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SRAM Rival Front Shifter - Loud As ####

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SRAM Rival Front Shifter - Loud As ####

Old 04-18-10, 06:57 PM
  #1  
Servo888
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SRAM Rival Front Shifter - Loud As ####

Hello all,

Well I'm finishing up my Rival build; this is my first brifter build, so I'm pretty excited. I've been riding downtubes for the past two years, and even though downtubes are pretty neat, I figured it was time to upgrade. At any rate, the front derailleur takes significantly more effort to engage compared to the rear. Secondly, when I shift from large to small, there is an intermediary step. So I have to double tap to shift from the larger to the smaller (ie: I'm riding on the large sprocket, click once, it makes a loud bang, then click one more time, one more loud bang, and it's on the smaller sprocket). So it's working... It's just loud... Is this normal?
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Old 04-18-10, 07:45 PM
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I spent some more time with the system. The shifter is working fine, there are suppose to be two position (clicks) to shift to the lower gear. But it looks like the issue is that the front derailleur is too stiff. It takes a substantial amount of force to move to the large sprocket. I double checked the instructions, and there's no way to adjust tension on the front derailleur.

Hmm...
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Old 04-18-10, 07:53 PM
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You have the cable installed on the correct side of the bolt, don't you? Install it on the back side, and it will take a lot more force to move - and it won't shift correctly.

Otherwise, the front derailleur IS harder to shift than the rear. Always has been, due to the strong spring needed to shift it back to the inner chainring.
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Old 04-19-10, 07:14 AM
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
You have the cable installed on the correct side of the bolt, don't you? Install it on the back side, and it will take a lot more force to move - and it won't shift correctly.

Otherwise, the front derailleur IS harder to shift than the rear. Always has been, due to the strong spring needed to shift it back to the inner chainring.
Yeah, it's connected correctly (checked on Parktool's website, as well as the manual). It's kind of weird. I have rapid fire shifters on my mountain bike, and those take much less effort to move the front derailleur. I'm going to try to lubricate the derailleur tonight, and see if that helps.

Grr.
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Old 04-19-10, 09:58 AM
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I've used a few different types of Rapid Fire shifters (Acera, Altus, Deore, a few others I can't recall) and as you've noted, some are very easy to shift at the front. Some not as much. All of the road brifters that I have used have required considerably more force to shift the front though, with my Ultegra 6500 brifters taking the cake for most force required.
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Old 05-09-10, 08:23 AM
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My experience with SRAM Force 2009 -

I have a similar story to share - My front shifter takes considerable amount of force and make annoying noise while shifting from bigger to smaller ring. It was worse until I adjusted cable tension on FD. But, the uneasiness and noise remains though subdued a little.
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Old 05-09-10, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by jerseyten View Post
My experience with SRAM Force 2009 -

I have a similar story to share - My front shifter takes considerable amount of force and make annoying noise while shifting from bigger to smaller ring. It was worse until I adjusted cable tension on FD. But, the uneasiness and noise remains though subdued a little.
The next person who says that they've adjusted 'cable tension' gets shot into f#$%ing orbit. Tension is controlled by the spring in the derailleur. It is not adjustable. You are adjusting cable LENGTH.
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Old 05-09-10, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
The next person who says that they've adjusted 'cable tension' gets shot into f#$%ing orbit. Tension is controlled by the spring in the derailleur. It is not adjustable. You are adjusting cable LENGTH.
Interesting point. I agree that the tension when the front derailleur is in the outer position does not change (it is determined by the spring strength). However, the cable tension when the front derailleur is in the inner position CAN be changed. The cable could be completely slack and hanging loose, with just the limit screw holding the derailleur in place, or the cable itself could be holding the derailleur in place, with the limit screw doing nothing. In between these extremes are various degrees of cable tension, which can be measured by seeing how far you can pull the bare cable away from the downtube when the shifter and derailleur are in the inner position.

In addition, you say that people should talk about "adjusting cable LENGTH" - that is true if you undo the pinch bolt and pull more or less cable through. However, if you make the adjustment by turning an adjusting barrel then you are effectively adjusting the cable HOUSING length, while the length of the cable remains constant. Increasing cable length or decreasing cable housing length would lead to the same thing, so wouldn't it be easier to just say that you are adjusting cable tension when the derailleur is in the default position (even though tension would not be changed in any other position because I agree that is determined by spring strength).

Therefore, I don't see why saying that you adjusted the cable tension is wrong - it is certainly more correct than saying that you adjusted the cable length if you did not touch the pinch bolt, and is certainly not worth swearing at people about. Calm down!

Last edited by Chris_W; 05-09-10 at 01:11 PM.
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Old 05-09-10, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris_W View Post
Interesting point. I agree that the tension when the front derailleur is in the outer position does not change (it is determined by the spring strength). However, the cable tension when the front derailleur is in the inner position CAN be changed. The cable could be completely slack and hanging loose, with just the limit screw holding the derailleur in place, or the cable itself could be holding the derailleur in place, with the limit screw doing nothing. In between these extremes are various degrees of cable tension, which can be measured by seeing how far you can pull the bare cable away from the downtube when the shifter and derailleur are in the inner position.

In addition, you say that people should talk about "adjusting cable LENGTH" - that is true if you undo the pinch bolt and pull more or less cable through. However, if you make the adjustment by turning an adjusting barrel then you are effectively adjusting the cable HOUSING length, while the length of the cable remains constant. Increasing cable length or decreasing cable housing length would lead to the same thing, so wouldn't it be easier to just say that you are adjusting cable tension when the derailleur is in the default position (even though tension would not be changed in any other position because I agree that is determined by spring strength).

Therefore, I don't see why saying that you adjusted the cable tension is wrong - it is certainly more correct than saying that you adjusted the cable length if you did not touch the pinch bolt, and is certainly not worth swearing at people about. Calm down!
By making the effective cable housing length longer, you are also - in effect - making the cable shorter.
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Old 05-09-10, 08:45 PM
  #10  
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I personally like town tube shift levers better than the brifters, but yes the front derailluer does take a swift lever movement ! You gotta push that thing pretty fast and hard to get a clean shift ! Make sure the FD is adjusted perfect. If it's off a hair it will cause problems. Also, tighten cable slack from the derailluer not the adj barrel.
Lube that chain and FD with something ! You'll be suprised what a little Tri-Flow will do ! Did you grease the cable ? It can be something really miniscule ??
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Old 05-09-10, 11:07 PM
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shifting down to the small ring in front was meant to be a warning sign to those within a 1 mile radius...you know, all those in earshot.

yeah, it's fine
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Old 05-09-10, 11:38 PM
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I've been working on the SRAM front shifting issue and have a theory after riding a Madone 6 with Force which shifted well while mine is pretty stiff. Notice the cable locations below: with the Madone the cable is back and away from the spring and has good leverage on the mech, with the Cervelo the cable is rubbing the back of the spring and is pulling from a less than ideal angle. So I think it's at least partly frame dependent on how well SRAM front shifts depending on the cable angle you get with the front mech. Also there was the problem at least with Red where the mech could be tilted back or front and SRAM started sending out little wedges with the FD to correct that angle. I don't think it's a stretch to guess that Rival and Force could have that problem and my 2009 Force front mech looks a little tilted forward.

Contrador Madone 6:



Cervelo Soloist from Cervelo forum:

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Old 05-12-10, 09:27 PM
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I just shortened up the cables on my Rival bike (the assembling LBS left them way too long). Before I shortened them up the front took a pretty long through to get from the little to big ring, sometimes even dropping back to the little ring if I wasn't aggresive enough with the shift. It was also relatively quite through the two position downshift. After I shortened up the cables I have to apply quite a bit more force to the shift lever but going from little to big is pretty much instantaneous. Downshifting performance hasn't really improved but it certainly is quite a bit louder. Where it used to be a muted click it now has an authoratative SNAP! I don't think it has much to do with the shorter cables, but instead the cable tension. I was going to mess with it a bit when I get a little time by letting a bit more slack in the line to see if I can find a happy medium between the loud SNAP! and the faster upshift. Frankly, I rarely use the little ring so it doesn't bother me too much but I'd like to see what really caused the change.
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Old 05-12-10, 10:42 PM
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So I was going to make my own post, but figured we are already on the subject.... and figured PlatyPius could direct me to the correct answer....

So I adjusted my inner and outer throws correctly, aligned the derailleur correctly with 3-4 mm clearance over the outer chainring. Shifts like a dream up to the big when spinning or under hard tension (cable tension is set well). Downshifts into the small ring well in normal situations, but if I am hammering up a hill an need to downshift.... I click and the derailleur doesnt move. Even if I ease off the tension, it still wont shift... I normally have to downshift my rear, which will cause the front derailleur to then jump down (normally without throwing the chain).

In races its a PITA, as I really have to anticipate my efforts and gearing. This doesnt seem to be a cable tension issue, but an issue of the spring in the FD not returning.... at first I thought maybe with a little flexing the outer plate is catching on the big chainring, but its hard to see when its happening....

Should I just be looking at lubing the return spring, or start fron scratch and see if reclamping the FD on there and resetting the limit screws may resolve the issue?

09 rival FD, 08 force crankset, 09 rival shifters.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:08 PM
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The derailleur is 1-2mm (really, it's 1mm optimal) over the outer not 3-4mm. 3-4mm you might as well have positioned the derailleur in orbit.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:56 PM
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If lowering the FD by a couple of mm doesn't help (which I would try first) then trying slackening off the inner limit screw slightly, that should make the shift faster. If you're then worried about dropping the chain off the inside of the rings then get a chain drop prevention device, which I think everyone should use (many pro riders are now using them because the few extra grams is worth it for the insurance it gives).
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Old 05-13-10, 08:37 AM
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ill adjust it all after the races this weekend and give an update, thanks guys!

Ill likely start with lowering it a little.... after that, Ill likely slack off the inner limit screw a whole LOT.... just to see if that solves the problem. I think I did already try that, and it didnt correct the problem, only cause me to throw the chain off to the inside when it did shift.
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Old 05-13-10, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by milnerpt View Post
after that, Ill likely slack off the inner limit screw a whole LOT....
Why? If the derailler shifts the chain just not when under any amount of tension, I agree that only a minor tweak to the inner limit screw is needed. Just make sure your cable tension isn't so high that you aren't even stopping at the inner limit screw. Making a major change to the setting of that screw is sure to cause problems like throwing the chain. You seem to understand that so why would you even bother doing it?

Also, no front derailler likes to shift down under heavy tension. It only takes a split second of soft pedaling and a well-timed click to shift down. Even a perfectly adjusted front derailler won't shift if you aren't letting up on the pedals so make sure your technique is up to snuff before wasting your time with unnecessary adjustments.
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Old 05-13-10, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
The next person who says that they've adjusted 'cable tension' gets shot into f#$%ing orbit. Tension is controlled by the spring in the derailleur. It is not adjustable. You are adjusting cable LENGTH.
I adjusted my CABLE TENSION !
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Old 05-13-10, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by cbchess View Post
I adjusted my CABLE TENSION !
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Old 05-13-10, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by joejack951 View Post
Why? If the derailler shifts the chain just not when under any amount of tension, I agree that only a minor tweak to the inner limit screw is needed. Just make sure your cable tension isn't so high that you aren't even stopping at the inner limit screw. Making a major change to the setting of that screw is sure to cause problems like throwing the chain. You seem to understand that so why would you even bother doing it?

Also, no front derailler likes to shift down under heavy tension. It only takes a split second of soft pedaling and a well-timed click to shift down. Even a perfectly adjusted front derailler won't shift if you aren't letting up on the pedals so make sure your technique is up to snuff before wasting your time with unnecessary adjustments.
I was going to open the inner throw a whole lot because it will point out if that is the problem (which I doubt). Im thinking that even if I open up the inner throw, its still going to get stuck up there, but we will see.... obviously, if it corrects the problem, Im going to have to find the balance point where the chain doesnt drop but still shifts.

As far as soft pedaling, I understand what you are getting at, but this is an abnormal event. I can reproduce it easily, and its not an extreme amount of force..... up a hill, if the peloton accelerates , I will get stuck in the big ring.... its not an amount my dura-ace cant handle...
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Old 05-13-10, 09:29 PM
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loosened up the inner throw a little. Didnt change the clamp of the FD. It will still stall a little under tension, but easing off will allow it to downshift. Try as I might, I couldnt throw the chain off the inner ring, either... so double win...thanks!

Before, it would stall under tension and not downshift, even when I completely ease up on the pedaling... now its comprable to my dura-ace, where I dont have to back off much to allow it to downshift.
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