Flightdeck Wireless, interference with Polar HRM?
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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005

    Question Flightdeck Wireless, interference with Polar HRM?

    So I am trying to decide if I want to get the Flightdeck computer. I have already seen one post that seems to indicate that having a Polar HRM around will help suck the batteries dry on these (not sure why).

    So I am wondering if anyone has any other experience with this? Does it interfere with the HRM readings of the Polar HRM, or does it cause power side effects like the one post that I found?

    I have a Polar 720i, and have tried the speed/cadence functions. In a word, the HRM sucks as a cycling computer. Even after I changed the setting for the cadence sensor to use the more powerful transmission it still won't detect from the rear chainstay, and my down tube is not a traditionally shaped one, so it doesn't mount real well, and looks even worse.

    The speed sensor isn't much better, I had to mount the sensor way up on the fork to get it to receive properly. There is definitely a reading lag as well, it takes like 5-10 seconds for the speed to even respond initially, I am hoping that is just a "wake up", but if it is really 5-10 seconds behind on readings, than it really sucks.

    Given this, I am probably going to just use it for HRM, and get a "normal" cycling computer. I have had cadence on my computers for a while, and it would still be nice to have, but I also like the idea of a clean setup, so if I need to lose cadence I can live with that.

    I was thinking about the Cateye Double Wireless, but I see enough posts with problems, on mounting and other issues, possible HRM interference that I don't want to dump that much money on something that is just not going to work. I had almost decided on just a good ole Cateye Mity 8, since it would still be pretty clean coming off the front wheel wired, but then I saw the Flightdeck, and the gear indicator, and virtual cadence, along with being wireless intrigued me.

    Wow, that was longer than I expected it to be. Anyway, any input would be appreciated.


  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Bill70J's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    No Interference Issues with Flightdeck, IME

    I have the Polar 720i and the Shimano Flightdeck (10 speed) on the same bike. Like you, I have the Polar speed sensor mounted high up on the fork (RT side) – but because of the fork shape, not necessarily as a result of transmission issues. I also have the Polar cadence sensor -- mounted on the downtube, positioned such that it reads the magnet at a position about mid-crank (non-drive side). The Flightdeck sensor is mounted about mid-fork, below the Polar sensor (also on the RT side). Here are my experiences:

    Polar 720i. No interference from the Flightdeck. All the functions work fine. I don’t experience the delays that are plaguing you, but I do have occasions where the unit will automatically stop (when the bike stops) but will fail to automatically re-start. For that reason, I keep the Lp function displayed in the main readout position to ensure the unit is reading and recording. In the secondary position, I will monitor either cadence or altitude (when climbing). I have had the unit for 9 months and have not had any issues with either of the batteries.

    Flightdeck: No interference from the Polar. Everything works, but I had to learn how to avoid inadvertently hitting the hood switches which change the display (or stop the trip readings if you’re in a certain mode). Most often, I will display the trip distance and speed reading on the Flightdeck (since I find the trip odometer on the Polar extremely inconvenient to use). I find the gear readings helpful, though the much cheaper mechanical gear indicator works equally well.

    FWIW, if I were to do it all over again: I would still go with the Polar, but would not spend the money on a Flightdeck. I would get the much cheaper, but reliable Specialized Speedzone wireless computer (or equivalent) and install the mechanical DA gear indicator.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Ok thanks! Based on my experience so far, I am not going to try to get the Polar to work as a cycle computer, I was more just worried about getting them interfering with each other.

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    May 2002

    Thumbs up Polar 710 and Flight Deck

    I also use a Polar HRM (710i) with the flight deck. During a ride I use the Polar to display time of day over ride time then % of Max HR on the bottom. The Flight Deck is use to display cadence over speed, that way it doesn't show gear changes. I only use the Polar to record cadence during the off season, this gives me more recording time for speed and HR when out on the road.

    My sensor for the Polar is mounted on the left seat stay (same side as the HRM), I had to move the jumper inside the sensor for this to work. Supposedly this makes the battery in the sensor run down quicker so I change it once a year. I've never had to replace the batteries in the Flight Deck and its sensor more that once a year.

    Both have been on my bike for several years and they have never interfered with each other. But high tension power lines, transformers and ATV motors cause the Polar reading to spike. This spike is fixable by software if you download the data to a computer. I use the Polar software as a riding (training?) diary, makes me feel guilty if I don't ride a couple of times a week.

    I have my Polar to auto start in bike mode and it has always worked fine for me, I still have to push the big red button to wake it up. Others have reported that auto start is problematic for them. Don't see the delay you do on the Polar. Both the Flight Deck and Polar show within one or two tenth of a mile after a couple hour ride.

    Last edited by techie470; 06-10-2005 at 10:34 AM.

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