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-   -   Brifters vs. Downtube shifters (http://www.bikeforums.net/road-cycling/936553-brifters-vs-downtube-shifters.html)

RJM 03-04-14 08:17 AM

If reaching for a downtube lever is dangerous, you probably have balance issues. I've ridden downtube for years and never once thought them dangerous.

Duane Behrens 03-04-14 08:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by merlinextraligh (Post 16544696)
To throw a wrench in here, have you thought about going used? For $400, you should be able to get a pretty nice used bike in good shape.

Just as an example: http://jacksonville.craigslist.org/bik/4343098726.html

Bump. I just finished a frame-off restoration of an old road bike. New front and rear wheel bearings, new bottom bracket bearings, new cables, new chain, new powder coat paint and decals. Etc. The bike is perfect and is of the "new" quality seen 34 years ago. Better everything, IMO. About $300 invested in the restoration, and that's probably about what it's worth if I were to sell it. Go find one like that if you can. :-)

redlude97 03-04-14 12:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RJM (Post 16546836)
If reaching for a downtube lever is dangerous, you probably have balance issues. I've ridden downtube for years and never once thought them dangerous.

No ones arguing that really. What people are saying is that having to reach down to a DT shifter or having to reach up to the hoods isn't a big deal either way, so to argue against the 2300 shifters because of the thumb shifter in favor of DT doesn't make sense. There can be other valid reasons but that isn't one of them

iamtim 03-04-14 12:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16545126)
You get to the point where you want to ride in the drops, you throw them away and buy something new.

YOU might do that. Others don't. I rode my 8 speed SORA shifters for years and years. For what it's worth, with a simple twist of my wrist I *could* reach the thumb paddle from the drops and did it all the time.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16545126)
And part of your statement was about safety. Brifters do not improve safety.

In and of themselves, you're right. However, ANYTHING which keeps a riders hands on the bars and their attention focused on the road is more safe, in practice, than is something which does not. Even cat 2 track, cat 3 road racers will shimmy a bit if they hit an unexpected pothole or their tire gets caught in a groove with only one hand on the handlebars... imagine what that must be like for us riders who haven't advanced to those lofty heights and earned better equipment?

StanSeven 03-04-14 12:27 PM

The argument about not shifting from the drops is weak. The majority of riders spend most time on the hoods or bar tops and not in the drops. I've seen numbers like 20% of the time is average. If someone is riding in the drops much more frequently, most likely your bars are way too high.

rumrunn6 03-04-14 12:32 PM

anyone want to discuss pros/cons of cross top brake levers and taking your hands off the hoods in most circumstances to brake from the drops even though mild braking can be done from the hoods? :-)

RollCNY 03-04-14 12:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by redlude97 (Post 16547615)
No ones arguing that really. What people are saying is that having to reach down to a DT shifter or having to reach up to the hoods isn't a big deal either way, so to argue against the 2300 shifters because of the thumb shifter in favor of DT doesn't make sense. There can be other valid reasons but that isn't one of them

Quote:

Originally Posted by StanSeven (Post 16547705)
The argument about not shifting from the drops is weak. The majority of riders spend most time on the hoods or bar tops and not in the drops. I've seen numbers like 20% of the time is average. If someone is riding in the drops much more frequently, most likely your bars are way too high.

I think the only one making that as a principal argument is Brian. Most of the other DT votes (mine included) had nothing to do with that.

RollCNY 03-04-14 12:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16547689)

In and of themselves, you're right. However, ANYTHING which keeps a riders hands on the bars and their attention focused on the road is more safe, in practice, than is something which does not.

No offense, but I disagree with this. I have seen more crashes, especially with newer riders, based upon an unrelenting death grip on the bars than I have ever seen from one handed riding. And I don't recall DT shifters in anyway causing my eyes or attention to leave the road. The shifters were unerringly in the same location that I left them, much like my water bottle and jersey pockets. I don't need to see them to use them.

You can recommend the 2300 for many valid reasons, but safety seems like an alarmist, less than sensible direction.

iamtim 03-04-14 12:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RollCNY (Post 16547749)
No offense, but I disagree with this.

None taken. :)

shoota 03-04-14 01:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RollCNY (Post 16547749)
I have seen more crashes, especially with newer riders, based upon an unrelenting death grip on the bars than I have ever seen from one handed riding.

I can't imagine some of the new riders I've seen lately try to learn with DT shifters. Goodness, I would try to be miles away from them.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:33 PM

Man there are a lot of strong opinions about this... Eh. No skin off my nose. Have fun with your new bike, OP. It's an excellent hobby and sport.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16547689)
YOU might do that. Others don't. I rode my 8 speed SORA shifters for years and years. For what it's worth, with a simple twist of my wrist I *could* reach the thumb paddle from the drops and did it all the time.
...

Good for you. Pat on the back. I stand by my original recommendations.

Also, the trick to not shimmying when hitting unexpected potholes or grooves is to not let potholes and grooves get to you unexpectedly.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by StanSeven (Post 16547705)
The argument about not shifting from the drops is weak. ...

There's a big difference between dropping a hand to the downtube (lowering your center of gravity) in a natural motion to flick a big and easily locatable (without looking) lever and letting go of the bar to mash a tiny little lever (I'd wager that most need to use their eyes to locate if they are in the drops) attached to the thing that steers your bike. You might get away with it if you are a casual recreational touring rider who doesn't get wrapped up in hard efforts, but once you start really pushing your limits, you will not be happy with the Sora style thumb lever. I'll admit, most riders are, in fact, casual recreational touring type riders, but this is what I mean when I say there is a skill-ceiling to those types of levers.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shoota (Post 16547877)
I can't imagine some of the new riders I've seen lately try to learn with DT shifters. Goodness, I would try to be miles away from them.

And you think they are better off with Sora style thumb shifters? These riders are gripping their bars so hard they can't even actuate a lever that's right under their thumb!

shoota 03-04-14 01:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547935)
And you think they are better off with Sora style thumb shifters? These riders are gripping their bars so hard they can't even actuate a lever that's right under their thumb!

Hey now I didn't say that. I'm just commenting on how much scarier they would be.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16547689)
... Even cat 2 track, cat 3 road racers...

You keep saying this as if it's an epithet. Can you say "reverse snobbery"? I have a lot of experience riding bikes of the road variety. Like everyone ever, I started from a beginner status. It's just that I've progressed further than most in this sport/hobby. I don't think that invalidates my opinions, analyses, and lessons learned. Inexperience, on the other hand, probably does invalidate opinions. Just say'n.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 01:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shoota (Post 16547952)
Hey now I didn't say that. I'm just commenting on how much scarier they would be.

When I read your comment, I was thinking of my mom. I rode with her once and it scared the crap out of me ;). She doesn't ride anymore.

shoota 03-04-14 02:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547958)
When I read your comment, I was thinking of my mom. I rode with her once and it scared the crap out of me ;). She doesn't ride anymore.

Same here when my mom was on her DT shifter Cdale. She just recently bought a Trek Boone but I haven't seen her since she got it to see if she is any more stable. I don't think she could be any less stable lol :/

iamtim 03-04-14 02:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547935)
And you think they are better off with Sora style thumb shifters?

Yes.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547935)
These riders are gripping their bars so hard they can't even actuate a lever that's right under their thumb!

And you think "those riders" are better off having to take their hands off the bars and reach down to shift?

iamtim 03-04-14 02:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547904)
Also, the trick to not shimmying when hitting unexpected potholes or grooves is to not let potholes and grooves get to you unexpectedly.

Well, when all riders are omniscient as you must be, then it won't be a concern.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 02:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16548002)
...
And you think "those riders" are better off having to take their hands off the bars and reach down to shift?

They don't know how to ride yet. At that skill level, there is no difference between one style shifter and another.

In fact, they are probably best off on a single speed so they can figure balance and braking before they move onto shifting. Best one can do in that situation is fix their drivetrain in a middling gear and not have them shift until they know how to balance. I'd go so far as to lock the derailleur in place until they have the skills to move on to shifting.

And why the extraneous quotes around "those riders"? Are you still hung up on me "flouting" my experience? I have a lot of experience with road bikes. Get over it.

iamtim 03-04-14 02:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547953)
You keep saying this as if it's an epithet.

It's in your sig. I figured it was there because you wanted it noticed.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547953)
I have a lot of experience riding bikes of the road variety.

And in all of your experience, you're muddling yourself in "one true way-ism". Your way must be the right way because it's how it is for you, and everyone else must be wrong. I'm not engaging in reverse snobbery, I'm trying to point out actual snobbery. I'm not saying you're across the board wrong, I'm sure there are MANY people who feel and ride exactly like you do. But you need to make allowances for the people out there who aren't like you, who aren't safe when they let go of the bars to shift, and who don't have all the riding experience you have.

Maybe at some point "those riders" can work up to the level you're at. But until then, there are some riders for whom Sora/2203 brifters are the Right Choice and DT shifters are decidedly the wrong choice. If you can't see that through all of your experience, then we have nothing more to talk about.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 02:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16548012)
Well, when all riders are omniscient as you must be, then it won't be a concern.

Well... perhaps it looks like omniscience some... But it's really just eyeballs and knowing what to look for.

Brian Ratliff 03-04-14 02:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iamtim (Post 16548037)
...
And in all of your experience, you're muddling yourself in "one true way-ism". Your way must be the right way because it's how it is for you, and everyone else must be wrong. I'm not engaging in reverse snobbery, I'm trying to point out actual snobbery. I'm not saying you're across the board wrong, I'm sure there are MANY people who feel and ride exactly like you do. But you need to make allowances for the people out there who aren't like you, who aren't safe when they let go of the bars to shift, and who don't have all the riding experience you have.

Maybe at some point "those riders" can work up to the level you're at. But until then, there are some riders for whom Sora/2203 brifters are the Right Choice and DT shifters are decidedly the wrong choice. If you can't see that through all of your experience, then we have nothing more to talk about.

Wow. Get over yourself.

I don't have to make any such allowances. What I write are just recommendations; from my experience, I thought that was implied (it's a discussion forum, after all). I'm here on the internet. It's just words. Take them or leave them.

BillyD 03-04-14 02:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff (Post 16547888)
Man there are a lot of strong opinions about this....

It's the 41.

And to make matters worse, it's winter.


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