Elite Direto cassette - can’t align rear derailleur

The Direto had some issues so was returned to store within a few days of buying. I ended up with a Tacx Genius (chain of stores was close to bankruptcy and it was all they had in stock).

My mech hanger moves inwards when I tighten the skewer on my elite muin (I’m very lazy when it comes to mechanical stuff so have accepted it).
It might be something to look at?

  • This sounds like you were adjusting the High Limit and Low Limit screws on the derailleur. Generally speaking, these should not be adjusted for use on a trainer.
    • They will only affect the absolute High gear (smallest cassette cog) and Low gear (largest cassette cog).
    • The screws will do absolutely nothing for the performance of the shifting anywhere else in the range.
    • You will likely need to readjust them to match your regular wheel or you will risk over or under shifting with that other setup.
  • To clarify, you were using the barrel adjuster at the rear of the derailleur?
  • Did you try tighter and looser adjustments? It is necessary to understand the pure shifting performance from the start (is it over or under shifting to the next cog) and the direction of shifting to know which way to turn the adjuster.
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Try to get one combination of gears where it runs quiet and leave it there in erg mode. I have a Direto too and now have an old hard tail 10spd mtb on it rather than the gravel bike. It’s never quite happy on some gears and others it’s fine and quiet.
As others have said you should only really adjust the barrel adjuster so it’s quiet on the smallest cog and moves up a gear at a time… like this :joy:

2:55 onwards is tension adjustment on the cable and before that it goes into the limit screws…

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Hi Chad,

Thank you for making me aware of the high/low screws not affecting the in between gears, I wrongly thought they did.

The steps I took (somewhat calm at first, more emotional/dumb towards the end as it didn’t work):
1: Adjust the high/low screws to align (the highest/hardest gear on the cassette didn’t quite align with the derailleur). So I then:
2: Tried various tightening/loosening of the barrel adjuster. That didn’t align the highest gear/rear derailleur either. Still a small mismatch that caused a small amount of misalignment and noise. Ever more frustrated I then:
3: (Over) tightened the rear derailleur cable at the hex bolt mount (thinking that the cable was too loose). Which also didn’t work.

So I’m left with the (maybe incorrect) conclusion that a cassette spacer might be the only logical next step (unless it’s an issue of new cassette vs less new/not quite old chain).

I thought I went through the steps in a logical way, but so far am coming up short.

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I highly suggest you watch the video above and others like it. You need a better understanding of the parts and what they really do before randomly wrenching on parts. It leads to mistakes and frustration that don’t solve the real issues.

  • It would never “work” with the goal you had in mind.
    • This fastener is the “pinch” point that only secures the cable to the derailleur. It is set at the beginning of the derailleur setup and should not be touched after that moment.
    • It does absolutely nothing specifically for adjusting the “tension” of the cable. So “over” tightening it would have no affect other than potentially stripping the fastener and smooshing the cable more.
  • This adjustment is the “right” one to look at in most cases. Adjustments should be done in a deliberate direction (tight or loose) in accordance with review of the result from making a single shift (up or down).
    • It’s a bad idea to randomly turn the adjuster without a clear understanding of the direction of adjustment and the expected result.
    • Turn it no more than a 1/2 turn and then retest shifting performance in both directions.
  • This all leads to what I think is needed, a reset.
    • What exact shifting and gearing (10-speed, 11-speed) do you have on your bike?
    • What exact cassette is installed on your trainer?
    • Is either one (trainer cassette or drivetrain on your bike) very old and possibly worn?

I can’t help but think you may have a mismatch of some sort (speeds or wear) that is the primary issue that is not being addressed.

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Thank you very much for this!! I need to watch this and become better at these bike mechanics.

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The first time doing something like this can be a bit nerve wracking and you don’t want to break your bike.

I’m assuming you’ve got the right adapters in the right place - GPLama has some good vids on this - about 5:00 into this one -

there should be two cassette spacers in the box - try one or two behind the cassette, from memory there’s a little slip in the bag with the axle adaptors that tells you how many to put on? Though i could be wrong on this. I’ve used mine with 10 and 11 speed - both worked fine.

And with 5 different bikes - mine and my daughters and wife’s. All were fine.

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I suggest holding off on spacers until the specific bike & trainer cassette questions are answered. There can be a range of answers as to whether a spacer is or is not needed. Just guessing and tossing them on is not a great plan.

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Sorry yes good point - 11 spd shouldn’t need a spacer…

I may go dig out that slip in my garage - unless the wife gets diner sorted out…

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  • And there in lies the possible confusion.

Typical 11 speed road cassette won’t need a spacer.

  • But the new Shimano 11-34 road cassette is effectively like the MTB setup and it does need a spacer (not necessarily likely, but I’ve seen more than one rider use this cassette on a trainer).
  • As well as most Shimano MTB cassettes (far less likely, but not impossible) will need a spacer.
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That’s the one.

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Didn’t realise that - every day truly is a school day.

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I have a Direto and have a similar issue with some of the gears not being aligned properly. However I don’t bother trying to adjust the barrel adjuster or anything else as all that will do is mean I just transfer the problem to the road when I’m not on the trainer. As someone above suggested, I have found the simplest solution is to just find one gear that runs pretty smooth and stay in that gear when you’re on the trainer. Of course, this assumes you can find one smooth gear, that you use ERG mode, and that you are as lazy as me :joy:

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@LarsMeiner if it was really driving me crazy I would just micro-adjust cable tension using the barrel adjuster on my rear derailleur. Turn the barrel adjuster clockwise to move the jockey wheel away from the trainer. Turn the barrel adjuster counter-clockwise to move the jockey wheel toward the trainer.

You can get behind your bike and eyeball the cassette cog and the rear derailleur jockey wheel while you turn the barrel adjuster. Just turn the barel adjuster until the jockey wheel lines up with the cassette cog.

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Points well taken, thank you for taking the time to address these issues and some things that I have clearly misunderstood. I’m going to read up and watch that derailleur adjustment video. Thanks again for taking the time to explain, really appreciate it!

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Thank you very much! I have realized during this thread how behind I’ve been on rear derailleur adjustments, too many wrong assumptions on my part.

Haha yeah, that’s what I used to do and now got the dumb idea that an 11 speed should equal pefect compliance for each gear. On the bright side, this has shown me just how woefully inadequate my understanding of gears were

I have a bike that stays on trainer all the time, 10sd shimano

When just riding on Zwift, my misalignment challenge comes when going from big ring to small up front

I blamed Direto for similar problem. Same bike on trainer and outside. If indexed correctly for one, crappy shifting on other. Asked LSB if they could fix if I brought trainer in too. Nah, they said, one or the other.

Turns out the leftover cassette on the trainer was Shimano 11-32, whereas the same level cassette on new bike was 11-34. I remembered at time thinking no problem, since they’re both same level 11-spd. And there wasn’t in erg with no shifting. Resuming Zwift after COVID is when problem surfaced. It disappeared when I replaced older 11-32 with new 11-34 I was saving. Apparently the cogs are spaced just enough differently to require slightly different indexing. Who would have thought?