A whole host of useful new Di2 accessories have recently arrived on the scene that allow you to get even more out of your new R9150 Dura-Ace groupset – the good news is that pretty much all the updates are available to anyone currently using the 9070 or 6870 versions of Dura-Ace and Ultegra too. So here’s a couple of bits I’ve done recently…
Pretty much everyone with Di2 wants the new Handlebar mounted Junction box (EW-RS910) which really tidies the whole cockpit area up – You can read about how I fitted one of the first ones to a Bianchi by clicking on this text. Since then a client (and friend) of mine has bought the 9150 group and asked me to fit it to his Parlee. Interestingly he was running ENVE carbon bars and there’s two problems with that – the end of the bar isn’t open, it has a chamfered end with a fixed rubber bung and secondly I reckon that ENVE probably fit strengthening into the STi clamp area meaning I couldn’t fit a SD-50 wire through the center of the bar like I did with the Bianchi’s alloy bars.
The solution is to find a carbon bar that is pre-drilled for internal routing and then in this way you can run the wire through the stem clamp area and then under the tape everywhere else. With a little gel you can barely notice the wires. We had a bit of a run-around when Chris told me he was going on holiday with his bike the following day, but all’s well that ends well as they say and the Parlee came out looking amazing in the Majorcan sun (and the Sussex drizzle)!
If you fit one of the new BT-DN110 batteries like I have done with Del’s Boardman SlR 9.8, you will now have the ability to Syncro Shift your gears. Basically Syncro Shift is a system that has been used by mountain bikers for two years that allows the bike to choose when to shift the front mech based on pre-written firmware. This allows the rider to simply focus on making the gears “easier” or “harder” and completely removes the cross-over gears from the system. In any system (Di2 or cabled) several of the chainring/cassette combinations are so similar that they are rendered useless, meaning that a 22 speed bike (2x11speed) is in truth only really a 15 or 16 speed bike – the clever bit with Syncro Shift is it basically avoids all of those pointless cross-over gears.
There is also Semi-Syncro which gives the rider back more control – it only cuts in when you shift the front mech and basically adjusts the rear gears to maintain cadence at the time of the shift… I find myself doing this naturally when I’m out riding so I think it’s my favorite setting as it replicates how we’d normally shift whilst giving the rider more manual control. These three modes (Syncro, Semi and Manual) are controlled and selected from the junction box but need to be set up via the e-Tube app on your computer, unless;
Unless you also want to fit the new EW-WU111 inline wireless sending unit (which you do). This allows you to change modes via your Phone or Garmin and gives you full Wireless, ANT+ and Bluetooth connectability. I’ve fitted three now and they all seem relatively straight forward to set-up and then adjust. They’re much neater than the older units and actually make the job of fitting the handlebar mounted junction much simpler. You can save multiple shift modes on your phone and swap between them as much as you’d like. Del’s been playing with several different set-ups and talking to him I think the Semi Syncro System works best. I would imagine the full Syncro Shift is great for new riders getting into the sport. Both bikes are looking fantastic and feedback so far has been excellent.
Photos by Glen Whittington.
Glen rides for the Southborough & District Wheelers. He races mountain bikes, road bikes, TT and ‘cross at local and national level. He receives personal support from Helly Hansen, Scott Sports, The Velo House, and the.æight.bicycle.cømpany. Glen runs The Velo House with Olly, a coffee shop, workshop and bike shop welcoming all cyclists and non-cyclists, based at 5 St.Johns Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN4 9TN – 01892 554 505 – firstname.lastname@example.org. He also contributes to Simpson Mag @eightbikeco #aeightracer