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Am I missing out on much if I avoid 9 speed stuff?

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Am I missing out on much if I avoid 9 speed stuff?

Old 06-07-17, 02:52 AM
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sroller
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Am I missing out on much if I avoid 9 speed stuff?

I only became interested in building up older bikes in the last 3 or so years, so a relative nood. So far I have enjoyed the swapping around to newly acquired parts from purchasing used complete or partial bikes and appreciating all the gradual differences, and have stuck to mainly Shimano drivetrains and other Japanese stuff so I haven't yet ventured too wildly, and have arrived at two 6 speed, two 7 speed, four 8 speed and three 10 speeds bikes, all with dual chainring set-ups. It's been fun. Somehow though I've avoided ever building a 9 speed bike and got into the habit of going, "9 speed? Nah..."


I've got a couple of 9 speed cassettes and a rear derailleur and crankset that say '9 speed' have crept into my collection but haven't yet had occasion to do anything with them. In the back of my mind it dawns on me sometimes, when say I see reasonable looking deals on 9 speed shifters, that one fateful day despite my efforts to avoid it I may end up building a 9 speed bike! But then I wake up to myself and think, "what for?!" For what advantages? What new experience would that give me that my current bikes don't already and am I better off just using or adapting any '9 speed' stuff I end up with to my current bikes if I can?


Am I missing out on much if I keep avoiding 9 speed?
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Old 06-07-17, 03:01 AM
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As far as looks and performance go it's tough to beat Dura Ace 7700.
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Old 06-07-17, 03:06 AM
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My nicest shifting and quietest bike is a 9 speed XT.
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Old 06-07-17, 03:15 AM
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You won't miss much, but with more gears you can have a wider range with less space between gears. A 13-28 9 speed is much nicer to ride than 13-28 6 speed. You can buy 9 speed downtube shifters. My Trek is full 9 speed. Shifts nice and crisp.

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Old 06-07-17, 03:15 AM
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Am I missing out on much if I keep avoiding 9 speed?
Nope - not in my opinion and I have run every speed imaginable up to and including 10 speed. Of course, I do not rely on shifting performance in the competitive sense. If I did race, perhaps I would be better prepared to answer the question. Of course...

If having tried them all and being able to say you did is important to you, then, by all means, build up a 9 speed. It is only another opportunity to have fun.
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Old 06-07-17, 04:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
You won't miss much, but with more gears you can have a wider range with less space between gears. A 13-28 9 speed is much nicer to ride than 13-28 6 speed. You can buy 9 speed downtube shifters. My Trek is full 9 speed. Shifts nice and crisp.


Nice Trek. If I found a 9 speed bike like that complete I'd go for it if had something about it more enticing than on comparable bikes I have. What kind of tubing does it have?

Here is a diagram I did with my bikes' gearing. Missing are two more bikes but they have identical 8 speed gearing to the other two on there. I did that on purpose so I can compare the bikes on how they go on similar routes, hills, etc.

I agree with you but as you can see I'm pretty well covered with my ten speeds if I need more range.


Originally Posted by randyjawa
]Nope - not in my opinion and I have run every speed imaginable up to and including 10 speed. Of course, I do not rely on shifting performance in the competitive sense. If I did race, perhaps I would be better prepared to answer the question. Of course...

Am still learning to appreciate the importance of getting into the right gear in a hurry, but getting there. I was recently challenged at some lights by a stranger and realized that with a compact crankset you have to spin fast on an easier gear and then you can change up quickly to get up speed.


I might get a 12-25 cassette to put on one of the 10 speed bikes next and maybe try a semi-compact crankset.
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Old 06-07-17, 05:36 AM
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Originally Posted by sroller View Post
Nice Trek. If I found a 9 speed bike like that complete I'd go for it if had something about it more enticing than on comparable bikes I have. What kind of tubing does it have?
It's a 531 frame. I got lucky and bought the bike already set up like that for $100, I think it may have been a divorce deal. The parts don't cost that much. You can even get 10 speed DT shifters, Jenson has them for $60. 10 speed wheelsets are cheap since all the new stuff is 11 speed. I'll probably end up getting 10spd shifters since I already have an Ultegra 10spd cassette.
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Old 06-07-17, 05:55 AM
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I consider 9-speed to be a best-value and best-performing of the Shimano and Campagnolo drivetrain. Using Shimano components, a builder can combine a 12-13-14-15-17-19-21-23-27 cassette with a 50-34 compact double or a 53, 42 & 30 triple and get a really useful range with tight cog spacing. The brifters and Ergo levers also fit and function very well, better than the 8-speed units.

If you want to build a wide-range touring drivetrain using some Shimano Mountain Bike components, 9-speed is ideal. Combine a 12-14-16-18-21-24-28-32-36 cassette with a 48, 36 & 26 crankset and you will fear no hill.

This retro-roadie has 2x9 Campagnola Chorus drivetrain, shifters and brakes. Chorus hubs with Velocity A23 rims. This bike has a 53 & 39 crankset with a 13-14-15-16-17-19-21-23-26 cassette.








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Old 06-07-17, 06:33 AM
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sroller, Even though I am keen on 8S and 9S drivetrains, I can't say you're really missing out by not having a 9S on a roadie. Mountain bikes used 9S cassettes for many years which can be handy for building a touring bike or something that'll be used for a lot of climbing..

I do really like the Shimano 9S 14-25T Junior spec. cassette and I have that on two roadie wheel sets. It really plays well with a 52-42T crank set in the flat lands and for hilly terrain, one of the crank sets is a 6503 with a 30T inner chain ring.

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Old 06-07-17, 06:44 AM
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9 speed Ultegra and Dura Ace is good stuff. I transitioned to Campy years ago, mostly because of the ergonomics. I retired my last bike, my cross bike, with Ultegra 9 a few months ago. I switched its replacement to Campy 10 just for conformity with the rest of my fleet. It still had crisp reliable shifting.

The only down check on these IMO, is the STI shifter tend to gum up over time and require a WD 40 blowout - a problem I've never experienced with the Campy Ergos.
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Old 06-07-17, 07:37 AM
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I am with Legs on this one. I used Ultegra and DA 9 extensively, great groups and still have one of each (and spares). Hand arthritis has me move to Campy as the blocky ergonomics on the hoods is uncomfortable at distances. I use 10 and 11 Campy but don't need additional cogs for my riding so have moved some bikes back to 8 Campy. Have found some bargains in Chorus and Athena groups. I really like the result of new g springs and maybe a carrier in the Campy replacements as compared to flushing and lubing Shimano.
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Old 06-07-17, 07:52 AM
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Your gear chart is a good approach. Work out which gear ratios (gear inches) you actually use and when on each bike and make sure that these are available in the gears you have on that bike. It' surprising, when I did this I found after discounting the nearly identical ratios you get on each chainring with different rear sprockets, it may only be four to six different gears!


For that reason, most of my bikes have six or seven sprocket set ups. My " best" road bikes have eight and nine speed - even the new carbon roadie I built has 9 speed Dura Ace! I simply don't get any benefit from carrying the weight of more cogs.


If you race, it does make a difference, hence the proliferation of 11 speed wireless electronic shifting. My racing days are long over and it makes no difference at all on my rides if I take half a second longer changing gear if I'm not putting optimum power down. Any gains will be lost when I have to stop at traffic lights, to avoid a parked car or buy an ice cream!
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Old 06-07-17, 09:53 AM
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In my view, each time you add one cog to the freewheel or cassette, it is an improvement, but the improvement is less each time. I have several bikes, and some of them have:

3x6
3x9
3x7
3x7 (another)
3x10
2x10

I'm about to convert the 3x6 drivetrain, which is friction and freewheel, to 3x9 indexed with cassette, of course.

I really like having more gears, because they're close together so I can shift more frequently. I also like having the shifters close to my hands so I don't have to move them, and that means I *can* shift more.

But it's not essential! I've been getting by with a 6-speed freewheel on one of my bikes for a long time.

I also have two fixed gear (1-speed) bikes and a three-speed with an internally geared hub. Clearly, one doesn't need gears for every ride.
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Old 06-07-17, 11:44 AM
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In Shimano 9 speed was about when they still made the Long and short cage road and MTB stuff cross compatible.

10 & 11 they became distinctly not so.
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Old 06-07-17, 12:04 PM
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IMHO if you skip 9 speed entirely the only thing you are missing out on is Dura Ace 7700 which is simply wonderful.

5500/5510 and 6500/6510 were OK, but I think 10 speed 5600/5700 and 6600/6700 were better groups with a higher quality shifting feel, especially on the downshift from the big ring to the small ring/s. 105 and Ultegra 9 speed had a very abrupt drop, slamming the FD to the limit screw. DA 7700 and the 10 speed groups handle that with more finesse.
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Old 06-07-17, 12:08 PM
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I find I need at least a 2x6 setup, and a 3x5 or a 2x7 is better.

The real advantage of 8 or 9 speeds on a road bike is that you can get corncob single-tooth progressions in the high gears, thereby eliminating the need for any simultaneous shifting of both derailleurs. On a mountain bike, it lets you have road bike gear progressions at the high end, coupled with "wall climbing" low gears.

I currently run 3x8 on my mountain bike, and it works out pretty well as a 1.5 step plus granny:

48-40-24/12-13-15-17-19-21-24-28. Note that this does not get me to corncob, so I still have double shifts to hit intermediate ratios, but it serves me well.
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Old 06-07-17, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by sroller View Post
I only became interested in building up older bikes in the last 3 or so years, so a relative nood. So far I have enjoyed the swapping around to newly acquired parts,........ and have arrived at two 6 speed, two 7 speed, four 8 speed and three 10 speeds bikes, all with dual chainring set-ups. It's been fun. Somehow though I've avoided ever building a 9 speed bike and got into the habit of going, "9 speed? Nah..."


I've got a couple of 9 speed cassettes and a rear derailleur and crankset that say '9 speed' have crept into my collection but haven't yet had occasion to do anything with them. In the back of my mind it dawns on me sometimes, when say I see reasonable looking deals on 9 speed shifters, that one fateful day despite my efforts to avoid it I may end up building a 9 speed bike! But then I wake up to myself and think, "what for?!" For what advantages?


Am I missing out on much if I keep avoiding 9 speed?
I'm in the same place you are -
A nice frame and one 9sp group, while owning 4 10speeds.

Here were my considerations:
1. I like to have interchangeable wheelsets, so heavy preference NOT to go 9.
1a. a single 9sp wheelset limits the tires for this nice frameset.
1b. which wheels for 9? Clincher or tubular? 23/25/28?
1c. why limit yourself?

2. I like to use what I have on-hand and keep costs reasonable. Heavy preference to GO 9.
(Especially in recognition of the larger fleet and competing outdoor hobbies.)
a. .... got the parts, use them. keep the cost minimal.
b. $150 to have Ergo 9 shifters upgraded to 10.

3. I wanted it faster and easier which meant = use what I had.

The Batavus will be 9 speed, with a $200-ish upgrade path to 10speed if the frame is worthy of tubular wheels. $150 Ergo upgrade + $50-ish 10sp cassette.
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Old 06-07-17, 01:29 PM
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I run triples up front and 5, 6, and 7 clusters in the back. I get to keep the 52/42 standard for everyday use , and have a granny for tough climbs.(which is every climb for me) I usually have a tight spaced cluster on back. The triple also allows the use of a short/medium RD in most cases.

It will be interesting to see where electronic shifting/drivetrains go in the future. If,....if electronic shifting gets so good that the rider is no longer shifting the FD, you might see the manufacturers/industry go back to triples in the front and 7-8 cogs in back. They could probably take the rear spacing back to around 120 and solve some of the rear spacing issues they are running into.
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Old 06-07-17, 04:30 PM
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www.probikekit.com
sale on Campy, as always.

Xenon 10sp Ergo, with old school rounded top of hoods for $69.99 and other discounts may apply. I wonder if it shifts like older Veloce (mechanical feel to shifts, front der trim capability) or new Veloce which went Shimano-like.

Anyone tested Xenon 10sp?

Ooopps, OP is Shimano = nevermind.
I defer to anything Doc says about Dura Ace.
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Old 06-07-17, 05:13 PM
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You're missing out on Shimergo-oh-oh!
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Old 06-07-17, 05:14 PM
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I've never ridden anything higher than 7sp (unless you count test riding my son's 8sp), so can tell you unequivocally you are not missing out on anything!
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Old 06-07-17, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
IMHO if you skip 9 speed entirely the only thing you are missing out on is Dura Ace 7700 which is simply wonderful.

5500/5510 and 6500/6510 were OK, but I think 10 speed 5600/5700 and 6600/6700 were better groups with a higher quality shifting feel, especially on the downshift from the big ring to the small ring/s. 105 and Ultegra 9 speed had a very abrupt drop, slamming the FD to the limit screw. DA 7700 and the 10 speed groups handle that with more finesse.

The better FD trim with the 7700, compared to the 650X, was the only difference I could feel.

Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
I'm in the same place you are -
A nice frame and one 9sp group, while owning 4 10speeds.
Here were my considerations:
1. I like to have interchangeable wheelsets, so heavy preference NOT to go 9.
1a. a single 9sp wheelset limits the tires for this nice frameset.
1b. which wheels for 9? Clincher or tubular? 23/25/28?
1c. why limit yourself?

2. I like to use what I have on-hand and keep costs reasonable. Heavy preference to GO 9.
(Especially in recognition of the larger fleet and competing outdoor hobbies.)
The free hub on the 9S wheel unable to accommodate a 10S cassette?

Brad

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Old 06-08-17, 01:03 AM
  #23  
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https://www.eb3d.org/IMG_3187.JPG

I built this retro Peugeot with Ultegra 9 speed a few years back. It really does shift great - smooth and precise. So if shifting performance is what you're after, then get go for it.
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