Installing Shimano Ultegra shifters

At the kayaking club, I remember Beth saying before she was putting a bike together for a triathlon in the pipeline.  This is the kind of thing some kayakers do.  Excellent stuff and I have blogged before about kayakers having good all-round fitness and strength.

Beth went on to explain she has indeed put a bike together herself but has run into problems getting the front mech to work.  Everything else works and just needs a bit of fine tuning and bedding-in.

Checking out Beth's Lynskey

Checking out Beth’s Lynskey

“Sure” I instantly said, not knowing what kind of bike Beth had.  My worst fears were that she had thrown some BSO together which was going to be a heap of junk and ready to be thrown into the canal.  But then, neither Beth, any of the kayakers or myself could possibly dream of doing such an anti-social thing.

Beth duly produced her bike and I must say I was really impressed at what she’d got and that she’s built it herself (building your own bike can be both risky and also satisfying).  She has spent some time gathering the various components from eBay and the like to put together a very respectable and cost effective bicycle.  It is based around a Lynskey frame, with carbon fibre forks.  It is a beautifully made frame with a superb finish.  Lynskey make their frames using titanium, a high performing and durable metal.  The wheelset is, from memory, Mavics and she’s wisely invested in an Ultegra groupset.  I pressed down on the pedal to see how much the frame flexed.  There was a little flex there, certainly not rock solid it seemed.  This means the frame should contribute to the overall comfort of the bicycle and ensure it’s not tiring to ride as the road surfaces are variable.

So far Beth is delighted with it and it certainly looks the business.  The snag is the front mech isn’t working and on closer inspection it appeared to be a cable routing issue (having not been tempted with the electronic version).  Ultegra is certainly nice kit and with an 11 speed cassette she’s got contemporary equipment.

Really sorry Beth I couldn’t sort it for you last night.  Installing Shimano Ultegra shifters is straightforward according to the above YouTube.  Take a look and you’ll see the correct routing for the gear cable, easy when you know how.  While I’m blogging about this, the Ultegra shifters are a pleasure to use and are, in my view, well designed from an ergonomic point of view.  Considering you’ll be riding for many hours, resting your hands on the lever hoods in the right way can have an impact on your comfort and performance.  With this in mind, make sure you clock the spacers which can be inserted above the levers: these are useful if the finger reach required needs to come in a bit. Experimenting with the position of the contact points (your hands, butt and feet) will be worthwhile and something you shouldn’t rush.

Installing Shimano Tiagra shifters


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