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Niner RLT 9 RDO Build

Old 04-11-17, 10:19 AM
  #101  
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Originally Posted by rickyk76 View Post
Great, detailed thread! I don't know that I'd have the patience to go through all of this. I DO know that I don't have the mechanical aptitude to attempt it.

Did you ever see the movie Runway Train with John Voigt?

I love the line where he says, "You don't know what you can do, what you can't!"



-Tim-
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Old 04-11-17, 11:35 AM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Did you ever see the movie Runway Train with John Voigt?

I love the line where he says, "You don't know what you can do, what you can't!"



-Tim-
I haven't seen it. I'm sure he wasn't thinking of me when he said it though. lol
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Old 04-11-17, 11:56 AM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Yeah, find out what they used to fix the hydraulic line to the mount if you can.

Do you think an autobody shop would have plugs?

I'm thinking of doing something like the ANT+ remote control lights in the photo below so that's two plugs right there.

[I MG]http://www.gravelcyclist.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/VanDesselWTF-Vincent-2015-6.jpg[/IMG]


-Tim-
I'll have my fine steed (sans final outfitting like stem) in my hands come tomorrow and can tell ya.

As far as those mount-fills...I read online that some fellow lost one and Niner had none to sell/replace with. Whether they're a standard part I have no idea. More fool-proof just to put in a bolt in them with a mild thread locker. Just playing looking at the fork and dry-fitting my front rack one popped out onto my floor and took 5 minutes to find.
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Old 04-11-17, 08:20 PM
  #104  
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Hey Tim....a few ideas for you. As with everything Problem Solvers has it:

Problem Solvers

Least I think the Niner forks use M5 bolts.

Problem Solvers
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Old 04-12-17, 08:18 AM
  #105  
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04-12-17

Brake Fluid Fail

Working with the brakes has been the most time consuming aspect of this build so far. Shimano documentation leaves out many steps in the bleed process and the practicalities of this particular application required a bit of creativity.

The bike went up in the stand sans wheels. Brake pads were removed and yellow bleed blocks put in their place. The fluid port at the top of the brake levers needs to be the highest point and so the bike was rotated in the stand with the bars up. This nose-up orientation required securing the bars with string so that they wouldn't flop over. In retrospect I probably should have loosened the face plate on the stem and just rotated the bars but that would have been way too easy and wouldn't have looked nearly as rediculous. I clearly wasn't at my best mentally.



Nevertheless, the fluid port on the brake lever was opened with care taken to ensure that the o-ring isn't lost. The funnel from the Shimano TL-BT03 bleed kit was screwed into the fluid port's threaded opening. Down at the caliper, the rubber dust cover was removed from the bleed port, a 7 mm box wrench was placed over the port and the hose from the syringe was placed over the nipple. The hose is secured on the nipple by way of a black plastic tool which gets jammed against the nipple. Unsure of how much fluid the system would take, I filled the syringe all the way.







Fluid was pushed up through the system until the funnel filled. The syringe was then replaced with a different hose connected to a plastic bag and the fluid allowed to drain back down through the system into the bag as per Shimano documentation. Several iterations of opening and closing the bleed port while depressing and releasing the lever followed, also as per Shimano documentation. No bubbles were seen in the fluid either up top at the funnel or down below at the caliper and so the fluid port at the lever was sealed, bleed nipple at the caliper closed, oil cleaned up and pads/spring reinstalled along with the orange Shimano brake block.









The brakes felt horrible with the levers going almost all the way to the bar. I repeated the entire process to be sure that there wasn't still air in the system but results were the same. The classic definition of insanity prompted an evening of rereading documentation, watching videos and looking at message boards in an effort to determine what I missed or did incorrectly. Bleeding brakes isn't theoretical astrophysics and something is clearly missing from the process I am using.

One thing my reading revealed is the presence of a free stroke adjustment on the brake lever. Apparently this is set to the minimum setting from the factory and according to the internet, has to be set to maximum for bleeding. The publicly available Shimano documentation does not make mention of the free stroke adjustment as part of the bleed process but according to some the Shimano S-Tech website available to dealers and technicians does. It's worth a try. Feel free to post your ideas.




-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-12-17 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 04-12-17, 12:02 PM
  #106  
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Tim, I've been enjoying your build thread, this bike is coming along nicely! I have had similar issues when setting up my RS785/RS685 caliper/STIs, and have a few suggestions.

One step I didn't see you mention comes after the "opening and closing the bleed port while depressing and releasing the lever". You close the bleed port on the caliper, and then with the funnel still installed (and filled with oil), squeeze the levers. The first one will go back to the bar, but the next one should really start to firm things up. Usually I have some more bubbles appear in the funnel after doing this. Then I loosen the stem faceplate, and rotate the bars down about 45 degress (still with funnel attached, but careful to make sure oil is still covering the hole at the bottom of the funnel), squeeze a few more times until no more bubbles appear, then I rotate the bars 45 degrees upwards, and repeat. After that, I plug and remove the funnel, then close the port on the lever.

It's kind of tricky, but when I'm bleeding from the top down with the plastic bag, I don't mount the rear caliper to the frame and found that giving it a few good taps with a handle and moving it around can help free up some more air. Just be careful that the tube and bag don't come off the bleed port when doing this.

I've also bled these with the freestroke backed out, but didn't notice THAT much improvement. I did find adjusting the reach of the levers to be as far from the bar when bleeding did help some.

I feel your pain and I had to bleed my brakes more than I'd like to admit until I felt they were acceptable, but now they are pretty solid. Once you do get them setup, they are pretty much maintenance free and work really well.
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Old 04-12-17, 12:42 PM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post

The brakes felt horrible with the levers going almost all the way to the bar. I repeated the entire process to be sure that there wasn't still air in the system but results were the same. The classic definition of insanity prompted an evening of rereading documentation, watching videos and looking at message boards in an effort to determine what I missed or did incorrectly. Bleeding brakes isn't theoretical astrophysics and something is clearly missing from the process I am using.
-Tim-
Most likely you have air trapped in the caliper. The simplest solution is to use the top down approach, but un-bolt the caliper and move it around a bunch, then make sure the exit nipple is at the highest point on the caliper. In your picture (very helpful), the bleed port is at the bottom, so air will rise to the top of the caliper. You'll be shocked just how much air you had trapped in the caliper.

Tapping the hose can also help dislodge bubbles. Move the caliper around for ~10sec, open the port for 2s, leave it open until you don't get air, close and repeat several times.

Once you get the process down, it's pretty simple.
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Old 04-12-17, 05:38 PM
  #108  
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1.Use syringe at caliper to push fluid through system and into funnel.

2. Hook up hose and bag in place of syringe at caliper.

3. Slowly squeeze brake lever as you open caliper bleed port.

4.Close bleed port before you release depressed brake lever.

5. Release brake lever and fluid will be drawn from funnel.

6. Repeat 3 through 5 a few times. After 3 or 4 times squeeze the brake without bleeding it. You will feel it firm up.

Good luck!
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Old 04-12-17, 08:02 PM
  #109  
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I have brakes! Actually just a front brake but still.

It has about an inch of travel and I'm not sure if I should be unhappy about that or if it is normal but it is light years away from where it was. There was lots of air in the caliper.

@RocThrower, @gsa103 and @ckindt, I appreciate you guys so much. Each of you contributed in some way.


-Tim-
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Old 04-12-17, 09:28 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
I have brakes! Actually just a front brake but still.

It has about an inch of travel and I'm not sure if I should be unhappy about that or if it is normal but it is light years away from where it was. There was lots of air in the caliper.

-Tim-
Good!

I have no idea how much travel is normal for road hydraulics, that doesn't seem unreasonable. The main sign of a well bled system is that the lever gets very firm when the pads contact, and only moves a tiny bit even if you squeeze very firmly.

Adjusting the free-stroke screw should change the bite point, reducing your lever travel. Personally, I want my brakes to engage ASAP, others prefer a little dead-zone.
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Old 04-13-17, 07:53 PM
  #111  
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04-13-17

Front brake re-bleed and rear hydraulic fluid success

The front brake was bled yet again, if only for the practice and this time with excellent results. I let the caliper hang, turning it around and upside down and was able to extract just a few tiny bubbles. I'm not sure these were not air getting past the hose at the bleed nipple and think that it is as good as it is going to get.





Moving then to the rear, charging and bleeding went much quicker and with good results thanks to experience gained previously and the fine gentlemen above with their most excellent advice.

The first step was to turn the free stroke screw to the maximum setting. Shimano documentation claims the free stroke adjustment screw is a #2 Phillips but neither a Philips head nor a high quality Vessel brand JIS screwdriver fit and so a flat tip was used. The screw is set all the way clockwise out of the box and going by the feel of the lever it needs to be rotated approximately 1.5 turns counter-clockwise to get to the maximum setting. The screw will continue to turn until it falls out of the shifter housing so 1.5 turns is enough.



The rear caliper was disconnected from the frame and fluid was pushed up through the system using the syringe. The system holds less than 15 cc and at least three times that was pushed through, turning the caliper this way and that in an attempt to remove as much air as possible. The syringe was replaced with the fluid bag and the fluid allowed to drain, again placing the caliper in various positions as the nipple was opened and closed. At certain positions lots of air came out. The part of the process where the lever is pressed and allowed to snap open produced lots of bubbles at the funnel.

I didn't bother with photos of the process for the rear brake as it was functionally identical to the front brake.

The bike was put back together and I went over everything with a torque wrench. Then I took it to the top of the hill in the subdivision and coasted it down. I'm happy with performance although there is a slight rub on the rear caliper which will have to be tuned out. It stops really well and the levers are rock solid after initial bite.

Here are a few photos of how it stands right now.










-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-13-17 at 08:55 PM.
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Old 04-13-17, 08:04 PM
  #112  
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Oh Tim, WRT the brake line for the front fork...a cleverly-placed zip-tie is what my LBS did:

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Old 04-13-17, 08:29 PM
  #113  
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
Oh Tim, WRT the brake line for the front fork...a cleverly-placed zip-tie is what my LBS did:
Nice. Thanks for the photo!

I was at Lowes today and picked up a bag of plastic cable tiedowns in the electrical aisle. These were too brittle and cracked but they have others made of nylon which I will try.

Something like this...




-Tim-
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Old 04-13-17, 08:53 PM
  #114  
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Sorry if this is too late, but I found putting some high vacuum grease in the Luer Lock of the syringe was the key to purging air from the system. Basically, what this allows you to do is to pull the plunger partially out, to create a very low pressure in the syringe barrel, and that very effectively purges air bubbles from the system.
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Old 04-13-17, 09:04 PM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Sorry if this is too late, but I found putting some high vacuum grease in the Luer Lock of the syringe was the key to purging air from the system. Basically, what this allows you to do is to pull the plunger partially out, to create a very low pressure in the syringe barrel, and that very effectively purges air bubbles from the system.
Nothing to apologize about. The advice is appreciated more than you know.

I had to look up Luer Lock AKA slip tip.

High vacuum grease... Yikes! That stuff is expensive.

Experimenting, I actually tried pulling back on the syringe and got some air out but could not tell if some of it was air getting past where the hose attaches to the bleed nipple. What you recommend makes perfect sense to me.

I really appreciate any advice at all.


-Tim-
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Old 04-13-17, 09:27 PM
  #116  
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after all this, you're going to hate yourself to get it dirty.
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Old 04-13-17, 09:45 PM
  #117  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Nothing to apologize about. The advice is appreciated more than you know.

I had to look up Luer Lock AKA slip tip.

High vacuum grease... Yikes! That stuff is expensive.

Experimenting, I actually tried pulling back on the syringe and got some air out but could not tell if some of it was air getting past where the hose attaches to the bleed nipple. What you recommend makes perfect sense to me.

I really appreciate any advice at all.


-Tim-
You might be able to use something like Vaseline. I am kind of spoiled as I have huge tubes of vacuum grease at work. I have to confess I have no idea how much it costs.
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Old 04-14-17, 06:53 AM
  #118  
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Now that you're almost done, just wanted to say thanks for a great and painstakingly thorough account of your build. Damned gorgeous.

(Curious about how those G-Ones are on the road.)
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Old 04-14-17, 06:59 AM
  #119  
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Originally Posted by athrowawaynic View Post
(Curious about how those G-Ones are on the road.)
So am I

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-14-17 at 07:54 AM.
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Old 04-15-17, 12:02 AM
  #120  
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Miscellany

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Old 04-16-17, 09:08 AM
  #121  
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04-15-17

Di2 Wiring Started

Di2 components are surprisingly small and light. I was expecting heavy cables and a battery as large as a seatpost but that isn't the case. Even so, installation wasn't without its challenges and this was expected going in.

The first challenge was the plan to use the Barfly GPS mount for Junction A. Concerns about clearance between the junction and a Light & Motion Urban 800 light turned out to be unfounded. The setup looks like the Starship Enterprise.




Both hydraulic hoses and E-Tube wires were trying to occupy the same space however, and using it this way seemed like a failure waiting to happen. The wires and hoses contended with each other especially hard when turning the handlebar.




Like many, I was hoping for a cleaner look but fell back to plan B for the time being, the Shimano supplied stem mount. This uses a rubber strap around the stem which is cut to size and attached to a small mount via two hooks. The Junction box slides onto the mount and prevents the straps from falling off the hooks. Shimano documentation only hinted at the need to cut the strap.






E-Tube wires were fed through the frame. The front derailleur wire needed little help and the internal channels made installation of the downtube wire very easy. An internal structure partially blocks the inside of the chainstays and the rear derailleur wire had to be attached to a piece of brake housing to feed it through. The same brake housing was required to feed the seat tube wire past the bottom bracket shell.





The wireless unit will be placed inline between junction B and the seatpost mounted battery. This was wrapped in foam so it doesn't rattle and fed into the seat tube. The seatpost battery mount is in transit and so the wire was temporarily taped to the frame so it doesn't fall into the seat tube.








Continued next post...

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-16-17 at 09:23 AM.
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Old 04-16-17, 09:09 AM
  #122  
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...continued from previous post.

All four wires were now exposed at the bottom bracket and Junction B was attached. The junction fit neatly into the bottom bracket hatch. Securing the cover over the hatch was a very satisfying moment.










The rear derailluer wire installed easily and it took a while for me to find where the wire plugs into the front derailleur. I don't like the way the front derailleur wire routes between the derailleur cage and frame. It looks like it can be pinched when shifting to the small ring and I spent a lot of time fiddling with this wire after reinstalling the derailleur onto the frame. Time will tell.






Grommets have me completely baffled. I've absolutely no idea what to do with the holes in the downtube and chainstay. Niner included plugs to fill the holes and I split two of these and used them as makeshift grommets but they look pretty bad. The hole for the front derailleur wire is round but I'm sure the grommets supplied with the frame are for oval holes and it clearly doesn't fill the hole correctly. The front derailleur hole is an easy fix as Shimano sells grommets for both round and oval holes but I'm at a loss for the chainstay and downtube holes.

The first photo below shows the plug which was split and used as a grommet for the rear derailleur wire on the chainstay. The second photo shows a grommet for an oval hole shoved into the round hole.






Running the wires at the bar still has to be done and then the bar can be wrapped. Meanwhile, any advice on grommets would be appreciated. I'm wondering if Niner included the correct grommets with the frame and will give them a call after the holiday.


-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-16-17 at 09:19 AM.
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Old 04-16-17, 09:20 AM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
...continued from previous post.

All four wires were now exposed at the bottom bracket and Junction B was attached. The junction fit neatly into the bottom bracket hatch. Securing the cover over the hatch was a very satisfying moment.

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/kffwjlxa2bff6b0/04-15-17.di2.020.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/iixlttpf51qok26/04-15-17.di2.021.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/f8l98j86rs5mg93/04-15-17.di2.022.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/jlmztqn8qwim13g/04-15-17.di2.023.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]


The rear derailluer wire installed easily and it took a while for me to find where the wire plugs into the front derailleur. I don't like the way the front derailleur wire routes between the derailleur cage and frame. It looks like it can be pinched when shifting to the small ring and I spent a lot of time fiddling with this wire after reinstalling the derailleur onto the frame. Time will tell.

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/qeqpnixc151zf1z/04-15-17.di2.005.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/m10q6e44f20m19t/04-15-17.di2.010.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]


Grommets have me completely baffled. I've absolutely no idea what to do with the holes in the downtube and rear chainstay. Niner included plugs to fill the holes and I split two of these just to have something but they look pretty bad. The hole for the front derailleur wire is round but I'm sure the grommets supplied with the frame are for oval holes and it clearly doesn't fill the hole correctly. The front derailleur hole is an easy fix as Shimano sells grommets for both round and oval holes but I'm at a loss for the chainstay and downtube holes.

The first photo below shows the plug which was split and used as a grommet for the rear derailleur wire on the chainstay. The second photo shows a grommet for an oval hole shoved into the round hole.

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/esfj5y1fglqy223/04-15-17.di2.009.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]

[IM G]https://www.dropbox.com/s/0w691a66ubtd4z9/04-15-17.di2.011.sm.jpg?dl=1[/IMG]


Running the wires at the bar still has to be done and then the bar can be wrapped. Meanwhile, any advice on grommets would be appreciated.


-Tim-
Shimano has two standard grommets. One is for holes drilled 6mm circular, and one for 7x8mm ovular (I believe the later is a standard even adopted by Campag for EPS)....reason for two "standards" was that one was for first-gen 5-pinout D/A Di2, the other came for Ultegra 1-pin Di2. Anything not one of those two drilled shapes, and I'd call the frameset maker and ask WTF.

https://www.competitivecyclist.com/s...a-di2-grommets

They need to fit and snug so they don't rattle or fall out. I actually biffed having my custom drilling on my frameset, and had them drilled 7mm circular (I asked for it, completely my fault), but the 7x8mm grommet fit in with what in stagecraft we'd call "moderate" persuasion.

Checkout my thread, I updated the post with FD routing pics so hopefully you can see it.
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Old 04-16-17, 03:38 PM
  #124  
TimothyH
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04-16-17

Di2 is functional

I tend to obsess over cabling around the head tube and stem. Today was no exception and lots of time was spent making sure hoses and wires were appropriately routed so as to prevent chafing and so that everything looks professional. I'm very happy with the results and think it looks better than the factory build I saw in the bike shop.

The picture below shows a dumb mistake. I plugged the wire into both ends but didn't realize that it was around the bar. Doh!




The photos below show examples of routing around the brake housing and near the stem. Lots of taping, untaping, adjusting wire lengths - very tedious but I believe that time spent paying attention to cables and wires at the front of the bike pay dividends later on.









The last photo above shows the brake hoses contacting the stem bolts. Some protection will go over the hose at the contact point but I'm not sure exactly what. In hindsight I wish some insulation had been placed on the hoses prior to plumbing the hydraulics. Overall however, I'm extremely pleased with how it turned out, especially in terms of aesthetics.

A seatpost mount for the battery is not yet in hand and so my daughter and I came up with the idea of using arts and crafts foam to secure the battery temporarily. She had it in stock and picked out the color.




The rear derailleur shifted as soon as the battery was plugged but the front derailleur was dead. A good friend taught me to always do the easy and cheap thing first and so I checked the connection at the front derailleur and sure enough, the connector was not snapped into the port all the way.

The videos below show the result. The front derailleur trimming as the rear is shifted really surprised me! It can be heard as the rear is upshifted. Super neat!!!





Black Lizard Skin DSP tape will eventually be used but for now the bar was quickly wrapped in some faux cork tape I had lying around.




-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 04-16-17 at 03:53 PM.
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Old 04-16-17, 03:51 PM
  #125  
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Tim! Quick! Get a chain on that bad boy and ride!!! You have daylight still!

Srsly, looking good. The old "High Oxygen/Low Copper Content Interconnect" has doomed many an endeavor. I was sweating because my LBS asked me to bring my charger over during build as Di2 wasn't showing any sign of life (I'd charged it and updated firmware before handing stuff over)....plugged it in and nothing....turned out the mounted battery's cable wasn't quite firmly seated.

Last edited by Marcus_Ti; 04-16-17 at 03:56 PM.
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