Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 22 of 22
  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Why are brifters so expensive?

    I can get functional (maybe not the greatest or lightest but they work fine) shimano brake/shifter pods for a mountain bike for around $30 a pair. Higher quality pieces ramp up from there (and there are probably nashbar-type units for less.

    Why can't I get anywhere near that for similar road shifters? Nashbar brand brifters are still $200 a set and I can't even get good used prices.

    My situation is this, I have a bike with a dying 600 2spd left brifter and a perfectly good ultegra 9spd rear (upgraded from 8 to 9). I also am trying to put together a cross bike with something like a 1x9. I have many options...I could simply buy a used left brifter to fix my current problem (assuming that almost any 2spd ultegra/600/105/whatever will work). I could buy a used set and use the left one to replace the broken part and the right one to go on the cross bike (I could go 8/9/10...doesn't matter). Finally, I could buy a new set, put both on the road bike, and move the still working ultegra right shifter to the cross bike.

    Why are these parts so much more expensive that even used it would cost me many multiples of what a brand new mountain brake/shifter pod would cost.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    3,134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    This has been covered many times here, just the other day actually. I suggest that you search the threads. They're complex and only a few Co.s make them. Used are pricey too.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Loveland, CO
    My Bikes
    Two LOOK 585s, one KG461
    Posts
    4,987
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    2009 Campy Veloce ultrashift levers can be had for around $140 with a cable set worth about $50, from Ribble. Campy has the lowest priced shifters across the board, but if you know what you're buying, you know that Chorus 11 shifters are identical to higher priced Record and even the SR shifters only have one Ti part and some cutouts in the brake lever to distinguish them from Record/Chorus.

    The price is based on what the market will bear.

    Your comparison with MTB shifters if off base though. There's a lot more to a road bike brake/shift lever.

  4. #4
    Ol' Reliable formerbrit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Not where you'd think
    My Bikes
    Dolan DF3, Fondriest TF1
    Posts
    108
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Really really really really really tired of this "brifter" stuff.
    "I have started many stories about bicycle racing but have never written one that is as good as the races are both on the indoor and outdoor tracks and on the roads."
    -Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'll look into some campy shifters (though I have never used ergo or double tap...only sti)

    Do I need a campy derailleur to make it all work or can I pull it off with shimano? If I need campy...does any recent ebay special work or are there only certain ones that work...if so, I am assuming campy cassette and thus campy compatible hub or is there some point at which the parts can go either way (like campy cassettes that fit shimano hubs)

    what about this xenon or mirage stuff? They do actually seem dirt cheap...what do I lose over the veloces?

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    My Bikes
    Trek 5500, Colnago C-50
    Posts
    9,208
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Don't start mixing Campy with Shimano unless you have to, that can be a can of worms. Either stay one way or the other if at all possible.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Al1943 View Post
    Don't start mixing Campy with Shimano unless you have to, that can be a can of worms. Either stay one way or the other if at all possible.
    Does it matter in front? If I want to replace the 600 front shifter on the road bike with the campy left, there should be no problem with the FD right? (and certainly no problem with the existing cranks/chainring since the rear is full shimano). If I then use the right shifter on the cross bike...it shouldnt matter what the setup is in front since I am going 1x9 (it probably won't be either shimano or campy)

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    My Bikes
    Trek 5500, Colnago C-50
    Posts
    9,208
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Since you have a double crankset, I think it would probably work OK mechanically but since I haven't tried it I can't say for sure.
    The differences in the shapes of the brifters and the differences in brake reach would drive me nuts. Plus the cables and cable housings would have to match the brifters.
    I alternate between bikes with Record 10 and D-A 9 and they feel very different. I would not mix them, but that's just me.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Al1943 View Post
    Since you have a double crankset, I think it would probably work OK mechanically but since I haven't tried it I can't say for sure.
    The differences in the shapes of the brifters and the differences in brake reach would drive me nuts. Plus the cables and cable housings would have to match the brifters.
    I alternate between bikes with Record 10 and D-A 9 and they feel very different. I would not mix them, but that's just me.
    Well, they are already different shapes a bit due to the rear being upgraded to ultegra 9s and the front being 600...but yeah the different mechanisms might be annoying...if I can find a cheap front DT lever, I might just fix it with that (rarely shift up front).

    As for the cross bike though...this campy stuff is starting to look interesting if I can make it work OK with a jtek shiftmate. I can go either way on the derailleur but the wheels have got to be shimano so either a #1 or a #3 would work (although that requires buying a front and rear veloce shifter when I only really need rear)

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    My Bikes
    Trek 5500, Colnago C-50
    Posts
    9,208
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It sounds like you know what you are doing and can probably make it work your way.
    Keep in mind that in the future if you want to switch stuff from one bike to the other things get more complicated when you mix brands.

    Al

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    That is why I am trying to keep the wheel/cassette shimano. I don't have a lot of money to do this with right now so I would like to keep things like wheels compatible

    If campy is the cheapest way to get shifters though...I've always wanted to experiment

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Loveland, CO
    My Bikes
    Two LOOK 585s, one KG461
    Posts
    4,987
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Avoid 2007-2008 Centaur, Veloce Mirage or Xenon. All crappy escape shifters that are no longer made.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bluenote157's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    DC
    My Bikes
    Surly CC, Raleigh Team Pro, Specialized Rockhopper
    Posts
    950
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I made it work. you can use a 10speed campy ergos with 9speed shimano cass/derailleur. You dont even need to buy a jtek. Do a search on hubub or shimergo or something and i'm sure you'll see it. All it is is a rerouting of the cable fastener mount so that it "appears" to pull less cable? or something like that???
    If you are looking for a set of used 105 9speed stis, pm me.

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    104
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I just checked out Ribble's. I am going to stop trolling ebay for shifters. Just how much do they charge for shipping on a usual order?

  15. #15
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Dante's Third Ring
    Posts
    7,481
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Why are they so expensive? Because it always is expensive when someone else has some *bling* you don't need - but you can't help yourself. None for me, thanks.
    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

  16. #16
    cab horn
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Toronto
    My Bikes
    1987 Bianchi Campione
    Posts
    28,295
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Al1943 View Post
    Don't start mixing Campy with Shimano unless you have to, that can be a can of worms. Either stay one way or the other if at all possible.
    Oh please.

    Jtek makes a product called the shiftmate which lets you mix and match shimano and campy with ease. They even have a table that tells you what you can mix with what.

    http://jtekengineering.com/shiftmate.htm

    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    4,798
    Mentioned
    11 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    While I never tried the shiftmate, I did try using Shimano 10sp and 9sp cassettes with a Chorus 10 setup. You can shift, you can ride it all day, but that one time you really need a crisp shift when going up a hill it won't quite engage. That was the problem. On the flats where it isn't critical you'll be ok, downhill wasn't a problem. If you have the presence of mind to get into just the right gear before you start up the hill its ok. But if you are already struggling, and think "OH, I still have a gear left!!!" and you try to get into it, fuggedaboudit. The chain will slip, you'll stall with your feet clipped in and fall over.

    Of course that's an exaggeration, but that will be where you'll see the problem, going uphill when you need it most.

  18. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Loveland, CO
    My Bikes
    Two LOOK 585s, one KG461
    Posts
    4,987
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    No one should expect good results mixing Campy and Shimano cassettes and drivetrains. Campy's spacing has always been wider 4.55mm for 9 speed and 4.12mm for 10 speed. Shimano is 4.32 and 3.95mm. The small difference accumulates to a larger amount after every shift.

    The cable pulls and RD actuation ratios are also entirely different. That's where a shiftmate comes into play - to change the cable pull so the RD produces the correct movement.

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    283
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    There are some really good reviews of the shiftmate out there...I was worried about it adding extra friction to the cable path but it sounds like that is counteracted by the fact that you get to run a shorter housing and a more ideal angle.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    144
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I use a pair of 06' (pre-escape) 10s Veloce shifters with an otherwise 9s Shimano drivetrain. I use the alternate cable routing that others have mentioned already. It works well enough for my needs, although I wouldn't race with them. I have heard VERY good things about setups with Shiftmates. Do a little price-checking and see if it'd be cheaper to get Campy shifter+ Shiftmate for less than Shimano shifters.

  21. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    4,798
    Mentioned
    11 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Can you swap wheels back and forth with the shiftmate? With my Chorus 10 setup, can I use my Campy wheels, then swap to my Shimano/Velomax, and then go back to Campy without having to remove or readjust the cable? I'm going to look at the website for the answer.

    The question isn't really addressed, so I'm assuming no.
    Last edited by zacster; 09-18-09 at 05:02 AM.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Steev's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Backwoods of Ontario
    Posts
    2,139
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by zacster View Post
    Can you swap wheels back and forth with the shiftmate? With my Chorus 10 setup, can I use my Campy wheels, then swap to my Shimano/Velomax, and then go back to Campy without having to remove or readjust the cable? I'm going to look at the website for the answer.

    The question isn't really addressed, so I'm assuming no.
    Correct. If you change from a Campy spaced cassette to Shimano spaced, you will have to add the Shiftmate, remove it to go back to Campy spacing.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •