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How To Adjust A Rear Derailleur | E-MTB Maintenance Skills

How To Adjust A Rear Derailleur | E-MTB Maintenance Skills


– Hello everyone. I’m Henry from the GMBN Tech channel. So, today we’re going to be
looking at substandard shifting and inexcusable indexing. You guessed it, we’re going to
be looking at our rear mechs. (soft electronic music) Now, we adjust our rear
mechs by changing two things. Our cable tension, which
affects how the chain moves from one gear to another, and our limit screws, which
affect how a derailleur sits at its outer extremities. Now, before we even
touch our cable tension, I want us to look at our limit screws. Now, we do this first
so we don’t potentially damage our frame or spokes
as the chain rides off, and also it provides a great
starting point for our setup. We want to adjust these screws so the center of the jockey
wheels line up exactly with the applicable gear on the
outer reach of the cassette. So, with these screws,
the more you dial them in, the more it limits the
movement of the mech. So, on some derailleurs, you
have a H and a L to signify your high and your low limit screws. But not always. Like this one, for instance, doesn’t. But a really easy way to do it, is you dial it in, and then back it off. And you should be able to see movement, but it’s really important
you dial it in first because then you’re not going to risk losing the chain off the cassette. And it could potentially damage
your frame or your spokes. (soft upbeat music) Now, when we put a new cable
in, it’s really important to make sure we have some adjustment left on the barrel adjuster, should we need it. So, what I’d like to do
is dial it all the way in, and then turn it anti-clockwise about two and a half, three, revolutions. Now, this means is if I
do the cable too tight, I can then release tension from the system with the barrel adjuster, here. (soft upbeat music) So, once we’ve lined
up our barrel adjuster with that three turns, we then set the cable at the other end. So we pull through a
nice moderate tension, and then nip that bolt up
to the appropriate torque. Now a really simple way
to index your gears, is to move up through the cassette. And you’re going to go
two gears at a time. So two clicks. And it’s actually getting hung
about in that middle gear. So two clicks. Yet again, it’s getting hung
about in this middle gear, when it should have gone
straight to that one. So that would suggest
there isn’t enough tension on the system. So I’m going to add a bit of tension. Now I’m going to work my
way back down the cassette. Now I’m going to shift two down, so it should go to this gear immediately. But if it gets hung up on this gear, it means there’s too much
tension on the system. Oh, that’s okay it’s hesitating a bit. So just by going up and down. Think it needs a bit more tension. We’re just going to do it
until it never gets caught in that middle gear. Also, you can use your ears a bit, if it’s ticking a lot
in one particular gear. (gears ticking) Yeah that looks pretty good now, it’s going straight into it. Now, in an ideal world,
we don’t want to be using all the adjustment on this barrel here. Because we might need to
make some quick adjustments when we’re out riding. And if there’s already maximum tension, then you won’t be able to add any more. (upbeat jazz music) As we move through our
gears, up the cassette, you may notice that on
some of the larger cogs, getting to those dinner plates, the chain, or even the jockey wheel, might foul a little as it goes along. This is where B-tension comes in. B-tension adjusts how
far that top jockey wheel sits away from the teeth of the cassette. If it’s too close you
might even hear a prang or a rubbing noise as it goes
up into the larger gears. And if it’s too far away,
you might even get a really sloppy or inconsistent shift down the smaller blocks of the cassette. So what I like to do,
is dial in the tension, until on the biggest gear,
the teeth of the jockey wheel are just nearly kissing,
are a few millimeters away from kissing the
teeth of the cassette. Some companies even provide little tools, such as Eagle, you get
that little red tool, but you don’t really need it. It shouldn’t make a “vrr” noise, if it does, it’s too close. (upbeat music) Now if you’re really struggling with getting the desired
performance from your rear mech, it’s really worth thinking about factors that might affect this. So I would think about a
worn chain, worn cassette. Things like your inner cables, are not only very cheap to replace, but have a dramatic effect
if they come across corrosion or get any dirt in there
and things like that. So for a relatively cheap part, it can really affect how
your whole very expensive and nice bike feels. (upbeat music) I think sometimes companies
label things e-bike specific or e-bike this and e-bike that. And sometimes I feel
it’s a bit of a gimmick, however drivetrains is somewhere that I would beg to differ. E-bike drivetrains are stiffer, heavier and more durable, and
they allow for more torque to be put through the system. An example of this is just looking at one of these chains. You can see the bushings and the rollers are just so much meatier and that provides a stiffer interface for
the derailleur to work. As you can see, these
rollers are so much bigger than on a standard chain. And it’s actually not
unheard of for downhill teams to use e-bike specific chains, just so when they’re a
load of the gears out of the start gate that have a
stiffer and sharper transfer. So it’s really as simple as that. Changing and adjusting your gears doesn’t have to be this huge undertaking that takes up hours, it can
rather be a quick adjustment before the start of a ride. Now if you want to see how Jonesy got on, testing the new Merida, click here. And if you want to see those two pillocks just falling off their
bikes, click down here.

14 comments on “How To Adjust A Rear Derailleur | E-MTB Maintenance Skills

  1. I spend twenty minutes getting it perfect..5 mins into ride its jumping all over the place and then into the spokes….then repairs itself by the end of the ride.

  2. Really, this clip should have started by checking rear hanger alignment first. There is no point trying to adjust the rear mech if this is incorrect.

  3. Hi embn. i am looking for an app that estimates the range of my ebike in a specific trail draw by me in google maps. thanks.

  4. my hanger was slightly bent and no amount of adjustment could fix it, i got the alignment tool and a spare hanger for the complete fix , then got to work straightening, but here is the kicker… The new hanger was still out a tiny bit, the old a lot, all my other bikes were out too , and a mates bikes were all out as well !! The effect was dramatic and like upgrading my mech and cluster for hundreds of bucks instead, precision was never so good , even brand new bikes were out a bit , cannot recommend highly enough for that last bit of adjustment ! https://www.google.com/search?q=derailleur+alignment+tool&sa=X&rlz=1C1CHBF_enNZ751NZ751&source=univ&tbm=shop&tbo=u&ved=0ahUKEwj2yOeYxIPjAhUDiHAKHb9uDmAQsxgILw&biw=1920&bih=937

  5. You don't need to jump 2 gears at a time…. that's why it's indexed. Just work between the two highest gears and when they're running smooth the rest should be fine. And with EX1 I can only shift one at a time 😉

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