, Ultegra R8000, GRX 800).
Oh, believe me, I know. I just didn't want to bog you down with all that information. I've been almost forcing myself to find a reason to buy the thing this past week or so, but I couldn't find a single reason. Which is good, since I realized that my Edge 130 Plus isn't even compatible.

I mean I can see how it could be useful for some riders out there - I can totally understand how some would prefer not needing to connect it to their computer, too - but for me, it seems like an easy pass. Battery? Got the shifters. Firmware updates? PC. Setting the shifters, which I'll only do one time? PC. Flipping through the Garmin using the buttons? Even if it was compatible, I'd much rather use the integrated buttons on top for shifting than anything else, since everything I need on the Garmin is on the first screen. Plus, I don't know if any of this is true, but I've heard of battery drainage issues and systems "bricking" as a result of using the module. Could be one-off events, I don't know, but that definitely didn't push me towards making a purchase.

That said, for an average cyclist like myself, I think it needs an "it" factor, but it doesn't seem to have that. It has the ease of use for certain functions going for it, which is nice, but the options aren't that special, IMO. I have no idea what it would take for me to jump on board, but as it currently stands, I think it's a definite no-go for me.
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Old 04-23-21, 05:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Thank you, sir. I agree that it's more convenient than setting it up on your computer, but I think it's a little less convenient than simply and quickly pressing the shifter for a second or two to get a general gauge of the battery life
You can do this. On the right (rear) shifter, press both levers simultaneously, just briefly. On your junction box, you will see one of the following: steady green light, which means 50%+ charge; flashing green light, which means 25% to 50% charge; solid red light, which means under 25% charge, flashing red light, which means 5% or less charge remaining.

https://bettershifting.com/frequentl...-charge-level/


PS: Maybe I misread your original post, and you already know the above technique, and you are looking for something more precise? If so, I'll just mention that, according to Shimano, even the bt readout on a cycle computer is not very accurate.

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Old 04-23-21, 05:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Badger6 View Post
Happy to help.

May I suggest that a wireless unit is useful for a whole lot more than just giving you a battery percentage in a data field on your cycling computer (on Garmins it displays in 10% increments until 20%, then it goes to 5%). With the BT module added, you can use the eTube app on your phone to adjust (program) the shifting, and it will also allow you to control certain cycle computers (Wahoo and Garmin for sure) if you have the Di2 integration buttons on your shifters (DA R9100, Ultegra R8000, GRX 800).
I did not realize how much I would appreciate controlling my Garmin from the hoods. When I use the Garmin on a non-Di2 bike, I always mash the top of the hood a few times before I remember I have to reach over to the computer to scroll. Not a huge deal, but one of those minor conveniences you really appreciate.
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Old 04-23-21, 06:46 AM
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Not the exact percentage, but the light color on the control unit will indicate a range of battery left. Unless you really want it, you can't really run out of charge. I charge mine every 2000kms...
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Old 04-23-21, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
Unless you really want it, you can't really run out of charge.
I've done it twice...because I didn't learn the first time.
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Old 04-23-21, 09:48 AM
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For me having the current gear ratio (50-14, 34-22 etc.) displayed in my head unit would be enough reason to have the D-Fly unit. It, along with my heart rate are the two fields that I have displayed on every page on my Garmin 830.
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Old 04-23-21, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
Not the exact percentage, but the light color on the control unit will indicate a range of battery left. Unless you really want it, you can't really run out of charge. I charge mine every 2000kms...
I agree. Charge it the 1st of every month or on payday, it doesnít really matter as long as it is consistent. I never check my battery consumption because I am charging well before the battery is empty.
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Old 04-23-21, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
PS: Maybe I misread your original post, and you already know the above technique, and you are looking for something more precise? If so, I'll just mention that, according to Shimano, even the bt readout on a cycle computer is not very accurate.
Yea', that's what I meant. Wanted something more precise. That's interesting what Shimano said, though. Thanks for sharing that.
Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
Not the exact percentage, but the light color on the control unit will indicate a range of battery left. Unless you really want it, you can't really run out of charge. I charge mine every 2000kms...
There just seems to be so much talk of battery issues with the Di2 system, that knowing the exact number (if it was actually accurate) would have given me a bit of extra comfort, I suppose. Some people say they charge it twice a year, while others complain about the battery draining in a day or two or, at times, even within hours. I wouldn't be surprised if these issues occur with only a small handful of Di2 owners, but there did seem to be some degree of a consistent pattern forming from having researched the topic, which is what led to look into this whole wireless thing.
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Old 04-23-21, 01:45 PM
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Oh, and for the record, in case I haven't been clear, I think it's a really neat tool for those who actually have use for it. I'm not dismissing the unit itself at all. I just don't feel as though it has anything to offer me, personally. I can see how many of the options would add up for the "right" people. Scrolling through your computer or checking your gear ratios, etc, can mean a lot to serious riders (which most definitely is not me), but alas, until I get to a point where these things matter, I personally don't see a point in buying it. That's all I was saying.
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Old 04-23-21, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Yea', that's what I meant. Wanted something more precise. That's interesting what Shimano said, though. Thanks for sharing that.


There just seems to be so much talk of battery issues with the Di2 system, that knowing the exact number (if it was actually accurate) would have given me a bit of extra comfort, I suppose. Some people say they charge it twice a year, while others complain about the battery draining in a day or two or, at times, even within hours. I wouldn't be surprised if these issues occur with only a small handful of Di2 owners, but there did seem to be some degree of a consistent pattern forming from having researched the topic, which is what led to look into this whole wireless thing.
Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Oh, and for the record, in case I haven't been clear, I think it's a really neat tool for those who actually have use for it. I'm not dismissing the unit itself at all. I just don't feel as though it has anything to offer me, personally. I can see how many of the options would add up for the "right" people. Scrolling through your computer or checking your gear ratios, etc, can mean a lot to serious riders (which most definitely is not me), but alas, until I get to a point where these things matter, I personally don't see a point in buying it. That's all I was saying.
FWIW, I ride with many people who use Di2 - none of them have experienced the battery issues that appear in some online complaints. I know that problems happen; I have never seen it. I've had my Di2 bike since November. I ride a fair amount - roughly 1000-1300km each month. I try to charge around the first of every month, though I'll top it off if I'm going to travel or, like tomorrow, I have a big ride planned and don't want to take any chances. I do live in a fairly flat area so I'm not shifting the FD very often, but I've never run out of battery. As the system gets older, I don't expect it to hold a charge as well. That said, if you just get in the habit of charging it the first of every month, you should be good (assuming the system is new).
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Old 04-23-21, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Badger6 View Post
I've done it twice...because I didn't learn the first time.
Having to go back home with a single speed is usually painful enough to not forget it after
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Old 04-24-21, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by ericcox View Post
FWIW, I ride with many people who use Di2 - none of them have experienced the battery issues that appear in some online complaints. I know that problems happen; I have never seen it. I've had my Di2 bike since November. I ride a fair amount - roughly 1000-1300km each month. I try to charge around the first of every month, though I'll top it off if I'm going to travel or, like tomorrow, I have a big ride planned and don't want to take any chances. I do live in a fairly flat area so I'm not shifting the FD very often, but I've never run out of battery. As the system gets older, I don't expect it to hold a charge as well. That said, if you just get in the habit of charging it the first of every month, you should be good (assuming the system is new).
That's great to hear. Sometimes it's easy to forget that there's way more people not complaining, sitting in the background enjoying their product, than there is people complaining about it.

But yea', I'll definitely follow suit and charge every month. Thanks for the advice.
Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
Having to go back home with a single speed is usually painful enough to not forget it after
Oh, man, that sucks. I'm almost tempted to splurge on a backup battery just in case that somehow ever happens and I'm on 50/11 and tired with 50 more miles to go.
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Old 04-24-21, 07:00 AM
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I have the older 6800 Di2. When the Di2 status light goes from solid green to blinking green, it's below 50% charge.
I just check every few rides, usually while riding along, by holding the front shifter button for a couple of seconds. Once I see blinking green, I recharge soon.

Yes, I've had the front stop shifting on a ride--oops, solid red! I just forgot to check.

There's no advantage to letting it go lower, the battery doesn't need to be discharged for long life. I finally replaced my original seatpost battery after more than 5 years. I was having to charge about every 300 miles when the original was old.

After more than 7 years, and more than 25000 miles, everything still works perfectly. The shift buttons are fine, and the rear derailleur has no play in the pivots. It's still fast and precise.

Last edited by rm -rf; 04-24-21 at 07:07 AM.
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Old 04-24-21, 07:53 AM
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^ Oh so it's just the front derailleur that stops working? That's a relief.

Generally speaking, though, does anyone know how long a battery lasts once it reaches that point? I'm sure it varies, depending on age, but assuming it's new, I wonder if there's still a few hundred miles worth of "average" amounts of shifting left or much less than that.
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Old 04-24-21, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by August West View Post
For me having the current gear ratio (50-14, 34-22 etc.) displayed in my head unit would be enough reason to have the D-Fly unit. It, along with my heart rate are the two fields that I have displayed on every page on my Garmin 830.
Yours displays the ratio? My wahoo only displays what gear on a bar graph looking display. Unless I donít know how to make it do that.

That would be nice to see the ratio.
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Old 04-24-21, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
Having to go back home with a single speed is usually painful enough to not forget it after
The first time I was at work, the FD stopped working on the way in...I thought I had enough to get home, so I just tuned off the sync shift and used the RD, and then it went dead...but, going home was generally downhill, so it wasn't painful. The next time was brutal. I did complete the ride, but I pay close attention now.

Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
^ Oh so it's just the front derailleur that stops working? That's a relief
The FD stops working first. The system will stop shifting it, to preserve battery power to run the RD. The FD uses a lot more power. I can't remember how many shifts are left in the RD at that point, maybe 100? With careful gear management one in theory can limp it him on the RD alone.

Originally Posted by Greatestalltime View Post
Yours displays the ratio? My wahoo only displays what gear on a bar graph looking display. Unless I donít know how to make it do that.

That would be nice to see the ratio.
Compatible Garmins will allow for display of gears by teeth (e.g., 50-16), position (on the cog/crankset, e.g., 2-8), a visual display of the gear position (literally a series of bars of variable length to look like the cogs or chain rings, and then the one selected is colored, the rest are gray), or ratio (mathsss).
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Old 04-24-21, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Badger6 View Post
The FD stops working first. The system will stop shifting it, to preserve battery power to run the RD. The FD uses a lot more power. I can't remember how many shifts are left in the RD at that point, maybe 100? With careful gear management one in theory can limp it him on the RD alone.
Gotcha! Thanks again for your help. It's good to have even a vague idea of how many more shifts would remain. I'll be on the rm -rf wave, though, and will charge before it turns red, so hopefully it'll never get to that point.
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Old 04-24-21, 11:26 PM
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As an alternative you can add a display unit (MT800 or M9051) that plugs into the junction box and displays both actual battery level and gears and can program the shifting, etc. They also provide wireless commuication to your phone (watch out for the M9050, it doesn't). They are technically MTB units (XT and XTR respectively) but I've seen that roadies use them. Lots of YouTube videos on installation, funtionality, etc. I plan to get one (MT800) for my wife's new Di2 bike that didn't come with the little hidden wireless unit. She doesn't have a fancy computer (like yours truly does), but likes to use the old school Cateye she is familiar with. I've given up trying to get her too much in the weeds with that sort of thing, like getting a bike computer with more features, but she will appreciate a simple display on the handlbars. Might even come to appreciate what the phone app can do. This thing is a little spendy (compared to a Di2 bike? Nah) but should be dead easy to install and use, allows, but doesn't require the use of a phone app or computer, and doesn't require a compatible bike computer.

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Old 04-25-21, 01:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Camilo View Post
As an alternative you can add a display unit (MT800 or M9051) that plugs into the junction box and displays both actual battery level and gears and can program the shifting, etc. They also provide wireless commuication to your phone (watch out for the M9050, it doesn't). They are technically MTB units (XT and XTR respectively) but I've seen that roadies use them. Lots of YouTube videos on installation, funtionality, etc. I plan to get one (MT800) for my wife's new Di2 bike that didn't come with the little hidden wireless unit. She doesn't have a fancy computer (like yours truly does), but likes to use the old school Cateye she is familiar with. I've given up trying to get her too much in the weeds with that sort of thing, like getting a bike computer with more features, but she will appreciate a simple display on the handlbars. Might even come to appreciate what the phone app can do. This thing is a little spendy (compared to a Di2 bike? Nah) but should be dead easy to install and use, allows, but doesn't require the use of a phone app or computer, and doesn't require a compatible bike computer.
Thanks for the recommendation. Outside of the wireless communication, there's a few reasons why I don't think that would be an essential piece for me.

First, the battery level doesn't have a percentage amount and looks exactly like the level in the program, so not a huge selling point for me on that end. Especially when I can get somewhat of a comparable (and practically instantaneous) reading by clicking the shifters.

Programming the shifting is something that can be done on the EW-RS910 bar end junction box - double tap for semi-syncro, double for full syncro and then double once again to bring you back to manual - so no need on that end either.

As for displaying the gears? It wasn't until I started reading some of the stuff you guys post on here that the thought even crossed my mind. To be honest with you, not only do I not pay attention to stuff like that when I'm riding, but I don't even know why you would need to know which gear you're in. I think I recall someone on here mentioning that it has something to do with cadence, but I don't remember exactly what the person said. So since I'm new to this whole cadence thing (assuming that's what it's useful for), I don't feel as though it's something I absolutely need to have at this present moment.

And the last and I would say least important thing is looks. My handlebar's already pretty full as is, with the light and computer and my phone. I had my light and the Garmin installed alone and thought it looked super clean, but when I added the phone, it looked "busy." So adding another element to the equation (even if it was something I may have needed) is something I would prefer not to do. Maybe it's just me, but I would rather upgrade my computer at some later point in time when I feel as though I'm growing in my knowledge of riding and use the D-fly unit than to have a fourth piece of gear taking up space on the bars.

Anyway, I feel like an ass turning down people's suggestions, but as always, I do appreciate and value the help I get from everyone on here very much. I'm just trying not to spend money when I don't need to. Hope you guys understand.
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Old 04-25-21, 05:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
I feel like an ass turning down people's suggestions, but as always, I do appreciate and value the help I get from everyone on here very much. I'm just trying not to spend money when I don't need to. Hope you guys understand.
Donít. Your questions were remarkably different (in substance and expectation) than asking about a 30+ pound bike with garbage components looking for affirmation from a bunch of folks whoíve been riding quality bikes for years. D-Fly is NOT a requirement to have Di2, it can enhance the experience, but it isnít necessary. Thatís my opinions.

As for what gear youíre in, I donít look or care either. I can tell by feel when I am outside my normal cadence range, and I know how to shift the gears to get there based on the salutation (wind, hills up or down, etc.). Itís a ďnice to haveĒ, but definitely not necessary for even a moderately experienced rider.
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Old 04-25-21, 05:54 AM
  #25  
silverado8405
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Thanks for the recommendation. Outside of the wireless communication, there's a few reasons why I don't think that would be an essential piece for me.

First, the battery level doesn't have a percentage amount and looks exactly like the level in the program, so not a huge selling point for me on that end. Especially when I can get somewhat of a comparable (and practically instantaneous) reading by clicking the shifters.

Programming the shifting is something that can be done on the EW-RS910 bar end junction box - double tap for semi-syncro, double for full syncro and then double once again to bring you back to manual - so no need on that end either.

As for displaying the gears? It wasn't until I started reading some of the stuff you guys post on here that the thought even crossed my mind. To be honest with you, not only do I not pay attention to stuff like that when I'm riding, but I don't even know why you would need to know which gear you're in. I think I recall someone on here mentioning that it has something to do with cadence, but I don't remember exactly what the person said. So since I'm new to this whole cadence thing (assuming that's what it's useful for), I don't feel as though it's something I absolutely need to have at this present moment.

And the last and I would say least important thing is looks. My handlebar's already pretty full as is, with the light and computer and my phone. I had my light and the Garmin installed alone and thought it looked super clean, but when I added the phone, it looked "busy." So adding another element to the equation (even if it was something I may have needed) is something I would prefer not to do. Maybe it's just me, but I would rather upgrade my computer at some later point in time when I feel as though I'm growing in my knowledge of riding and use the D-fly unit than to have a fourth piece of gear taking up space on the bars.

Anyway, I feel like an ass turning down people's suggestions, but as always, I do appreciate and value the help I get from everyone on here very much. I'm just trying not to spend money when I don't need to. Hope you guys understand.
I find knowing what gear Iím in to be incredibly helpful for going up hills. I have some around me that I know I can do in the big ring and some that need the small ring. Then thereís the times that I forget to pay attention and have to make a decision, do I shift up and get to where I need to be or is there too many jumps and I dump the front to the little ring and keep going. The last case is when Iím going down hill and start to think Iím superman and spinning out the hardest gear only to realize I have a couple more downshifts to go and Iím not going to win the Tour De France thanks to my absolutely awesome power output.

in short, no itís not needed but there are cases where it may be useful to know some of that information.
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