A few weeks ago, I had a conversation with a client I have been working with for years. His current bike is an old-school Trek OCLV 5500 with Shimano 9100 Dura-Ace and Mavic Ksyrium SL wheels. He is comfortable on this bike, and it is in excellent condition because it has been well taken care of. He called me to discuss options about getting 34t gearing for the rear cassette (currently has a 28t). Because the Shimano Dura-Ace RD9100 SS rear derailleur is maxed out at 30t, it will be more complicated than just installing an 11-34t cassette and replacing the chain. He said that he isn't opposed to investing in an e-road bike if it makes sense. So I felt good that we had some options.
So, first, we explored what it would take to get into an e-road bike. Trek's entry-level is the Domane+ LT for $6k. With the 34t cassette, it has the gearing he wanted. This choice gets him onto a new bike with new e-bike technology. The second option, which was his initial request, was to upgrade to the new Shimano 9200 Dura-Ace 12 speed group. This involves jumping to Di2 from mechanical. Doing this would get him to where he wants to be with the gearing, but it will cost him somewhere in the range of $4k when it eventually becomes available. The third option was to replace the Dura-Ace RD9100 rear derailleur, cassette, and chain with Ultegra R8000 GS rear derailleur and an 11-34t cassette and chain. Doing this would be the most cost-effective and, in my option, the most practical course of action, costing him somewhere around $500.
The call ended with him saying that he felt that he had three solid options. We decided that the first step would be to go to the LBS and test ride a Domane+ LT or similar to see if an e-bike was even something he liked enough to get. If he liked it and wanted it, mission accomplished. He got what he wanted after making an educated decision. If he didn't like it or didn't think that it was worth dropping $6k, then he still had two good options.
It ends up that he sent me a text a week or two later that, after more thought, he wanted to go with the third option of swapping out the rear derailleur, cassette, and chain and be done with it. I said that his decision was practical and prudent.
This is an example of a tech call that RogueMechanic Support is all about. So, how does this work? It's simple. Just click the link here
, and it will take you to the RogueMechanic Support page. There you can choose either a video or phone call. Next, you select an available day and time, enter your contact information, what you want to discuss, and after payment, you will receive confirmation. The cost is only $30 for 15 minutes. So far, most calls have lasted only 15 mins. If, for some reason, I do not have the information that you need or I feel that I need to do more research, I will get back to you as soon as possible for no extra charge.