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Old 03-31-09, 12:20 PM   #1
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Worse invention

Attention all Bike Mechanics!

In your honest to God opinions, would you say that the worse thing to come out of japan's component giant, Shimano is their "rapid rise" derailleur (AKA Crapid rise, Rapid Demise, etc.) or their "Biopace" chain rings??

Mechanics at our shop have quarreled over this topic for eons, and now we want others to chime in!
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Old 03-31-09, 12:23 PM   #2
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I loved the BioPace on my old Trek 1000, so by default I will have to answer RapidRise.
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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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Old 03-31-09, 12:43 PM   #3
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There is nothing wrong with bio pace and no reason for rapid rise. Guess my answer. I personally think brifters are an even worse invention. A shifter that can't be fixed on the road is worthless. Roger
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Old 03-31-09, 01:52 PM   #4
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I have a Rapid Rise derailer. Don't forget, the very first derailers were low normal AKA rapid rise.

I got it because it was on sale, but I can't complain.

EDIT- I actuate it with a downtube shifter.
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Old 03-31-09, 01:59 PM   #5
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i have both on my miyata 1000, and i like them both. rapid rise is cool because you can shift in the same direction as your front derailleur.
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Old 03-31-09, 02:18 PM   #6
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I'm glad you guys hate the Rapid Rise stuff so badly... I ride an XTR low normal rear derailleur that I got from my LBS for $40 brand new in the box because they couldn't get rid of it. I think that some folks just don't like them 'cause they're different than what they're used to... but I got top of the line XTR stuff for a song and it shifts silky smooth.

Keep on hating them RR derailleurs... makes it cheaper for me!
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Old 03-31-09, 02:22 PM   #7
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Biopace was nothing new when introduced that I can see. Non round chainrings date back to the 1890s or so based on photos I have seen of some antique bikes. Like women's fashions they seem to come and go only to be reintroduced again. Shimano's iteration did nothing more than change the orientation of the high area in relation to the cranks and they had two versions as I recall, the earlier with greater eccentricity than the latter.

No opinion on the derailleur as I have not tried one.
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Old 03-31-09, 02:28 PM   #8
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I was in the bike business from 1978 through 1984. I saw a few funny things come through then. SunTour had front derailleurs that upshifted when you reduced cable tension. They weren't terrible, but they didn't have any real advantage except that if you were new to gears on a bicycle, the directions of the shifters were less confusing.

Shimano tried some technology out on cheap bikes before the expensive bikes. They had a freewheeling bottom bracket coupled with a fixed gear cluster, so that all the freewheeling was in the crankset, not on the rear wheel. The advantage was that you could shift while coasting. It didn't catch on.

They introduced indexed shifting on super-cheap bikes long before they did so on nice bikes. We pooh-poohed the very concept, but in retrospect, we did it only because of the bikes, not the concept.

I know one mechanic who would probably still claim that the spring-loaded upper pivot bolt is a flawed idea. Shimano has always had it, as far as I know, and Campagnolo and SunTour didn't have it. I don't have an opinion.

Shimano has had some screwy ideas, for sure, and they've had some brilliant ones, too.

I think the worst thing isn't a particular design but the constant changes they make, which make repairing components difficult. I really don't believe all of this change is necessary, and it means you have to replace components when they fail. It's stuff like this that make many of us perceive Shimano as the Microsoft of the bike component business. They are the biggest company in the market, by far, and their decisions affect all the rest of the companies. Sometimes they do what's good for them in antithesis with what's good for customers.
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Old 03-31-09, 02:40 PM   #9
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Old 03-31-09, 02:47 PM   #10
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bikeradar.com has an article last week about how a pro mountain bike rider is using the new "egg shaped" chainrings. Yes folks, the biopace is coming back.
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Old 03-31-09, 02:47 PM   #11
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I've never had occasion to work on these so-called Rapid Demise derailleurs, but now I'll look into them. Regards Biopace - I had Biopace on an old Mountain-Bike of mine. I had/have no complaints. In fact I rather liked them. One went a little further and a little faster for the same energy expenditure. This being due to their removing that dead-zone in one's pedal-stroke.
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Old 03-31-09, 04:42 PM   #12
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What about accushift ???
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Old 03-31-09, 04:46 PM   #13
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Clipless pedals.














j/k....
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Old 03-31-09, 06:44 PM   #14
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What about accushift ???
Wrong company.
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Old 03-31-09, 06:52 PM   #15
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FWIW, Sheldon Brown thought Rapid Rise was an excellent idea.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:04 PM   #16
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But does he still? I'll go get my Ouija Board.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:14 PM   #17
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Bio-pace is useless and I don't see the need for 9 or 10 rear cogs. They quietly changed the DA 10 speed rear hubs to ones with outboard bearings cause the ones with the aluminum freehub and inboard bearings was a very bad idea.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:23 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by FSAS/SS/FG View Post
Attention all Bike Mechanics!

In your honest to God opinions, would you say that the worse thing to come out of japan's component giant, Shimano is their "rapid rise" derailleur (AKA Crapid rise, Rapid Demise, etc.) or their "Biopace" chain rings??

Mechanics at our shop have quarreled over this topic for eons, and now we want others to chime in!
Both are actually good designs that never gained mass market appeal.

To those who say that Biopace rings are akin to oval rings needs to do some studying up.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:23 PM   #19
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Worst thing out of Japan. Ever.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:29 PM   #20
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I always liked the old Suntour front d's with their high normal position... I hate brifters for the aforementioned "break them and you're screwed" sentiment, and one might add any integrated shifter and brake that Shimano has offered because you know the shifter will wear out long before the brake and as a whole... it costs so much more to replace.
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Old 03-31-09, 07:47 PM   #21
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Personally I feel that integrated shift/brake levers are worse than Biopace or RapidRise.

Once the shifter wears out the whole unit has to be replaced. If the brake leverage doesn't match, the fix is ugly and kludgey. The same is true for a broken brake lever. Ya gotta keep 'em separated!

Edit: Looks like Sixty and I agree.
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Old 03-31-09, 08:03 PM   #22
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Personally I feel that integrated shift/brake levers are worse than Biopace or RapidRise.

Once the shifter wears out the whole unit has to be replaced. If the brake leverage doesn't match, the fix is ugly and kludgey. The same is true for a broken brake lever. Ya gotta keep 'em separated!

Edit: Looks like Sixty and I agree.
You're right. Lets go back to bar end shifters and downtube shifters.
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Old 03-31-09, 08:07 PM   #23
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You're right. Lets go back to bar end shifters and downtube shifters.
Back ?
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Old 03-31-09, 08:10 PM   #24
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Personally I feel that integrated shift/brake levers are worse than Biopace or RapidRise.

Once the shifter wears out the whole unit has to be replaced. If the brake leverage doesn't match, the fix is ugly and kludgey. The same is true for a broken brake lever. Ya gotta keep 'em separated!

Edit: Looks like Sixty and I agree.
And we're even right this time.
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Old 03-31-09, 08:12 PM   #25
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You're right. Lets go back to bar end shifters and downtube shifters.
Meh, I like trigger shifters. As long as they aren't integrated with the lever, I'm fine with them.

Due to seeing how costly and how often brifters have to be replaced, I set my road bike up with barend shifters. They work beautifully.
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