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    Council of the Elders billydonn's Avatar
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    10-speed Brifters to Shift 9-speed?

    I'm building a bike frome an eBay frame and want it to be 9-speed drivetrain. Can I use new 2010 Shimano 10-speed to shift 9-speed? How about 2008-09 Shimano 10-speed to shift it? TIA.

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    A 10-speed shifter will not shift 9-speed cassettes properly as the cog spacing is wider. A Jtek Shiftmate will match the two. www.jtekengineering.com

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    Some have had luck using Campy 10-speed to shift a Shimano 9-speed drivetrain. A search will give you some discussions on it and you can decide if you want to go that route.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jasonrobo02 View Post
    Some have had luck using Campy 10-speed to shift a Shimano 9-speed drivetrain. A search will give you some discussions on it and you can decide if you want to go that route.
    this works, but the cable needs to be routed differently.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasonrobo02 View Post
    Some have had luck using Campy 10-speed to shift a Shimano 9-speed drivetrain. A search will give you some discussions on it and you can decide if you want to go that route.
    I've had great results doing just that but I ues a Shiftmate so there are no compromises anywhere across the cassette.

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    If you have 10-speed Shimano shifters all you need to add is a Shimano 10-speed cassette and 10-speed chain to have a real 10-speed drivetrain. The shifters are the expensive part, why not do it right to begin with.

    Al

  7. #7
    Pleasurable Pain greyghost_6's Avatar
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    YES you can! With NO additional hardware. If you are a descent mechanic tuning normal setups its a breeze. All you have to do is use the alternate cable routing on your rear derailleur (it is a shimano isn't it?) Go to http://www.sheldonbrown.com/dura-ace.html and see pictures for "Alternate Cable Routing" it says right at the bottom "This alternate cable routing will also let you use a 10-speed shifter with a 9-speed cassette." Its a little known secret and I get flamed every time because they don't believe me (or even Sheldon!) Maybe because its just too simple and I dind't spend money to make it work. Enjoy!
    Last edited by greyghost_6; 09-27-09 at 12:19 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by greyghost_6 View Post
    YES you can! With NO additional hardware. If you are a descent mechanic tuning normal setups its a breeze. All you have to do is use the alternate cable routing on your rear derailleur (it is a shimano isn't it?) Go to http://www.sheldonbrown.com/dura-ace.html and see pictures for "Alternate Cable Routing" it says right at the bottom "This alternate cable routing will also let you use a 10-speed shifter with a 9-speed cassette." Its a little known secret and I get flamed every time because they don't believe me (or even Sheldon!) Maybe because its just too simple and I dind't spend money to make it work. Enjoy!
    This is a half ass hack at best. No offense.
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    Senior Member sonatageek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    This is a half ass hack at best. No offense.
    I have never tried it, but if it works, what makes it 'half ass' exactly? I would describe it as elegant and simple.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonatageek View Post
    I have never tried it, but if it works, what makes it 'half ass' exactly? I would describe it as elegant and simple.
    Shifting isn't "it works" or "it doesn't work". There are a million shades in between. For example 8 speed shifter shifting 7 cogs. You *may* get it to shift fine in some situations or you may not.

    Thus half ass.

    The OP is building a NEW bike. Why the **** would he BUY INTO a problem? The other good question is why the hell the OP wants to build a brand new frame with 9sp components. They are on their way out. 10 speed will only become increasingly easier and cheaper to find and just the opposite with 9sp. The Op is not going to save any money, especially not any future compatibility by sticking with a deprecated group. IT doesn't make any sense to me to buy a 10 speed shifter to shift a 9 speed groupset and then hack it to make it work. Simply does not make any ****ing sense.

    The OP wants to buy a 10 speed shifter, why? Thread over.
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  11. #11
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    Re: 9 speed.

    I prefer it to ten.

    I find chains last longer. Stays in tune longer. And I get nothing out of the extra cog between the 11 and the 23.

    But that's an arguement for another thread...

    This is good to know for when my stash of 9speed shifters runs out...

    -Z

  12. #12
    Council of the Elders billydonn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DinoShepherd View Post
    Re: 9 speed.

    I prefer it to ten.

    I find chains last longer. Stays in tune longer. And I get nothing out of the extra cog between the 11 and the 23.

    But that's an arguement for another thread...

    This is good to know for when my stash of 9speed shifters runs out...

    -Z
    Those reasons were pretty much what I had in mind in thinking about sticking with 9-speed drive components. Also, good used 9-speed brifters cost almost as much as new 10-speed... so if I go with 10-speed brifters, if/when 9-speed drivetrain stuff gets rare then I'll already have 10-speed shifters. Looks like I might want a shift-mate.

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    Senior Member sonatageek's Avatar
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    Not to mention if you want some really low granny gears you have to go 9 speed. Smallest front ring with 10 speed is a 30 tooth, 9 speed mountain gets you down to 22 tooth. Rear clusters go to 34 tooth with 9 speed.

    One of the rubs with how some of companies spec touring bikes, is those with 10 speed road groups do not have the low end to allow a fully loaded bike to make it up hills with a degree of comfort (or if steep enough, at all).

    9 speed will be with us for a long time to come. If or until mountain bikes go to 10 speed, 9 speed is not 'on its way out'.

  14. #14
    BAM! theextremist04's Avatar
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    You can put nine speed cranksets on ten speed drivetrains with no ill effects. And there's absolutely no reason you'd need a lower gear than a 22-28 or so with a road bike. That would be painfully slow.

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    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    If your going to get the shiftmate you may be out of luck soon, apparently the owner is closing the doors due to health reasons.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonatageek View Post
    Not to mention if you want some really low granny gears you have to go 9 speed. Smallest front ring with 10 speed is a 30 tooth
    True only if you think you have to have Shimano or Campy. TA Specialties and others make smaller 74 BCD chainrings for road triples.

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    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by billydonn View Post
    Those reasons were pretty much what I had in mind in thinking about sticking with 9-speed drive components. Also, good used 9-speed brifters cost almost as much as new 10-speed... so if I go with 10-speed brifters, if/when 9-speed drivetrain stuff gets rare then I'll already have 10-speed shifters. Looks like I might want a shift-mate.
    That doesn't make ANY sense at all.

    Why do you think the availability and pricing of 9 speed shifters does not affect the rest of the groupset? The reliability argument both drivetrain and shifting are bogus. Any shifting robustness over the 10 speed group is negated by the fact that you will have to run an extra shiftmate doodad on the end of the rear derailleur - complicating cable changes and introducing more problem points in shift problem diagnosis.

    It's not if/when 9 speed stuff gets rare. It's already happening and it will only continue to get worse. Nobody races on 9 speed anymore and nobody should buy into a group that's about to become obsolete.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonatageek View Post
    Not to mention if you want some really low granny gears you have to go 9 speed. Smallest front ring with 10 speed is a 30 tooth, 9 speed mountain gets you down to 22 tooth. Rear clusters go to 34 tooth with 9 speed.

    One of the rubs with how some of companies spec touring bikes, is those with 10 speed road groups do not have the low end to allow a fully loaded bike to make it up hills with a degree of comfort (or if steep enough, at all).

    9 speed will be with us for a long time to come. If or until mountain bikes go to 10 speed, 9 speed is not 'on its way out'.
    Yes, 9 speed is on it's way out. You obviously don't work in a shop. Just like when the the shimano max was 9 cogs, 8 speed stuff was hard to source from distributors. The same is happening with 9 and 10 now. If you want to mickey mouse with the used/ebay market that's your perogative.

    Fully loaded touring. Lol. Ride around really slowly everywhere, sounds like real fun.
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    Fully loaded touring. Lol. Ride around really slowly everywhere, sounds like real fun.
    You were doing just fine until you wrote this. Riding at full speed and seeing only the wheel in front of you isn't everyones idea of fun either. For many people bike touring is fun and a great way to travel and see far more than you would from a car or airplane.

    Sure it's slower, they don't care. What they do care about is having gearing low enough to climb hills with a loaded bike and 10-speed road cassettes generally don't do it. MTB cassettes are still 9-speed (SRAM's XX may correct that) so being able to use 9-speed cassettes is important to them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by greyghost_6 View Post
    YES you can! With NO additional hardware. If you are a descent mechanic tuning normal setups its a breeze. All you have to do is use the alternate cable routing on your rear derailleur (it is a shimano isn't it?) Go to http://www.sheldonbrown.com/dura-ace.html and see pictures for "Alternate Cable Routing" it says right at the bottom "This alternate cable routing will also let you use a 10-speed shifter with a 9-speed cassette." Its a little known secret and I get flamed every time because they don't believe me (or even Sheldon!) Maybe because its just too simple and I dind't spend money to make it work. Enjoy!

    Quite a find for me. I was recently discussing the fact the we are being forced to 10 speed stuff by Shimano when(in my opinion) 9 is easier to live with.
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
    ... Riding at full speed and seeing only the wheel in front of you isn't everyones idea of fun either. For many people bike touring is fun and a great way to travel and see far more than you would from a car or airplane.

    Sure it's slower, they don't care. What they do care about is having gearing low enough to climb hills with a loaded bike and 10-speed road cassettes generally don't do it. MTB cassettes are still 9-speed (SRAM's XX may correct that) so being able to use 9-speed cassettes is important to them.
    I completely agree. I wouldn't build a touring bike without 9-speed mountain gearing in the rear. And if you want to use brifters, the only option is 10-speed these days unless you monkey around with EBay. The alternate cable routing works perfectly for 10-speed brifters and a 9-speed drivetrain. Just need to make sure to use a road derailleur for the front- those aren't compatible.

    I don't see the mountain bike 9-speed cassettes going away soon. Heck, I can still get 7-speed MTB cassettes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post

    Fully loaded touring. Lol. Ride around really slowly everywhere, sounds like real fun.


    BTW, I'm having a custom built frame for commuting/light touring built right now. 9 speed drive train gives me a wide ranger of cassettes in the rear, longer lasting chain. We sourced a used 105 9 speed set of brifters for this bike. I can always go with new Shimano Tiagra if I want to stay with STI or shift to bar ends.

  23. #23
    Senior Member vredstein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    That doesn't make ANY sense at all.

    Why do you think the availability and pricing of 9 speed shifters does not affect the rest of the groupset? The reliability argument both drivetrain and shifting are bogus. Any shifting robustness over the 10 speed group is negated by the fact that you will have to run an extra shiftmate doodad on the end of the rear derailleur - complicating cable changes and introducing more problem points in shift problem diagnosis.

    It's not if/when 9 speed stuff gets rare. It's already happening and it will only continue to get worse. Nobody races on 9 speed anymore and nobody should buy into a group that's about to become obsolete.
    How complicated is it to route a cable through a Shiftmate? I've never heard of anyone having a shift problem with a properly installed Shiftmate. I've heard of countless problems with broken 10-speed chains.
    I'm not sure what sources you use, but the shop I work at has absolutely zero problems getting 9-speed cassettes and chains. Try this test-Type in r 9-speed cassette in any internet search engine, specify "shopping" if you want. I guarantee it will show they are anything but "rare".
    Add to this the fact that you can get them for $30 a piece. You can get two full sets of chains and cassettes for the price of one 10-speed chain and cassette. Stock up on five or six sets, and you're set for years. Ride this for years and then you can worry about upgrading to 15-speed.
    Last edited by vredstein; 09-28-09 at 01:25 PM.
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  24. #24
    Pleasurable Pain greyghost_6's Avatar
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    I think since Operator is used to working at a shop (since he flames us for not) he has been brain washed to buy only the newest 10 speed technology (probably at discount so he could tell others its "better") because shimano says it will make him faster. For the rest of us who arn't trying to save the world by biking the shiftmate or the cable trick should work just fine.
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  25. #25
    Council of the Elders billydonn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BengeBoy View Post


    BTW, I'm having a custom built frame for commuting/light touring built right now. 9 speed drive train gives me a wide ranger of cassettes in the rear, longer lasting chain. We sourced a used 105 9 speed set of brifters for this bike. I can always go with new Shimano Tiagra if I want to stay with STI or shift to bar ends.
    Range of casettes and stronger chain are pretty much what I had in mind... coupled with MTB RD of course. FWIW I did find some mint Ultegra 9-speed brifters for a good price, so the 10-speed brifter conversion won't be necessary. That said, I am not the least bit convinced that 9-speed stuff is an issue at all.

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