I have three deraillieurs in my component drawer; a Shimano STX, a Shimano Deore LX, and a Suntour X1. Which is best for my tourer? I'm guessing the Deore, right? THat beats an STX? But what about the Suntour. It came with my second hand touring frame. Anyone know how good it is?
It really boils down to which shifters you're using.
STX was Shimano's "good" quality component line in the mid-90s. It was superseded when they went to the XTR-XT-LX designations about 10 years ago. I believe you're right, LX was designed to be a notch higher on the quality scale..... but in practice, I can't see that you'd notice the difference. Especially if you're working with used parts (are they used?) -- then the best part is probably the one with the least wear.
I don't know the Suntour X1 specifically, but Suntour and Shimano use(d) different transfer ratios on their derailleurs. If you've got indexed shifters, then you'll want to use a derailleur to match. Maybe you're lucky enough to have Suntour shifters in your parts box -- then use the Suntour derailleur. Personally, i love old Suntour stuff. Smooth as butter, and easily serviceable.
Without knowing which shifters you've got, i'd assume they're Shimano indexed. Then i'd go with the LX derailleur. It's a standard on many touring and mountain bikes, which pretty much indicates the quality.
If you have friction shifters, you can use any brand derailleur matched with them.
As i said, i don't think you'd notice any difference between these three derailleurs, both in shift quality and longevity. These are all good mid-to-upper range components, and should handle the task equally well. Things that might tip your decision are weight, dust boots, smooth running pulleys, and -- if they're used -- any wear.
Thanks for that. Yes they are used. They're off various bikes I've had, though none are that used.The shifters I have at my disposal are Shimano 8 speed bar end shifters, modern SRAM 7 speed thumb shifters, and some very old Deore Shimano friction thumb shifter. I could use any with the friction shifters and the thumb shifters.
I was hoping for some info on the the Suntour. I might pop over to the vintage forum.