Shimano 6502 Flight Deck - Weird problem



Stanners77

New Member
Aug 3, 2004
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Any hints with this one???

(I have 10spd Ultegra, btw)

Just installed everything and ...

LH lever - Everthing works fine (mode button and chainring display)

RH lever - Mode button works fine BUT cog display does not work!!! I shift up and down like buggery but the display just stays on the smallest cog.

No, I did NOT:

- Enter the wrong number of teeth on any of the cogs
- Enter '222' for Rapid Rise derailleur instead of '111' for normal

My conclusion: Since the mode button works, it's not obviously the wire between the Head Unit and the interface in the lever, so something's going astray between the level and the interface on the lever, yes?

Is it likely to be a just dodgy lever or has anyone else experienced this/have any other theories???

Many thanks,

Stanners
 
Stanners77 said:
Any hints with this one???

(I have 10spd Ultegra, btw)

Just installed everything and ...

LH lever - Everthing works fine (mode button and chainring display)

RH lever - Mode button works fine BUT cog display does not work!!! I shift up and down like buggery but the display just stays on the smallest cog.

No, I did NOT:

- Enter the wrong number of teeth on any of the cogs
- Enter '222' for Rapid Rise derailleur instead of '111' for normal

My conclusion: Since the mode button works, it's not obviously the wire between the Head Unit and the interface in the lever, so something's going astray between the level and the interface on the lever, yes?

Is it likely to be a just dodgy lever or has anyone else experienced this/have any other theories???

Many thanks,

Stanners
First, is this unit brand new?

If not, has it ever worked properly?

If new, then your problem is most likely where the cable from the computer head bracket attaches into the hand control. Open up that connection and clean the connections on both sides with a little alcohol on a cotton swap. Those contacts must be clean. If this does not solve your problem, the next step is to install the little shims that should have come with the mounting kit. These are just tiny little pieces of plastic that peel off a piece of paper in the kit. They attach to the back of the flex strip connector in the hand control and just serve to put a little more pressure on the connection between the two cable ends. BTW, those two cable ends have got to be aligned exactly for everything to work correctly.

Lots of people have had this problem and either cleaning the contacts (fingers off!!!) or installing the shims almost always seems to fix the problem.

Part of that little flex circuit strip in the hand control goes to a circular resistor divider network at the other end (the business end of the shifter) and returns different voltages back to the computer (well, actually to an A/D circuit that's in the computer head mounting bracket). There is a different voltage returned for each different gear and that's how the computer determines what gear to display. Always keep in mind that there is no feedback in this system and the rear derailleur has to be set up correctly. The computer only knows what the hand control is doing. I have occasionally slipped (with my fingers) when shifting up and the computer thinks the shift was made, but there was not acutally enough tension increase on the cable to perform the shift. In this case, your position indication will be off by one. But, this always seems to correct itself once you shift the the high gear (little sprocket) on the RD. All things considered, this is a great system and is very reliable. The weak link is always going to be where the two cables are connected. A press fit for two flat cables is about as tenuous electrical connection as you can make - but, it usually works.

Please let us know how you make out. Good luck!
 
Thanks a bunch for that, plenty of things for me to try!

Yes, the unit is brand new and the problem has always existed.

I'll try all your suggestions and report back!

Cheers,

Stanners
 
fish156 said:
First, is this unit brand new?

If not, has it ever worked properly?

If new, then your problem is most likely where the cable from the computer head bracket attaches into the hand control. Open up that connection and clean the connections on both sides with a little alcohol on a cotton swap. Those contacts must be clean. If this does not solve your problem, the next step is to install the little shims that should have come with the mounting kit. These are just tiny little pieces of plastic that peel off a piece of paper in the kit. They attach to the back of the flex strip connector in the hand control and just serve to put a little more pressure on the connection between the two cable ends. BTW, those two cable ends have got to be aligned exactly for everything to work correctly.

Lots of people have had this problem and either cleaning the contacts (fingers off!!!) or installing the shims almost always seems to fix the problem.

Part of that little flex circuit strip in the hand control goes to a circular resistor divider network at the other end (the business end of the shifter) and returns different voltages back to the computer (well, actually to an A/D circuit that's in the computer head mounting bracket). There is a different voltage returned for each different gear and that's how the computer determines what gear to display. Always keep in mind that there is no feedback in this system and the rear derailleur has to be set up correctly. The computer only knows what the hand control is doing. I have occasionally slipped (with my fingers) when shifting up and the computer thinks the shift was made, but there was not acutally enough tension increase on the cable to perform the shift. In this case, your position indication will be off by one. But, this always seems to correct itself once you shift the the high gear (little sprocket) on the RD. All things considered, this is a great system and is very reliable. The weak link is always going to be where the two cables are connected. A press fit for two flat cables is about as tenuous electrical connection as you can make - but, it usually works.

Please let us know how you make out. Good luck!
Alas, no luck!

I've cleaned the contacts in both the shifter and the head unit and no change.

The only other thing worth mentioning is that after I repositioned the connection in the lever and pushed the MODE button, I noticed the RD cog display jumped from the 11 cog (when it had always stayed) right up onto the 16 (where it now resides and hasn't moved since) ... weird, like I said, it jumped 5 cogs, not from a gear shift but from pushing the mode button ...

This would seem to indicate the connection is still not right but I've repositioned it about 5 times now (and lifted the plate spring on the circuit up a little, as the manual suggests AND reset the whole head unit AGAIN) - still locked on 16 cog...

Dodgy Flight Deck or dodgy shifter? You would have no way of knowing I guess. Not really sure where to go from here but I just want to say that I really appreciated the time you took to post such a decent response...

Ciao,

Stanners
 
Did you try the shims? You did not mention that. That's a known fix for connection problems.

Also, did you buy the components at an LBS? If so, maybe you can get them to troubleshoot for you. It's either the computer head, the mounting bracket and cable assy, or the brifter. It would be great if you had a friend that has the same set up.
Then you could swap out the three assemblies.



-- f
 
Stanners77 said:
Any hints with this one???

(I have 10spd Ultegra, btw)

Just installed everything and ...

LH lever - Everthing works fine (mode button and chainring display)

RH lever - Mode button works fine BUT cog display does not work!!! I shift up and down like buggery but the display just stays on the smallest cog.

No, I did NOT:

- Enter the wrong number of teeth on any of the cogs
- Enter '222' for Rapid Rise derailleur instead of '111' for normal

My conclusion: Since the mode button works, it's not obviously the wire between the Head Unit and the interface in the lever, so something's going astray between the level and the interface on the lever, yes?

Is it likely to be a just dodgy lever or has anyone else experienced this/have any other theories???

Many thanks,

Stanners

Reset and do it again. I had a heck of a time with mine,hours and couldnt get past the cogs part. Friend took it and did the whole thing in 5 minutes.
 
One additional thought is to clean the contacts between the computer head and the mounting bracket. These need to be clean, too. Cotton swab and alcohol for this bit.

I agree with letting someone else take a crack at it. It's very easy to keep making the same mistake. These problems tend to have simple solutions (i.e. Occam's Razor).
 
The shims are available in case the mode button isn't making good contact when you push with your thumb knuckle. The gear indicator is independent of the mode button and I haven't found anyone who knows how it really works - it could be a strain gauge or it could be a position sensor of some sort - but futzing with the shims probably won't help. You'd probably have better luck by checking and cleaning the contacts on the back of the little circuit board that installs in the hood. Or it could be toast and a warranty issue.

My conclusion: Since the mode button works, it's not obviously the wire between the Head Unit and the interface in the lever, so something's going astray between the level and the interface on the lever, yes?

Yup.
 
DiabloScott said:
The shims are available in case the mode button isn't making good contact when you push with your thumb knuckle. The gear indicator is independent of the mode button and I haven't found anyone who knows how it really works - it could be a strain gauge or it could be a position sensor of some sort - but futzing with the shims probably won't help. You'd probably have better luck by checking and cleaning the contacts on the back of the little circuit board that installs in the hood. Or it could be toast and a warranty issue.

My conclusion: Since the mode button works, it's not obviously the wire between the Head Unit and the interface in the lever, so something's going astray between the level and the interface on the lever, yes?

Yup.
Sorry to disagree but the shims ARE for gear indicator problems. I will quote directly from pg 23 of the user manual:

"USING THE STICKER-
If the gear indicator (bar) does not display correctly, attach accessory sticker in the position shown in the illustration".

The sticker/shim goes underneath the flex circuit connector end and is provided to increase the connection pressure between the connector end and the mating end of the cable that goes to the computer head mounting bracket. By installing the shim you create a better connection when you install the cover plate (which presses the two connector ends together). So, the shim affects ALL signals that are sensed by the computer. The mode switch supplies an ON/OFF signal (absense of voltage/presense of voltage) and the gear positions are determined by different voltage levels (provided by a circular voltage divider network in the brifter) which get interpreted by an A/D converter. The resulting code gets passed on to the microcontroller in the computer head. That's how it works.

Any conclusion that the cable is good just because the mode button works is not justified. You have multiple connections in the connector. Only one of them is for the mode button. As I recall, the other three are ground, a voltage reference, and the "position" voltage. It's not just "a wire" between the hand control and the computer head mounting bracket. It's a four conductor cable and the problem under discussion is likely that one conductor is not making a good connection. I have fixed many of these problems and it has been an issue of making good contacts for all of the contacts in every single case.
 
fish156 said:
Sorry to disagree but the shims ARE for gear indicator problems. I will quote directly from pg 23 of the user manual:

"USING THE STICKER-
If the gear indicator (bar) does not display correctly, attach accessory sticker in the position shown in the illustration".

The sticker/shim goes underneath the flex circuit connector end and is provided to increase the connection pressure between the connector end and the mating end of the cable that goes to the computer head mounting bracket. By installing the shim you create a better connection when you install the cover plate (which presses the two connector ends together). So, the shim affects ALL signals that are sensed by the computer. The mode switch supplies an ON/OFF signal (absense of voltage/presense of voltage) and the gear positions are determined by different voltage levels (provided by a circular voltage divider network in the brifter) which get interpreted by an A/D converter. The resulting code gets passed on to the microcontroller in the computer head. That's how it works.

Any conclusion that the cable is good just because the mode button works is not justified. You have multiple connections in the connector. Only one of them is for the mode button. As I recall, the other three are ground, a voltage reference, and the "position" voltage. It's not just "a wire" between the hand control and the computer head mounting bracket. It's a four conductor cable and the problem under discussion is likely that one conductor is not making a good connection. I have fixed many of these problems and it has been an issue of making good contacts for all of the contacts in every single case.
Thanks again for your input, Fish. RE the shims, my manual makes no mention of them at all, let alone something specific on page 23 ... did my Australian version get short changed???

"USING THE STICKER-
If the gear indicator (bar) does not display correctly, attach accessory sticker in the position shown in the illustration" ... This appears nowhere in my manual!

I don't have any such illustrations ... When you say "The sticker/shim goes underneath the flex circuit connector end ", do you mean to pop out the ciruit in the lever (which is housed in a little squarish rubber piece and place the shim behind that?

I'd be super grateful is you could send pic to [email protected] or a post a link to a pic of this diagram.

Thanks again, mate...

Merry Xmas!
 
After all that reading - this is going to seem very anti-climatic.

If the dang thing has never worked properly, it's probably defective. Just exchange it and be done. Shimano's warranty isn't the hottest thing going, so you may as well ditch the flaky part while you have a chance.

I have 9spd D/A and my Left shifter did the same when it was only a few months old (this was quite a while ago). It worked when brand spanking new, but got flaky right away, and then was never right…



Wiring up FD isn’t rocket science, it’s either right and it works, or somehow you @ssed it up and it doesn’t. If your IQ is over 73 getting it wrong is just about impossible unless of course you did the work once you where near the end of a 5th of Jack. If the situations above don’t describe your situation, have the shifter exchanged.



If you are nice they’ll let you ride on the defective unit until the replacement comes, otherwise the Shimano-Warranty-Nazi’s will want the bad unit in hand prior to shipping out the new unit.

HR
 
Hookyrider said:
After all that reading - this is going to seem very anti-climatic.

If the dang thing has never worked properly, it's probably defective. Just exchange it and be done. Shimano's warranty isn't the hottest thing going, so you may as well ditch the flaky part while you have a chance.

I have 9spd D/A and my Left shifter did the same when it was only a few months old (this was quite a while ago). It worked when brand spanking new, but got flaky right away, and then was never right…



Wiring up FD isn’t rocket science, it’s either right and it works, or somehow you @ssed it up and it doesn’t. If your IQ is over 73 getting it wrong is just about impossible unless of course you did the work once you where near the end of a 5th of Jack. If the situations above don’t describe your situation, have the shifter exchanged.



If you are nice they’ll let you ride on the defective unit until the replacement comes, otherwise the Shimano-Warranty-Nazi’s will want the bad unit in hand prior to shipping out the new unit.

HR

3 year warr on DA.
 
Stanners77 said:
Thanks again for your input, Fish. RE the shims, my manual makes no mention of them at all, let alone something specific on page 23 ... did my Australian version get short changed???

"USING THE STICKER-
If the gear indicator (bar) does not display correctly, attach accessory sticker in the position shown in the illustration" ... This appears nowhere in my manual!

I don't have any such illustrations ... When you say "The sticker/shim goes underneath the flex circuit connector end ", do you mean to pop out the ciruit in the lever (which is housed in a little squarish rubber piece and place the shim behind that?

I'd be super grateful is you could send pic to [email protected] or a post a link to a pic of this diagram.

Thanks again, mate...

Merry Xmas!
Whoops, I made a little goof here. The picture in question is actually on page 24. Sorry about that. Anyway, I did shoot it and attached it. Sorry about the picture quality, but I am a little rushed today with the holiday and all. Hopefully, this will solve your problem.

FWIW, every single problem I have ever seen with these Flight Deck/STI setups has been solved by fixing this connection problem. Never seen a bad computer head, mounting kit, or brifter. Be patient, make sure you clean (and keep them clean) the connector contacts on both sides, use the shim (use two if you must), and go through the set-up proceedure carefully.
Good luck!

Merry Christmas to you and all the cyclingforum members ;-)

Cheers,
f
 
It's been a while, but... PROBLEM SOLVED!!!

Dodgy lever, Shimano replaced it under warranty, Flight Deck works perfectly now!!!

FYI, the defining moment came when it tested both the lever and the wiring kit with a voltmeter - lever was dead as a dodo...

Thanks again to everyone for their input.

Cheers,

Stanners
 
Stanners77 said:
It's been a while, but... PROBLEM SOLVED!!!

Dodgy lever, Shimano replaced it under warranty, Flight Deck works perfectly now!!!

FYI, the defining moment came when it tested both the lever and the wiring kit with a voltmeter - lever was dead as a dodo...

Thanks again to everyone for their input.

Cheers,

Stanners
Hey, that's great you got it going. Any chance you could elaborate on how you determined the lever was dead by using a voltmeter? Did you test the lever by itself, or hooked up to the computer and wiring harness?

Thanks,
Bill