Di2 road bike

vickster

Legendary Member
Check the costs and availability of replacement parts for Di2, eg a rear mech is £200 or more and is a part that can get damaged

I don’t know anything about it, but as a SRAM girl, etap is an alternative.

Certainly it would be best to test ride a bike with Di2 to see if it’s all it’s cracked up to be
 

Chislenko

Active Member
Just another thing to keep charging in today's world of charging this that and the other.
 
I think that Shimano made a mistake for "paying customers who want but don't need Di2" when they moved away from the external battery, the SM-BTR1 to the seat post battery.

Okay they aren't cheap, £50-£80, but if the battery is critical to the ride, then that's not a lot to pay for a spare. Which you could just slot in and carry around as it doesn't weigh much more than a spare inner tube.
 
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fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Just bear in mind the 'eye wateringly' expensive replacement parts if you crash/drop it. I'm also not sure of compatability long term - i.e. sourcing replacement parts in time.

Factor those into the budget.
 

T4tomo

Veteran
I would love a di2 bike for the shifting performance but it is a vast sum of money 3x what I paid for my defy. Will keep looking
"shifting performance" :whistle:

my mate got a cracking deal on a bike that happened to come with Di2, he muffs up shifts more often than I do on mechanical Ultegra. if you time a shift wrong, mechanical or electronic, its still wont be smooth.
Yes it self trims, and you press a button, not push a lever, but really it doesn't make a vast amount of difference. the frame looks slightly neater as there are less cables.
He did have a bit of trouble with it soon after he got it, the local mobile mechanic reset it for him as he could figure it out himself. His winter bike needed a new cable the other morning, I did it for him pre-ride and indexed it !!
I reckon on balance there is a smidge less tweaking needed with Di2 i.e. no cable stretch or bed in etc, but it is predominantly an expensive upgrade that doesn't revolutionise your gear changing / riding experience.
 

SheilaH

Guru
I have 2 Di2 bikes, one of which I've owned for 5.5 years. The second one I bought not for the Di2, but because I got it for the same price as mechanical in a sale last Spring. I think you can forget finding any bargains from now on because of the covid/brexit combo.

Everyone's values differ, but for me the real value of Di2 is in winter. I really think I wouldn't bother for a summer bike. In winter cabled gearing deteriorates pretty quickly to the point that when you eventually change inner and outer cables it feels like a brand new bike. This doesn't happen with Di2, and the truth is that once you have set it up it is maintenance free (apart from charging of course). Equally, if you have cold, tired hands on a long winter ride Di2 is magic. No more clumsy lever throws and crashed gears at the end of a 200k in January. It shifts smoothly every time. If you are crap at changing gear anyway you will still be crap with Di2 (ie. low cadence changes etc) but the really noticeable difference is it is way simpler to change gear when out of the saddle going uphill. Some people claim that it is dificult to shift in winter gloves but I haven't found that to be a problem.

The downsides: Yes, you've got to remember to charge it. Never been a problem for me. I have a plug with a usb cable right next to my bikes for charging the plethora of lights, headphones, gps devices and di2. Contrary to what somebody says upthread there is a light indicator on the charger. There is also a charge indicator on the junction box activated with one press on any lever. You also have to remember to pump up your tyres (far more frequently) but nobody moans about that.

If it does go wrong midride you will be stuck in one gear, and it might not be a gear of your choice. However the number of times this has happened to me is zero, whereas I've had cables snap every few years. Yes, you can carry a spare cable, but it is still a ball ache. If Di2 does stop functioning it is much harder to diagnose and fix both as an individual and for a shop. However, in general, it is a very robust system. From what I can tell most issues arise from people pinching cables in BB area or seatpost area.

Expense: yes, it costs more than a cabled system. Is it worth it? Well, it isn't a clear yes. Law of diminishing returns comes into play, and it comes down to personal judgement. My view is that it isn't necessary, but it is a pleasant luxury. I'd avoid Dura-Ace (despite owning one) for this reason. Replacement Ultegra rear mech can be found for £170. Replacement Dura-ace about £450. And the functionality is pretty much the same. The pricing is not dissimilar to high end Campag, in that levers are simple and cheapish and the rear mechs are costly.

Compatibility: I don't think this is a system you buy intending for it to last 25 years. Although it may well do. I think you'll find the same issues with geared systems. 25 years ago we were on 9 speed. Can you still get a 9 speed Dura-Ace mech? It will be interesting to see what happens with backwards compatibility.

TLDR: If it was for a summer only bike I wouldn't bother unless you are loaded. If it was for a winter bike then yes, as long as you are aware of the downsides.
 
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Dan77

Well-Known Member
Location
Worcester
While I'm sure Di2 is good personally I would stay away from it. I don't think you're missing out.

I know a number of people who've experienced the usual issue of a flat battery halfway through a ride. Friends who haven't set out because the battery was flat in the morning. Yes, probably 99% user error but not always.

I did consider it last autumn for my new bike. While I was deciding on the spec a friend began to experience charging problems. Basically she frequently found the battery flat or undercharged. This was traced and a faulty battery replaced under warranty. Our local LBS doesn't stock batteries - do any? - and she was off the road for ten days with no bike while waiting for the replacement. Unacceptable to me. That was it Di2 immediately off my list.

Same friend also reports there is no charging indicator. No little light to show charging is ongoing or complete. Bad design in my view.

On the other hand if I get a shifting problem I drop by my LBS on a ride. Pop in, explain the problem, 10-20 minutes later it will be fixed, coffee included. I know there are lots of happy users but if Di2 goes badly wrong it can put you off the road for days and days.
Absolutely love my Di2. Sure it's a bit of a luxury but it's really noticeable.

I find it astonishing that people let their batteries run out. They last about 3 months between charges and give you a warning. I also fitted the wireless module and connected it to my Garmin so I can see Di2 battery level, what gear I am in, etc. on the screen. Can also change Garmin screen from the hidden buttons on the tops rather than taking a hand off the bars. Could even use those to change gear if I wanted but haven't got it set up like that.
 

SheilaH

Guru
Just for clarity, charge duration depends on usage of gears, so very broadly mileage. A full charge will easily see 1000 miles.
 

russ.will

Slimboy Fat
Location
The Fen Edge
I love my Di2 but if it was a choice between Di2 and top drawer wheels for a given frame, I'd pick the wheels.

I have also Rival 22, Campag Veloce, 105 and Sora bikes in the stable and never curse not having Di2 when I'm riding them. Well, maybe Sora a bit.

That said, once I set up semi-sequential shifting via the E-TUBE app, I saw the future. Not the fully sequential mode - way too much clattering and noise. When you shift between the front rings, it automatically shifts the rear to deliver the nearest ratio to the one you were in on the other ring.

Luxury? Yes, but you never, ever fluff a shift at the bottom of a climb or grind to a halt mid-climb because of a bungled shift.

I'd still vote for £1k of wheels over £1k of electronics though.

PS. 'Ere in The Fens it's six months between charges, but paranoia means I do it every four. You only forget once...
 
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SheilaH

Guru
Damn good shout about the wheels.

Price difference on a new bike between mech and di2 is about a grand. Unless you are buying an £8k machine with good stock wheels that di2 £1k would give more appreciable benefits on a decent set of wheels, no question.
 
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Dan77

Well-Known Member
Location
Worcester
Damn good shout about the wheels.

Price difference on a new bike between mech and di2 is about a grand. Unless you are buying an £8k machine with good stock wheels that di2 £1k would give more appreciable benefits on a decent set of wheels, no question.
Depends what you want out of your rides. High end wheels will have more effect on speed but if you're not racing then it's not all about speed for everyone.

Less adjustment with Di2. Can easily index while riding. Smooth shifts. Easy to shift on a climb. Quicker, cleaner shifts. No snapped gear cables to thread through a downtube. Then there is the synchro shift and wireless benefits with linking your gears to head unit and hidden buttons on hoods. I'd definitely go for the Di2 and mid range wheels (I did) to suit my riding and what I want out of it.
 

SheilaH

Guru
There is more to decent wheels than speed, Dan. Cornering, descending, accelerating climbing, sprinting.
As said before, I'd take wheels over Di2 anyday, but what works for you works for you and it should all get thrown into the mix.
 
OP
dave147

dave147

Well-Known Member
Whooo thanks for all the replys lot to take in

I am not loaded by any means. I would have it for an all year round bike. I just want the g beat I can get really. And always fancied one
There is a ribble out let at the mail box in bham which isn’t far for me so if it’s still open when we are allowed out have a look.
 
OP
dave147

dave147

Well-Known Member
Other options would be get a di2 frame. And get shifters bat cables front and rear meks and take all the other components from my defy bike
 
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