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Looking to upgrade from Ultegra 6500 to 6700 Compact Crankset

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Looking to upgrade from Ultegra 6500 to 6700 Compact Crankset

Old 01-23-13, 07:42 PM
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Looking to upgrade from Ultegra 6500 to 6700 Compact Crankset

Id like to switch to a compact crankset. Ive got Shimano Ultegra 6500 53/39 crankset and 9-speed 12/27 cassette. The bottom bracket is Shimano BB5500, cartridge type, BC 1.37 68 with a Octalink spline.

Can I use a Shimano Ultegra 6700 50/34 crankset with the 9-speed cassette (according to Shimano the 6700 is designed for 10-speed chain)? Might I have to change the front derailleur and shorten the chain?

Can I replace the cartridge style bottom bracket with an Ultegra 6700 BB? Or will this effect the chain alignment?

Thanks,
Doug
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Old 01-23-13, 07:53 PM
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You'll need to lower your FD and do some minor tweeking on adjustments but everything will play together fine. I went from standard to compact a while ago and it is much more functional for me.
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Old 01-23-13, 07:59 PM
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As CACycling for having to drop the FD a bit, as for the BB, you have no choice but to change to an HT2 external type, as the 6700 crank only comes in this fitting.

The chain alignment for road bikes is a fixed 68mm (english thread BB's, like you have) and external BB's have eliminated the need to worry about this.

For running with a 9 speed chain, haven't tried this on the road, but with MTB, mix and matching works fine with chainrings for 9&10 speed, so wouldn't anticipate any issues.

For the chain, you will have to shorten it, it would also be a good time to check to seen how much life it has left.
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Old 01-24-13, 01:49 PM
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Thanks for the replies. Now that I see that it can be easily done, I'm wondering about the mid-compact 52/36 chainrings. I understand that this may require a little more tweaking of the FD but probably no more than adjusting for the 50/34.

Additional question, I've been offered a mid compact 50/34 with 172.5mm cranks and I normally ride 175, will the difference be noticeable? I'm pretty tall, 6' 2" with average (34" pant inseam) leg length.

Thanks,
Doug
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Old 01-24-13, 03:00 PM
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You might not notice a difference, but you'd want to raise your saddle by a couple of mm. (Assuming it was in a good spot to begin with. )

I think you're wise to go for the 50/34 compact -- three teeth on the smaller chainring wouldn't make enough of a difference to be worth the expense and effort.

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Old 01-24-13, 03:27 PM
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When I went from standard cranks to mid-compact I didn't need to move my FD at all - 1 tooth isn't really noticeable. Going from 52 to 50 and then back to 52 required some FD movement & subsequent re-tweaking.

As for crank length, my standard crank was 172.5 (somehow I misordered, I usually ride 175) and when I went back to 175 on my (mid)compact crank, the only thing I really noticed was a need to lower my seat - as Thermionic scott already said.

Depending on how hilly it is near you (and how strong / light of a rider you are), a 52/36 is a great compromise between standard and compact. You can always change chainrings once you get the compact crank on if you don't like it.
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Old 01-24-13, 07:38 PM
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Cool! Thanks again for the replies. I think I'll go ahead and start with the 50/34 and see how it goes.
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Old 01-25-13, 07:36 AM
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I use 10 speed Ultegra compacts on two otherwise 9 speed bikes, works fine. The new external bb system is so easy to work with.
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Old 01-25-13, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv
I use 10 speed Ultegra compacts on two otherwise 9 speed bikes, works fine. The new external bb system is so easy to work with.
What chain width do you use, 9 or 10-speed?
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Old 01-25-13, 08:09 AM
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I use 9 speed, they are cheaper!
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