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Old 09-22-08, 08:45 PM   #1
Raven87
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Cannodale Adventure 3 vs Trek 7200 - shifter questions

If you've read any of my other posts, you know I'm shopping for a new bike. Here is my latest experience (also posted in the General Cycling forum)...

I rode two different '09 hybrids today; the Cannondale Adventure 3 (priced at $599 at my LBS) and the Trek 7200 (priced at $480 at the trusty LBS). I wanted to ride a 7300 but none in stock; available at ~$600 I was told and they could get one in a day or two. I would probably buy the 7300 given the upgrades on it versus the 7200.

I rode the Trek first and loved it. It was comfortable and the slightly less upright seating versus the comfort bikes I've ridden (Specialized, Townie, Raleigh, and Jamis) was no problem at all. Both bikes had 700c tires and felt equal in that respect.

Rode the Cannondale next and was somewhat surprised by two things - the shifter for the front gears (1-2-3) and the seat. While the Trek's preload was adjusted to compensate for my size, not enough could be dialed in on the Cannondale (according the salesman after trying) to keep me from bottoming out. This in itself is not an issue because I will probably put a non-suspended post on anyways.

But the shifter thing had me puzzled. On the Trek, it shifted quickly and flawlessly in any gear. Both used grip shifters (I don't recall the exact details of the components) but when I was shifting the Cannodale for the front gears, there were 'detents' in between the gears which, if I did not shift quickly from say, 1 to 2, and go through the extra 'clicks' on the shifter itself (and you could see the gear indicator move with each 'click' between the numbers) the chain would be clicking impatiently until the derailleur was lined up completely.

Now, I am a HUGE Cannodale fan havig gotten such great service from my M500 over the years but today's experience was not what I was expecting. My M500 has trigger shifts so this kind of thing is not possible - is the grip shifter the reason for the slow front gear change?

Is this normal or was something not right on the bike? I asked the young salesman and he said it did not sound right to him and that they would look at it but I really do not know if he had all that much technical knowledge.

So - help? Is this normal and thereby nothing or is it something that can be easily corrected? Experiences with either bike?

Any and all replies will be appreciated! Thank you!
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Old 09-23-08, 04:41 AM   #2
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It is normal for many left side twist shifters to have as many clicks as the right side.........they get to use the same mechanism that way. In the past, SRAM has called that "micro adjust" or some such marketing label. It is effectively the same as friction shifting but with small descrete steps.

Once you learn that 1-2 is 4 clicks and 2-3 is 3 or 4 clicks, then you are home free. (takes about 1 1/2 rides). The advantage however is that with 1 or 2 clicks in either direction from the "in gear" position, you can trim the front derailleur to avoid chain rub. The shifting will not be slow once you realize that you need to grab 4 clicks at a time.

The newer SRAM systems seem to be coming out with true friction left side shifters. IMHO 6 of one 5 of another.
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Old 09-23-08, 07:51 AM   #3
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Ratchet vs indexed, is what you experienced. Indexed shifting = 1 click 1 gear(that's the theory anyway), ratchet shifting is just the detents on the shifter that make the click and move and hold the derailleur in place. So you may have to move the ratchet shifter several clicks to actually shift gears.
You'll find ratchet shifters on lower level front shifters, if you'll find them for a rear shifter on really cheap older bikes.
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Old 09-23-08, 08:04 AM   #4
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Not confined to lower level at all. All top of the line SRAM front shifters work this way. Some of the prefered antique shifters on classic bikes also work this way.
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Old 09-23-08, 05:05 PM   #5
Tom Bombadil
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What maddmaxx said on the shifters. You get used to it very quickly.

I haven't yet ridden one of the new upper-line 7x00 hybrids, the ones with the much lighter weight mini-suspension, elastomer short-travel bumper. The 7300 & up have them. Looks like a good idea to me. Most hybrids don't need much of a suspension, but a little bit of one does help smooth out the ride. Getting rid of those heavy forks for the "SPA" suspension makes sense.

I did once ride a Klein road bike that had one on the rear stay. It helped. Klein developed the design and as Trek owns Klein, they have now incorporated it into some of their bikes.
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Old 09-23-08, 09:26 PM   #6
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Your perceived problem is really an advantage. Once you become familiar with the number of clicks needed to make a clean shift, you will have no problem. But you will soon find that the extra clicks allow you to move the front derailleur to the best location to prevent the chain from rubbing the derailleur as you move from one end of the cassette to the other. This ability is sorely lacking with pure indexed front shifters.

Indexed front shifting is one of the worst and most useless "advancements" in modern bike technology.
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