On a beautiful April morning, on the outskirts of Boulder, Colorado, a day perfect for cycling, a group of dedicated mechanics chose instead to head to a small meeting room at an area hotel. Campagnolo North America’s Dan Large was in town to take them, and me, through the latest from the Italian parts manufacturer.
As part of increased efforts in education, Large came to Colorado to meet mechanics on their own turf. These efforts are mirrored all over the world, with Campagnolo recently hiring an education manager who is serializing the classes in Japan, Germany, France and elsewhere. The seminars are four hours long and give mechanics a chance to dive deep into the minutiae of Campagnolo’s latest groups and technologies with an expert on hand.
Over the course of that April morning, Large walked the group through best practices for installing mechanical and EPS electronic groups, discussed preferred tools, explained Campagnolo bearing technologies, and even added in historical tidbits about the Italian firm. For instance, Tullio Campagnolo developed new ways to cast aluminum and magnesium, producing engine blocks for Ferrari, BMW, and Porsche. His work in magnesium led to the invention of “mag wheels,” with Campagnolo selling off its motorcycle and automotive wheel company to Marchesini, a Brembo subsidiary that now makes magnesium wheels for MotoGP and World Superbike motorcycle racing. Campagnolo also worked with NASA in the late 1960s building magnesium satellite chassis.
In the 21st century, the latest innovation from Campagnolo is its new MyCampy app, which allows EPS v3 electronic drivetrain users to customize shift button function, shift patterns, and log mileage to help with maintenance. The application is both iOS and Android compatible and can link with a rider’s Strava account. The app also integrates with Garmin 520 and 100 GPS units, giving riders gear indication and battery life on screen.
From a mechanic’s perspective, the most interesting feature is perhaps the maintenance reminders that the app will send to its user, reminding them to clean their bike, install a new chain, or to check brake pads, among other prompts. For riders, the ability to assign button function, create custom shift profiles and adjust shift speed and power are all possibilities.
Using MyCampy riders can use default settings, a selection of preset modes, or dive deep and customize to their heart’s content. Sprint mode is an attractive one, with the buttons behind the brake levers shifting the rear derailleur (typically right side for a harder gear [smaller cog], left side for an easier gear [larger cog]). The thumb buttons, on the inside of the lever body, then control the front derailleur. For riders with disabilities or injured cyclists, it is also possible to control both derailleurs with a single shifter, using the Mode button for the front derailleur and the normal shift buttons for the rear derailleur.