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Old 11-27-12, 12:44 PM   #1
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Tiagra triple front derailleur and Deore Rapid Fire (All 9 speed)

Can I match up a Tiagra (9 speed) front derailleur with a Shimano SL-M590 Deore Shifter Lever Set (9-Speed)? The cranks are Sugino XD Triple Crank 170mm 26/36/46. Thanks.
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Old 11-27-12, 12:48 PM   #2
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In a word, no. The back will be OK, but the mountain groups and the road groups in the Shimano family won't play together in front. They pull different amounts of cable for one shift click. Best to use a MTB front derailleur.
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Old 11-27-12, 12:51 PM   #3
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If you're really determined and you are willing to deal with a bit of chain rub in the low-low and high-high cases (the ones that should work), you can make it work, but it's much easier to just get a Shimano MTB front derailleur to go with the shifters.
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Old 11-27-12, 01:11 PM   #4
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In a word, no. The back will be OK, but the mountain groups and the road groups in the Shimano family won't play together in front. They pull different amounts of cable for one shift click. Best to use a MTB front derailleur.
Let me re-state this for clarity. mountain groups and the road groups in the Shimano family play together with the rear derailleur (accept mtb 10 speed), but the front derailleurs don't play with the other groups front derailleurs. Since you will be using a crank with an MTB large chainring (46T) you can simply use a 9 speed MTB front derailleur.
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Old 11-27-12, 08:05 PM   #5
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Let me re-state this for clarity. mountain groups and the road groups in the Shimano family play together with the rear derailleur (accept mtb 10 speed), but the front derailleurs don't play with the other groups front derailleurs. Since you will be using a crank with an MTB large chainring (46T) you can simply use a 9 speed MTB front derailleur.
+1. The "large" chainring isn't that much larger than Shimano's recommendations, so any Shimano MTB front derailleur should be fine. If you want to install larger, "road" chainrings (say 50 to 54 teeth), you would need a Shimano FR-R443 derailleur.
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Old 11-28-12, 08:13 AM   #6
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Let me re-state this for clarity. mountain groups and the road groups in the Shimano family play together with the rear derailleur (accept mtb 10 speed), but the front derailleurs don't play with the other groups front derailleurs. Since you will be using a crank with an MTB large chainring (46T) you can simply use a 9 speed MTB front derailleur.
To further muddy the waters, some people say that they can get a road front derailer to play nice(ish) with a mountain shifter but I've never been able to do it. A mountain front derailer is fairly cheap so I'd just go with that. You don't need...or even want...a high end Shimano front derailer of any kind for a triple. A Deore works better than the XT or XTR for much less money.
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Old 11-28-12, 09:31 AM   #7
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shimano makes a Tiagra front der. for flat handlebars.
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Old 11-28-12, 09:25 PM   #8
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shimano makes a Tiagra front der. for flat handlebars.
That's the FD-R443 or FD-R453. Shimano doesn't really identify it as a Tiagra- it's listed under "non-series components" in their catalogs.
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Old 11-28-12, 11:55 PM   #9
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I've got a road triple FD to work with a MTN shifter by setting the limit screws just right and getting the cable tension adjusted well. However, it's not ideal and is fiddly to set up well - probably not a good idea to try if you're not experienced at setting up FDs with compatible shifters already.

Because the MTN shifter pulls more cable than needed for the road FD, set the cable tension so that it is correct for the middle chainring. With the inner limit screw controlling the position for the small ring, the cable should go extra slack when shifted to that position. The outer position is hard. Setting the upper limit screw to the right position for the chain means that it is stopped before the shifter engages the last click, so you may have to ease off the upper limit screw to allow it to overshift a little, but not too much. As I said, it is a bit fiddly, but does work OK if you get it just right. However, it would be a lot easier to just buy a new FD.
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Old 11-29-12, 11:03 AM   #10
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The fact that it's 9-speed makes me wonder.

Back in the late 90's a common factory spec for flat bar tandems and some hybrids was to mate a mountain bike shifter with a road bike crankset and front derailleur. My daughter had a tandem that came from Burley that way and My wife had a hybrid that came that way from Specialized. Both shifted just fine.

If it was my bike I'd see if I could get it work to my satisfaction before I started spending money on different parts.
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