30 Jan 2016

30th January 2015 WT Roadlink.

Saturday 30th 43F, 6C, windy, overcast, rain. A damp morning, clearing later, winds reducing, allegedly.

Going back to the Wolf Tooth "Roadlink" they may just have made my ratio changing lever look like complete idiocy! If an Ultegra long cage RD can run a 40t rear sprocket then so [surely] can my Athena 11 speed RD mange a 36t? It had no problems with a 32t sprocket but the pulley cage could not clear the 36t. The Ultegra could also manage a 32t but gear changes were not so precise using the 11Sp Campag levers.

Of course the Campag Athena rear derailleur perfectly matches the pull ratio of the pre-2016 Campag Chorus Ergo levers. No pull ratio conversion required. It just seems too good to be true but I can probably rid myself of all my silly contraptions and just add a Roadlink to the Trykit's gear hanger. Then the Athena 11 speed RD can be hung from that. I have just ordered the Roadlink from Bike24 in Germany and will [obviously] discuss it in far more detail when it arrives. The vital trick with their clever links is the cranked design to bring the RD to the same lateral position but to alter its position in the vertical or rearward dimensions. This would be very difficult to achieve using a hammer to bend metal technology. The length does not allow enough room for the cranking to clear the threaded holes.

RoadLink – wolftoothcomponents.com
RoadLink Tech Page – wolftoothcomponents.com
RoadLink Installation Instructions – wolftoothcomponents.com

Emails still not working. Sunshine late morning. Going out after lunch for [probably] a short ride. Only 7 miles. The hedge cutter chap is amazingly productive. Many field and roadside hedges have been chopped right and laid out neatly. With the gentle elevations of the Danish countryside it has a more marked effect on the landscape that you might imagine.

Indexing was all over the place on the bottom 3 gears with the new pulleys. The skewed angles of the gear cable entry and exit can be seen in this "up-skirt" image. Such extreme cable angles must alter the pull ratios and cause flexure in the swinging lever. Which is almost bound to affect the indexing.

This image is form the previous iteration when I was still using cable clamps on the arm. Though the new design using rubber pulleys the cable angles are no better and may even be worse. Sorry about the farmer's mud in this shot! Thank goodness for R931 stainless steel trike frames! BTW: The O-rings and zip-ties are holding the cadence sensor in place.

Sunday 31st 36F, 2C, rather cloudy and windy. Occasional wintry showers and quite strong gusts [30+mph] expected again today. I have my inbox email service back again but have lost 350 messages prior to the disruption. I am still hoping "they" can recover them for me when they return to work on Monday.

Browsing for reviews and videos about Wolf Tooth Links have kept me amused all morning as rain, sleet and snow have fallen at intervals.

I'm really looking forward to trying the Roadlink with the Athena 11sp rear derailleur. It has been good fun playing with pull-ratio changing levers and turning ratio changing pulleys but they could soon be completely obsolete. Or so I hope.

I'd really like to get rid of all the extra "junk" my pull-ratio experiments have demanded. Though I hope I can still use the XTM8000 for its valuable, wide ratio geometry and chain clutch mechanism. To use this RD properly I really need to have much more space around the top rear of the derailleur. So that it can pivot freely without the cable entry arm and cable itself, binding on the trike axle reinforcement loops. The 11sp Goatlink may offer me just the extra freedom I need. Or the Roadlink might work simply by lowering the RD's hanger point. Even with the intervening ratio lever, the M8000 feels superbly light on the Ergo levers compared with my 11sp road RDs. Which is slightly odd because the lateral movement, per click, must be the same to achieve the correct sprocket pitch indexing.

Late morning was a little brighter but too late to go out before lunch. After that it all went badly downhill with long, darker periods and snow showers. So yet another rest day.

 Click on any image for an enlargement.

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