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  1. #1
    Senior Member oldokie's Avatar
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    Bar End shifters with MTB components - mixed indexing????

    How do you mix Bar End shifters with MTB components? Since road bike and MTB bike components use different indexing, how do you use Bar End shifters (road bike indexing) with MTB components which use different indexing?

    I am building up a tour bike with MTB components (all 9 speed Deore LX) but I would like to try out Bar end shifters mounted on Paul Thumbies instead of traditional thumb shifters. All the Shimano bar end shifters I find are in the road bike lineup thus I would expect they are intended for road bike indexing. I know they can also be used in the friction mode but I want to use the indexing mode also. From comments I have seen in this forum and elsewhere, it appears that people have done it. I need to know what components they pulled together to get it done.
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  2. #2
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldokie
    How do you mix Bar End shifters with MTB components? Since road bike and MTB bike components use different indexing, how do you use Bar End shifters (road bike indexing) with MTB components which use different indexing?

    I am building up a tour bike with MTB components (all 9 speed Deore LX) but I would like to try out Bar end shifters mounted on Paul Thumbies instead of traditional thumb shifters. All the Shimano bar end shifters I find are in the road bike lineup thus I would expect they are intended for road bike indexing. I know they can also be used in the friction mode but I want to use the indexing mode also. From comments I have seen in this forum and elsewhere, it appears that people have done it. I need to know what components they pulled together to get it done.
    What you're describing is a match made in heaven. The Dura-Ace nine speed bar-end shifters, for example, index perfectly with any Shimano-compatible nine speed cassette (road or mountain, doesn't matter). The only place it would matter, other than with pre nine-speed Dura-Ace which is Dura-ace specific, is on the front (road brifters aren't generally compatible with mountain bike front derailleurs). But all bar-end shifters use friction-only shifting for the front derailleur, so the Dura-Ace bar-ends shift just fine with either "mountain" or "road" front derailleurs-

    P.S. I've been running this setup on my old Schwinn for quite awhile: nine speed Shimano Dura-Ace bar-end shifters, Shimano XT rear derailleur, Shimano 105 front derailleur, SRAM nine speed "mountain" cassette (11 x 32), Nashbar "Trekking" cranks w/Nashbar (Stronglight) replacement chainrings (46/36/24), Nashbar (KMC) nine speed chain. Works beautifully. And if I had used a "mountain" front derailleur, or any other front derailleur for that matter, it would still work fine because of the friction-only front shifting of the Dura-Ace bar-ends-
    Last edited by well biked; 05-28-07 at 11:13 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    I think it should work fine...

  4. #4
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    When I built my long haul trucker I installed new 9 speed bar end shifters with complete Shimano 9 speed mountain bike drivetrain. They're all compatible. Indexes perfectly as they should.
    Last edited by roadfix; 05-28-07 at 10:51 AM.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member oldokie's Avatar
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    I understand that cassette spacing is not an issue but the amount of cable pull is different between a RD for a road vs MTB. Unless I use an adapter such as a Shiftmate, a road shifter (bar end) will not produce the correct amount of indexing for a MTB component (Deore LX RD). For those who have done this without any adapter, has the indexing worked OK despite the difference in cable pull?
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  6. #6
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldokie
    I understand that cassette spacing is not an issue but the amount of cable pull is different between a RD for a road vs MTB. Unless I use an adapter such as a Shiftmate, a road shifter (bar end) will not produce the correct amount of indexing for a MTB component (Deore LX RD). For those who have done this without any adapter, has the indexing worked OK despite the difference in cable pull?
    Bar-end shifters are not available with an index mode for front shifting. For rear indexing, the cable pull is exactly the same for all Shimano index RD's (road OR mountain) except pre nine speed Dura-Ace. That's why I said it's a match made in heaven. See my above description of my old Schwinn's setup-
    Last edited by well biked; 05-28-07 at 10:52 AM.

  7. #7
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    Also, it's not really an issue that the front derailleur is not indexed, if you remember that even on a triple front chainring, the smallest ring will be all one way for the shifter, the largest all the other way, the only one you need to 'find' is the centre chainring. Once you've done it a few times it's not a problem. I myself use Shimano 8 speed barends, with a triple in front.

  8. #8
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    And to be more clear, it's the FRONT derailleurs that require different amount of cable pull between "road" and "mountain" Shimano groups. For the rear, the exception is pre nine speed Dura-Ace, all other Shimano index RD's require the same cable pull. That's why it's possible to run a Shimano "road" rear derailleur on a bike with indexed Shimano mountain bike shifters or a Shimano "mountain" RD on a bike with indexed road shifters (brifters, bar-ends, down-tube).

  9. #9
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    Senior Member Svr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldokie
    ...the amount of cable pull is different between a RD for a road vs MTB...
    The cable pull is the same for all Shimano nine speed parts, either road or mountain. Eight speed Dura-ace is the oddball group.

  10. #10
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    Since the front bar end shifter is friction I have no problem running a mountain front derailleur on my tour bike. I understand there is a slight difference between road and mountain front derailleurs.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member oldokie's Avatar
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    Thanks all. That answers my question.

    Friction is fine with me on FD...it was the rear indexing that I was worried about. Now I just need to collect the parts. I have been looking at the Paul Thumbies for the mount but I have also heard that an old bracket from a Shimano thumb shifter (model unknown) can be used to mount the bar end shifters...for a lot less money. I need to check into that before I drop $60 on the Paul Thumbies. If anyone knows what specific model(s) of the Shimano thumb shifters might do the trick, I would like to hear from you.
    Inside every old person is a young person wondering what happened.

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  12. #12
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    One other thing to note if you use Dura-Ace nine-speed bar end shifters. The instructions that come with them will say they're only compatible with Dura-Ace rear derailleurs, at least that's the way it was a couple years ago when I got mine. The statement is absolutely false, for the nine speed stuff you are going to use it won't matter a bit. Apparently Shimano didn't take this little statement out of the instructions for the nine and ten speed stuff, but they should have. It's a true statement for pre nine speed Dura Ace-

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