General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system Rss Feed  
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2013-12-29 6:12 AM

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Subject: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system
...this thread is about the SHIV's integral fuselage hydration system (for water) not the frame-mounted fuel cell (for carrying spare parts and nutrition).

Santa brought me a new 2013 SHIV and I'm experiencing mixed results with the integral hydration system. In theory this is a great idea and I really want it to work, but the bladder is hard to fill completely - holds much less than it should - and the bite valve is virtually useless in real world application - requires more effort to suck than the trickle of water is worth. This technology has been around for a while so I'm wondering if others are experiencing the same things and, if so, if they have developed workable solutions.

Reading on the 'slow twitch' forums I found some users who have replaced the OE bite valve with a Camelbak "big bite" valve and they say this has solved the flow problem. Anyone else tried this? That'll be my first fix.

But what about the capacity issue? Seems like the bag gets hung up upon re-entry (after removing it for cleaning) creating folds or twists that limit capacity. And since it's gravity fed there doesn't seem to be a way to force the issue. Has anyone come up with workaround? I tried using the handle of a kitchen utensil to probe the bag, but that was only somewhat effective.

The rest of the bike is sweet, but I'd love for this to work, too!

2013-12-30 4:35 PM
in reply to: wsb5c

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Subject: RE: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system

I replaced the OE bite valve with a Camelbak "big bite" valve and that seems to have alleviated all flow-related issues. Easy does it. Note: the Camelbak big bite valve fits inside of the magnet extender, not around it like the OE bite valve. Just twist it in. It fits. Six bucks.

And I tried to address the capacity issues by blowing into the end of the tube to reverse the flow. That seems to have forced open some of the folds and created some additional capacity. Still not all the way there, but better. Note: remove the bite valve to reverse the flow.
2013-12-31 9:46 AM
in reply to: wsb5c

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Subject: RE: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system
I have the same issue, not with the mouth piece, but the volume and putting it in... I due HIM or less racing, so I just keep one bottle behind the seat and the what's in the bladder... I've noticed that mine holds about 500ml of fluid installed, so I have to keep in mind what's available during a race and grab something on the fly if I might need more. I have a love-hate relationship too.. I found that the tube the holds the cables for routing gets in the way when installing the bag, I learned to lean the bag to the the left to avoid colliding with the cable tube thing.

2015-03-30 5:22 PM
in reply to: 0

Subject: RE: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system
I admit I bought the bike because of this nifty feature, but I blame it on my first DNF at last year's 70.3. I was not able to suck up enough fluids and could not tell how much was left in the bag. I know how to tweak the bag and straw for refilling and optimal suction, but during a race you just don't have time for all of that. The sides of the bladder gets stuck on itself, especially if you drink it dry. You have to do a bunch of steps to get it to work right. Filling on the fly just doesn't work when the bladder starts acting up. Because I didn't take in enough fluid during the bike, I was dehydrated beyond repair during the run. Not to mention wasted time trying to mess with it at fill stations on the bike. I have other things to worry about during a race besides my drinking bladder malfunctioning.

I have abandoned it and bought an xlab torpedo kit mounted on the bull horns. Way easier to use, I can refill on the fly, see how much I have left, and when I'm not racing or using the indoor trainer, I can use the cage for normal water bottles too.

I still think the shiv body design slices through the wind very well and I love the bike otherwise.

Edited by HonoluluAngel 2015-03-30 5:24 PM
2015-05-31 7:40 PM
in reply to: 0

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system
Just bought my Shiv and so far I am loving it.

Thank you for the suggestion of replacing the mouth piece I did notice water running out.

My question is do you pull out your bladder after every ride to clean it? It gets a little frustrating trying to get it in each time also would love to come up with an easy way to get it back in place.


Edited by krazytallchick 2015-05-31 7:45 PM
2015-06-24 2:24 PM
in reply to: krazytallchick

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Deep South, Georgia
Subject: RE: Specialized SHIV fuselage hydration system

I take mine out after every race to clean it and let it dry. I don't use the bladder for training, just carry a water bottle.

I have the same issues when trying to fill though. Seems like there should be some way after inserting the bladder to blow air in to "inflate" it. Then you could add your liquid without an issue. As far as refilling on the go or the sides sticking, can't help you there. 

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