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Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters
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https://www.bikeradar.com/...-di2-wireless-51967/






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Last edited by: BryanD: Mar 21, 18 7:52
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Re: Shimano Patents Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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This is super interesting... One of the things I love about eTap is that the main brake lever does not move side-to-side. I hate that about mechanical when I am in the drops and want to lightly control brakes-- it is more difficult when the brake lever can squirt out sideways from my fingertips. The Di2 complaint I have heard is that riding with gloves and Di2 is very difficult. SRAM's eTap shifters are perfect in both accounts.

The Shimano patent seems to address the tactile challenges of the small Di2 buttons by reverting back to a little of the mechanical downside.

I bet Shimano could go hybrid wireless today with that invention. It seems like it could transmit shift commands into the system through the D-Fly. Or, they could create a more robust D-Fly optimized for high reliability. Before Shimano goes full wireless, they need to decide how riders will change shift modes, initiate microadjustments, and see status. (All the stuff the Junction A does.)

I wonder what really makes that patent special? eTap shifters have been out for a while. So, is this special because of the shift button movement action, the LED indicators, the haptic feature, the self-charging battery, something else?
Last edited by: exxxviii: Mar 21, 18 6:10
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Re: Shimano Patents Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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That seems like an awfully board patent. It seems to say that they want to claim a patent for any function that was previously done with a cable or wire, though I think they forgot the self-dimming headlights and tire pressure indicators.
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Re: Shimano Patents Wireless Shifters [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
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the drawings even look identical to an etap lever. odd.
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Re: Shimano Patents Wireless Shifters [grumpier.mike] [ In reply to ]
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grumpier.mike wrote:
That seems like an awfully board patent. It seems to say that they want to claim a patent for any function that was previously done with a cable or wire, though I think they forgot the self-dimming headlights and tire pressure indicators.

Of course it's broad...it's an application, not an actually granted patent :-/

Lazy reporting by Mr. Delaney.

That's not a "patented design". It's an application for a patent. There's a difference.



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Re: Shimano Patents Wireless Shifters [jkhayc] [ In reply to ]
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jkhayc wrote:
the drawings even look identical to an etap lever. odd.


Either BikeRadar posted the wrong picture or Shimano is blatently trolling SRAM. I hope it's the latter.
Last edited by: trail: Mar 21, 18 7:58
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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I'd love to see Shimano come out with a wireless system similar to eTAP. Competition is a good thing.

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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [brider] [ In reply to ]
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If they came out with a completely wireless TT shift system, then that would persuade me to finally move to electronic from my current mechanical system.

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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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Take all these patent applications with a grain of salt. It's a common tactic to claim WAY more than you can realistically get, and sometimes the application is intentionally obscure so as not to tip-off the competition. Other times, it's more of a legal placeholder than anything else until details are worked out. The claims will no doubt be whittled down through the review process.
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [mt2u77] [ In reply to ]
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Yep. Some of the stuff tech companies try to patent is funny. If it sounds like a good idea let's patent it!

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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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What might be sort of game-changing here is the idea of using piezo electric shifters. This means that the small mechanical movement of the shift lever triggers a switch but the tiny movement also generates a tiny pulse of electric current which powers the switch and, most important, the wireless shifter transmitter.

This can be a vast increase in reliability because it means that there needs to be only 1 battery for the whole wireless system (or 1 battery per derailleur, if the derailleurs each have independent batteries). Rather than, say, the current etap system which needs 4 batteries. Batteries short out and they seem to fail at the worst possible times, and a piezo electric system can be far simpler and it will always work, no batteries to constantly replace (etap uses disposable button batteries for the shifters, 1 for each shifter for drop bar shifters).

This is a known and tested technology, as one can right now easily buy one of many available wireless doorbell systems that use essentially the same tech, with the outdoor doorbell switch not needing an (external) power supply and also never needing batteries.

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Last edited by: DarkSpeedWorks: Mar 21, 18 10:32
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [DarkSpeedWorks] [ In reply to ]
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DarkSpeedWorks wrote:
What might be sort of game-changing here is the idea of using piezo electric shifters. This means that the small mechanical movement of the shift lever triggers a switch but the tiny movement also generates a tiny pulse of electric current which powers the switch and, most important, the wireless shifter transmitter.

This can be a vast increase in reliability because it means that there needs to be only 1 battery for the whole wireless system (or 1 battery per derailleur, if the derailleurs each have independent batteries). Rather than, say, the current etap system which needs 4 batteries. Batteries short out and they seem to fail at the worst possible times, and a piezo electric system can be far simpler and it will always work, no batteries to constantly replace (etap uses disposable button batteries for the shifters, 1 for each shifter for drop bar shifters).

This is a known and tested technology, as one can right now easily buy one of many available wireless doorbell systems that use essentially the same tech, with the outdoor doorbell switch not needing an (external) power supply and also never needing batteries.


True. That's still the problem with tt-etap which has wires and batteries on the cockpit, correct me if I'm wrong.
Buttons without batteries which get their electrical energy used to transmit signals out of the movement of the buttons, and batteries directly on the derailleurs as with etap would be the perfect system and I'm waiting for that (at the moment I've got campa eps which works well but is a pain to install).
Last edited by: longtrousers: Mar 21, 18 11:37
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [mt2u77] [ In reply to ]
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mt2u77 wrote:
Take all these patent applications with a grain of salt. It's a common tactic to claim WAY more than you can realistically get, and sometimes the application is intentionally obscure so as not to tip-off the competition. Other times, it's more of a legal placeholder than anything else until details are worked out. The claims will no doubt be whittled down through the review process.

Exactly. And that article is deceiving by saying “patented.” No. Shimano’s application has been filed and published, nothing more. The application is still being examined at the Patent Office and will likely change as it goes through that process.

Also, while I understand why this happens, non-patent people focus too much on the drawings. The real meat is in the claim language, where the invention is legally defined.
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [mt2u77] [ In reply to ]
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mt2u77 wrote:
Take all these patent applications with a grain of salt. It's a common tactic to claim WAY more than you can realistically get, and sometimes the application is intentionally obscure so as not to tip-off the competition. Other times, it's more of a legal placeholder than anything else until details are worked out. The claims will no doubt be whittled down through the review process.

This one is directed shifters for hydraulic brakes. Shimano earlier filed one for regular rim brakes. All except two claims rejected over a Sram application.

[/url]Things I find amusing about both applications: classic round bars FTW.

Jest aside, I could really use a wireless unit. One of my bikes doesn't have internal routing, so Di2 is currently out (I really don't want to mess with drilling a hole in titanium). I'd pay to equip that bike with wireless Di2. Yes, I know there's Sram, but in the last few years I've had 1 Red right shifter (2nd gen) go kaput and 1 Red rear derailleur snap at the knuckle. Also, i find the whole press both buttons to shift front thing to be really counterintuitive
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [DarkSpeedWorks] [ In reply to ]
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Yes, Piezo would be a big step forward, and with some drive train power input right before the shift, battery-free derailleurs should also be possible with current technology.
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [windschatten] [ In reply to ]
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Of course, that has already been done... badly.

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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [BryanD] [ In reply to ]
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I'd like to see a Shimano full wireless Di system that virtually disappears, is bolt on (but works as good as the current Di) & something the average consumer can put on, in a TT version with a 1x set up, with a built in power meter (unless it is part of the pedal system--which, Shimano's would be rock solid if released). Don't care if it is disc brakes or not, I have rim brakes right now so while things are shifting that way, I have no plans on upgrading until I have to. Plenty of rim gear starting to show up for sale in case of replacement needs.
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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [windschatten] [ In reply to ]
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Sounds like Mavic Mektronic

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Re: Shimano Applies For Patent On Wireless Shifters [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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echappist wrote:
Jest aside, I could really use a wireless unit. One of my bikes doesn't have internal routing, so Di2 is currently out (I really don't want to mess with drilling a hole in titanium).
If that other bike is a road bike, just suck it up and get eTap. It will rock your world. eTap’s road bike shifting crushes Shimano— the FD shift is magic. IMHO, current market, eTap is better on a road bike and Di2 is better on a tri bike.
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