Di2 testing and development - First Impressions

Mid upgrading.
Over the weekend, the Genesis has had a number of mid-life refreshes put on.   In progress/completed:

Fitted new rear wheel - 
  • Hub: Alfine 11sp Di2, 32h
  • Rim: DT Swiss RR521, 32h
  • Spokes: DT Swiss
  • Disc: Shimano centre lock Freezr 140mm
New front wheel - 
  • Hub:  Shutter Precision SP8, 24h, 6 bolt 
  • Rim: DT Swiss RR521 24h
  • Spokes: DT Swiss
  • Disc: Shimano 6-bolt 160mm
  • Tyres (front and back) - Continental GP GT 28mm
Other developments/work done/in progress:
  • Di2 etube cables fitted - missing JC to left shifter at mo but on order.
  • Fitted new Junction Box under stem.
  • Stem has been dropped, giving a lower front end.
  • Fitted Ultegra 6770 series mechanical/Di2 levers
  • BB fender bolt point drilled out, re-tapped and guards no longer rattle!
  • New bar tape
  • Rear non-drive M5 bolt point for guards being re-threaded
The rear guard stay on the non-drive side has a sheared bolt which is part drilled out and needs tapping.   From guards just fit around the bigger rubber, but the PDW screws are rubbish so this is taking a fair bit of work (and power tools). 

In fitting the new front wheel, the non-drive spokes are contacting the TRP Spyre caliper, so currently on the older Alex Rim XT-Lite/Alfine dynamo hub up front for now until corrected.

Pic above is in part build, but gives and idea of look.

First impressions.

This morning was my first run on the new rear end and shifters.   Wow!   From the saddle, the bike feels like it has more fight to it.   There's a different feel to the ride quality and handling.  There is some brake rub at the moment which is giving it a higher resistance feel on the forward motion but the differences are already staggering.  The larger volume rear tyre is taking out some of the rear end knocks.  Along with the fixed rear guard, the whole rear end of the bike is more comfortable and quieter.  The front end is more aggressive with the lower bars.

And the Di2.......... it's subtle but effective in a very understated way.   The button push is light which will take some getting used to compared to the full finger extending swing of the Versa shifters.  Shifts are crisp, quiet and just "there" straight away.   As a closed system, I have no idea which gear I'm in as I'm not using either an indicator junction box nor the Garmin link (yet) so getting used the "the feel" all over again.   On a standard bike, you can glance down and see which ring and/or sprocket you're on - with the Alfine, there's no external difference.   The more logical increments in gears noticeable as it give more gear refinement over big jumps.   The touch is going to take a little adaption, and I'm thinking assigning reveres triggers on the left shifter - it'll give the largest buttons left and right for shifting up/down in cold weather and something like the SRAM system (I'm not a SRAM fan.   BikePorn doesn't involve SRAM).

Once the new front end is corrected, left shifter is brought into the system and the caliper alignment is completed, this is going to be a formidable weapon!


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