I have an 09 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc 29 that I got back in June. I've been riding it as much as I can but all the other bikes I've owned have had the Shimano Rapidfire style shifters - where you use the thumb and index finger to shift up and down.
The new bike, has "SRAM X-4, 8-speed trigger" - which uses the thumb for shifting up and down. I've tried to get used to it, but I just can't - I prefer the other style. The rear derailleur is a "SRAM X-5, med. cage".
I've been looking at replacing shifters, but can't seem to find which SRAM shifter I can use to replace the ones I have - if SRAM does in fact make one like I'm after.
However I noticed my rear cassette is only 8 - the RD-M662-SGS is 9. I'd need the CS-HG80 cassette sprocket as well. Will that fit on the back? Are the proper mounting holes available for derailleurs on the frame?
Sure, but isn't the HG-80 a 9-speed cassette? You'll need to install a 9-speed shifter and a RD that can handle 9 speeds as well, and a 9-speed chain.
IMHO, going to 9sp from 8sp doesn't get you anything really useful in mountain biking, and the 8sp stuff is more robust and cheaper. Your choice, though.