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Old 07-31-10, 05:00 PM   #1
williaty
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What Alternatives are there to Brifters?

More specifically, what alternatives are there to brifters other than downtube shifters and barcons?

I'm in the process of building a drop bar bike and I had planned on mounting DT shifters next to the hoods via Kelly Take Offs. I've found that Kelly has gone out of business for a second time and that kind of screws me over. I don't want brifters because of the expense and complexity. I don't want DT or barcons because I want the controls next to my hands.

Is there any other option?
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Old 07-31-10, 05:40 PM   #2
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Well, that kinda leaves you in a bind... Do you need indexing? Have you considered standalone MTB shifters?
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Old 07-31-10, 05:40 PM   #3
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In theory you could put trigger shifters up up on top of the drop bars. Maybe a bit like some cycle cross bikes with the second set of brake levers as well.
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Old 07-31-10, 05:41 PM   #4
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I would prefer indexing. MTB shifters become a problem with drop bars.

I'll go STI if I have to, I just would like to avoid it.
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Old 07-31-10, 06:20 PM   #5
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Maybe a chopper suicide shifter?
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Old 07-31-10, 06:21 PM   #6
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Maybe a chopper suicide shifter?
That would be freakin awesome. Jockey shifters FTMFW.
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Old 07-31-10, 06:46 PM   #7
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That would be freakin awesome. Jockey shifters FTMFW.
Hah! I knew it! Awesomesauce, man. You sound like you'd love a good Rat Rod bike... kindred spirits, and all that.

Haven't converted my chopper to a jockey shifter yet... would have to make one from scratch to work with the Sturmey 8-speed.
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Old 07-31-10, 06:50 PM   #8
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What's the matter with barcons? I've been using them for years, and swapped on an old pair to replace the "brifters" (man, that's a stupid word) on my main bike. if you don' t like them, you don't like them, but I'm never giving mine up.
Also, old-style MB thumbshifters aren't bad with drops. I have a pair on an old beater Trek (fenders, cross tires) that I ride in winter. Took a few rides to find a good position, but they're fine.
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Old 07-31-10, 06:51 PM   #9
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Paul's Thumbies are an option: http://www.paulcomp.com/thumbies.html
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Old 07-31-10, 08:07 PM   #10
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In theory you could put trigger shifters up up on top of the drop bars. Maybe a bit like some cycle cross bikes with the second set of brake levers as well.
A better way to do it would be to mount the triggers on a Minoura Spacebar. Search the forums for "Minoura Spaceba Hack".
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Old 08-12-10, 09:23 AM   #11
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I've used Suntour Command shifters:


and modified MTB trigger shifters:



The necessary modification is to get the mounting bracket reamed out from 7/8" (MTB diameter) to 15/16" (road diameter). A buddy of mine who has a machine shop did it in a second.

This works great for me. The triggers end up perfectly positioned for shifting from the hoods. From the drops, you upshift by bending up the bottom knuckle of your thumb. Downshifts from the drops require moving your hands--but you'd have to move your hands to downshift with any other shifters except brifters, anyway, so that's no biggy.

The bike is an '04 Specialized Sirrus. The drop bars are from a late-'70s bike. I've never done this on a bike with a more modern bend.
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