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School me on 8 spd STI

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School me on 8 spd STI

Old 03-15-16, 08:12 AM
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Ratzinger
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School me on 8 spd STI

I'm looking into doing an inexpensive flat-to-drop conversion for a friend. Just had a couple questions regarding the best choice for shifters.

Seems like the cheapest choice for new is Microshift SB-483 (Something like this)

Would you go for used Claris or Sora shifters, or new Microshift? Prices being generally equal.

I also potentially have a line on some 600/Ultegra 8 spd shifters. My feeling is to steer clear because of the age, but if they're in good condition, would that be a superior choice?

Any thoughts are welcome.
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Old 03-15-16, 08:14 AM
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I'd probably opt for new over used. That said, I'm running 8 speed Claris on one of my bikes. The shifting is rock solid.
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Old 03-15-16, 08:20 AM
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Any used STI brifter is a crap shoot, particularly old ones. I'd get the Microshift shifters. I have Microshift 10-speed levers on two bikes as part of Retroshift "brifters" and they have been flawless for 10,000 miles each so far. Incidentally, I saw an ad for Shimano Ultegra 8-speed barend shifters recently on Amazon for about $55 so that's also an alternative if your friend is ok with barends.

https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-SL-BS6...ed+shifter+set
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Old 03-15-16, 08:43 AM
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Thanks. Yeah my biggest wonder was about Microshift, having no experience or knowledge of them. Seems like that may be the way to go.
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Old 03-15-16, 08:58 AM
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The old 600/Ultegra STI is good stuff, but the ones I bought for $10 needed a rebuild. Not feeling like tackling it myself I sent them to that guy on ebay that does it. Here: Shimano 105 RX 100 RSX 600 7 or 8 Speed STI Lever Repair Rebuild One Pair | eBay So for about $80 total I got a set of great functioning (but still used) vintage STI. Honestly though, the only reason I used them is because they matched the other components on the bike and I wanted to keep it looking correct.

Downtube shifters are becoming my personal favorite way to shift a drop-bar bike, as long as I won't be using it for racing.

Don't forget Campy 10-speed brifters which are my personal favorite brifter for an 8-speed Shimano system. The front shifter has many clicks and works great with most FD setups I've used. Like these, but you can go all the way up to Record if you want: Campagnolo Veloce 10 Speed Silver Alloy Ergo Shifter Set | eBay

I have not used the Claris STI or Microshift.
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Old 03-15-16, 09:14 AM
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Whoa, kind of blows my mind that 10 speed Campy will work. That certainly does provide some more options. Thanks.
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Old 03-15-16, 11:57 AM
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If the front derailleur is a mtb style then STI levers designed for road bikes will not index properly. You need a road front derailleur.
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Old 03-15-16, 12:10 PM
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Have you considered bar end shifters? They're cheap, light and reliable. Plus, having friction shifting in the front eliminates the problems you might otherwise run into mixing a MTB front derailleur with road shifters.
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Old 03-15-16, 01:01 PM
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I'd go with the used 8-speed Ultegra STI shifters.

Very high quality parts, and capable of being rebuilt if necessary. Very worthly/worth the investment of a rebuild if necessary. Not like modern STI shifters.
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Old 03-15-16, 02:45 PM
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yep I would plum for new or bar end which are a personal favourite although that option still requires some brake levers, one thing to consider is the brakes if they are road style or cantilever your good but v brakes require a work around
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Old 03-15-16, 03:14 PM
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Originally Posted by headasunder View Post
yep I would plum for new or bar end which are a personal favourite although that option still requires some brake levers, one thing to consider is the brakes if they are road style or cantilever your good but v brakes require a work around
There are v-brake compatible road-style levers, like the Tektro RL520.
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Old 03-15-16, 03:20 PM
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I did this exact thing with a Cannondale Quick 5. I used Sora brifters that I found new on line.
It was a very simple conversion and I am super happy with the bike. I use it as my bad weather, getting
dirty bike and when I am going to ride all gravel with some steep stuff instead of my Felt Z-5.
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Old 03-15-16, 03:27 PM
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Those Chinese made shifters look suspiciously cheap. I'd go for a good used Ultegra/600. Also, if it's bad, do you have to ship it all the way back to China??
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