Sunday, August 30, 2009

"The Look"

Friday and Saturday high temps were 100 degrees and sort of humid, not SE USA steamy mind you, but heavy. I imagined the people out here, who know where I'm from, giving me "the look" as if I brought this weather with me. Most older homes out here don't have ac, so people will be very happy that todays high is predicted to be 83 and Monday cooler still. Thank goodness, they may have shipped me back to North Carolina, as if having me here was some kind of bad luck.
I stopped in another bike shop on my day off. THE Pro shop in the area. They had a Shimano field rep there with some wheels on display, and a bike built up with the new Dura-Ace Di2 electronic group installed. I won't take the time to explain it all to you, loyal reader, the bike press has done that and if you are interested, you've already read that. But I will give you my feedback. It certainly looked nice on a gleaming all carbon Lapierre road bike. I didn't get to ride it, but it was on a work stand and I was invited to run it through the gears. It has a gentle motor buzz when you tap the lever. The feedback through the fingers is a little like the feel you get from a mechanical shifter, more gentle, but with a little click-stop. The amazing thing is the front derailleur trims itself to keep the chain from rubbing as you cross the cassette. As other reviewers have noted the front shifting is a revelation. I made the slight easing off crank presure that an experienced rider will habitually do. But this thing shifts better when you keep hammering. It seems you can't make a bad front shift. Bike companys are already fitting their frames to accept this group more cosmetically. I still am not a great fan of the Shimano design and ergo aesthetic, but this group is well engineered. It is said to have been 9 years in development, so I imagine you will be seeing more of this in lower price groups as the economy of scale kicks in. It will cost you dearly to buy it now, but plenty is available as Shimano doesn't need to hesitate bringing it to market. I was thinking- the cost over the three year warrantee period would be less than the depreciation of many new cars! I sound like a Shimano salesman! Me, I will be staying with Campagnolo 10 speed as long as I can get parts. They are rebuildable.
Oh, don't worry about me and the wildfires, they are way south of here. For some reason they don't seem to be as much of a problem here.
Stay well and enjoy the ride.

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