Last installment in my 'Ferrari for Ford Fiesta money' EPS Colnalgo build. Just a bit of unfinished business to a attend to , namely setting up the EPS gear system.There is only one set screw to adjust,
the one on the rear mech to stop gear running over the biggest sprocket into the spokes , very important to get this right , or the first time you put it into first gear in anger there'll be an explosion of carbon fibre, probably followed by the sound of a grown man crying.I actually temporarily put the rear mech into' ride home' mode so I could manually push the the mech up onto first gear and totally make sure it didn't hit the spokes. The EPS system is not 'plug and play' so you have to go into the slightly scary world, Campag call 'Zero Setting' . Best advise here is to follow the Campag tutorial video , you really have to follow it exactly , I messed up first time and ended up with a rear gear that made a lot of noise put didn't move , no drama, just shut the system off and restart after a minute , got it right the second time and it's been perfect since.
Back in the days when I used to race ( late 70t's to early 90t's ) I was Mr early adopter , one of first riders to use a 979 , Look pedals, Shimano STI etc , as I've got older I've become more of a Mr begrudgingly adopter , so as well as this being my first bike with electric gears , it's also my first carbon rig , unless you include a brief affair with a scarily wobbly ALAN bonded carbon tube horror . I've also fitted contemporary saddle and bars, and not stuff from the 90t's.
What's it ride like ?, well awesome it's a Colnalgo (obvs) but being more subjective it's much stiffer than the steel frames that I'm more used to riding , even though I don't put out anything like the power I used too , I can instantly feel the frames stiffness when I get out the saddle. If anything I found it just a little bit too stiff , so I replaced the 31.6mm seat post for a 27.2 mm carbon post , using a shim , slightly surprisingly this did add just enough give and really did improve the ride.
So , EPS worth the all the effort ? Well I'm still getting used to it , but yes they're amazing , especially the front mech, totally effortless and the self trimming is just great , no matter how sorted a mechanical front mech you have it could never compare. TBH there's less in it with the rear mech , but there are times when the speed and total accuracy of EPS comes into it's own. A real life test of this is Carbone hill , one of the ' 3 ugly sisters' around Newgate Street Herts , a fast descent into a dip followed by a sharp incline , this is where you need to make several quick a decisive gear changes to keep the momentum going , this can be tricky with mechanical gears , especially if you've already done 4 hours and your a bit fucked! (trust me on this) this is when EPS really proves it's worth , it really makes a difference perfect , quick changes even under load.