Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Shimano FlightDeck

Old 09-13-06, 01:54 PM
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cfbrtr
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Shimano FlightDeck

Does anyone have one of these? Is it any good? I'm looking at various computers and knowing what gear I'm in really means nothing to me. I like the idea of integrated button in the shifter though. If anyone has one and has some positives/negatives please let me know.

Thanks
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Old 09-13-06, 02:08 PM
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Some people love them and others such as myself don't. It would go into pause on it's own. I would be midway through a ride and even though the speedo and cadence were working fine the unit was actualy in pause mode and not keeping track on my averages or miles. I do ride on the hoods most of the time so it is possible that my left thumb was hitting the left button while riding putting the unit into pause mode. After trying to live with it for a few weeks I gave up on it.
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Old 09-13-06, 02:09 PM
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I like mine. It is easy to scroll through the differnet funtions (speed, average speed, top speed, distance, cadence, etc.) with the buttons. There are two modes, A and B, of functions. You can reset your A mode by accident, so you will learn to stay in the B mode while riding (B mode has cadence, I want to stay in that one anyway).

My wish would be to integrate heartrate into the Flightdeck. I don't like to have too much stuff cluttering my handlebars.
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Old 09-13-06, 02:13 PM
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The only real advantage on those is the integrated controls and the gearing indicator. On a 1/2bike: usless. I would have nothing else on my tandem. I need the gearing indicator for the tandem and the inline controls are a necessity with my wife on the bike...I take my hands off the 'wheel' as little as possible (we mostly group ride). The Garmin Edge 305 is the cat's meow on a 1/2bike.
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Old 09-13-06, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by cfbrtr
Does anyone have one of these? Is it any good? I'm looking at various computers and knowing what gear I'm in really means nothing to me. I like the idea of integrated button in the shifter though. If anyone has one and has some positives/negatives please let me know.

Thanks
I have no fantom issues with mine. And I love the virtual cadence.

My biggest gripe is I can't customize the screens. I can only post cadence with speed. I would like to be able to view cadence and distance or cadence with elapsed time, etc.
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Old 09-13-06, 06:16 PM
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I had one of these, and was about 130 miles into the MS150 and it just decided to reset. I lost all the data, and I was really looking forward to comparing the average speed from both days. Also, it doesn't have a clock, which I find annoying.
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Old 09-13-06, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by tcoop25
Also, it doesn't have a clock, which I find annoying.
mine's got a clock. use it all the time.

as for the pausing during a ride thing, put it in the virtual cadence mode, and it won't switch off during a ride.

I like it.
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Old 09-13-06, 06:32 PM
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I like my FlightDeck, but when it came time to buy another bike, I decided the Cateye Astrale 8 would do just fine for less money. There are occasions when I wish I had my FlightDeck on my new bike, though.
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Old 09-13-06, 06:52 PM
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I've had one since March.

Pros:
  • The gearing display is handy-- you'll likely use it more than you think
  • The hood buttons are kind of neat... but I don't tend to switch around much while riding. I can check the data when I get home.
Cons:
  • I've had mine appear to stop recording and go blank mid ride. Somehow it still manages to track the rides though (all the stats are there)
  • It's got a slow refresh rate... It takes ~4-5s to update
  • No backlight
  • No countdown feature. Distance or time.
  • Cadence is "virtual". Fine if you're pedaling but it also shows a calculated cadence while coasting.
  • No average Cadence feature
  • With only 2 display modes, I find it annoying that I can't get all the info I want on one screen.
IMO, you can get a much better computer for less money. I have a Specialized speedzone Elite on my mountain bike and it's way easier to use and has more features than the Flight Deck. That particular computer was also HALF the price of the Flightdeck.
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Old 09-13-06, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dangerman

as for the pausing during a ride thing, put it in the virtual cadence mode, and it won't switch off during a ride.

I like it.
Mine would go into pause no mater what screen I was in. I tried everything
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Old 09-13-06, 07:56 PM
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I have had mine for many years. No problems so far. One of my favorite function is the virtual cadence. When I am at the bottom of a hill and begin to pedal and can easily tell if I am in the correct gear or not. I have not looked at a computer since and am not really sure of the latest and greatest but I like my flightdeck.
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Old 09-13-06, 08:28 PM
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+1 for all the comments. I like the Flight Deck on my tandem as the gear display is crucial. I also like the ability to pause the distance function since on rides with cue sheets I can skip the off sheet excursions (e.g., avoids questions like "how far was that bathroom detour?").

On the other hand, on a 1/2 bike, you can get 4 or 5 decent wireless computers or 2 or 3 higher end wireless computers at Performance or Nashbar for the price of 1 Flight Deck and the gear display and distance pause just don't matter that much.

Also, installing the Flight Deck is much more of a pain than most as you have to run the control wires under your bar tape and into your brifters.

Ira
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Old 09-13-06, 08:32 PM
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When I started using mine, I thought it was the greatest thing ever with the remote buttons and the gear indicator.....

Now after using my Double Wireless Cateye for most of the season, I find if I was to have only 1 CPC, it would be the Cateye, I like the functionallity of it and the information it gives me.

I still like the Flightdeck and think it's cool....
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Old 09-13-06, 09:04 PM
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Pros:
Virtual Cadence - Some people think this is a con, I think they're insane. It's the best of both worlds. Who needs a computer to say 0 when you're not pedaling? But otoh, if you're coasting down a hill you can use the virtual cadence to be better prepared to start pedaling again
Integrated buttons - Rock
Gear display

Cons:
Way more expensive than similar
Semi-crappy interface for setting options, setting clock, etc.

Note: The pausing by accident thing is (no offense) user error (even though I've done it myself). There are only a few displays that will allow you to pause the trip, you just need to stay out of those.
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Old 09-13-06, 09:08 PM
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Just my two cents. I have had my FlightDeck all season and I have experienced the auto shut off, and lost valuable ride information. So now I only have the FlightDeck on our tandem. There the gearing indicator is really useful as you can't just look down, if you are the captain, to see what gear you are in. I have now switched over to my Garmin Edge 305 for both my road bikes. It is capable of storing three bike setting, gives actual cadence and has a heart rate monitor, eliminating the need to wear my Polar. I will try this set-up for one season and maybe I might change my mind again.

I do not despise the FD, it's just that it is far from perfect and the flaws are just too annoying to continue with it longterm.
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Old 09-13-06, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Brillig
Pros:
...

Note: The pausing by accident thing is (no offense) user error (even though I've done it myself). There are only a few displays that will allow you to pause the trip, you just need to stay out of those.
Unfortunately those displays are the most valuable on a particular trip as they include the Trip Time (not the stopwatch, which is useless on long multi-hour trips) and the Trip Distance. It is not user error that expects these modes to Auto-Pause not Auto-Stop like they currently do!
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Old 09-13-06, 09:28 PM
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Originally Posted by jschen
I like my FlightDeck, but when it came time to buy another bike, I decided the Cateye Astrale 8 would do just fine for less money. There are occasions when I wish I had my FlightDeck on my new bike, though.
I use the flightdeck on two of my bikes. I think you can program up to four different bikes into the flightdeck.
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Old 09-13-06, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Nachoman
Originally Posted by jschen
I like my FlightDeck, but when it came time to buy another bike, I decided the Cateye Astrale 8 would do just fine for less money. There are occasions when I wish I had my FlightDeck on my new bike, though.
I use the flightdeck on two of my bikes. I think you can program up to four different bikes into the flightdeck.
I think he meant that he didn't have the expensive wiring parts on his second bike, but you probably already knew that.
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Old 09-13-06, 10:01 PM
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I'll refer you to a previous post of mine which should answer some questions.

There are a lot of things I like about the FlightDeck and some things I don't like. As far as things to complain about on the FlightDeck:
  1. Wireless can get screwed up with errant magnetic fields such as traffic sensors.
  2. Display on the older 6500 unit used to show gear ratio as well as gear position numerically. The newer 6501 shows number of teeth. I would like to have it show number of teeth numerically along with gear development.
  3. I sometimes forget to wake the computer (6501) by pressing the "B" button on the right backside of the computer. The 6500 woke automatically upon wheel movement. I understand this is a "feature" in order to save power.
  4. Reprogramming the computer always is a chore and tyre circumference only goes in 5mm increments. It would be nice if it went by 1mm increments with an "acceleration" feature of 5mm steps if you hold down the stepping button for more than a couple of seconds.
  5. It would be nice if it had a backlight.
  6. I'd like to see a 30 second bridge-battery so you don't lose all your settings when replacing the battery.
  7. As mentioned in another threads, some sort of split-memory feature like the Cateye CC-8000 would be great. The stupid lap-counter is useless without actually logging any information.
As I've said in another thread, personally I'd like to see the interface to the shifters be made open or licensable so that people who actually are in the business of making bike computers could use it (yes I know Campy's Ergobrain is actually made by Cateye but that's under stricter special license). For that matter, I wouldn't mind it if frame and fork manufacturers provided provisions for wiring and sensor placement themselves. I was at my FBS some time ago after a morning ride with the owner and the shop was building up a bike with Campy Record 10 and the Ergobrain. Wires were going everywhere (Ergobrain isn't wireless). The worst wire to deal with seemed to be the cadence sensor for the crank magnet. There was simply no good place to tuck or hide it.
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Old 09-13-06, 10:09 PM
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Yup, Khuon has it pegged on the FD


I passed on the Ergo Brain just because it was not wireless, and I did not want a cadence wire taped to my frame
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Old 09-14-06, 06:42 AM
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Originally Posted by WheresWaldo
Unfortunately those displays are the most valuable on a particular trip as they include the Trip Time (not the stopwatch, which is useless on long multi-hour trips) and the Trip Distance. It is not user error that expects these modes to Auto-Pause not Auto-Stop like they currently do!
You still have to "accidentally" press the B button.

If you're not pressing the B button and it's still auto-stopping, return it for a new one. You got a lemon.
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Old 09-14-06, 07:23 AM
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I have an extra display. It is basically new and I'd trade it for a decent used saddle. I like my wireless Flight Deck by the way, never had any problems in the 18 months I've owned it.
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Old 09-14-06, 08:00 AM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by Brillig
You still have to "accidentally" press the B button. .
Let's just say your right...............When I am climbing or riding hard in the hoods, I should not have to worry about where my hands are. Maybe the button is more sensitive on some peoples installs than others.
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