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9 speed availability

Old 07-06-17, 11:49 AM
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9 speed availability

I recently replaced my 9 speed triple crankset and was surprised at the lack of choice.

I understand that 9 speed is being phased out and was wondering if I should stock up or prepare for an inevitable "upgrade" to 10 or 11 speed.
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Old 07-06-17, 12:07 PM
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Genuine question, why does the number of cogs in the cassette limits the choice of crankset?
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Old 07-06-17, 12:16 PM
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It depends on how you feel about bar end shifters. I'm a fan of 9 speed and you can still get decent cassettes and chains. Nice 10 speed derailleurs are still out there and work fine with 9 speed. The problem is shifters. It's been years since there have been new mid range or better Shimano 9 speed brifters. Bar ends and their derivatives are all that's still available. Same is happening with 10 speed, no new 105 or better and NOS is drying up. So skip 10 speed if you have to change. You always want a cassette and chain or two in reserve, just for convenience, but you don't want to be left with a bunch when you have to move on.
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Old 07-06-17, 01:12 PM
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Why buy low to middle range 10/11 kit when you can easily and conveniently source higher quality 9sp components, for arguably lower price points?

eBay

If that doesn't appeal to you look into Microshift's offerings. They cover 6-modern speeds
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Old 07-06-17, 01:14 PM
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Nice 9-speed parts are being phased out (or at least produced in lower quantities) because in general, people buying nice parts are doing so for newer bikes. That's part of your problem, but another factor is that triple cranksets are generally out of fashion, largely being replaced by compact doubles.

With cranksets, you can generally go up or down a speed or two without adversely affecting shifting, so if you find a nice 10-speed triple, it ought to work for you.

But cranksets generally aren't consumables. They can last a lifetime, so long as you can find replacements for the parts that do wear out, like chainrings and bottom brackets.
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Old 07-06-17, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by asmac
I recently replaced my 9 speed triple crankset and was surprised at the lack of choice.

I understand that 9 speed is being phased out and was wondering if I should stock up or prepare for an inevitable "upgrade" to 10 or 11 speed.
I wonder the same thing, as my bike has 3 x 9 Tiagra. But a quick search of the internet suggests Sugino still makes the triple crankset that came stock on my bike, 9 speed chains, cassettes, and derailleurs are cheap and ubiquitous, as are 9 speed brifters.

As far as Shimano supporting 9 speed, just my guess, but I think 9 speed will be around for at least another 5 years, and more likely 10. Why? For one, the number of entry level road bikes sold dwarfs the number of high end road bikes. And those entry level bikes are 8 and 9 speed. That is a lot of 9 speed bikes that may need replacement parts in a few years. I doubt Shimano will drop both 8 AND 9 speed, therefore I suspect 9 speed brifters will be around for quite awhile.
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Old 07-06-17, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2
As far as Shimano supporting 9 speed, just my guess, but I think 9 speed will be around for at least another 5 years, and more likely 10...
I agree with you and think that Shimano (and others) will keep supplying some 9-speed parts for a number of years, but those new 9-speed parts aren't going to be high-end ones. If you need replacements for old Ultegra 9-speed parts, for example, you'll need to find them used or new-old-stock. If you replace with new parts, they'll be from downlevel groups like Sora. (Not that Sora stuff doesn't work, but the fit & finish arguably aren't as nice.)
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Old 07-06-17, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by asmac
I recently replaced my 9 speed triple crankset and was surprised at the lack of choice.

I understand that 9 speed is being phased out and was wondering if I should stock up or prepare for an inevitable "upgrade" to 10 or 11 speed.
Wouldn't hurt to get another set of the stock chainrings while you still can. I'd expect the cranks themselves to last a long time.
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Old 07-06-17, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by SkyDog75
I agree with you and think that Shimano (and others) will keep supplying some 9-speed parts for a number of years, but those new 9-speed parts aren't going to be high-end ones. If you need replacements for old Ultegra 9-speed parts, for example, you'll need to find them used or new-old-stock. If you replace with new parts, they'll be from downlevel groups like Sora. (Not that Sora stuff doesn't work, but the fit & finish arguably aren't as nice.)
I guess it comes down to this. Either downgrade to Sora, buy NOS or used on Ebay, or upgrade to 2 x 11, or 1 x 11 (or 12).
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Old 07-06-17, 03:58 PM
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An interesting question.

Way back, during the last century even, I owned an Ultegra equipped road bike and an Ultegra equipped tandem. During the 2,000's I bartered wrenching at a bike shop for bike parts. Since 9-speed Ultegra components were being phased out I decided to acquire a set of brifters just to keep as spares. Ultimately, my son and I built up a spare road bike from spare parts including that brifter set. The Klein road bike and the Santana tandem are still in the family and ride-able.

I don't worry about stuff like that any more.
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Old 07-06-17, 07:38 PM
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In my case it's XT and the only crankset I could find was Deore. Not a huge difference but it got me wondering if it might disappear altogether.

If a shifter needs replacement that could be a problem. Otherwise should be OK.


Probably will pick up a couple of large chainrings and then wait for 3x12.

Last edited by asmac; 07-06-17 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 07-06-17, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by SylvainG
Genuine question, why does the number of cogs in the cassette limits the choice of crankset?
So I googled it and got my answer. It's basically the distance between the chainrings that is shallower on a 10 and 11 speed crankset (thinner chain) than on the 9 speed crankset.

Question becomes, if you get a crankset with the same number of bolts, can't you replace the spacers on the new crankset with the spacers on the old one to get the correct distance between chainrings?
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Old 07-06-17, 08:03 PM
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Yes. You can add a chainring spacer to a 10 speed crankset to fit 9 speed chains. Also, if you like 9 speed, just keep riding it. Flush your shifters with solvent if they get sticky. Relube as necessary. Keep an eye on Craigslist for 9 speed bikes and salvage the parts off them. When the time comes, upgrade to 11 speed and be done with it.
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Old 07-06-17, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by asmac
In my case it's XT and the only crankset I could find was Deore. Not a huge difference but it got me wondering if it might disappear altogether.

If a shifter needs replacement that could be a problem. Otherwise should be OK.


Probably will pick up a couple of large chainrings and then wait for 3x12.
Shimano still sells 3x11 XT and XTR. Only the road groups have dropped the triples.
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Old 07-06-17, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by gsa103
Shimano still sells 3x11 XT and XTR. Only the road groups have dropped the triples.
You can also get the triple in Trekking flavor, which is essentially a road groupset but geared toward touring. I have the 610 48-36-26 and love it.
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Old 07-07-17, 01:28 AM
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Both Sora and Claris was just revamped and both are still 9 and 8 speed. Maybe next time they will move to 10 and 9 or get new pull ratios like Tiagra 4700 did, but for the foreseeable future Im sure parts will be available. In fact I was looking at a Trek 1.2 and a Giant, both with Sora, and Im not afraid parts resources will dry up. Maybe in rich countries like the US "everybody" rides 11 speed, but Im sure many places have less average disposable income and Im sure Shimano will want to have product available for them (and the budget minded cyclist, like me) as well. One thing i have noticed though is that the best 9 and 10 cassettes tend to all of a sudden only be available in Ultegra. Imo that the biggest knock against the 9 and 10 speed. Then you might as well ride 11 speed 105. Still I believe both current Sora and Tiagra are fine options.

Last edited by Racing Dan; 07-07-17 at 01:36 AM.
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Old 07-07-17, 09:30 AM
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I'm surprised by the level of support that still exists for 7-speed, for that matter.
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