Oh man, what a couple of days. So when I hooked up my Cateye button sets to my bike, I left the connection "box" at the end of the double wires (connected to - that's right - the 2 buttons). This connection box has (3) terminals that plug into the Cateye computer. I just soldered the (3) wires from my wiring harness (a positive wire for each button and a common ground wire). Part laziness on my part, part "I just want to get this thing wired up and start riding the bike". The whole purpose of my going over to Di2 was to quickly be able to switch between a road and a TT handlebar set. Ditching the Di2 levers for both builds put this idea at a standstill. So, the mission for the last several months has been to get some good connectors so that I could switch my handlebar sets back and forth.
A few weeks ago I purchased a few of the Di2 main cable harness extension kits - they will extend the length of the main cable that goes thru (or along) the down tube for connection to the front wiring harness. This is a 5 wire cable. Well, the goal for the TT setup was to have 4 different buttons for each derailleur, so I could have a common ground wire and a wire for each button. Sweet! And for the road setup, I wanted to get some climbing switches for the rear derailleur. Of course, the wires on my front wiring harness (left and right side) each have 4 wires - ground, 2 wires for the 2 buttons, and a blue wire that, well, I don't know what it does. So this weekend I just cut my shifter wires from the junction boxes - NO GOING BACK NOW!
After (no joking) more than 15 hours of work, my road setup is 100% complete. I have the connectors all wired up and the rear derailleur has 2 different sets of buttons. There was A LOT of agony in getting this thing finalized though - words don't explain the frustration I was faced with.
1. The Cateye wires - what I complete pain in the ass. Each wire has (2) wires inside - as you would expect. One was insulated and the other was a bare wire. So I (reasonably) assumed that the insulated wire was (+) and the bare wire was (-) for each wire. I soldered the (-) wires together and then put the (+) wires to the corresponding wires on my connectors. Nothing. Nothing at all. I tried so many configurations. Nothing. Unplug and plug in the battery - the green light comes on, so the battery was good. This went on for way too long. Then, I got out my wire cutters and disected the Cateye junction box - since I was smart enough to make a diagram as to which color wire was connected to each terminal. Absolutely NO logic to this, but the (2) bare wires were suppose to be connected, but they were to be soldered to one of the (+) wires on the harness. Then one insulated wire went to the (-) wire on the harness and the other insulated one went to the other (+) wire on the harness. This still makes absolutely no sense to me. But it works.
2. My climbing buttons are the Shimano Flightdeck ones. I stripped the insulation hoping to find (3) insulated wires. So my surprise, there were (3) BARE wires. No insulation. WTF?!?!?! After a few phone calls and no answers I finally got Madcow on the phone and he explained to me that the (2) wires that were colored (one red, the other blue) had each strand of the stranded wires individually insulated. The insulation had to be burned off. Wow. Crazy. So I got out a lighter and burned away. These (3) wires connected as I expected and all was right in the world.
Then the fun part was getting everything together. And believe me, getting (2) sets of buttons that are different to splice into a set of wires at the back of the connector was a pain in the ass. Planning out the shrink-tubing for each stage was a nightmare and when I had everything done besides the last wire I realized that I hadn't pre-planned on the outer shrink-tubing correctly. This was after 6 hours (during my work day today) spent on this project. Fuck it - I broke out the electrical tape. This whole section is under the bar-tape anyways. I'll do it proper when I have the time.
Of course, the absolute best part of all this? When I was done I realized that I left my chain at home in the chain cleaner - so I couldn't even go for a ride!!!!!
Pics coming soon....
Have you ever wondered if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking?