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  1. #1
    Senior Member climbhoser's Avatar
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    cheap 8 spd. downtube shifters?

    Ok, y'all were mighty helpful with the handlebars, so I'll try you this one. What is a good Shimano 8 spd. downtube shifter I can get for a reasonable price?

    Dura-Ace is like $60 and I see references to R400, but can't find any stateside. I would think there'd be 105 out there, but I don't come across it. Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by climbhoser View Post
    Ok, y'all were mighty helpful with the handlebars, so I'll try you this one. What is a good Shimano 8 spd. downtube shifter I can get for a reasonable price?

    Dura-Ace is like $60 and I see references to R400, but can't find any stateside. I would think there'd be 105 out there, but I don't come across it. Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks
    You might try Turin Bike Shop on Lincoln or Cycle Analyst on Pearl here in Denver. Both have a pretty good inventory of old parts.
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  3. #3
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    Well in my experience most downtube shifters are friction, and they should work with a variety of different speed cassettes or freewheels.

  4. #4
    AEO
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    Try ebay or CL to see if anyone is carrying some parts.
    Otherwise you can just set 6/7sp DT shifters into friction mode so that they will work with 8sp.

    I can tell from looking on ebay, there are plenty of cheap 8sp brifters, but not many DT shifters. It seems like some bike shops are selling off what they've collected.
    Last edited by AEO; 12-27-07 at 02:10 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Have you checked with your LBS?

    We can order the 8-speed Soras from Wilson, a popular warehouse.

  6. #6
    Senior Member climbhoser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darksiderising View Post
    Have you checked with your LBS?

    We can order the 8-speed Soras from Wilson, a popular warehouse.
    What about in QBP?

    Looks like I might be putting an order in and maybe they have some 8 speed DT shifters? Sora is fine, I just like DT.

    BTW, how much do those Soras run?

    Thanks

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheik_Yerbouti View Post
    Well in my experience most downtube shifters are friction, and they should work with a variety of different speed cassettes or freewheels.
    Yep. Forget about indexing, and you can get terrific DT shifters for about a buck at any thrift shop (Salvation Army, Good Will etc all have bikes, at least around here). If you can't learn to friction shift in three minutes, there's something wrong with you--indexing really isn't much of an advantage in everyday riding. I use it on one of my three main bikes because it can't be turned off, but the other two are all friction all the time just because I prefer them that way.

  8. #8
    Senior Member climbhoser's Avatar
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    I have seen Dura-Ace 8 speed index shifters, but I've been concerned that it won't be compatible with my XT rear der. Of course, they're also $60, but I might just have to bite it with those and take a hit on other components.

    I've used rear friction plenty...like it alright, and for most of my riding it does just fine, but I'm always looking for paradise

  9. #9
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by climbhoser View Post
    I have seen Dura-Ace 8 speed index shifters, but I've been concerned that it won't be compatible with my XT rear der. Of course, they're also $60, but I might just have to bite it with those and take a hit on other components.

    I've used rear friction plenty...like it alright, and for most of my riding it does just fine, but I'm always looking for paradise
    The rear derailer usually has no issues with any shifter in the Shimano brand. The fronts are a different story.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member climbhoser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    The rear derailer usually has no issues with any shifter in the Shimano brand. The fronts are a different story.

    Interesting! Can you just run the front on friction and be problem-less?

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    Rivendell sells their excellent "Silver" downtube shifters for $38 a pair. They work with ANY cogset, from five cogs to eight cogs, to ten cogs...what ever you have.

    They are friction shifters. I've taught friction shifting to a six year old...it took him fifteen minutes to get the hang of it, and then he was smoothly and instantly shifting from gear to gear. So, any adult out to be able to figure it out, with an hour or so of practice.

    After you learn to use friction shifters skillfully, indexed shifters will feel slow, clumsy, and clunky. And, there is a reason: indexed shifting IS slow, clumsy, and clunky compared with friction shifting.

    www.rivbikecom

    Just enter "shifters" in the search box on their opening page.

  12. #12
    Senior Member thehammerdog's Avatar
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    I bought a set on Nashbar last night for under $10..

    I needed a down tube shifter for the big ring and got a set on line for under $10.....included cables

  13. #13
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
    Rivendell sells their excellent "Silver" downtube shifters for $38 a pair. They work with ANY cogset, from five cogs to eight cogs, to ten cogs...what ever you have.

    They are friction shifters. I've taught friction shifting to a six year old...it took him fifteen minutes to get the hang of it, and then he was smoothly and instantly shifting from gear to gear. So, any adult out to be able to figure it out, with an hour or so of practice.

    After you learn to use friction shifters skillfully, indexed shifters will feel slow, clumsy, and clunky. And, there is a reason: indexed shifting IS slow, clumsy, and clunky compared with friction shifting.

    www.rivbikecom

    Just enter "shifters" in the search box on their opening page.
    I think I'm going to get a set of those Silver shifters go with a Suntour Superbe Pro set up. Seeing's how they're essentially a Suntour design, according to Grant.
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  14. #14
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by climbhoser View Post
    Interesting! Can you just run the front on friction and be problem-less?
    Dura Ace eight speed shifters won't index properly unless you use them with an eight speed or earlier (pre-1997) Dura Ace rear derailleur. There is an "alternate cable routing" (see Sheldon's site) technique that can be used to try and alter the derailleur movement slightly per shift if you're not using a pre-nine-speed Dura Ace derailleur, or you can simply run the shifters in friction mode. As far as indexing, pre-nine-speed Dura Ace is in its own little world.

    Here's Sheldon's article on Dura Ace compatibility:
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/dura-ace.html
    Last edited by well biked; 01-03-08 at 04:38 PM.

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