Flight Deck



Atl_Gatr

New Member
Dec 31, 2009
2
0
0
Ive recently purchased a bike with flight deck compatible brake/shift levers. The bike has a cateye comp/cadence computer and I cannot seem to get the buttons on the hubs to change computer functions. Is the cateye flight-deck compatible or am I going to have to change computers? Thanks for all the info and help.

Wes
 

alienator

Well-Known Member
Jun 10, 2004
12,596
310
0
Atl_Gatr said:
Ive recently purchased a bike with flight deck compatible brake/shift levers. The bike has a cateye comp/cadence computer and I cannot seem to get the buttons on the hubs to change computer functions. Is the cateye flight-deck compatible or am I going to have to change computers? Thanks for all the info and help.

Wes

Nope. The Cateye won't work. You'll need a Flight Deck, from Shimano, if you want to use the buttons on the shifters.
 

kdelong

Well-Known Member
Dec 14, 2006
3,477
134
48
You might want to keep your Cateye with cadence as this gives you your actual cadence. The Shimano Flight Deck cadence is a simulated cadence figured from your wheel diameter, speed, and gear ratio. There is no cadence pickup. Therefore, when I am coasting, the cadence function still shows a cadence. I have done some descents where my "cadence" has topped 200 rpm and the pedals did not turn all the way down.
 

alienator

Well-Known Member
Jun 10, 2004
12,596
310
0
I second what he said. In addition to the wonky cadence calculation, getting a Flight Deck would mean more money spent for nothing really gained. Cateye computer are known for being reliable and hardy.
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
dbackmtg said:
I've heard a lot of negative comments on Flight deck computers.

Pretty complicated(and expensive) answer to a pretty simple question. Biggest problem I see is after replacing all the less expensive items of the system, like the head, wiring harness, if it still doesn't work, it 'may' be the lever...and that's a pain, to lose the lever for a warranty for the 2 weeks or so to send it in.
 

alfeng

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2005
6,723
254
63
Atl_Gatr said:
Ive recently purchased a bike with flight deck compatible brake/shift levers. The bike has a cateye comp/cadence computer and I cannot seem to get the buttons on the hubs to change computer functions. Is the cateye flight-deck compatible or am I going to have to change computers? Thanks for all the info and help.
FYI. The FlightDeck computer is made by Cateye ...

Most of the FlightDeck harnesses are designed to be used with a specific shifter body ... that is both an advantage & disadvantage. There is also a Universal harness which subsequently fails to provide cadence + some other dubious features like indicating which cog or chainwheel the chain is on.

It's not clear to me that the recent (as of a couple of years ago) FlightDeck does anything more than the older FlightDecks other than include a 10th on-screen indicator & associated calculations.

Electronic technology has evolved since the FlightDeck was first introduced, and some of the OTHER Cateye + other brand computers have many more features which some people may find to be useful -- HR & altimeter are two functions (which may not be of interest to you) which I believe some computers are capable of indicating which I don't think the current FlightDeck includes, yet.

If you have more than one bike which uses Shimano shifters, then the advantage of the FlightDeck is that you will only need to buy as many additional harnesses as you have additional bikes (presuming they have the same tire size -- you can program the computer head for two different tire sizes).

If your current computer already provides all the features you want to use, then there probably isn't any reason to trouble yourself with changing to a FlightDeck unless you are currently toggling between the modes-or-functions to the extent that you feel having the control buttons integrated in the handles of the bike's shifters will be make the process easier OR if you find that strapping the control buttons on your handlebars OR wrapping the handlebars with the control buttons already strapped to the bars is tedious.

The price of a FlightDeck doesn't seem that different than it was about 10 years ago ... so, other than having integrated buttons (if you have the correct harness) & some dubious functions, its cost probably can't be considered competitive with the cost of a 'plain' Cateye computer.

BTW. I still use FlightDeck computer heads even though I no longer use Shimano shifters ... I found that I only used the minimal number of functions ... and so, I do not find using the Universal FlightDeck harnesses to be a handicap.
 

alfeng

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2005
6,723
254
63
Pretty complicated(and expensive) answer to a pretty simple question.
BUT, not quite as complicated or as expensive as the ErgoBrain computer (which is also made by Cateye) which was designed to be used with the Campagnolo ErgoPower shifters.
 

alfeng

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2005
6,723
254
63
dbackmtg said:
I've heard a lot of negative comments on Flight deck computers.
The FlightDeck is less than perfect, but I think the limitations are due to the age of the specifications + what Cateye was capable of providing at the time.

IMO. The worst thing about the FlightDeck (which some people may not find to be a problem) is the lack of memory if/when the battery dies OR is removed for replacement -- all necessary data must be input, again ... at least on the older, 9-speed versions ... maybe, that was corrected with the 10-speed FlightDeck computer heads.

With the 9-speed FlightDeck computer heads (e.g., 6500), the low battery indicator gives the rider about 3-minutes notice before dying!

Most-if-not-all Cateye computers which were subsequently designed probably maintain the data (e.g., the Campagnolo ErgoBrain does not have to be reprogrammed after changing the battery).
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
alfeng said:
BUT, not quite as complicated or as expensive as the ErgoBrain computer (which is also made by Cateye) which was designed to be used with the Campagnolo ErgoPower shifters.

BOTH are expensive answers to a simple question. At least ERGO brain was hardwired for cadence unlike fright decks 'virtual' cadence. Gone for 2009, ERGO brain, anyway.
 

alienator

Well-Known Member
Jun 10, 2004
12,596
310
0
BOTH are expensive answers to a simple question. At least ERGO brain was hardwired for cadence unlike fright decks 'virtual' cadence. Gone for 2009, ERGO brain, anyway.

What as the thinking behind Shimano's "virtual cadence?" What a completely asinine method for calculating cadence.
 

kdelong

Well-Known Member
Dec 14, 2006
3,477
134
48
I have one, the 9-speed model. It came with a second hand bike that I bought and it has worked flawlessly. The low battery indicator came on and stayed on for several hours until I changed the battery. Concerning the virtual cadence, I don't use it for any purpose other than just to see how far my cadence has dropped off on an ascent. It is worthless for any real training. But it looks good and I don't have to strain my neck to see what rear cog I am running on, but I do anyway....old habit and this is the only bike that I have equipped with Shimano brifters.
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
alienator said:
What as the thinking behind Shimano's "virtual cadence?" What a completely asinine method for calculating cadence.

I think so they could make it 'wireless'. Wire to the front speed sensor but nothing to the crank.
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
kdelong said:
I have one, the 9-speed model. It came with a second hand bike that I bought and it has worked flawlessly. The low battery indicator came on and stayed on for several hours until I changed the battery. Concerning the virtual cadence, I don't use it for any purpose other than just to see how far my cadence has dropped off on an ascent. It is worthless for any real training. But it looks good and I don't have to strain my neck to see what rear cog I am running on, but I do anyway....old habit and this is the only bike that I have equipped with Shimano brifters.

I look down at my DT shifter to tell what gear I am in.
 

kdelong

Well-Known Member
Dec 14, 2006
3,477
134
48
I look down at my DT shifter to tell what gear I am in.
That's easy with DT shifters, but the shift levers on my Shimano brifters are spring loaded to center, it looks the same regardless of what gear I am in. I can usually tell where I am by the resistance for given terrain but I guess that I like to check just to make sure, especially if I think I am in one gear but it feels like a higher gear, sort of like when you get a brake dragging or mud built up between the wheel and the chainstay on a MTB.
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
kdelong said:
That's easy with DT shifters, but the shift levers on my Shimano brifters are spring loaded to center, it looks the same regardless of what gear I am in. I can usually tell where I am by the resistance for given terrain but I guess that I like to check just to make sure, especially if I think I am in one gear but it feels like a higher gear, sort of like when you get a brake dragging or mud built up between the wheel and the chainstay on a MTB.

It was a joke son...................
 
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
8
0
kdelong said:
And what makes you think that my reply wasn't a little tongue in cheek?:D

I looked close but couldn't see the smile on your face.........ahh, the internet, what was Gore thinkin'??
 

Camilo

Member
Apr 5, 2007
391
6
18
kdelong said:
You might want to keep your Cateye with cadence as this gives you your actual cadence. The Shimano Flight Deck cadence is a simulated cadence figured from your wheel diameter, speed, and gear ratio. There is no cadence pickup. Therefore, when I am coasting, the cadence function still shows a cadence. I have done some descents where my "cadence" has topped 200 rpm and the pedals did not turn all the way down.

But what's wrong with that? Nothing. Surely it's not confusing to see a calculated cadence when you're not actually pedaling? In fact it could be considered better in that it will tell you what you'd better be prepared to pedal at when you quit coasting and start pedaling. If I see a reading of 150 when I'm coasting, I know I might as well keep coasting because pedaling is not going to help and might make me more unstable than just sitting in the drops in a stable, aero position.

It seems silly to me to have two computers on the bars just to replace a calculated cadence with the exact same cadence read out except "actual". Both are accurate.

My bias: the flight deck computer is one of the best innovations since I've been using computers (early-mid 90s). Buttons on hoods are great, easier and safer than buttons on the computer head.