Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Shifting along nicely

The updates are coming thick and fast now, this one is all about this sexy little beast;

Which is a Jtek Bar End Shifter for Alfine 8 Speed Hubs.

It is a pretty nicely made bit of kit, the engineer in me could not resist pulling it apart to see what the gubbins looked like - basically it is all about two hefty sprung detent balls hooking into the correctly spaced detents. Nice and simple.

Now I had already decided that I would try and mount this right by my thumb at the end of the bars, so this meant I needed to make up a bracket to hold it in the right place. I pillaged my parts bin and came up with this quick and dirty beast;

Mmmmm, ugly
Beautified with a coat of MattyB and poorly wrapped bar tape
Rather less intrusive than the original I think

So that was fine, but one issue remained, which was the fact that the shifter has no provision for adjusting the cable length. I looked at the situation on the shifter, and then at the hub, and decided a mod at the hub end would be the least invasive. I then hacked up an old Shimano brake lever which had the adjustment detail I wanted, and after a short while I had it filed to approximately the right shape to fit in the cable stop on the hub;

A poor shadow of Bob's filing skills, but fit for purpose
I removed the wee metal tab and replaced it with my bit of engineering art.
So this all looked like it was going to work pretty well, and in reality it did. My ride this morning was a real pleasure, and while the position of the lever is not quite right, it needs to be slightly lower and further forward, it is a pretty good effort all up. The shifting was easy and surprisingly positive - it actually feels better than the original shifter, certainly easier to bang up 3 gears at a time.

I will soon make a far sexier version of the mount now I have proven the concept... I will try and minimise the amount of space taken up by the bracket as it is slightly too intrusive at the moment, not too bad at all, just not as good as it can be.

Awesomely, my stem tubing has turned up as well, so I can alienate my lovely wife even more now....

No comments:

Post a Comment