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I've just about had it with my SRAM Red Drive Train!

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I've just about had it with my SRAM Red Drive Train!

Old 10-12-09, 02:09 PM
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Rockrivr1
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I've just about had it with my SRAM Red Drive Train!

As the winter months in New England turned into spring earlier this year I started looking for a new road bike. After a lengthy search that included a lot of test rides I bought a Felt Z25. It just fit me better then the Treks, Cannondales, Specialized, etc' that I tried. It came with a good setup, which included a full SRAM Red Drive Train.

As I started riding this bike last spring I had to adjust the rear derailer a lot. It would start to skip in the 3rd gear area no matter if I was in the upper or lower crank. At first I thought it was just the SRAM cables stretching. I would adjust it so the skipping would stop, ride for a week or so and the skipping would return. I started to think it was the due to the coating on the SRAM cables that were somehow slipping and causing the problem, so I changed out the cables. Didn't help. After giving the new cables enough time to stretch, the same problem kept happening. Every week or so I'd have to adjust the rear derailer. Finally gave up and just dealt with it. It's not all that hard to adjust

As the summer started to wain I was on a ride and attempted to shift to the upper crank. Somehow the chain grabbed my SRAM Red Front Derailer and bent the crap out of it. I was able to bend it back into some working order as I was 50 miles away from home. I took it to my LBS, who immediately changed out the derailer for a new one. But as they were changing it out they noticed the mounting bracket for the front derailer was also bent and there was some strain on the pins that mount into the carbon fiber frame. The LBS sent my frame out and I got a new frame from Felt within 2 days. Great service there.

So everything gets put back together and another month goes by with me riding a lot and tuning the rear derailer every week or so. So I go out riding this morning and as I'm shifting to the upper crank I feel the chain grab the front derailer. This time though I immediately stop pedaling and back pedal a bit. Luckily nothings bent, but geez, why does that keep happening. So I do a little research today and find out that the front derailer issue is actually a known issue with this component. To make it light the metal is soft and easily bendable. Go figure.

At this point I think I've had enough of the SRAM Red drive train. I'm seriously thinking of removing them and installing SRAM Force instead. I'm not serious enough that a few extra ounces will make any difference in my ride what so ever. I'm thinking this may fix both of my problems.

Anyone else experience these issues with this drive train?
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Old 10-12-09, 02:43 PM
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A lot of people dislike the Red FD and look for something else. What you describe as skipping is not common. Chain skip is most often used to describe the case of a chain staying on the intended cog, but the chain skips over the teeth under a heavy load. If the chain moves to a different cog (usually smaller) it's referred to as ghost shifting. Ghost shifting can occur due to a cable friction problem, but you have to pay attention to whether a shift actually fails to execute, so you tap the finger lever again to make it shift, then later get another shift, when the friction is overcome.

A good mechanic should be able to correct this, assuming that the shifter is not defective in some way.

Last edited by DaveSSS; 10-13-09 at 07:43 AM.
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Old 10-12-09, 03:35 PM
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I'd also want to make sure someone has checked the derailluer hanger alignment before jumping into new parts. Ten speed drivetrains are very sensitive to improper allignment and sometimes it's only evident over a narrow range of the cassette.
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Old 10-12-09, 06:51 PM
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Just a thought

I bought a Team Scatantte with a DA drive train. I was have issues with front derailuer not shifting all into the large ring and made many adjustments. It seemed no matter what I did the chain would slide off and the problem got worse the more I rode. Having been a bike mechanic in my other life, I was truly perplexed by this one. Finally I through in the towel and brought the bike to Performance. After the third mechanic trying to figure this out, I suggested checking the bottom bracket. Sure enough the crankset was not fully tightened and was slipping sideways causing the irregualar shifts. I thought Performance did a good job tuning the bike when I bought it, but who would the crank was not fully tightened.
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Old 10-12-09, 07:26 PM
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There's a metric ton of Red locally and I've yet to hear any complaints other than it being a bit noisy due to the hollow cassette. If I ever end up in a position to upgrade, Red is first on my list due to all the positive feedback everyone running it has to say about it.
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Old 10-13-09, 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by ScrubJ View Post
There's a metric ton of Red locally and I've yet to hear any complaints other than it being a bit noisy due to the hollow cassette. If I ever end up in a position to upgrade, Red is first on my list due to all the positive feedback everyone running it has to say about it.
I've read lots of complaints about the FD and the chainrings.

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/sho...d.php?t=144816

The post about the crank/BB being loose is a good thing to check. If the crank moves to the right, that could wipe out a FD quickly. The culprit there is the left crankarm not staying tight.
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