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Best Mid-70s + derailleurs?

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Best Mid-70s + derailleurs?

Old 04-06-19, 09:54 PM
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Best Mid-70s + derailleurs?

Hi folks, I’d like inputs and suggestions on what the best mid 70s to early 80s touring derailleurs are. Last fall I picked up a 76 Holdsworth, probably a Mistral, setup as a tourer with a TA triple CS, Campagnolo Rallye derailleurs, Suntour bar ends, Universal center pulls and 27” wheels. I’ve re-laced the Sunshine Pro-Am hubs to 700C rims and would like to install better, but reasonably period correct derailleurs. Thanks in advance.

Cheers,



Van
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Old 04-06-19, 10:14 PM
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Suntour V-GT , cyclone long cage
at the time Campagnolo Record front mechanisms were pretty popular no matter- other than a huge huge range in front .
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Old 04-06-19, 10:16 PM
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For me, personally, anything Suntour.
I've had good luck with the Cyclone group and VxGt or Arx.
Currently using a triple pulley Suntour XC RD since it's the best shifting one I've had the privilage to use.
If you could get your hands on a Cyclone Gen I or MK II, I think you'd be set.
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Old 04-06-19, 10:29 PM
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(Edit: rear derailleurs) SunTour V-GT or V-VT Lux is the more robust, the Cyclone GT the more sexy and sexy shifting. Both work well. For serious touring, I'd go with either of the V-GT as they can probably handle clumsy shifts done at too low speeds better without damaging themselves. For an unloaded super mountain bike (road hill climber, not MTB) ridden aggressively at higher speeds, the Cyclone is sweet. My Mooney ran a Cyclone GT for many years and I loved it and did some but not much loaded touring.

I refitted my first "real" bike with the V-GT lux when I ran a 52-42-28 X 13-19. The bike did not have a derailleur hanger so I made a hanger from 6061 1/5" plate, making so short the derailleur barely cleared the little cogs. Full on race shifting. Yes the Cyclone was better but not by a lot (except weight).

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Old 04-06-19, 10:55 PM
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Another vote for Suntour long cage Derailleurs, but you could also look at a Huret Duopar. It shifts even better than the Suntour, but is a bit less durable.
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Old 04-07-19, 12:14 AM
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Shimano Crane, Suntour Cyclone GT, Huret Duopar are all derailleurs with relatively large capacities that I have that work well. I'm about to try an early 80s first gen Deore RD once I get it in the mail from a forum member.
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Old 04-07-19, 02:11 AM
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Campy Rally RDs

There were several versions of Campagnolo Rally derailleurs. The first ones that came out in 1974 were drop parallelogram style. They were basically knockoffs of the Shimano Crane GS long cage derailleurs and worked the same.

The second version of the original 1974 Rally with a reinforced upper knuckle.



1974 Shimano Crane GS. These worked GREAT BITD.



There was some unpublished brouhaha about patent infringement and Campagnolo completely changed the design. They used the original Rally pulley cage and parallelogram plates with the cheap ugly knuckles from the Nuovo Gran Sport derailleurs. These don't work nearly as well as any of the drop parallelogram style derailleurs.



I've used a lot of different Shimano, Simplex, Huret and Campy long arm RDs over the past 45 years. Last year I picked up a 1971 Raleigh Competition beater with a Raleigh badged Suntour VGX RD. After I overhauled it, turns out I was surprised at how well it works.



If you have one of the first generation Campy Rally RDs why would you want to change?

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Old 04-07-19, 02:34 AM
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Wouldn't the choice of derailleurs be according to what you want to do?

On a touring bike the Rally is a great mech but if you plan to put serious miles on it I would favor the suntour line as well. It's not that the Campy would handle it, it is the sloppy shifting that would get under my skin after days on the road. I have a couple favorite bikes and like to do group rides with the kids. When I run a suntour setup the shifting is almost as smooth as any of my bikes with Ergo or STI shifting even though it is friction. With the Record rear derailleur I shift and get that @!$#% noise like a index setup not adjusted properly and have to move my shifter a little to quiet it down.

In the end I find the beauty of the Campagnolo unbeatable but will admit the suntour will perform better day in and day out.
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Old 04-07-19, 02:50 AM
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+1 for most anything suntour, particularly the Cyclone MkII. They don't have the following of earlier Cyclone models but is a terrific RD.
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Old 04-07-19, 05:35 AM
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I have a strong preference for the Japanese derailleurs from this time period. The Shimano 600 GS with the long arm is another model to consider. It can handle a 13-32 freewheel combined with a 52, 40 & 28 triple.


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Old 04-07-19, 06:09 AM
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If you're limiting yourself to the 70s, you're looking for the best friction touring/big cog/chain wrap derailleur-

I think it comes down to 2 Class A choices- the Suntour V-GT Luxe and the Suntour Cyclone GT.

The V-GT Luxe is the more robust of them- it's got steel where it you just might need it, and aluminum where you won't need it. It shifts impeccably, it looks pretty cool, it's burly, it's outrageously EASY to remove the chain and it was stupidly inexpensive and used on gazillions of bicycles of al ranges in its day (which I've heard made it appear "cheap")... it's just all around a great, great piece.


Suntour V-GT Luxe by Dave The Golden Boy, on Flickr


The Cyclone has all the performance attributes of the V-GT Luxe- but it's all aluminum (I think except for the screws) and still one of the lightest derailleurs ever and it's BEAUTIFUL.





IMO- the only way you can make those two any better is to replace the pulleys with sealed bearing units.

If you were building this touring bike without concession to the period correct components- but within a 5-8 speed rear end- I would fully support the Shimano M735 Deore XT or my personal favorite, the Suntour XC Pro- but those are from around 1990.


M735 XT and M900 XTR Rear Derailleurs by Dave The Golden Boy, on Flickr


Suntour XC Pro Medium and Long Cage by Dave The Golden Boy, on Flickr
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Old 04-07-19, 06:17 AM
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BTW- there was a poll on this a few years ago- but not limited to 70s- if you're interested with what folks here said a few years ago.

Poll - Best Vintage Touring Derailleur Ever!
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Old 04-07-19, 06:51 AM
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I'd use the Rally with a 6-speed cluster.
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Old 04-07-19, 06:58 AM
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I'd match up a Suntour V-GT with those bar ends. Period correct, solid shifting and durable. I would choose it over the the Cyclone for touring because it has a barrel adjuster. The Cyclone is prettier and lighter but being able to easily tighten up cable slack can come in handy in a pinch when you can't reach that lowest gear.
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Old 04-07-19, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
Suntour V-GT , cyclone long cage
at the time Campagnolo Record front mechanisms were pretty popular no matter- other than a huge huge range in front .
No question about it. As for function and reliability, nothing beat Suntour from that era. I currently have a beater town bike built on a Schwinn gas-pipe frame using a Suntour rear derailleur, it works flawlessly.
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Old 04-07-19, 08:49 AM
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Suntour
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Old 04-07-19, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by BikeWonder View Post
For me, personally, anything Suntour.
For performance, +1 this. The fancier SunTour models, e.g. Cyclone, Superbe are lighter and prettier than the lower end models, but the entire SunTour product line performs pretty much identically across the board; that is to say, "very well indeed."
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Old 04-07-19, 10:43 AM
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Another derailleur to consider is the Huret Duopar. It was arguably the best shifting touring derailleur available in 1976. However, it was expensive and the sheet metal construction made a bit flimsy for some cyclists' tastes. The Duopar was a derailleur you either loved or hated. Still, nothing said "grand touring" in 1976 like having a Duopar on your bicycle. It would also keep the drivetrain "tout Francais".
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Old 04-07-19, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Senior Ryder 00 View Post
Hi folks, I’d like inputs and suggestions on what the best mid 70s to early 80s touring derailleurs are. Last fall I picked up a 76 Holdsworth, probably a Mistral, setup as a tourer with a TA triple CS, Campagnolo Rallye derailleurs, Suntour bar ends, Universal center pulls and 27” wheels. I’ve re-laced the Sunshine Pro-Am hubs to 700C rims and would like to install better, but reasonably period correct derailleurs. Thanks in advance.
I have to ask, what is the problem with the Rally derailleurs that are already on there? Fairly or not, many people BITD would have considered those the best. They were certainly the most expensive and prestigious. Are you concerned about function, or perceived value, or period correctness? Something else?

FWIW, 9/10 times a customer came into a shop complaining about the derailleur not working properly BITD and wanting a new one, the issue wasn't the derailleur itself. It was usually just adjustment, setup, a bent hanger, a chain with stiff links or maybe the wrong length, and other stuff like that. A derailleur just moves the chain back and forth. The chain and freewheel and set up make the most difference. What I'm saying I guess, is make sure that's all dialed in before replacing stuff.

That said, I agree with everyone else. The best functioning derailleurs were Suntour. Cyclone or V-GT, they all work the same. Cyclone fancier and lighter, VGT more rugged. I'd probably put a Cyclone on in this case, just because that's a pretty fancy bike. It'll hold up fine if you try not to hit rocks with it.
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Old 04-07-19, 11:19 AM
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I've got the Rally (the later one, that Chas doesn't endorse) on my Grandis; it works fine. Despite the long cage it feels only a little sloppier than my standard NR derailleurs. With the NR shifters, it has a nice light touch that I can never quite duplicate with my SunTour setups, for some reason.


Jury's still out on my Huret Duopar, I need to try it with shifters I like better. The ones I am using with it require so much muscle to move that shifting is pretty awkward. The capacity can't be beat, though. If you want WIDE range, its certainly worth a look.
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Old 04-07-19, 11:55 AM
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There was a lot of sniping, much rooted in how expensive it was, but Frank Berto's period instrumented tests didn't care about that. Huret Duopar Titane. Word.
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Old 04-07-19, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by daviddavieboy View Post
Wouldn't the choice of derailleurs be according to what you want to do?

On a touring bike the Rally is a great mech but if you plan to put serious miles on it I would favor the suntour line as well. It's not that the Campy would handle it, it is the sloppy shifting that would get under my skin after days on the road. I have a couple favorite bikes and like to do group rides with the kids. When I run a suntour setup the shifting is almost as smooth as any of my bikes with Ergo or STI shifting even though it is friction. With the Record rear derailleur I shift and get that @!$#% noise like a index setup not adjusted properly and have to move my shifter a little to quiet it down.

In the end I find the beauty of the Campagnolo unbeatable but will admit the suntour will perform better day in and day out.
One of the necessary rider capabilities with friction shifters is to shift the lever, then after it goes into gear "feather" it back until it runs quietly. It's just the way the beasts were in that time frame. That's also the way the racing beasts (Nuovo Record compared to Rallye, for example) worked. Some pieces of the day were better than others. On the better side were the Huret Duopar due to their vertical parallellogram in addition to the standard horizontal paralellogram. On the poorest side were (just my opinion) the Huret Allvit, but I think that was as much due to setup and reliability problems as to any design issues. But none of them will perform well in indexing applications. Frank Berto explored this at length in Dancing Chain, his Bicycling Magazine articles, and his book Upgrading your Bicycle. Not just my ideas.
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Old 04-07-19, 04:35 PM
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I'm skeptical about the claim that you couldn't get a duopar to index, given you had the right shiftmate. I mean, you can get a Shimano Skylark to index and a duopar is clearly superior to that sincethose Berto articles said it was on par with if not superior to contemporary slant designs.
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Old 04-07-19, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Kuromori View Post
I'm skeptical about the claim that you couldn't get a duopar to index, given you had the right shiftmate. I mean, you can get a Shimano Skylark to index and a duopar is clearly superior to that sincethose Berto articles said it was on par with if not superior to contemporary slant designs.
Am I missing your point? A friction derailleur is by most definitions, one that wasn't designed and manufactured with a compatible indexing shifter. You used the qualifier, 'given the right shiftmate'. Yes, you might be able to reverse engineer any good, bad or great derailleur to index given enough resources and skills but why would you?
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Old 04-07-19, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by clubman View Post
Am I missing your point? A friction derailleur is by most definitions, one that wasn't designed and manufactured with a compatible indexing shifter. You used the qualifier, 'given the right shiftmate'. Yes, you might be able to reverse engineer any good, bad or great derailleur to index given enough resources and skills but why would you?
The post before mine was talking about overshift and trim, and no, you can't just make an index shifter for any derailer, it doesn't work like that. That's why the slant parallelogram was such a big deal. A shiftmate is not at all complex, it's just a pulley that modifies cable pull by a set ratio. A duopar really should be able to track cogs nearly as well as a modern index derailer was the point.
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