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  1. #1
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    Advice on swapping currently-owned brifters or buying new.

    I recently picked up a nice 1983 Trek 720, and I want to upgrade the bar-end shifters to brifters. The primary reason I would like brifters is that right now (and for the forseeable next few years) I use this bike
    to pull my daughter on her Burley (single speed) tag-a-long. With my daughter and the Burley, I have an extra 80-85 lbs on the back - like loaded touring with panniers that move - and not always in the right direction (laugh) .
    Though she is getting better at pedaling, she is often out of rhythm with my pedaling, so I really want to keep my hands on the bars. Prior to finding the Trek 720, I was using a 2007 Jamis Aurora, which I really liked, with one
    exception - toe overlap. When we would climb big hills, and I would slow down, i often found I was catching my toes on the front wheel as I tried to keep balance with her side to side shifts. However, I really liked the brifters and cross-brakes, as they allowed me to keep my hands on the tops of the bars, still manage the shifting and braking, and not have to move to the drops to shift.

    Here is my question. I could pull the tiagra 9-speed triple brifters and front der off the Jamis, put them on the trek, then sell the Jamis for whatever I can get out of it. OR, I could sell the Jamis as a complete bike - then buy new brifters (which of course, cost a lot more when bought alone vs as part of a bike package).

    I also have a similar option with my wife's 9-speed ultegra (6610) brifters. She has a 2001 Trek 2300 wsd (47cm) with full triple ultegra with only a couple of hundred miles on it. We got it just before we got married, stopped riding when she got pregnant, then went to a carbon bike with a more relaxed geometry when she returned to biking a couple of years later. So essentially, they are almost new ultegra 9-speed brifters.
    Would I do better to sell the 2300 as a whole, the buy new brifters (I really can't use any of the other parts off the 2300 for the touring bike, but could use the brifters; although it is my job to sell the bike, my dear wife may have a stronger opinion about selling the whole bike or sans the brifters, so I would need some knowledgeable back up that this is a valid plan. The thing I see is that new brifters alone are very expensive, and we already own these - but I am trying to minimize cost, as I do have another road bike (well, um, 2 really ).

    PS. Touring gurus who read this should not worry; I will hold onto my bar-end shifters in case I ever plan a cross-country tour - I can swap them out then (I had bar-ends on my previous touring bike, but lost it in a fire).

    Any thoughts from folks who may have some experience with buying/selling would be much appreciated. I am not sure if this question would fare better in a different forum, but thought I'd start here.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I wouldn't do it, because I don`t have any specific control problems, but if I was doing it, I would put the package/s on Craigs, and Kijiji, and say you have the bike/s without cranks, and brifters, and want to sell it for X or best offer. You can always reply to any specific offers as they come in, that you can't respond to their offers due to pending offers, which you hope is true. Ultimately this is a pretty weird sale, you just need the one person to get interested, but if you don`t have that person in your neighbourhood, it really doesn't mater what someone else thinks you should be able to sell this stuff for in some other area, or different market.

  3. #3
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    I think you'll have a tough time selling the Jamis if it doesn't have shifters. Probably easier to sell the whole bike, then use the proceeds from the sale to buy brifters. Or keep the Jamis and watch eBay or Craig's List for good deals on used brifters. Unfortunately, spring is really the ideal time to look for this sort of stuff: everyone will be upgrading to the latest and greatest stuff, so there'll be quite a few deals on used components...

  4. #4
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    This really seems to me to be a moderately short to medium term fix. I would take the 9sp shifters and other associated stuff to keep everything matched, off your wife's bike, which isn't being used, fit them to the 720, and hang your wife's bike.

    Then when your daughter is able to get a bit more co-ordinated or riding by herself, maybe go back to the bar-end shifters and refit everything back on your wife's bike.

    That way, you preserve the integrity of everything, and you don't go through the hassle of selling off stuff piecemeal. In addition, your wife might get back into riding again, and her bike will be there ready to go again.

    Just so left-field thoughts to consider.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  5. #5
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Found bar end shifters fine for 30 years.. , my upgrade was to Rohloff's hub from derailleurs
    trekking bars and their 2 cable grip-shifter.. so right next to the brake on the bars.

    but lots of people do the OR Coast on Road bikes with panniers, and Brifters, etc..
    so YMMV, as usual..

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by theflyingscott View Post
    I recently picked up a nice 1983 Trek 720, and I want to upgrade the bar-end shifters to brifters.

    I also have a similar option with my wife's 9-speed ultegra (6610) brifters. She has a 2001 Trek 2300 wsd (47cm) with full triple ultegra with only a couple of hundred miles on it. We got it just before we got married, stopped riding when she got pregnant, then went to a carbon bike with a more relaxed geometry when she returned to biking a couple of years later. So essentially, they are almost new ultegra 9-speed brifters.
    Thanks!
    The WSD is a rolling parts bin, go for it.

    Brad

  7. #7
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    I'd use the brifters that you have. Although it probably makes financial sense to sell the complete bike and buy a set or two of used brifters off Ebay, I'd sooner stay with brifters that you know the history of and know work. Buying used ones is kind of a crapshoot because you don't know their history. They can look brand new, but show shifting problems when mounted. New ones, as you say, are crazy-expensive.

    Assuming you have 9-speed Tiagra shifters, I will say that they are an under-rated model of brifters. I think they are as nice as Ultegras, plus they have an extra level of trim available on the front shifters that is nice to have.

    Part the bikes out, or sell with the missing pieces on Craigslist.

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